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FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux

Stilly River Sage 31 Dec 21 - 06:02 PM
Stilly River Sage 31 Dec 21 - 10:36 PM
Charmion 01 Jan 22 - 09:57 AM
Mrrzy 01 Jan 22 - 11:17 AM
Stilly River Sage 01 Jan 22 - 01:19 PM
Dorothy Parshall 01 Jan 22 - 06:57 PM
keberoxu 01 Jan 22 - 08:38 PM
Stilly River Sage 01 Jan 22 - 10:11 PM
Charmion 02 Jan 22 - 08:36 AM
Dorothy Parshall 02 Jan 22 - 10:25 AM
Stilly River Sage 02 Jan 22 - 03:42 PM
Sandra in Sydney 03 Jan 22 - 07:08 AM
pattyClink 03 Jan 22 - 12:12 PM
Stilly River Sage 03 Jan 22 - 12:23 PM
Charmion 03 Jan 22 - 03:32 PM
Sandra in Sydney 03 Jan 22 - 04:26 PM
pattyClink 03 Jan 22 - 04:45 PM
JennieG 03 Jan 22 - 08:07 PM
Stilly River Sage 03 Jan 22 - 09:15 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Jan 22 - 12:29 PM
Donuel 04 Jan 22 - 12:53 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Jan 22 - 02:20 PM
Donuel 04 Jan 22 - 05:05 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Jan 22 - 09:52 PM
Stilly River Sage 05 Jan 22 - 11:42 AM
Mrrzy 05 Jan 22 - 01:04 PM
Stilly River Sage 05 Jan 22 - 03:12 PM
Donuel 05 Jan 22 - 06:31 PM
Jon Freeman 06 Jan 22 - 08:45 AM
Stilly River Sage 06 Jan 22 - 12:56 PM
Stilly River Sage 07 Jan 22 - 11:58 AM
Charmion 07 Jan 22 - 01:05 PM
Steve Shaw 07 Jan 22 - 01:25 PM
Stilly River Sage 07 Jan 22 - 02:46 PM
keberoxu 07 Jan 22 - 04:33 PM
Sandra in Sydney 07 Jan 22 - 05:24 PM
Charmion 07 Jan 22 - 06:42 PM
Donuel 07 Jan 22 - 07:09 PM
JennieG 07 Jan 22 - 07:09 PM
Steve Shaw 08 Jan 22 - 09:07 AM
Charmion 08 Jan 22 - 11:17 AM
pattyClink 08 Jan 22 - 11:24 AM
Steve Shaw 08 Jan 22 - 11:35 AM
Stilly River Sage 08 Jan 22 - 12:29 PM
Donuel 08 Jan 22 - 12:43 PM
Jon Freeman 08 Jan 22 - 01:17 PM
Stilly River Sage 09 Jan 22 - 11:10 AM
Charmion 09 Jan 22 - 05:45 PM
JennieG 09 Jan 22 - 06:43 PM
Steve Shaw 09 Jan 22 - 07:38 PM
Stilly River Sage 09 Jan 22 - 09:42 PM
Sandra in Sydney 10 Jan 22 - 04:09 AM
Steve Shaw 10 Jan 22 - 05:22 AM
Charmion 10 Jan 22 - 10:23 AM
Steve Shaw 10 Jan 22 - 11:44 AM
Charmion 10 Jan 22 - 11:51 AM
Stilly River Sage 10 Jan 22 - 12:21 PM
keberoxu 10 Jan 22 - 12:30 PM
Charmion 10 Jan 22 - 12:49 PM
Steve Shaw 10 Jan 22 - 01:16 PM
Stilly River Sage 10 Jan 22 - 03:30 PM
Stilly River Sage 11 Jan 22 - 11:32 AM
Dorothy Parshall 11 Jan 22 - 04:44 PM
Stilly River Sage 11 Jan 22 - 08:32 PM
Charmion 11 Jan 22 - 10:04 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 Jan 22 - 12:35 AM
Steve Shaw 12 Jan 22 - 06:04 AM
Charmion 12 Jan 22 - 09:52 AM
Charmion's brother Andrew 12 Jan 22 - 10:42 AM
Stilly River Sage 12 Jan 22 - 01:16 PM
Dorothy Parshall 12 Jan 22 - 07:20 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 Jan 22 - 10:18 PM
Dorothy Parshall 13 Jan 22 - 05:26 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 Jan 22 - 10:07 PM
Stilly River Sage 14 Jan 22 - 02:22 PM
Stilly River Sage 14 Jan 22 - 11:54 PM
Charmion 15 Jan 22 - 07:59 AM
Donuel 15 Jan 22 - 11:41 AM
Stilly River Sage 15 Jan 22 - 12:22 PM
Dorothy Parshall 15 Jan 22 - 01:29 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Jan 22 - 02:13 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Jan 22 - 11:08 PM
Charmion 16 Jan 22 - 08:47 AM
Dorothy Parshall 16 Jan 22 - 09:20 AM
Dorothy Parshall 16 Jan 22 - 09:48 AM
Dorothy Parshall 16 Jan 22 - 10:44 AM
Stilly River Sage 16 Jan 22 - 02:06 PM
Thompson 17 Jan 22 - 04:33 AM
Thompson 17 Jan 22 - 04:43 AM
Charmion 17 Jan 22 - 09:12 AM
Stilly River Sage 17 Jan 22 - 12:39 PM
Stilly River Sage 17 Jan 22 - 09:12 PM
Charmion 17 Jan 22 - 09:18 PM
Dorothy Parshall 17 Jan 22 - 11:55 PM
Sandra in Sydney 18 Jan 22 - 03:53 AM
Stilly River Sage 18 Jan 22 - 11:26 AM
Charmion 18 Jan 22 - 12:05 PM
Dorothy Parshall 18 Jan 22 - 02:00 PM
Stilly River Sage 18 Jan 22 - 03:55 PM
Stilly River Sage 19 Jan 22 - 10:44 AM
Stilly River Sage 20 Jan 22 - 12:11 AM
Charmion 20 Jan 22 - 12:59 PM
Stilly River Sage 20 Jan 22 - 02:23 PM
Charmion 20 Jan 22 - 08:25 PM
Sandra in Sydney 21 Jan 22 - 04:39 AM
Charmion 21 Jan 22 - 11:11 AM
Stilly River Sage 21 Jan 22 - 12:32 PM
Stilly River Sage 21 Jan 22 - 03:17 PM
Donuel 21 Jan 22 - 05:57 PM
Charmion 21 Jan 22 - 07:36 PM
Dorothy Parshall 21 Jan 22 - 09:30 PM
Donuel 21 Jan 22 - 11:35 PM
Stilly River Sage 21 Jan 22 - 11:52 PM
Charmion 22 Jan 22 - 09:44 AM
Donuel 22 Jan 22 - 10:13 AM
Stilly River Sage 22 Jan 22 - 12:15 PM
Stilly River Sage 22 Jan 22 - 10:01 PM
Charmion 23 Jan 22 - 11:37 AM
Donuel 23 Jan 22 - 11:42 AM
Stilly River Sage 23 Jan 22 - 04:35 PM
Dorothy Parshall 23 Jan 22 - 07:39 PM
Stilly River Sage 23 Jan 22 - 08:07 PM
Charmion 24 Jan 22 - 11:18 AM
Stilly River Sage 24 Jan 22 - 12:20 PM
Thompson 24 Jan 22 - 12:20 PM
Stilly River Sage 24 Jan 22 - 01:21 PM
Charmion 24 Jan 22 - 04:22 PM
Stilly River Sage 24 Jan 22 - 09:04 PM
keberoxu 24 Jan 22 - 10:07 PM
Charmion 24 Jan 22 - 10:43 PM
Stilly River Sage 24 Jan 22 - 11:33 PM
Stilly River Sage 25 Jan 22 - 01:20 PM
keberoxu 25 Jan 22 - 01:45 PM
Stilly River Sage 25 Jan 22 - 01:54 PM
Stilly River Sage 25 Jan 22 - 05:47 PM
JennieG 25 Jan 22 - 07:53 PM
Jon Freeman 26 Jan 22 - 07:18 AM
Stilly River Sage 26 Jan 22 - 10:42 AM
Stilly River Sage 26 Jan 22 - 03:44 PM
Stilly River Sage 27 Jan 22 - 11:08 AM
Donuel 27 Jan 22 - 11:30 AM
Dorothy Parshall 27 Jan 22 - 01:37 PM
Stilly River Sage 27 Jan 22 - 08:53 PM
Charmion 27 Jan 22 - 09:10 PM
Donuel 28 Jan 22 - 06:28 AM
Charmion 28 Jan 22 - 08:12 AM
Stilly River Sage 28 Jan 22 - 11:50 AM
Donuel 28 Jan 22 - 06:47 PM
Stilly River Sage 28 Jan 22 - 07:55 PM
Dorothy Parshall 29 Jan 22 - 11:26 AM
Charmion 29 Jan 22 - 06:12 PM
Stilly River Sage 29 Jan 22 - 09:49 PM
Stilly River Sage 30 Jan 22 - 05:25 PM
Donuel 30 Jan 22 - 05:41 PM
Stilly River Sage 31 Jan 22 - 10:02 AM
Charmion 31 Jan 22 - 12:57 PM
Charmion's brother Andrew 31 Jan 22 - 03:14 PM
Stilly River Sage 01 Feb 22 - 10:25 AM
Charmion 01 Feb 22 - 12:15 PM
Steve Shaw 01 Feb 22 - 01:08 PM
Charmion 01 Feb 22 - 01:19 PM
Donuel 01 Feb 22 - 03:09 PM
Stilly River Sage 01 Feb 22 - 09:12 PM
Stilly River Sage 02 Feb 22 - 11:59 AM
Dorothy Parshall 02 Feb 22 - 01:05 PM
Stilly River Sage 02 Feb 22 - 07:28 PM
Stilly River Sage 03 Feb 22 - 10:53 AM
Charmion 03 Feb 22 - 12:49 PM
Dorothy Parshall 03 Feb 22 - 02:17 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Feb 22 - 12:09 AM
Charmion 04 Feb 22 - 08:55 AM
Donuel 04 Feb 22 - 09:17 AM
Charmion 04 Feb 22 - 09:50 AM
Stilly River Sage 04 Feb 22 - 10:40 AM
Dorothy Parshall 04 Feb 22 - 03:19 PM
Charmion 04 Feb 22 - 06:17 PM
Stilly River Sage 05 Feb 22 - 11:37 AM
Charmion 05 Feb 22 - 04:41 PM
Stilly River Sage 05 Feb 22 - 11:31 PM
Stilly River Sage 06 Feb 22 - 10:40 AM
Charmion 06 Feb 22 - 10:55 AM
Dorothy Parshall 06 Feb 22 - 12:42 PM
Stilly River Sage 07 Feb 22 - 12:25 PM
Charmion 07 Feb 22 - 03:52 PM
Donuel 07 Feb 22 - 05:42 PM
Stilly River Sage 07 Feb 22 - 11:57 PM
Dorothy Parshall 08 Feb 22 - 08:51 PM
Charmion 09 Feb 22 - 08:26 AM
Dorothy Parshall 09 Feb 22 - 11:36 AM
Charmion 10 Feb 22 - 10:04 AM
Stilly River Sage 10 Feb 22 - 10:38 AM
Dorothy Parshall 10 Feb 22 - 03:29 PM
Stilly River Sage 10 Feb 22 - 09:25 PM
Stilly River Sage 11 Feb 22 - 01:50 PM
Charmion 11 Feb 22 - 05:48 PM
Stilly River Sage 11 Feb 22 - 07:10 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 Feb 22 - 10:15 AM
Dorothy Parshall 12 Feb 22 - 03:43 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 Feb 22 - 10:14 AM
Dorothy Parshall 13 Feb 22 - 08:53 PM
Stilly River Sage 14 Feb 22 - 10:42 AM
Charmion 14 Feb 22 - 12:41 PM
Charmion's brother Andrew 14 Feb 22 - 12:48 PM
Jon Freeman 14 Feb 22 - 12:52 PM
Stilly River Sage 14 Feb 22 - 06:51 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Feb 22 - 10:50 AM
Stilly River Sage 16 Feb 22 - 10:05 AM
Jon Freeman 16 Feb 22 - 10:37 AM
Charmion 16 Feb 22 - 11:42 AM
Dorothy Parshall 16 Feb 22 - 10:18 PM
Stilly River Sage 17 Feb 22 - 04:19 PM
Stilly River Sage 18 Feb 22 - 10:48 AM
Charmion 19 Feb 22 - 09:35 AM
Dorothy Parshall 19 Feb 22 - 12:26 PM
Stilly River Sage 19 Feb 22 - 12:57 PM
Stilly River Sage 20 Feb 22 - 05:35 PM
Charmion 21 Feb 22 - 11:01 AM
Stilly River Sage 21 Feb 22 - 11:15 AM
Stilly River Sage 21 Feb 22 - 06:33 PM
Stilly River Sage 22 Feb 22 - 10:20 AM
Charmion 23 Feb 22 - 09:21 AM
Jon Freeman 23 Feb 22 - 09:47 AM
Stilly River Sage 23 Feb 22 - 10:28 AM
Charmion 23 Feb 22 - 01:50 PM
Stilly River Sage 23 Feb 22 - 03:04 PM
Charmion 23 Feb 22 - 05:30 PM
Stilly River Sage 23 Feb 22 - 11:02 PM
Jon Freeman 24 Feb 22 - 03:52 AM
Stilly River Sage 24 Feb 22 - 07:43 AM
Mrrzy 24 Feb 22 - 11:27 AM
Charmion 24 Feb 22 - 11:30 AM
Stilly River Sage 24 Feb 22 - 04:46 PM
Donuel 24 Feb 22 - 06:18 PM
Stilly River Sage 24 Feb 22 - 06:41 PM
Stilly River Sage 25 Feb 22 - 11:09 AM
Charmion 25 Feb 22 - 02:10 PM
Stilly River Sage 25 Feb 22 - 02:50 PM
Stilly River Sage 27 Feb 22 - 11:58 AM
Charmion 27 Feb 22 - 05:19 PM
Charmion's brother Andrew 27 Feb 22 - 05:40 PM
Stilly River Sage 28 Feb 22 - 04:50 PM
Charmion 02 Mar 22 - 11:23 AM
Donuel 02 Mar 22 - 11:46 AM
Stilly River Sage 02 Mar 22 - 02:01 PM
Stilly River Sage 03 Mar 22 - 11:12 PM
keberoxu 03 Mar 22 - 11:25 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Mar 22 - 12:14 AM
Stilly River Sage 04 Mar 22 - 11:05 AM
Donuel 04 Mar 22 - 06:12 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Mar 22 - 10:03 PM
keberoxu 13 Mar 22 - 09:17 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 Mar 22 - 10:16 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Mar 22 - 05:14 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Mar 22 - 09:20 PM
Stilly River Sage 16 Mar 22 - 12:06 AM
Steve Shaw 16 Mar 22 - 12:46 PM
Stilly River Sage 16 Mar 22 - 02:18 PM
Stilly River Sage 16 Mar 22 - 04:03 PM
Dorothy Parshall 16 Mar 22 - 06:19 PM
Charmion 17 Mar 22 - 10:50 AM
Donuel 17 Mar 22 - 03:10 PM
Stilly River Sage 10 Apr 22 - 09:43 PM
Stilly River Sage 11 Apr 22 - 05:13 PM
Dorothy Parshall 12 Apr 22 - 05:14 PM
Jon Freeman 13 Apr 22 - 04:11 AM
Donuel 13 Apr 22 - 07:57 AM
Stilly River Sage 13 Apr 22 - 10:24 AM
Jon Freeman 13 Apr 22 - 11:11 AM
Donuel 13 Apr 22 - 04:56 PM
Stilly River Sage 14 Apr 22 - 09:22 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Apr 22 - 11:58 AM
Charmion 15 Apr 22 - 06:23 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Apr 22 - 10:06 PM
Dorothy Parshall 16 Apr 22 - 10:33 AM
Charmion 16 Apr 22 - 12:46 PM
Donuel 16 Apr 22 - 01:31 PM
Stilly River Sage 16 Apr 22 - 02:32 PM
Donuel 16 Apr 22 - 04:48 PM
Stilly River Sage 16 Apr 22 - 11:20 PM
Charmion 17 Apr 22 - 08:20 AM
Stilly River Sage 17 Apr 22 - 09:57 AM
Jon Freeman 17 Apr 22 - 10:39 AM
Stilly River Sage 17 Apr 22 - 11:18 AM
Stilly River Sage 17 Apr 22 - 11:54 PM
Steve Shaw 18 Apr 22 - 06:10 AM
Stilly River Sage 18 Apr 22 - 11:23 AM
Dorothy Parshall 18 Apr 22 - 11:56 AM
Stilly River Sage 18 Apr 22 - 12:50 PM
Stilly River Sage 19 Apr 22 - 11:16 AM
Dorothy Parshall 19 Apr 22 - 11:53 AM
Stilly River Sage 19 Apr 22 - 12:14 PM
Charmion 19 Apr 22 - 12:28 PM
Dorothy Parshall 20 Apr 22 - 06:57 PM
Donuel 20 Apr 22 - 09:41 PM
Stilly River Sage 21 Apr 22 - 12:09 AM
Senoufou 21 Apr 22 - 02:18 AM
Jon Freeman 21 Apr 22 - 03:54 AM
Stilly River Sage 21 Apr 22 - 06:55 PM
Dorothy Parshall 21 Apr 22 - 08:21 PM
Jon Freeman 22 Apr 22 - 06:39 AM
Stilly River Sage 22 Apr 22 - 11:24 AM
Stilly River Sage 22 Apr 22 - 10:36 PM
Charmion 23 Apr 22 - 01:28 PM
Stilly River Sage 24 Apr 22 - 12:53 AM
Stilly River Sage 24 Apr 22 - 10:02 PM
Stilly River Sage 26 Apr 22 - 05:01 PM
Stilly River Sage 27 Apr 22 - 12:59 PM
Dorothy Parshall 28 Apr 22 - 12:37 PM
Stilly River Sage 28 Apr 22 - 06:30 PM
Stilly River Sage 29 Apr 22 - 07:26 PM
Donuel 29 Apr 22 - 07:39 PM
Stilly River Sage 30 Apr 22 - 12:10 AM
Stilly River Sage 30 Apr 22 - 10:52 AM
Jon Freeman 30 Apr 22 - 10:53 AM
Stilly River Sage 30 Apr 22 - 11:04 AM
Dorothy Parshall 30 Apr 22 - 11:17 AM
Charmion 01 May 22 - 08:29 AM
Donuel 01 May 22 - 10:37 AM
Stilly River Sage 01 May 22 - 12:28 PM
Donuel 01 May 22 - 02:48 PM
Stilly River Sage 01 May 22 - 04:17 PM
Donuel 01 May 22 - 04:43 PM
Stilly River Sage 01 May 22 - 05:45 PM
Stilly River Sage 02 May 22 - 12:36 PM
Dorothy Parshall 02 May 22 - 10:50 PM
Stilly River Sage 03 May 22 - 01:11 AM
Stilly River Sage 04 May 22 - 11:48 AM
Donuel 04 May 22 - 03:12 PM
Dorothy Parshall 04 May 22 - 04:56 PM
Donuel 04 May 22 - 05:36 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 May 22 - 06:07 PM
Donuel 04 May 22 - 08:47 PM
Stilly River Sage 08 May 22 - 01:20 PM
Dorothy Parshall 08 May 22 - 04:53 PM
Donuel 08 May 22 - 07:53 PM
Stilly River Sage 09 May 22 - 02:11 PM
Stilly River Sage 09 May 22 - 05:04 PM
Charmion 09 May 22 - 05:37 PM
Charmion's brother Andrew 09 May 22 - 06:20 PM
Dorothy Parshall 09 May 22 - 09:12 PM
Stilly River Sage 10 May 22 - 03:55 PM
Donuel 10 May 22 - 07:39 PM
Dorothy Parshall 10 May 22 - 09:55 PM
Donuel 11 May 22 - 04:40 PM
Donuel 11 May 22 - 04:46 PM
Stilly River Sage 11 May 22 - 06:49 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 May 22 - 10:36 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 May 22 - 11:01 AM
Charmion 13 May 22 - 03:40 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 May 22 - 04:12 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 May 22 - 11:41 PM
Sandra in Sydney 14 May 22 - 10:48 AM
Stilly River Sage 14 May 22 - 06:01 PM
Donuel 14 May 22 - 06:40 PM
Sandra in Sydney 14 May 22 - 06:42 PM
Stilly River Sage 14 May 22 - 08:50 PM
Jon Freeman 15 May 22 - 03:54 AM
Sandra in Sydney 15 May 22 - 04:49 AM
Jon Freeman 15 May 22 - 05:15 AM
Sandra in Sydney 15 May 22 - 09:24 AM
Stilly River Sage 15 May 22 - 10:45 AM
Charmion 15 May 22 - 07:11 PM
Stilly River Sage 16 May 22 - 05:38 PM
Stilly River Sage 16 May 22 - 09:46 PM
Charmion 17 May 22 - 05:39 PM
Stilly River Sage 17 May 22 - 06:54 PM
Stilly River Sage 18 May 22 - 12:13 PM
Charmion 18 May 22 - 02:40 PM
Donuel 18 May 22 - 08:18 PM
Stilly River Sage 18 May 22 - 10:20 PM
Senoufou 19 May 22 - 02:18 AM
Charmion 19 May 22 - 10:13 AM
Stilly River Sage 19 May 22 - 10:47 AM
Stilly River Sage 19 May 22 - 08:04 PM
Dorothy Parshall 19 May 22 - 10:17 PM
Stilly River Sage 19 May 22 - 11:05 PM
LilyFestre 20 May 22 - 05:24 PM
Sandra in Sydney 20 May 22 - 05:59 PM
Stilly River Sage 21 May 22 - 04:14 PM
Dorothy Parshall 21 May 22 - 10:46 PM
Stilly River Sage 21 May 22 - 11:26 PM
Charmion 22 May 22 - 09:14 AM
Stilly River Sage 22 May 22 - 09:16 PM
Stilly River Sage 23 May 22 - 09:59 AM
Charmion 23 May 22 - 11:21 AM
Donuel 23 May 22 - 12:43 PM
Stilly River Sage 23 May 22 - 07:00 PM
Charmion 24 May 22 - 11:28 AM
Stilly River Sage 24 May 22 - 06:50 PM
Stilly River Sage 25 May 22 - 12:03 AM
Dorothy Parshall 25 May 22 - 09:01 PM
Stilly River Sage 25 May 22 - 10:29 PM
Stilly River Sage 27 May 22 - 09:28 AM
Donuel 27 May 22 - 10:17 AM
Stilly River Sage 27 May 22 - 10:59 AM
Charmion 27 May 22 - 12:33 PM
Stilly River Sage 27 May 22 - 01:18 PM
Stilly River Sage 28 May 22 - 05:17 PM
Charmion 29 May 22 - 08:22 AM
Stilly River Sage 29 May 22 - 10:08 AM
Charmion 29 May 22 - 12:15 PM
Dorothy Parshall 29 May 22 - 09:30 PM
Jon Freeman 30 May 22 - 06:12 AM
Charmion 30 May 22 - 07:22 AM
Jon Freeman 30 May 22 - 08:10 AM
Donuel 30 May 22 - 08:25 AM
Stilly River Sage 30 May 22 - 11:37 AM
Dorothy Parshall 30 May 22 - 08:11 PM
Charmion 30 May 22 - 08:14 PM
Stilly River Sage 30 May 22 - 11:02 PM
Jon Freeman 31 May 22 - 04:58 AM
Charmion 31 May 22 - 10:46 AM
Stilly River Sage 31 May 22 - 11:22 AM
Donuel 31 May 22 - 01:38 PM
Dorothy Parshall 31 May 22 - 08:56 PM
Stilly River Sage 01 Jun 22 - 12:25 AM
Charmion 01 Jun 22 - 10:56 AM
Stilly River Sage 01 Jun 22 - 11:31 AM
Donuel 01 Jun 22 - 12:20 PM
Stilly River Sage 02 Jun 22 - 11:17 AM
Donuel 02 Jun 22 - 03:35 PM
Donuel 02 Jun 22 - 06:04 PM
Stilly River Sage 02 Jun 22 - 07:41 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Jun 22 - 04:06 PM
Donuel 05 Jun 22 - 10:20 AM
Stilly River Sage 05 Jun 22 - 10:36 AM
Dorothy Parshall 05 Jun 22 - 09:20 PM
Donuel 05 Jun 22 - 09:29 PM
Stilly River Sage 05 Jun 22 - 10:03 PM
Stilly River Sage 06 Jun 22 - 11:08 AM
Charmion 06 Jun 22 - 04:17 PM
Stilly River Sage 06 Jun 22 - 05:34 PM
Stilly River Sage 07 Jun 22 - 07:23 PM
Dorothy Parshall 07 Jun 22 - 07:50 PM
Stilly River Sage 08 Jun 22 - 12:15 AM
Stilly River Sage 08 Jun 22 - 05:33 PM
Stilly River Sage 09 Jun 22 - 06:04 PM
Charmion 10 Jun 22 - 10:58 AM
Stilly River Sage 10 Jun 22 - 11:41 AM
Dorothy Parshall 10 Jun 22 - 07:48 PM
Charmion 11 Jun 22 - 02:29 PM
Stilly River Sage 11 Jun 22 - 07:04 PM
Charmion 11 Jun 22 - 09:25 PM
Stilly River Sage 11 Jun 22 - 10:36 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 Jun 22 - 11:21 AM
Charmion 12 Jun 22 - 01:13 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 Jun 22 - 10:29 AM
Stilly River Sage 14 Jun 22 - 10:51 AM
Donuel 14 Jun 22 - 10:59 AM
Charmion 14 Jun 22 - 01:14 PM
Stilly River Sage 14 Jun 22 - 02:35 PM
Mrrzy 14 Jun 22 - 05:32 PM
Charmion 14 Jun 22 - 06:39 PM
Charmion 15 Jun 22 - 09:53 AM
Stilly River Sage 15 Jun 22 - 11:51 AM
Charmion 15 Jun 22 - 12:30 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Jun 22 - 11:12 PM
Stilly River Sage 17 Jun 22 - 10:25 AM
Charmion 17 Jun 22 - 01:58 PM
Charmion 18 Jun 22 - 09:12 AM
Stilly River Sage 18 Jun 22 - 09:37 AM
Charmion 18 Jun 22 - 05:58 PM
Stilly River Sage 18 Jun 22 - 07:05 PM
Dorothy Parshall 18 Jun 22 - 07:26 PM
Stilly River Sage 19 Jun 22 - 05:31 PM
Donuel 19 Jun 22 - 08:01 PM
Stilly River Sage 19 Jun 22 - 08:39 PM
Charmion 20 Jun 22 - 08:13 AM
Stilly River Sage 20 Jun 22 - 09:57 AM
Charmion 20 Jun 22 - 11:32 AM
Senoufou 21 Jun 22 - 05:35 AM
Donuel 21 Jun 22 - 08:46 AM
Stilly River Sage 21 Jun 22 - 11:02 AM
Charmion 21 Jun 22 - 05:29 PM
JennieG 21 Jun 22 - 10:42 PM
Stilly River Sage 21 Jun 22 - 11:17 PM
Senoufou 22 Jun 22 - 03:11 AM
Jon Freeman 22 Jun 22 - 03:45 AM
Stilly River Sage 22 Jun 22 - 11:29 AM
Donuel 22 Jun 22 - 01:35 PM
Charmion 22 Jun 22 - 04:30 PM
JennieG 22 Jun 22 - 05:26 PM
Charmion 22 Jun 22 - 08:16 PM
Stilly River Sage 22 Jun 22 - 09:31 PM
Jon Freeman 23 Jun 22 - 03:31 AM
Stilly River Sage 23 Jun 22 - 09:43 PM
Jon Freeman 24 Jun 22 - 05:11 AM
Stilly River Sage 24 Jun 22 - 01:47 PM
Stilly River Sage 25 Jun 22 - 11:24 AM
Stilly River Sage 26 Jun 22 - 11:10 AM
Charmion 26 Jun 22 - 01:56 PM
Stilly River Sage 26 Jun 22 - 03:10 PM
Jon Freeman 26 Jun 22 - 04:31 PM
Charmion 26 Jun 22 - 05:15 PM
keberoxu 26 Jun 22 - 05:34 PM
Stilly River Sage 26 Jun 22 - 06:00 PM
Charmion 26 Jun 22 - 08:24 PM
Jon Freeman 27 Jun 22 - 05:58 AM
Donuel 27 Jun 22 - 06:31 AM
Stilly River Sage 27 Jun 22 - 11:01 AM
Jon Freeman 27 Jun 22 - 11:23 AM
Stilly River Sage 27 Jun 22 - 06:58 PM
Jon Freeman 29 Jun 22 - 09:11 AM
Stilly River Sage 29 Jun 22 - 11:52 AM
Jon Freeman 29 Jun 22 - 12:15 PM
Stilly River Sage 29 Jun 22 - 07:36 PM
Donuel 30 Jun 22 - 08:51 AM
keberoxu 30 Jun 22 - 09:50 AM
Stilly River Sage 30 Jun 22 - 11:44 AM
keberoxu 30 Jun 22 - 02:59 PM
Jon Freeman 30 Jun 22 - 04:20 PM
Dorothy Parshall 30 Jun 22 - 08:52 PM
Stilly River Sage 01 Jul 22 - 11:01 AM
Donuel 01 Jul 22 - 02:14 PM
Charmion 01 Jul 22 - 02:49 PM
Stilly River Sage 01 Jul 22 - 04:56 PM
Dorothy Parshall 02 Jul 22 - 10:32 AM
Charmion 02 Jul 22 - 10:46 AM
Jon Freeman 02 Jul 22 - 11:15 AM
Charmion 02 Jul 22 - 11:19 AM
Stilly River Sage 02 Jul 22 - 11:52 AM
Stilly River Sage 03 Jul 22 - 04:51 PM
Charmion 03 Jul 22 - 05:14 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Jul 22 - 12:08 AM
Senoufou 04 Jul 22 - 02:17 AM
Charmion's brother Andrew 04 Jul 22 - 08:12 AM
Dorothy Parshall 04 Jul 22 - 01:50 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Jul 22 - 05:27 PM
Charmion 05 Jul 22 - 11:46 AM
Dorothy Parshall 05 Jul 22 - 12:07 PM
Charmion 05 Jul 22 - 01:22 PM
Stilly River Sage 05 Jul 22 - 02:21 PM
Stilly River Sage 06 Jul 22 - 11:19 AM
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Subject: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 31 Dec 21 - 06:02 PM

I ended the last thread with a screed about 2021. Rather than start this new year with all of that negative energy, I split the post between these two threads. Here is the last thread, coded to appear in descending order.

