Friday, September 30, 2022

Sep. 30 - Our Mail Carrier Is Crazy


This last day of September is starting out foggy instead of frosty, and a chilly 38 degrees.  It still looks amazing outside but I didn't venture out to take pretty pictures this time.  I'm more excited about tomorrow being October than a person probably has any reason to be.  I already have a list started of all the little things I'm eager to do, obvious things like get the Halloween decorations out, but also goofy little things like switching all the soaps to pumpkin scented ones, and even things like changing the background here and on the blog and changing colors on my characters in my online games.  It's the small things, right?!

I showed you my character in the one game I play, in her fall colored outfit, but I never showed the other game I play.
This game is called Ultima Online (or UO, for short) and is considered the grandfather of all modern role playing adventure games like World of Warcraft, etc.  You can actually build your own house and decorate it how you want.  This is my little house just outside of town, with the yard decorated for fall.  I don't have the inside furnished so there is no decorating done in there, but someday I want to get that finished too.  And this weekend I will switch these few fall yard decorations to things with a more Halloween feel.  I'm excited!
In other news, since I know most of you aren't into the type of games I play online, yesterday was another fairly okay day.  Spent the morning getting some things done online, then surrendered my computer to a big update one of my games needed to do.  I puttered around the house during the afternoon while the update poked along on our slow boonies internet.  Watched Y&R, The Connors (recorded), and then another couple episodes of The Tudors.  I think I might give up on that after the Anne Boleyn part of the story is done.

Oh!  Let me vent a strange little story.  On Wednesday there was a knock on the door, which scared the crap out of me because no one ever comes here.  It was our mail delivery person, an older lady that I find to be odd anyway and this incident just proves it.  So she had our mail in hand and started to hand it me but wouldn't let go, and said, "I think I delivered a package to the wrong box last Friday."  And she stood there looking at me.  I kinda shook my head and shrugged slightly because I didn't know if she was saying a package of mine was missing, or if we'd gotten someone else's package.

"You didn't see it then?" she finally asked.  I quickly thought back and remembered I'd gotten a tiny package on Friday, yes, but it was something I had indeed ordered.  I did not recall any other packages in recent days.  So I told her, "No, I don't remember anything odd."

"It would have been just a small package, out in the mailbox," she said and continued to stare at me, like I was lying or something.  I thought of the small package I'd received, but again, it WAS my package.  So again I told her, "No, there hasn't been anything that wasn't ours," and at this point sort of forcefully took the mail out of her hand.  She still just stood there looking at me for several more long, uncomfortable moments.

"No?" she eventually asked.
"Nope," I said.
She shook her head a bit, and after another long moment finally turned and left.

What the heck?!  We did get a package, and it was ours.  If she thinks it was meant to be at someone else's house, she's confused.  But like I said, I'm not so sure she knows what's she's doing sometimes.  Earlier this summer I noticed someone from the post office had put a sticker label inside our mailbox that has something like 'No Carol Brown' written on it.  I have no clue what that means or why it's there.  A few weeks after that showed up, one day we had like five pieces of mail there were not ours but were Kathy Brown's instead.  Kathy Brown?  Carol Brown?  What?  The address showed it was a neighbor about a half mile down the road.  I put a rubberband around it all, added a sticky note, and stuck it all back in our box.  And now this?

Weird, I tell ya.  Just weird.

Be sure to check out tomorrow's post.  I'll have a 20 question All Things Autumn tag to share.  If you'd like to participate and want the questions ahead of time, let me know!  I love doing things like questionnaires and tags.  I hope you enjoy them too.  I'm also going to start a daily thing for October where I post an old family photo from Halloweens gone by.

See you tomorrow to kick off October and all things spooky!

Thursday, September 29, 2022

Sep. 29 - Frosty Morning

It's our first window scraping, frosty morning of the season.  Love it!  It does momentarily jump my thoughts to Christmas but I'll be back in fall mode once the sun warms things up and melts away the frost.

Wednesday was a fairly okay day for me.  I ended up going to pick up a couple of prescriptions in the morning.  If you remember, I had picked one up Monday and they said two were going to be ready on Tuesday.  So that's what I went for yesterday, and once again there was inconvenience and confusion.  I ended up telling them to turn off auto-refill for all of my many prescriptions.  For whatever reason, they come up for refill at times that I'm nowhere near needing them, and I never receive any kind of notification about them.  So yeah, turn them off.  AND, they once again only gave me one insulin pen when the prescription is written for three at a time.  I didn't realize it until I got home, then sent a message to my doctor.  She said talk to the pharmacy first and if they couldn't or wouldn't correct it the doctor would then try to straighten it out.  Only getting one pen at a time, I'll be running back to the pharmacy about every three weeks.  No, no, no.

Not much else happened yesterday.  I was trying to play my game to keep getting the benefits of their apology bonuses.  I enlisted Boychild2's help with a challenging dungeon, and we went in with some other random player, which should have made things easier.  But no, this other guy had a very different play style which was taking forever to do anything.  Boychild2 was short on time because he had to get ready for work (2nd shift), so we excused ourselves after a couple rounds, and called it a day.

I did laundry yesterday, watched Y&R, and managed to watch an episode or two of The Tudors.  I don't know why I just can't get into it this time around.  My thoughts are already shifting to the pile of spooky movies I pulled out the other day, getting ready for October.  And I keep ending up on TNT channel, watching reruns of Supernatural.  Are any of you fans of that show?  Oh my gosh, I'm planning on doing a post about it one of these days.  Maybe it's fitting for October, what with all the 'supernatural' in it.  Yes, excited to do that one!

