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De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021

Stilly River Sage 19 Oct 21 - 10:40 PM
Dorothy Parshall 19 Oct 21 - 09:03 PM
Charmion 19 Oct 21 - 12:39 PM
Sandra in Sydney 18 Oct 21 - 06:13 PM
Stilly River Sage 18 Oct 21 - 11:14 AM
Charmion 17 Oct 21 - 04:49 PM
Stilly River Sage 17 Oct 21 - 10:19 AM
Stilly River Sage 16 Oct 21 - 07:52 PM
Dorothy Parshall 16 Oct 21 - 01:48 PM
Charmion 16 Oct 21 - 12:06 PM
Stilly River Sage 16 Oct 21 - 12:14 AM
Charmion 15 Oct 21 - 08:20 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Oct 21 - 10:58 AM
Stilly River Sage 13 Oct 21 - 08:01 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 Oct 21 - 11:03 AM
Donuel 12 Oct 21 - 11:09 PM
Donuel 12 Oct 21 - 10:29 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 Oct 21 - 05:15 PM
Donuel 12 Oct 21 - 04:21 PM
Dorothy Parshall 12 Oct 21 - 04:09 PM
Stilly River Sage 11 Oct 21 - 10:00 PM
Thompson 11 Oct 21 - 07:58 AM
Sandra in Sydney 10 Oct 21 - 07:23 PM
Thompson 10 Oct 21 - 05:06 PM
Stilly River Sage 10 Oct 21 - 03:21 PM
Charmion 10 Oct 21 - 01:07 PM
Stilly River Sage 09 Oct 21 - 05:02 PM
Stilly River Sage 07 Oct 21 - 11:21 AM
Stilly River Sage 06 Oct 21 - 11:07 AM
Steve Shaw 06 Oct 21 - 04:53 AM
Stilly River Sage 05 Oct 21 - 10:06 PM
Donuel 05 Oct 21 - 05:48 PM
Steve Shaw 05 Oct 21 - 04:32 PM
Steve Shaw 05 Oct 21 - 04:27 PM
Stilly River Sage 05 Oct 21 - 03:46 PM
Dorothy Parshall 05 Oct 21 - 03:20 PM
Stilly River Sage 05 Oct 21 - 10:47 AM
Charmion 05 Oct 21 - 08:33 AM
Donuel 05 Oct 21 - 08:27 AM
Donuel 05 Oct 21 - 07:38 AM
Stilly River Sage 05 Oct 21 - 12:22 AM
Dorothy Parshall 04 Oct 21 - 07:28 PM
Charmion 04 Oct 21 - 02:50 PM
Dorothy Parshall 04 Oct 21 - 02:06 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Oct 21 - 01:00 PM
Stilly River Sage 03 Oct 21 - 03:42 PM
Stilly River Sage 03 Oct 21 - 10:34 AM
Charmion 03 Oct 21 - 08:33 AM
Stilly River Sage 02 Oct 21 - 07:59 PM
Steve Shaw 02 Oct 21 - 07:25 PM
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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Oct 21 - 10:40 PM

Dorothy, please tell R that we are all pleased to see his great progress over the last couple of weeks! And moving forward!

The new ink jet fancy six-ink printer arrived today, but before setting it up I have a couple of other recent purchases to deploy. The new two-factor authentication device, a YubiKey 5C NFC device, is now set up on several accounts. There will be a couple more, but this is a good start. And the old key from 2016 is still working and was added to a couple of other accounts to serve as the backup. It doesn't have the functionality or the C-connector (USB) of the new one, that can be also passed near the phone for authentication (the NFC part of it). Between these and the phone authentication apps it's a simple matter to add extra security to accounts making it much more difficult for a hacker to take control of an account.

With nice weather the separate dog walks have progressed; the girls in the morning, the old Lab before dinner time. The girls want a faster pace, Zeke needs a more leisurely stroll, but even he manages a mile or so per walk. My fitness tracker is happy with these separate walks also.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 19 Oct 21 - 09:03 PM

Beaver:

When I suggested to R that I was coming back to QC this week to bring the plants inside, he said he could do it. So, here I shall remain a while longer. Sent off a bin full of fabricky stuff with friend Lesley who will re-home things. And a cracked rain barrel that Stu believes can be used. Next time they come by - a couple lawn chairs with torn seats will leave - Les believes she can re-seat them!

The glorious full moon is looking in the window - just above the trees to the east! A repeat of last nights show, after a glorious fall day that started with frost (minus 2C.). I weeded most of the bed of Sorrel, picking off the wonky leaves and leaving as compost and picking a bunch of smaller leaves for cooking.

Back yard still not cut as it does not get dry!

And Robin sent about 30 old machines to the scrapper today and a bunch to an auction! Clearing space so he can utilize the rest more effectively.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 19 Oct 21 - 12:39 PM

Last night, the Stratford Concert Choir had its first rehearsal since 9 March 2020. Sixty singers turned out, and it was not quite boffo but everyone had a good time and we made some genuinely good music.

The "not quite boffo" part was down to church architecture and aging ears in the Alto section. Our interim conductor lacks the parade-ground voice of his predecessor, so much of what he said was lost on those sitting in the side aisles of the church and under the balcony at the back.

So, microphones.