Fitness in the title comes first this year, and it needs to come first this year for me. Over the course of the pandemic I've become much better at exercising at home now, using the Hinge Health app (paid for by insurance), and with this development I may go ahead and add the Silver Sneakers exercises as well. I started the Hinge program during the summer and they have you step up the exercises for the first few months. I am up to their full 15 minutes a day routine. I enjoy going to the gym, but COVID has made that feel like a reckless move, and while 15 minutes a day doesn't sound like a lot, it's a lot better than not doing anything.

I'm not good at setting resolutions and following through; in fact, setting a resolution pretty much confirms that I won't do it just because of what it is. So I'm not an expert at inspiring others in this; I am inspired when people who have been lurking drop in to share their news of making a decision to clear out the extra and then go ahead and do it. They don't spend time telling us about it, just report at the end. I know that for Katlaughing, who was the originator of these threads, it started out as a process for her, but as her health failed, she stuck around for the camaraderie. It's a mix of that for most of the regulars here, and we are always happy to have new stories and descriptions of challenges come along.

For many people, 2021 was huge self-inflicted wound. Many of the problems we are seeing now, the stresses on the health care system, are the result of that lack of care (and lack of sharing resources) for the world around. Hospitalized cases of COVID are about 90% unvaccinated. People who are fully vaccinated and boosted are also getting sick, though generally not as bad. What to do this new year?

For now - I will stay home. 2022 will probably be best served by each of us making a list, a serious list heavily-weighted toward things that we want to accomplish in our homes that require little or no shopping or outside assistance. Finish old projects. Everyone needs to hunker down in place for a few weeks and avoid Omicron. What projects will you do? Mine will be two-fold - to start listing lots of items on eBay, and to do more sewing. I now have two holiday gifts and a bunch of masks to make. On nice days I'll finally start digging the hole and setting the post for the gate I want to install next to the garage. I have the posts, the concrete and the gate, and can order the hardware online and have it shipped.

Stay healthy and be happy this year. More than ever this will be a personal project we each have to map out for ourselves. I look forward to reading each of your plans for this venture.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 31 Dec 21 - 10:36 PM

The new year comes in with a bang (fireworks outside, never mind they're not legal) and a minor cooking miscalculation leading to a smoky house—I'm going to do my exercises, close the doors, and head to bed. Pepper is wearing her thunder shirt and has been hunkered down in the hall outside the bedrooms.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 01 Jan 22 - 09:57 AM

The big-ass microwave left the building yesterday; straining every muscle and sinew, I hauled it up the basement stairs and out to the car. At Habitat for Humanity, it was greeted with glad cries and eager hands, and I drove away feeling substantially relieved.

I weighed myself this morning and found that — despite all the booze and sweeties I could consume without making myself sick — I gained less than a kilo over Christmas.

New Year’s Eve was spent cooking, and this morning I put two litres of jellied beef stock and four litres of ham-and-bean soup in the freezer.

It’s grey and damp today in Stratford, with very little snow on the ground and none in the forecast. Everything is closed except the emergency pharmacy and one gas station. I think I’ll clean the bathroom and spend the rest of the day reading.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Mrrzy
Date: 01 Jan 22 - 11:17 AM

I somehow lost another 3 kg since August. I am not looking for them.

I am, however, looking for the purple leather glove I dropped. I still have its mate... stole the pair from my mom in my college years. Google is not helping me replace them.

Bought some presents but kept most of'm for me. Sevetal stuffed animals originally intended for various babies, notably.

Oh, wait, *de*clutter. Oops!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 01 Jan 22 - 01:19 PM

I need to put a new battery in my electronic scale, I haven't used it in quite a while. The news won't be good if I do, but I have been making a diet shift in the last couple of months that should eventually show up. I'm making a concerted effort to have different colors of vegetables and fruits in my diet; not just green salads or broccoli, but red beets, oranges, yellow squash, etc. Broccoli is a good green, but so are asparagus and zucchini, etc. - getting different plant families in there. This has been suggested in the health notes part of my Hinge exercise program, and also turns up in places like the little Consumer Reports health book they send out to subscribers.

Making this a personal goal was capped off after hearing a local NPR radio interview program with a science writer for Harvard and other places of note. Mark Schatzker's book is The End of Craving: Recovering the Lost Wisdom of Eating Well, in which "craving" was a good thing - it was your body telling you it needed something. Processed food, with so many vitamins added (a long-standing practice in things like milk and breakfast cereal, going back to before WWII) it short-circuits our own sense of what we might really need. I've taken several of the supplements out of my daily routine, so when shopping and the asparagus or the onions really appeal to me, I buy them to use. Spinach is something I'm eating more of because it really appeals to me. This process also means that getting off of sugar addiction, off of daily alcohol, etc., is important, because they become part of our routine and can be an unhealthy craving.

Michael Pollan has been writing about this for years, and there are other authors out there who have been whistling in the wilderness. It took realizing that dietary supplements were a culprit to help me shift my practices. I took a core of basic supplements, C, A, E, etc., but would never touch a product like those "Balance of Nature" things advertised on AM radio that are "a full day's supply of fruits and vegetables" in their doses (those are probably are going to kill people.) I'm surprised the FDA hasn't shut them down by now.

This isn't something that is a new year resolution, I've been working on this for several months and plan to continue with it.

Good job with the microwave donation, Charmion! They will find a good home (and perhaps on a counter or rolling cart so moving it won't continue to be an Olympic event)! The box I took to UPS yesterday was 16 pounds, it had a cast iron pot and lid. It cleared a couple of square feet of space in the front room, and now that my dining table is emptied (I put away the ornament boxes) I can use it to stage a few more items to list this week. The photo cube is in the front room but I can put the boxes and packing material in the den. Especially for the first couple of weeks when I'll isolate here to avoid Omicron, there will be no social occasion requiring a large table top. (A good note - so far my elderly friend and her son who were exposed to the daughter/sister's COVID have tested negative.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 01 Jan 22 - 06:57 PM

Dupont:

Grey and damp here today also. And was lightly drizzling when R went out after BF to de-clutter the back yard of the fallen tree. Now, the den is cluttered with several large piles of damp wood! (NOT on the wood floor!) At least a week's supply. And he enjoyed doing it!

Pineapple buckwheat cakes for BF were great - unlike the pumpkin buckwheat ones yesterday which I shall snack on until they are gone! A new veggie stew is going well and we have almost finished the turkey! I have put off the pork roast until tomorrow when the planned overs are down to a lower roar.

I seem to be improving; it does help that R was home parts of a couple days and in a better state, making a serious effort to help me find a way to cope with "no life at all!" The days are getting longer. I am concluding that omicron is probably here to stay and I will have to deal with it. But I will never be safe. The chronic cough which I thought I was controlling chose today to become incessant - though it has stopped for a little while.

My #1 son finally phoned yesterday - instead of a little kid crying because mom was gone too long, mom was on the verge of crying because "you always phone on Christmas". They had a great Christmas with family in WA and I missed it/miss family. They are visiting friends who are like family in BC next week and I could not even bother going to the Ile today on such a drismal day - maybe tomorrow... Work is commencing on their new home and my #2 GD is visiting soon with #3 GGD and #4 (in the oven). The anti-vax GD is also an angry woman so a therapeutic environment is planned.

I spent a long time today looking for a "tempo" sort of shed for the back deck - the right size was daunting but I found two possibilities; we have to wait until the stores open on Monday to see if one is actually available. The goal is to put the wood in it and still be able to walk from back door to back steps (12 feet) but not block the window and not be where the ice came crashing down last year.

That's the way the world goes round, up one day, the next your down....

The plants are my therapy; each tiny blossom is greeted with delight. That I have some blue lobelia blooming in a geranium pot gives me joy.

I looked longingly at an older G. Pyrenees on line. Too many hoops! Just as well. I guess that is a clutter of the nth degree! ...


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: keberoxu
Date: 01 Jan 22 - 08:38 PM

In the week between Christmas and New Year's,
the de-cluttering which I had put off for a long time,
meant I had to book round-trip plane flights
for the first time since before the lockdown
(heck, it might have been 2019 the last time I got on a plane).

Believe me, the airlines are between a rock and a hard place.
The airport terminals are understaffed.
Such flights, as are not cancelled, have got enough staff per flight,
but of course everybody dreads being crammed close together in a tin can!
When the departing flight starts the instructions to the passengers,
along with all the other details about flotation devices and oxygen masks,
they instruct you, when you eat a snack or a drink or a meal,
to take the extra precaution of slapping the facemask back onto
your nose and mouth IN BETWEEN bites and sips.

Being after Christmas, there was no way to social-distance onboard
as those flights were booked to capacity.
I was very very careful indeed. Feeling well enough now.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 01 Jan 22 - 10:11 PM

Dorothy, I moved several plants into the greenhouse this evening after setting up the heater. There were a few plants out there since late November that were protected enough just by being indoors, until tonight. Those put in now might not make it through a 21o night. This has been a strange winter - the last couple of weeks have had days topping out at about 80o.

This evening one of my homemade pizza crusts was thawed, cut in half, and I made a great holiday dinner of sausage pizza (with onions and peppers) and asparagus on the side. The dogs have a good nose for vegetables that they get to share, so were there beside the table waiting patiently for the bottom parts of the asparagus (I break them before I drop the tops and bottoms into boiling water, then I eat the tender tops and let the dogs have the tougher bottoms of each stalk). Usually the night after the holiday is kind of noisy, as the neighborhood hoodlums use up the rest of their fireworks, but tonight it's really cold out there so said hoodlums are indoors for now, making it a pleasant holiday for us. Last night was incredibly noisy and completely miserable for Pepper.

This afternoon I watched cheesy old Japanese monster films (Raymond Burr narrating a story of Godzilla, etc.) and did some picking up and laundry. The kitchen is looking better. The xmas lights that were out front were taken down, two strings rolled onto a holder, one string into the e-waste recycle bag (with a big chunk of lights burned out and no real way to fix them). I have boxes of unused lights I've bought on sale that I can use next year. But will I remember before I buy more light strings? I've bought lights two years in a row that I didn't use, so I probably will remember next December.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 02 Jan 22 - 08:36 AM

Snowing in Stratford, and finally cold enough for it to hang around a while.

Around here, people leave their holiday lights up most of the winter; it’s just too miserable a job to take them down when the wind chill is doing minus lots and lots. I have two measly strands wound around my stupid little mulberry tree, so I’ll just take in the extension cord and tuck the proximal end of the lowest strand out of harm’s way until we have another snow-clearing thaw.

The cats murdered another mouse in the small hours of the night and left the corpus delicti in the middle of the bedroom rug, a Kirman that provides excellent camouflage. Having narrowly avoided stepping on it, I consigned it to the organic waste bin with a decision that, on the whole, the cats are earning their keep.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 02 Jan 22 - 10:25 AM

Dupont:

Beautiful snow falling! About 6 inches so far; -8C - not too bad. We may go to the Ile later if I feel the roads are ok. Told R I will not make BF until he chooses to appear. (Already 10am) Having a muffin for my BF but will need more soon. I love watching the snow fall. The back deck, of course, is lacking that "tent" we are hoping to acquire and R did not remove the wicker chair to the garage... He will later. It sat on deck all last winter but he seems to be taking more of an interest in home things. Fire in wood stove. Cosy.

Last eve we watched old episodes of Dragon's Den - all eve! Fri, we watched several episodes of Escape to the Country. Whatever this is that #2 son installed for me when he was here (2 years ago), has been a great help, when I am far enough out of the doldrums to remember to use it.

Popcorn as a pre-bedtime "snack" continues to be terrific - no nocturnal visits and less coughing in the night.

No snowplow yet.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Jan 22 - 03:42 PM

A favorite zipper fleece jacket is wearing out fast, but much of the problem is just that it needs new elastic. I think if I replace it in the bottom hem and the sleeves, it'll have a lot more life in it, even if it's just for wearing around the house like today. And it's great for taking a nap - if I lie on the recliner I can pull the over-size black fleece-lined hood down over my eyes and it's perfect. Into the sewing room it goes. Better this, because chances are good that if I bought a new fleece zipper hoodie, I'd have two of them, not being able to toss this one yet.

Sunny but cold, and I see I have to replace the batteries in my outside sensors for a couple of thermometers (both were gifts, and were deployed in different ways around the yard and garage.) And another battery needs checking soon - the SUV. One reason for backing into the garage is that if it needs work, just open the garage door and pop the hood, its facing the correct direction. Over the years I've had a number of AAA service calls for a dead battery in cold weather. Though I actually back in here mostly because I live at a 3-way intersection and exiting is easier this way, it's also easier for a service tech to jump the battery and then for me to drive to (used to be Sears, now it's Costco or the Nissan dealer) to get a new battery. I'm hoping to get another year on this battery before that happens.

Dorothy, understood about the plants! I didn't pick one last crop yesterday and looked out on the garden spot to see my Swiss chard drooping. But since it hadn't thawed yet I took scissors out to cut it all, then trimmed and popped it into a pot with a steamer basket. You can freeze chard before cooking (though usually you would blanch it first), so I figure this is ok. I wouldn't wait until the day got warmer and do that, there was a very narrow window of opportunity to save this (and it's a pretty red stem - another color in my vegetable rainbow diet!)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 03 Jan 22 - 07:08 AM

Stilly - re the lights, try making a Note to Self on your Nov/December calendar to remind you about your surplus of lights.

I was visiting my neighbour who has a lot more space than me, not just by having 2 bedrooms to my one, but by not having collections, sigh, or mess - another sigh ...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: pattyClink
Date: 03 Jan 22 - 12:12 PM

SRS, good thoughts on getting our nutritional house in order. It is a good time to take stock and set new plans in motion, in all aspects of life. I don't have them clarified yet.

But I have had great success in the past with striving for the 5-10 servings of fruit and veg in a day.

I saw an infographic that divided them into color 'families': reds, blue/purples, greens, whites, yellow/orange. If you try to get 1-2 of each group in a day, you're getting a wide range of micronutrients.   If I do that, I feel better and have much less trouble getting weight off. And it's more fun to focus on what to eat, letting the bad stuff get crowded off the board, rather than focusing on no-nos.

I routinely just stand in the produce area and look at the colors I am collecting, to be sure I have the right stuff on hand to try to get in 5 different colors in a day. Sometimes that spurs you to try different things and work with the seasons. And it helps to not be shy about just buying one or two of something, or pulling one small bunch of grapes out of those giant sacks they want you to buy. Of course SRS has a pantry of home-grown stuff to lean on, but I am stuck with what is in stores and fruit stands.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Jan 22 - 12:23 PM

Good tip, Sandra!

Patty, if you're still in the RV that's quite a challenge to buy just enough so you have a couple of meals out but don't have more than will fit in the fridge. Do you keep an extra cooler handy for overflow?

I have a mix of frozen stuff (I buy strawberries and blueberries in bulk at one grocery and freeze them), fresh (lots of greens, yellows, and a couple of reds), and the pantry is mostly red and green (tomatoes, relish, pickles, okra, etc.) I started this exercise a couple of months ago, so it isn't a resolution that I would tire of quickly.

Somehow (dog managed, I think) a painted Mexican carved fish that I've had for 40 years was dislodged from a low shelf, landed on the floor and said dog chewed off much of the upper caudal fin. Now what to do with it? Toss it, or find some use that doesn't show the wounded tail? (Said dog got a scold when I found it!) Declutter by dog - another method in my toolkit.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 03 Jan 22 - 03:32 PM

Today I am learning to schedule and host meetings on Zoom. I did not want to learn any more about Zoom than I knew already, but now things are different and I have to.

Why are things different? Because the Omicron variant is surging in Ontario, and we're back in modified lockdown, that's why. As of midnight Tuesday, restaurants are limited to take-out again, gyms and schools are closed, and all kinds of other things are so inconvenient that one feels better off just doing without.

Crap.

I think I'll make myself a nice cup of tea.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 03 Jan 22 - 04:26 PM

Omicron is surging here, too & with right wing pro-business National & state governments, we are in a mess. Our Prime Minister is famous for saying he "doesn't hold a hose, mate" in the middle of our 2019/20 bushfire season when he took his family to Hawaii for a promised holiday (he lied about his destination & was forced to come back early!) Cartoonists & satirists have added to the list of things he doesn't hold - including timely vaccine supplies, leading to the 2021 Word of the Year - Strollout. Rapid antigen tests will continue to be paid for even tho he made an off the cuff remark that some people can't afford them - but businesses have to be protected - even tho some are selling individual tests for far more than the kit price, Jan 3 cartoon

In my state 20,794 new cases were reported yesterday from 96,765 official tests - a positivity rate of more than 21 per cent. Health workers are burnt out but the Premier says "our state is standing strong".

Festivals have been cancelled, & fans & businesses are voting with their feet at a large regional Country music festival - accommodation bookings are cancelled, venues cancel live music, but the Festival goes on ... My fingers are crossed for festivals later in the year.   

sandra (masked, socially distanced & sanitised) - my new signature


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: pattyClink
Date: 03 Jan 22 - 04:45 PM

The chewed fish might make a cute addition to a Beware Of Dog sign!

I've got a fairly huge (6 cubic feet) fridge. I just am determined to not waste food, so try to get just what I will use.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: JennieG
Date: 03 Jan 22 - 08:07 PM

Would the chewed fish work as an ornamental addition to a potted plant?

The large regional country music festival is in my town, and we will miss the music. It's not all "Yee-har!"; some music appeals to us and some doesn't, so we pick and choose which concerts to attend.

I am noticing, however, a certain note of paranoia creeping into news reports, which is why I don't read or watch them. We're not actively trying to get sick - heaven forbid - but we're certainly not wiping down and sanitising everything we own or touch, and we're not throwing up our hands in horror at the number of cases either. After all.....what is done, cannot be undone.

Himself does the shopping, I stay home and sew and play music. I am having a lovely time in my sewing room.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Jan 22 - 09:15 PM

Today I talked my ex into getting a COVID test - he has complained about sinuses and congestion for a couple of weeks now, and if he's not going to treat his allergies with things like a 24-hour tablet (I use Zyrtec) because he "doesn't like long-lasting pills" then he needs to use some other way to determine if his stuffiness is from allergies or COVID. The symptoms of COVID (Omicron) for those who are vaccinated and boosted are milder, with some of his symptoms as part of it. He drove by and I handed out a box with two rapid tests and he has the PCR test scheduled on the weekend. I have another box of tests arriving any day now (but they don't come as fast as other Amazon sales - the vendors seem to have a backlog, not surprisingly).

I'm not washing things that come into the house any more, but any time I go into a store, the post office, etc., I use hand sanitizer when I return to the car. I wear the mask. And for now, I'm not going into any businesses if I can avoid it. I need to get some dog food later in the week so I'll order online and do curbside pickup.

It's a tough week here as we some up to the 1-year anniversary of the attempted overthrow of the U.S. Capitol. Politics and Pandemic are keeping our attention. It's time to escape into some good movies or an audiobook.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Jan 22 - 12:29 PM

The calendar alert for my normal scanning appointment went off this morning, and while I'll leave those alerts in place to remind me of what day of the week it is, I'm not going anywhere with other people. I need to walk the dogs and this afternoon is forecast to be nice.

Staying home for now means I have no excuse for not getting a few things finished that are on my list. Researching my prescription insurance, sewing projects, some work in the yard. Listing on eBay. They're all staring me in the face this week.

U.S. reports over 1 million new daily Covid cases as omicron surges

  • The U.S. has reported a record single-day number of daily Covid cases, with more than 1 million new infections.

  • A total of 1,082,549 new coronavirus cases were reported Monday, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University, as the highly infectious omicron variant continues to spread throughout the country and beyond.

  • The U.S. also has the highest seven-day average of daily new cases in any country tracked by Johns Hopkins.

Unlike 2020, when there was a curfew and there were rules about masks and going into public places, there is an opaque "Declaration of Local Disaster due to Public Health Emergency" in my county. No idea what it's about. This is apparently the ninth iteration of the document.

One of the "Whereas's" includes "These measures include isolation, surveillance, quarantine, or placement of persons under public health observation, including the provision of temporary housing or emergency shelters for persons misplaced or evacuated."

I'm not hearing about any of that happening now, but the county health officials have been putting out as many testing and vaccination stations as they can. That latest declaration is in effect until March 1 of this year. Hopefully by then Omicron will have subsided (but will it be replaced by something?)

So I'm at home.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 04 Jan 22 - 12:53 PM

To prepare for possible power outage I made 2 gallons of vegetable beef soup that turned out great. Generators are on standby, devices charged but the unknowns are more clever than me.
I watched a comic drama called 'Don't look up' on Netflix which is very timely.
While many are without food fuel water and very frightened, we are in good shape. As for books I am finishing Mel Brooks latest lunch money submission on kindle.
I am organizing an ebay sale of collectable toys called micro machines that made over a grand last time and should clear several grand for these 30 year old factory sealed toys. I knew the Gallob licensing executive in Florida and now even have the original wholesale catalogs that are the holy grail among collectors. Because several people are trying to corner the mico market, a sale is assured. The heavy 1:18 scale collection is not as desired. I don't know about the 'Cars' collection that includes all the signatures of the voice over actors at the original cast party like Jay Leno, Sharon Stone, James Taylor... Why toy collections? They are more fun than Widget Stocks. I hope to turn toys into a custom made cello from String Works in the USA. They are very accomodating with luthiers who are flexible and open minded.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Jan 22 - 02:20 PM

Over the years I've read (often here at Mudcat) about the solid quality of some of the older receivers compared to what is produced today. And in general, they go for a nice price on eBay if they work or if you sell them "for parts or repair." Finding them is the trick, and getting them into the hands of those who do the repairs means some profit for me and probably a lot more profit for them (after they add the value of the repair). I find (online) and include the owners manual and usually find the remote control, if there was one (they're all sold on eBay).

There are other smaller things also. You have to stick with what you know there is a market for. The beauty of smart phones is that while in a thrift store or at an estate sale you can look up and item and find if there is a reasonable market for it.

I was watching one of those cable house remodeling programs this weekend and cringed when they took a nice antique brass chandelier and painted it chartreuse. Yuck. But someone probably sold it to them and made some money doing it.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 04 Jan 22 - 05:05 PM

Take a toy out of the original packaging and it can lose 90% of its value. wierd
A Mississippi couple have a show my wife watches about their house makeovers. She watches it like I watch old STNG. My handyman skills pale in comparison but I can grout. In fact "I am groot."


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Jan 22 - 09:52 PM

Yes, that's probably the same program, set in Laurel, Mississippi. They're a cute couple who work well together. That town, like Waco, TX, with the Magnolia folks, is getting a house-by-house makeover.

With the new year I'm trying to put some things into use around here. Case in point, a smart bulb that was free with something else I bought but never added to the network. I already have one smart bulb in the kitchen, this one is in the den, but I'm having trouble naming it so that Alexa can find it. I can use my phone to turn them on and off, but Alexa is easier.

In the last week there were too many things sitting out on the kitchen peninsula, resulting in accidentally leaving a couple of containers with food out overnight that had to be tossed into the compost. So I've cleared off the counter. An ongoing task, clearing horizontal surfaces.

Running the dishwasher and the laundry, ok for now, and waiting for Amazon to deliver the foaming root killer that I need to run down the drain every couple of months to prevent another backup like I had last month.

I've seen that image but never actually heard of a "groot." Lots of views on that clip, so apparently I'm in the minority.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Jan 22 - 11:42 AM

Today is our last sunny day before a sequence of cold descends from the upper Midwest, so I'll go scoop the leaves from the street gutter and drop them onto the lawn to mulch in. There will be more leaves, this is the first of two or three such operations during the winter.