And then I played my game again after supper for a while.  Hubby had come in from the shop after 5pm, ate a bit of supper (leftovers night), and was asleep around 6pm.  So my evening was quiet and boring and I went up to bed to read.  And then had a rough night of laying awake in the wee hours and having my mind racing, bouncing from one random thought to the next.  Ugh.  Why is it that times like that seem to bring up every awkward and embarrassing thing we've done in our lives?  UGH.

Well happy Frosty Nearly October Morning to you all!

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Sep. 28 - Holiday Teas and Y&R

Tuesday was an okay day for me.  I've had this sort of full body blah feeling for a couple days now.  I don't know if it's this shift to cooler weather or what.  It's funny because I think when we're younger we all feel that old people whining about their achy bones and the weather is kind of silly.  But man, now that I'm one of those old people, I think there might really be something to it!  LOL
I spent a good part of the day just doing stuff on the computer.  I blogged, read and commented on other blogs, replied to comments on my own blog, loosely planned out some upcoming posts.  I played my game for a while, watched a couple videos, did some random internet browsing.  That random browsing had me ending up on this page . . . 
I had a post a while ago where I talked about learning to like tea lately.  Someone mentioned Sugar Plum Spice tea, and someone more recently mentioned Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride.  Well of course those sound yummy and I will be keeping my eyes open for them, but it got me wondering what other yummies there might be.  Tea is still very new to me so I'm not yet in the habit of buying it or even looking at it while shopping.  I will be now!  I think every one of those pictured are something I'm willing to try.  (There was one more at the bottom of that page, Sweet Harvest Pumpkin, but I already have that one.)  I'm excited for my next grocery shopping trip!  I have no restraint when I get excited about something new.  This could be a problem, because I'm not drinking tea nearly enough yet to warrant getting All. The. Flavors.  LOL
How many of these have you tried?
Which ones sound the yummiest to you?
Over on The Young and the Restless, something happened a couple days ago that I think was so stupid.  Anything for a dramatic story though, huh?  Even if you don't watch the show, you might still have an opinion on what happened.  So Johnny is the son of Victoria and Billy.  He is not Victoria's biological son, and he's always known that, but he doesn't know who his biological mother is.  Well, it's Chelsea, who he knows as his friend Connor's mother.  Lately Chelsea's been going through some sort of personal crisis, trying to find meaning and happiness in her life, and she's been pushing Victoria and Billy to tell Johnny about her because he's old enough now.  They didn't want to but after her constantly pleading her case they gave in.  She had been arguing that everyone around town knows the truth and wouldn't it be better for him to hear it from Victoria and Billy than hear it randomly from someone else?

Okay, I can kind of agree with that point.

So, Victoria and Billy sat Johnny down one day to talk to him.  He said yeah, he's always known she's not his biological mother and it doesn't matter to him.  They asked if he had any questions now that he's older, was there anything he wanted to talk about in relation to all that?  He said no, he's fine.  They asked if he's ever wondered who his biological mother is.  He said no.

So they told him anyway!!!

Now THAT is what pissed me off.  Whyyyyyy would you do that?  When he said no, they should have been like 'Ok, well if you ever have any questions or problems, you know you can talk to us blah blah blah.'  NOT, blurt out the news when he's just assured you he doesn't think about it.

Of course, Johnny got upset and very angry.  And of course the writers are turning this into a huge, dramatic turn of events where Victoria and Billy are now blaming Chelsea for forcing them to do this, and blaming her for the life-long damage this will do to Johnny.  Well, um, you should have stopped when he said he wasn't interested!  You should have gone back to Chelsea and said it's not time yet!  Ohhh, it just makes me so mad.

LOL Yes, I know it's just a cheesy soap opera and writing on those shows is never stellar, but wow.

Okay, I have to get this posted and get some things done today.
Hope you're all doing well as these last days of September tick by.

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Sept. 27 - Just A Normal Monday

I went to my mom's yesterday, my usual Monday routine.  I'd thought she'd want to go along this week since she'd mentioned it a couple times in recent weeks, but nope.  I was secretly glad because I wasn't feeling great and had some extra stops to make so I just wanted to be quick about it all.
I stopped at Dollar Tree for her.  Since the price has gone up to $1.25 there, I've been trying to convince her it's no longer the best place to get the things she always used to like getting there.  Well, let's be real, a lot of stuff was never a good deal even when it was only $1.00.  But there are still a few things I'll stop there for, like greeting cards and batteries for all her many little light-up knicknacks.  I was looking for a couple craft items I've been considering playing around with but that particular store didn't have any of what I was looking for.
Popped over to the local grocery store next.  I still go to Walmart for my own groceries because it's cheaper, but I really do like this grocery store that I go to for Mom.  I really would like to switch my own shopping over to this place but can't seem to fully commit.  It's half the distance.  The selection is better, and they carry more local things.  And you can still get normal sized packages of things, unlike Walmart which seems to have gone to ginormous size for everything.  I understand the idea of buying in bulk but when it's just two people, that monster size box of cereal or whatever will be stale before it's finished.  The thing that keeps stopping me though is the prices.  And I understand too that it sort of evens out in that I'm not spending the extra money on gas, and it's a local, family run business vs. the beast that Walmart is, but I don't know . . . just can't seem to switch.
Wow, anyway!  Got her groceries then hopped over to Walgreens to pick up a prescription.  They had that one ready and said there were two more that would be ready tomorrow (today now), so did I want to wait and they'd get those ready?  I had a car full of groceries and the pharmacy was very busy, so I decided not to wait.  I'll just go back today or tomorrow and get them.  She didn't mention what those two were and I didn't ask because I have so many that something is always coming up for refill.  I think I've mentioned in a previous post that in my year so far with diabetes, trying to get the pharmacy kinks worked out is quite aggravating.  I think I need to tell them to just take everything off auto-fill.  Here I am, rambling again.
Back to my mom's after shopping and we settled in to play Yahtzee.  Now, she's 86 and not as sharp as she used to be but she seemed really scatterbrained at times yesterday.  It was almost alarming.  Sometimes I wonder if I'm too close to the situation to really see possible changes?  Or will it be me who DOES see the signs of change?  It's a burden I don't like either way.
Back home in the afternoon, I was still feeling kinda of blah, so I tried to just relax and get caught up on some things on the DVR but ended up playing one of my online games for a while instead.
This is Wizard101 and it was originally meant to be a kids game.  I think way more adults actually play though, especially since only the lowest handful of areas are free to play.  I've been playing off and on for maybe ten years already.  Hubby started playing several years ago but usually only plays during the colder months when he's not working in his shop as much.
This is my character in her plain looking dorm room.  I have her dressed in fall colors for now, and will switch her to Halloween colors this weekend.  I haven't decorated her room at all yet.  I'll probably try to do that this weekend too.  I have a hard time decorating in this game, even though housing stuff is one of my favorite things in any game I play.  LOL