As choir president, I am apparently also a stage-hand and sound technician. The church piano is wretched, so we hauled in and set up an electronic keyboard before rehearsal, and afterwards struck the set and hauled it home again. (I have room for it, so it currently lives with me.) Next week, rinse and repeat. The church has a sound system, but the provided stand microphone turned out to be inadequate; our conductor needs the clip-on wireless kind. He hates clip-on wireless microphones, so I have to talk him into it. That's my job, too.

All of us, except the conductor, wore masks the whole time, so steamed-up spectacles was the norm. The mask thing is an iron requirement, along with two-metre spacing throughout the nave.

The requirement for two metres of space between singers is actually good for the choir; it forces independence on the lazy. All of us can hear the full effect, but not the singers next and behind us -- at least not clearly enough to depend on them to feed us the notes instead of finding them for ourselves.

I slept in this morning until nearly nine-thirty. I must have been whacked. Laundry today, and pool class just before supper.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 18 Oct 21 - 06:13 PM

ASSUME = making an ASS out of U & ME, & it my case it has more than once led to the Fool's Defence - Opps, sorry I didn't think ...


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Oct 21 - 11:14 AM

Damn. The death of the fully-vaccinated Colin Powell is a real eye-opener. And I question my assumptions that the friend who died of COVID last month hadn't been vaccinated, simply because it's what killed him. I don't know his family and haven't asked, but clearly the answer could be more involved than a simple "no." Note to self: #NeverAssume. I started going back to the gym in early summer, but stopped as COVID rates rose, and had recently been thinking I might try going back. This nipped that idea in the bud.

I'm still doing the home Hinge exercise program (for several weeks I've done six days a week, my next personal challenge is to get up to seven days a week and maintain that level) and I'm changing how I walk the dogs; I took the old Labrador retriever out for a walk before dinner last night, just the two of us, and interestingly, he didn't drag behind like he does when I walk all three dogs. He trotted along beside me and noticed any time my hand moved near the fanny pack where the treats are stashed. I think he simply prefers the one-on-one companionship of walking with me (he walked as the solo dog with his former owner, Susie, for his first three years). So the plan is to walk him before dinner and walk the girls in the morning. I didn't get up early this morning, so we'll take a walk before my lunch.

I know the source of some of the dog hair and displaced furniture - this morning the 2-year-old and the 14-year-old are wrassling (somewhat different than "wrestling," this involves lots of grunting and play growls) throughout the house. Apparently obstacles like chairs and table legs add excitement to the game.

Trash made it to the curb in time today and it includes a large amount of forest floor sweepings and air filters out of the heat pumps. Every year it's interesting to mark the change from cooling to heating - we're not there yet, but soon.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 17 Oct 21 - 04:49 PM

In Kingston, Ontario, when I was a student at Queen’s University, Stilly. I could make decent money driving an Amey’s Taxi — a good thing, since I didn’t have the skills or the patience to wait tables. I quit the cab business when I realized how many students were too lazy or fumble-fingered to type their own essays. I had a portable Olivetti that cost me DM80 at Canex (the Canadian Forces version of a PX), and it was work I could do indoors that never involved drunk people.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Oct 21 - 10:19 AM

I love that you drove a taxi, Charmion. Do tell!

Picking up around here this morning. Emptying the dishwasher, moving the stuff from the sink into it, etc. Laundry. Garden. And the forest floor in the den needs sweeping.

It's time to start trimming out some of the okra stems, but they're so woody they probably need tossing over the back fence to break down at their own rate. Woody things in the compost make it harder to turn (and turning the compost is something else I need to do.) I can toss the dried out sunflowers back there also.

For the most part, it'll be a day outside.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Oct 21 - 07:52 PM

The Saturday market at my favorite discount gourmet grocery was a good one - I've loaded up on several types of vegetables and picked up some items to take over for a donation to the community fridge. Lately I've just taken garden produce but now there are a few canned goods as well.

They also had huge chicken leg quarters three to a pack in the freezer section and I sealed each individually in Foodsaver bags. Most often now I cook just a breast or leg quarter, I rarely cook an entire bird. If I bring home rotisserie chicken from Costco it's knowing that I'm going to have to make it into a number of meals and then soup stock.

This evening I have a chicken breast baking and a large acorn squash halved on a baking sheet. I love to scoop the squash out of the skin with a spoon and eat it plain, nothing added. Cook it until it's caramelized and it's pretty sweet. I'll probably shred the chicken and mix it with sliced fried onions and poblano peppers and make fajitas. There are tortillas in the freezer. It's finally feeling like cooking weather, and I was really drawn to the veggies today. There are beets simmering on the stove and cauliflower and yellow squash in the fridge.

Tomorrow is a major laundry day, since I'm going to change the bedding and put a blanket on the bed and wash the light cover I've used during the summer. We've reached that time of year when the ceiling fan doesn't need to run at night and the window can be open so cool air comes in (summer hot air isn't welcome).


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 16 Oct 21 - 01:48 PM

Beaver:

Still here and still working through the process of divesting - as energy allows. Some yard work - about 15 minutes at a time. I need to bring the shed bins up to the back porch before snow falls - another couple weeks or so. Planning for colder weather and what must be where! And whether to spend on a heater going in the house as well as in the bathroom, so it is not quite so cold when I get back. The death of the electric blanket is unfortunate; I will encourage R to look at it when I get back to QC.

R, et al, have managed to sell four more large machines thus clearing room to move and organize the rest. But he is working more than full time doing it and only goes home every 3 or 4 days to water the plants.

