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De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021

Jon Freeman 19 Mar 21 - 07:41 PM
Charmion 19 Mar 21 - 05:54 PM
Stilly River Sage 19 Mar 21 - 04:35 PM
Jon Freeman 19 Mar 21 - 01:10 PM
Stilly River Sage 19 Mar 21 - 12:52 PM
Jon Freeman 19 Mar 21 - 08:49 AM
Stilly River Sage 19 Mar 21 - 12:37 AM
Stilly River Sage 18 Mar 21 - 10:56 AM
Dorothy Parshall 18 Mar 21 - 10:07 AM
Jon Freeman 18 Mar 21 - 10:06 AM
Charmion 18 Mar 21 - 09:11 AM
Stilly River Sage 17 Mar 21 - 03:15 PM
Stilly River Sage 17 Mar 21 - 12:03 AM
Dorothy Parshall 16 Mar 21 - 07:44 PM
mg 16 Mar 21 - 05:10 PM
Charmion 16 Mar 21 - 01:03 PM
Jon Freeman 16 Mar 21 - 10:11 AM
Charmion 16 Mar 21 - 09:18 AM
JennieG 15 Mar 21 - 07:39 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Mar 21 - 06:55 PM
JennieG 15 Mar 21 - 06:27 PM
Charmion 15 Mar 21 - 03:35 PM
Mrrzy 15 Mar 21 - 01:54 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Mar 21 - 01:06 PM
Charmion 15 Mar 21 - 10:21 AM
Stilly River Sage 14 Mar 21 - 07:55 PM
Charmion 14 Mar 21 - 07:35 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 Mar 21 - 11:22 AM
Stilly River Sage 12 Mar 21 - 06:31 PM
Charmion 12 Mar 21 - 06:06 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 Mar 21 - 02:47 PM
Charmion 12 Mar 21 - 12:59 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 Mar 21 - 11:31 AM
Charmion 12 Mar 21 - 09:44 AM
Stilly River Sage 12 Mar 21 - 01:39 AM
Dorothy Parshall 11 Mar 21 - 06:33 PM
Stilly River Sage 10 Mar 21 - 11:43 PM
mg 10 Mar 21 - 01:02 AM
Stilly River Sage 09 Mar 21 - 05:03 PM
Stilly River Sage 09 Mar 21 - 12:36 AM
Stilly River Sage 08 Mar 21 - 08:35 PM
Mrrzy 08 Mar 21 - 01:43 PM
Charmion 08 Mar 21 - 01:19 PM
Dorothy Parshall 08 Mar 21 - 12:01 PM
Jon Freeman 08 Mar 21 - 10:04 AM
Stilly River Sage 08 Mar 21 - 01:41 AM
Jon Freeman 07 Mar 21 - 10:59 AM
Stilly River Sage 06 Mar 21 - 06:37 PM
Charmion 06 Mar 21 - 05:15 PM
Stilly River Sage 06 Mar 21 - 09:47 AM
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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 19 Mar 21 - 07:41 PM

I stick with PCs and don't (usually) miss Windows...

We've had another delivery of logs today which we'll get Jonathan (yep he has the same name as me) to stack at the weekend.

I think I might need to correct the way he's stacking things (A couple of rows in the shed I'm taking logs from collapsed and I'm taking logs off 3 layers because I fear the back row could come down on my head when I take logs from nearer the floor with the way it's leaning. That and the first row he started in the other shed is leaning) but that's maybe a minor detail. We should have a good store of logs for next year.

A first for this year: We had tea a bit early and I took mum's down the field for her to have outside. I wouldn't have guessed we'd be doing that before the clocks go forward at the end of the month but at about 4:30pm, conditions seemed perfect.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 19 Mar 21 - 05:54 PM

Today I bought new brown leather walking shoes — in a men’s size seven, to accommodate the increasingly warped shape of my wonky foot. Once I got used to the idea, I was thrilled. Still am.

New Balance makes essentially the same shoes for both sexes, but their women’s shoes are proportionately narrower in the forefoot. So, once I found out which men’s size is equivalent to a women’s 8.5, I was amazed at how much more room there is in the toe box. This solution works only with lace-up styles, as other kinds of men’s shoes are too loose in the heel for me.

So now I shall walk downtown for dinner.

Stilly, your computer trials make me love my Mac more and more. I so don’t miss Windows.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Mar 21 - 04:35 PM

I think the Windows update corrupted the Bluetooth software. I turned the computer off, unplugged, pressed the start button for 10 seconds (this completely discharges the power), then restarted and looked for the device information and deleted the unknown one. Dell has a system to survey the computer to see what's missing and offered up the drivers for the WiFi/Bluetooth combo card. I then had to let Windows do it's big update again, but the Bluetooth stayed put this time. No dust disturbed.

I've taken the step to get my hair cut (finally!) and to set up a consultation as far as the cataracts. There are lots of ducks to line up for the surgery, the haircut, not so much. Short term and long term goals addressed in the same day.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 19 Mar 21 - 01:10 PM

I'm probably totally wrong but maybe if its a BIOS/Operating system type thing, you could try to enter the BIOS (often F2 or Del) and poke around for onboard peripherals. Maybe disabling some device that looks appropriate then rebooting, followed be a re-enable there might trigger something? You may also see if the "unknown device" remains while disabled.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Mar 21 - 12:52 PM

I think I'm closer to a solution; I've done a system restore (didn't help, but now it wants me to reburn a disk that I burned several weeks ago), updated all of the Dell drivers (still doesn't work) and in the device list there is an "unknown device" that I'm pretty sure is the bluetooth/WiFi card. In the knowledge base I found some techniques to restore that include going back to Factory BIOS, to clearing the NVRAM cache (that remembers what all devices are installed for a quick startup), or opening the cover and removing the coin battery for a few seconds then restoring it. Anything that involves opening the computer involves moving the desk, disturbing the newly-settled dust (I dusted last month), and wouldn't you know that when I start fussing about how peripherals are arranged something needs work. Or maybe something needed work so I started thinking about moving peripherals?

