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De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021

Donuel 15 Sep 21 - 05:47 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Sep 21 - 08:43 PM
Donuel 15 Sep 21 - 09:42 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Sep 21 - 11:54 PM
Donuel 16 Sep 21 - 07:32 AM
Charmion 16 Sep 21 - 10:22 AM
Stilly River Sage 16 Sep 21 - 10:56 AM
Stilly River Sage 16 Sep 21 - 11:37 AM
Donuel 17 Sep 21 - 10:59 AM
Charmion 17 Sep 21 - 11:09 AM
Donuel 17 Sep 21 - 01:12 PM
Dorothy Parshall 17 Sep 21 - 07:20 PM
Stilly River Sage 18 Sep 21 - 12:08 AM
Charmion 18 Sep 21 - 12:34 PM
Donuel 18 Sep 21 - 01:48 PM
Charmion 18 Sep 21 - 02:18 PM
Donuel 18 Sep 21 - 03:48 PM
Stilly River Sage 18 Sep 21 - 09:04 PM
Stilly River Sage 19 Sep 21 - 10:09 AM
Stilly River Sage 19 Sep 21 - 06:41 PM
Charmion 20 Sep 21 - 11:07 AM
Stilly River Sage 20 Sep 21 - 12:19 PM
Stilly River Sage 20 Sep 21 - 04:05 PM
Charmion 20 Sep 21 - 04:10 PM
Stilly River Sage 21 Sep 21 - 10:24 AM
Stilly River Sage 21 Sep 21 - 02:57 PM
Stilly River Sage 22 Sep 21 - 11:34 AM
Charmion 22 Sep 21 - 01:56 PM
Stilly River Sage 22 Sep 21 - 02:23 PM
Bat Goddess 23 Sep 21 - 10:25 AM
Stilly River Sage 23 Sep 21 - 02:22 PM
Dorothy Parshall 23 Sep 21 - 06:01 PM
Stilly River Sage 24 Sep 21 - 12:49 AM
Charmion 24 Sep 21 - 10:02 AM
Stilly River Sage 24 Sep 21 - 10:19 AM
Charmion 24 Sep 21 - 05:13 PM
Stilly River Sage 24 Sep 21 - 11:46 PM
Charmion 25 Sep 21 - 10:44 AM
Charmion's brother Andrew 25 Sep 21 - 10:50 AM
Stilly River Sage 25 Sep 21 - 11:14 AM
Stilly River Sage 26 Sep 21 - 10:26 AM
Dorothy Parshall 26 Sep 21 - 03:29 PM
Stilly River Sage 27 Sep 21 - 01:34 PM
Charmion 28 Sep 21 - 03:18 PM
Stilly River Sage 28 Sep 21 - 08:26 PM
JennieG 29 Sep 21 - 01:03 AM
Charmion 29 Sep 21 - 08:28 AM
Jon Freeman 29 Sep 21 - 09:16 AM
Stilly River Sage 29 Sep 21 - 12:00 PM
Bat Goddess 29 Sep 21 - 02:35 PM
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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 15 Sep 21 - 05:47 PM

Decluttering oneself from Trump anxiety is not desensitizing oneself from the 'peril' but filling in the loopholes that the villain was using. WASH. DC was the only city the President was in total control of the National Guard. That loop hole is being closed. The Mayor is now in charge. Back in Dec and Jan the entire fabric of government was prepared for a 'devolution' of Trump toward a war emergency footing.
It was given an odd name. The white nationalist Trump rally may have a diversionary aspect to it since the Capitol will be so well defended.
They want sympathetic martyrdom for their followers. Let us not give it to them. Every story needs a villain we all love to hate. Let it not be us.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Sep 21 - 08:43 PM

I had a shopping list and did some strategic shopping today (mid-no-spend month). Costco had a couple of things I needed or will need soon on sale, so good timing there. I hope there is something to that whole milk tip - when you buy milk at Costco you get a good price per carton but I had to buy 3 half-gallon cartons (shelf date into mid-November, so I think I'll be okay. I use a carton every couple of weeks.)

The big need was zyrtec (generic) for the dogs and me. The vet put them on it (cheaper than the vet Rx and works just as well). Costco had it on sale.

I didn't get everything, but I got the most essential. The rest can wait, so maybe no more shopping this month. The dogs will get their antihistamine with dinner instead of breakfast and that was the most pressing. The most embarrassing purchase was, of all things, dried parsley. Embarrassing because I used a couple of tablespoons of the jar I had in the falafel I made two weeks ago for guests; I was making it again yesterday and looked closely at the flour mix I was about to stir into the food processor and realized there were dried weevils in it. OMGosh! The new jar of dried parsley flakes is in the freezer just like I do with flour and other grains, pasta, and beans. After a while they can come out again, but just in case. I had weevils turn up in some chamomile tea one time so that always goes into the freezer when I bring it home.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 15 Sep 21 - 09:42 PM

Which had the lessor of two weevils, the Flour or Parsley?


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Sep 21 - 11:54 PM

It looks like Elon Musk is working on decluttering the planet - these rockets of his can lift 50,000 pounds of equipment (or "stuff") on each shot. Well there you have it! Off-site storage is now off the planet. Funny that this also belongs in the MOAB thread. :)


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 16 Sep 21 - 07:32 AM

Regarding the Book Peril, still not released, Fox News types and Trump are calling back channels along with the people who use them treasonous. You can learn the value of back channels from the fictional movie Sum of All Fears. In the real world, back channels have saved all our lives.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 16 Sep 21 - 10:22 AM

I have signed up to work at the District Returning Office on election day, which is next Monday. Our federal elections are blessedly simple affairs compared to what goes on down south: campaigns last precisely six weeks, and each elector votes for one person to represent his or her constituency (also called a riding) in the House of Commons.

My job will be to tick off the name of each voter as the District Returning Officer opens the ballots and records the votes. The ballots are serially numbered (recorded by the poll clerk as each voter is ticked off the list of electors on arrival), so I see the name and the number, and the DRO sees the number and the choice. Nobody sees both the name and the choice.

