Friday, October 20, 2017

Easier Day, Hardy Mums, Car Storage, Mom

On Friday, Oct. 20th we woke up together. I was awake at 6 and over the next hour was the first I heard Bill coughing all night. Before I went to bed, I pampered him by rubbing Vick’s on his chest (yes, he could do this himself but……he’s a guy) and then on the bottom of his feet. He put socks on, which is unusual, but it seems to work in preventing coughing while sleeping.

We had our tea and coffee at our laptops before I had my shower. We’re coddling our fresh water more these days as the wells at Gerry’s Acreage are closed off for the winter. We agreed that he do this on Thanksgiving weekend after filling our tank and a spare bladder. If we were desperate we could probably beg, borrow or steal from Pat and Rob. So, a shower today and Sunday before we pull out will leave us with about 25 gallons for travelling.
15 minutes before I hopped in the shower, Bill sprayed the bathroom with Black Flag
 Bill cleaned up and nipped into Durham to get gas for his mower, just enough to cut the rest of the grass and then we’re done for this season. Yay! I’m done cutting grass for a while. We both got our exercise yesterday, our Fitbits were so proud!

Clemson in his morning spot
My first challenge this morning was to put our clean duvet into the cover I had. I wish someone had told me before I bought the cover that I should go smaller than the duvet. We have a king size bed; therefore, sheets and duvet are the same size. The duvet does not completely fill the cover and that makes it slide all over the place. Grrr. Because of that I haven’t had the cover on since the last time I washed the duvet.

Maybe it isn’t a common rule but my sister, Gayle, suggested ‘after’ I bought one, that I should buy a Queen size duvet cover and pin the corners like I am doing now. That way, it doesn’t have sliding room. It just seems one side is always puffier (bunched) than the other. Such a simple thing but it frustrates me. We don’t want a heavy bedspread or multiple blankets; the weight is ridiculous. Been there, done that. The duvet (other than stuffing it) is perfect for us in all weather.

And the duvet is back on the bed with Sergei, Clemson's stuffed friend
I made myself another tea while Bill finished up the back field. We have our leftover omelette for brunch or lunch, whatever, when he is done. I am going in to see Mom this morning before her lunch so can eat when I come back. I don’t feel too hungry yet this morning. I brushed my teeth after having a couple of spoonfuls of yogourt and headed into town.

Once more when I arrived, her door was closed tight and lights off in her room when I peeked. There she was under her blanket on her bed. She was dressed and not in as sound a sleep as the other day because when I said hello, she smiled and started to sit up. I turned her light on and opened the curtains. She said she was so lazy, sleeping so much!

Last time this year
It was a lovely visit and a very nice passerby stopped in and offered to take a picture of us when he saw me trying to do a selfie. Sweet! 

Much nicer than any I take on a self-timer. Another visitor stopped in to see Mom. Bradeep was his name and he is the resident physio-therapist. He wanted to walk with Mom and talk to her about her troubling back.

 This is where it gets awkward with a dementia person, she fluffed her back issues off with a wave of her hand. He asked her questions and I felt for him simply because I don’t know if he realized that she honestly couldn’t remember. It puts Mom on the defensive if you mention dementia in front of her, so I walked quietly behind them. If he caught my eye at one of her replies, I nodded or shook my head.

A very pleasant young man he was and when he offered the simple solution of a hot pack on her lower back for 20 minutes during a day, she flatly refused. Oh my. She said it wasn’t that bad and she would never be able to sit for that long. I tried to encourage her to try it when she is resting on the bed or sitting for her meals but she said she was fine. He said he would come back on Tuesday and see if it is any better. The good news is that the results of the x-rays were negative. None of us know how bad her pain is.

I walked her down to lunch and she was one of the last to arrive. She was in no hurry today. I spoke to Aunt Mary before leaving and said hello to Freida who sits with her. From Rockwood I drove downtown and chatted with Stephanie at IDA about my shingles prescriptions. She wished me luck in Mexico getting what I need at a better price. I picked up some Vitamin D for Bill and got home at 12:30 for my lunch. 