I'll try the turn off, unplug, discharge power, and remove and reinstall the unknown device showing up in the device list.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 19 Mar 21 - 08:49 AM

Oddly enough (again…) I paired my phones with my desktop PC yesterday. I’m not sure that I’ve ever really used the PCs bluetooth but at least it’s there and working if I do want it.

None of the PC motherboards (all similar Gigabyte AM3+ boards) here have bluetooth support onboard but I’ve a USB dongle plugged in the back of mine. I’ve also got a combined WiFi and bluetooth one plugged into dad’s Lenovo laptop but that’s for a different reason. Bluetooth and Wifi are both built into the laptop but I was unable to get either of these to work properly under Linux.

The most common use for bluetooth here (and even that is rare) is between an Android device and an audio device. Both the Yamaha sound base under the tv and Pioneer amp can work that way.

Coming back to cables (of which there are many here…), I’ve just remembered I’ve got a job I ought to do. Largely as I ran the main Ethernet cables outside for ease of installation, I use link aggregation (or doubling up if you like). I noticed when looking at a switch the other week that one of the links is down (probably a broken cable). In one sense, it seems to be doing exactly what was intended (ie a single failed link won’t take things down) but I should restore the redundancy.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Mar 21 - 12:37 AM

I killed time this evening trying to restore my Bluetooth on the big Dell, but even System Restore wouldn't revive it. So I'll figure out if it is a card and arrange to get under the hood to replace it. I didn't used to use the Bluetooth much, but I've started and find I don't want to give it up.

I'm looking forward to that new little bookshelf, but am not so excited for it to rob Peter to pay Paul. I could take everything off of one of the others here and put it in, but then I'd have to deal with all of the current contents sitting out in the way until the new one arrives.

I don't care for garage sales, but it is beginning to feel like time to start setting stuff aside for one.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Mar 21 - 10:56 AM

All of these wires and cords are connected to things peripheral to the computer, and I decided I need to organize upward this time. I have some smallish much-used and loved bookshelves (two 4-shelf "baker" racks and two 3-shelf cases, all folding and all in the kitchen) that are in use, so I ordered another 3-shelf one (Amazon) and next week it will arrive and be set on the desk against the wall and the various devices (battery backup, VHS, Canopis, scanner, other scanner, hard drive, etc.) will be placed on those and their cables running out the back or side of the shelves, giving me more desk space. Just as well I haven't hung art on that wall yet. I moved a troublesome hard drive (if I leave it plugged in and turn off the computer, the computer then won't start because somehow this drive becomes the reference point but there is no OS on it so it hangs.) It's the backup of work from work (photos, mostly) and one of these days I'll wipe it clean and use it for something else. I also moved a couple of small lamps, everything extra that sits and collects dust and has a cord was a problem. With those three things gone four wires were removed.

In my eBay work I often times need power supplies or cables for things, so I think the time has come to empty the extra wall warts and cables into a box to place in the eBay room. And do I really need all of those xmas lights that I have in the closet? The train set for under a tree that I didn't use often and I never have trees now? I think it's time to offer to one of the kids or the thrift store. Etc. I'm making those kinds of closet decisions. There are more papers for the burning barrel as well.

Dorothy, April seems a long time off, but it actually isn't, is it? My ex gets his first Pfizer vaccine today, the second in mid-April. This allows our little family, spread out as it is, to get together after the end of April, a time that can't arrive soon enough! I have until then to clean house so they can come in and we can share a meal.

We're due rain next week, so the week after that I've tentatively scheduled with my friend who does odd jobs and owns a tiller to return to till up the other side of the driveway. It was fallow last year after knee surgery. This will be my opportunity to reshape the soil over there and build raised beds that I'll keep in place. I need to mow before he tills to keep the amount of stuff we have to rake out to a minimum. My to-do list is growing for outdoor stuff.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 18 Mar 21 - 10:07 AM

Beaver:

Have appointment for vaccine 5 April! R agreed that I stay here. I am happy to do so - as long as he cares for the plants! So I can focus on pottery. Weather is going above freezing and I have good access to studio. Gathering energy for a kiln firing - moving pots to the kiln room - tray by tray OR push the entire baker's rack...? When I decide, I shall do. Heavy weather yesterday = no energy. Went for groceries but stuff I wanted was not there. Ordered block of cheese and organic whipping cream from a special shop. Got home and had a sudden NEED for BOOKS so I went back to town (5 minutes) and went to thrift shop - gained 7 to read and one -expensive!- one for R. That will be his B-day gift. Then, I read two - one is tiny, the second not so tiny but fascinating novel. Now on third, also a novel, also intriguing. I wonder about the people who donate these interesting books! I also purchased a useful pot for a potted plant and a nifty small pot for a succulent, a beautiful blue/white dish towel (I am a sucker for blue/white or just cobalt blue.)

All safe places to visit. There have been no cases in this area but that does not mean someone might not bring it with them. Otherwise, I hacked at ice and brought in more wood. Hacking at ice does not do my shoulders any good. I realized that has impeded my potting energy. No more needs to be done. Later today I shall try for the groceries they did not have yesterday.