All of this is done immediately after the polls close at 8:00 p.m. (2000 hr), using printed lists and paper ballots, with rituals as strict as sterile procedure in an operating room. If it takes all night, that's what it takes. Much coffee is drunk.

Like many largely rural constituencies, the riding of Perth-Wellington is solidly Conservative. It comprises the towns, villages and farms lying between Kitchener-Waterloo and London, and Stratford (population 32,000; home of the Ontario Pork Council) is its largest community. So no Liberal, let alone Dipper (member of the New Democratic Party or NDP), need apply with any expectation of success.

Ah, Ontario. Gotta love it.

Meanwhile, in other news, nothing new. Diet firing all right: down five pounds, all of it (I'm sure) bloat. So far no mad dives into the pantry in search of anything I might devour -- the whole milk thing seems to work, at least for me. (It helps that the only immediately devourable items in the house are onions, high-fibre cereal, sealed jars of jam, and one lonely small box of shortbread.) I have had no bouts of flattening weariness since Sunday, and my wonky foot is holding up.

I must buy groceries today -- fruit, veg and toilet cleaner -- and edit the hand-outs for the choir's annual general meeting. I shall also take a substantial walk. My dance card is full.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Sep 21 - 10:56 AM

To start the morning I have measured and photographed three pieces of family antique furniture. There is a postit note on each in the photos with the dimensions for planning placement should my son and partner decide they like the looks of any of these. Now to process them and save to a Google file I'll share with them.

I should be out walking, but have to get back into the habit of rising earlier when it's coolest. We're still in the 90s now. The torrential Nicholas-driven rains are well to the east, but one of these days that will be us. I don't think I moved from one Ecotopia (Puget Sound) to another (North Texas), though North Texas weather has changed a lot since I moved here nearly 40 years ago. Time flies when you're having children . . .

Speaking of flying time - 100 days till xmas.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Sep 21 - 11:37 AM

My browser window was open when Charmion posted so I didn't see her account of performing a civic service. That activity is fraught down here, but I've been thinking it's time to get involved with the poll work also. Good job, Charmion!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 17 Sep 21 - 10:59 AM

Election results in the US requires hundreds of certifications, stamps and some with ribbons. There are various cinch points and if you add some of the Republican 'suggestions' there could be partisan boards that could assign new electors. So election reform is in order.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 17 Sep 21 - 11:09 AM

No kidding, D.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 17 Sep 21 - 01:12 PM

https://www.reuters.com/world/us/us-senate-democrats-seek-quick-passage-revised-election-reform-plan-2021-09-14/ no joke


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 17 Sep 21 - 07:20 PM

Beaver:

I sure have not lost any weight. Nor have I made any pots. I have collected a good size pile of stuff to give to Pat; it is in the car. I have not finished grieving the plight of my 90 year old friend; the mutual friend whom I asked to be an intermediary left a message to which I have not even been able to respond. Dan has not yet appeared to put the new shelves in but I have made space so I could pot - if I could find the energy and inclination.

My best news is that friends from Quebec have indicated they will probably appear on my doorstep on Sun or Mon. I sent them directions with photos, as in "When you see this house do an almost U-turn into Gaebel Rd - where you see my car" (in the pic) It would cheer me to have this visit. The glitch is that I checked the sleeping loft and it needs to be swept or vacuumed. Either way I shall have to do it in the am, wearing a respirator and go somewhere for the day!! Tomorrow!! They will bring their own food! I remember when I used to cook really nice (not fancy) meals for 4 to 50 people, now I barely cook for R and me.

In 1977, I realized that drinking milk made me feel sick but whipping cream did not; I quit drinking milk - and cream!- but use milk or sour milk in (rare) baking. And only eat 10% yogurt.

It was a beautiful fall day today and I managed only to spread the large tarp out on the lawn and sweep some of the stuff off. If it dries more, I will sweep more and try to fold it and put it in shed - maybe. Tomorrow is a trip to the Shop, and some grocery shopping. And the library if it is open; I will have finished 3 of the 4 books I borrowed on Tuesday.

My technical advance for this year is being able to get pics from phone to computer!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Sep 21 - 12:08 AM

I've spent time this week eliminating duplicate photos from my Google photo drive. I'm down to half of the space filled (it was getting close to 15gb full when they started saying I should buy more space or eliminate photos last week.) I've created a file for photos of furniture that my son might be able to use in his new house.

99.9% of the time the work I do for a local business is online from here at the house, but tomorrow I have to drive to a town north of Dallas to attend an event. I've printed out the map and saved information to my phone. I'm not a morning person, but I'll be leaving here in the morning in time to make the one-hour drive. On the way home I can stop for lunch at a small middle eastern restaurant I like in the area.

I took my ex on a tour of Costco today, so he can see what the options are for shopping there. I buy him the salmon they carry, and there may be other things he'll be interested in. He doesn't have a membership but will pay me back for my shopping. (I looked for the frozen halibut today, but there was none, and the "fresh" didn't really look fresh.) Mostly it was the quick tour of things we don't need but that are appealing.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 18 Sep 21 - 12:34 PM

I stay out of Costco on principle; buying in bulk is almost always a bad idea for me these days, and every time I have been in a Costco store I have bought anywhere up to three times as much stuff as I came for. The whole place is a temple of temptation, and the great prices just are not worth the effort it takes to resist.

Last night, I renewed an important friendship with Sharon, a retired professor whom we met (with her husband Richard, another retired professor) at a food-security fundraiser a few weeks after we moved to Stratford. Sharon is a raging granny with a long list of causes, and a lot of fun although she does keep trying to draft me -- last night she was promoting "chalktivism", her term for graffiti attacks on public buildings. (I *so* don't want to get arrested, especially not for vandalism.) She's also a cellist with no one to play with; maybe, if I distract her with enough diddly tunes, I can keep her out of jail.

Sharon and Richard can help me drink up Edmund's collection of wine. Unlike my in-laws, they like rare steak with a robust red, and they eat with all the enthusiasm of a penniless undergraduate.