Bill was a busy beaver again today. He finished the grass cutting and cleaned the mower off before putting it and the little wagon away. He was washing the Weber Q and we figured one more use, and it can be stowed in the ‘garage’ of our Suite. 
Clemson gets to go along for a ride
I changed into work clothes and took the Hardy Mum, that Rob and Pat gave me, up the hill. It doesn’t have a lot of healthy blooms left so I hope it isn’t too late to plant. I dug the hole and plopped it in. Fingers crossed it will survive and live up to its name! I forgot to take a picture, maybe tomorrow. The next thing was to compost the tomato and pepper plants. I have 4 little peppers I’ll pick on Sunday to eat up as well.

I had my omelette with fresh little tomatoes and now have to decide what to do with the remaining ones in the fridge. I’ll probably make more soup, something I can freeze rather than give them all away or throw them out. That decision ‘to be continued’. I cleaned up dishes and Bill came in for a snooze. He hasn’t stopped with the physical labour since he got up. My activity has been on a much easier level.

After cleaning up the dishes, we were feeling that there wasn’t much left to do. At 3 o’clock we drove both vehicles to Murray Flemings to store the car for the winter. We called last night to let him know what time we were coming. From there, since we were close to Hanover, I popped into The Independent. They have the Kombucha where the Foodland in Durham does not. I like having it on hand because I’m not sure yet where I can get it once we cross the border. 3 bottles for $10.98 so I got 6. Yay!

On the way home, we discussed supper tonight and also supper tomorrow night in London. Tonight, it is all about simple. Bill requested grilled cheese sandwiches and that sounded good to me. I could include sliced tomatoes in mine and maybe even onion. Hmmm, sounds good. Dinner for us has never really been a big deal, we are easy to please. After eating out so much lately, in Toronto, we can take a night off from a big meal.

We have made arrangements to have dinner in London with our kids tomorrow. I think I have told you this. The day has arrived, holy cow, really quickly too! We wanted to make sure that we could stop and see Dad and Marilynne one last time too in Stratford. Without extending our day too much either before or after dinner, we decided to invite them along. They will enjoy seeing all of the kids too and we’ll get a visit in at the same time.

Following Bill down the lane to drop the car off
Back home again, Clemson got his supper and then we relaxed for an hour before starting our own. Not only are the flies still regular visitors in our Suite but now we are starting to notice lady bugs on the outside of the windows. Enough already! Two days and counting!

Crazy busy grocery store today
After supper, we did the dishes up and I sent an email to my siblings about my visit with Mom today. They would be interested in the xray results, especially. At 7 pm it is dark outside but still quite mild at 16C/60.8F. I can’t hear the wind so that has died down as well. I can honestly say that these accomplishing days have been good ones. 

The pressure to get things done was not pushing us at an uncomfortable rate, we spread it over many days. With just two things left to tuck away, one in the Suite and one in the outhouse, we are in a really good position to leave on Monday as scheduled.

This one speaks for itself

I hope this has been a good day for you too. Thank you for stopping in. All comments are welcome!

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Go-Go-Go, Much to Do and Much Done

Thursday, Oct. 19th I woke up a couple of times through the early morning hours but only because I could hear Bill coughing. I feel horrible when he is sick and actually he isn’t complaining about it all! Huh! I think he is trying to ignore it as much as possible so it goes away. We slept in though until after 7 so that was a good night’s rest.
The start to Thursday was wonderful
 We got up and had our coffee and tea while reading blog posts. It was 11C outside and the wind was picking up as we sat at our laptops. The sunrise was pretty and we were happy we’d decided to do laundry today. With the sun and the wind, they would dry quickly. So, by 8:30 we were arriving in town at the laundromat. At 10 to 9 Bill drove to the other side of Hwy 4 to the Bath & Biscuit Dog Grooming Salon.

We were the only ones there so got our pick of washers
The girls were just opening up the door and took their first ‘puppy client’ right away. We needed more laundry change so Bill stopped at the bank before joining me to finish loading 5 washers! That is the largest pile of dirty clothes we’ve ever had! Two consisted of a duvet and sheets so we won’t count those. I knew I only had so much room on my umbrella line so we dried the sheets and duvet before bringing them home.

We were finished at 10 and went to pick the little spiffy fellow up. He was just getting some finishing touches, yay! I got to see him on the table. We’ve always wondered how the heck he sits so still for the girls and not for us. He was getting the full treatment and all for an awesome $50. Now he is already to travel to the warmer temperatures.