I ordered a full set of supplements as what I brought with me will not last. And will order one for R - same reason. The "cotton" socks that arrived as polyester are - after strong complaint - being replaced with no charge. I told them the polyester would be donated to a thrift shop. I hate to even give them away but I guess some people need socks, even polyester. In the process, I have received a full refund! AND they are replacing. This, Oakley, is making an effort! I am looking forward to seeing what the cotton ones are like.

Then, I thought to look at the "diabetic" socks I bought locally and just love. Polyester! I feel mortified. They are kind of fuzzy and not at all constricting and stay up nicely. I was going to get more! We learn by these things.

The sky is lifting and a glimmer of sun (10 am) and temp just above freezing. Maybe now I can feel inspired to go to pot!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 18 Mar 21 - 10:06 AM

On the other hand, we've got messy tangled wire corners that I've never worked out how to deal with and prefer to sort of pretend they don't really exist...


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 18 Mar 21 - 09:11 AM

Do it, Stilly. I have streamlined my computer set-up to the extent that I need only one power bar — and that’s really for surge-suppression — and all wires are off the floor. I can now whisk the dust mop or the vacuum cleaner around the desk without moving anything, and my neatnik soul is happy.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Mar 21 - 03:15 PM

Thinking about rearranging my office. And looking at the mass of cables and wires and cords. Maybe this is something I should go away from for a while and let the feeling pass.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Mar 21 - 12:03 AM

This morning I had an email that my ILL request was in, and this is the book I've been needing. Lots of descriptions, diagrams and the "exploded" view of sewing machines (the kind if a diagram used in patent applications). I scanned part of it but I'm not sure if the scanner was doing what I wanted it to do (this is an overhead variety called a "KIC" scanner). I'll open the files later. I have the book for a very long time so can work on the particular chapter I need.

I met friends for lunch; we ate at an outdoors table and talked for a long time, then I picked up the book. My retiree ID got me into the library and checked out my book, then I visited an old friend and gave masks to her and to another former co-worker (like so many of the guys with full faces and beards, he has a difficult time with masks fitting well). It's spring break and it was late enough in the afternoon that there weren't many people on campus.

Mary, it sounds like you made good progress, and Dorothy, it sounds like a good time of year to stay hunkered down and read a good book, but you're getting a lot done anyway. Good for both of you!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 16 Mar 21 - 07:44 PM

Beaver!:

Heavy winds Thurs night resulted in power outage of 7 hours here (I get text notices). Larry checked Fri am and found no frozen pipes - no water spewing! And pulled the plug on the water pump - in case. After brief consideration, and a weather report for more winds, I pulled together a trip back. Arrived about 5 pm and turned on electric blanket!! and started wood stove a goin';, had a bite to eat - toast and cashew butter - and went to bed by 7.

Total exhaustion but glad I did it. Cold nights and below freezing days. After getting back up at 8 am - that's 13 hours! I went back to bed at 10am! At 1 pm I was almost ready to face the world. Cleared path to wood shed AGAIN! Threw a few pots - with well wedged clay! brought in some wood cooked a good meal and ate lots! Went back to bed at 8 pm.

Pots are trimmed but no more thrown. plenty of wood in, trip to grocery - not really dangerous here as barely anyone in store! Visit from Larry. Reading, resting and breaking up ice on walkway to studio so I have safe passage to load kiln. On schedule for tomorrow when temp is going up a few more degrees above freezing. Need to clear the shelves to make room for more fresh pots. (bakers rack on wheels.)

Stopped at Community Trust to give good donation, partly in thanks for Larry and Mike doing chimney - so I could come home! Otherwise, reading and computing. And resting. AND managed to get appointments for vaccine - 5 April and 26 July. Talked to R about staying here until after first shot. He is having to keep the 100+ plants alive. That will give me time to accomplish the pots on order and some more for the shop, rather than make another trip back and forth. Best to go back to hot-spot Quebec with at least one shot. Then it will be time to start seeds for both gardens - and that bag of soil should be out of the ice!

Only yesterday did the sun reach an angle that shines on the walkway - between 5 and 6 pm, then it is gone. Very helpful as the ice is at least 3 inches thick and I have not been able to break it. By Friday, I might be able to get to composter! In any case, I love being here.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: mg
Date: 16 Mar 21 - 05:10 PM

i have been on a roll. i really don't have a lot of stuff, but after helping a handicapped brother declutter...i have done more. two large bags to thrift store, plus a smaller of napkins and condiments for their lunch box. I am admitting that I will never make lemon bars in my perfect glass pan. Today I pulled all canned goods on one rolling cart, marked the dates, threw away just a few..plan to eat some expired ones when the tsunami comes...and put the rest into the oven, which i never use, for storage. I rolled the round cart..made for instapots I think..over to my desk and put a lot of stuff that clutters the desk on it..including some chargers. Wow..what a difference. Have to find room for a bin of extra bedding that I had stored in a large, gifted, new suitcase that was just too heavy for me to ever use..gave to my sister...but that can be done. I lost a crucial piece to my vacuum ..it must have flown into the garbage..so I can't suck the air out of the bags they are in. Oh well.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 16 Mar 21 - 01:03 PM

Aaaaand — there goes the fridge, on a forklift driven by a guy from the town works department. Good riddance.