Diet still going well; the rate of loss has slowed, but I have not regained so much as an ounce. Over time, I think (hope?) its primary function will be to keep me eating a healthy balance of carbs, protein and fats; I had been living primarily on bread and cheese.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 18 Sep 21 - 01:48 PM

I've never subscribed to Big Lots Inc. But I used to go for free samples. I support sidewalk chalk artists and don't see any criminality in it
.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 18 Sep 21 - 02:18 PM

Sharon doesn’t do sidewalks, Don; she does police stations, churches and City Hall. If she got caught, she would be charged, and if she were charged she would yell “See you in court!” and call the media. Lawyers despair of clients like Sharon.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 18 Sep 21 - 03:48 PM

hahahaha


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Sep 21 - 09:04 PM

Filling in for a public figure at a public event, even for just 3 hours, is exhausting. When said public figure arrived by 2pm I looked around at the rest of the exhibits then left for a late lunch of pasta at a favorite French restaurant (a small regional chain). During the drive home I pulled over for a 15 minute power nap.

I haven't done much around the house for a few days, but I need to add stuff to the donation bin since I stopped by Goodwill on the way home and found a glass pot lid that will perfectly fit my little 8" cast iron skillet. Something came into the house, so under the best circumstances at least one something should now leave the house (it can be a totally different category than kitchen item).


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Sep 21 - 10:09 AM

I have a sudden motivation to pick up around here, and if decluttering happens all the better. A Mudcatter is passing through town later this week so the guest room will be sorted (make the bed, move out a couple of pieces of furniture stashed in there, etc.) I haven't had an overnight guest since my cataract surgery, and that was family. When was the last time someone came over? Certainly pre-COVID. (We have all been vaccinated.)

The potting bench needs to be sorted - I think there is a piece of produce in one of the boxes that has started to decompose. I catch a whiff of it as I walk past, but so far haven't found it. Not a potato, maybe okra?

There is yard work needed also—tomorrow is supposed to reach 100o but then it will cool into the high 80s for the rest of the week. We're approaching October and sometimes the first frost has been mid-October, though I suspect this year that dip in temperature will hold off to the more typical mid-November.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Sep 21 - 06:41 PM

I wore the wrong shoes to the museum this afternoon. I either need to get rid of these or find the good-fitting insoles (Dr. Scholl's) and fit them into the shoes with no arch support.

Today I was to follow the docent who is appointed as mentor. It didn't go well from a tour standpoint, she doesn't speak so she can be heard and the information dispensed along the way was scant and rambled. I'll keep doing the research about the tours I want to do and be glad my past National Park Service training will stand me in good stead.

Not feeling terribly motivated to do much around here this afternoon, but tomorrow is another day.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 11:07 AM

My little tunes session has a problem: our youngest member, Lauren, has an obsessively over-protective mum who has turned out to be an anti-vaxxer. The rest of us are now forbidden to mention the V word, or indeed even to discuss the pandemic at all, because Lauren is "stressed". I just bet Lauren is stressed; she's a bright kid and, much as she loves her mum, I'm sure she knows that, in this case, Mother does not Know Best.

I foresee a great dust-up in the future of that family, with much hurt feeling and assertions of best intentions.

It's garbage day with recycling, so I hauled out a month's worth of newspapers and the collection of boxes and packing materials that had accumulated in the garage over the summer. It makes quite a stack, but nothing like the mountain across the street, where we have new neighbours. There's nothing like moving house to generate waste -- except, of course, renovations.

Speaking of renovations, I have an idea about my inconveniently shaped small bathroom. At present, it has an undersized 1973-vintage mustard yellow bathtub that I can get into but not out of (due to flex-proof ankles), and is too shallow to provide a decent soak. The obvious solution is to replace it with a nice, big shower stall, but one side of the window intrudes into the space. I have just learned that Japanese bathtubs are deep, and typically have a built-in seat, but they are typically free-standing (not a good choice -- think of cleaning behind it), and they cost a bomb.

Such bathtubs were not uncommon in Germany 40 years ago ... but the past is a foreign country where they do things differently. Dang.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 12:19 PM

I think there are provisions for teens who want the COVID vaccine (or any other vaccine) when the parents disapprove; but it varies by state. It may involve a judge. You didn't say how old Lauren is, or if she is vaccinated on her own. Is she entering an indoor space with the rest of you without being vaccinated? Where does her family stand on masks? (You'll have to resist pointing out to her that Bill Gates slipped the micro-chips into the Ivermectin, it was never in the COVID vaccines.)

More files transferred and virtual decluttering today, from my phone to the computer and removing lots of duplicates from Dropbox. Around the house decluttering today is simply putting things away. The dogs had an eye on decluttering the yard of one squirrel, but I heard a fuss a minute ago and the dogs returned to the house empty-handed.

I've put away the last jigsaw puzzle and have the wonderful choice of two brand new ones (ordered last month and arrived last week) and three other the thrift store puzzles. I think it'll be another thrift store one now and I'll save the Oatmeal (a cartoon on Facebook and Instagram) puzzles for cooler weather.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 04:05 PM

At that public event on Saturday the booth I was working was opposite a Cutco booth, with all of their high-priced everlasting cutlery. I have had a set since forever but the paring knife and the sandwich spreader thing were missing last time I looked. I walked over to the booth and inquired about them - the guy rattled off prices that totalled $150 for the two, but seeing I was a vendor, he'd give me the two for $100. Yeah, right.

Later at home and poked through the knife block - the spatula one is there, just tucked out of sight. The paring knife disappeared when I was in college, but this afternoon I found the replacement paring knife on eBay for $35, including shipping. It's used, but so is my set. As a friend of mine used to say, "they're very proud of their knives." (PayPal balance used, one I don't count against other purchases.)

It's 103o today. I'm puttering around the fringes of things, I'll be putting more string in my weed whacker bobbin, fill up the tank on the mower, etc, and take care of the mowing and trimming later in the day or tomorrow when it's cooler. I might as well be inside ordering cutlery and checking out the health of small appliances. And I can distribute some more okra. I'm really tired of picking okra, so I may have to cut the plants down to end this daily ritual. It loves this heat. (Once it cools some of the other garden produce will be happier and grow larger, in particular the peppers and eggplant.)


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 20 Sep 21 - 04:10 PM

Lauren is 14, and she wears a mask. Her mum believes in the disease, but not Big Pharma or, indeed, Health Canada backed up by the Centers for Disease Control and the US Food and Drug Administration.