Hospitals in regions of Texas are at 100% capacity in their ICU units; the next step is triage. Day five of the New Year and of staying home is involving phone calls to friends for a social boost each day. My radio plays public radio, and right now the administrator (the Tarrant County Court at Law Judge who is elected and who isn't really a judge) of my county is on the radio saying that the governor has taken away the county's ability to act, the governor is calling the shots (and he doesn't believe in closing down or restricting activity for COVID, etc.) so the judge can't close businesses, call a curfew, curtail school activities, etc. "Trust your physicians, quit reading some of this crap on the Internet" he says. 34% of COVID tests in Texas are coming back positive during this Omicron surge. That is HUGE.

I need an excuse to turn on and drive the SUV to keep things running, so I can take some recycling over to the village bins (outdoors, not monitored) and take a drive past the outdoor donation spot for Goodwill (set the bag into the canvas collection rolling hamper thing with no contact). The last time I left it parked for days on end I ended up with wasps nests underneath making it sound odd until the mud dropped off. No mud daubers this time of year, but still, it needs to run about once a week.

Did I mention the set of jersey (t-shirt) sheets that I've decided to donate? I don't use them often, they feel good when first put on the bed, but they're so stretchy that it's almost impossible to get in and out of bed without a struggle and the blankets bunch up too much. These sheets stay in the linen cupboard until I decide to give them another try, and am reminded again why I don't really like them. They've been laundered and to Goodwill they go, with some twine around the set and a note indicating the size. Good luck in their next home.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Mrrzy
Date: 05 Jan 22 - 01:04 PM

Well, day 3 of outage means I am going to deepclean my fridge when the power comes back on!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Jan 22 - 03:12 PM

I had to do that last year. I tried not to open the freezer so at least things were still very cold and could be cooked and used. Is your outage weather related?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 05 Jan 22 - 06:31 PM

The heaviest snow in 7 years.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 06 Jan 22 - 08:45 AM

"Take a toy out of the original packaging and it can lose 90% of its value. wierd"

Seems a shame to me and I don't see the point in a toy you can't play with. I got a couple of steam engines (Mammod traction engine and Wilesco steam roller) a few years back and I read of collectors having them never used but the fun to me is that you can (even if only occasionally in my case) fire them up and see them working.

I got one of my brothers a toy for Christmas btw. Some Fishertechnik - this tractor kit. It's great stuff. Tim, who had a set or two back in the 70s, said it was a great "blast from the past", was reminded of how he enjoyed playing with it and that he had fun making the models this Christmas.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Jan 22 - 12:56 PM

Nostalgia has a price, and it's much higher if the toy you want to buy has never actually been played with! Toy sellers probably make a killing with all of the toys bought and put on a shelf to collect dust. My kids had Beanie Babies and kept the tags and played gently with them; good thing they enjoyed them as toys because the bottom eventually fell out of that artificial collecting marketplace.

When selling family antiques on eBay it's clear that there are target audiences for some things. I had an interesting bulky Bakelite-case hearing aid (with the box and the instructions and the advertising brochure) that was purchased by a physician who probably did audiology for a living. I still have stuff around here that my kids probably need to revisit to see if there is anything they'd like now that they're adults. My home isn't a museum, so I'm glad to look closely at most of this then pass it along to someone's collection.

Breakfast this morning looked more like a lunch or dinner, but it's part of my healthier eating program I started last fall. A Bartlett pear, a medallion of sweet potato, and two homemade rolls with a small patty of sausage each. The colors of the plant part and the protein of the meat part with a bit of a bread. No dairy this time, but most of these have some calcium in the nutrient list. We're into cold weather now so I'll start setting up the little crock pot for my overnight oatmeal (with dates). Then I'll eat that with milk and fruit on the side. Since I reduced the amount of supplements in my diet I was sometimes getting leg cramps when exercising, but by paying more attention to the variety of colors in the foods in my diet that is clearing up.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Jan 22 - 11:58 AM

My sister is a fan of the stretch/exercise program called Essentrics by Canadian ballerina and fitness guru Miranda Esmonde-White. I found it on one of the second string PBS stations this week, various broadcast times, and catching it again last night realize they play the same episode all week. That said, this is the first time in ages I've wished for a DVR to catch these programs and build up a backlog. (I have a virtual DVR on Sling TV, but they don't broadcast any of the PBS channels that I could record.) Each year's set of exercise broadcasts comes in just north of $50, a monthly subscription is about $16 with access to all broadcasts ("cheaper than a gym" says my sister). She doesn't know that the gym I go to is paid for by Silver Sneakers (it's a big full-service gym, so that is a nice benefit). #Frugal

I have lots of options - Silver Sneakers is the big one, offered through my insurance. Hinge Health I've used for months, it's a phone app. For now I'm cobbling together routines that are free (broadcast TV, insurance, retiree benefits, etc.). The gym isn't a safe choice for now, but walking and gardening are a usual routine.

Another freeze overnight, followed by a sparkling bright day. There's a little hyacinth bulb on my kitchen windowsill to perk up the new year mornings (it's only a couple of inches tall so far, no sign of what color the flowers will be.) There are daffodils sprouting in the front yard (also just leaves, no sign of the flowers yet). The daytime temperatures will be in the 60s most of the week. I had a bowl of hot oatmeal from my little 1-quart crockpot - when it cooks overnight it's super creamy and the dates are soft and caramelized (this pot makes enough for four breakfasts that reheat in the microwave). Welcome to winter in Texas.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 07 Jan 22 - 01:05 PM

Crisp and cold in Stratford, with bright sunshine today. Normal winter weather for southwestern Ontario. One of the cardinals resident in my hedge gave me a rousing performance of his slide-whistle impression this morning, so I know all is well in his little world.

Not so much for me. On Tuesday, I had a car accident in which I T-boned a perfectly innocent Ford in broad daylight, the result of failing to stop at a red light. In something like 45 years of driving, I have never done anything like that before; in fact, I’ve never had so much as a speeding ticket.

I hit the Ford on the passenger side and I was in third gear, doing about 45 kph, so the poor driver was flung against the door. She was properly belted in, and suffered only bruising. The passenger side of her car was all stove in. My car is probably a write-off because its air-bags deployed, and I spent several hours in the emergency room being investigated for a lot of things it never occurred to me to worry about. The air-bag hit my hands, so they look as if I had punched somebody’s lights out. Apart from that, I’m physically fine. Mentally, I’m still badly rattled.

The police constable was downright sweet to me, which I did not expect and remain very grateful for. I guess it helped that I accepted responsibility and expressed remorse as soon as she told me what I had done. She gave me a ticket for running the light but did not charge me with anything else. The insurance people are efficient and kind, as well. I have a rental car until they decide whether my poor VW is toast. Doing without a car is not an option as long as I live in this house; the nearest supermarket is four kilometres away.

So life goes on, as it does. I need milk and veg, so I have to crawl out of my hole whether I want to or not.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 Jan 22 - 01:25 PM

Sometimes it's just plain your fault and denial is useless. This end, even if you're bang to rights, insurance companies don't like it if they hear that you've admitted liability on the spot. I got into hot water on one occasion when I'd done just that. It was OK in the end, thankfully. I can't remember now which of my rather numerous accidents it was, but they've all been minor, thank goodness! It's always a nasty thing to happen, so keep yer pecker up and take it easy for a bit. I find that evening access to a corkscrew can help...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Jan 22 - 02:46 PM

I'm so sorry! Your great little VW!

Several years ago I missed taking my turn properly at an intersection that was broken and was blinking red all directions. I was t-boned, rear seat on my side, low speed, but being out of turn, it was on me. I don't think I said anything at the time, just took photos, exchanged information, and a police officer made notes and had the other car towed. No ticket. I got a new (to me) vehicle shortly after learning my unibody SUV was totaled. The difference in how you're treated can be in the insurance company you have - I use a very polite insurance company. They raised my rates for several years, but I am back in good standing with them.

You might want to have those groceries delivered. Every muscle is going to be stiff for a few days, and getting into a car (rental or other) and driving may be difficult at first. You'll revisit the accident - wondering how you missed that light? Don't beat yourself up - accidents happen. There were probably factors involved that you can conclude contributed to missing the light. Was the sun in your eyes? Did you look at the radio for a moment? These are things that can be corrected. I had a passenger and turned my head just long enough to not realize I was following another vehicle when I should have stopped. I try to be all the more careful, and taking the defensive driving course really again helped. Understanding that you did a great job in the past (and will again) also does help.

The worst of 2022 is over. The rest of the year will be much better! I queried Google about actuarial figures on driving accidents and came up with this from Quora:
So if you got your license at age 16, the odds are quite good that you’ll experience some kind of crash by the time you’re 34, at the latest. Over the course of a typical long, driving lifetime, you should have a total of three to four accidents.

Chances are these crashes won’t be deadly. There are about 10 million accidents of all kinds each year, from parking lot scrapes to multi-car pileups, according to the National Safety Council; in 2009, just three of every 1,000 of those accidents involved fatalities.

You've already beat the odds on your first accident, so you'll do fine for the rest of your driving life.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: keberoxu
Date: 07 Jan 22 - 04:33 PM

When I was in the accident that totaled my car years ago,
I was not at all at fault.
It still scares the bejeebers out of you,
AND one hates losing one's car.
I still mourn for that car, I was partial to it.
And they don't make 'em like that model any more either.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 07 Jan 22 - 05:24 PM

I got my licence late as I was a nervous driver & only drove for 3 years, short trips only as driving also tired me. I (slightly) bumped into the car in front in my first week! Repair cost $50 & I was only earning $25 a week.

My father was a mechanic & got my 15 year old car from a friend in the trade ($150), & did repairs for wholesale cost of parts, so when he retired I happily sold it for $100, bought a shopping trolley & have used trolleys & public transport ever since.

Speaking of exercise programs, a friend in her mid 80s was using the stretching exercises of one of Britain's major ballet companies, & is now using Lucy Wyndham-Read's Fitness exercises Yes, Lucy in Martyn's daughter, & my friend used to sing with him in the early 60s when he lived in Australia. videos- 7 to 15 min. home workouts My friend has lost weight, gained muscle tone & altho she (sensibly) still uses a stick to guard against falls, is very happy with the program.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 07 Jan 22 - 06:42 PM

I ran four unavoidable errands today without damage to anything except my wallet, so I guess I’m on the mend.

Every time I approached a traffic signal, I took care to note how visible it was to me behind the wheel. With the sun visor down, they vanish from sight when I’m still anywhere up to 150 metres back from the intersection.

Tuesday was bright and sunny, and I had the sun visor folded down. That’s why I didn’t see that the light had changed.

I guess I had better get a good set of sunglasses and stop using the visor.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 07 Jan 22 - 07:09 PM

Blue blocker (orange beige colored) polorized glasses work well for me . They enhance color, minimize glare and add contrast. Sometimes there is no avoiding sun blindness. 2 days ago someone almost T boned me because they could not see the traffic light due to afternoon sun low in sky this winter season and chose not to stop but they did slow down honking as if they had the right of way on red.
I drive defensively and imagine every tenth driver is intoxicated or challenged.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: JennieG
Date: 07 Jan 22 - 07:09 PM

Oh, Charmion! So long as you are O.K. Pity about your car, but cars can be fixed or replaced. Main thing is that you are all right.

I have only ever had one accident, over 30 years ago. I was all set to make a right hand turn into a side street when a motor cyclist came straight at me from ahead. I slammed on the brakes but we still collided. Fortunately neither of us was hurt, the car had fixable minor damage and so did his bike.

To this day I don't know how it happened. The sun wasn't in my eyes, but there were parked cars and a pedestrian crossing to watch out for.....I just didn't see him.

A decent pair of sunnies would be a Good Thing.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Jan 22 - 09:07 AM

All over Christmas I've had a sore foot, now healing nicely, that's stopped me from going for walks. The weather has conspired too, and, as ever, I've stuffed me face (we're back on healthy food such as veggie pasta dishes and fishy things now). The upshot is, er, several extra pounds around the middle. I'll be taking steps...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 08 Jan 22 - 11:17 AM

Steve, I think most of us feel a bit porky after any festal season, but especially Christmas. And those who live in northern climes, like you and me, have good reason to limit our time outside.

Sorry about your wonky foot — I have one myself. My arthritic foot has a certain daily number of pain-free flexions in it, depending on footwear, so I try to keep my winter excursions limited to hikes (with stick) to the bank or pharmacy. Snow boots are heavier and stiffer than the sneakers I usually wear, so they reduce my range. Besides, every footpath (sidewalk) in town has at least a skim coat of ice, if not jeezly great lumps of the stuff.

One of the pleasures of life in this part of Canada is access to niche products from the Niagara wine region. This year, several vintners are selling “orange” wines — that is, white wines that are fermented on the grape skins. I cracked one last night with my humble supper (chicken cutlet and green beans), and it was … interesting. More body than the same grapes would have yielded in a more traditional vintage, but not enough fruit flavour to balance it quite the way I like for quaffing without food. One glass was fine, but the rest is in the fridge under a vacuum cork for future reference.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: pattyClink
Date: 08 Jan 22 - 11:24 AM

Similar here Steve, a joint bugging me. Yesterday I ventured out and found an aquatic center with a great pool. Got in a great workout, no weight-bearing. But, can't do that every day, so now outside I go to get in a few moves with the weight bar before too many people wake up and are available to stare.   

There is a lot to be said for a 'don't-break-the-chain' approach where you just determine to do Something every day, regardless of how little or how odd it might be. Yes, there should be a 'day of rest' but that can translate down to 'ambling scenic walk' instead of something more focused.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Jan 22 - 11:35 AM

There's nothing worse than opening a bottle to find that you've got disappointing wine. As it's usually my fault for buying it, I end up punishing myself by finishing the bottle and giving Mrs Steve something nice instead. It's the kind of guy I am... ;-)

My foot issue was a split in the skin under the ball of my foot. I try to keep the skin thin but there must be something in the way I walk that keeps making it go thicker and liable to split. Sorry, too much info there! Anyway, I can go for a walk now. Oh, except that we have driving rain and a gale-force wind...

I use two hiking poles now for all except short walks. The ones I bought are Black Diamond brand, pretty expensive but really good (I've had adverse experience of cheapos). No shock-absorbers for me, and I use rubber tips on hard surfaces so it doesn't sound as if Blind Pugh is around... They're great for keeping an upright posture and I don't have to keep stopping on account of my dodgy back.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 08 Jan 22 - 12:29 PM

The Nissan Pathfinder I drive has a huge windshield and I usually have the visor in the down position versus having the seat in a higher position. And I have wrap-around sunglasses that I always wear when I'm driving, even on cloudy days, because of the glare. But that visor - managing to keep sun from coming through the gap by the mirror, etc., does offer up a distraction.

Thank you, JennieG, for saying what we all should have: "So long as you are o.k."

Allergy symptoms are going full-tilt this morning, sneezing, runny nose, itchy eyes. Except for itchy eyes, this could be describing some of the Omicron symptoms. This is why I'm staying home. (I was at the grocery store briefly on the 5th; I made a note now for my own "contact tracing." I went in because the parking lot was almost empty and I was out after about 10 minutes. In this day and age, that is living dangerously.)

Before Xmas I bought a large bag (8 pounds) of navel oranges; I've given oranges away, over Xmas family was here and we ate a few, and today when I ate yet another I see I have three more to go. This has seemed like an almost bottomless bag of oranges. It serves as a reminder to me that I'm trying to eat fruit and vegetables in lots of colors. The Swiss chard in the fridge is the variety with a red stem; there are asparagus spears and a yellow bent-neck squash along with broccoli and cauliflower. Beets. So much of what I eat is in the cruciferous or tobacco families so I'm making a point of getting other plant families.

Yesterday I used up some tag ends of things (three varieties of cheese, diced ham, some sliced hard salami) in a batch of macaroni and cheese. The pasta was a rice-based gluten free one that I've had around for a while (it keeps). I added turmeric to give it a bright yellow color and a grind of black pepper and some thyme to give it a nice herbal bite and it was amazing. I haven't tried to lose weight in a while, but I'm enjoying managing to eat healthier.

Finally, yesterday I admitted defeat on the 750-piece holiday puzzle I had set up in mid-December. The dog demolished the corner I had assembled and I could never get up the interest to work on it much. I had a few edges and a couple of larger more charismatic features put together, but I wasn't going to finish this till Michaelmas at this rate. Before I set out another puzzle I need to set up some kind of barrier that will cover the puzzle when I'm not working on it, to keep that pup from destroying another one. For the time being I had propped things around the edges so I could see if it was disturbed, but the goal is to prevent her having access at all.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 08 Jan 22 - 12:43 PM

There are more speeding accidents on these pandemic roads, watch out.
Also there is more drinking.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 08 Jan 22 - 01:17 PM

Jigsaws... I got some thick A3 card before Christmas and (the one he's doing now aside as that is a new one I got him for Christmas) I'm asking dad to do his 250 piece Wentworth jigsaws on this stuff. The idea is that I can stack any (and hope no one clumsy knocks them) that have missing pieces in their nearly completed states and hope to finish them if the missing bits turn up.

One bit of good news is that the missing piece from the church one I had custom made has turned up. I've also been able to box a couple of others up as checked and complete.

Other than that, so far we have. One jigsaw with a missing piece, 3 pieces waiting to find the jigsaw(s) they belong to and one box and its bag without any pieces. The last of these might be interesting if dad has put the pieces for two puzzles in another one of the bags.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Jan 22 - 11:10 AM

I'm going to poke around to see if I have a sheet of that clear acrylic sheeting that I used to put on the wooden table tops to prevent spills on the wood (sometimes I put a table cloth over it, sometimes I put it over the table cloth). Chances are I have a piece I can trim to fit this table, and then clamp it down on the sides, and remove one side and roll it back when I want to work the puzzle. I think I might simply use a couple of those extra-large binder clips for this. The mid-century table top I use for puzzles has a beveled edge, no trim to make the edge too thick for this.

Jon, I am curious if those puzzles were commingled by your father. The only way to sort them is to work them side by side to sort the pieces. A lot more complicated than a game of double solitaire, etc.

By default, January ends up being a "no spend" month—as the bills from the holidays come in the resolve to do better is typically at the top of my To Do list. I see that UPS stocks are listed on the NY Stock Exchange, and I certainly contributed to this year's profits. Sigh.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 09 Jan 22 - 05:45 PM

Well, the « orange » wine turned iut to need aeration, like a red. I guzzled the rest today, and it was just fine.

And my phone has reverted to French. Whatever.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: JennieG
Date: 09 Jan 22 - 06:43 PM

Peu importe.......


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 09 Jan 22 - 07:38 PM

I've often found that the rocket-fuel wine, earlier regarded as unpalatable, isn't half bad...as long as you've had a glass or three of the good stuff first...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Jan 22 - 09:42 PM

Lately I've run a small experiment to see if there are acceptable wines that come with the Stelvin screw cap, and there are. I've found a couple of under $10 merlot, pinot noir, and others that are actual varieties, not just "California red" and other low-end blends. Costco has several. I've kept up the varied colors of vegetables and fruits, and it helps reduce the snacking; by the time I've finished a fruit and a vegetable with the main, there is less room for dessert. Sometimes a glass of wine with the meal is the dessert.

Another quiet week ahead as Omicron roars through the state. I have a list of things that need doing, and keeping track of what is the day of the week it is part of that list. On the 17th I'll look at the COVID-19 numbers and decide if it is prudent to try going out in a limited way.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 10 Jan 22 - 04:09 AM

speaking of co-mingled jigsaw puzzles, I once found 2 sticky-taped boxes of the same vintage 500 piece puzzle in a charity shop. 1 box was heavy, the other very light, indicating they just might be co-mingled, so I bought them both.

One contained all the edge pieces, good thing I didn't just buy one box, sigh, so I pulled out every piece & put them on my plywood & perspex boards, & made one, then the other. All pieces were present & the 2 puzzles were re-sealed & went to different charity shops.

sandra


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 Jan 22 - 05:22 AM

Well I guess I've been a wine drinker for a half-century. Two or three decades ago, cork taint was a massive issue, and I lost count of the number of times I returned corked bottles for a refund. For a while, fake corks made of a dense plastic were all the rage (they still exist). I hate them for several reasons, not least because they can be leaky and allow air to get in and spoil the wine, and because they are hard to re-insert in the half-full bottle. Screw caps are very popular here and are no longer seen as toppings for inferior wine. Real corks are still used by traditional wineries, and good quality control has meant that cork taint is quite rare these days. The wine cork industry in southern Europe is ancient and traditional and I'd hate to see it disappear. The metal collar below the screw cap (as well as the screw cap itself) is environmentally incredibly unfriendly unfortunately. I love using a corkscrew but the only type I'll countenance is the waiter's friend, which, if you avoid poor-quality ones, never fails to get the cork out cleanly and will last a lifetime.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 10 Jan 22 - 10:23 AM

What do you have against other kinds of corkscrew, Steve?

I use a waiter’s friend myself, but I can see the day coming when my hands are too rickety for it. So I’m not doctrinaire.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 Jan 22 - 11:44 AM

Failure rate, Charmion.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 10 Jan 22 - 11:51 AM

Do you mean failure to extract the cork cleanly, or material failure in the corkscrew itself?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Jan 22 - 12:21 PM

I prefer a Cork puller, it avoids the cork bits that the corkscrew sometimes causes. On very rare occasions if I meet a cork that won't let the puller slide into place for removal I resort to the winged corkscrew.

I'd never heard of a cork puller before I brought home a bunch of kitchen gadgets from my dad's house after clearing out his estate. I have over the years figured out what most of them were for. This one was not difficult.

I missed the trash pickup this morning, but when I looked up the street realized that they hadn't run past the houses up the rest of my street (they turned at the corner opposite my house and went up the hill instead of continuing on my street. I live at a "T" intersection.) So I carried my small bag of trash next door and called that neighbor (moved in a few months ago) and explained that I'd left my trash at his curb, so don't be alarmed if they notice an extra bag. In our little corner of the village we have been known to spread out trash among several houses when someone has a lot to go out but it isn't our month for bulky waste pickup. Everyone instead gets a little more than usual. We're a cooperative little ant hill here. :)

Looking back at the earliest posts in this thread I see that Keberoxu was on a plane over the holidays. I hope that has panned out well and no ill effects resulted from such close proximity to others. Did you take any rapid or PCR tests after?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: keberoxu
Date: 10 Jan 22 - 12:30 PM

How thoughtful of you, Stilly, to ask after my well-being. Thank you so much.

Yes, I got on that airplane two weeks ago today.
The next morning, at that other location,
I was in the airport trying to get onto an airplane back.
So it was all over on Tuesday December 28 when I returned.

As I am in congregate housing now, with COVID-19 testing every week,
I have since been tested at least three times,
and the results are always negative.

Yes, being crammed in a series of tin cans with wings on them
with a bunch of other people ... is anxiety-provoking.
Everybody, I mean everybody, had face-masks on.
And the airplane stewardess instructions to passengers now include
the suggestion that when drinks or snacks are served in-flight,
that each passenger, in between sips/swallows or bites/chews,
should slap that facemask back over their nose and mouth.
No more specific instruction than that,
and you can still see the point of it --
it's easy, when drinking or eating,
to just leave the facemask off even if
you are done swallowing/chewing, and just sit there breathing.
With everybody packed in next to you.

Well, I can't speak for the other passengers, all of whom were strangers,
but I seem to have got through the errand I was running, and the traveling,
none the worse for wear.

Being on the plane, all that said, isn't so bad.
Being in the airport terminal is far far worse,
because the airlines are woefully understaffed.
And I was traveling right after Christmas so you know that
there were far too many passengers all traveling at once ...
with their small children AND their pet dogs ...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 10 Jan 22 - 12:49 PM

You're braver than I am, Keb. I don't know what it would take to get me on a plane these days, but it would probably involve shackles.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 Jan 22 - 01:16 PM

The worry about planes has caused us to shelve travel plans (to Europe anyway) for now.

I've never heard of those cork pullers! The winged corkscrews are my biggest culprits for wrecking corks. I bought two good-quality waiter's friends many years ago after a cheaper one broke, thinking that a spare was a wise-virgin purchase, but up to now it's still lashed to its packaging.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Jan 22 - 03:30 PM

I had no idea those cork pullers are so expensive! I had three, one broke after years of use, and I can't remember who I gave the other one to. Probably family or a very close friend.

I haven't been to the greenhouse in a few days and my two pots of bat-faced cuphea dried up. I'll continue to water because I don't know if they died of dry or cold (the heater should be working back there). It may come back from the roots if they're ok.

This time of year I drink more tea - my limit on black tea is two "normal" sized cups (~ 10 oz) in the morning, but I had a cup of midday green tea, and from now on it's decaff or herbal so I can get to sleep at night. I need to remember to drink more water also; I sometimes get leg cramps when I do my exercises if I don't hydrate well enough during the day.

It looks like a nice week coming up, so some outdoor chores may be completed. Thank goodness for a bright sunny day - it helps the mood considerably.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Jan 22 - 11:32 AM

Yesterday I dug around the depths of the kitchen cabinet where I keep various table cloths, party serving trays, and a couple of folded clear acrylic sheets that I put over the table tops to protect the wood from spills. Essential when the kids were small, now optional. I was going to sacrifice a table cover to the cause of trimming down to cover the top of my puzzle table in the sunroom but I found an L-shaped large scrap piece that I was able to trim and run under the sewing machine (the walking foot was perfect for this because this stuff is kind of sticky to work with) and cobble together a top. Frankenstein's clear quilted table cover.

I wanted to use the large black spring binder clips to hold it in place and had one of them from here in my office. I poked around the kitchen junk drawer and den library table drawer searching for more. This morning I remembered the drawer in the antique secretary/bookshelf in my bedroom and found three more. Perfect! They slide over the edge of the table and hold the plastic in place; I'll only need to remove them on one side and lift the cover. I may decide to use some tissue paper between the puzzle and the cover if pieces try to stick to it.

All of this because the puppy figured out that the puzzle pieces are apparently edible and stands on her back feet to graze the pieces at the edge of the table. I caught her one time. That first puzzle was used and a few pieces kind of crusty so I think they smelled like food, and that's all it took. She tasted the next puzzle (my holiday one) and demolished a completed portion (one of the few larger charismatic parts of the puzzle to work from). Now she's blocked from access to that tabletop, but I can see the puzzle through the acrylic.

These puzzles have become a wonderful mental exercise; studying each piece, learning the image used for the puzzle, detecting shifts in color to put together large swaths that appear to be the same color (sky and water and forests, in particular). I place a few pieces at a time then return to whatever else I was working on. I've missed doing the puzzles for a few weeks because I knew pieces were missing so was bound to be disappointed if I finished it. This last one (holiday) was an inexpensive used one, but I also realized that the artist cheated in the perspective - the people and buildings in the distance weren't as small as they should have been, making it quite difficult to sort pieces. All of this added up to a puzzle that was trashed and I'm starting fresh today with a new sealed puzzle (that I got on deep discount at Thursday Morning, a discount store with stuff from high end department stores.) The delay in tossing the holiday puzzle and starting a fresh one represents the "invention" period, during which I was mulling the possible answers to the problem.

/jigsaw puzzle rant off/


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 11 Jan 22 - 04:44 PM

Dupont:

A quick post as I lose the last of the sunlight in my new sitting space in front of the Double South windows. Posts on Clayart the last few days encouraged me to go in the wanna-be studio/was gonna be bathroom and look at what needed to be done to make it more enticing.

I told R what I wanted to go in the front hall but --- in one ear... This am I asked for help to get a beautiful antique daybed from the "studio" into the second floor hall. Now comfy with cushions! Love it! Of course the ugly, uncomfortable antique stuff he had put there... 2 chairs and a love seat need homes... One in the back corner and the love seat... half blocking the door to a room. BUT I have a lovely spot. AND more room in the "studio".