I am watching the forecasts carefully to get back and bring plants inside before the cold comes. It is coming here on Sunday but the wood stove will keep me toasty. Started it this morning as the cool is setting in. And rain and more rain so the back yard is still not cut.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 16 Oct 21 - 12:06 PM

Revenue Canada don’t care about any vehicle that isn’t used to earn one’s living, and I don’t plan to go back to driving taxi. So … I’ll still keep the receipts, if only out of habit.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Oct 21 - 12:14 AM

We have all had mishaps like that and they do target the pocketbook. (My transition from the 2012 Nissan Pathfinder to the 2017 Pathfinder is a very expensive example.) A lot of people would drive around with the duct tape if the radio still worked, but on a new car it would be a constant reminder of that goof. Keep your receipts, maybe it's something that can reduce your taxes. :-/

I was going to post a rant here, but I've thought better of it. It has been a busy week.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 15 Oct 21 - 08:20 PM

That NPR piece is good. In fact, I have a funeral to go to next week.

I had a stupid accident with the car on Wednesday after pool class at the Y. I was backing into the garage when the door came down (don’t ask me how), smacked the roof of the car, and tore off the satellite antenna, leaving a ragged hole about three centimetres in diameter through which the female connector of a telecom wire waved at me sadly. I patched it with duct tape, the all-Canadian panacea, and ventured into the world of autobody repairs for the first time in years.

On the recommendation of the service manager at the VW dealership, I decided on Festoso Brothers, a three-bay independent operation on the blue-collar side of Stratford. The boss is a tiny, wizened Italian guy of great age who keeps meticulous notes in little coil-bound notebooks, each numbered and paginated. His best guess is about two grand and a week in the shop, and the patient’s details are on page 25 of Book 164. Surgery will begin on Monday, 25 October.

I’m so mad at myself I could just spit.

But I know how it happened. I pushed myself through the trip to Ottawa and the burial as if in a phased operation, moving from one objective to the next. I was still wound up like a dollar watch when I got off the train on Monday night, and the next day I was so tired I could barely eat. I was still half-stunned on Wednesday, but there was no food in the house and I was booked at the Y, so off I went. I’m just glad I didn’t run over some unsuspecting pedestrian or T-bone a farm truck.

It’ll take a while for my bank account to recover from paying both Signor Festoso and the funeral bills. Just as well; I need a time-out, and a No-Spend November will help.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Oct 21 - 10:58 AM

I'm waiting on the postal carrier to transport a puzzle in a box to some Mudcat friends, then I'll hook up the dogs and take the pack for a walk. The current puzzle I'm working is a busy cartoon of Times Square in New York City. Unlike Times Square when I lived in NY for a few years in the last century.

The plants in the window have been watered and fertilized and I'll use some liquid fertilizer in the outdoor potted plants (many of them will make it through the winter, some outside, some in the greenhouse. Hoping for no repeat of last year's hard freeze.) I have extras from cuttings and bits that fell off - I need to find places to share them.

This evening I'll be going to the memorial for my son's guitar teacher. It should be lovely to listen to (friends and students will be playing) and for those not able to attend, they have a Zoom connection (see the Michael Dailey thread). Remoted listening - what was once rare is now common, a gift from COVID-19 (which alas, is what took Michael from his friends and family and students.) Decades ago now National Public Radio ran a short series of personal essays called This I Believe, reviving an even older series of radio essays. The one called Always Go To The Funeral really stuck with me and I still share it every so often. It's important for the families.

Now to logon to Consumer Reports and do sewing machine research for a friend. I wish she'd called when she was trying to hem her dress; she's hoping people won't notice the uneven hem in the mother's dress at her daughter's wedding tomorrow. (Done by hand after the sewing machine failed.) I should look at fixing the existing machine before helping her replace it.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Oct 21 - 08:01 PM

We're still waiting on the rain, and I personally am hoping it washes all of the ragweed pollen out of the air because it is really kicking my butt. I'm on Sudafed and allergy eye drops.

The thrift store had lots of puzzles this time and I loaded up. Not bad to come home with 8 puzzles for $15, five of them 300 piece puzzles and three with more.

This morning I finally got back to walking the dogs before I fed them, and we all enjoyed the exercise. I don't know why it has been such a challenge to walk them in the mornings, now that it's cooler (though this week - humid). The pecan trees are starting to drop nuts and two of the dogs really like those. I roll the nut under my shoe to crack it and pick off the shell then hand out pieces. Cookie doesn't know this routine yet (last year was terrible for pecans). Back in the old days my pitbull Cinnamon used to crunch them shell and all. She and Poppy and Zeke would root around and I'd race to pick them up and get off most of the shell.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Oct 21 - 11:03 AM

Today is one for hopefully equal amounts of offload and pickup. A haircut will be welcome, and after that I'll head south on a route past my old university to visit a couple of stores and a thrift shop. Looking for the 8x8 pan still, but also looking for puzzles. I'm taking some back to donate to the thrift store, where I'd like to pick up 3 or 4 new-to-me ones. Shopping the Halal grocery for Basmati rice and fresh Iraqi bread. I'm out of pita and that doesn't bode well for the eggplants in my garden (babaghanouj).

A quart bag of okra is going to my hairdresser, she requested fresh, not pickled. I'm about at the end of all of that picking. A few more today and maybe fried okra with dinner, then it's time to let these puppies go completely to seed.