I think Lauren is a little too young and a lot too biddable to just go get herself jabbed whatever her mum says.

Another huge bag of cat litter today. I just realized that I have stopped counting how many large or significant whatevers have gone by since Edmund died, though I don’t think the tenth of any month will ever pass without a pang.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Sep 21 - 10:24 AM

Humans notice patterns, and counting and comparing is how we keep track of loved ones. In three weeks one of my big patterns kicks in; my father's last email to his friend Jean was on what we believe is the night he died, in the evening after taking his shower (pulmonary embolism "he didn't know what hit him") but the neighbor was accustomed to Dad being away for days at a time so didn't go looking for him in the house until a week later. So we have two dates - the public one of later in November (coroner) and the family one based upon email and missed appointments (early in November). And that was more than 2 decades ago.

We are having what amounts to "weather" here today, occasional rumblings as a narrow band of storms passed over. No precipitation here, and it has moved past, but there is still one worried dog in her Thundershirt. When Pepper is so distracted she stops eating her breakfast, we know it's weathering out. The high today is supposed to be wonderful - only 86 - after 103 yesterday.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Sep 21 - 02:57 PM

Does using up leftovers in the fridge count as decluttering? I'm clearing out some of the containers and putting them back into the cupboard. As much as possible I store food in reusable containers (Rubbermaid, poor-man's-Tupperware from restaurants, jars with screw on lids, canning jars with reused lids and rings, etc.) I try not to use as much foil or plastic wrap as I used to, though I have upped the amount of parchment since getting the lifetime-supply-sized boxes at Costco. It's a lot easier to put down that paper than it is to grease and flour a pan, or just grease a pan, or for that matter to chip off something from a pan you didn't grease because you didn't think you had to. (Don't let cookies cool on the pan).

One thing I don't use much of any more is Tupperware. It's just too damned expensive for what it does. Rubbermaid won my heart over with their stacking containers and red lids that click together if you need that stability in the stack. And some of the no-name plastic items I find at The Container Store (I go there for special shaped containers).


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Sep 21 - 11:34 AM

This morning started in the high-60s - nice! It's an invitation to finish a couple of projects and do some regular yard work I've managed to postpone for weeks. And the sprinkler is running in the vegetable garden.

Aw, well, it's 45 minutes later now and I've just hung up from returning a call to a very old (82!) friend who is back in the state but still about 5 hours away. She sold her house in Arizona and moved in here with her son; they have plans to buy a house with a mother-in-law suite but real estate is through the roof right now so they're staying in her son's rental until he sells the business he runs. She always manages to give away furniture when she needs to and find more when she needs to. I don't dare let her in here to "organize" or she'll toss everything and those few items I really need to keep track of will be gone. There is "organize" and then there is "wildfire passes through."


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 22 Sep 21 - 01:56 PM

When I'm in other people's space, I keep my hands and my opinions to myself -- at least with respect to their stuff and where they keep it. Otherwise, I'd be like your wildfire friend.

As many predicted, the federal election changed nothing for most of us, although members of the Conservative and Green parties are probably shaping up for internal strife over programs and leadership. Yawn.

The business with the serially numbered ballots is apparently limited to municipal elections, because the federal process is much simpler and far more secure. The District Returning Officer opened the ballot box (good thing I had a knife) in front of me (my position is officially called "recorder") and the third member of the team, the "observer". Then the DRO started pulling out ballots. He unfolded each one, said the selected candidate's name out loud (important) and showed it to me. I also said the candidate's name out loud and marked the tally sheet accordingly. The observer took each ballot and put it on the stack with all the others for that candidate. The voter's name is never connected to the ballot at all. I believe Canadian federal elections have been done this way since before the Great War.

The hard part comes after the actual counting. The number of ballots cast in the poll has to match the number of ballots issued to the District Returning Office, and to the number of electors who voted. When the polls close, the poll clerk is supposed to report the number of electors crossed off the voters' list and the number who voted by Registration Certificate, but -- alas -- those data were not provided to us, probably because ours was an Advance Poll. So we had to go through the entire list of electors in Poll 607 (Milverton) and count up those who were struck off on arrival, but of course we were still short those who used Registration Certificates because they were not on the list. By the time we gave up, it was about half-past one in the morning and we were quite exhausted. Checking out with the Area Returning Officer took till two, and it must have been nearly three when I finally hit the sack.

Tuesday was a wash; I was almost too tired to think. I barely tolerated the Zoom session about the choir's Annual General Meeting on Friday, checking out early before I yelled at one exec member to talk into her damn microphone and get to the fucking point. The rest of the day was spent in a half-doze.

Aquafit this morning, and I weighed myself. I have lost seven pounds since last Monday -- all bloat, I'm sure. But my jeans already fit better, I'm drinking more water, and my nutrient balance has improved (more lean protein, in particular) thanks to the tracking application. So that's all good.

It's raining stair-rods in Stratford today, and likely to keep on like that for the rest of the week. So I won't be indulging in long-range walks for a few days.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Sep 21 - 02:23 PM

Before heading out to mow I checked messages on my phone and learned of the death of the guitar teacher my son studied with all through high school. I called to tell him, then forwarded the announcement. And told the rest of the family, all who met this fellow several times over the years. Unrelated to the loss of a friend and mentor to my son is the realization that he was two years younger than me almost to the day. This is the wrong kind of decluttering, a name crossed off of the contacts list.

The ex-son-in-law of a friend died last year and his grown children never did much about the house or his estate. An attorney neighbor of their mother's offered to help with probate, but nothing happened and the house went back to the bank. The front door lock was changed but not the back, so apparently family go in and out to look for stuff. He was four years younger than me, and he was a hoarder, part of the reason there was little interest in taking on the project, and he had financed the house to the hilt to support living beyond his means, so there wasn't going to be much cash coming out of it (though with the price of real estate now, I still think that was a foolish move. Hire a huge dumpster and start hauling out the garage door - in effect tip the house on end to empty it, then sell it broom clean and they'd have made some money.) He had lost the respect of just about any one who knew him with his sociopathic passive-aggressive approach to parenting and partnering. There was no funeral, no donations suggested. No obituary.