The Royal treatment

Someone feels pretty good

Daddy loves his little guy
After getting home, we had another hot drink and I made up omelettes for breakfast/brunch. I made an extra one for each of us so tomorrow will be another good meal without a lot of hassle. Before doing the dishes, we went outside to get to work. I hung the clothes but was doing a fair bit of grumbling. The clouds had completely taken over the sky and they weren’t nice fluffy white ones.

the river through Durham
The wind was strong around 24km so cool without the sun. I persisted and hung the clothes anyway. It was only supposed to be a 10% chance of rain this morning so once more I put my faith in that. 

Bill had a few projects on his list so he put my wagon in the bunky, then cut some grass around our Goose the Spruce tree on the hill. He wanted to get him and our baby red maple covered for the winter, so managed to finish that. 

Next, I cleaned out the firepit of ashes so we can put it in the outhouse before we leave. All sheds get locked up so we make full use of the storage space at the end of the season.

Started out with a great sky but it didn't last long
When I finished that Bill pulled the old vacuum out of the shed and I started vacuuming the car out. We like to put it away clean and I had left some dirt in the trunk from my sunflowers a month ago. One of those things you mean to get at but it gets put on the back burner. It is done now. While I was doing that, Bill hooked up our little wagon to the back of his riding mower and went down the lane to bring our mailbox up. It will also go into the outhouse on Sunday.

No more mail delivery this year

The mail lady turns around
 From one project to the next, I got my small battery mower out for the last time and cut the grass up on the hill and around my vegetable garden. I was feeling warm so also did around the main area in front of the Suite one last time. I wasn’t noticing the cool wind so much and by this time, the sun had returned in full glory. Now, for sure, the clothes would dry in decent time.

My wagon is the last thing to go in the bunky
Bill just finished bringing the mailbox and post up when he pointed down the lane way. The mail lady was driving up to see us. We forgot to put Mom’s name on our request to forward mail, which started today, and she had one today for her. My, that was silly! Usually, any mail for her comes c/o me but from the bank, of course not. She was quite nice about it and we told her we’d take care of that. When we came inside, Bill went online and updated it so it won’t happen again.

What next? Well, Bill had enough gas in the big mower to do the front field and the corral so he went to do that today. He can get more gas in the morning and do the back field and hillside tomorrow. I, for one, was exhausted from the go-go-go today and by 2 o’clock I was calling it quits. Well, almost.
Everything in its place
I checked the clothes on the line first but only a handful of things were completely dry. The duvet still has some damp spots in areas so when enough of our clothes come off the line, I will hang it out to blow dry the rest of the way. I came inside and made the bed and Bill started doing the dishes. At 2:30 we were done for the day, and all things outside were put away.

With another dose of cough syrup Bill and Clem settled in the recliner. I sat here to start my post. I feel whooped but not enough to snooze so will take my book upstairs. We don’t have a warm enough, sheltered sunny spot to sit outside and read but I love my indoors just as much. I decided to plunge on with the Michael Connelly book since so much of it is lost in my memory anyway. It is still good.

Our firepit sure got rusty this summer
But it is cleaned out at least

So, after reading a few chapters, resting and even dozing a bit, I got up and Bill and I went out to bring the clothes in. It was a battle up there on the hill (we are The Ridge!) with the strong winds. We know if we were in a more communal place with neighbours and buildings and trees all around, it wouldn’t be so cold, but this chilly wind is making us even more ready to head out on Monday.
Once clothes were brought in and put away, it was 5 and time to feed Clemson. He actually waited until 5 tonight, partly because we weren’t in our regular spots in the recliners.  Otherwise, he would be sitting staring at us for food. With the wind gusts over 30 km I’m going to bake my chicken breast inside and we can warm up Bill’s butt chop the same way.
This tasted good but what a bland looking meal!
I forgot to add my little tomatoes for the picture
We are avoiding purchasing too much right now, especially fresh veggies which are questionable going across the border. We’re out of green leafy veggies and potatoes. Hmmm. There was some rice left from last night for Bill and I’ll steam cauliflower for my side dish. Oh wait! I have a box of Stuffing mix in the cupboard. That will be nice for a change.