It looks like the rain missed us so far today. I have a list of people who will take some of the extra plants once I can dig them up.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 12 Oct 21 - 11:09 PM

I have my own 'fukit' mode to contend with but it was worse in the old migraine days.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 12 Oct 21 - 10:29 PM

More power to the energetic folks who are not suffering the survival mode or even worse the burn out mode when dealing with the pandemic.
Those who are most depressed will not even be posting here. There are days you may not even want to get out of bed which is an indiction of the darker side of this pandemic. I'm just saying don't be discouraged by the success of others in the more successful reactions to pandemic. It is not a personal failing. Its just a feeling.
"Every body has the right to go south a day or two"
quote: Billy Joel


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Oct 21 - 05:15 PM

That would be a wicked jigsaw puzzle, Don!

Backsliding today, doing some recreational shopping between needed errands. The $12 huge mum from Costco, for example. I got gas, I went in for a $2 slice of pizza for lunch, and around the corner here was the big cart of mums.

Dorothy, your friend will be able to decide which mower she wants to keep, the one she already had or the one you gave her, and pass along the other. Win/win!

A friend sent some bib aprons that he bought to use for printing a bar logo on but the cloth is treated so his ink won't stay. So he sent them to me to "tart up" for gifts here. I think I'll make a panel to attach to the top (the box arrived but I haven't opened it yet.) A combination of stitching in place and iron-on adhesive.

I'm looking at thrift stores for a replacement 8x8 pan since mine seems to have gone walkabout. I've looked every nook and cranny I can think of, no pan. I haven't found a new one but I have been sorely tempted by some other kitchen gear. Hence the recreational shopping, including stuff for the eBay stash.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 12 Oct 21 - 04:21 PM

Photo from Alberta The Empire of Light


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 12 Oct 21 - 04:09 PM

Beaver:

Divesting myself of items; took a big bunch to thrift shop last week, and have sorted through some more bins in shed, and outgrown clothes are being re-homed; not a chance I will lose another 20 pounds! Leslie stopped by today to pick up the electric lawn mower for our friends who have been borrowing hers! I do not have the energy to mow; Steve can do it with his various machines. And Les took some fabrics for Pat's projects. Pat is a hoarder so I depend on Lesley to determine what it is OK to pass along. A very nice down jacket needing a repair I will never do but Pat is dedicated to repairing clothing.

Opening a box of "archives" on Sunday, I pulled out a couple news clippings from 1982. They happened to be pertinent to the folks who had invited me to dinner! So I took them along and gave them a bit of personal history! Fun!

The roof ext on the studio is complete and wonderful! I look forward to a winter of not having to fight the ice and snow to get in the door! And Dan pointed out that I could sit under it - be dry outside in the rain. Quite enough space for two chairs. A mini porch!

Two boxes of Quaker booklets in the car to go to Montreal? But at this moment: they might be better received in Toronto. I'll think on it.

Did a laundry today to have clean bed sheets! Having put the "umbrella" clothes drying rack away for the winter, I hung things over the wood pile! They dried quickly in the sun. But talking about it with Lesley, I realized that the one I use indoors could easily be used outside as well. Good idea!

Gorgeous fall day! I finished the mugs that were in process but have not tried to throw anymore. Discovered a few days ago that the under the right arm lymph nodes are swollen - hence the discomfort>pain in right arm/shoulder/right side. A hot bath helped greatly and the heating pad also helps. Visiting the nurse practitioner tomorrow for some general consideration of this aging body.

My #2 son's good friend Jeff from grade 7-8 just informed Taun his mom (92) died. Taun phoned me - to tell me? or to tell me he and Tenley would like to come to Chateauguay for Christmas. Jeff may come also. That is a good plan so I can give Taun anything I may have that he would want. That has been on my mind. It will be nice to meet Tenley as well (I hope).

Still not sure when I will go back to Dupont. It is beautiful here.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Oct 21 - 10:00 PM

Another handful of old mechanical pencils and pens were in the secretary in my bedroom, and most of the pens are trashed. The pencils will probably be donated on my next trip up to the donation fridge.

The distribution process for pickled okra has begun - delivered to neighbors on both sides of me and I'll take some across the street tomorrow. These are the folks I have the most contact with and who live closest to the jungle that is my front yard garden. The recipients were very happy with the pickles.

During the summer I ordered an envelope of environmentally friendly sheets of laundry detergent, and have tested them intermittently while drawing down the bottle of liquid detergent. Now I'm using the sheets most of the time. They are more expensive than the jugs of detergent, but by buying a half-size bulk order it comes out about twice as expensive. It's going to last for a very long time, with just me in the house. One wonders at the exchange - a five-year supply of laundry detergent to save sending five large jugs to the dump.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Thompson
Date: 11 Oct 21 - 07:58 AM

Horrors, no, they're still wearable. I just have to marry an octopus and have octopus babies.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 10 Oct 21 - 07:23 PM

socks?

If you have friends who are crafty the materials could be reused. I'm currently (almost) working on a wallhanging using a friend's ties, I just need to finish off the quilt made from the t-shirts he designed in the 80s, that will be Friday. Then I'll start cutting up 30 beautiful silk ties. Last year I made a similar wallhanging with another friend's ties.