The teacher who died ran a guitar studio and one of his oldest students has promised to step up and keep the institution running. They were involved with community concerts every year and running a guitar program in one of the middle or high schools on the north side of town. They did a lot of giving back to the community.

How you live your life can make a big difference in how you're treated once you're gone. It isn't about the stuff, it's about the people (and if the stuff became more important than people.)


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 23 Sep 21 - 10:25 AM

I've been away from this group too long!Sure, I see some of you at Facebook, but here is where the real conversation and community is.

Alas, I don't have time to get caught up right now — meeting some friends for lunch and then at least one of them and I are going to see a film at Portsmouth Library — first one in a year and a half.

But my morning's resolution is to dive back in here.

I've missed everyone!

Linn


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Sep 21 - 02:22 PM

Linn, does your dropping in hint at fall clearing ahead? I know you've sold a lot of items around the house. More of that, or are you donating or dumpstering next? It's great to see you here - maybe a few of our lurkers will step forward and tell us what they have in store for the upcoming season?

The front lawn is looking better, though I see places where I've let it get a bit too dry. I'll run the big oscillating sprinkler to the far side of the house after dark. No point in watering in daytime when a) more of it evaporates and b) it isn't my day to water and it'll be out of sight. It's an ozone action day today so I didn't mow early (that contributes to the problem by adding hydrocarbons to the air as it warms).

I'm slowly drying the basil growing in a big tub beside the kitchen door. I used some of it fresh, and in the past I have put it in the freezer in bags, but dry is fine and is a way I frequently use it, so it's time for a fresh batch. I bring in a few at a time, gently wash them with the sink squirter hose, then rubberband them to a hanger and put it up in the laundry room until they're ready to strip off the stems and store. This and the canning contribute a sense of well-being during the rest of the year, when I pull out my home grown foods and cook with them.

I have a quick errand to run before a houseguest arrives: I realized that last spring I tossed the old rubber bath mat and never replaced it. Good thing the Dollar General a few blocks from here usually has that kind of stuff. No need for Amazon or heading clear over to Target, etc. Now the dog footprints in the tub - I can't do much about that. I'll rinse them out, but I'm always surprised how often those goofballs hop in and out of the tub during the day. It's just a thing they do.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 23 Sep 21 - 06:01 PM

Beaver:

No pottery made since I have been here - so no clutter of work in process! - to look at the positive side. I can feel positive today as:1: my house guests were wonderful; the attic/sleeping loft was swept by them and they used the K wonderfully well with no input from me; Rita commented "you are SO organized!"; They had two days to see the sights and back to QC. And, of course, I did a great deal of sorting and clearing before they came!

2: my depression over the plight of my 90 year old friend started to pass when I found out the family was going to let her go to a nice seniors residence instead of her Grand daughters basement! Talking it over with my guests helped greatly as I came to think maybe what I emailed the son could have made a difference: "I could not have helped you all those years ago if I had not listened to you. You need to listen to your mother. ... I am SO disappointed in you." I have not heard a word from him since but another family member apprised me of the change of plans and I am SO happy. Listening to the other is essential.

3: Today, Dan came and put up much needed, utilitarian, shelves in the studio! What a treat to be able to get things better organized! THAT is a major de-clutter!! Made a good start on it.

Dan is finding a dearth of building materials and exorbitant prices, still. He used shelving he had bought for a future project. We hope prices drop before he gets around to his project!

4:Tomorrow, if it dries out enough, Stu is coming to cut the Alders which have gotten so tall I no longer have a view of the west hill.I am afraid I feel as though Nature is overwhelming me. We can just leave them where they fall - for the animals, and to go back to the soil. I rather hate to do it - environmentally - but it will be done.

Still waiting for Steve to de-clutter the back yard of waist high "weeds".

5:Gave a huge box of yarn to Leslie for her hats and scarves, and a foot high stack of slacks; I am clearly not going to lose the necessary 20 more pounds.

6:Now working on the best way to rid myself of re-usable fabrics. Then I will start on the never used lengths. "best way"= most helpful to the community - Who can/will use it effectively? I realize I no longer want to make a beautiful piece of fabric into clothing for myself. I have enough nice clothes that I do not wear! Mostly wear T's or sweatshirts, sweatpants or cut-offs. More clothes will be leaving.

So, no pots made but lots done, in spite of low energy/depression. If it is not raining on Saturday, I plan to go back to QC via a small town festival where some friends are playing at 1 pm. If it is raining, I will skip the side trip.

Notice from the town re Dupont: cut the grass. I am considering getting someone to plow the whole "lawn" and plant something that does not need cutting. Grass is an environmental crime, one step above asphalt, and I not only hate cutting it, I do not have the energy. I also consider it an infringement on our rights.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Sep 21 - 12:49 AM

Dorothy, such good news about your friend! I hope that transition is an easy one for all of the family. And you can rest easy, that you did what you could and it helped.

I mowed my lawn today before I got a note from the village, but it was getting that tall in a few spots. Now to sweep the pine needles out of the gutter. Again. I did it last week and you couldn't tell now.

Houseguest has arrived, we went out for dinner at a little Lebanese restaurant that several Mudcatters have visited over the years. Word of mouth via Mudcat! The dogs are adoring this visit because they are getting tons of attention and ear scratches.

I donated more of my organic garden produce to the mutual aid pantry north of my house. It's a few quarts at a time, but it means two or three really nice meals with fresh okra or hot peppers.

The cooler weather is such a wonderful break—I suspect we broke heat records for most of September. Soon it will be time for a second layer, even if it is only a light cotton blouse over a t-shirt. Baby steps.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 24 Sep 21 - 10:02 AM

It's still raining in Stratford, and chilly with it. Just like that, Summer is over.

The choir's annual general meeting is today at noon. I have to give the most important presentation, on the big plan for re-starting the choir, and everyone on the board is counting on me to persuade the whole choir that it's a Good Thing. I'm not sure that I have it in me, but I'll give it my best shot.