When we were first moving here, I bought a sofa I just love for this space but it ended up in the LR - until the Victorian one gets moved here. I got tired of waiting. What will we do with the day bed later? For now, I really do not care. This has cheered me up! And my Georgia O'Keefe print on the wall next to me!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Jan 22 - 08:32 PM

That room sounds lovely, Dorothy! I have two rooms here that I reworked during the first year of the pandemic (three actually - I swapped contents between the sun room and the front room, and the sewing studio was organized.) Every time I walk into the sewing studio it's just so inviting and is very bright in the afternoon.

This afternoon I made the holiday batch of arroz con gandules for my ex (if you look it up you'll see this listed as the "national dish of Puerto Rico"). It came out pretty good; this time I used smoked chicken because he didn't want ham or bacon (though fat back or bacon are traditional sources of oil and flavor). I smoked the chicken breasts last month and froze several to use for seasoning like this. The rice was made today because before now he had too much stuff in his fridge and freezer. Consumable gifts don't need to be decluttered later.

It is sounding more like I'm going to have to take the entire month of January away from my volunteer work; Omicron is pushing the numbers so high that the graphs have an almost straight line up. Today I went into the house at my ex's because both of us have been away from people for several days and both recently tested with negative results. There are so few instances like that. I was wearing a mask when I handed a gift over to my next door neighbor this afternoon (on her porch)—she's the one who had COVID last month, and the reason I was recently tested. She looked like she's feeling much better. That's good. Now I hope she gets the vaccine when enough time from the illness has passed. I will encourage her to do so.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 11 Jan 22 - 10:04 PM

I just learned that the pater familias across the street, aged 44 with two little kids, died of COVID just before Christmas. Not vaccinated, none of his family vaccinated.

Bloody hell.

I’m getting my booster shot on Saturday. Can’t wait.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Jan 22 - 12:35 AM

There are way too many of those stories around. A local GOP politician who made a big deal of protesting the vaccines died of COVID on Monday. The story went something like "The local GOP office reported her death. Several of her Facebook posts were removed. Spokeswoman says this is 'no time to fight about vaccines.'" Wrong characterization - not "fight." Teach. This is exactly the time to make the point that she could have saved her own life and her friends and family that grief.

Meanwhile, today it was reported that some immunocompromised people will be able to get a fourth shot soon. Starting later this week, some at-risk Americans become eligible for a 4th shot.
Some people are born with absent or faulty immune systems, and in others, treatments for some diseases like cancer diminish the potency of immune defenses. The C.D.C. estimates there are about seven million immunocompromised individuals in the country.

The last time something like this (a booster) was suggested, it didn't take long before we were all getting them. Meanwhile, much of the world still hasn't had the access to any vaccines. (There was another vaccine developed, this one by Texas researchers using older vaccine forms, that they will give away. A plant in India is making it now. A new coronavirus vaccine heading to India was developed by a small team in Texas. It expects nothing in return. Good for them. We need more selfless acts, fewer corporations making billions while a big chunk of the population ignores common sense.

Time to take a day or two off from the news.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 12 Jan 22 - 06:04 AM

Just briefly to follow that (wrong thread, I know...). One facet of a strategy to persuade the vaccine-hesitant (to call them by a too-kind name) would be to give far more publicity to the fact that it's the unvaccinated who now constitute not only the lion's share of seriously ill people, but who are also the people clogging up intensive care units in hospitals, to the detriment of patients who need urgent care through far less fault of their own. Sorry, a bit heavy...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 12 Jan 22 - 09:52 AM

No, Steve, not too heavy. This topic has been well-chewed on this thread since the first vaccines were announced.

In the news this morning, from Québec City, Premier Legault has announced his intention to introduce a health tax to be levied from the unvaccinated to help off-set the pressure they are putting on the health-care system in particular and society in general. The pundits are saying that it will hurt more than it helps, and I rather agree; the unvaxxed will only wallow more deeply in their grievances while the revenue can’t undo the decades of under-funding that underlie the capacity problems that most bedevil hospitals and their staff.

Today I must take the Chevy cracker-box on the highway for the first time to practise for tomorrow’s unavoidable trip to the allergist in Kichener. Its lack of snow tires (not required by law and therefore not provided by the rental agency) puts a shiver in my bones; it’s a tiny car, and a sideways skid in the wrong place at the wrong time could be Really Bad.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion's brother Andrew
Date: 12 Jan 22 - 10:42 AM

Oh, Charmion, what a damned fool! It will stand as an unfortunate example of how our ill-advised decisions can have catastrophic effects on others who have no agency.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Jan 22 - 01:16 PM

There was a story on Marketplace (public radio) yesterday that doesn't seem to be linked from their homepage yet. I'll share instead this one from last month, a similar story: Car dealerships short on cars, going big on prices

My second coherent thought after reading Charmion's account of totalling her relatively new car was "where will the next car come from?" They're hard to find and getting so expensive. There are strategies, and they discussed it on the program (hence trying to find the link) - such as going way out of town to smaller communities where there perhaps isn't as much turnover in the car dealerships.

I have a few disposable surgical masks here at the house, and will be double-masking if I have to go out. I've ordered more (nothing comes "tomorrow" from Amazon any more, Saturday is as soon as they can manage, but I'm ok until then.) I was thinking about heading over to a favorite grocery store during their quietest hours, but even that is too much right now. Any store's checkout counter is likely to be a vector for Omicron. And I think my ex and I are back to shopping for each other, taking turns so we both aren't exposed as often. At this point his is the only house I feel comfortable walking into because I know he hasn't been out anywhere for days. (Yesterday I delivered the delayed holiday meal of his favorite Puerto Rican arroz con gandules dish.)

The difference between the extreme risk of Omicron versus original COVID almost two years ago is that most of us have paid attention and learned a lot and know which risks are worth taking and how to mitigate those risks. It sounds like one reason prices are inflated now is that a lot of people stuck at home are shopping to relieve their boredom. Instead of drilling down and working on existing projects, they're bringing in new devices to entertain. I'm trying to do the opposite and making my list (I've done it before) of projects here at the house that I can do without having to go out for parts (or very little shopping involved.) As of yesterday, the top of my list is organizing the garage; last night when I drove the SUV I admired how good the corner of the garage looked since I swept it up last week. That pile of swept debris needs adding to and then picking up. I can drive in and out easily, but the sides need organization and I get such a boost from looking at it when everything is easy to find. Then I can work on the new gate that goes beside the garage because I have all of those parts also.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 12 Jan 22 - 07:20 PM

Dupont:

No sun today and still COLD! Up to minus 9C right now. I have not cleared the back deck nor brought in more wood as I do not want to let cold air in! In fact, I seem to be in one of my do nothing phases - nothing but internet, that is. Made cauliflower cheddar soup yesterday and burned it! But not too badly; it is still good.

Went for groceries on Monday and had to have help x2. The yogurt was on the top shelf - way back there! - so I watched for someone taller to fetch it down for me - all 3 large ones while we were at it; it was on sale. Looking for the milk I wanted, I must have looked at sea, a youngish woman asked if I needed help; She shouted at the person on the other side of the cooler (in French) and I managed to get 2% but also found a glass bottle!! of unhomogenized 3.8% from a farm in Riviere du Loup and a one qt of 3%. Then she asked, what else? Eggs! I had not found the brown eggs - but she did! Boy, did I ever feel OLD! She was so kind!

I checked the farm on the internet today and found it really interesting; will look for their milk again. Hope I can take the bottle back!

Cleared out the "studio" some more but have not gotten down to work yet. I do believe the weather affects me even though I am in a wam house; I know the atmospheric pressure does and today was another heavy, snowing lightly day.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Jan 22 - 10:18 PM

I have no idea what time the trash guys will come past in the morning, but I'm ready! Bags are at the curb in the can (to keep coyotes and raccoons out of it). Twice in one week!

My garage got a good sweep out and there are a couple of bags (including the torn up foam rubber from a dog bed that Cookie demolished and spread around). I moved a few large things to get the worst of it. Tomorrow I'll rearrange some of those large objects. I wore a mask for this work since there are a lot of mouse droppings (we don't have hantavirus here, but I keep that in mind with this work). If I clear up the area enough I can leave the stall gate open and let the dogs chase mice overnight. That would keep them entertained. My old Catahoula Poppy used to chase mice in there regularly, knocking over things in the process.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 13 Jan 22 - 05:26 PM

Dupont:
I know I am in bad shape when I cannot tell glass from plastic. The nice farm milk is in a plastic bottle so I do not have to think about taking it back! Just try to find more uses for it!

Today, I woke up alive for a change. Made humus,applesauce, cooked more black beans - have found they go well with beets! Also potatoes and cauliflower to have on hand. Cleared a couple things from frig to make room for new.

Kept trying to get on internet and, finally, decided to phone provider which, wisely, offered a nice message telling us there is a problem; I could stop thinking about it and tried to use apple TV which must also be internet dependent. OK. Cleared back deck, brought in as much wood as space and have found it already dry enough to use!! Nice fire in stove. Feels good on a grey day at -9C again. Also unearthed the bin of smaller wood and made it accessible but no room in house for it yet.

Did not get to the pottery yet; probably not today but hopeful for tomorrow. Feel good about feeling good and getting some things done without feeling I was dragging my tail behind me.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Jan 22 - 10:07 PM

There is more progress in the garage with the left side now cleared (after sweeping out the center yesterday). Flattened boxes went to the village recycle bins, a portable table that I've never managed to set up properly has gone to Goodwill (it was given by a friend who probably had the same problem). The busiest area is at the back by the work bench, so I'll leave that for last. Some stuff moved out to the greenhouse, and some stuff was put into use. For example, I had two unused metal hose caddies collecting dust that have now been attached to the back side of the new fence that faces the street. This 10' stretch of fence hides trash cans and yard equipment, and now it will hold some of the short segments of hose that I rely on for my garden irrigation each year.

Another set of friends have been knocked off their feet by COVID. They were running medical-type errands today, looking for an xray for her injured ankle; her ankle will be ok, but when he asked if they had a COVID test (because he needs it before his medical appointment tomorrow) bad news - he came up positive. They are both vaccinated and boosted but with other health issues, and have headed home to quarantine and hope to dodge this bullet.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Jan 22 - 02:22 PM

A sewing project has arisen: one of the friends mentioned in the last post has to do in-person teaching in his community college classroom, so has asked if I can make a mask that includes a clear panel in the center of it so students can see his mouth moving when he talks. There are students whose first language is not English and they need all the help they can get to understand the lecture. This will be an interesting challenge and I'll take it up this weekend.

Today is our last warm day before a string of very cold days (we're at the bottom edge of what the Weather Channel has dubbed Winter Storm "Izzy.") So I'll finish some of the outdoors work today and start on the mask tomorrow.

Yesterday I drove four miles in a perfect square as I did my cardboard/Goodwill run. I'll double that distance today when, way after busy hours, I head over to the 24-hour grocery for some fresh produce and dairy for myself and my ex. Double-masked. He'll pick up groceries here tomorrow when he returns a pot that I delivered his xmas present in (mentioned earlier).

Two boxes of rapid tests finally arrived. I read that insurance companies aren't going to be set for customers to just ring up tests at the pharmacy and have it covered by tomorrow (Biden's date for doing this. Insurance companies usually deal with medical codes, not barcodes). I don't know if I'll bother to try to get reimbursed, but the article said to keep both the receipts and the boxes in case they are required for reimbursement.

According to recent research the BinaxNOW rapid test from Abbott Laboratories is the most effective at catching Omicron variant, but as soon as that was posted they probably sold out everywhere. Here is a helpful article from the New York Times: Which Covid Test Should I Get? When Should I Test? What If I Can’t Find One? Answers About Testing and Omicron
Facing long lines and shortages of home test kits during the latest surge, people are searching for answers about Covid tests.

My jigsaw puzzle cover is working as I hoped. The new puzzle is 500 pieces and seems easy except that all of the pieces are exactly the same shape so you can mistakenly pair the wrong pieces. So that's why the puzzles with individually shaped pieces make a big deal about it on the box. I've had those so far and didn't realize this other sort was available. The puzzle cover is made of previously unused acrylic and there is a several inch wide extra flap on it; I'll cut that off and use it for the masks mentioned above. I just hadn't gotten around to trimming it yet, but I have a need for it now.

Stay safe, everyone! Omicron seems to be roaring through communities for the next couple of weeks.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Jan 22 - 11:54 PM

The double mask setup was ok, not uncomfortable, but it certainly was a lot of layers. Three in the cloth mask, three in the surgical mask. The cloth mask keeps the surgical one right up against your face.

Wind gusts overnight and through tomorrow; I picked up a couple of things I should have brought in and I think a couple of light trash bags have left the yard. I'll look in the morning.

The oddest thing at the grocery store - they are completely out of onions. Not a one in sight. It seems this is happening around town in other grocery stores as well. I need a couple more, I'll have to see if I can do curbside pickup at one of the grocery stores that has them still.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 15 Jan 22 - 07:59 AM

Today I get my booster shot.

It’s almost Ottawa cold, however, which means lined jeans and the down-filled coat as well as wool socks and a fleece sweater. Peeling off three layers of bulky clothing in the cramped space of the clinic without losing mitts, muffler and hat will be the social challenge of the weekend.

The car saga continues to unfold. Indeed, the choice of replacement vehicles has been so drastically restricted by supply problems that I consider myself very lucky to have found a gently used 2021 VW Golf GTI that will cost a mere Cdn$10,000 more than the plain-Jane Golf that died in the collision. I have top-of-the-line insurance with depreciation protection, too, so the settlement will be generous. I have been saving for years, so I can pay the difference without going into debt.

Oh yeah, I also need a new set of snow tires, and of course the GTI won’t take the alloy rims I have in storage with the Golf’s three-season radials. That means buying a very expensive second set of GTI alloy rims. Each new expense feels like another air-bag going off in my face.

On the fitness front, gyms are still closed in Ontario. I hiked downtown to the post office yesterday despite the deep cold and the ice underfoot, and it definitely felt good to stretch my legs for a change. The now-obligatory mask protects the face from the biting wind, too.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 15 Jan 22 - 11:41 AM

Not a single piece of fresh chicken in the stores.
No cat food either.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Jan 22 - 12:22 PM

I'll trade you a Winco bag of two 5 lb chickens for a 5 lb bag of onions. I think next time I get onions I'll dice and freeze some of them. I've done that in the past as a convenience move (scoop out how much I need to add to the skillet while cooking), and they'll keep better than fresh sitting on the counter. They don't seem to store for as long as they used to. (It occurs to me that the small cash-and-carry restaurant supply store a few blocks from here might have onions.)

Charmion, you probably wouldn't salvage the tires off of the totaled car to put on the new one, but if you have any spare lightly-used tires set aside maybe you can sell to defray the cost of the next car's tires. Or negotiate a trade with the tire supplier? I pulled up reviews of the car you name on Car and Driver, and it sounds like the replacement you're getting will be fun to drive. "It's one of the best in the business and makes every drive an engaging experience." You could do a lot worse! I'd love to drive a manual transmission vehicle again, and it sounds like VW is the only company that makes one that's nice to drive. Standards are an afterthought with other manufacturers and they haven't worked to improve the shifting experience.

I didn't have as many layers to go through for my COVID vaccines early last year, but I was aware that January and February shots in a large public room (a gymnasium) meant having to dress so it was modest and so the person with the needle didn't need to wait for me to go through too many layers. A short sleeved t-shirt under the long sleeved sweater and jacket accomplished that. The booster was in warm weather in a grocery store pharmacy when the short-sleeved t-shirt was standard apparel.

The wind is gusting today, rattling things around the outside of the house. A good day to work on indoors projects.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 15 Jan 22 - 01:29 PM

Dupont:

Exciting news: The old K sink is coming out! It may be a reaction to a death in the "family" - my gardening friend of 60 years (95) died peacefully in her sleep yesterday morning. Her eldest son phoned me and we chatted briefly about the importance of this relationship in his mother's and my lives. I have, of course, known him for most of his life. After talking with him, I was fragile and phoned R and asked that he come home before 10 pm! He came home about 7 and we had a light supper and watched TV. With me reeling with dry sobs over this huge hole in my life; so many memories.

In trying to get the computer to attach to the TV, I messed up big time. In the midst of watching Canadian Dragon's Den on Gem,. it suddenly switched to US programming - I guess. Nothing we did remedied the situation. We could still watch ordinary TV. I will phone HELP when I feel better.

THEN, today, I got "Freshy" when opening a new tab; I managed to find help to get rid of that. YAY for me! I also got rid of that ISSU thing!! Later will see if anything helped Gem.

The kitchen sink: R finally decided to look seriously at it this am after I said I would settle for the new faucet - the old one has been leaking into a bowl - a very good bowl! - and does not work well. SO, the sink seemed irreversibly attached to the counter and the counter desperately attached to the cabinets... He started cutting the sink with a hacksaw - two small cuts at the rim about an inch apart. Nothing seemed to slide between sink and counter...

While his back was turned, I took hammer and an old kitchen knife and ... voila! I bent the small piece back and he could see the glue... OH! OK. He, now, seemed to see a way forward. I am hiding out in the TV room while he goes at it. HOPE! My dear friend always said the best thing we can give someone is hope...

Sunny day and -24C! A good day to sit in my new space listening to music, as I did yesterday as I began processing this big change. Her son told me: Someone wondered out loud if she was still lucid. "I AM VERY LUCID!" and that was the last word(s)! This grief is going to take a while. Yes, her being is within me and I can still "talk with her" but it ain't the same!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Jan 22 - 02:13 PM

Awww, Dorothy. I'm so sorry!

The last time I saw one of my oldest friends I was in 2013, driving my son around the little town where I had worked for several years. We hadn't spoken in a couple of years when I stopped by her house unannounced, where her grown grandson was now living with her. She was glad to see me, I introduced my now-grown son, and then she asked how the kids are. All faces in the room froze with realization. I miss all of our long conversations from over the years and haven't heard back from her son to know if she is even living now. You're very lucky to have had "lucid" right up to the end! And that new sink will always remind you of her. Instead of Shirley Valentine talking to "Wall," you can talk to "Sink." {{Hugs}}


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Jan 22 - 11:08 PM

The trifecta of Saturday cleaning accomplished: I ran the washer, the dryer, and the dishwasher in sequence (they add a nice heartbeat hum to an otherwise very quiet house). The sheets are changed. In the kitchen the fridge has been cleaned and a few things have been cooked for meals this week.

I went shopping yesterday and discovered the large grocery store was completely out of onions. The stocking clerk said they haven't been able to get any for three weeks, and he has heard that other stores are having similar order shortages. I mulled this: was I going to try another grocery store? Last night's trip was calculated to find an empty 24-hour store (it was). I don't want to go indoors around people much with Omicron in the air. Get curbside pickup and hope someone else could find a good bag of onions? And would they do curbside for a single item? Then it dawned on me that the restaurant supply cash-and-carry little hole-in-the-wall store near me has a few produce offerings. I headed over, there was no one else in there, and found and brought home six large onions. I'll be dicing a couple of them to freeze and bag (I do this anyway when I have extras). I'll be cooking with a couple. A couple are spare and hopefully onions will again appear in the stores by the time I need more.

In another pandemic-avoidance move (after reading up on disposable masks) two boxes of surgical facemasks arrived today (thanks, Amazon!) For the last two years I've worn the homemade cloth masks; the ones I've made since summer of 2020 are the three-layer 3-D style that are still quite safe. The older more fitted ones are t-shirt jersey or other lighter fabric and are only two layers: those need to be set aside. And even with the 3-D masks, it makes sense now to double mask. That's why I have all of these disposable surgical ones. I've tested it a couple of times now, it is ok. The cloth mask keeps the surgical mask underneath right against your face so you really do get a good filter. Those I sent to the NE and other contingents of Mudcatters (I've lost track, I sent out a lot of these) just double up and you'll be fine.

In cold weather it's layers time so I got out my favorite sweatshirt (an oversized green one that says "Aun Aprendo: I'm still learning.") It's really old, so I spent time zigzag stitching on patches and tacking things back together. It's still pretty ratty, but I should be able to wear it for one more winter.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 16 Jan 22 - 08:47 AM

I’m still sorry I scrapped a camo-pattern sweatshirt that said “You can’t see me”.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 16 Jan 22 - 09:20 AM

Dupont:

Now there is no sink at all!! And the stores that sell parts are closed today! There is the bathtub... Trying to think of things to cook that require little mess. Need a wash basin... Waiting for the next exciting episode! I did get to see how wonderful the Stainless steel sink will look!!!

R then went off to supper at his cousin's wearing good clothes. I did a laundry, including the was-once-red Jacket; it is sort of red now.

minus 24C and beautiful sun, clear sky - which is why it is so cold- no cloud cover to keep the heat down here! I need to bring in more wood- hate to open the door!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 16 Jan 22 - 09:48 AM

Dupont:

And I phoned Applehelp last night and a wonderful woman guided me out of the AppleTV mess. I am still not clear about how it happened but it is fine now AND she told me how to connect computer to TV for that larger screen! I wrote it down. So I can console myself with programs I like rather than sports and other stuff of no interest to me. And I did not have to wait overly long for help, and had the choice of silence rather than someone else's choice of Music.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 16 Jan 22 - 10:44 AM

Not all here this am: meant to share this possibly helpful info:
Can you clean N95 masks?

A timely study, conducted by Dr. Pascal Juang and published in April of 2020, determined the following about mask cleaning:

Rotate between three to four masks, wearing one per day and then letting it rest for three to four days.
N95 masks can be heated to 70 C (158 F) for 60 minutes.
Boiling N95 masks for five minutes
Steam cleaning N95 masks at 125 C (257 F) for five minutes


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Jan 22 - 02:06 PM

Another friend down with COVID, the most vulnerable person I know, she's 87 and has COPD. She has been vaccinated and boosted.

Dorothy, I remember reading articles about reusing the N95 masks, and hospitals ran them through autoclaves. I wonder if something like an air convection oven would work? They might blow around, but would get warm enough long enough. Or put silverware in with them through the loops to hold them in place on the bottom rack. Mine is a large glass bowl with the heating element and fan on top, and the temperature can be pretty precise (and I could use an oven thermometer in the bowl.)

The water of COVID is circling the drain, picking up everyone. We need to stop the magical thinking that we won't catch it and just stay home away from people. My friend, mentioned above, lives with her son. Who is on his way to the airport tomorrow after today visiting with all of his siblings in this DFW area (he lives 4 hours drive west of here). My friend tested positive this morning (after testing negative yesterday and thinking she just has allergies). The son plans to get on a flight from DFW to Hawaii tomorrow - those plans need to abruptly change, for everyone's sake.

I texted the kids to give the friend a call to "cheer her up." Code for "say goodbye." I hope for the best and fear the worst.

Meanwhile, the fellow I do contract work for was commenting on his allergies on his gardening radio show today. I work from home, never come into contact, but the business is basically a three or four person operation. [slaps forehead]


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Thompson
Date: 17 Jan 22 - 04:33 AM

I see warnings online *not* to use a convection oven for this (what is a convection oven?)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Thompson
Date: 17 Jan 22 - 04:43 AM

Oh, a fan oven. OK.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 17 Jan 22 - 09:12 AM

It’s snowing to beat the band all across Ontario today and I must go out — no veg or fruit in the house, and a date with the physiotherapist. I don’t look forward to surfing the Chevy cracker-box over the drifts.

I’m very gradually getting thinner. Yesterday, I noticed that my lined jeans are flapping around my legs and the waistband is all bunched up under my belt. I think I have another pair a size smaller …

Last night’s supper was mostly cauliflower, with garlic butter and freshly ground black pepper. Delicious!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Jan 22 - 12:39 PM

Charmion, shifting into a smaller pair of jeans is a nice bit of progress in an a world otherwise stuck in place. I, on the other hand, ripped out the seat of a really really old pair of thin PJ pants and went against my "no-spend" policy this month and ordered a replacement flannel pair. Larger (alas).

I've researched the sites for monoclonal antibody infusions and have forwarded the information to my friend with COVID and to the most responsible of her grown children. I just heard that her son got on that plane to Hawaii. I am so disappointed in him right now. I have contacted my doctor's office and asked for Rx refills for now and go in for annual bloodwork when it's safer to go out. I don't want to go sit in that tiny lab room that has butts in the chair all day long (and compare that to the insanity of sitting in a jet for 8 hours).

Thompson, I was thinking out loud when I remarked about convection ovens, but this morning I found a study that looks into it. Skimming it and skipping to the bottom, it looks like the ovens had a liquid source for higher humidity and that the tests had a lot to do with how well the masks fit after being treated in a convection oven. A scalable method of applying heat and humidity for decontamination of N95 respirators during the COVID-19 crisis. From June 2020, so ages ago.

This article (from November, 2020) says dry heat can be used to decontaminate: FDA allows dry heat treatment for single-user mask reuse

So maybe just putting the mask away for a few days? Here is one that is quite bizarre - putting the mask in a paper bag inside a pressure cooker (with liquid? with the weight on top?) in the oven. How to Disinfect Your Mask: A Step-by-Step Guide is from June 2020.

And it sounds like some of them can be washed in water - a combination of treatments may turn up in a scholarly journal if I keep looking. I need to share this over on the COVID thread also. Give people something to dig their teeth into to complain about. :-/

No mail, no banks open today for MLK Day. One holiday isn't enough to bring virus spread to a halt if everyone stays home, so I'm going to postpone returning to my volunteer work by a couple of more weeks.

My jigsaw puzzle is coming along, though I swear there aren't enough edge pieces. Along the area where the dog usually attacked past puzzles, but I've kept it covered. In the end it usually means the size of the puzzle is smaller than I thought (it starts out spread out widely across the table top and compresses with its being solved.)

It's that time of year when a bulb of hyacinth or amaryllis is in a special clear pot (roots in water) to bloom on the kitchen windowsill. This year's purple hyacinth is open - and the smell is strong and sickly sweet. It's the worst of cheap motel soap smells, and I think this plant is going to go into dirt and out to the greenhouse really soon.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Jan 22 - 09:12 PM

Phone calls today to renew prescriptions and to switch from using the GoodRX coupons to actually using my insurance plan. A couple of months ago I revisited the setup with Medicare and our state insurance - to see if I was using those most efficiently. I was (and now I know why). Next, a call to the phone company to decide if the plan I'm grandfathered into is best for me. I think the time has come to tweak it.

Contact has been made with the family of the COVID friend and I am relieved that they have a plan if she needs more help and learned that there are local folks who are checking up on her.

I had groceries delivered to get more veggies and dairy (it was a modest order). The forest floor in the den was swept up, dishes emptied out of the kitchen sink. I did a little digging around in one garden bed, pulling weeds where I'll poke in some sprouting garlic soon. There are still some cluttered kitchen surfaces to organize. I made a big batch of my nacho beef and black beans filling and froze several pound-sized pieces of beef. I'll be freezing some of the cooked mix as well. Tomorrow I'll dice and freeze onions.

Contact with the outside world is digital.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 17 Jan 22 - 09:18 PM

I had a gin sour and a protein bar for supper.

Dimly, I recognize that this is somehow wrong.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 17 Jan 22 - 11:55 PM

Dupont:

Charmion: on a day like today - anything is ok!