Reuse and Refashion: Silk and Lace Takes a Second Life


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Thompson
Date: 10 Oct 21 - 05:06 PM

Well, winter is icumen in, or to be more accurate (given that the literal meaning of icumen means it is actually here) is about to icum in, it's time to wash, iron, air and put away the summer clothes and get out the thick winter skirts and trousers, the socks and tights and long-johns, the big jumpers and warm jackets.
How did I get so many socks? What am I doing with so many silk chemises from earlier days?


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Oct 21 - 03:21 PM

All of that ceremony and after-event activity sounds magnificent, Charmion. Well done to all of you (and a big moist eyed greeting and hug from here.) The uniforms on the holiday is particularly poignant.

Oldest child has returned from abroad; I suspect she is still sleeping off that trip. Good thing tomorrow is a federal holiday, she has an extra day to settle back into the routine.

The okra plants are looking exponentially bad each day. Yesterday was rough, today they are wretched, brown leaves and stems toppling off of the tall plants, each with a 2-3" diameter ankle-high that was a hedge all summer but now resembles a torn and broken umbrella. They're racing to put out fresh pods at the very top so today's haul was particularly robust.

Rain is in the forecast, but not trusting it to happen I watered several zones of the front yard yesterday. I'm getting ready to start digging and doing more transplanting out there.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 10 Oct 21 - 01:07 PM

I’m in Ottawa at Elder Brother’s house. The burial of Edmund’s ashes at Beechwood yesterday went off without a hitch, complete with bugler and piper, and the sun even came out. SIL No 1 (wife of Little Bro) organized a reception for 50 guests that also went off without a hitch, complete with guitar-violin duo and an open bar. When I’ve paid the bills for that, Op Funeral will be done and dusted. Every member of the extended family who could possibly make it did so, and a very large contingent of serving and retired legal officers showed up, most of them in uniform. On a Saturday. On a holiday weekend.

As Official Chief Mourner, it is my job to embrace suddenly weeping men, and accept beringed handshakes from stoic women who have been where I am (literally as well figuratively in a couple of cases) and know the ground intimately. They stand up straight and look me dead in the eye.

Nephew No 1’s wife is shaping up into a Pushy Stage Mum. Hmmmm.

And my new cat-visitor in Stratford looks like the real deal. She sent me an All’s Well email this morning with a photo of shy, suspicious Isobel on the dining room table, a sight I was sure she would not see for at least a year.

Tomorrow I will spend another long stretch of idle time in the custody of Via Rail, travelling steerage because I am a skinflint. Then I must turn my attention to the choir and its issues, and otherwise get on with life.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Oct 21 - 05:02 PM

I took a stroll through online office supplies this weekend. I am doing enough work at the museum where, like in Special Collections at the university, you are only allowed to use pencils in public areas. I have a handful of old institutional mechanical pencils from the supply cupboard at the library that have seen better days. I've ordered a four pack of Pentel pencils with a super-sized twist eraser and extra leads. I offer this in case anyone else is deciding they need to upgrade their pencils (I'll be walking around in the museum and want a simple functioning mechanical pencil). I could use wood pencils, but they invariably break their tips in my handbag.

I'm also replacing the FIDO key I've had in my pocket for over five years - it's part of a two-factor authentication process that I've been meaning to upgrade. This year when I set up a tablet my Google account wanted the key but there was no USB port it would fit into as most tablets now have the smaller phone USB and type-C ports. The new key has that plus and NFC so I can just wave it past the phone or tablet. I might be able to reset to old FIDO key and use it as a spare.

To declutter I rounded up all of the old plastic mechanical pencils here, tossing those that are defunct. There is a pantry cupboard next to the municipal aid fridge (where I take my spare produce) - and I can donate working pens and pencils that can be used by a school kid, etc. Around the house I have cups and boxes with pens and pencils - Oh! I just found my father's old Papermate mechanical pencil that twists to extend the lead. Heck. The eraser is puny and probably dried up, but for sentimental reasons I could have stuck with this one. :-/

I'll bag the okra and peppers and donate extras to the fridge and take a container with all of these writing implements. My mother used to tell a story about early times when she was a social worker, that there was a family she visited where the kids were having trouble doing homework because there were so few pencils or pens in the home. She dredged her purse and offered some and on her way home she stopped by the grocery store and bought dozens and put them in every room in our house. I seem to have inherited Mom's penchant for writing implements everywhere. They join the books, flashlights, and radios.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Oct 21 - 11:21 AM

I have a soaker hose running in the back yard, and am hoping Cookie has reached the age where she ignores new things. She chewed up the ends of a few hoses when she first arrived as a 7-month-old puppy. Now she's about 2 1/2. Time flies! We forgot to celebrate "gotcha" days this year for Cookie and Pepper (September and June).

Every so often I go through a cleaning phase for small things. I use a couple of stainless steel strainers for loose tea that sit over the tops of cups and boiling water is poured through. Last night I added bleach to a cup that needed cleaning anyway and water and dropped the strainers and their steel cups into the mix. I scrubbed the little Japanese condiment bowls that they always sit on, and worked from there to clear the whole tea-making zone. It's a small declutter but it looked so bright and welcoming this morning!

Other cleaning (scrubbing) is due in a few places around the house, like a sponge and Formula 409 along the walls where the dogs always seem to rub and there is a darker zone. The paint is washable and needs it. This is in particularly needed in the bedroom wing of the house.