Great-Niece Number 1 has announced that she intends to visit me tomorrow, so I have a fair amount of cat hair removal to do when I get home.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Sep 21 - 10:19 AM

Charmion, will you have an assortment of parting gifts for when the visit ends? Bicycles or backpacks come to mind. :)

Today's challenge is to send the houseguest on the road with all of the gear that is now in the fridge and freezer. I inherited a nice large sealed ice pack from Amos when he left it behind on his cross-country relocation a few years ago. (That has since been sent on it's way with another traveler.) I have a postit note in plain sight to help toward this goal.

The front yard looks lovely, and as the weather cools I can now tolerate the work to dig and weed and do some transplanting. Rather than just a front yard with turf and two trees, my goal is to give it a park-like feel out there.

Onward to the weekend!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 24 Sep 21 - 05:13 PM

The bicycle is spoken for, Stilly — it fits Nephew 3, so it’s his. Now, if only he would come and get it out of my garage!

The backpacks went to Goodwill back in the summer. There’s a nice big empty spot on the shelf in the garage where that big bin bag used to be.

Great-Niece 1 will be a student for quite a few years yet, so she’s not likely to lighten my load of stuff — unless she decides psychology isn’t for her after all and she’d rather read history. But that won’t happen … I think. (I hope.) Heaven knows, the world needs psychologists a whole lot more than historians.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Sep 21 - 11:46 PM

The replacement luggage arrived today; it isn't as well-made as the one I donated to Goodwill, but all of its parts work, and it has wheels on four corners, not just two. It will work for now or in a pinch, better than the one that jolted along on gear-shaped wheels.

The evening was spent finishing a batch of what I call "nacho mix," with seasoned hamburger and black beans. Put it in burritos, make nachos or tacos. It isn't completely cool enough for cooking weather, but in a week or more when this mix has been used up I'll make something else for meals for a week and it'll be cooler. I'm nowhere near stew or pot roast weather.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 25 Sep 21 - 10:44 AM

Hmmm. Maybe Great-Niece could use a suitcase -- or three ... !

Now that the choir's annual general meeting is over, I am vastly relieved despite awareness that I am now responsible for herding that clowder of opinionated cats. The executive consensus is that the very existence of a plan -- any plan -- would have kept them quiet, but to know that we have a good plan made them wildly happy. They sure clapped loudly enough, and they voted for it with a majority. It might have been unanimous, but I wasn't counting. Perhaps I should have been?

On Monday we inspect our new rehearsal space, yet another church hall. In the post-Christian world that people keep telling me we're in, will there be such spaces for choirs to rehearse in?

Post-Christian, my foot. As soon as the servers started trucking out the soup course (we offered lunch as bait to get the largest attendance possible), the inevitable Protestant pastor leapt to his feet and launched into a prolonged prayer. Took me by surprise ... But I should not be surprised any more; I've lived here four years! Lutheran is default setting of Perth County and, in true white-people fashion, it's assumed that everyone in the room is okay with that.

Well, in future I shall take the initiative and do it myself. "For what we are about to receive, thank God", often truncated to "Thank God", is the traditional form in military messes, and it doesn't take much imagination to make that multi-cultural. (That's Canadian for "one size fits most".)

I finally cleaned the cat hair off the bathroom floor and dusted the library. Yay me.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion's brother Andrew
Date: 25 Sep 21 - 10:50 AM

Charmion, you should not have been counting. That's the job of the person taking the minutes, and you cannot do that if you're reporting or presenting to the committee.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Sep 21 - 11:14 AM

I follow Martha Stewart via several of her Instagram accounts, and yesterday watched one of the Martha Bakes videos as she went through the steps for pound cake. Last week she did a bourbon soaked cake, and that's a bit rich, and I'm not going to make fruit cake (though I printed out Charmion's recipe for consideration, and in years past made the Norwegian light fruitcake called Yulekaka). But this double loaf batch of pound cake would make for nice gifts if I used my smaller loaf pans. I usually make pumpkin/sweet potato bread and banana bread, simple soda breads. The pound cake ups the ante with lots and lots of eggs and butter. Learning something new is, as Martha frequently states, "a good thing."

The new piece of rolling luggage has made its way into the bedroom, and I think it will live below the clothes hanging in the closet, next to the small chair and step-stool. I'll have to move it out if I ever decide to sleep in there again, but that's the least of my worries under those cold weather conditions. Most of my luggage-type items are hanging or on the shelves in my office closet, and the old suitcase was kept in the corner, but it was a major excavation to get it out. The rolled-up backpacking sleeping pads used to be in the way in there, though they are still in the bedroom since the closet habitation. I think if I have to do that again I'll move into the hall bathroom; it's larger and won't warm up as much, but I would be able to actually stretch out to sleep and still let the dogs be right there also. #ClimateChange in the world.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Sep 21 - 10:26 AM

I have received a first photo on the Madrid layover from my daughter; they have several hours so ventured out of the airport for a meal of paella. Next stop, Italy, chosen as a destination because it has a higher vaccination rate than some other countries in the region. Italy has 67% of adults fully vaccinated. I wonder how many more cases of immunity exist after having been ill? It sounded like a plague year in early to mid-2020.

For walking around on this trip she bought a pair of zip-up ankle boots, recommended for their extreme comfort (ECCO). I attended a museum event last night wearing a pair of laced shoes I bought this year for it's extreme comfort (Propet TravelActiv) and they worked as I hoped (I bought a pair last year because I needed yard shoes - and have wished I kept them for regular walking around instead). It's a rare occasion when I would put on a brand-new pair of shoes and wear them with no break-in period, but I got away with it. At the end of the day, comfortable shoes can make or break your day or week.

My shoe situation is pretty good now, and the shoe area of the closet is organized. I recently threw out a yard pair (those that are battered enough they get worn only into the yard are at the end stage for any use) and donated a pair of sandals to Goodwill. To reach this good order it took culling some pairs that I found for a good price (DSW) but never wore because they weren't comfortable. My attention should next turn to sweaters. I have too many of some types (for example, the really heavy ones I wore instead of a jacket, back in the days I was going to work.) I love sweaters, I keep my house cool in the winter months and wear sweaters, but there are a number of them that are never the ones I reach for. I need to either start wearing them or donate them.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 26 Sep 21 - 03:29 PM

BEAVER:

I have not mentioned the lack of Hydro at Dupont due to someone's lack of attention to the bills... It is of so little concern to R that, although he did plug in the frig and freezer in the extension - which was still ok - and did get around to the bill but, in order to get the hydro back on he must be there. On weds, I suggested I would like to know before I left... So I went to my friends' music event - in upscale cottage country 2 hours away - with the intention of either going forward (3 hours) or coming back (2 hours). Still no word from R and &*() if I was going to ask again! I was prepared to do either.