There was a game related incident last week.  A disgruntled employee hacked some servers or something and was posting a bunch of very inappropriate comments that would pop up on the screen for all to see.  I didn't actually see any of that, only heard about it afterwards.  They had to actually shut the game down to stop him and regain control.  As an apology, they've turned on double and bonus everything . . . training points, supply gathering, quest rewards.  So I've really been wanting to play as much as I can during this time.  Still not playing as much as I'd hoped, but a bit more than I'd otherwise be on.  It's a fun distraction, and a cute way to pass some lonely afternoons.

And that was about it for my Monday.  I have no plans for today, so I'm hoping to get a few small things done and then sit down to more gameplay.

Hope your week is off to a good start!
Has it cooled off by you yet?
If you live in an area that gets fall colors, has it started yet?

Melted - Apple Spiced Poundcake (Better Homes & Gardens)

Apple Spiced Poundcake - 'Nutmeg, cinnamon, clove, apple, poundcake, and brown sugar.'

Another apple scent for these early days of fall.  I don't remember ever seeing this one, and grabbed it with barely a sniff in the store.  Apples for fall, and bakery because it's my favorite type . . . yes, please.  I will say, on cold sniff this is a little bland, almost plastic-y.  Melted though, this blooms nicely.  It's mainly a nice bakery scent of warm poundcake.  The spices are not sharp, they're just helping warm up and boost that cake note.  I wish there was more apple though.  There is only a slight hint of it.  Still a very nice bakery scent though overall.

I melted two cubes (about 0.8 oz. worth) in my tea light warmer and had medium scent and throw.

There is not enough apple in this to truly make it a fall sent for me, but I would buy this again just to have as a nice anytime scent.

Monday, September 26, 2022

Sep. 26 - Frustrated Again


It was a fairly leisurely weekend around here.  I did my shopping Saturday morning, and hubby took groceries over to his dad and played cards with him for a while.  Our normal routine at this point.  Boychild1 was here to do laundry Saturday morning.  His friend was here with him because they were going to go do something after laundry.  His friend is like a third son to us.  He and Boychild1 have been best friends since they were seniors in high school, sometime around there.  They've had a couple falling outs over the years but they eventually start hanging out again.

Anyway, when hubby got home later Saturday afternoon he didn't feeling like working in his shop so we ended up playing Yahtzee and watching TV the rest of the day.

Sunday morning I made the last of the apple-cinnamon pancake mix that I'd bought at Walmart a while ago.  They were quite yummy.  Not the greatest choice for me, I know, but I limit my portion and only use a tiny bit of syrup.  I denied myself pretty much all fun fall treats last year because I was newly diagnosed and living in fear.  Not this year!

Hubby went out to his shop for a while after breakfast.  I did the dishes and got the kitchen cleaned up, then started laundry.  I played Wizard101 (fun online game with wizards and duels and adventures) for a while during the morning.  Hubby was back in the house before noon, we had lunch, then settled in for football the rest of the day.  And we played many more games of Yahtzee.  It's becoming a favorite thing to do lately.

Minion continues to heal.  Personality- and activity-wise, he is completely back to normal.  Physically, the injury to his butt is still very much there and disturbing to catch a glimpse of when he walks by with his tail up in happy-cat-pose.  The vet never really did say if it will all settle back into a normal looking cat butt, or if this will be his look from now on.  Hopefully the hair will grow back and mask it more.  He's got a bald patch from all the licking he's done.

That was about it for the whole weekend.  Really nothing to blog about, and I've been feeling frustrated with blogging again anyway.  I try to keep a frame of mind where I'm doing this because I enjoy it, that it will be a record of my life for me to look back on later.  I try to not compare myself to others, whether in their lives or in their blogs.  It's hard though!  I absolutely know now that the true heart of why I do this is for interaction.  Part of getting going in blogging again is reading other blogs and making connections.  I've been doing that.  I've found blogs that I'm quite enjoying.  But this also puts me in a spot where I'm seeing all these other lives that are once again so much more interesting and blog-worthy than mine.  I don't have grandkids to gush over and brag about.  I don't take trips anywhere fun.  I don't have a beautifully curated and well kept home to share.  I just feel sooooo blah.  I shouldn't feel that way, and when I don't spend time seeing other peoples' lives I feel way more peaceful and content about my own boring situation.

But how to balance all this and still find enjoyment in blogging?

The easiest way would be to stop reading other blogs.  I think I function better under the grand illusion that I already have a decent sized, dedicated following.  It's so much easier that way, to get excited about things I'd like to post and plans I have for my little space on the internet.

And then it all comes back to why, why, WHY can't I just do things simply and find enjoyment?  Mopey posts like this every week certainly aren't going to have people wanting to hang around.

It's just me shooting myself in the foot.

