Sunday, November 10, 2019

Sunday, November 10, 2019, M.n

I spent most of the day yesterday working on a sewing project - can’t mention it here or it would give away my Christmas gift secret. I had fun doing it - it’s been long time since I’ve had the space to get out the sewing machine, ironing board, and spread out a pattern.  I started right after my late morning walk with Frisco and it 4:30pm before I was putting stuff away. Good times!

Today was spent preparing for the family to join me for dinner. I had a yearning for Ham and Bean Soup and that really shouldn’t take up that much time but it seems like I was at it all day. For dessert, I made homemade chocolate pudding using one of Martha Stewart’s recipes.  I feel like you just can’t go wrong with her recipes and this one proved to be quite good too. It was a bit of a pain to make since it had to be whisked from the dry ingredients (sugar, cocoa, and cornstarch) through adding 2.5 cups of milk very gradually and then all through the cooking process, bringing to a slow boil, and then  during the 1 minute of thickening. It was worth it though - everyone loved it!

I was a little worried about them all making it home on the snowy, slippery roads but they are pros and had no problems. There wasn’t much but the roads looked pretty slick. And now I am slitting back, drinking the last glass of wine from the bottle. Dinner was a success, it was fun having the family here to join me, and now I’m tired and ready for bed. Life is good.

The little busy bodies - always crafty and creative.

Friday, November 8, 2019

Friday, November 8, 2019, MN

It has been quite wintry around here this week. One morning, I walked on snow covered sidewalks, another was a cold and windy 24 degrees.  It does seem like there is much less wind early in the morning when I first walk Frisco (usually around 8am) and again around 8pm in the evening. I have managed to get out and about most days though, with a decent walk a few hours after our first. 

I have applied for a few part-time jobs at the grocery store, Target, the community that I live in, posted house-cleaning signs on the bulletin boards and community web portal.  We shall see. It seems like everywhere you go these days, there are help wanted signs posted. I would much prefer to have a few housecleaning jobs than to work in retail.

I finally dug out my collection of hand blown glass balls and found a way to display them in my living room window.  Check it out. It feels good to be reconnected.

Monday, November 4, 2019

Sunday, November 3, 2019, MN

Here I am writing about another week that has just flown by - not that I am so busy, it’s just that time moves so quickly these days.  

After checking my mail frequently, my CenturyLink modem showed up on Thursday, just before I had to leave to see the grandkid’s Halloween costumes. The service wasn’t scheduled to start until 5pm, so that wasn’t a real big deal.  There was quite a bit of excitement at the house - Granny and Poppa were there and they were trying to get the kids to eat something healthy before layering up for trick or treating - it is only 32 degrees out there.  Once in costume, they met up at a neighbor’s house, then the kids paraded through the nearby alley and then the door to door trick or treating commenced. The Grandparents stayed back and passed out candy at the house. 


When I got back home, I proceeded to get my internet hooked up and all went well with that. It wasn’t long and most of my devices were connected - with a nice, fast speed. I’m good now.

Around 2:15am on Friday morning, I woke to the sound of six gunshots going off - it sounded like it was right nearby and it was. I lay there waiting for the sound of emergency vehicles and just a few minutes later, the police and fire department were there. Just below my apartment, the police had the entry to the building across from me taped off and there were cop cars and police everywhere.  The news the next morning informed me that a man driving a black SUV was shot in the head as he pulled into the parking lot and the car continued to roll all through the lot and came to rest next to one of the patios at Graham Place. The female passenger in the car was shot in the leg and was taken to the hospital. They were not residents of this complex and the police feel that it was not a random shooting. The police knocked on my door later that afternoon to see if I heard or saw anything that could help with the investigation.  Highland Park Shooting

I was supposed to meet a former co-worker for lunch again this week, but she is having some construction projects done at her home and canceled. Maybe next week... 

I went to a couple of estate sales this weekend, bought and exchanged 2 hand-held shower heads (neither of them made enough of a difference), so why change? I also rearranged the living room to try to cut down on the glare of the window on the TV and I think I finally got the cozy feeling that I’ve been wanting.

Monday, October 28, 2019

Sunday, October 27, 2019, MN

It was more of the same on Friday and Saturday, when it comes to getting internet. More promises were made by various people at Upstream and Access Media 3 (installers) followed by no shows. I have now spent 3.5 days at my apartment waiting for someone to show up, so I will call on Monday to request a refund if the $75 that I already paid them and I contacted CenturyLink to go with their service - it costs twice as much but will hopefully be more reliable. 

I picked Norah up yesterday afternoon for a sleepover and we had a really nice time. We made some No-bake Chocolate Oatmeal Bars, had her favorite cheesy pasta for dinner, she had a shower, played games and read stories, took Frisco for his nightly walk, and turned it early.  This morning, we walked Frisco first thing and then had breakfast, played dominos and then went for a walk through the woods and along the river at Crosby Farm Park. I will post photos if I ever get internet again. 