So, my chicken in the convection oven took a shade over 45 minutes but that was okay. We were eating by 7 and it was very good. With dishes cleaned up it was time to relax for the remainder of the evening. The outside temp is dropping, already sitting at 10C from 14C today. Sorry, that is 50F and 57F for our American friends. The wind died off completely before 6 and for half hour it felt nice out there.

We accomplished more today and the list is getting smaller. Tomorrow is another day. I hope you’ve had a great one.

Thank you for reading. I love hearing from you.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

October Strong, Rockwood Visit with Clemson, Sleeping Beauty

On Wednesday, Oct. 18th I woke up again in an empty bed. Bill and Clemson had vacated an hour earlier at 6:30. I never heard a thing, I was into a dream about a bunch of people I don’t know! Weird. I got up and joined my sweetie at the laptop with my tea. I had a blog post to write so set to work remembering our day yesterday.

A really nice start to the day

Every week I can see more through the laneway brush
The sun was rising in all its glory shortly after I got up and the sky was proving to be clear blue all day. The 9C soon rose and after my tea and publishing I went for a walk down North Line. I wanted to see how the new house was coming along and they are certainly moving quickly with it. 

They’ll be in it before Christmas which must be nice for this family.
Me, myself and I walking - oh, and my shadow too!

A newly graveled road
While I was walking, Bill was puttering outside. He took down our turtle signs and solar panels and was sorting things in the back of Black Beauty when I returned. He added the remaining contents of Def fluid he had already opened and made note to pick up another supply. We have one full bottle to take with us and he likes to be more prepared than that. We’ll check out a price in Hanover this afternoon.
Topping up the Def fluid
I made bacon and eggs up for breakfast at 10 and we cleaned up dishes. Bill went back outside and without my knowledge or assistance removed the car shelter cover. I was busy inside sweeping floors going through the freezer to see what we had on hand. When I walked out to dump my kitchen compost, he was folding it up. Well, he managed it without any undo distress so that was good.
The car shelter ready for winter too
When he came in, he washed up and we drove to Hanover. It was just 12 noon but we wanted to pick up cough syrup at Shopper’s, buy bread at Bread Depot and get some Def fluid at the Napa dealers. The price wasn’t unreasonable for around here so now Bill has the stock he’ll need to get us going. On the way to Hanover, we turned on the Keady road to see if Murray Fleming was home. This is where we store our car for the winter but he wasn’t around today. He is reserving a spot for us we just need to tell him when we are bringing it in.
There is a snug little corner in this barn for our Toyota Corolla
The bread is something we haven’t had in the Suite for a while, trying to cut back a bit, but we’ll need some on hand to make sandwiches while travelling. You can’t get good bread down south, well, that is our opinion. Other than Italian or French which requires you to eat it within a day or two. To buy a loaf in a grocery store of regular bread, D’Italiano or not, it isn’t the freshness we are used to.

 I separated these little sausages into 8 meals and no gluten!
I had an appointment with Shannon at the Hanover branch of BMO to talk about Mom’s finances this time. With a TFSA GIC coming due in December, I wanted to take care of either setting it up for re-investment now or flag it to be held until her next one in May. That is what I did and I also left instruction for another investment to be moved into the same account in January. With that done, I could breathe a sigh of relief knowing her funds would be looked after in my absence.

And to answer a question about the peanut butter we buy.........and then a few of the things I mentioned yesterday.

Best peanut butter out there
(in our opinion)

Coconut Oil from Costco, lasts me a couple of months

Our hall closet is our overflow for coffee, mustard, cranberry juice,
cereal, beans, soup

Another thing I had a hard time finding last year
This will last me well through the winter
When we got back home, Bill emptied our gray tank and put away a couple more things before driving over to meet Gerry at the Acreage. Bill suggested he seal the roof on their Prairie Schooner 5th wheel, it had never been done since they purchased it.

Sometimes, you just don’t know what needs to be done and they don’t pull theirs around so wouldn’t get the same tips we would. Bill has been able to advise them and help them with this kind of stuff. Gerry won’t be able to take care of it just recently recovering from his op so at least Bill can do that for him.