Sunday, September 25, 2022

Melted - Apple Buttered Rum (Mainstays)

Apple Buttered Rum - 'Capture the joy of holiday baking in this scrumptious blend of golden delicious apples, sliced pears, apple rum and aromatic spices.'
I think this is a new scent this year, so of course I had to try it.  I often like rum scents but wasn't sure what to expect with apple in it.  It was interesting.  This is not very apple-y.  No, the warm almost buttery notes of rum are the bulk of this scent.  There is some soft spice, and the fruit note is buried deep down inside.  This is definitely one for cooler weather and cozy homes.

I melted half of this 1.25 oz. pack and had medium-strong scent and throw.

This is a bit of a heavy, stuffy scent, not one of my favorites.  And since there is little apple to be found, I probably wouldn't buy this one again.

Melted - Warm Apple Pie (Mainstays)

Warm Apple Pie - 'Orchard apples, red pear and orange zest, embraced at the heart with cranberry, nutmeg, clove and allspice. Cinnamon stick, graham cracker crust and vanilla add a touch of decadence at the bottom.'
It often cracks me up, all the extra notes that go into building what seems to be a fairly basic scent.  Like, smelling this before ever reading that description, it was a really good warm and syrupy apple scent.  Looking at the description now and smelling it again, I can pick out the hints of cranberry and orange.  It's just funny.
Anyway, this is a wonderful scent for fall, for when the weather finally starts to cool off.  It's such a cozy, homey scent with those baked apples and warm spices, thick with syrup, and the slight trace of bakery note from the crust.  It does turn into a bit more of a warm bakery scent when melted, seems a bit more fruity on cold sniff.  This Mainstays version is not quite as 'deep' as Better Homes & Gardens or Scentsationals, it does have a bit of a waxy side note, but in a pinch it's still quite nice.
I melted half of this 1.25 oz. pack and had medium-strong scent and throw.
While I do prefer BHG and Scentsationals, I would buy this again to have in my fall scent stash.

Friday, September 23, 2022

Sep. 23 - Nothing Much Really

I realized too late that I had nothing in mind for today's post.  I guess we're just going to wing it.
I picked up two new books recently.  This one, called Gallant, is described as:
'Olivia Prior has grown up in Merilance School for Girls, and all she has of her past is her mother’s journal—which seems to unravel into madness. Then, a letter invites Olivia to come home to Gallant. Yet when Olivia arrives, no one is expecting her. But Olivia is not about to leave the first place that feels like home; it doesn’t matter if her cousin Matthew is hostile, or if she sees half-formed ghouls haunting the hallways. 
Olivia knows that Gallant is hiding secrets, and she is determined to uncover them. When she crosses a ruined wall at just the right moment, Olivia finds herself in a place that is Gallant—but not. The manor is crumbling, the ghouls are solid, and a mysterious figure rules over all. Now Olivia sees what has unraveled generations of her family, and where her father may have come from. 
Olivia has always wanted to belong somewhere, but will she take her place as a Prior, protecting our world against the Master of the House? Or will she take her place beside him?
New York Times–bestselling author V. E. Schwab crafts a vivid and lush novel that grapples with the demons that are often locked behind closed doors. An eerie, stand-alone saga about life, death, and the young woman beckoned by both. Readers of Neil Gaiman, Holly Black, Melissa Albert, and Garth Nix will quickly lose themselves in this novel with crossover appeal for all ages.'
They say it's a middle grade book, and I'm okay with that.  I like middle grade and YA, and a variety of genres.  Middle grade books are great when you're in a slump, or stressed so much you can't focus on something more intense.  And this has some spookiness for reading in October.  I'm currently reading The Toll, by Neal Schusterman, the third in the Scythe trilogy.  I'm struggling with it though and would like to put it aside and start this book instead but I'm afraid I'll never go back and finish The Toll then.
I also got this Burn After Writing journal.  This looks so fun!  It reminds me of the Sign In books my sister and I used to love doing when we were young.  The back cover reads:
'Instagram, WhatsApp, Snapchat, TikTok, VSCO, YouTube...the world has not only become one giant feed, but also one giant confessional. Burn After Writing allows you to spend less time scrolling and more time self-reflecting. Through incisive questions and thought experiments, this journal helps you learn new things while letting others go. Imagine instead of publicly declaring your feelings for others, you privately declared your feelings for yourself?
Help your heart by turning off the comments and muting the accounts that drive you into jealousy for a few moments a night. Whether you are going through the ups and downs of growing up, or know a few young people who are, you will flourish by finding free expression--even if through a few tears!
Push your limits, reflect on your past, present, and future, and create a secret book that's about you, and just for you. This is not a diary, and there is no posting required. And when you're finished, toss it, hide it, or Burn After Writing.'
There are past, present, and future sections with questions and prompts.  Some are just Quick Fire lists where you check off things you've done.  Some are funny like 'People I'd like to punch in the face.'  Some are a bit tougher like 'The one relationship I would like to fix.'  There are some This or That type lists, like 'rich -or- famous' where you just circle your choices.  There are 147 pages, so plenty to have some fun for a while.  I think I'd like to get another one and do it again in like five years, then go back and compare.  It's kinda cool too because the same book comes in different cover designs so you can pick one that you like.  This purple with cats on it screamed to me.  lol
Nothing much exciting happening around here at the moment.  Oh, we got our notice from the county that it's time to have our septic system pumped and inspected.  I don't know what it's like elsewhere but it has to be done every three years here and on file with the county.  So hubby and I had to dig out the area that covers the one man-hole cover so they can do what they need to do when they get here.  (There is one above ground, and one about a foot underground.)  They will dig it out themselves for an extra fee but we're still able bodied enough to get that part done and save a few bucks.  LOL  So anyway, I'll have to call the septic service today to get that scheduled.
I also need to refill one of my prescriptions today.  That's one of my ongoing hassles with diabetes.  I have NINE prescriptions now and it seems none of them coordinate with each other as to when they run out or how many refills I'm allowed.  For some reason, I also don't get notifications from the pharmacy when auto refills are ready, and their system never seems to update when we (me online, pharmacist in-store) try to change that.  And sure enough, when trying to refill the prescription for needles (for the insulin pens) this morning, it said I have no refills left but they'll contact my doctor.  I should have just gone through MyChart for it.  Ugh.
But anyway, other than that, I don't really have any plans for today.  I'd like to just relax and play one of my online games a good long time.  Or maybe I'll settle in on the couch and watch The Tudors all day.  I just finished the first season yesterday.  I have seen the whole series before but after watching Becoming Elizabeth and getting back into Tudor mode, I decided to watch it again.
It's a sunny but chilly day outside.  I guess I'll see where the day takes me.