The K sink is slowly getting completed - perhaps yet tonight. Slow and not very steady but he is getting there. It is beautiful!!!!!!! But I have stayed out of the K and upstairs all day so eating - well not so great! Needless to say, the counter is awash with tools and parts! R commented: "maybe he sold the house because of the plumbing!" But the prev owner was here over 20 years so I suspect the crappy plumbing was his doing. When R finishes, it will be like Mary Poppins - practically perfect! Why it takes so long!

For R, I took out myriad containers of food and let him choose and nuke what he wanted. Then put them away. I finished the cauliflower soup and have been sitting here eating peanut butter and crackers to get through the night. Cannot even make popcorn. But, OH! how wonderful it will be when complete.

I did manage to do some sorting and putting away on the second floor. Some welcome progress - two empty boxes! And kept the fire going in the wood stove.

And a surprise call from a friend we met thru music - she has the voice of an angel - definitely! - I had tried a couple times to connect but she only answers the phone if she knows who it is. So now she knows - I left a message- and we had a good chat; she lives nearby and would feel comfortable visiting in this large empty house - after her first grandchild arrives - imminently! Something to which I can look forward!

Not keen on going back to Beaver. We got a bunch of snow; they got a bigger bunch. And the temp is dropping again!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 18 Jan 22 - 03:53 AM

speaking of MLK Day 2022


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Jan 22 - 11:26 AM

Dorothy, when I moved into this house in 2002 I had work done in the kitchen, including new counters and a new sink. I had a light put in over the sink and I think the carpenter stood in the left sink when doing that work and it has had a hairline crack in the bottom for all of these years. I noticed last week that the line is longer and a bit more pronounced. I probably need to plan for a new sink this year. I can pick up all of the parts and have a plumber install it and move the disposal unit from the old sink to the new.

Charmion, when do you pick up the new vehicle? Will you have the snow tires put on and have you found a home for the set from the previous vehicle? You seem to have a network there that allows microwaves, dressers, bookshelves, camping gear, and now tires to find new homes. We await the news of where they go!

Doctor appointment scheduled after the office called back and said they'll only do a partial Rx, not a full renewal. I have to go in for bloodwork first so I'll plan to go early and get in and out before lots of people breathe their germs in that lab room. Schools in this area closed down for several days last week to make an extended MLK holiday, hoping to slow the Omicron spread. I fear they simply delayed it; I'll watch the county numbers.

This morning it occurred to me that if I were swept away by COVID that the family would walk into the house and see everything being equal - all of the stuff around here needing to be dealt with, probably swept into trash bags or donated to Goodwill. So what is here that I look at every day that simply doesn't need to be here? I cleared off a small kitchen shelf of things just for display, such as mini jelly jars so old the contents are unrecognizable. A small sealing jar with Kosher salt - I'll just put it with the rest of the salt. Etc. If I do a shelf a day I could clear out some of the kitchen clutter in about a month. And then what to do with it? Recycle, donate, list on eBay. (The jelly is all emptied into a larger container of water and I'll pour the slurry onto the garden area since it works like an organic fertilizer.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 18 Jan 22 - 12:05 PM

I’m still waiting for the revised settlement offer from the insurance company, which is due today or tomorrow. The money will be deposited by Interac e-transfer, and I can complete the deal with the VW dealer when it has landed. The old-fashioned part of the process will be the trip downtown for a bank draft — car dealers like an actual document they can hold in their actual hands.

An important part of a modern car purchase is negotiating the warranties, and I will have to go back to Kitchener to do that. So … I’m looking at maybe another week of driving the cracker-box.

Snow continues to fall in Stratford with no immediate end in sight, and you just bet I’ll have winter tires on the new car before I take it off the dealer’s lot.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 18 Jan 22 - 02:00 PM

Dupont:

After 12 years of two dreadful composite sinks (Montreal and here) I HAVE A BEAUTIFUL STAINLESS STEEL SINK!!!! With a lovely new fully functional faucet. And, when I came down this am, the counter was cleared of tools! I was jumping up and down with joy! R says he still has plumbing to do in the basement - but nothing to do with the sink. He "enjoyed the process"! Problem solving! No end in an old house!

I cleared the front steps and path but will need to move the snowplow ridge to leave. A beautiful sunny day; perhaps I shall just relax, and, later, wash the 3 days of dishes in my beautiful double sink with separate hot and cold faucets!!!

I hope the snowblower will tickle his brain next, and soon!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Jan 22 - 03:55 PM

Oooooo, Dorothy! Sink envy! Enjoy that dish washing.

With this morning's call I changed my phone plan. My monthly bill has averaged ~ $33, it will come in under $20 once the new SIM card arrives for an update to the new plan.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Jan 22 - 10:44 AM

This morning was an illustration for myself of just how much I don't want to catch COVID. I rose early enough to get to the doctor's office for the blood draws right when the doors opened - and was the first one to enter that little lab room for the day. From there to the gas station and realized it has been 28 days since I last bought gas (and I only needed 7 gallons, so not an urgent purchase). I was double masked, and while it's a lot of stuff on your face to have the N95 under the cloth mask, I was certainly protected.

Another morning, so another shelf declutter. Interesting what you find when you use a step stool and tongs to reach for the contents of a long-ignored cupboard. Contents organized, one item to the Goodwill bin, and one in the eBay stack. And I'd forgotten that I have dog-bone-shaped cookie cutters for making dog biscuits. I'll make some this week if I have the ingredients here (brown rice flour, no wheat flour--I think there's some in the freezer).

We have another few really cold nights ahead. Last year at this time it was cold but not frigid. Tomorrow is the 1-year anniversary of my first COVID vaccine, when I stood in a chilly line on a damp day and every person in that socially-distanced line was thrilled to be there, to start the real fight against COVID that we could take part in. I found an appropriate meme on Facebook yesterday - it said "I didn't realize that 2020 was going to be a trilogy."


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Jan 22 - 12:11 AM

My gift card from the new printer (Dell) was about to expire, so I ordered the new Ring doorbell with those points. Time to figure out how to install it once it arrives. I'll enter the domain that Jon inhabits, being able to view the outside world through a camera account. My phone was updated today with a new SIM card from my company and already I can see a difference - the Google Voice calls ring through with a small screen that lets me accept or reject the call. Excellent! I was dealing with outdated technology.

A trip to the pharmacy fully masked (KN95 under 3-layer cloth) was quick and late enough that the store was quiet. And since it was even quieter at Aldi I stopped to pick up some of my favorite chocolate (not available for delivery via Instacart - the entire inventory at Aldi doesn't appear on their list). I wanted to get in and out so didn't go looking for any other things I could use (but don't need right away). The fridge and freezer are crammed, it's only the produce I need to round off everything else.

I feel like I'm grounded; no plans to leave here until Feb. 1, for a doctor's appointment. Damn Omicron. 13 days. My county is under a disaster declaration and the rate of spread and hospitalizations is even higher than Dallas County. New drive-thru testing sites have been open at large facilities (stadiums) with FEMA staff here to deal with the numbers of people needing testing. It's last winter all over again, but worse.

On a bright side, the flannel PJ pants I ordered arrived this afternoon and are in the dryer. We have a very cold spell moving into the area.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 20 Jan 22 - 12:59 PM

You heard it here first: HP printers have too many websites, and figuring out how they work is beyond the ken of a normal human. That's 90 minutes of my life I'll never get back.

My previously autistic computer is working wirelessly again, but I don't know why it stopped in the first place and I don't know why it decided to resume cooperation. I have a nasty sneaking feeling that it's at the point in its service life where it thinks it doesn't owe me anything any more. Dammittohell, the thing was purchased in 2017! It's practically brand new! (Gales of hollow laughter, Bruce).

And it's cold in Stratford, and I'm fed up.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Jan 22 - 02:23 PM

I helped a friend with her new-last-year printer when it stopped communicating and finally suggested she use a cable and found the correct one on Amazon (a $6 fix). That was a 45-minute phone call. Once she had the cable the printer started working wirelessly again. It is their job to make fools of all of us.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 20 Jan 22 - 08:25 PM

Not computer — printer. But you knew that.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 21 Jan 22 - 04:39 AM

my printer/scanner finally died at christmas & & I've been trying to get a new one since - no stocks!

I've been recommended a brother MFC mono laser & they are even scarcer than hen's teeth. I need the scanner more than the printer, tho I do print, sometimes a lot! & so does my neighbour as she does everything with her phone.

I scan archival documents from the 50s & 60s so don't want the "recommended for you" offered instead of the one I want - A. it is bigger with a pop-out paper drawer, B. it costs more & C. gives me stuff I don't need. (grumble)

A - no room for a taller machine & a pop out tray, B & C. why pay more for "features" I'll never use - paper tray that takes a zillion pages, & option to scan dozens of pages at once ... (GRUMBLE)

I'm planning to visit a large office supplies shop tomorrow & speak to a staff member about the other printer/scanners on their shelves & there are very few of them - see which smaller ones they recommend, cos I've been mainly grumbling & not doing much research

sandra


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 21 Jan 22 - 11:11 AM

No stocks here, either, Sandra. I will continue to nurse along the printer I have -- clunky great nuisance that it is -- until its software problems become terminal. Let's hope the world is working better when that happens.

I finally got the complete price of my new-to-me car, complete with extended warranties and snow tires. It's an insane amount of money, far more than I would have spent if the motor vehicle industry were not in a complete tizzy due to supply shortages. The VW dealer in Kitchener had nothing else to offer that came even close to my modest requirements, and in fact the car I'm buying is much fancier and more powerful than I need or even want. An American car would have cost less, or perhaps a Kia, but I've driven VWs since the 70s and I'm used to their quirks. So I'm paying over the odds for fancy wheels with familiar quirks. First World problem.

For the first time in living memory I feel like cleaning the house. I had better do it before the urge goes away.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Jan 22 - 12:32 PM

Sandra, I have always had a dedicated flatbed scanner, though my recent purchase of the Epson ink jet brought another one into the house. My Cannon is several years old, and it has a few buttons on the front I rarely use (to copy, etc.) Mostly I use it with Photoshop or Adobe and do high resolution scans (300-600dpi). I wonder if for the time being you could find a gently used one on eBay? This CanoScan 4400F also is lit on the top and I can do some low-rez scans of slides and negatives. (I have a dedicated slide scanner that I have to start using.)

I haven't tested printing from my phone to the ink jet printer. I'll have to see if I installed the app and test it with a piece of email.

Two more days and two more cupboard shelves organized and emptied of spare stuff. There is a collection growing on the kitchen peninsula so I have to move all of this to a box and eBay area. Mugs from a Seattle potter and spare dishtowels that didn't all fit in the rolling basket from one cabinet. I'll have to bag the really old ones for rags and they can live in the laundry room for now.

I went down an article-search and YouTube-link rabbit hole this morning with the news of the death of Meatloaf. I learned about him right after his first big album came out; my kids learned about him in Rocky Horror Picture Show and then I got out that first big album and played it for them. I have a solid 4'+ line of LPs here, most of them classical and folk, but there is a solid section of rock contemporaneous with my 20s when I was listening to more and able to buy it. No decluttering going on there.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Jan 22 - 03:17 PM

Looking again at Charmion's remarks about her "modest requirements" in a vehicle. When I had to replace my pickup I went with a small car at first because I was in a hurry and it was affordable. It turned out to be cute as a button but very poorly designed, so when that was traded in I went larger.

The last couple of vehicles have been SUVs. Not because I need to drive eight people around, but because it has enough room, when the seats are put down and a tarp is spread over the tops of those seats, to put lumber up to 10' long in a diagonal position. I put down the middle row of seats (the back row is always down) and again with the tarp I can carry several cubic yards of the free compost the city provides. My recycling of large flattened boxes fit in there, etc. It's an attempt to have the transport ability of a pickup without the sticker shock of buying a pickup. The SUVs used to be on a truck chassis, now it's a unibody that is still ok for hauling stuff. If I had the cash to buy a pickup truck I could afford to pay off my house and buy some kind of small automobile at the same time. And this was BEFORE the supply chain snags of COVID.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 21 Jan 22 - 05:57 PM

I broke it so I fixed it. The upper rack of the dishwasher collapsed when I put weight on it. A drill and a proper screw put it right again.
Cleared large branches from the snow storm. Accross the street a branch pierced the roof. I did bedding laundry that consisted of 4 giant blankets that never would have fit one by one in the old washer. I also leveled the washer only to find it rocks a bit from the pedestal.

The grocery store is too close to go full speed (200mph) so its good I drive so little that fuel is not a problem. I shoulda bought a Hyundai but at least I have never needed a single repair on the CTS performance model which is like a four seat Corvette. I'm a fluid changer believer. The new electric Corvette goes 240mph which is ridiculous in a drive through. In Ohio they have liquor store drive throughs but Maryland frowns on that.
There is no doubt I'm in better shape this year compared to last. Getting up off the floor used to be a challenge and now its a snap.
I go looking for projects when I used to procrastinate even thinking about what to do.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 21 Jan 22 - 07:36 PM

I have no carpentry skills, so i don’t haul lumber. In fact, I don’t need to haul anything bigger than a bag of cat litter or a crate of wine. Consequently, a compact hatchback is all the car I need. Plus, I’m stingy. I hate the idea of paying for the fuel required to move extra weight of vehicle.

Over way too many years of driving, my car has been burgled exactly twice. I’m fairly sure that’s because I have always driven a very modest car and I never leave anything of value in sight, even parking change. And driving a manual means joy-riders don’t bother. In Stratford, I don’t even bother to lock it.

As for drive-through liquor stores … ! I was shocked enough to find draught beer for sale at service stations on the New York Turnpike.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 21 Jan 22 - 09:30 PM

Dupont:

Still reveling in the new sink and faucet. I can use much less water because I can choose hot or cold and not fiddle with the #%$# until I get what I want. Also realize that dishes built up because I avoided the ugly thing! I go down in the morning and tell the sink it is beautiful!

Undressed the little Christmas tree today but decided it was the better part of valour to wait for R to take it out. Most of the water in the big bowl is gone but the mahogany table - even though I put plastic and a cloth over it... Let R do it! In the process of repacking Christmas I re-organized parts of the closet. Have a fair amount of stuff leaving when I go back to Beaver - hoping for first week of Feb ... though I am very comfortable here, I need to check the mail; do not want to ask someone to do it for me.

Saw a moth in something in the upstairs closet so I put the box outside to freeze. Never had moths in all the years I lived in a house thet had no heat unless I were there. Forgot they existed until they ate everything precious when in PA.

Went to produce store today and filled the frig. Nice veg stew cooking and rice. Need to remember I have more root veggies in the cold part of addition. The two spare rooms have their own thermostats. Just sent text to R to remind him to bring home the carburetor for the snow blower; maybe he can get it running tomorrow! Before we get more of this white stuff.

I am loving my new sitting place in the upstairs hall - comfie and bright on a sunny day - today.

Maybe I will ask R to put the big empty bin in the cellar. I have not found a good spot elsewhere. (I do not go to the cellar; afraid of the air quality.)

A thread on FB was discussing K stuff. I pulled off a shelf an induction burner (?) and considered the space it takes and the fact it has never been used as it is a mystery to me - even after googling. Well, the stove is aging and one burner has quit completely so rather than re-home it, I will put it away somewhere - top shelf of pantry that I can only reach with a ladder? Just in case. Re-did that shelf space already! I spent large chunk of my life not buying electric appliances "because someday I will live without electric." And I did. I am slow to change gears! I went all those years without so why would I need it now?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic ridiculous
From: Donuel
Date: 21 Jan 22 - 11:35 PM

If you're one who hasn't had Covid its likely you don't have friends or have abandon them. America land of the craven and home of the hidden. Biden says America has stood up, which is a feat for a 79 year old. Tom Hanks said we are all brave - now put on a face diaper and go hide.
Gun sales have hit a new peak and a new flood of ghost guns are assembled at home. Everyone's armed and there's no one to shoot except in schools. The outlook on coming elections is viewed by both sides as corrupt on both sides now. i've looked at votes from both sides now and still somehow, its all Bull Shit that I see...sorry thats enough of that.
So you don't have to raw dog it, but its time to go back out... in zero degree temps. Things have never been greater, like hypocracy, overcoming depression and death rates. "Two out of three ain't bad".


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Jan 22 - 11:52 PM

The 2x4s and pickets I usually bring in the SUV are for building sections of fence. Not a lot of carpentry skills needed. A level, a screwdriver. Sometimes a carpenter saw if the 2x4s need trimming. Drill and ratchet for the crossmember brackets. I've also bought flooring planks (cheapest available) to use to edge the raised beds in the garden. Lay them on the ground between corner bricks.

I'll probably be making my 4 square mile drive again this weekend - dropping off more cardboard, more stuff at Goodwill, and picking up mail at the post office. Each spot along or at the corner of this 1 x 1 x 1 x 1 mile route. Rinse, repeat.

I'm making progress on the jigsaw puzzle—it has slowed me down to realize all of the pieces are almost the same shape, making it easy to mismatch similar parts of the puzzle. Thank goodness there are some zebras and a flamingo in the African wildlife that give me something to work outward from. It's good to get back to doing a puzzle after being stymied by the last one that was both too difficult and incomplete.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 22 Jan 22 - 09:44 AM

My approach to fence construction is much brusquer than yours, Stilly — save up some money, hire a guy who builds fences for a living, and get it done and dusted. I respect those who can do for themselves, but I can’t (won’t) live with a half-assed result and I know my limits. I’m pretty good at hanging pictures, but beyond that I won’t go.

The Ministry of Health has announced that the latest lockdown has worked as intended so the province can resume limited operations on 31 January. Only half-capacity, still at two metres’ distance and wearing masks, but sorta kinda like the new normal we were getting used to back before Christmas. Will we be allowed to sing in the presence of others? Further deponent sayeth not.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 22 Jan 22 - 10:13 AM

To me FITNESS is =equally= about uninterrupted rest. Some may identify with meditation, restorative sleep or healing deep states.
Good for you if you can get to delta sleep quickly but its not a race.
The most dreams come in alpha sleep or vivid dreams a bit deeper.
An after meal sleep makes it easier however the worst time to eat is late at night. If short spans of sleep is what you can manage do more of them.
I'm not selling anything but whatever improves your rest like a massage or weighted blankets or melatonin, enjoy the toys.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Jan 22 - 12:15 PM

Interesting you would write about sleep, Don. I had the weirdest string of seemingly related dreams last night. I think it was the late chocolate. I know better. (I can't remember what the dreams were about, but they were troubling enough to keep waking me.)

Local health officials are predicting the Omicron cases will rise until the end of the month. But now that more people are using at home COVID tests, they won't know exactly how many cases are out there. There is a county site to report, but it is in English only.

Sneezes today tell me that there is still juniper pollen drifting through the area and the temperature will keep me in. Tomorrow is supposed to spike up to 65o so I should plan to get out to do some work or at least walk the dogs. If I wear one of my masks I'll get less pollen during the walk.

I need to choose today's cupboard to clear. I need to do a deep dive into that capacious cabinet that is in the corner under the peninsula, that has three doors (from the sink side and the dining room side) that open into it and that is where odd things go to be saved until I need them but I forget they're there. I should install a couple of those battery under-cabinet lights in there so I can see, instead of needing a flashlight.

The front of the fridge was cleared of several old papers and calendars. I don't have the discipline to have a completely clear fridge; the fridge and freezer are where magnets hold up all sorts of notes and treasures, though a bit of time watching one of the HGTV hoarder programs is enough to have me want to dump a lot of that stuff. With those programs a little goes a long way.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Jan 22 - 10:01 PM

After several attempts I figured out how to get Alexa and LIFX to play nicely and operate the second smart bulb, this one in the den, next room over from the first bulb. I tried creating a second room in the LIFX app and soon realized that was a mistake. They are both marked "Favorites" and that helped. Eventually I found the device as far as what Alexa knew it was and renamed it (I'm not going to say "Alexa, turn on mini-bulb model 12345x.") Now she turns on either/or. I'm embarrassed to say how long it took me to set this up after originally buying the bulb. A smart doorbell is on order. We'll see how that goes.

As a bonus technology win, I don't use Facebook on my phone much, but I wanted to log on today so used the synched password, then for the first time was asked to use the new FIDO (Yubico) and I used the Near Field Sharing to touch and get it to work. I set this device up as another form of two-factor authentication last fall.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 23 Jan 22 - 11:37 AM

I have enough trouble keeping the printer in communion with the computer. The rest of the house and its contents will remain un-smart.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 23 Jan 22 - 11:42 AM

Smart technology doesn't make what already works stupid.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Jan 22 - 04:35 PM

I got a FIDO (Fast Identity Online) key several years ago for logging on securely to my accounts on a university computer in the public area. They're not expensive and not difficult to set up on various online accounts (Wordpress, Facebook, Twitter, etc.) to get into those accounts (and block someone who might want to hack them). I updated it last year because I realized the old one couldn't be used on the tablet with the USB-C devices (and getting one with NFS ability means it doesn't need to actually be plugged in.)

With a bit of practice I've figured out how to send documents and email from my phone to the networked printer and make it print double-sided.

Yesterday afternoon I started wondering if I had caught COVID or the flu - but by the time I went to bed the achiness was so awful that it dawned on me that I had somehow, in all of this masked world through which I travel, picked up one of those 24-hour viruses that I used to get back when I was in college or working in places with lots of public contact. The kind that feels like you were beaten with a baseball bat. Sleeping around the clock helped along with staggering a Motrin/Tylenol cocktail. No fever, and a COVID test this morning was negative. Tomorrow I'll go get one at a drive-thru location near here just to be safe. It's ironic - I was last out on Wednesday, to a doctor's office and a pharmacy. And thinking back to my weird dreams overnight before this started - that tends to happen when I'm getting sick.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 23 Jan 22 - 07:39 PM

Dupont:

Tech-wise (dumb!) I am with Charmion. Today I figured out how to bring my phone onto the car screen so R could phone someone - not while driving but he parked! YAY! Apps on phone?? Guess I might need a "passport"; hope someone can do it for me. I have my 3 pieces of paper from shots. In a pinch, I can find a place/phone # by asking the phone. It seems to change things with no help from me - ARGHHH!

Christmas Tree was giving last rites and R took it outside for the critters. I swept the debris and put it amongst the containers for the fire. And cleaned the wood floors. The induction thingy was put on a top shelf by R; if we need it, it is there. In the meantime, it is well out of the way.

Plumbing debris is dismissed but under sink is not really done as, apparently, some work "needs" to be done in cellar and may affect what it under sink...???? So, not knowing when this might happen, I will put the stuff back under the sink and keep an eye out for a shelf/shelves to make the area more efficient when it is done and the nice lino in place. I keep telling R, "have I told you..." He is apologizing for having taken so long, to him it was "just a dirty sink". If I had not ordered the faucet, he might never have... I guess I must stop "rubbing it in".

Runs to grocery and to produce store, at off times, last week. Frig and freezer full, still bread from that big order out on the deck frozen. Put large jugs of juice between back doors; the cranberry was frozen solid last night; still on table thawing! I suppose I could take everything out of the smallish freezer and reorganize it. Without even taking it outside but I could put it out if I needed to. Interesting idea as I am sure there is stuff that has gone to the bottom. Manana?

Since I cannot put fabrics in the beautiful DR cupboard (not mouse proof), I will use the drawers for extra jars and plastic bags... New thought as I remembered I started using a drawer for plastic bags. Make more room for other things in mouse-proof pantry.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Jan 22 - 08:07 PM

Despite being tech savvy I haven't set up the phone via Bluetooth to the SUV. I find it a huge distraction to have to figure out what to push if it rings when I'm driving. And since about 90% of the calls I get are spam, there is no point it bothering to link them. In my last vehicle I had a little Bluetooth connector between my phone and the speakers via the accessory setting, but it wasn't set for the phone service, I just used it for listening to audiobooks.

I think the virus has passed; I'm feeling kind of wrung out but no longer chilled like yesterday. Time to change the sheets and take the extra blanket off of the bed that I needed overnight.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 24 Jan 22 - 11:18 AM

Among the many things I like about Volkswagen cars are the phone-to-car connection and its controls: a button on the steering wheel to accept or end a call and a rocker switch for sound volume. I don't have to take my eyes off the road at all -- and I'd hate to have to tell you how long it took me to learn to work it without fumbling. I use the phone while driving as the pilot of an aircraft uses the radio, and if callers think I'm brusque too damn bad.

As for spam calls, I fixed that problem by setting the phone to ring only when the caller is in my contacts list. Everything else goes to voicemail, and legit callers leave messages.

It's snowing again in Stratford. Bleah.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Jan 22 - 12:20 PM

That's the thing I haven't taken the time to do - and I know practice with the car settings is the only way to respond easily when it's in use. Not being motivated to spend the time practicing is the culprit. I've set the phone so a lot of spam is caught by the Hiya app. I took a look at the device settings, and while Google Voice will forward only people in my contacts list, the company that the phone is activated with doesn't seem to offer that in it's settings. But maybe I should set using the Bluetooth effectively as a goal for this year. It won't cost me anything to add that new-to-me feature.

Another day of late rising means the trash was already collected on my side of the block but not next door and up the hill, so I walked my bag of trash to keep company with the neighbor's trash bag. I have a can full of the cut-up pieces of the last sunflower but haven't put it out yet. If it gets windy the wad of dried flower parts may blow down the street like a tumbleweed. Maybe I should just tote that to the far back of the yard and let it drop seeds back there.

After an almost catatonic weekend I've started organizing another kitchen "shelf," in this instance, The Junk Drawer. Everybody has one, right? I found some great stuff in the junk drawer at my Dad's house (things I still use here now) and this drawer is equally interesting - it contains things that had a use that can be used again, if only I remember they are here. I so far have extracted a handful of screws, smashed coins, and expired dog license and rabies tags. I don't know of a museum collecting such icons of a life lived, so I may take one of my old yogurt containers and dump those items into it for the kids to look through on their next visits. Do they want the flattened penny embossed with the nature center logo that we probably paid a dollar for? And more. Or maybe I'll toss them all now and the tiny past memory will be less durable. A handful of various screws went from that drawer into the large plastic ex-pickle jar in the laundry room where I typically go when I need to find the right sized screw for something. This drawer will probably take a while, but I've made a good start.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Thompson
Date: 24 Jan 22 - 12:20 PM

The phone should really be in the boot when you're driving. Safer that way.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Jan 22 - 01:21 PM

The phone has an app that sets up a "do not disturb" mode and it doesn't ring or make noise when I'm moving. But there are times when a call out might be useful. And if I do connect them, I can again listen to audiobooks while I drive.

Sweeping, vacuuming, dusting, and now moping in the office is finished and I'm waiting for the hard plastic chair mat to dry in the hall bathtub. It needed a scrub with the hard bristle brush on both sides. I think putting a few rugs and a couple of dog bed covers through the laundry is the next move.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 24 Jan 22 - 04:22 PM

For the record, I don’t have a junk drawer in my kitchen any more.

There’s a box in the Glory Hole where I put gadgets I haven’t used in a while. If I miss a gadget, I return it to service. If it’s still there when an opportunity (such as a church rummage sale) arises to get rid of the box contents, I obviously didn’t need it. A couple of weeks ago, I cleared the contents of the junk drawer into either that box or the trash. Almost all if it went in the trash.

Now the Foodsaver vacuum sealer lives in that drawer with the box of batteries and the downstairs flashlight. No more junk drawer.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Jan 22 - 09:04 PM

Every time I read the name of your basement storage space I am reminded of a very racy scene in Judith Krantz' Scruples novel.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: keberoxu
Date: 24 Jan 22 - 10:07 PM

"Mopping" in the office is finished, Stilly??