She wanted to go back home, so that’s what we did. Ben was in the middle of making chili for dinner and Norah went straight up to her room for a nap. Later on when she got up, she had a fever of 103 - didn’t show any signs of being ill before that, so it must have come on quickly or perhaps that is why she wanted to go home right away.

The chili was yummy and we had the oatmeal bars for desert and then I headed back home. It was a good and busy weekend.

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Thursday, October 24, 2019, MN

The focus here over the last 2 days was in getting my internet hooked up. When I called to make the original arrangements, it was going to be a wait of 10 days before a technician could get here.  Had the previous tenant in this apartment had internet service, it could have been set up remotely but since she didn’t, a technician was necessary and the cost was $45 more than a remote install.  

An appointment was scheduled for the 9am to 1pm window.  When nobody showed up by 1pm, I called to check and learned that I was on the schedule, they were a little late.  By 6pm, I was convinced of a no-show, called and a follow-up was underway. A technical called a while later and assured me that someone would be here in the morning.  

This morning, a technician called around 9:30 to say he would be here by 11. That was a good thing, since I had an appointment at Costco for new tires at 2pm. Eleven came and no-show, 12:00 came and no-show, and 1:00 came and no-show. This sucks!  I got through to the call center and expressed my disappointment and asked for supervisor intervention and told them they have one more opportunity - 3 strikes, they are out. We shall see what tomorrow brings.

My Costco tire install went well and their customer service more than made up for my earlier experience with Upstream internet.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Tuesday, October 22, 2019, MN

A week and a half is a long break from updates and now to remember back to the highlights is a challenge.

On Friday, the 11th I packed a bag and went to have a sleepover with Ben and the girls. Jill went to visit her Grandma in Iowa and Saturday’s calendar of events for the girls had some overlaps with soccer, play dates, and gymnastics. Norah wasn’t feel well and threw up several times (Ben was feeling like she had somehow eaten gluten, as she is quite sensitive) so we weren’t sure how she would be the next day. We had the usual relaxing pizza and movie night - a slow pace because the kids are glued to the TV and Ben and I could have conversation and enjoy a beer.

We woke up in the morning to snow covered rooftops and a dusting on plants and bushes, so soccer was the first cancellation, then Norah’s invitation with a friend, followed by a kindergarten gathering in the park. So, gymnastics was it - way more manageable than the original plan.

Last week, the new loveseat that I ordered from Amazon arrived in a huge box delivered by UPS. It was hard to imagine a large piece of furniture fitting in that box. I proceeded to read the directions and assemble and it all came together in about 2 hours - there were no missing parts and the directions were clear. I’m impressed, although the quality isn’t top notch, it will be just fine for me. I arranged and rearranged many times before settling in.

The REALLY BIG highlight of last week was when I went to Costco to get new tires. The Michelin’s that I have now were warrantied for 90,000 miles and I have less than 40,000 on them, so they gave me a mileage warranty credit. The cost of the tires was $679 minus a mileage credit of $293, minus a Michelin credit of $110 (for a set of 4 tires), minus the cost of installation (warranty work), equaling $294 cost to me. I was shocked but certainly pleased that Michelin stands by their warranty and I will have good, safe tires for driving on wintry roads.

From there, I went to Ikea to shop for a new duvet cover for my bed and some accessories to go with it.  I also did some Facebook Marketplace shopping a picked up a couple of bar stools ($25) and bookshelves ($35), so the place is filling up and it is time to stop bringing in stuff - I have most everything that I need now.

I was able to get outdoors and go for some nice walks in both directions along the Mississippi River, the walking and biking path is about 3 blocks from where I live.  We also went to Hidden Falls Regional Park on Sunday for a nice walk. We never did see the falls, as the trail to them is closed due to high water.

Friday, October 11, 2019

Friday, October 11, 2019, MN

I just got back from Frisco’s potty walk and it is 37 degrees with snow flurries in the air. It’s the beginning of things to come - for the next 6 months. I think I’m prepared but we shall see in a while - either way I will suck it up and keep on keeping on.

The last week has involved getting more settled, hanging a few pictures, ordering a loveseat for delivery next week. I am now in the process of getting my WIFI setup - just waiting for a call back.

We celebrated Camille and Norah’s 6th birthday on Sunday - first they had a party with friends at an art venue. Jill was a bit upset as the person in charge was late and she was waiting on a busy street with 10 little rambunctious girls and only her and Ben to keep them corralled. When she did show up, she was unprepared and unorganized and the face painter managed to cover their faces with ghouls characters rather than the pretty images you see more often.

I have managed to do a Walk Away the Pounds workout 3 days this week and since the weather was really nice, I got some good walks in - I found a great walking path along the Mississippi River that is easy to get to and a nice walk along a quiet street - only sharing the path with other walkers and bicyclists.  This is at the Two River overlook where the Minnesota River becomes part of the Mississippi River.