Thursday, September 22, 2022

Sep. 22 - Falling Leaves & Cooler Weather

The previous couple posts have been rather dramatic.
Let's get back to something more normal, shall we?

Today is the first official day of fall.  Yay!  But who are we kidding?  Most of us have been in fall mode since September 1 or so.  At least now those stubborn few can no longer deny it's here.  lol  I'm still not quite ready for pumpkins or Halloween things though.  That will wait till October 1 for me.

We have a cold front moving in here in my area of Wisconsin.  We were at 80 degrees on Tuesday, but we'll be in the 60s or upper 50s during the day for the next week or so, and down to the 40s and even some 30s at night.  I think we'll go back up to 70s for a while yet after this but for now, I love it!  The furnace kicked on again this morning and it just makes everything seem so cozy.  It also helps move the scent from my wax warmer around more.  I have apple-cinnamon scent going as I write this.

I posted my fall decor pics last week ( HERE ), and yesterday I took a walk around our yard while I was outside tending bird feeders.  Thought I'd get a few pics of the early fall scenery around here.  This first pic is looking south-west across our yard and the fields across the road.  Starting to get some color change over there.

This is looking east across our yard and the fields behind our house.  Part of the field is some of our property, rented out to the farmer.  You can see some color changes starting on the south (right) side of that bigger tree and in the tall grass/weeds between the yard and field.
Falling leaves have already begun scattering across the yard.  We don't rake ours.  They get chopped up and scattered as we mow, and we let nature take its course.  When the boys were younger we'd sometimes rake some up to fill those pumpkin looking trash bags.  Maybe . . . maaaaaybe . . . I'll try doing that again this year.  I really would like to decorate outside for Halloween.  Haven't done that in years either.
I noticed these mushrooms growing all around the area that we had a tree taken down years ago.  Not sure what's going on with that. Anyone know about mushrooms?  I like the picture though, with the leaf in front and our old shed in back.
And here is our big old farmhouse, viewed from our driveway.  The house was built in something like 1902.  The year is scratched into the old cistern in the basement.  A lot of times from the inside I get angry and frustrated with the old beast.  When I stop and look at it from the outside though, I'm often in love with it.  This is the north side so it looks dirty from that green stuff that tends to accumulate on all north-side surfaces.  We keep saying we'll get the pressure washer out and take care of it but at this point I think it would be worth it just pay the money and have someone come and do it for us.  lol  Also, I don't have as much fall decor outside as I'd like.  There are a few things on the porch but can't really be seen in this pic.  Like I said, I'd really like to decorate outside for Halloween, so I'll hopefully have more pics to share in October.
Back inside, I was doing more coloring recently.  These are more fall themed, not Halloween like the other ones I had shown.  I'm just trying to figure out what colors I want to use for this one.  I'll stamp more and make them into another set of notecards or maybe just some regular greeting cards.
I have a bunch of things I'd like to get done today.  I'm behind schedule now after all that drama with Minion.  One of the things I'd like to do today is work on some fall and Halloween tags.  Would anyone reading this be interested in doing some with me, like a collab?
Hope you are all well!

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

Sep. 21 - Ohhhh, Minion

This guy, I tell ya! We thought we might lose him over the weekend, and what it turned out to be had us shaking our heads like 'Why you gotta be so extra extra, Minion?!' Let me explain.

Minion and I have our routines throughout the day. In the morning after I eat a bit and tidy up a few things I sit down at my computer to check email, blog, etc. There is a second computer desk right behind me that is rarely used these days. I always turn that computer chair around, facing out, and Minion will hop up into that one (he has a cozy blanket there) and will sleep the morning away while I do computer stuff. Well, last week Thursday I noticed he failed in his attempt to hop up into the chair. I laughed it off and helped him up and didn't think much more of it at the time.
The rest of that day, he slept a bit more than usual but still got up now and then to eat.

Friday he slept waaaaaay more than usual. I don't remember if he even went into the computer chair in the morning. He did get up and eat a couple times but ate smaller amounts. When I tried to pick him up at one point, he really didn't like it and sort of cried out. I mentioned it to hubby when he got home from work. That evening we noticed Minion licking his butt a few times. We wondered if he was constipated, as he sometimes seems to be. I started looking online for tips on how to ease it.

Of course problems always seem to happen or worsen on the weekends. Saturday was the worst day. He was up and about for breakfast but obviously feeling worse, walking sort of stiff and hunched. As the day went on he just stopped getting up, just slept, did NOT want to be touched. In the small town, rural area we live, the vet clinics are also small. None are open on the weekends and we have to go elsewhere for true emergencies. We weren't sure we were quite at crisis level yet, so I put in an appointment request online to get him in as soon as possible. Late in the day Saturday, he got out of his bed like something had startled him, started moving around more but was also licking his butt a lot more and seemed very bothered by it.

Sunday morning he seemed to be improving already, was up and around a bit more but didn't eat much. Still seemed bothered by his butt though. By evening he was doing even better.