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 24 Jan 22 - 10:43 PM

Anyone who tries racy stuff in my Glory Hole deserves the inevitable painful result.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Jan 22 - 11:33 PM

Mopping is finished, and the room has the slight lemon-fresh scent of PineSol. Three dog bed covers were washed in a Gain knockoff detergent from Aldi (I usually use a gently scented environmentally friendly detergent sheet) and a HUGE gob of dog hair came out of the dryer lint filter. I wiped down the inside of the washer and got a fair amount of dirt and hair, and when I pulled the dry covers out of the dryer there was still a piece of chewed stick stuck to one of them.

Of course they couldn't leave it alone - this evening I walked into my office and could see muddy footprints on the tile floor, tracked all the way through the house from the back door after today's rain. Gotta love 'em, the dogs don't leave anything clean for long.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Jan 22 - 01:20 PM

Something went pear-shaped overnight when I set up system restore to get the glitch out of my desktop computer's right click context menu operation. The account on the Windows 11 thread.

I'm waiting on an onion bagel to toast as part of lunch. I'll focus on not burning the bagel or dropping the butter, and work upward from there.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: keberoxu
Date: 25 Jan 22 - 01:45 PM

I asked about the mopping, Stilly, because
the 24 January post reads "moping".


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Jan 22 - 01:54 PM

Dyslexia and no squiggly red line under the word work hand in hand to give lots of typos like that.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Jan 22 - 05:47 PM

I really should have removed that external drive with all of the video files. It's killing me waiting for the backup before the reinstall, but it has started so I'm not going to interrupt it. 12% after 3 hours.

I have the old computer set up and am going to do some photo processing on it (it doesn't connect to the Internet), and I have this little backup laptop in the kitchen I mostly forget about. Limping along, but it's like travelling in the Shuttlecraft instead of on the Enterprise.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: JennieG
Date: 25 Jan 22 - 07:53 PM

Many many years ago (when I was young and slender.....sigh) I worked for the Goodyear tyre company, back in the days before computers and copy machines when typists used carbon paper to make more than one copy. (Yes, I am that old.)

I was given a letter to type referencing the end-of-year shutdown when many employees took their annual holidays, to allow for factory machine maintenance. It was duly typed; I checked it, my boss checked it, his boss checked it, for all I know the Big Boss Upstairs checked it too.....and it still made its way to Akron, Ohio, with the heading "Christmas Shitdown", causing, I believe, great merriment on arrival.


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Subject: RE: Tech: They lied, Here's Windows 11
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 26 Jan 22 - 07:18 AM

Sorry about the PC, SRS. Sometimes, they seem to conspire to be as bloody minded as possible... I hope you've got it sorted. Re your question in the other thread, if I was faced with the reinstallation of everything, I would put Win 11 on but that's just me.

I got more gadgetry yesterday. A SPDIF audio splitter and a Bluetooth transmitter. Sound from the living room tv can now be played to Bluetooth headphones and/or the tv sound base. With luck, it will put an end to mum moaning about sound (either too loud or sometimes on at all) from the tv. We’ll have to see how it goes but dad has said he’s quite comfortable with the headphones.

A couple of little things I need to do, partly as mum had a clear out in the bedroom are to have a bonfire. I'll try to do that tomorrow as the forecast is for a bright sunny day. She also wants some bases of drawers lining. I got some coloured A2 card from Amazon for this but need to motivate myself to to the job.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Jan 22 - 10:42 AM

As a recipient of both the super-strength Flu vaccine and three of the COVID vaccines, I can only conclude that I had a modified version of the flu last weekend. COVID test came back negative. Whew! I have needed to pick up mail at the post office for days and didn't want to go till I knew for sure.

Amazon came through overnight with a faster external hard drive and I'm moving data from the drive that will be wiped by Windows to a backup via the old computer with no Internet connection. In a few hours I can let the new desktop be exposed to the ministrations of Dell and Windows and see if it will come back with a completely empty "renewed" machine. Then I have to work on it quite a lot before I can work on it. It looks like no more drawer decluttering for the rest of the week.

Damn. The machine is dead. Long live the machine.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Jan 22 - 03:44 PM

My kitchen laptop is now connected to the ink jet printer (thank goodness that was in place - the network doesn't need the big computer to be running, or even extant, to run). I installed a new browser to use with my work accounts and have slowly added them to a growing list of tabs that will open at once. Glad I don't have to move the laptop into the office or lug one of the printers into the kitchen.

The backup is slowly moving into the new hard drive, and I have an older backup in a hard drive from the previous machine if catastrophe happens (worse than already). But the more current data I can hold onto, the better. I'm going to have to recreate quite a few files for now.

I went in this afternoon and reset the computer to "NEVER" as far as going to sleep. That's what shut down the backup I started yesterday.

There is redundancy around the house with tablets and Bluetooth keyboards, the phone, etc., but working on the big desktop is still the gold standard. Everything else is just getting by.

To make this temporary workspace more comfortable I've moved the pad for my standing desk into the kitchen to use at the waist-high bookshelf where the laptop lives. Elsewhere I rearranged bedroom chairs so I can use a library chair (a solid walnut-looking piece with the back wrapping to the arms, probably not bentwood) as the barre for the exercises I'm starting with the Essentrics program (I have two or three DVDs to work with before I decide if I want to join online). She suggests a simple and portable setup with a yoga mat, a length of cloth or a belt (I'm using the gait belt from my knee surgery PT), and a sturdy chair. Since I'm mostly doing other things than working on my computer today I imagine I'll move more stuff before day's end.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Jan 22 - 11:08 AM

The computer backup slowly continues and my odd kitchen office is up and running. It's a strange day as I continue to remember the things I need to reproduce in order to do the work I normally do (contract job).

My across-the-street neighbor was taken away in an ambulance yesterday; I watched from the house, I didn't step over to say anything. That was a family time and frankly I couldn't tell if she was conscious. I've been in this house about three weeks shy of 20 years and I fear our neighborhood is about to lose one of the fixtures in this little world.

Getting back to work around here, photography for eBay and more moving of things into the donation bin.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 27 Jan 22 - 11:30 AM

I'm making a stand for the new electronic gadget. I've joined a huge 80 lbs subwoofer to a full spectrum speaker and attached a screw removable board permanently joined to the tv base. Perfect height to hold the 80 lb oled 65 inch tv. I couldn't lift it up to the tall wall mount anyway. I thought I had a 65 inch tv but apparently not, since this thing is enormous, with the stand it is 60 inches tall. Its as awkwardly heavy as it is fragile, just a quarter inch thick glass screen that broke when the corner touched the floor. The replacement comes on sunday. Amazing Amazon. So the learning curve has led to this surprisingly good looking new piece of furniture that matches the tv and is more secure than a table with legs.
After all the weight lifting yesterday I feel fine today. I guess it wasn't enough to feel the burn.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 27 Jan 22 - 01:37 PM

Dupont:

With no inclination to go home to Beaver - weather is forbidding with severe cold and sporadic snow; energy level is sub par and I have large chunks of each day when "it doesn't matter". I think I am spending more time in bed than out of bed and even after I get up, I want to go back. Brain gets tired and things do not get read; eyes get uncomfortable and I keep trying to find a solution - a fingertip of honey sometimes helps clear the eyes. Things ache here and there, now and then.

There must be mail in the box at Beaver; I consider asking someone to get it and send anything important to me. Then I don't do anything. I need a new sticker for car license and started to go on line to try to do it... I gave up...

A potter friend suggested "just throw two things"; it is too much trouble to change into work clothes. I keep hoping that tomorrow will be better. Then:

Yesterday I did two loads of laundry - redid the bedding, put the freshly washed throw back on the TV room Futon and everything is put away. A fitted sheet from unknown source (R) is in the "leaving" pile. I also went for groceries - to a store almost empty of people as was the hardware store where I bought two brooms and a large dust pan. This is in hopes of keeping things a little cleaner - one upstairs and one down (no excuses!) and the dust pan is to make an effort to compost the never-ending debris from the huge fern. Also brought in 4 armloads of wood and have kept the stove going. Cooked a batch of rice w/o burning it(!) and a large batch of applesauce w/o...! My new modus o.. is to take apples, cutting board, pan and knife up to TV room so I can sit and ready the apples; take the full pan down and put on stove at a LOW heat. YAY! And a new batch of black beans - unburned! Little things matter. but no pots thrown...

Spent time checking into the state of mind of a friend at a distance; had a great phone visit with a man whom R and I have met and he is aware and doing what can be done. Also messaged a couple other mutual friends to check their awareness that support/encouragement would be good. Will continue to keep an eye on his posts, as well as another friend in crisis. There is so much happening to bring one down these days. Moving into a "senior's residence" is one more blow for the one friend.

Trying to feel better, to figure out what could make me feel better, I finally got it together to soak my feet this morning- in hot water with Epsom salt, then used a couple products to improve the very dry mess of it. And trimmed toenails. This seems so simple but it has not been done in far too long - I just couldn't.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Jan 22 - 08:53 PM

Self-care is something we all need to do, so Dorothy, your comfortable feet are a good start. And paring apples in one room and taking them to the kitchen - sounds good! I've had slow days like that also this week, the process of getting over the bug from last weekend.

I've started doing the Essentrics stretching in addition to the Hinge Health exercises, but figuring out the best time of day is what I'm considering now. I think I ought to spread it out, leave the 15 minutes of hip-strengthening exercises at bedtime and do the stretching when I get up. I'm rearranging the bedroom some to remind me to exercise. Simply turning the bed 90o in the corner where it sits and arranging a washstand and trunk will make more room for the exercise space.

A few more things have been dropped into the donation bin today. The hard drive backup is crawling steadily, and I've again rearranged the kitchen workspace. Standing was getting old so I've shifted the computer two feet to the right to the peninsula counter that has a 12" overhang and tall stools for sitting and eating or working.

I have to go out next week for a couple of appointments and will resume volunteer work. I'm set with masks, and am told that all of the staff in the part of the museum where I volunteer are wearing masks. Good.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 27 Jan 22 - 09:10 PM

I finally took possession of my nearly new VW GTI today. The weather was so disgusting that even the 18-wheelers on the highway were keeping to the usually ignored speed limit, and the Chevy cracker-box tried to ditch itself in a big patch of drifted snow at the county line.

The GTI is comfortable, stable and powerful, just what I like for foul conditions. My bank account is badly deflated, but at least I didn’t have to take a loan.

And the insurance company got its numbers wrong and short-changed me by about two thousand dollars. So that business is still to be settled. I sicced the Stratford insurance broker on them; he has all the direct phone numbers.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 28 Jan 22 - 06:28 AM

The Big Screen store motto "No need to miss a single moment of the agonizing holocaust in crystal clear clarity."

On holocaust remeberance day yesterday Tennesee banned the anti holocaust book 'Maus'.

Never again!

yes again ... sigh ...but this time you can't escape to the USA. You gotta go to Canada.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 28 Jan 22 - 08:12 AM

We have our own crop of asshats, Donuel. Holocaust denial is alive and well in Canada — the home of “none is too many” — and thousands of Afghans our government promised to resettle are still freezing in transit camps or dodging the Taliban. Oh, and have you read about the trucker convoy heading to Ottawa? Check it out — they have a manifesto and everything.

Meanwhile, in another part of the forest, public health restrictions are easing up. The Y reopens on Monday, and choir practice will resume on 7 February. If the stars realign just right, I might go out for lunch next week.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 Jan 22 - 11:50 AM

Despite the current hit to your pocketbook, I am pleased to see you back in a reliable car, and one with a bit more ooomph to help keep you safe. Good job picking it up and not turning the cracker box into a tractor trailer hood ornament on the way there.

The oh-so-slow data transfer is more than half way now. I think by Sunday I'll start rebuilding and then upgrading to Win11. Meanwhile, this WiFi only laptop gives me a reminder about why threads in batches of 50 and with descending numbers are so helpful here at Mudcat. One aspect of moderation mode opens whole threads and it takes a while.

After measuring in the bedroom I decided to simply slide everything over to the left a foot to increase the exercise space. Turning the bed may come later, it's six of one half-dozen of the other. Who knows what I might find that has been chalked up as "lost forever" if I move the bed. I'm thinking in particular there's a pocket knife that disappeared one day. I thinned some of the stuff sitting on the dresser and wash stand, more items to recycle or put in e-waste.

Neighbor transported to hospital this week is hanging on in ICU. I'm prepared to start baking should things change. Actually, either way. If she comes home or if she doesn't, the offering of warm dinner rolls to the household will be welcome (and with a restricted diet she can still eat those). The son really likes my apple pie, so if bad news, it might be time to start joining Dorothy in apple peeling.

My wasband has ordered a new phone, his first ever smart phone. The family is thrilled that he will finally be able to see the photos we send or read longer texts (all of which resulted in error messages in his tiny soon-to-be-defunct slider phone.) He sent me the phone model and I reviewed the options - it looks good. It's a mid-range less expensive Samsung that came out last year, so not super expensive but up to date. The company he's joining is sending it, so hopefully everything is set to go, just transfer the number. I expect to run a tutorial at some outdoors location early next week. Reminding him that it's just a small computer in his pocket will make it easier to learn to use, just not reminding him about the state of the big computer on my desk will make it approachable. :-/


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 28 Jan 22 - 06:47 PM

I reorganized a floor to ceiling 15 foot book case with art encyclopedias, 9 shelves of dvds and 50 lbs of CDs in zip closed note books. Now beside it is a 7 stereo component book shelf. It took me all freakin day. There was enough dust to choke a goat but its all done now after being a catch all for 5 years. I'm glad my step ladder has a railing. There was plenty to donate. I found the cables on Amazon that will take a USB to ancient f plugs so I can use my old onkyo amp with the tv. I found some old HD radios and got them up and running. annnd here comes the snow.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 Jan 22 - 07:55 PM

Sounds like a day of re-discovery, Don! I did that kind of cleaning in my office, though, and had a huge computer crash, so be warned: no good deed goes unpunished!

I decided the tubular sided step stool thing I was using, even with a extended handle, just wasn't sturdy enough, so I gave it to Goodwill after buying a solid fiberglass stepladder.

This afternoon I started work in the sewing studio again, so far ironing the most recently-purchased fabric that had been washed but not rolled so I can arrange it in layers on the cutting board. It's mask time again, and like Dorothy going into her potting studio, it feels wonderful to get back into that creative space.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 29 Jan 22 - 11:26 AM

Dupont:

Managed a bit of cleaning today - maybe an hour of stretching and bending to clear the debris from the fern and and dust and cobwebs as I noticed such with the terrific sun. Went out to find some tahini but only tiny jars available; I searched on line.. But I bought 3 almond croissants, the first in a few weeks to I have been good about that. One half is a treat. Then to M&M for frozen cabbage rolls which R parcels out as a bit of interest to his late night suppers.

Computer informed me I have averaged almost 8 hours a day which seems too much. Some of that is trying to figure it out and a couple long sessions on Applehelp. Then it decided to upgrade and now I need help again. I unsubscribe as much as I can give up. Read a lot of news, and pottery stuff, listen to some music and delete over 100 emails/day. Tiresome and time-consuming but interesting enough. And connect with lots of friends - very important. This all takes time. ...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 29 Jan 22 - 06:12 PM

I have been feeling an urge to watch TV lately, so I toted it out of the basement and parked it opposite the comfy chair. The cats enjoy TV. I hope they like “Station Eleven”.

St James’s Stratford is doing Evensong tomorrow with proper music — but only four choristers (one of them being me) and no congregation in the church; it’s to be live-streamed. We had keep-your-distance rehearsal this morning and it should be boffo, or as boffo as brass-and-class Anglican liturgy gets when performed by a quartet. Proper singing, even in a mask, really gets my endorphins pumping.

The insurance company is fussing over how much to pay me and making a real dog’s breakfast of the transaction. Now they say they made a mistake (that would be *another* mistake) in offering what it said on the bill of sale because that sum included extended warranties. Ummmm, I had to replace the warranties as well as the car … It is indeed true that insurance companies are deeply committed to gathering money in, not paying it out.

Beautiful sunshine in Stratford today, and almost no wind. Cold, but not Army cold.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 29 Jan 22 - 09:49 PM

My ex had a multi-part exchange with his insurance company to get his roof replaced recently. It involved taking it to the next level and bringing in a second opinion because they were only willing at first to offer a few hundred dollars and hope he'd take it and go away. He went through the various protest steps and finally got the new roof. Customer Service hacks. This may help. Back in the day when everything was done by mail and certified letters offered gravitas, there was a book called Super Threats: How to Sound Like a Lawyer and Get Your Rights on Your Own that I used successfully a few times. It's beyond old at this point, published in 1977 before the Internet, before email, before much of life as we know it. But still, the advice about keeping records, registering what you can, keeping notes, taking names, it's all still helpful.

In under an hour the computer backup will be finished and I'll see what I can do to restore the desktop. I'll finish the contract work I do every Saturday to have it out of the way first. Not really looking forward to this. I think I'll do my exercises before I get started, to give myself an energy boost.

I figured out that I can join the online site for the exercise program I'm going to start, then logon to the Fire Stick app to keep the price lower. If I join with the app itself, it's $5 more a month (Amazon takes a 25% cut).

Stay warm, all of you in the path of the snow bomb.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 30 Jan 22 - 05:25 PM

The new computer setup is still a mess, not logging on to email yet (and I can't get it to load all of my settings, but I may find a way to move them from the old computer where it is still installed though unused for 2 years). But I'm slowly adding in things and now with my security suite and Malwarebytes in place, I can move forward.

I have been sewing this weekend, finishing masks I started ages ago. I have a couple of gifts to make once these are out of the way. This is a good activity to alternate with the computer restoration.

And one last observation about the computer - thank dawg I had Chrome synched. It made getting into these sites a lot easier.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 30 Jan 22 - 05:41 PM

I spent 6 more hours of hard work and finished the rest of the room doubling the space. I set up the new organic tv. Like a living being it will degrade over time but its prime of life will offer an image superior to any competition. The wow factor was achieved.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 31 Jan 22 - 10:02 AM

The virtual insides of my big Dell look like a storage shed with a few things on the shelves but no organization to them to speak of. There's a lot of stuff piled up outside waiting to come in. And I'm struggling with Gmail and Thunderbird. Google insists on making it difficult to use these two things together.

The "coldest weather of the season" is headed this way mid-week. Even some snow in the forecast. I'll finish my shopping for fresh produce tomorrow and have everything ready to go. Hopefully no repeat of last February's freeze. We are better prepared this time around, even if the state electrical grid is the same ol' same ol'.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 31 Jan 22 - 12:57 PM

I’m having a visitor tomorrow, so I must clean today. The clouds of cat hair are downright reprehensible.

But first — a visit to the dentist! Whee! My favourite!

In other news, the insurance company has capitulated and will pay what it promised. I’m to receive another lump of dough by Interac e-transfer, probably over night.

Money is always nice.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion's brother Andrew
Date: 31 Jan 22 - 03:14 PM

"Money is always nice."

Money may not have been what you hoped for, but at least it will help you get what you want.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 01 Feb 22 - 10:25 AM

2022 seems to be picking up where 2020 left off; every time I open Mudcat I see a new obit thread for some fine musician who should have lived a lot longer. :-( This is not the kind of "decluttering" we want, planet.

I woke wondering maybe if I'm developing a bit of a bladder infection so first thing this morning I steam juiced some cranberries (from bags in the freezer) to make myself juice to mix a strong batch of cranapple juice. That usually nips it in the bud. And I can use the pulp for baking later.

Appointments this week, today and tomorrow, before the snow arrives overnight Wednesday. There is some cosmic good luck in that timing! The battery for the Canon camera is charged—I love getting photos of the yard and dogs in the snow. Hopefully without the shut down we had last year. I did manage to get some extra mileage out of last year's storm. Since I didn't have much interesting to write about in my holiday letter I extracted portions of the journal I kept during the storm and added a few photos. People were very interested in the photo of the dogs in the closet with me. :)

Steam juicer has finished, cranapple is mixed. Onward into the day.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 01 Feb 22 - 12:15 PM

The last lump of insurance dough has landed, plumping my bank account to a satisfying degree. My visitor came early and has gone home to receive a visitor of her own. I somehow never got the vacuum cleaner and out so the house was just as dirty this morning as it was yesterday, and she either did not notice or was too polite to notice the clumps of cat hair plastered to the grille of the cold-air return.

We had tea and a lovely chat. Her visitor is coming to Stratford to recover from a broken ankle, and we made plans for her to bolt over here for more tea and chat when she needs less demanding company.

I'm not sure Norma Waterson would have been entirely enthusiastic about living a lot longer, Stilly. She was 85, a pretty respectable age at which to pop one's clogs. My grandmother lived to be 98, and she regretted remaining on this side of the sod for at least the last five years of that -- she said so, and I believed her. Blind, deaf and too weak to play the piano any more, she was bored out of her mind most of the time. As for poor Tony, he had MS and death could well have been a relief and a release. We can enjoy their music for the rest of *our* lives, which is lucky for us and good for them, as we can thus hear them as they would like to be remembered.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 01 Feb 22 - 01:08 PM

She was only 82, Charmion.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 01 Feb 22 - 01:19 PM

Okay, Steve, 82. Also a very respectable age.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 01 Feb 22 - 03:09 PM

Whether you are rich or poor its good to get money, but when talking Amazon money,, you're talking obscenities.

One more room to go then all the crap will be concentrated in the basement where the paid purge happens.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 01 Feb 22 - 09:12 PM

I should have extended that remark to past the musical contingent; there seem to be a lot of big names passing away, it has the feel of 2020 again. Here's a Hollywood list as one example. There's a meme out there that says "I didn't realize that 2020 was a trilogy."

It was a busy day, as tomorrow will be, then it'll be weather enforced puttering around the house. The cold weather warning is from Arizona to the far NE of New England, taking in a LOT of territory. I volunteer at a local museum two days a week, and started back up this morning, though they're telling everyone to stay home due to inclement weather on Thursday. I'll be back next week.

Later, Costco was bustling, but is so large that it wasn't too crowded. I know my trip was less expensive than it might have been because I stopped and got a hamburger for lunch before going shopping. The shopping cart fills up in a hurry when you're hungry.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Feb 22 - 11:59 AM

I forgot to roll past the village recycle bins yesterday, but this morning I'm glad that the flattened boxes are still in the back of the SUV. A few will come back into the house to be taped around the outside of the wire kennel, creating a warm cave for one or two of the dogs. I forgot about doing that last year during the big freeze, but it dawned on me this morning as I looked at the large glass doors on the north end of the den. They also have nice dog beds in the den, but I may move them into my office where there is only one external wall and a separate heat pump to keep that room warmer. And come to think of it, if I had to camp out again, the office would be much roomier than the closet but still possible to keep warm. I could build a blanket fort. :)

Lunch today with my daughter, and I think the meal that appeals to me most today involves lots of carbs. A cheesy chicken pasta dish from our favorite French café.

Winter storm warning goes into effect at 6pm today.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 02 Feb 22 - 01:05 PM

BEAVER!

On Monday, realized I had the energy, weather report was good, so I packed up and left Tues am with a very easy trip. Home at 4:30 to a freshly cleared Driveway! (I had texted ahead!) AND no water - frozen somewhere - probably under the floor. Larry came over and we talked about it. Later I remembered vaguely this happening a couple years ago. Pots of snow on wood stove suffice. Phoned R and we reached mutual - that is probable reason. Nothing for it unless it thaws itself. Above freezing today, and yesterday, but that might not be adequate. I can live with it.

However, when I went to go on computer, a small cord is missing. I NEVER... but have searched all possible places. For lack of an 8 inch connector cord, I came out in the snow - wet snow! - to the library, to connect with the world, sitting in car as library is not open AND
I would not go inside if it were.

The house is well provisioned, no water spewing anywhere, only food in the frig froze! Electric is working. Electric blanket warmed bed last night! Cold spell starting tonight so, I dug a path through about two feet of light snow to wood and replenished supply and a path to studio to turn down electric heater which I could not access before I left - cost extra to keep it warmer than necessary but not too bad.

May not go anywhere tomorrow as this wet snow will freeze into a mess by morning. Only one degree above freezing at the moment. Must get home before the freeze starts!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Feb 22 - 07:28 PM

The cold rain has started here, the beginning of the descent in to a cold slippery world for the rest of the week. I got home before much rain started, the plants that needed bringing in are in. It won't be anything like Dorothy's white world, but we'll all be chilly. There are lots of weather closures showing up on websites and news programs. An occasional snow day is nice, as long as it doesn't come with the extended power outage.

I need to go get the bag of lava sand and have it handy for the porch and walks. It does track into the house, but it's what I have around here.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Feb 22 - 10:53 AM

The next door folks give the dogs a treat in the morning, but since there was ice forming overnight I got a text asking if I could keep the dogs in till it was full light (because one of them barks until she gets her treat, though I've reduced the amount of barking by zapping her with a training collar occasionally). I was up a couple of times during the night to take them out (since they usually have free access to the yard via the dog door). Cookie had to be dragged out, she doesn't like that cold, but got lots of praise when she finally pooped and we could all go in again. We all went out to the fence this morning after a text was sent telling them the dog door was again uncovered. I wanted to be sure he got back to the house ok (they have a large concrete patio are behind their house and it's iced over.)

Cookie outgrew her dog jacket since last year and I'm not driving to Petco for a new one in the ice so I'll widen the front leg openings and put a little more Velcro on so it will meet under her tummy. She hated this thing when I first tried to put it on her last year at this time, but once in it she happily wore it for five days straight. Now she loves the idea of a jacket.

Today is a day for long socks, fleece sweat pants, a t-shirt layered under a big baggy sweatshirt, and static electricity like crazy. The house has two heating zones, so in the interest of conserving electricity I'll have the heat up only in the office and let the rest of the house cool down to 62 before the heat comes on over there (it's programmed that way anyway, from when I left the house to go to work, before retirement. I never changed it.)

Baking day today, it seems. And maybe pot roast or a stew.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 03 Feb 22 - 12:49 PM

It’s been snowing for days in Stratford, but the temperature’s dropping now so we can shovel out with confidence that we’ve had our limit. For the moment. I think Neil-across-the-street disapproves of my shovelling technique — or maybe (probably) he’s just gallant. I caught him in the act of clearing my footpath this morning, and yesterday he was working on the driveway when I reminded him that I’m a paid-up customer of Nick’s Snow Removal.

The Fitbit app on my iPad informs me that I have lost 30 pounds since September 2020. No wonder my wonky foot doesn’t hurt so much these days.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 03 Feb 22 - 02:17 PM

Beaver:

Waiting for the drive to be plowed. Maybe I will try to drive out after lunch; try being the operative word! The road is clear.

Shoveled out and got to library, went through emails and a bit of FB. Chilly in the car and I don't want to run the engine more, so home to the wood stove! And a good book. Hoping Steve cleared drive but ... I will park on the road. It is clear and sanded.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Feb 22 - 12:09 AM

I used a saucepan instead of a Dutch oven to make a small batch of pot roast this evening. It took long enough that I ate something else for dinner and this will be for lunch or dinner tomorrow and another couple of meals. My goal is to have way more vegetables in there than meat and I still run out of vege before the meat is gone. I LOVE the potatoes and carrots cooked in this broth.