It is blurry because I had to move fast
but Aunt Mary was loving the visit from Clemson
 I decided to take our little bum into town to visit Mom at Rockwood. She hasn’t seen him for a while. As soon as I stepped in the door, Aunt Mary was there at the sign-in book. She was happy to see me so we chatted right there and then she noticed Clemson. Reaching as best she could to pet him, I picked him up and set him on her tray. That lasted about 10 seconds and he jumped down.

the joy in her voice and face was apparent
He is such a greeter but at the same time, yanking and pulling on the leash. I picked him up and brought him back to Mary again. She indicated that she didn’t mind that he wanted to crawl up and give her kisses, so cute. I tried my best with arms full to get a picture but this is the best I could manage. It is always so warm/hot in that home and I know it is for the residents. They don’t mind.

When we said goodbye to Aunt Mary, I felt I’d run in a 5K race. We went up to Mom’s room and stopped numerous times for people to pet and comment on the pooch. When we reached her room, she was sound asleep across her bed. I know she has been experiencing discomfort in her back so we crept in not to wake her. I closed the door, took Clem off his leash and got him a drink of water. All he wanted was to get out.
When I went up to close out my garden, I snapped a pix of the corn behind us
I wish we'd be here to see them take it in
(um, not so much that we'll stick around though!)

And the hostas are still blooming
I made a few gentle noises hoping to rouse her but she was deep in sleep and looking lovely. After 10 minutes, we crept out. Sad but all for the better today. It would have meant only a short visit anyway. I saw on the board that my sister, Cathy, had been up earlier so I didn’t feel too bad. I’m close enough to get up there a couple more times before we head south. 

Quite a windy day
After getting home, I remember that I left Mom’s dish on the floor with water in it for Clemson’s drink. They will certainly wonder what she was trying to do and so will she! So, I called to tell them it wasn’t Mom who was losing her mind, it was me. LOL

When I got home I poured myself a glass of Mountain Dew, trying to cool down and quench a thirst at the same time. I went up to my garden and pulled out the small metal and plastic trellis’ that I used to hold my plants up. The plants themselves will go into the compost and the tomatoes will just get turned over in the soil. It is done for the year.
Yay! My geraniums down at the fence line have taken hold
With Bill still gone, I then walked down to the corner of Baptist Church Road again. Such a beautiful day at 18C this afternoon. The wind is quite strong or it would be much higher than that. Bill drove in around quarter after 4 from helping Gerry. He has been coughing since we got home from Toronto so a cold is lurking. Obviously, from someone on the weekend he caught the virus. Darn! After dinner I will make him some mullein tea, Donna swears by it so we’ll give it a try!

I went upstairs away from the tv noise and got into my book. This is Michael Connelly’s The Burning Room and now that I am 10 chapters in, I’m sure I’ve read it before. With my memory it isn’t surprising that the name wasn’t familiar but I think I’ll keep reading anyway. It might have been a movie we watched that is making it familiar.

Furry Gnome may have to help me with the name of this butterfly
So, we barbecued butt chops for supper and I cooked rice and our veggies inside. I’m still not a fan, the chop was not doing it for me but I ate enough to fill me with the side dishes. There is enough pork chop left for a couple of meals so I stuck half in the freezer and Bill will eat half tomorrow night. I have 2 chicken breasts in the freezer that need to be eaten too.

We did dishes up and Bill was about to make a phone call when he realized he 
didn’t have his phone with him. Oh-oh! I called him on mine to see if it was anywhere on the property but we realized it had to be over at the Acreage. With hope in our pockets that it was on the roof of Gerry’s trailer, we drove over at 7. Up he went with his flashlight and sure enough there it was right where he left it.

Just a few baby peppers trying to grow

More Goose Talk - Which way do we go?
When we got back home, we made the call to Bill’s step sister to chat with her before we leave on Monday. Caroline is going through some not so pleasant stuff right now and we wanted her to know we think of her daily in our prayers. It was nice to hear her voice so positive.

Watching the sun go down after a great fall day
The day has passed, with a few more things accomplished and off our list. Bill got the flag down and sensor solar lights in the Restroom and outside the Roost (bunky) down and away for the winter. Just a few things left to do. I hope you’ve had an enjoyable day in your neck of the woods. What a beautiful fall day!

Bill pays NO attention to the sign as he unlocks the gate to the Acreage

Up the ladder he goes hoping against hope that the phone is up there

Happy man, he climbs back down

Thank you for popping in today. I’d love to hear from you!