In my bedroom closet I've been looking at my shoes again. I'm thinking this is the time to look into the Dr. Scholl's shoe inserts or go ahead and donate a couple of pairs of shoes with absolutely no arch support. A woman at DSW told me she swears by them, and when she saw how much less the men's cost vs women's she buys the men's insoles and cuts them to size. And I see tips on the Dr. Scholl's site about cutting these things, so I guess that isn't a big deal. Have any of you used those various products? What do you think?


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Oct 21 - 11:07 AM

The doctor said stagger them. Enough said.

Today is gorgeous outside, but I have a lot of homework to finish for a course I've been taking.

The flowerbed-a-week plan has started, but until we get some rain here the garden work will include a thorough soak with a sprinkler to loosen the soil. When I watered the newly transplanted lilies I also watered the iris next to them so I'll thin those and pull out the grass and weeds. And while I'm at it, I need to level the birdbath that sits there.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 06 Oct 21 - 04:53 AM

I don't think you need to stagger them. I've been in that boat, and every doc I've consulted about my back pain has told me that they're safe together. I'm not giving advice, just telling you what I've been told (and I'm still here!) I had a terrible experience with the opioid Tramadol a few years ago. I won't regale you, but it taught me to avoid like the plague anything containing opioids, including concoctions containing codeine.

That's just me!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Oct 21 - 10:06 PM

When the kids were tiny and running fevers the pediatrician had us stagger the two, acetaminophen (Tylenol) and ibuprofen (Motrin). It's something I learned to do for myself in situations like this with the flu or other pain that I don't want narcotic painkillers for.

This evening is only mildly achy. Along with the medications I took a couple of long naps today and I expect tomorrow to be back to normal. I went looking for information about efficacy and posted it in the COVID news thread. This third shot brings me back up to the level of protection after the second shot. (I don't know how long it lasts, or if we'll be getting annual COVID shots next year.)

I had the time and energy to move the lilies in the front garden and transplant them to the other end of that bed. The extras I thinned out are in a bucket to offer to friends locally. I also put a lot of daffodil bulbs back into the same garden (they had been lined up in front of the wall, now they're clumped on one side of the bed) and the mulch I used I made using my electric chipper.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 05 Oct 21 - 05:48 PM

In response to a whistle blower, Facebook said "We do not encourage profit over safety". Heaven forbid, could they be lieing?

Naproxin has drawbacks but works for some people to control pain.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Oct 21 - 04:32 PM

Ah, Motrin. That's what we call ibuprofen this end. Now that one does get my gut. My bad-back medication is diclofenac. I have to take a proton pump inhibitor to stop it from attacking my gut. I hate it, but that combo keeps me moving!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 05 Oct 21 - 04:27 PM

That's unlucky. Both my jabs were Pfizer and not only did I have no side-effects, I didn't even feel the needle. I'm no doc and don't think we should ever dole out medical advice, but tylenol (paracetamol this end) shouldn't upset your stomach. I don't like taking it, but I've had a rotten cold for days now and the paracetamol is great for that horrible, headachey, bunged-up feeling...


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Oct 21 - 03:46 PM

Staggering Tylenol and Motrin worked pretty well. There's still a bit of fog, but most of the body aches (except the arm) have dissipated.

I don't have ambitious plans for the day, but to boost my mood I picked up in the kitchen since I figured doing something quiet with visible results would help. Sweeping will help to that end also. Later I'm going to dig a couple of lilies and move them just because I want to see that newly dug bed put to use. I can work in the shade (and the shade has been the problem for the lilies - they need sun). I've thought of a second area where I can plant the rest of those lilies, so I'll set up the sprinkler to water and soften the soil to a workable consistency.

Dorothy, I love the idea of your getting up early and starting early and seeing dawn and such - I have to start getting myself to bed earlier if I ever want to approach being a morning person. Easier said than done!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 05 Oct 21 - 03:20 PM

Beaver:

SRS: thank you for the heads up; we are no where near boosters yet.

I feel back to my good self today - for some reason! Was up at 5 am, BF, checked on studio, did a couple errands, trimmed a few pots - shoulder ached badly with certain moves so I came back in house for lunch, glucosamine sulfate and computer. Soon a couple more errands. And try pottery again.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Oct 21 - 10:47 AM

I had the sneaking suspicion that yesterday's total outage was to remind us how addicted we are to the Facebook/Instagram et al environment. I tested sending a text to my daughter in Italy using Google Voice since she has a Google phone, and it worked. But it's Google - even bigger . . .

Meanwhile, I'm going back to bed in a couple of minutes. I ate a little cereal so I wouldn't be taking Tylenol on an empty stomach, and in a couple of hours I'll take Motrin, and see if staggering the two helps. The morning after my Pfizer booster I feel like I was run over by a Mack Truck. This hit harder than the other two shots.

It's still worth getting it, but clear your calendar for a day or two before you get the booster.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 05 Oct 21 - 08:33 AM

Gee, Donuel, tell us something we don't know. Anyone with a brain can tell that the original purpose of Facebook was to make money, and that core mission has not changed.