Jon, that is indeed the class of article I’m looking for. Unfortunately, my table is an old-fashioned dining-room type that expands, so it has a four-inch ‘apron’ under the edge of the top with very little clearance between front surface of the apron and the outer edge of the top. Most elasticated table covers fit « up to » 48 inches, so they are very tight at fullest extent, and barely stretch over the edge of the top. Consequently, when the cat lands on the table, the elastic pops up over the edge and the whole thing, cat and all, heads for the floor.

So I want one that’s big enough to envelop the apron as well, thus reducing the tension and increasing the likelihood that the cover will stay on the table. Trouble is, this type of table cover doesn’t seem to come any bigger than 48 inches.

I am off to hunt and gather such delicacies as furnace filters and packing tape. What larks, eh?


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 16 Mar 21 - 10:11 AM

Aren’t tables flat and wouldn’t a shower cap be for a dome? this was as close as I could find in my Amazon UK search but it would need a “shallowish” table with supports not running to the rim.

It was a lovely day yesterday and mum went out round the back again. While she was out there, I decided to do a little bit more grass cutting and had both mowers and the battery strimmer out. I took the petrol strimmer and the leaf blower out and started them up and all looks ok so I think that’s all the garden power tools OK to start the season.

I’ve yet to talk to mum who would make the decision on this but I’m wondering what to do about the patch of chippings at the front which has the bit where the car was parked. It needs quite a bit of attention and has often had weedkiller used on it. My inclination would be to let (or help it to) the lot grass over and have a paving stone path to the house – the only cars that would park there now would be family ones and visits (when we get out of Covid) only happen once or twice a year. I’m not sure mum would go along with that...

We are still making do with the old cooker and we now have another appliance to replace (or repair) as well. The washing machine has packed in. Mum and I had talked about a possible change recently anyway. A fair amount of bedding is going through these days and mum’s been complaining about difficulties in drying things. I’d said that I thought that a (probably 9/10kg) washer dryer would be the best move.

Maybe that will happen now. One day… The cost side is OK but as well as debating having people in to install while we (or were with the washer) making do, so many items at the online shops I look at are out of stock. I guess that’s the combination of Brexit and Covid for you?


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 16 Mar 21 - 09:18 AM

Happy to help, Jennie.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: JennieG
Date: 15 Mar 21 - 07:39 PM

Perhaps a fitted sheet for the table would be a similar analogy? Although come to think of it - that would be more suited to a rectangle or square table, wouldn't it.

No, the table is round, so it's definitely a shower cap.

You are providing me with a chuckle to start the day!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Mar 21 - 06:55 PM

My sister doesn't sew; maybe it's because she got tired of waiting for my mother and for me to finish using the sewing machine. :) Jennie, I chuckled when I remarked about the table cover looking like a huge shower cap, and it still looks silly with others in the group describe it, but it visually is exactly what we're all talking about.

There are seamstresses (seamsters? tailors? it isn't just women who sew, but for so long it has mostly been women that I don't know a gender-neutral term) who do this kind of thing for a living. If you decide to invent what you can't buy if it doesn't turn up. And check Etsy, they have some really unusual listings that might include custom table covers.

I think I pulled a muscle in my side when I was bending over painting on wood preservative yesterday on the next set of fence pickets. The weather is turning nice and I've spent time on YouTube learning how to install the cyclone fence gate. Now I need to figure out if I put in a double gate and lock it in a way that it will STAY locked and not just have someone push a double gate open. Otherwise I'll extend some fence and put a single gate against that.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: JennieG
Date: 15 Mar 21 - 06:27 PM

Charmion - do you, perhaps, know of someone who could sew a shower cap for your table? It might be possible to organise a swap of some kind, e.g. the sewing for.....I don't know, something they were wanting/needing?

Do you have Fabricland in Stratford? They have all manner of sewing Stuff.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 15 Mar 21 - 03:35 PM

Stilly, you’ve heard, I’m sure, of people who don’t cook? They can make tea and heat up soup that comes in a can, but they generally find ways to stay out of the kitchen entirely, such as marrying people who do cook. Or they spend most of their discretionary income on restaurants.

I cook, but I don’t sew. Every decade or so, I might replace a button or perhaps darn a moth-hole in a sweater, but that’s it. The very notion of me going out and buying baize by the metre and, y’know, cutting it to size and making a casing for elastic around the edge — well, that’s just not going to happen in this universe where the sky is usually some version of blue. Something from Amazon or one of its digital brethren will just have to do. Your mileage evidently varies.

In fact, the huge shower cap concept is about right; I have such a thing (purchased years ago from Amazon) for my inlaid mahogany tilt-top table, which is 40 inches in diameter and therefore much easier to, um, dress. But similar items intended to fit tables up to 48 inches don’t fit mine because of the apron. Phooey.

The last couple of weeks has been something of a shopping orgy conducted entirely on line. I think I need a Buy Nothing week, or two, or maybe four or five.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Mrrzy
Date: 15 Mar 21 - 01:54 PM

Apparently the SPCA will take all my old tote bags. I was having trouble donating them.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Mar 21 - 01:06 PM

I have a little oak table in my kitchen that is 42" across and since my ex stripped the finish off of the top (did he plan to do the whole table? I don't know, it never progressed) I now keep a clear plastic vinyl thing cut to size over the top of whatever tablecloth is on the table. I could also put the tablecloth on top of the plastic, but when the kids were small and spilling daily, I decided it was easier to wipe off the plastic than wash the cloths. Maybe I'll make the switch, I've done this out of habit for years.