It stayed below freezing all day, as it will tomorrow. Tomorrow morning is apparently the part of this cold snap that will be hardest on the power grid. Fingers crossed we stay powered up.

Today I continued to work on the organization of my computer files and programs. It's slow going, but looks like it will work when I finish. I'm trying to keep the data on the D: drive and just have the programs installed on the much smaller C: drive. Programs don't seem to give you the option of where to install them like they used to. Win11 reared it's head and said it is time to install. I don't think so.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 04 Feb 22 - 08:55 AM

Another plumbing crisis this morning: water spurting out from under the water softener in the least accessible corner of the basement. The plumber is due sometime this morning, so no pool class for me today. And my next water bill will be a doozy.

This is the third major leak in those aged copper pipes in the four and a half years I’ve lived in this house. They’re original equipment, so they date from 1974, when world copper prices went stratospheric after the Pinochet coup in Chile. I rather think it’s time for a systemic approach to this problem.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 04 Feb 22 - 09:17 AM

PVC pipe is toxic to make (in southern states) but there is nothing safer, better, stronger or cheaper.

Besides garbage day there is little challenge today except for a 40 degree plunge in temps tonight. I set up two laser star makers for the ceiling. It has fictional stationary and moving stars with a cresent moon and various colored nebulas. I used to have am accurate mini planatarium but the lasers stars have more impact.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 04 Feb 22 - 09:50 AM

Aaaaand … this time it’s the water softener, which has died. Bloody hell. Reggie the plumber says a new one, installed, will run me about $1,400.

Well. Ain’t that a kick in the slats?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Feb 22 - 10:40 AM

When it rains, it pours - or, the devices are in cahoots. The water softener sussed the news that the insurance company coughed up the rest of the cash from the car. Devious things, these machines in our lives.

I had another night of getting up in the wee hours to pull on outdoor clothes and take the dogs out. Normally they have full access through the dog door, but the ice is still out there and the 80-year-old next door doesn't need to have the dogs out in the yard barking at 6am to get their over-the-fence daily treat. (As soon as they see their kitchen light on, Pepper starts making noise, though I zapped her earlier this week to stop it for a while.) I let them out after 8am and texted that the dogs were available for their treats. I walked out again, to be sure my neighbor got back into his house ok. I've also sprinkled lava sand on the front walk here and will probably shovel ice in the back on the patio. If I put sand down back there the dogs track it in like crazy. Getting out the back glass sliding door is difficult with the iced up track. I have to lift the door up a bit before it will slide. This isn't the time of year to have that door go off the track completely so I'm very careful.

There seems to have been an explosion of paper around here so tackling that is job one today.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 04 Feb 22 - 03:19 PM

Beaver:

Is the water softener really necessary?

Drive is plowed. No point in going anywhere at -17C. But I came out to library to use the internet. Steve told me something about a whole lot of complaints about Trudeau, and the trucks are still in Ottawa? Hope to find some news.

Oh, and in Toronto as well. This is not good.

Well, the wood is in, the sun is shining, the bills are paid, and water is on the stove. Now I can go home and continue the book.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 04 Feb 22 - 06:17 PM

Oh, yes, the water softener is necessary.

Stratford water is liquid limestone. Without the softener, the entire plumbing system of the house would eventually block up with limescale, and all water-heating appliances would be doomed. Also, detergents and soaps do not work properly in hard water.

I drove out to Millbank this afternoon to order a TV console from the Mennonite furniture factory there. Millbank is way out in the country, deep in redneck territory, and I saw many protest signs on the way, including even an American Confederate flag hanging off a beat-up truck in the bustling metropolis of Gad’s Hill. Colour me disappointed in my neighbours, who should damned well know better.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Feb 22 - 11:37 AM

I did a Google search on Mennonite furniture makers in that town; they have some nice pieces (and must contract with a web content producer to put up their site?) How long from order to delivery? Will you pick it up? I don't suppose it comes to town in a horse-drawn wagon?

Mail was held up for two days, some of it delivered in the village yesterday, but upon checking with "Informed Delivery" I see they still had mine at the depot in a holding pattern. Hopefully today the mail carrier will crunch through the remaining ice on my street and bring it by. I put sand on the walk yesterday.

It was another night of the dogs in with the door flap covered, so I was up before dawn to take them out then re-cover the door. This morning their treat will be late because my neighbor was going out for coffee with an old friend and will be home any minute. I've had the cover on this morning, but at about 10am all three dogs rattled into my office and made it clear they all needed something, and as we went back through the house they were glad to see me remove the door. Now they're out in the slush and sunshine and can come and go as they wish. I'll be mopping the muddy den floor every day this week, I'm sure.

Meanwhile, my computer setup has two browsers with the extended desktop, but since the rebuild Browser #1 kept turning itself off after 60 seconds of no activity. So, for example, studying my paper notes to solve Wordle this morning had it going off too soon. Tweak the mouse and it's back, but the shutoff is annoying. I researched the sleeping browser and decided it is way too early in this rebuild to start playing with the RegEdit stuff, so found a troubleshooter to try. It reset the sleep time and I went back and put it where I want, but in the process it seems to have fixed the sleeping browser problem. Whew.

I've ordered items for the exercise program I am going to begin (Essentrics) - I have the donut cushion (meant for hemorrhoid sufferers) that is good under your hip for leg lefts (my sister swears by it) and ordered two pair of yoga pants. The pants I have here seem to have shrunk since I bought them 2 years ago . . . I was wearing yoga pants under my fleece pants during the freeze so they aren't just for exercise.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 05 Feb 22 - 04:41 PM

The Mennonites of Millbank Family Furniture are not Old Order folks in buttonless clothes, but modern Canadians who happen to belong to a communitarian sect of Anabaptists. I’m sure they do their own website, if only because it’s very basic — the kind a business has when they know their customers go on line for reconnaissance and won’t buy until they see the goods in real life.

The TV stand I ordered will come to Stratford by truck, probably around Easter. It’s to be built of quarter-sawn oak that will weigh far more than I can hoist by myself even if it would fit in the car, which I rather doubt.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Feb 22 - 11:31 PM

I thought buttons were standard but zippers were forbidden. My great aunts (on my father's side) had a summer house in Amish country in central Pennsylvania (very near Mudcat Central, as a matter of fact) and I would see the black horse-drawn family carriages roll past the house.

Loading email into the new computer setup is still problematic - is it going to the C: or the D: drive? There are tons of messages in several well-established accounts. And today I realized that after years of not allowing download of messages, Yahoo seems to have set up POP email access without an annual charge. That one predates gmail by several years. At one time Yahoo had a lot of my activity with not only email but also photo albums (sold off and eventually ending up as Flickr, I think). The history of the Internet is written in Yahoo, one of the first big indexes (as compared to a search engine) way back when.

After an evening of laundry and picking up the bedroom is back to the pre-deep freeze setting, with the bed made, flannel PJs through the laundry, and things generally back to normal. But as predicted earlier, the muddy prints stretch through the house. First mop of the week will be before bed this evening.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Feb 22 - 10:40 AM

Nix the Yahoo mail, it turns out they still want cash to download into a computer program. I forget about it for years at a time, but it can work as a backup email if some account insists on an email account in order to get a discount.

My attention can once again turn to the outdoors since it will warm up into the 70s by midweek. I have a list of garden chores to start, with the first being to trim the dry canes from around the asparagus. There are still pieces of ice around, but yesterday afternoon I took a straight-ended shovel and noisily scraped the ice off of the paths up to the doors.

The jigsaw puzzle* of the African Veldt with an astonishing number of biomes around the edge (tropical additions for color) is coming along. I might manage to finish it this week.




*Try to avoid these same-shaped puzzle pieces in the future. They're murder to assemble.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 06 Feb 22 - 10:55 AM

Mennonite rules vary by congregation; some are very restrictive and others hardly at all. Any time I go to Canadian Tire or Zehr's supermarket, I see Mennonite women in bonnet, apron, and dress down to the ankles charging through the aisles with loaded carts and packing their booty into minivans (usually black) in the parking lot. My favourite garden centre employs packs of teenage Mennonite girls who pair the uniform t-shirt (scarlet!) and shorts (very short!) with a little white pleated cap that looks just like a muffin-tin liner pinned over their up-done hair. At the other end of the spectrum, at the doctor's recently I saw an elderly gent so pious that his coat and waistcoat (black) were hooked together in front, eschewing buttons; only heaven knows how his trouser flies work.

Amish mileage probably varies.

Perth County joke: What goes clop, clop, bang bang, clop, clop, clop? A drive-by shooting in Millbank.

I woke up this morning with a nasty, suspicious stiffness across my lower back from hip to hip and no idea what caused it. My tentative plan to haul the vacuum cleaner downstairs to de-fur the parlour has moved to the Pending file in favour of a long walk. The weather is beautiful: brilliant sunshine, very light breeze, not too cold.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 06 Feb 22 - 12:42 PM

Beaver:

Sorry to hear about the water problem; I have never encountered that one. Of course, I am still working on melting snow; washed a few needfuls and a very few dishes/cutlery. All those years off the grid did me well in knowing how little water I really need! Just keep bringing in pans of snow, melting on wood stove and decanting into a wash basin and use as necessary, ensuring that very little is necessary.

Spent a good part of my life in Amish/Mennonite territory in PA. A wide variety of beliefs and ways of doing things. The one I like best is the phone in the barn with an answering machine - lest it interfere with family life! Good people but many are very conservative, VERY! Akin to Quakers in their pacifism, but a world apart in some other thinking.

Meanwhile, out by the library, I will check into emails and FB. At home, reading some archival materials of the last 50 years and wondering if this or that person might be interested. Also trying to pass on a stack of good Quaker pamphlets to people who might appreciate them. And bringing in wood and white water!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Feb 22 - 12:25 PM

It will warm up to about 70 by midweek so I'll make a point of walking the dogs and doing some gardening (the asparagus needs attention if I want a crop).

Last night I realized that Pepper had a puncture wound on her neck, and her Invisible Fence collar might have been involved (it had the long prongs on for now). It could also be that the noisy squabble she and Cookie had in the yard a couple of nights ago resulted in a bite that the collar is aggravating. I've taken the usual steps of temporarily removing the collar, cleansing the spot, and adding the pet antibiotic (Panalog). I'll watch and clean and if she needs to see the doctor, try to make that call by tomorrow so I can get in later this week. COVID really shut down the ability to get in to see the regular vet because they're not taking walk-ins (they used to have an extra charge for that, but far cheaper than the emergency vet costs). Pets, like children, have any number of injuries over the years that can be tended successfully at home. I think this is one of those. (As for the dogs, it's the classic case of they can't live with each other and can't live without each other.) Meanwhile, I think my order of heartworm medications has arrived in the mail today. I had to order from Australia because my UK site has closed down. Buying the same products from outside the US costs about 1/3 to 1/2 of the US amount from the vet, but again, COVID. I had to buy from the vet for the last 18 months and it costs a small fortune. The foreign sales weren't going because of no flights. Australia seems to have recovered quicker (and the vet actually told me about this place).

I have a trip to the northeastern section of the county this week for my haircut, so on my way home (I live in the southwestern section of the county) I'll make my usual loop of favorite shops to pick up my next bottle of olive oil, get the Middle Eastern soap I like (also olive oil), etc. I worked over there for 20+ years and that is still where some of my favorite stores are, but COVID has restricted the number of trips I make. The shopping list is growing.   

Since I made cranberry juice last week I had pulp in the fridge to use or freeze, so I made a batch of cranberry bars. Less sugar in the batter was better because the last batch was too sweet (it has to do with the cake mix you use as your dry ingredient). And I roasted chopped walnuts to add. A portion of the batch is in the freezer and I'll share the rest to neighbors. Did I mention that my fat pants are a little snug? I have to give most of these away or burst the seams.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 07 Feb 22 - 03:52 PM

My back is all seized up again, and very uncomfortable. I went to the physio clinic this morning -- thank God he had a cancellation -- and getting into and out of the car was a double dose of misery; any movement that involves both leaning forward and twisting at the waist sets up a roar. Just getting dressed is a challenge!

First choir practice of the new term tonight, and I'm not sure how I'm going to sing in this state. (Yes, proper singing requires lower back muscles.) I'm bumming a ride, though. Driving is just too awkward right now.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 07 Feb 22 - 05:42 PM

I've had a lower right backache since last spring. I water massage in the shower since the hot tub is outside. My barkolounger reliner lazy boy has intense massage and heat so I combine it with an Amazon movie now and then.
I restored all the kitchen cabinates and sink with soft scrub and magic erasers. They are the original almond color now instead of a grimey yellow. New floors in the spring.

I hear Canada has had demonstrations by the pandemic weary and have caused some trouble taking over food kitchens for the homeless since restaurants won't let them in without vax cards and masks.
We see no need for hoarding food but the freezer is full.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Feb 22 - 11:57 PM

So sorry to read about your aches and pains, and especially when you have the new car to drive (if you could only get in and out.) I am finding that even just 15 minutes of exercise a days helps with some of my morning achiness, but I'm also finding that some stretch moves trigger the upper abdominal hernia to be more of a problem - it may be from damage during early-teen gymnastics or decades later pregnancy, and getting worse now. Our bodies are maps of our earlier activities.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 08 Feb 22 - 08:51 PM

Dupont:

Surprise! I had thought to stay until next Tuesday but a long phone call with a long missing friend shook lose a lot of thoughts (good). So, this am as I was going about the usual "routines", I suddenly decided I needed to leave. It was 11:30 and I was on the road just after noon. Here at 5 pm. Still light! off loaded, wrote longish email to friend. Actually the death of Bill Staines whom we both loved and who was our original connection, shook loose a need to connect.

I only forgot one thing. Still looking for what has happened to that connection cord; I don't need it here but it has to be somewhere!

Left Beaver is good order; house here is in good order. Two other phone calls yesterday - spent about 4 hours total on phone! But one was from a friend of 40 years whose wife died 4 years ago. I had not known until I couldn't reach them and called a brother. Oops. I was matron of honour at the wedding and I had been pretty good at staying in touch... So Ralph is still in the process of healing; writing poetry and songs to honour her. He is not a musician so this will be interesting. He is a highly intelligent, very conservative, minister, who used to design trails in a provincial park, with his first degree! Maybe he can also write music!

Maybe tomorrow I can throw a few pots...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 09 Feb 22 - 08:26 AM

Day Four of the latest back spasm is … not quite as bad as Day One. Choir practice on Day Two was just awful, every deep breath a stab in the sacroiliac. Day Three featured a slight improvement, thanks to Physio Guy and his magic acupuncture kit, and I’m hoping for a better day today. Pool class at 9:30 — if I can climb into the car, I’m going.

I turned out the pantry yesterday, dumping stuff with way too much seniority that I knew darned well I would never use. The dehydrated whole milk from circa 2010, the curry powder from the earliest days of Stephen Harper’s first ministry … out to the green (municipal compost) bin. I don’t know how long dehydrated milk takes to go rancid, and I’m not willing to find out the hard way.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 09 Feb 22 - 11:36 AM

Dupont:

We can have a good laugh over, "maybe tomorrow I can throw a few pots." Maybe today I can stay awake, barely, and watch TV, or go back to bed for awhile.

Driving the 401 yesterday, there were signs of spring that I did not see a week ago! The willows have a tinge of spring colour. The temp is up to freezing today, was 2 above yesterday! And we can still manage to park in the yard in spite of the last snow - about 8 inches. It takes determination and a lifetime of dealing with Snow. The snowblower is not yet repaired but at least the carburetor is back in the same vicinity. We could get lots more before, and even into, April.

Robin dragged in a huge light fixture - suitable for a large office... For the upstairs BR/office. Both feet (mine) are dug in. There are beautiful light fixtures in the Mill.

R kept the plants alive and did not complain at the new tiny yellow rose bush that I could not resist. Some of the Kalanchoe are blooming and the white lantana is opening. I am hoping some of the Af violets will bloom before the horticultural Society plant sale; people like to see the colour. I do too. I have started putting in labels when I know where that leaf came from; I cut strips from the sides of yogurt containers for labeling - after months of thinking of purchasing commercial ones! Duh!!

Maybe, later, I will shovel off the back deck...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 10 Feb 22 - 10:04 AM

The back is much better today, just in time for my monthly trip to the allergist in Kitchener. Filthy weather, though; snowing and sleeting and generally borderline dangerous.

The new water softener was installed yesterday, and Reggie the plumber is so fed up with his employer’s new management that he’s transferring his flag to the competition. I’m equally fed up, so I’ll follow. What good is a new management that doesn’t pass messages or return calls, and always treats you as if you’re calling for the very first time?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Feb 22 - 10:38 AM

Following the help is a time-honored practice - I did that this month with the dental hygienist I always see at the dentist's office. When the good dentist retired and the indifferent one took over, it was time to move on. I followed the person I see the most in these transactions.

Binged yesterday on ice cream I haven't had for ages. But maybe that is the last for a while - now it's warming and it's time to get more outside exercise. We also could still have freezes or snow (we've had snow in March), but I would like to decree that I've had enough of that and it should be spring soon and I need to get moving.

I see by Informed Delivery a postcard coming from one of our august membership - interesting, she must have read my mind, because I've been thinking I need to ship some pickled okra that direction. (The funny thing about Informed Delivery is that you can read the postcard before it arrives because the message is usually on the address side, opposite the art.)

There are lines at the gas station lately, and I haven't had time. Today I do have time so I'll queue at Costco to fill up. And hope this resolves itself quickly.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 10 Feb 22 - 03:29 PM

Dupont:

Energy started to flow about 7 pm and I made a big pot of veg stew - yummie. It was still hot when R came home (10:30) and declared it very good. Prior to the stew I simply was on the computer. Ordered some packaged "Indian" about a dozen, at 2.99 they go nicely over rice with some yogurt on top. I try to keep rice ready in frig. Time to do another batch and some black beans with salsa; both mainstays.

I came back from Beaver with enough black beans to fill one of those gallon jars, of which I used to have one for each item we used, of that ilk! And a huge quantity of buckwheat flour at half the price it is here; from the bulk food store there. Two such in cottage country and none, that I have found, in Chateauguay; I have asked. There is one in the city - probably more than one! - st the famous Atwater Market. R goes to the market for cheeses. If I don't get back to Beaver soon enough, he could manage. Well, I need to find an effective way to store my goodies!   

Just came back from groceries. Cooked a nice BF this am; yesterday's porridge was inadequate. I have some almond flour I could throw in to improve the protein. Bought pineapple for buckwheat cakes. I am clearly not inspired to cook much! But a new batch of brownies is in order; the previous lasted about a month! I'll wait until the weather cools off again and do a stint with the oven.

Today is in the plus range and has rained some. The huge icecycles came crashing down this am! February thaw is messy but de-clutters considerably, making room for the next onslaught - in a couple days.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Feb 22 - 09:25 PM

Today's trip to Costco earlier in the day allowed me to pull up to a pump with no wait. It's not that there are lines at all gas stations, it's that there are lines at Costco because their gas is high quality but less expensive than "normal" stations. This is one of the most obvious sources of inflation.

Dorothy, I see storage containers of all sorts at the Goodwill stores I visit. Glass jars with lids, ceramic pots with the gasket and spring hinge thing, Tupperware, Rubbermaid, and more. Over the years I've brought home some good ones to swap out for other containers of dubious plastic (weeding out anything old enough to have BPA).


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Feb 22 - 01:50 PM

Here in the states my particular insurance company set it up so networked pharmacies could let us present our insurance card to buy 8 tests a month directly, without filing for reimbursement. This is a non-prescription use, so it's very rare. But no pharmacy I've tried so far is willing to take the card, they all say "corporate won't let us do it" and that we should buy the tests and file the paperwork. But that' against the spirit of the whole thing. I've posted a couple of Tweets, I probably need to add more hashtags and put it on Instagram also.

Meanwhile, I need to take my little garden tiller in to have the fuel lines changed (they leak). I can do this but it takes me so long and with an indifferent result. Must do it before the repair shop gets busy. I guess today is one for trying to fix things. (It's lovely out and about 70o.)

I ordered another pair of the really comfortable shoes I found a while back; I first found them in clearance at DSW, and I'd bought another pair on Amazon for about $60 for them; I was looking through my past Amazon purchases and saw that the same type from before was down to the last one and on sale for $38. Got 'em. These are my "walking around the museum with its really hard floors" shoes.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 11 Feb 22 - 05:48 PM

I haven't seen any sign of fuel shortages around here, but the prices are nuts -- approaching Cdn$1.50 per litre. (No, I don't know how much that is per gallon.) The last time I paid that much for gasoline, I was at Heathrow Airport.

Meanwhile, in another part of the forest, the premier of Ontario has declared a state of emergency over the truck protests, not just the occupation of Ottawa, but also blockades at the international bridges in Windsor and Sarnia. In Stratford, fresh food prices are stratospheric -- $2.49 a pound for apples! -- but I haven't seen any empty shelves, although certain items are inexplicably absent. One day it's lemons, another day it's store-brand laundry detergent.

It's been a hair under freezing and snowing heavily all day, but not for much longer. The forecast low for tonight is -19C and tomorrow's forecast high is only -7C, which means the air pressure is rising and the precipitation will go away. But the colder, drier weather will freeze the wet snow into lumps and bumps all over town, with a lovely slippery apron at the mouth of every scraped-out driveway. I plan to hike downtown tomorrow for a pub lunch with the bubble (BIL, SIL, and their lodger), so I'll need the hiking stick, the wool socks, the lined jeans and Edmund's army-issue fur hat, an outfit that makes me look like the Mad Trapper of Rat River. But I don't care -- no bad weather, only inadequate gear.

My back still hurts, but I'm now at the stage where exercise is the most important treatment. I went to pool class today and gave it my best, noting which parts, and which movements, still hurt the most. If I don't do anything nutty like fall down, walking is probably the best thing I can do for it now.

I actually dusted yesterday, and scrubbed all three toilets. Things are looking up.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Feb 22 - 07:10 PM

My small engine repair shop has closed! It was a one-man operation and it appears that he has retired. It looked so forlorn and empty, and a search online shows he thanked customers for nearly 40 years of business. I found another place that is a larger business, a mile or so closer in the other direction, and dropped off the equipment that needs work. Terrible parking lot, like the first place. They both seem to require backing into traffic. I'll have to approach from the side when I return to pick up stuff (Google maps shows they've taken over the next door building and I can park on the side of that place easily).

The main reason these tools have the fuel line problems is because of the ethanol in the gasoline. While at the shop I asked and was told about a place on the far west side of the county that sells non-ethanol gas. It's worth the trip and even the expense to keep the equipment running longer.

With the ice you describe, Charmion, I think I'd be tempted to wear a safety helmet while out walking. I lost a great aunt who slipped on ice and hit her head. (The news reported last week that comedian Bob Saget died of that kind of injury, though his heart was a ticking time bomb with a 95% blockage on one side.)

Dogs are demanding their dinner. I must do as requested or they'll be a royal pain. They're right on time - 6pm is dinner time for them. They started this at about 5:59pm.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Feb 22 - 10:15 AM

Welcome to Texas - the high yesterday was in the 70s with beautiful sunshine; today is an overcast high of 47 (two degrees from now) and a low overnight at 29. I was all set for shirt sleeves again but have put on another layer, and no yard work today. And I hear a brisk breeze through the woods across the road (they take on a life of their own in active weather).

I'm still working with the Essentrics DVDs I picked up to sample that program and in particular after yesterday's stretch felt really great. And I see that when she does the hip extension moves she adds in the IT Band stretches, just what I needed before.

Laundry done yesterday, dishes running this morning. A requests for masks came in, and I have some web content to work on. Time for a cuppa tea and to get to work.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 12 Feb 22 - 03:43 PM

Dupont:

ho ho: Today we have Charmion's weather of yesterday. But, after spending about half of yesterday on internet and phone trying to find my fav salsa, I went out early this am in hopes of getting to the large store while it was underpopulated - two phone calls to their office "No we don't" but finally found it on their shopping site - do not ask for the explicit item! Just "Salsa" and go through the $%^&*( choices! But a woman inside: no we cannot have someone bring it to you; you need a cart; Do you have a small one (Theirs are huge!) She kindly fetched me a small cart and directed me to the correct aisle where there was plenty! Put 9 jars in the cart and went back, looking helpless - the perks of looking OLD! She took me to a cash and helped me through it and I bundled up my salsa and came home - before the rain...!!!!!

Then I vacuumed first floor carpets and part way up the steps. R will need to take the vac upstairs so I can do up there.

Containers!! YEP! I have a few very nice ones at Beaver that I was thinking of taking back to a thrift shop. DUHHH! Next trip. In the meantime: found space in a drawer for a whole bunch of packets of "Indian" that already arrived.(Used part of one for lunch - hot!) And have yet to find a good space for 6 jars of salsa. I purchase herbs/spices at the bulk food in Bancroft, in small plastic bags - but larger than the jar in the cabinet so, tired of half full bags on top of things, I decided a beautiful pottery jar in the LR would do just fine. Because it is special, maybe I will remember!?! Maybe one of the none mouse proof drawers (DR) would hide the rest of the salsa! Flour and black beans are still homeless on K table...

Spent a long time responding to an email from special friend. Giving strong consideration to damp mopping the wood floors. Have I mentioned how much I love my new sink!!

Cooked rice without burning it! Just to have it on hand to go with black bean/salsa/corn mix or the veggie stew. Could consider making a new batch of brownies too. And bake a couple acorn squash at same time. And start a fire in stove now that temp is going back down.

DRISMAL out there!!

Oh darn - reading a post above- Reminder!! Still have not found the mysteriously missing cable. DO something!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Feb 22 - 10:14 AM

When I bake chicken or a chicken part (like the large leg quarter I baked last week) I retain the drippings with the meat to use later for soup or sauce. With one leg quarter (skin and bone and a little leftover meat) yesterday I decided to make a personal-sized batch of soup. I used a slow cooker (a base with a 1 quart cast iron enamel pot) so the chicken and drippings went into that with a little boiling water and sat for a couple of hours to cook into broth. I had the rest of an onion, part of a carrot, a little bit of celery that I gradually added. Egg noodles in with the diced potato and slow-cooked (very low simmer) some more; it was nice. There was just a little bit of chicken, it was mostly broth and vege.

It's the day I usually change the bedding, empty trash cans, generally get ready for the work week. Even retired it's still something I do on Sundays. Also on the list I need to vacuum the floor mats in the SUV and around the outside of the house I need to sweep up the lava sand I put down for the recent ice. If I make the move outside to sweep I may also start dragging the stacked dried garden dead plants back to the compost. It all depends on how warm the day; it's mostly sunny out there right now. Next week I should get the little tiller and weed whacker back, so from then on can decide when is a good time to turn over the soil for the next garden. It's a personal goal to get the garden equipment to the head of the repair line, in and out of the shop quickly. (Dorothy - I'm sure R does his own machine repairs; I have done so in the past but find I am the slowest repair person on the planet. It's done more efficiently and quickly if I pay an expert to do it.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 13 Feb 22 - 08:53 PM

Dupont:

Progress re sink: I managed to heat the formica off the wood backing - this was the cut out from the original sink. The R cut a piece to fill in the place where it had gotten badly messed up when he took out the old sink. Heat from the iron - I saw it on a This Old House youtube. Now, the sink is again in place and next time he will put a new plywood on the floor of the cabinet and the linoleum THEN I can put stuff back in!!