About 2:30 Sat aft, in middle of the lawn concert... So I came back here! The music was worth the trip. It was interesting to see the area, and my friends. Glad to be back here.

Checked with a gardening friend re "lawn". She suggested white... clover which only grows to about 3 or 4 inches, stays green through a drought and the seed can be bought locally. Also the birdsfoot trefoil, yellow flowers which I have seen in Montreal on lawns. It is probably still warm enough there to plant this fall. I had frost on the windshield once last week.

Some of the alder was cut but the real need is what is on the edge of the beaver pond. The water made it more difficult and Stu suggested cutting after freeze up will be easier. Of course! He cleared some before he gave up. Semi-de-clutter!

Leslie talked about lawn mower problems so I was going to give them my almost new electric since I am not going to do that anymore. But she says other friends need it more so I texted Tammie that it is "in the kitchen". I brought it in from the back shed so it could dry off before getting in a car! I hope they come soon! Other stuff is in limbo as I try to figure out where it can best go.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Sep 21 - 01:34 PM

It's almost October - amazing how fast this year has flown past. I've set up my next Bullet Journal set of pages, transferring in notes about appointments. I still don't have a lot, but I do see my hairdresser every other month now, and a few places where there is a comfort level with or without masks. Friends resumed "First Friday" at their house this month and the next one is Friday. Those invited are vaccinated (this week we'll probably be outdoors - and that reminds me, I told her I'd dig up a salvia variety I have here that is kind of unusual. Last month she sent me home with an agave to replace the ones lost in our February freeze.) Dorothy's concert attendance reminds me that there are a few precious occasions to meet and talk with people, though I'm still keeping notes about where and when I'm going out for my own informal contact tracing effort.

I have planks for a new fence panel in the garage and need to go ahead and work on the next section. That won't happen until I make a decision about the gate, so that goes to the top of my "to do" list for October. I need to resume some of the mask making (a few to list on eBay) and that means finishing the work on the sewing machine. Finishing work on the fence will clear space on the floor of my garage, and fixing the machine will let me finish a lot of masks that were started when the timing went pear-shaped.

It's also getting to the season when the dogs need their beds out on the floor - several newer ones that the puppy started to tear up were put in the front room out of reach. I mended them but now I need to work on the covers for those (made from pieces from the sofa cover thing that I don't plan to deploy any more). Another sewing project.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 28 Sep 21 - 03:18 PM

I spent the whole morning on the phone doing choir stuff, and then the diddly tunes group arrived. It’s now three o’clock and I can finally do my own thing.

It’s a beautiful day in Stratford, sunny, clear and warm, but there’s just the slightest chill in the breeze that says Summer is gone, gone, gonzo. When I have recombobulated, I’ll take myself out for a good walk.

I’m doing well on the diet front, with no relapses or attacks of mad craving. Preparations for the interment ceremony in Ottawa are on track. I won’t relax properly until that’s over.

My elder brother (age 68, and myopic and cross-eyed like me) called on Sunday night to ask about visual effects that indicate retinal damage — oh, boy. He spent most of yesterday in the emergency room, where they confirmed that something’s definitely awry but found no tears *at present*, so now he’s waiting for an ophthalmologist to find time to see him ASAP. It’s never anything simple … or minor.

I think I have a new home for the excess chest of drawers, which is a Good Thing on general principles but a bit urgent at present because I need that space in the library for the electronic piano that’s coming on Thursday. No, I did not buy it — yet; it belongs to a choir friend who has a real piano and a husband who wants the basement cleared of stuff they don’t use. If it does what I need it to do, I’ll eventually convince Chris to part with it permanently (for a price); I don’t think she’ll resist.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 Sep 21 - 08:26 PM

Charmion, will you play the piano with headphones or the regular speaker sounding like a regular piano? Mine upright grand needs to be restored and I've thought many times about using an electronic keyboard instead. I look forward to hearing about your adoption of this instrument.

Overcast here today and a downpour when I was in Costco. I was careful - looked at several things but only picked up one item, but while in the checkout line the heavens opened and a 1o minute shower. I've never eaten there before, but a $2 slice of pizza was actually quite good and took care of lunch. By the time I finished the sun was out again.

This is the end of a modestly successful no-spend month, where I was generally able to ask myself "do I need that thing today?" and delay a purchase or decide later it was unnecessary. I'm going to do a no-alcohol month for October. A few years ago (when I was still working full-time for an awful boss and my job sucked and then Trump came into office) it seemed like a couple of drinks in the evening were necessary to take the edge off. Many things have changed and I'm finding other ways to take that edge off (walking, exercise, focused activities like sewing and gardening and cooking).

Dorothy, I hope the power being off didn't spoil the contents of the fridge and freezer. Was it restored soon enough that everything stayed frozen or cold?

I'm wondering where our wandering Patty Clink is now that autumn is here? Is it time to head south again soon, or will you enjoy the fall colors and cool temperatures of the Midwest before heading to the desert?


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: JennieG
Date: 29 Sep 21 - 01:03 AM

Maggie, here in Oz we have "Sober October"and also "Dry July" where folk sign up (it's a charity find-raising thing, usually - I think - run by the Cancer Council) to see if they can last a whole month without alcohol. Perhaps you could have your own "Sober October" and keep the money!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 29 Sep 21 - 08:28 AM

Sober October — what a good idea! And I guess Dry July is the Aussie version of Dry January, although Christmas and New Year’s Eve happen at the same time all over the world regardless of the sun’s location … so, is there a social movement to go on the wagon in January, too? Or is that too much to ask in high summer?

This inquiring mind would like to know!