This stuff comes on long rolls and is purchased by the yard, whatever thickness you prefer, in the fabric store. I never had much luck finding a small (or one I could cut down) padded cover to protect from hot stuff, etc. You can buy yardage of pre-quilted fabric (double sided print) with dacron polyfil type in it. I used some of that to make a fancy cover for my son's girlfriend's Kitchenaid stand mixer for xmas. Cut it to shape and finish the edge with bias tape. I suppose you could cut it out large enough to envelope that supporting apron then use elastic around the edge or buttons and loops or snaps or something to pull it into place below. Huge project.

Hmmm. Maybe I should make myself a padded cover for my table. I'd have to pick a solid color if I still want the table cloth on top to look okay. If I added elastic around the edge to let it tuck under the edge (this table has two wings so it folds fairly small when they're down) then I would be making something that looks like a gigantic shower cap when not on the table.

As you discard an unneeded fridge (your bin guys may take it back and put it to use in their office) the community fridge project I participate in has a call out for someone to service two of the three fridges, and is asking for tips. I shared my experience with dog hair on the coils - have they vacuumed underneath them lately? They're outside so there is probably dust and dried grass, not dog hair, but they don't cool if the coils are dusty.

So much for my advice for others. The dog hair around here right now would gag a Roomba. Time for the broom and dust pan and getting on working on my messy house.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 15 Mar 21 - 10:21 AM

No one came in the night to spirit away the beer fridge, so I am now waiting for the bin men to come for it. I won't believe it will go until it's gone.

The search for a protective underpad for my dining table continues, now on Amazon. For almost 30 years, I have been using a quilted thing made of flannel-backed plastic that my Dad bought back around 1982, and the deteriorating plastic is now approaching failure. But round mahogany dining tables 48 inches in diameter are apparently rare in this day and age.

What I really, really want is an elastic-edged baize cover wide enough to envelop both the tabletop and the deep apron supporting it, but such a thing seems not to exist, probably because 48 inches is big for a poker table. The elastic is desirable because the cats like to launch themselves onto the table at speed, and an unsecured cover will slide with a leaping cat and end up on the floor in a heap, with the cat and whatever else was on the table, including the fruit bowl.

First World problem number 748.6.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Mar 21 - 07:55 PM

It's quite the usual thing here that when something that works but is simply unneeded is rolled to the curb with enough advance time for people to see it before trash day that things often are picked up. Sometimes by people who can use them, other times by the metal collectors who sell stuff by the pound at the recycle center.

News today that the ex has scheduled COVID vaccines for next week and early April, so by the end of April we'll be good to go in the same car as far as surgery. I've put off ordering new glasses because even if I got the inexpensive pair, they wouldn't be worn for long and that seems a waste. I'm okay with the current RX, and that will change drastically after surgery. Who knows how vision will work in the interim, between surgery and when the vision "settles down" so I can get a new Rx for whatever else needs to be corrected.

I'm back to more reading, shifting away from consuming so much news (the last four years had that effect). I just finished a mystery yesterday, then started reading (listening to, actually) Mark Manson's manifesto The Subtle Art of Giving a F*uck. It's a quick read and interesting enough anyway, but particularly interesting during the period of COVID when we hear of so many people letting their standards slide and simply settling for being more comfortable. That's just one aspect of it, but it's conspicuous how it occurs to a lot of people right now, who might be thinking about what other things they've spent too much time worrying about or paying attention to. As we figure out what new-related things we do need to give a fuck about. Just look at The New Yorker cartoons to get an idea of so many shifts in our behavior.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 14 Mar 21 - 07:35 PM

The beer fridge is at the curb (kerb) awaiting removal tomorrow morning by the town bin men. The BIL helped me shove it out of the garage and down the driveway, and for a wonder it did not fall over. It’s departure should take at least a nip out if the hydro bill.

Edmund’s scholarly and technical law books have found a new home with an old colleague who proposes to drive all the way from Ottawa on the Easter weekend to get them. « Road trip! » he cheered on the phone. Sounds like a bad case of cabin fever to me — that’s a minimum two-day journey involving an awful lot of autoroute. Better him than me.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Mar 21 - 11:22 AM

I woke this morning with a realization - the whole nation (minus the really rich ones) have been waiting for the other shoe to drop. Many people are going to be logging on to their bank accounts or watching the mail for the stimulus checks. But that's the tip of the iceberg. Also wide-reaching are the unemployment payments that will extend through to early September, and the HUGE change is the child tax credit change where about half of childhood poverty will be addressed with $300 to $350 per child monthly payments to low-income households. This was necessary with or without a pandemic; it has been a goal of the progressive wing of the Democratic party for years. We don't talk politics in this thread, but I bring this up because it feels like we've waited all year (pandemic) and all four years (Trump administration) for the ability to take a deep cleansing breath, and now it's near. And with this huge change, people who have been hunkered down for a long time will have some agency, the ability to have some control over their choices, not simply waiting for services that they qualify for.

On the hyper-local level it's a matter of debt management; deciding to pay off one bill to free-up monthly cash during the next few months for other uses.

On a more normal topic, it's spring and I've begun the mowing and digging routine that will contribute to my fitness, and I need to walk the dogs every nice day.

(I shared a version of this on Facebook.)


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Mar 21 - 06:31 PM

I had forgotten. Bummer, indeed.


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

As you may remember from my previous comments about feet, I busted both my ankles back in the 90s, and my current problem is a consequence of a less than perfectly successful repair that encouraged my right foot to pronate in a way it would not have done had I not busted it. Alas, any surgery could well cause worse problems than I have now.

And that sucks.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Mar 21 - 02:47 PM

A friend had her ankle reconstructed two years ago and that was a real big deal because there are so many parts involved.