Monday he seemed very much improved but was still licking his butt and when I ventured a peek at it, well, I was sorry it did. In my brief glance it sort of looked like a hemorrhoid. But he was awake more, eating more, moving around more, being social again.

Finally, Tuesday (yesterday) morning he was able to be seen by the vet. And what was the problem? A ruptured anal gland. Eeeuw! Ouch! (Thinking back about how he sort of startled out of bed Saturday afternoon and started improving after, I wonder if that's when it actually, finally ruptured.)  The vet said it's hard to know what caused it. Constipation could possibly cause it but he didn't feel anything hard or backed up in Minion. He also said a ruptured gland is uncommon in cats. And THAT'S why I say Minion's just gotta be special! lol

A bit of history about this goofy cat . . .

We're used to having stray cats taking up residence in our shed or barn (before it was rebuilt), sometimes having kittens, and eventually moving on. One summer morning in July 2011, we discovered this tiny little thing climbing the screen of the living room window on the front porch. Climbing and yelling, making his presence very well known. We checked the area and didn't see a momma cat or siblings, and brought this demanding little thing into the house. We kept an eye out for any other cats outside, thinking we'd reunite him, but never saw any others. And that's how we adopted Minion.
Shortly after, I noticed he had a sore or an injury on the front of his chest. We got him into the vet pretty quick to have it looked at, and to have a general exam. The sore happened to be a fly larva which was embedded into his skin. What the freak?! The vet said it was rather common in barn cats and strays, nothing to worry about, but I'd never heard of such a thing. They removed it and cleaned the wound and everything was fine. But I mean geez, I've had a lot of cats in my life and none have had the weird experiences this crazy character has!

So anyway, back to his vet appointment yesterday. They gave him an enema to flush him out, said everything looks okay there. They put something like hemorrhoid cream on his butt, gave him a shot for pain/inflammation that should last about 3 days, and a shot of antibiotics that should last about 2 weeks. They said it should heal within about two weeks, usually heals up quicker than that. And they said we can give him a bit of Miralax with his food twice a day while he heals, to keep things soft and moving.
When he wasn't feeling well he would walk with his tail down. Now that he's feeling better he holds his tail up like normal and that offers a view of the very disturbing looking injury. Bleah! I try not to look at him if he's ahead of me. LOL
Today, Wednesday, he's definitely feeling mostly back to normal. He's making up for lost time, when he wasn't eating or moving around, because he's eating like crazy, very vocal, able to get on the counter and knock things off in his 'Feed me!' demands. He's refusing to settle for his all-morning nap too.

But at least he got some sweet new Halloween toys out of the whole deal.

Now just stop being dramatic, kittycat!!

Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Sep. 20 - An Anniversary


A year ago today, September 20, hubby called an ambulance for me and my life was forever changed.  I'd been wanting to do a nice long, in depth post recalling that whole adventure but some other things going on around home at the moment got me all distracted.  I'll do a condensed version instead.
I'd been sick for a few days already before it got to the point of the ambulance.  Hubby had been sick too but his was completely different than mine.  He had the coughing and aches associated with c*vid, yet for whatever reason, we never connected that he might actually have it.  Mine had no cough and was nausea, fatigue, just a very strong 'not right' feel.  I'd been in bed two days by the time we decided I needed to go in.
In the ambulance, taking vitals and getting an IV ready, they asked if I was diabetic.  I said, "Not that I know of."  They said they were pretty sure I was because my blood sugar was high.  In the emergency room, I was asked again.  They also asked about c*vid.  They tested for both, and told me that yes, I had c*vid and I was diabetic.
Well, okay then.
It was ketoacidosis that had me feeling so awful and had put me in the hospital.  They admitted me that evening and I spent the first night in ICU getting a 12 hour insulin drip through IV.  They had to check my blood sugar every hour.  I'd barely slept the past couple days when I was sick in bed but pretty quickly fell asleep at the hospital, I think because of relief from feeling safe now, or just pure exhaustion.  I was moved into my own room the next morning, after the insulin IV, and thought maybe I'd go home later that day.

Nope!  My c*vid progressed to pneumonia and I spent a total of 13 days in the hospital, most of those days on oxygen.

In my original post on one of my failed blogs a year ago, I had posted:
'The diabetes part of it all was not what kept me in the hospital so long. In a weird way I'm glad I found out I was diabetic this way instead of being told in a doctor's office after some tests. I would have just broken down and bawled my eyes out, feeling like a failure, like I was being scolded and punished. This way, finding out in the emergency room with so many other things going on, it sort of cushioned the blow. And having to stay in the hospital allowed time to learn about it and have people show me how to do the blood sugar checks and insulin shots. While it was a huge source of hassle and frustration at times, I'm glad I had that time to slowly absorb the shock of my new reality and learn how to do the things I need to do. It was also amazing to find out how many of the nurses and other staff that I met along the way also have diabetes. They offered tips and information about their own journeys, and that has helped.'

I still feel that way.

I suppose I should mention some things.  Before this, I was not a person who went to the doctor.  It had to be something bad enough to send me to Urgent Care before I'd go.  I did not have a primary care provider.  Diabetes does run in my family.  My dad did not have it but I think all of his siblings did.  And in the 8-10 months or so leading up to my trip to the hospital I had lost a little over 80 pounds.  Looking back, I had all the signs but when you're actually in a situation it's not always as clear.  You know, the whole 'can't see the forest for the trees' thing.  Or just plain ol' denial perhaps.  People I'd mentioned it to during those months before all seemed to think it was a thyroid thing and I think I sort of latched onto that.  But no, it was diabetes.