The Facebook users with the most anodyne motives are probably the old soldiers who get on the platform to find other old soldiers they dimly remember from recruit school and decades-ago deployments. The users who generate the most revenue are selling crap from China. And the users who will eventually get them in the most trouble are the one-tenth-of-one-percent who are on the platform solely to tell lies and f*** up the world for others.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 05 Oct 21 - 08:27 AM

Besides misleading and lying to investors, users and Congress, - lawsuits against Facebook include;
8 S.E.C. complaints
Changing algorithms to allow hate speech a week before Jan 6
Anti Trust action by the FTC
Facebook covered up after the Cambridge analytical scandel.
It was followed up by overpaying a 4.5 billion dollar fine like a bribe
to save Zuckerberg's kin. Decluttering Facebook sounds good for individuals but not some companies.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 05 Oct 21 - 07:38 AM

One of the believed lies about Facebook is that the origins of Facebook was to bring people together. I remind you that it was originally designed to post which girls on campus were f-able and if they were hot or not. I suppose you can say it brought people together in an exploitive way but division and hate are even more prominent motivators than sex. The true origins of Facebook is still present today. They are in deeper trouble than you might think right now.
It turns out that international counter intelligence programs and misinformation required more than six people to moderate.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Oct 21 - 12:22 AM

My den is back to full-on forest floor, but tomorrow is soon enough to sweep. Or not. I got my COVID booster shot today; with the second shot I was a little flu-like the next day and that's what I expect to be the case this time also. The pharmacist said no one has called back to report anything unusual with two weeks of issuing them so far.

A late afternoon nap was enough to give me back the energy to do some cooking. I made a batch of pizza dough and turned out four small pizza crusts. Three went into the freezer, one was turned into a small (12") pizza for dinner tonight and leftovers for a couple of more meals. It was up to 90o today so not exactly fall cooking weather, but I'm letting the shorter days and changing leaves be my guide and think also that last month's no-spend practice has me doing more cooking (this evening as an example - making pizza crusts when I often buy flat bread and tortillas as a shortcut). I've managed to clear more fridge leftovers and recognize the "less is more" effect of being able to see everything that is in there now.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 04 Oct 21 - 07:28 PM

Beaver:

Managed to do almost nothing more today but find out that FB is down internationally!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 04 Oct 21 - 02:50 PM

It's nearly half past two and I have eaten precisely one orange today, on top of the pint (Imperial) of coffee that is my normal breakfast. I have been sorting out printer problems and doing admin crap that ran overdue because the printer was having problems.

I cannot for the life of me figure out why the printer just stopped communicating wirelessly with the desktop computer, which is a perfectly sound and healthy Mac. I could do AirPrint with both the phone and the iPad, but the computer was shut out completely. Consequently, I ended up moving half the contents of the study so the printer could hook up to the computer by Ethernet cable without tripping people. Then I had to check all the printer- and scanner-related software ... Yikes!

The house is a little less filthy than it was yesterday at this time since I got out the vacuum cleaner and tackled the rugs. The kitchen floor needs washing before Thursday, when my in-laws from Windsor will see it, but it's not urgent yet. The countdown to train time on Friday has begun. I have already packed the funerary urn and the documents I need for the cemetery in a sturdy gym bag, along with Edmund's cap and medals. The Order of Service booklet is out for layout and printing. The new cat-sitter is lined up.

The diet is going surprisingly well. I have not had any episodes of mad craving or collapsed exhaustion lately, suggesting that I'm getting more of something I needed more of. The missing link is probably protein, closely followed by fats, since the biggest changes are the shift to whole milk (and drinking lots of it), and deliberately increasing the amount of meat (usually chicken), eggs and fish I eat. Another pound or two and I'll be into a smaller size in trousers.

An 11-year-old bottle of Chilean chardonnay turned up in the cellar the other day, and I was surprised to find that it was very drinkable despite being almost twice as old as chardonnay really should get. It had a screw-cap instead of a cork, which is probably why. A not-quite-so-elderly gewurtztraminer located in the same sweep had lost much of its charm when I popped the cork; I really should have poured it down the sink instead of feeding it to my friend Rose, but I could not quite bring myself to do it. So now I'm going through the racks of whites to find the oldest bottles and schedule them for immediate drinking.

Yeah, I know. This isn't just a First World problem; it's a Fat-Cat problem.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 04 Oct 21 - 02:06 PM

Beaver:

Back yard still not done! Steve missed the one dry day but maybe tomorrow. I really NEED this! Staying here until mid month. R is still overwhelmed with work... I phoned this am: "I slept all day yesterday". Too many irons in the fire and too little organization.

I have done very little during this last rainy time. Starting to put things aside my son might want. GD still being rapid anti-vax on FB; could not go to (step) sister's wedding on Sat because she would have had to be tested. Really hurting her Dad et al.

Good chuckle: Watching Jim and the Akita taking a walk and the dog sees/hears something in the woods. Then Jim is trying to see what ... I had to go out and thank him for the chuckle.

Maybe today I will finish the mugs I threw last week. Sent some short emails -overdue and wrote a letter and printed it for mailing -also
overdue. And managed to find an email address for a dear person; old emails seem to have been lost in the new computer somewhere - the one to which I really wanted to respond- GONE! OH, and FB does not come up! After several tries...

Time for a healthy lunch.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Oct 21 - 01:00 PM

On Friday I called the pharmacy to learn when my favorite pharmacist will be in, and was given the wrong information. I've returned home and have a few things to do here before trying again later - this includes rounding up produce to donate in the mutual aid fridge a few miles north of me. I can't use all of the okra and peppers, but others will.