Yesterday I scrolled through 50+ slides posted by Dave-the-Gnome on his Facebook page, with remarks about the route. It was a wonderful trip up a small (compared to say, North America) mountain and as they approached the top the boulders and slick areas and steepness made for some work. And as I looked at the photos of going back down I thought "That's going to make the knees hurt." And of course, that is because of my experience on the downhill portion of long backpacking and climbing trips. And is probably why my knee was a mess, and my friend with the ankle surgery has even more of those downhill treks to her backpacking record.

However you got to this point, good luck achieving a level of comfort for the future!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 12 Mar 21 - 12:59 PM

I don’t know, Stilly; complicated as knees are, feet are much more so, and I have only just begun my limping journey on this road.

I asked the foot guy that précise question, and he said it’s too early to tell. The cortisone might resolve the problem — or not. But this was only my second injection, so we don’t know yet if the ligament attachment in question is actually improving.

So we wait to see how long it takes to start hurting again.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Mar 21 - 11:31 AM

Charmion, how is the foot feeling? Is this cortisone shot a method for pain control until you reach the inevitable surgical repair? The knee was a hot mess for quite a while before the surgery, and the surgery was the roughest one I've experienced, but the outcome is excellent. If you're debating about going that route (and a different body part, so YMMV.)


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 12 Mar 21 - 09:44 AM

Tune session yesterday; again excellent, and everyone was more comfortable in the reorganized library. We're learning a jig set. It's painful, doing it by ear, but Serena the Fiddle -- a teacher and classically trained musician -- is fascinated by different ways of learning. She is now teaching traditional tunes to her pupils, and encouraging them to get off the dots. I'm enjoying the process of helping another muso escape the bonds of the conservatory method.

Today I'm running the self-clean cycle on the oven, so the ventilator fan is roaring and the whole house smells a bit singed. The cats are unhappy, but it must be done.

We had several days of crazy warm weather that ended yesterday afternoon in the first thunderstorm of 2021. As usual, Environment Canada issued doom alerts -- THUNDERSTORM WARNING! in a red banner -- but Stratford's share of the action was only a couple of thunderclaps, exactly one flash of lightning, and ten minutes of hard rain. Today is colder, but the sun is shining with all its might. The ruckus in the kitchen will soon force me out for a walk downtown for lunch and a visit to the bank, my first extended trot since the cortisone shot.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Mar 21 - 01:39 AM

Dorothy, I think the times of inactivity (or the inability to motivate oneself to get up and do much of anything) is an effect of the times we are living in right now. I have a bullet journal that I've kept for years and for the last 13 months I've noted "COVID-19" at the top of each month's calendar so when I look back I'll have a reference point to what I was doing (or not doing).

This week I got back to making masks; the sewing machine needs further fine tuning, but if I'm careful about not using the reverse lever too much (knock wood!) I don't have to stop to re-thread or untangle it too often. I have a couple of boxes almost ready to go to the post office and need to prepare several more parcels of masks for people. Yesterday at Goodwill I picked up three plastic baskets that I washed and let dry overnight and that are now in the sewing room to help organize some of the parts of this work. Multiple colors of t-shirt yarn need a couple of baskets (I need to see what I have when I make these things) and baskets for finished masks (there are six sizes and I've been lumping some of them together). Some of the extra fabric that is usable for small masks but I'll have to do those one at a time on the scraps are in their own basket. This is to remove a stack of fabric growing on the pointy end of the ironing board.

I mentioned earlier that I had friends in the house this week for the first time in a year. I hope to use that as a motivation to pick up and rearrange things. I did some major moving of room contents a while back but the COVID kept going and going and I let things go. A bit. Well, a lot, but nothing that won't improve after a weekend of sweeping, mopping, and dusting before moving furniture.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 11 Mar 21 - 06:33 PM

Dupont:

Very little has been accomplished this week. A dearth of energy. Oh darn! Just thought to check produce store for how busy it is; busier than usual! So much for that thought. I do need to do a shopping. But there has been a huge bunch of covid cases amongst staff and patients at the local hospital - so bad R phoned a few mornings ago to warn me. What to do? I know the stores here and can navigate quickly when they are "not very busy". Maybe tomorrow; if it rains people may stay home.

In any case, a couple days of above freezing and there are bits of grass showing along edges. The large bag of planting soil on back deck is still surrounded by two feet of frozen snow; even though it is standing almost alone, it is still frozen to the deck, AND difficult to get over the snow to get to it. Maybe tomorrow! I would like to start some seeds before I leave. I will have to take them with me to care for them; I have a plan!

I ordered a packet of 5 pairs of socks for R. Carefully checking for mostly cotton. They arrived today with not a speck of cotton. Sent the company a furious email "I was lied to" . I certainly am not going to the trouble of returning them. R doesn't care. He'll wear any socks I put in his drawer.

Did laundry today, including bedding and remade bed. Took car for servicing. Big day! I did much fine at Beaver but have no energy all week. I make BF, suppers and spend most of each day on computer or watching the news.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Mar 21 - 11:43 PM

I did one curbside pickup and two quick trips indoors (the post office after hours to get the mail, and the nearby Goodwill). The Goodwill had several people boldly walking around without masks despite a message over the loud speaker and signs on the doors saying customers still need to continue to wear masks. It becomes a case of who will enforce the rules when stubborn selfish people refuse to comply? I'd kick them out if they don't wear the mask properly, but that's just me. As Neil deGrasse Tyson quipped about the early opening of states: "We’re just sayin’. To abolish mask-wearing laws in some States while the rest of the Nation keeps theirs is like designating a peeing section of the swimming pool."