I've learned a lot in this past year, including how messed up some of the systems and processes are.  For example, when I was originally diagnosed in the hospital they said I was Type 2.  Everyone was encouraging and saying I'd hopefully be off insulin soon and onto oral meds.  At my 3-month check up everything was looking fabulous.  My doctor (I have now a primary care provider!) was amazed at how well things got turned around.  My A1c in the hospital was something like 16.1.  At this checkup it was down to 6.7!  She felt sure that if things still looked this good in 3 more months she'd go ahead and try me on oral meds.

Ohhhh, but wait . . . 

On second thought, she wanted to test to see if I actually had Type 1 diabetes.  She said the way it all happened to me didn't seem like Type 2.  I asked why they didn't test for that right away, why would they tell me I'm Type 2?  She said it's just sort of an assumption that anyone diagnosed in adulthood is Type 2.  I found that oddly disturbing.  My son even said that seems like irresponsible doctoring, like if you have cancer and they just lump you into lung cancer because it's 'common.'  It kind of made mad.

Turns out I am indeed Type 1.  To be more specific, I am LADA 'Type 1.5 being managed as Type 1.'  This means I will be on insulin the rest of my life, no matter how well controlled my diabetes may be.  As crushing as this blow was, I'm grateful that my doctor had a hunch to check further into my situation.  Type 1's need to be on insulin from the get-go.  If we'd continued on thinking I was Type 2 and she'd switched me to oral meds, it could have led to earlier complications and other things.  This now makes me even more angry about the way they test and assume it's Type 2 in adults.  I think they should do it the opposite way, rule out Type 1 first.

I've also found some confusing things in the insurance process.  Like, I was given a referral to a year's worth of meetings with a Diabetes Educator.  I went to the first one and then found my insurance doesn't cover it.  Why not?!  Seems pretty freakin' important to me!  I don't know what I'd have done without those 13 days in the hospital giving me time learn what I needed to start this new life.  If I'd just been told in a doctor's office, given prescriptions for supplies and sent on my way . . . good lord!  

And another thing with insurance, I'm finding they really don't like paying for the needles for insulin pens or the lancets for finger poking.  I find it baffling that needles are not even an automatic part of the insulin pen package.  What good is the pen without the needle?  I strongly suspect insurance companies want diabetics to wear the CGM (continuous glucose monitor) and insulin pump because it cuts down on the amount of needles and lancets.  An extremely unfair opinion.  Unless you're living with the condition, don't be judging what's right for those who are!

There is so much more I'd wanted to say and I'm kicking myself for not prepping this post ahead of time, but maybe now that I've gotten to this 1st Anniversary post, maybe I'll talk more about my diabetes life now.  It's something I'd been holding back on somewhat.

But anyway, I'm already getting long-winded so I'll end here, and hope you are all doing well.
The day I went home.

Sunday, September 18, 2022

Sep. 18 - Halloween Notecards


The internet problems continued Friday during the morning.  I was chatting online with Boychild2, trying to find a new modem/router to order, and he kept saying I should just call our provider.  Well, dealing with customer service of any kind is high on my list of Most Dreaded Things.  Actually, it's probably top of the list.  And our internet provider is CenturyLink, which is NOTORIOUS for being difficult and useless.  But I eventually got so mad Friday morning that I did call them to see if there were better options in my rural area.  No, there aren't.  Then she switched me to another agent who tried to sell me DishTV.  What?  I hung up.  So it was back to buying a new modem/router, which I never did complete.  Will need to try and finish that chore today.  I don't even remember the rest of the day, I was so worked up about that and other things.

Oh, hubby got his truck back from the garage Friday after work.  The original problem was some sensor thing, but he had them go ahead and do brakes and new tires while it was already there, get it ready for winter.  So $1900 later, he's got his truck back.  Definitely not a bill we need right now but hey, is it any better now or sometime later?

Saturday morning I did my usual grocery shopping.  Walmart is already getting Christmas stuff out.  It seems to happen earlier every year!  It's not out in the main part of the store yet, but it looked like a full crew working in that seasonal/outdoor room, hurrying to get the shelves switched over to Christmas.  They barely have their fall and Halloween stuff out yet!  I did a very quick glance at the Christmas stuff as I headed for the bird seed in the back corner, then beat it out of there.  I'm not ready for that quite yet.

Hubby went to his dad's as usual when I got home, took his groceries over to him and played cribbage for a while.  He said his brother stopped in as an afterthought for like a five minute visit.  He'd been in the area at someone else's place.  It frustrated hubby again.  And then his dad told him he didn't have to stay and play cards each week, he shouldn't feel obligated.  When hubby told me this later I said, "Did you tell him you need to stay each week because you need to learn how to play cribbage?"  Doh!  LOL  I pick on him because his dad wins nearly every time they play.

While he was over there, I spent some time working on new Halloween card ideas.  I finished two other sets of notecards earlier in the week.
I love this dragon stamp!  I've used it in the past in a variety of color themes, such as orange/red for fall, red/white for peppermint/Christmas, and black/orange for Halloween.  With House of the Dragon being so popular right now I thought it would be fun to do a dragon theme Halloween notecard set.  I also used a new Halloween embossing folder that I recently got.
Packaged the set up all spooky festive, and moved on to the next set.

I'd already had these bat panels done and just laying around.  They are stenciled, colored in various Halloween colors.  I went ahead and stamped out some sentiment strips and assembled some more simple cards.
Bundled those up too, and will get both sets in our Etsy shop soon.  I'll try to get a pic of the new ones I'm working on today.  Might work on some fall themed ones today too while we watch football.
Hubby and I are heading out to Menards bright and early this morning.  Bird seed is on sale so we want to grab some for us, his dad, and my mom.  He also needs a new chainsaw blade, and I want to browse the fall stuff, see if anything needs to come home with me.  hehe
How is your weekend going?