As for the piano, I see no reason to use headphones as long as there’s no one in the house to complain about the noise — which will often include me singing, and headphones won’t fix that. If the cats don’t like it, they’ll come and yell at me, and I’ll just punt them into the hall and shut the library door.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 29 Sep 21 - 09:16 AM

Not much achieved here lately but I did fit a new lock to the porch door yesterday. Mum’s wanted to go back to enable services to enter the house via keys kept in a key safe outside. A problem there has been mum finds getting down to lock/unlock the bottom sash lock difficult and we’ve just been pushing a bolt across instead. Of course the bolt can’t be undone from the outside… I had a look on Amazon and decided this door/gate lock met our needs best.

One thing I didn’t notice in the pictures is that the fully retracted side of the bolt (either way) sticks out by more than an inch from the casing. I was aiming to fit the casing to a piece of wood barely wider than the case and, to avoid having the bolt sticking out so people could catch themselves on it, I had to get the hacksaw out and cut the bolt down to size. Fortunately, the bolt seemed to be a plain mild steel and it wasn’t that hard to get through but I cut it a fraction too short and the bolt could get caught on the metal casing as a spring in the casing pushed the bolt up.

Printer to the rescue there. It was easy enough to do make a bit of plastic to fit inside and keep the bolt aligned so that it runs smoothly. I also found the trim ring that goes the keyed side was too wide for the space I had so wound up drawing and printing a trim that would fit. All done now. Nothing too hard but what I’d expected to take me about 20 minutes wound up taking me a couple of hours.

I’ve just unpacked our weekly groceries and have a couple of nice looking cauliflowers so I’ll be making cauliflower cheese for tea tonight.

On pianos, mum has a Kemble Minx which I think (although some others don't like them...) is a very nice sounding compact upright. I wondered a couple of times whether mum would have been better of with a Yamaha Clavinova but she never wanted to go electronic. Unfortunately, mum doesn't have the arm movement to play now.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 29 Sep 21 - 12:00 PM

My Weber upright has a rosewood veneer. I see they have come down in value since I last looked, but they're still worth a lot more than the restoration cost. For now. I think the only way to interest one of the other family piano players in this is to have it restored.

I'll be at some friends' home for First Friday this week and will start Sober October (good name - thanks Jennie!) because I simply don't drink if I'm going to be driving. After one of my early visits to their home (they've been doing this for several years) when I arrived with a case of sparkling water, they always make a point to have a stock of it on hand. Many years have passed since a box of wine lived in my fridge and a couple of years ago I stopped tossing my wine corks into a box (because it is something people buy on eBay - amazing what you can sell there!) because my consumption has reduced over the years, not enough to sell. Choosing a sober month means I am more creative in my evening beverages (decaff tea, sparkling water, etc.) and it means I'm saving a few dollars a week (I tend to buy the least expensive bottles of specific varieties in the stores that have a good variety of nice inexpensive wine - Aldi, Trader Joe's, Costco—Pinot Noir, Merlot, Temperanillo, Malbec, Chianti, etc. Mostly reds.) Mostly because it feels good to set aside what becomes a habit in exchange for healthier habits.

Strange dream last night about cutting brush and needing to move more sticks to the curb - I think in the dream one of the dogs hauled a long stick through the dog door. When I fed them this morning I found myself wondering where the big stick came from, then realized it was just the dream. Heh. I still need to sweep - we had rain yesterday so it is a combination of muddy footprints and sticks they chewed earlier in the week.

The only other purchases needed this month are a prescription and gas; I'll coast into October without needing to buy anything else.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 29 Sep 21 - 02:35 PM

Went down cellar yesterday (three times, actually) for the first time in a long time. I avoid the cellar stairs because they're especially hard on my knees — only something to hold on to about half way down — no place to put a handrail on either side without causing other complications). Had to open the door down back for the furnace cleaning guy. (Yes, that's one more thing checked off the annual list.)

Took some empty storage boxes down while I was at it — and brought up a couple boxes to cut up and dispose of. Also found some other miscellaneous items to put in the "to sell" pile. (Sigh. One of these days I'll get around to actually selling some more of it!) But I need to go down again (soon) and cull some more boxes, etc.

But the treks down and back (along with spotting where a couple things are stored) have inspired a re-do of both the pantry shelving in the cellarway (I no longer feel steady enough or safe to store canned goods there, but larger containers of staples should work) and, when I bring up a wire basket dealie and clean out the left hand lower shelves in the built-in hutch in the kitchen to store canned goods, etc. there. Sometimes half of the solution to a nagging problem (or conglomeration of inconveniences) is just figuring out how, exactly, to fix it.

I've been at a gallop for the past month or longer, and today I didn't have to go anywhere or do much of anything besides shower and hairwash and some usual daily tasks. I woke up with no energy or ambition to speak of but something happened. After the shower I scrubbed the tub — something I SHOULD do every time but never do until it becomes desperate. That must have set me on a roll because when I came downstairs to brew coffee, I decided to do something about the electric stove burner coil that is visibly deteriorating. Initially tried to swap it with the back burner of the same size that I never use, but that one proved recalcitrant. So I pulled the front used most heavily burner out anyway and discovered the pan underneath was almost entirely rusted out. (I'm one of the world's lousiest housekeepers.) Fortunately I keep a supply of those, so replaced it. And discovered I've got at least 2 that are too small for any of the burners so put them in the donation box. Then I went and ordered a new set of four burner coils. Only the one is visibly deteriorating, but they're all old, so it's as good a time as any to replace them.

In between doing all this, I made notes for a couple sections of my memoir of the Press Room sessions (which I've been really focusing on writing lately) and found time to read the thick booklet (almost too big to be called a booklet — I'm counting it as a book on my annual books read list) that came with the Smithsonian Folkways double CD set of "The Village Out West: The Lost Tapes of Alan Oakes".

Oh, and I planned a venison stew (which I need to get a start on) using a bunch of stuff that needs to be used RIGHT NOW as well as the roasted venison from the freezer and a few other things that should be "churned". Now I need to research a recipe for savory bread pudding so I can use leftovers from a couples loaves of rye.

Have yet to start reading this morning's papers (digital all-access subscription), but I've checked off a couple emails/messages as accomplished.

Onward!
Linn


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Mudcat time: 28 November 7:32 AM EST

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