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: mg
Date: 10 Mar 21 - 01:02 AM

i cleared out a drawer for condiments etc. at my computer/dining table. took an old dishpan and put it under my hanging files where it is not visible and put all my computer paper and envelopes etc. in it. so much better. i can see my desk top. I also got two dollar store wastebaskets that serve as temporary holders for papers and miscellaneous junk.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Mar 21 - 05:03 PM

The garden got some weeding and a few pots were cleaned out and I'll see if anything grows back in them (or not) after that freeze. A couple of vaccinated friends stopped by and we dug up a few plants for them to transplant and were actually able to tour the house, though what a mess. I guess if a few people can come in now I should do a better job of picking up and organizing. It gets a little lax after a year of just me and the dogs!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Mar 21 - 12:36 AM

Mrrzy, interesting about the cat hair. My dogs produce so much hair that every week I sweep a huge pile of it, and when I run the broom under the sofa, a particularly large drift is moved out from beneath. The odd thing is that twice now when I've cleared out the under-sofa I've also moved out small Mediterranean house geckos that were hiding under there. Two of them, about a week apart. In the time of year when they should be hiding in the attic staying warm. I quick grab and release them before any dogs notice and eat them or whatever might happen. (The dogs leave the Gulf toads alone because they taste particularly bad, but I don't know about lizards.)


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 08 Mar 21 - 08:35 PM

That's a lovely vintage sewing machine, Jon, and yes, there are lots of parts produced for those older machines. Measure it and then look at someplace like eBay or an online sewing supply store.

A couple of friends have responded to remarks on Facebook about Salvia greggii that have now been cut back but that will grow from the roots again. The one in the corner of the yard has gradually spread and a few places branches on the ground sprouted new plants. I'll dig out a half-dozen or so and leave a couple in the best position. It was getting pretty big. Tomorrow two friends (retirees from the library) are stopping here to pick up a couple. I have others I can dig as well, but I'll wait till she tells me which she wants.

I finished a half-dozen masks today, and I've modified how I do some of it on that machine. Instead of going back and forward over parts of it I'm simply making a double pass, doing the stitching in forward both ways. There is something that still isn't quite right and it seems to be with that reverse switch part of the mechanism. It works, but I'm not over-doing it.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Mrrzy
Date: 08 Mar 21 - 01:43 PM

Progress: the storage drawers under my bed! One had all my heavy winter clothes that I used to switch out with summer clothes. Found a *ton* of cat hair in the sweater drawer, Sebastian must have been *living* in there, pared the sweaters down to the ones I like, donated the rest.

Other drawer had bags of bags, found a few carry-on luggage pieces I thought I had lost, now in three manageable piles (give away, luggage/backpacks, and reusable grocery/tote bags I want to keep).

Gonna take the drawers out and wash them, vacuum where they were, and put'm back half-empty, amazing.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 08 Mar 21 - 01:19 PM

I rearranged the furniture in the music room-cum-library again to make room for more players as COVID restrictions ease. How did I end up with both a sofa and a settee? Dunno, and don't care. Both are good places to sit if you need space for your bowing arm or the butt end of your guitar. I think we could get half a dozen people in there now.

Strong sun today in Stratford, although Environment Canada keeps threatening snow, sleet and rain. It was the same yesterday, utterly beautiful despite prognostications of doom. Tomorrow we are supposed to see a high of 9C, and then rain on Wednesday and Thursday, followed by an abrupt drop in temperature to barely above freezing at the end of the week.

If this keeps up, the maple syrup producers should have a great season.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 08 Mar 21 - 12:01 PM

Dupont:

Good chuckle this morning from SRS - mowing!!!And us still covered with 18 inches of white stuff! I showed R this am the huge chunk of roof ice that landed where we do not have a glass house! On the wood pile, actually, and me looking for a tempo to use for next year. I guess & R concurs, that something solid is needed. A glass house would be of no use on that north side of the house. With any luck we may see the deck about May.

My friends health was weighing heavily on me after Thursday. I kept checking emails for news "knowing" it would be bad. Sunday, I left R sleeping, had my BF and had just gotten to the email of "sad news" when he came in,needing a haircut and on about another House his cuz is looking at - having lost the last one. I lost it and went up to bed to grieve in peace.

Took an hour or so, caring for Doug, for his wife and for the whole extended family - very dear friends of over 30 years. When I ventured back down, the new bathroom sink was in place! Not connected but out with the old and in with a smooth shiny new one! Lacking a necessary part, we could do a pool on how long it will remain as is. I have been using the tub faucet for washing up for so long, I hardly remember the sink is there and the hot was not working anyway.

He is totally competent in these things and I could see how contented he was to be doing the job. The one at Beaver is so much better since he took it apart to replace the old cabinet with the newer, almost identical yard sale one. The refurbished faucets work better; the hot water flows, and, hence, arrives more quickly! When he gets to it, he does a stellar job. and loves doing it.

I actually took a few minutes first thing this am to sort the patterns I had all across the sewing/TV room. I still have not been inspired to do anything but am grateful that my ancient little machine is ready to roll with no problems. Maybe this beautiful sunny day will inspire me.

As per usual, I have gone through a two day recuperation after driving here on Friday. Ah! Friday! Arose at a good time prepare for leaving and, as I ate BF, looking west, I observed strange light flashing on the studio wall! Out on the deck, I observed a very wonky chimney - had come loose from its pinnings and had disconnected in two places with a gap large enough for water to run in...