Friday, September 16, 2022

Sep. 16 - Fall Decor


Ugh, nothing but internet problems half the day yesterday and all morning so far today.  Well, actually it seems fairly okay for the moment so I'm trying to hurry and get this post done before it all goes to heck again.  As I've mentioned many times, we live in the country and have very poor internet.  On top of that, the modem/router we have is many years old and probably well outdated.  We stopped using the ones from our internet provider because they have to be leased and can't be bought.  So now, of course, they won't do anything about problems on our side.  Yeah, I need to start shopping for a new one.

But anyway, yesterday was a fairly okay day.  I got laundry done and a few random things around the house.  Managed to watch a couple episodes of The Tudors without my mind wandering to other things and having to rewatch what I'd blanked out on.  Then spent the late afternoon and evening getting progressively more irate as the internet refused to cooperate.
I did manage to take pics of my fall decor yesterday.  I don't think many people saw yesterday's post where I mentioned that though, because I posted three Melted posts after it and I think most people just go to the most recent post.  But anyway, got the pics taken and want to share them today.  Hopefully the internet behaves long enough to get them uploaded.

The buffet is one of the main places that I decorate.  (Well, except for the tree at Christmas.)  I don't have a lot of 'early fall' decor and I like it that way.  I've definitely moved to more minimal ways in recent years.
A closer view of what's on the buffet.  This is the first year I've included those Mary's Moo Moos figurines in my decor.  I've had them for a million years but they used to be in a curio cabinet, and then were in storage for a ton of years.  The fuzzy looking blob on the right is an apple that a family friend made a couple years ago.  It's actually made from a sock, stuffed with rice and filler, stick for a stem, and felt leaf attached.  My September theme for fall is apples, acorns, leaves . . . not pumpkins.  Not sure if you can see it but on the far left, there are sunflowers embroidered on the runner/doily thing.  An old bloggy friend did that herself and gifted it to me several years ago.

This is a spot on top of my big old computer desk, right above where I sit and work.  There is a smaller blob apple, made by the same girl, and some Dollar Tree flowers and vase filler balls.  That photo is my grandparents on their wedding day.  My grandpa died before I was born, but I was very close to my grandma.  That thing behind the photo is an ancient little wooden rocking chair with plastic greenery in the seat.  My mom had that for years while I was growing up and I just sort of took it along with me when I moved out.  The photo and little rocking chair stay there year-round.
By they way, I am not at all good with flower arrangements.  I'm actually getting away from even using them in my decor these days.  I kinda like how this particular mess looks though, like a handful of wild stems clipped and stuffed in an old mason jar.
Fall themed pot holders hanging by the stove.
Sunflower, ceramic apple, and little wooden sign on a white picket fence shelf that hubby made for me last year.  (Click on the photo, any photo, for a larger, better view.)  On the counter below is a little picket fence type bucket with an apple on it.  I think I got it at Walmart several years ago.  I just put our little mason jar 'pencil cup' inside it.  This is on the kitchen counter right next to the sink.  The pencil cup being there is random now but dates back to when the old landline phone was on this wall.  I'd like to someday put a utensil crock here instead, just haven't made it happen yet.
On the kitchen table I have this little arrangement.  It's just a small towel that I got many years ago but it's too small to use as a kitchen towel so it's just decor now.  A fake apple, of course.  That large fall themed ribbon was on a plant hubby's coworkers sent last year when I got out of the hospital.  I saved it and just put it around this plant that sits on the table.  (That's the struggling snake plant, Maggie.  lol) (And that's my Vikings hoodie in the background, Carrie.  Skol!)
This is the door into our kitchen.  When you come in the back door there is a decent sized room, mudroom I guess some would call it, and then another door to get into the actual house.  On the right is the door down to the basement.  Anyway, the Welcome sign on the left is many years old, probably from Walmart or Menards.  The little owl bell on the right is from an old bloggy friend, years ago, the same friend who did the sunflower embroidery.
In the living room, in front of the TV are a couple more fake apples and five crocheted leaves that my mother-in-law made me several years ago.  And two Vikings helmets that stay there through football season.
This corner of the living room is the other main place that I decorate.  For most of the year these shelves are filled with old family pictures, such as wedding photos of parents, grandparents, great grandparents.  I should take pics of it sometime.  But for now it's in fall mode.  This is at the large doorway between the living room and dining room (although no longer used as a dining room).  There is a leaf/acorn garland from Dollar Tree on each side, and a wooden leaf garland from Target across the top (same as the one over the buffet in the first pic).  The three sparkly leaves are from Walmart, many years old, and the sign on the right is from Dollar Tree a year or two ago.  You can kinda glimpse my curio cabinet through the doorway to the left.
Closer view of the top shelf.  The apple on the left is actually fairy garden decor from Dollar Tree, but I just turned it around so you don't see the little door and windows.  The scarecrow is many years old, from Walmart.  The leaf and 2 acorns were crocheted by my mother-in-law.  The wooden leaf is new this year, from Dollar General.  And another fake apple on the right.  I'd bought a bag of various sized ones from Target a few years ago. 
The second shelf.  Another leaf and acorn from my mother-in-law, another fake apple, another little wooden sign from either Walmart or Dollar Tree, and that new bottle from Dollar Tree that I showed in a post a while ago.  On the left, that gnome is another gift from that same old bloggy friend.  And on the right is a Dollar Tree candle shaped like an acorn.  It has no scent and I won't burn it.  I just got it because it's actually hard to find acorn and apple things.
Third shelf.  Those two goofy birds in their fall colors used to go to the farmers market with us towards the end of the season and sit by the feeders hubby had made.  The ceramic acorn on the left is from Menards last year, I think.  Another leaf from my mother-in-law.  Another acorn candle from Dollar Tree. 
And the bottom shelf is my small fox collection.  I put them here because of their fall colors, hehe.  I'd love to get more fox things and keep them out all year but that orange color just screams fall to me.
And that is my fall decor and how I placed it this year.  Hope you enjoyed the tour!