I missed the trash pickup (they were early) so I'll toss the current batch of sunflower (Helianthus annuus) cuttings into the back of the back yard. Yesterday's weeding in the front contributed to the compost pile, but sunflowers are too tough and woody to add to it. I need to turn the compost, but not while I'm dressed to go out. That's work for the ratty jeans and oldest yard shoes.

On Facebook I've had some tips for granola-making from fellow Mudcatter Jenn Brooks. She makes a batch more than double the size of mine (there are two of them to eat it) and has simplified it by baking it in a steel bowl. I await the restored Facebook (crashed earlier today) to learn the details of how that works. Parchment? It might be a sticky job otherwise.

Fall cleaning is going to involve seasonal adjustments like getting out the extra blankets for cooler weather. I washed them in the spring so they're ready to go now. And I have to turn my attention to the dog beds - Cookie-proofing them so she doesn't tear the stuffing out. Again. I'm going to repurpose the fabric from the old sofa-pet-thing to cover them and hopefully make them less attractive to destroy.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Oct 21 - 03:42 PM

The little tiller was handy this afternoon to break up one of the old mounds that was a compost pile (note to self - take the tiller in for work, it's leaking fuel). A bunch of lovely compost is in the wheelbarrow next to the front bed where I watered enough to loosen it. Last year at this time I worked the bed and put down mulch, so it's coming out easily, and there is a growing mound of daffodil bulbs beside the bed. (Last year at this time I planted a redbud, an American beautyberry, and a blue salvia out front. The salvia was in this bed and was killed in that hard freeze).

Once the bed is dug I'll spread compost then move over to the other part of the bed I watered and dig up the pink crinum lilies (they came along accidentally with some iris bulbs, and have expanded their area of the garden, but they don't get enough sun to bloom much). The bed they're going into gets lots of sun, unlike where they are now. The friend with the yaupon hollys I'm going to dig has offered some of her dark pink crinums after thinning, so I'll add some of those. And offer some of my pink crinums once I finish. They're growing in at least three different places around the yard. The leaves are lovely so it hasn't been a problem that they didn't bloom.

I'm in cooling down - pacing oneself until it cools about 10 degrees more than our afternoons now is important. While I'm working some stuff is thawing for making soup this evening. Beef (I'll grind) and vegetables and some pasta. I accidentally opened a jar of unseasoned tomato sauce so want to use it - hence the decision to make soup. :)


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Oct 21 - 10:34 AM

The morning debate: I want to take a shower and my hair really needs to be washed, but I'm going to work in the yard today. Drinking my tea, eating a 1/2 cup of granola with 3/4 cup of whole milk (trying out the trick Charmion mentioned a while back) then heading into the garden. Rain this week is a small help toward conditioning the soil so I can work it. I have some iris to thin and lilies to transplant, and to make room for another couple of plants that are getting big in pots that need to go in the ground.

I'll set the gate and the posts out on the ground and see what hardware I have already (I took apart the fence posts from the stockade fence in the back yard, but some of the gear on the posts is the same as is used for chain link fencing and chain link gates). I may buy a second gate to make it a double gate if I'm sure I can get good hardware to keep it solidly closed when it's locked.

Tomorrow is trash day so it's time to cut down another of the huge native sunflower plants—the whole plant completely fills the tough Rubbermaid trashcan. They're like a small tree at the end of the season. I toss some of these in the back behind the fence, they break down into the duff back there, but as I remove the privet what I need to do is get some better types of trees established and they don't need to be shaded out by sunflowers. While touring the garden of my friends on Friday she remarked that they have some yaupon holly to dig out, pointing at some 12-18" sprouts in the underbrush. I have dibs on them and will go over later in the fall (after the first frost) and dig up several to transplant here. I'll directly transplant most of them but put a couple in pots to keep as backup. Buying trees at the nursery is an expensive move when putting them in an area where I intend to neglect them.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 03 Oct 21 - 08:33 AM

Thanks, Steve. That will come in handy this winter (stew season), I’m sure.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Oct 21 - 07:59 PM

I should have weighed the entire batch of granola when it finished, something I'll do next time to finish my calculations, but for now I have a breakdown on the cost of my homemade granola. I bought sliced almonds, unsalted raw sunflower seeds, bulk raisins, a bottle of Texas honey, and I calculated the weight of three cups of old fashioned rolled oats. I don't have a cost for the olive oil because I buy that in 3 litre bottles and always have it on hand, so I won't bother to figure that. A 14 ounce bag of Aldi's Millville oat, honey, almond, and raisin granola costs $2.14. I can't eat that because it has some coconut oil in it, I buy their little more expensive higher protein variety instead.

My homemade batch, that lasts probably three times as long as the Millville bag, comes out $4.35 a batch. So it isn't necessarily a huge savings but it doesn't cost more, and it tastes so much better. It's something I'm going to keep doing.

I made progress toward the gate and fence work - I picked up two bags of the stronger concrete (originally I was looking for the 80 pound bag, but came across the 60 pound bags first. They're all cheap and these I can lift by myself). Next - dig a hole.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 02 Oct 21 - 07:25 PM

Well,Charmion, the recipe for suet dumplings (for six or eight dumplings) is 100g self-raising flour, 50g of shredded suet, a pinch of salt and water. Now the water is the tricky bit. Put everything into a bowl then add water slowly. The dough should end up sticky, thick and pliable but not sloppy. It's an experience thing. Divide into about eight lumps and add to your bubbling stew. They need 20 minutes.


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Mudcat time: 20 October 2:14 AM EDT

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