Text to Dan - who can help? and phone to Larry! Dan could find no one. L was on the road and would look at it. Re-assuring. Late evening: L removed the snow around it but beyond his agility ability. (Both the professional places no longer in business!) Texted a special guy who helped out before and a dear friend now. I knew he would refuse payment but offered a donation to Community Trust - he volunteers; So does Larry! Saturday: Mike would go look. texted L and he replied - would call Mike! Last eve: pic of repaired chimney - Mike on ladder! The message from L: "You can return". Plan to go back on 16th! YAY! And maybe I will get to have a shot.

I was planning to donate to Com.Trust; I will up it. I know it will help people in the community who really need it.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 08 Mar 21 - 10:04 AM

Seeing you mentioning (and working hard on) sewing machines a few times, SRS, I've just had another go at identifying ours. This time. I think it could be a Singer VS3, some shown on this page

I think that the last time I looked at it, it had lost the rubber on the bobbin winder (I'd guess finding a suitable bit of rubber would be easy) but was probably functional other wise. The tensioner on the left was a "do not touch" as far as I remember it now as was the knob above the bobbin winder although I think I did and find the latter altered the spacing between stitches?

No one here ever got more advanced than that.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 08 Mar 21 - 01:41 AM

On a private group Facebook page a friend sought advice about how to get to the location where he was advised to go (via email from the County) for a COVID vaccine shot on Wednesday. We suggested he take a dry-run drive there today, and he did, though the crowd from today was there so it wasn't like he arrived at an empty spot to look around. But he figured it out. It feels like we are throwing ourselves in front of whatever vaccination needle will come our way these days, thousands a day in communities across the US. "Which one?" is asked. "Doesn't matter," is answered - "Just get it."

My ex came by today to pick up some groceries and we're still wearing masks outside during the exchange. It just seems prudent. While out in the yard today I did some pruning back of dead shrubs; they should regrow from the roots.

I got the sewing machine mostly back to it's old working self, with an occasional glitch that means it's best to simply rethread it periodically because I haven't found every single thing that was making it act up before and that helps. I have one more sewing machine repair book coming via Interlibrary Loan to hopefully sort out the last of this. I did raise the feed dogs a little higher and that is making a big difference on getting it to start at the edge of a piece of fabric; it used to be slow to start and now that's catching better. I still have a screw driver and the can of 3-in-1 Oil in the sewing room.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 07 Mar 21 - 10:59 AM

It’s dad’s birthday on tomorrow and I’ve made a present for him. It’s a novelty Norwich City football. It’s got a miniature MP3 player and a tilt switch inside it. If you turn the ball over, it will play the next song in a set of 3 Norwich Football songs (“On The Ball City” which is possibly the worlds oldest football song that’s still in regular use and “The Canaries” and “The Norwich City Calypso” from a single produced in 1972 when the club first got to play in the top flight).

The ball as shown isn’t quite round. I added a middle bit as to help with some I hadn’t thought of... That is that the volume level drops when the two half spheres are joined together. I could try a redesign instead but at around 9 hrs to print one of the 100mm dia halves (yes, 3d printing can be very slow…), I’m not keen on that idea. He’s sure to like it as it is anyway.

Other things… We had a power cut last week. It only lasted about 2 hours but it left me with a bit of a poser when it happened. Wiltshire Farms arrived with a large order of frozen meals about 5 minutes into the cut and before I had any information on it. I wasn’t sure whether to accept the order and open the porch freezer to put in in or what and the delivery driver didn’t know either. I took the gamble that power would be restored soon (cuts are usually short here) and it worked out OK.

I’ve just had an email that my (mostly) greenhouse seeds have been dispatched. I’d ordered them a while back but the company said they were struggling (staff shortage with Covid and the busy time of year for them) and there would be a delay. I should have them in the next couple of days and will start planting the seeds in the propagator in the porch.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Mar 21 - 06:37 PM

Since reading Dorothy's recent remarks I've had my eyes (and ears) open for news that might describe this. It is surprising - but as you say, procurement is separate from other health care activities.

I made a trip to Town Talk and bought a flat of strawberries to replace the fruit that thawed during the freeze (and how ironic is that?). The fruit was cold but thawed so I made a big batch of pancake syrup and froze most of it. Now I'll wash and de-stem these berries (a case is 8 pints) and put them back in the freezer. It's what I use to make smoothies.

Community Fridge: I took 2 dozen packets of shelf-stable meals—mac & cheese and basmati rice packets that get microwaved for a minute and are ready to eat. These are particularly helpful for homeless because they don't require a can-opener, etc. I'm pacing myself on my contributions; as more people learn about this project I can go up every week or two and be one of many adding to the project.

I have to mow the back yard. Spring is here.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 06 Mar 21 - 05:15 PM

I listened.

She’s right, in every particular. Mr Trudeau and his parliamentary friends are not handling this mission well. I think it’s lack of experience; the Canadian federal government does not do procurements quickly, and hasn’t bought large quantities of vaccines in living memory. In combination with the loss of the Connaught Laboratory back in the 90s, those issues have led to a massive failure.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Mar 21 - 09:47 AM

There is a public radio program called The World and I noted a story yesterday I wanted to share:

Canada’s problematic vaccination campaign
Canada typically gets a lot of praise for its health care system. But when it comes to distributing COVID-19 vaccines, the praise has been short in coming for two very different reasons. Host Carol Hills speaks with Jillian Kohler, a University of Toronto professor focused on global access to medicines and an adviser with the World Health Organization.


The whole story isn't transcribed, so I hope it can be heard north of the border. Considering the name, it should be heard anywhere!


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