COLD outside so I put a fire in stove. Now ready to sleep... OH that project required a trip to the dollar store for glue so I did have an outing. It was sunny! Tried to sweep back deck but the sawdust sticks to the wood; maybe it will get drier.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Feb 22 - 10:42 AM

I missed a step in Dorothy's kitchen sink saga. Why is the Formica being heated and removed from the sink cutout piece from the counter (did I get that right?) Is a piece of the cutout being used as a patch next to the new sink? (Is the new sink smaller than the previous sink?)

We have a couple of lovely days. Let's see what I can manage to do with them. The to-do list is long.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 14 Feb 22 - 12:41 PM

Pool class and physio, check. My back is now much improved.

It’s almost Ottawa cold in Stratford today, and people are whining. I’m enjoying my down-filled coat.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion's brother Andrew
Date: 14 Feb 22 - 12:48 PM

Seasonal Schadenfreude.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 14 Feb 22 - 12:52 PM

Oohh, Kitchen sinks again...

Ours (some composite) has been in a terrible state for years. It's badly scratched and stained.

Trouble is (even if I could fit it), I don't see a straight drop in replacement and suspect a change would mean someone in to cut a new hole in a new work top as well as replacing the other couple of worktop boards to match.

We just live with it...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Feb 22 - 06:51 PM

Yeah, Jon, I know your feeling. The Formica seam a few inches over from the sink has warped open a little, but I'm not ready to replace a counter and a sink yet. There's no point in putting a new sink in a counter with one funky spot.

No big projects finished today. I found refills for the squeeze mop I like; I just installed the last one and ordered before the packaging info got lost. The model numbers seem to change every few years. I entered the UPC code to an online site and it found the correct model in their database, so that's a keeper and I downloaded it into the phone. Meanwhile, the recycling is in the back of the SUV but the village bins aren't emptied until tomorrow (and it would tough work to cram this stuff in now). For drama, I broke up a real dogfight between Cookie and Pepper, and saw Cookie start it. Time to spend more time walking them and being pack leader. I stopped this one with a broom (never grab fighting dogs!)

There is still the evening, but I think exercise and dog walking are the extent of my plans.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Feb 22 - 10:50 AM

I went out at dusk and pulled out the dead and now dry and easy to pull remaining stalks of peppers and okra, and gathered a couple of dried stacks of tomato limbs and piled it onto the tarp I use for dragging this around. These materials completely overtop the sides of the compost bin (because it's all dry and not compacted yet). Next time I have the steel-toed waffle-stomper boots on I'll step in and break up all of that stuff then run the sprinkler on top of it. There is a second compost structure, made of tall metal fence stakes supporting a plastic sided length of material that stands about 36" high and has nylon buttons to hold it in a loop around the posts. I'll lift that off of the compost inside (nothing new was added for a couple of years) and relocate the posts and siding for a new compost pile this year. Since that oldest pile is finished I'll use the tiller to break it up and then move the soil-like compost out to the gardens.

The weed whacker is finished and a call from the lawn and garden shop this morning informed me that the tiller needed new fuel lines and a new carburetor for about $160 in repairs. I asked them to JUST replace the fuel lines because I wasn't having any trouble with the carburetor. Is this the first test of this shop? We'll see when the tiller comes home. Two different repair guys on two different pieces of equipment, and I'll keep in mind which one to ask for next time. I really hate it when they think they can get away with too much work (or none at all and just charge for it) because a woman is the customer.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Feb 22 - 10:05 AM

Today.

Let's see what it brings. Why wait for the first day of the year to set goals? Why not today? It certainly seems to be a mistake to leave them till tomorrow.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 16 Feb 22 - 10:37 AM

Well I've set myself a new goal but it's a musical one. Something to try after a long while of doing very little.

Tune wise, before my attempts with tenor banjo and mandolin and Irish sessions, I had a short spell playing morris dance tunes with a D/G Hohner Erica melodeon. I've still got the Erica but as time went on, I grew less interested and the box is pretty well knackered now anyway.

I've still had an occasional interest in the boxes but fancied trying my hand at the B/C system which is very popular in Irish music. I had one brief play with this and a Double Ray I bought very cheaply but never got on with it and blamed the instrument for some of my struggles (it was sluggish and in need of work).

Anyway, good fortune and a generous mum have just provided me with a nice Salterelle Awen so I want to give B/C a better try this time.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 16 Feb 22 - 11:42 AM

Today the mid-February thaw has set in, with a forecast of temperatures well above freezing even at night. That means rain and slop, and of course winter is not over. Next week, sidewalks and parking lots will be covered with lumps of frozen slush. What larks.

At last, I have reached the bottom of the chest freezer. It lives in the garage, so I have to wait for warm weather -- probably around Easter -- to defrost it and give it a good scrub.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 16 Feb 22 - 10:18 PM

Dupont:

SRS: you got the sink part correct! It is good! One of these days R will get around to the fiddly task of cutting a piece of lino to fit the floor of the cupboard so I can put things back in!

Feb thaw! About that bread what has been frozen on the back deck ... It is now safely in the indoor freezers!! YAY!!

Been busy renewing acquaintance with an important friend of 50 years via emails. Went into shock at the passage of time, after my brain fog cleared and I was able to do the math. Back on track; a good track I think.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Feb 22 - 04:19 PM

Yesterday was lovely, today is wretched, a windy day that started at the day's high at midnight and is progressing to the mid-20s by midnight tonight.

As I drove home from museum scanning job I debated about a trip to the grocery store, involving another cold walk from and to from the SUV. The wind is cold enough to have me mentally cataloguing what I'd recently seen fresh in the fridge. I have enough vegetables and fruit and there is frozen chopped spinach and lots of frozen garden stuff. Today I finished the large Costco bag of fresh baby spinach before it started to rot, something that I rarely manage. It's a combination of being too slow to eat it OR storage in one of the really cold spots in the fridge that sometimes freezes part of the contents. Anyway, I figured I'd head home and eat what is here and not worry about topping off the supply. I can live without sweet potatoes and asparagus for a few more days. (Though the sooner I get a sweet potato, the better. I'll use one of the Beauregard ones for making slips for planting in the garden this year.)

Sewing this weekend, several projects. And after a hiatus I think I'll download another audiobook. They go well with sewing.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Feb 22 - 10:48 AM

The chocolate Labrador retriever is showing his age more this winter, but he still has a good appetite. I'm entering "watch the dog closely" mode to respond to his 14-year-old needs.

This week I've decided to kick out the junk food and to continue the strategic draw-down of food in the freezer and pantry. I made a batch of spaghetti sauce last night (splashing tomato around the kitchen and on myself) to keep a jar in the fridge and freeze the rest. It looks like the looming shortage we'll be dealing with is chicken, so next shopping trip I'll get some and freeze portions—I don't use that much meat these days. I usually bake a single breast or leg quarter and it goes for a couple of meals at least.

I'm still adding software to the rebuilt computer; last night I downloaded Adobe's DNG (Digital Negative) software, and it appears to be working. In the last build it didn't like my older version of Photoshop. That makes it easier to use the big Canon camera (and not just rely on my phone camera).


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 19 Feb 22 - 09:35 AM

Our mid-February thaw lasted precisely 24 hours followed by snow and more snow. In fact, it’s *still* snowing. The wind is blowing great billows of it down the street and the neighbours’ dog (not a small animal) is up to his armpits in their driveway. Neil-across-the-street will spend extensive quality time with his snowblower today and I am under house arrest until the Nick the plow guy comes.

So I might as well cook. I have a cabbage, a celery root, and a kilo of stewing lamb, so Norwegian lamb-and-cabbage stew is on the agenda. Pity I don’t have any bacon, but I’m not going out in THAT if I can possibly avoid it.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 19 Feb 22 - 12:26 PM

Dupont:

Charmion and I are having the same wonderful weather! Might go back above freezing an a couple days. LOTS of snow. And the snowblower?? maybe tomorrow? I'm not going anywhere no matter what we "need". I can barely stay awake.

Just cooked another small pot of rice - without burning it, more by luck than design. We agree the "better" salsa makes a big difference and was worth the effort of finding it! I have made room in the hall closet for the dozen bottles! More "extras" can go in there and de-clutter the pantry.

Had company yesterday: Rita and PUPPY! and her daughter and SonIL. The LR was bright with sun at the time! Daughter, a grad of Julliard, founded and is director of a org that provides free music lessons and instruments in NYC (all five boroughs). Over 150 kids with parental involvement required. opportunitymusicproject.org Great visit, esp the puppy!

Phoned #1 son last night - and got him! He sent pics of the beautiful lot on which they are hoping to someday have a small home, with lots of light on one of the highest points on Whidbey, with a view across the Sound to the Olympic Peninsula. The ever increasing price of building materials is daunting.

14 is a good age for a lab! You have done well, SRS! Many years ago we had a shepherd/collie mix live to 18; she was an only child (of our runty little shepherd) so we kept her; her mom took care of her until she died at 14. "Baby Dog" did not seem to miss her mom and decided to herd the farmer's cows in our "back yard". It's in the genes!

R left before BF so I made myself porridge with ground almonds and dried blueberries, and cinnamon, with plain yogurt. That was good. But now it is lunchtime...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Feb 22 - 12:57 PM

I called for a vet appointment partly by way of apology to the old Lab - I'd covered the dog door because he was out barking, but this time staying inside had him really distressed. I uncovered it when he wasn't going to settle down and go to sleep and realized later that I'd probably brought him in before he took care of business. Poor guy, and once again, reminding me that what I require (not barking at midnight) is not necessarily what he needs, so next week I'll ask about how to keep him comfortable.

About a week before Poppy passed away we were on a walk and she was so slow I returned to the house and let her in then walked the others; when we returned she was still sitting in the same spot. I felt bad - I probably shouldn't have tried the walk to begin with, but didn't know she was so close to the end. And I should have walked her into her bed when I brought her home. Reading what they need* and getting it right is a challenge.

The house is disorganized and there is a lot of paper that needs filing. It's time to start my income tax return and I need to mail my absentee ballot and hope it is accepted. These Texas GOP politicians are doing everything they can to reduce the turnout.






*If you reach the stage where you have to offer canned food, it is the end.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Feb 22 - 05:35 PM

I mailed my ballot, then someone piped up and said it should have two stamps. It didn't say it needed two stamps, so we'll see what happens. (There was a long panel of barely legible print down the left side of the envelope front and I didn't read it. I glanced at it and thought it had to do with how to deliver your ballot to the county, in person, drop box, but no one else can deliver your ballot crap.) If I look up my ballot online and it doesn't show as returned and accepted by election day I can go vote in person.

I'm going to attempt pressure-cooking beets again, this time staying in the kitchen during the whole 18 minutes run. Last time the weight must not have seated properly and it dried out and scorched. This is part of my "eat a lot of colors" diet that I've been on since last fall. With that last beet setback I've avoided them for a while (and when I looked in the store I didn't find canned beets. I should have tried a bigger store; Aldi doesn't carry the whole rainbow of foods.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 21 Feb 22 - 11:01 AM

"Family Day" in Ontario, a recently established provincial holiday that features patchy availability of goods and services. A fair few people don't really believe in it, notably us Olde Phartes who grew up without a statutory holiday between New Year and Easter. The groundhog, St. Valentine and St. Patrick still have more pull with most of us.

The snow has stopped (for now) and we're having another bit of thaw -- high of 7C and sunny today, high of 11C tomorrow and rain. Before the rain starts, I shall unwind the Christmas lights off the mulberry tree and maybe take a little stroll downtown.

Beets are excellent roasted, Stilly, especially if you give them a light coat of olive oil and a good dose of garlic and thyme along with the S&P. I've never bothered pressure-cooking them; like potatoes and carrots, I cut them up and just boil them in a saucepan.

Supper today will be the third round of Norwegian braised lamb and cabbage, and it's definitely better with time in the fridge. I made it in Edmund's enormous cast-iron skillet, the only pan in the house that accommodates an entire cabbage as well as the lamb and celeriac. That's the first time I've had that brute of thing on the stove since Edmund died, but I hadn't forgotten just how awkward it is, mostly because it has only one handle. Nowadays, most large skillets also have a "helper" handle on the opposite side for cooks who do not have hands like back-hoe shovels.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Feb 22 - 11:15 AM

I have one of those large cast iron skillets with a cast iron lid. It came from my great aunt's house where a friend was helping me with the estate. When she saw that she said "you have to keep that, it's great for frying chicken!" I rarely fry chicken (I can count on one hand the number of times I can remember making fried chicken) but it is good for other things. And yes, very heavy.

I've started using the pressure cooker because it's here, and it really is much faster than boiling beets till tender. Once they're cooked, peel and slice. I'm trying to use the various pieces of cooking equipment that have been stashed in the pantry to see if I want to keep them or not.

Another dose of wintry weather is headed here after a warm start to the week (it should reach 80o today.) I don't believe this is a named storm. But wait! I just pulled up the forecast - they've named it "Oaklee." [sigh] I will finish my running around today and plan to hunker down the rest of the week if need be. I have appointments on Wednesday and Thursday that I'd like to keep, so we'll see if it's just cold as can be or if it precipitates and makes travel dangerous. I think we're at the bottom edge of a southwest-to-northeast-oriented storm predicted to form overnight.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Feb 22 - 06:33 PM

One 75-pound chocolate Labrador retriever has been bathed. The dog, the bathroom, and I are all a bit moist. He looks good and didn't seem too upset about it (it has been a long time since he had a bath.) I'm not doing the others today, I'll stager this chore over a couple of more weeks.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Feb 22 - 10:20 AM

It seems that a clean dog is a happy dog—Zeke has been quite frisky since last night, and his coat is so soft today. He regularly requests cuddles anyway, but they're easier to give when you don't have to wash your hands after a back scratch and an ear rub.

More mud in the den this morning, tracked in after a gentle overnight rain. Combine this with the short dried out Bermuda grass beyond the patio that clings to their coats any time someone rolls and you have the makings for adobe bricks coming in on their feet and coats. Spring will relieve this, but we're weeks away yet. At least with snow all of that is out of the way for now (though yes, I know about the consistency of mud after a thaw.) A modern-day version of the Housewife's Lament. (The thing I will never forgive my mother for is she finished her family genealogy and mailed it out to 70 family members. I got my copy and instead of listing me as a park ranger, a forester, an interpretive naturalist, or a writer - she said I was "a housewife" because at the time I was raising kids and doing freelance writing. Something I never in a million years would have used, and I confronted her about it, I even sent her sheets of stamps so she could mail out the corrected version. She died before she got to it.) #rant off


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 23 Feb 22 - 09:21 AM

Isobel is due at the vet in 25 minutes. Getting her into the carrier is a stealth mission; at the critical moment, I put the habeas grabbus on her slumbering form (currently on my lap) and drop her in. The hitch is always maintaining my grip between the comfy chair and the carrier, which sits on the parlour floor over by the window, for Isobel is at one with that 19th-century naval officer who declined to surrender because he had only just begun to fight.

Here goes nuttin’ …


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 23 Feb 22 - 09:47 AM

Back when we had cats (I’m assuming your creature is a cat), we had a good plastic coated steel wire framed cage for at least 10 years and may still have it in a shed. I don’t remember getting any of ours into this as being a problem and it was easy enough to close the lid and push the “bolt” back in place. It was much better than the flimsy plasticy things we'd had before. Their reaction to being in there did vary though as did their response to being driven in the car. I would sometimes go with mum to the vets just as a passenger to try to help keep at calm.

I wasn’t involved in this one (a brother helped with that) but mum’s journey here when she moved from N Wales (W coast UK) to Norfolk (E coast) would have been a bit more interesting. I think there would have been 1 (or 2?) cats, 1 dog and at least 4 chickens in her car.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Feb 22 - 10:28 AM

Pet week in the Declutter thread! I take Zeke to the vet tomorrow. He's ok with the ride and compliant about the SUV, but with his arthritis I'll have to do some major lifting to get him in - the body is willing but the back end doesn't cooperate well. And I took that side step off a few months ago, making it much easier for me but much more difficult for him.

There's a very thin coat of freezing drizzle on the ground this morning. I have an appointment at 11 and I'll leave early enough to drive there in slow motion (if need be) on well-travelled streets so it will hopefully be worn off. Tomorrow's appointment with Zeke may end up postponed if there is more accumulation. And the first thing I encounter on my route out of the village will be The "bridges freeze sooner than roadways" at the bottom of my street. That's the test - turn around and go home or continue onward.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 23 Feb 22 - 01:50 PM

Isobel is, indeed, a cat, and a very intelligent one, as cats go. We have returned from the vet’s office and she is back in my lap, having evidently put this morning’s adventure behind her.

Snowing again, after two days of thaw. Still February.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Feb 22 - 03:04 PM

The vet called, Zeke's appointment was cancelled due to tomorrow's forecast, but reading the last couple of posts reminds me that I have a sturdy plastic step stool that I could use to get him into the car and take it along for the vet parking lot end of things as well. (I recently read Virginia Tam's Facebook remarks about using a stool like that for getting into her "caravan" - aka "trailer").

I wonder if the cat's rapid forgetting about the morning adventure has to do with how tempting it is to sit in a warm lap on a cold day?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 23 Feb 22 - 05:30 PM

Isobel is all about household routine, and enforcing it. In the early afternoon I’m usually reading, and when I’m reading Isobel is in my lap. Simple.

Isobel never pokes her nose outside voluntarily, so the weather makes no difference to her.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Feb 22 - 11:02 PM

Skipping the stretching workout, I'll do a gentle Hinge Health routine before bed to give today's steroid shot time to kick in. I'm not going through the whole process of holding off knee replacement like last time. Steroids worked for a while, gel shots were never very very helpful. This summer I'll have the second knee done and look forward to moving forward with two functioning knees. Until then, continuing to get the leg muscles into good shape, losing weight, and preparing for about three weeks of extreme inconvenience with gear and schedules.

Lots of paper needs filing or shredding. The sewing studio is set up for more mask making, and I'm remembering how to do the projects that I haven't working on much for several months. I've made hundreds of masks so it will come back to me. Muddy footprints need mopping (with the newly replaced mop sponge) and Cookie's jacket needs expansion. I should have bought her a new one when it was warm but I forgot.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 24 Feb 22 - 03:52 AM

I got the 3D printer going for the first time in a while yesterday and had some fun getting things working. The main problem was that I failed to notice I’d not clipped the glass plate back correctly the last time I used the printer. Anyway, all’s working now.

The task was a simple one. Mum has been loosing her diary and address books regularly. Part of the problem is that she uses these in both the study and living room and things get put down en route to her chairs as well as getting buried under other papers and books.

The attempted solution I came up with was to get her a A4 Portable Bag File Holder and ask her to make sure the books (and possibly other things she might need) have the bag as their home. The printer was used for a simple hook to clamp to one side of her trolley and for her bag to hang on.

Not much else happening here except I've ordered (and already have a couple of items) veg things to grow.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Feb 22 - 07:43 AM

Jon, you do get a lot of use from that 3D printer! That kind of bag is handy - I bought one for my son for his sheet music when he was taking guitar. I tried to set up a system for a brain-injury friend who kept losing things. Large bright orange melmac bowls for the kitchen island and on her dresser. Put keys and hearing aid batteries, etc. there when finished. Trouble was, a lot of family came through to visit and put things on top of them or moved them to use for something else. #Fail

Years ago I put in a programmable thermostat and since I was heading out to work I programmed it so it would warm the house up to 70o at about 5:30am. Then it dropped back to 68, and for the hours I was usually absent, down to 62. Up to 68 in the evening, then 62 for overnight. I retired three years ago and never changed it.

I now think that the heater blower is what clues Pepper to "it's time!" to head out for the treat from the neighbor. He rises early and heads out at dawn with biscuits for the dogs. So with a super cold spell the furnace went on at 3am and she was out in the yard and barking, with the other two in tow. I called them in, covered the door, and they fussed and barked and I let them out again, repeat. I got a couple of hours sleep last night.

While lying in bed I used the phone app to program the smart light in the living room and to turn on for five minutes at dawn, and will see about setting an alarm on Alexa to announce they should go to the fence for their treats. I need to figure out how that light knows when dawn is.

Today - two snow day projects in the hall. I have batteries to change out in that thermostat, then reprogram it. And I'll start on the hall doorbell chime and the adjoining transformer so I can put up the new wired video doorbell.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Mrrzy
Date: 24 Feb 22 - 11:27 AM

Got down to desktop, and dusted same! No longer does my laplop linger amongst random papers not even in piles! Papers organized, even, not just piled elsewhere. A win.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 24 Feb 22 - 11:30 AM

It's a beautiful day in the neighbourhood! Sunshine, not too cold, birds in the hedge singing their little heads off. Lately I've been seeing chickadee-shaped critters that are not chickadees, and gleanings from the Google rabbit hole suggest they are dark-eyed juncos.

I think it's time to get off the choir's board of directors; those meetings don't spark even one tiny bit of joy. I'll do it in the proper way, though, and be sweet and reasonable about it. Then I can just sing and be done with it.

I went to my usual pool class today and will go again tomorrow. On Saturday, I plan to try a different kind of water exercise, something called Aqua Zumba. I just hope it's not loud.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Feb 22 - 04:46 PM

Mrrzy, I stopped by the post office last week and the box was crammed (I hadn't been there for a couple of weeks). I've been sorting junk from bills at the kitchen table, and there is a small crescent-shaped area in the clutter where I can put my plate, glass of water, and the phone stand (I eat alone, so I catch up with Instagram or read the online newspaper.) It is time to clear several horizontal surfaces of their paper buildup.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 24 Feb 22 - 06:18 PM

What was it that wore out your knees somewhat prematurely Stilly?
While there is an autoimmune factor in many joint problems there are also auto healing processes.
You will not find my advocating visualization for disease and illness despite the fact I was a therapeutic hypnotist. People must find their own path to mind body healing. I never cured my own migraine condition of weekly migraine torture so I know limitations exist. That migraine has preditably disappeared with age I have no illusions but all other conditions have healed nicely, some might say remarkably.
With your learning curve behind you I hope your second procedure if you decide goes really well.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Feb 22 - 06:41 PM

Don, the doctor said he usually waits for the patient to tell him when they're ready for the procedure. It isn't like heart or gallbladder or cancer surgery or other things that must be done, it is elective, but it is a huge quality of life choice. If I step wrong I can almost topple over; it's an instant collapse when you move wrong when exercising, dancing, climbing around the yard, etc. Walking on uneven ground or climbing stairs is painful and you can hear the bones grind (the noise travels through the skeleton, and I think someone other than me could hear it if they were nearby.) It's a hard surgery so it isn't taken lightly.

I wore my knees out the old-fashioned way—hard work. In high school I took up mountain climbing, going up and down mountains wearing a heavy backpack (down is usually harder on your knees than up), and then there was all of the long-distance backpacking with even heavier packs. I spent several years working in forestry climbing through clearcut units and fighting forest fires (carrying a lot of gear). I've been gardening for years, doing a lot of digging and lifting and dragging and carrying of heavy objects. The cartilage is gone, it's bone on bone and my knees are knock kneed (only one of them now). Standing with deteriorated knees mean your legs aren't straight, they meet at the knees.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Feb 22 - 11:09 AM

The steroid shot to the knee socket helped a lot. I'll be out in the yard this weekend doing some work on uneven ground without the usual discomfort. I had the trimmer and the tiller worked on last week and I need to test them within 30 days (the length they guarantee their work.) So I need to make a run over to the gas station that sells unadulterated gasoline (no ethanol). Home Depot for a new gas can, then to the next county over, where I'm told there's a Walmart gas station that sells it.

I've been getting a lot more stuff done since that shot. I didn't realize how much the knee was slowing me down. Of course, it didn't affect the filing of paper, the cleaning of the kitchen, etc. I think the now-sunny weather has helped with my mood.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 25 Feb 22 - 02:10 PM

I’ve had way too much smoke alarm drama lately, and last night the fire brigade showed up. After much twiddling and three trips to Canadian Tire in a snowstorm for batteries (two kinds!), calm has returned.

The firemen were nice, and very helpful. They even offered to come back and change the batteries in the three — count ‘em, three! — alarms on the upstairs hall ceiling if I didn’t want to climb a ladder. I probably reminded the crew chief of his mum.

I’m glad the steroid shot is helping you, Stilly. One of my several sisters-in-law is nearly crippled by a bum knee and so far has found nothing that helps. She had one injection into the joint that absolutely nothing — a gel shot, perhaps — and I’ve been nudging her to ask about cortisone for a while. It has done a world of good for my wonky foot.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Feb 22 - 02:50 PM

Wow! Smoke detectors are a huge help and also a tremendous challenge (especially when they start beeping at 3am and you can't tell which one it is. I have 5 through the house.) And I always find that while the batteries come out easily, they are a bugger to put back in.

Gel injections in the knee never worked very well, so I'm not bothering with it. This one steroid shot is just to help me get to the time of year when it's easier to go through the surgery. When you can choose, it's nice to be able to. (After going through the third trimester of my first pregnancy in a hot Texas summer, we timed the second one to be born in the spring. Much easier on me.) They don't like to keep doing the steroids, so at some point the surgery becomes the only option. The repaired knee is so much better.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Feb 22 - 11:58 AM

I'm pacing my news consumption; the assault on Ukraine is a wretched state of events and the best I can do here is watch for good NGOs that might be able to help as far as making donations. Add to that donations to politicians in some of the battleground states. My Congressmember was part of a GOP junket to Russia in 2018 at the very moment the senate was releasing the report that Russia did indeed interfere with the US elections. That group was there to suggest "we don't mind what you did." She needs to retire, and I'd like to help with that.

Last night I worked on more masks (the CDC is now watching hospital capacity as a way to tell people if they should mask or not - I prefer not to get sick and hope I don't end up sick OR hospitalized.) I started a new fabric for my library friends—the print looks like the marbled end paper you see in tipped into old books (or printed in some newer ones.)

Today is still cool but mid-week it'll be up to the 70s and I'll head outside to move a plastic sided compost enclosure in the back yard to start a new enclosure for weeds and kitchen waste. I always struggle to make the piles dog proof, and this time I'll probably make some kind of a wire mesh cap to go over it. It's the time of year to start pulling out the dormant Bermudagrass, a persistent weed that pulls out of the soil most easily after a freeze and rain (our circumstances this week). That weedy grass will go in the bottom of the new bin and I'll empty the kitchen waste buckets into it. It's a messy job but adds up to good compost. The pile that is inside the current bin location isn't of interest to the dogs, being a couple of years old. I'll start breaking it up probably next year (at any given time there are usually four piles in various stages of decomposition, with a new one started each spring.)

Decluttering jigsaw puzzles this week when I'll be headed to my old work town and drop them at the thrift store where I discovered a good supply.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 27 Feb 22 - 05:19 PM

I took a trip to the nearest Big Smoke today to visit Lee Valley Tools, and found a festival of drifting snow on the county roads. Ugly. In town, it was a fine clear afternoon, but the minute I was on a road with billiard-table-flat fields to windward, conditions promptly soured. Such is life in southwestern Ontario. No ditch for me today. Hurrah.

The news from east Europe is unremittingly depressing and so full of speculation that I have stopped reading it. My social media feed is dominated by military indignation from every Cold War veteran of my acquaintance, most of them saying something like “I told you so!” If anything good happens, I’ll find out soon enough. If anything worse happens, ditto. Either way, there’s not much I can do about it.

Capacity limits, social distancing and proof-of-vaccination requirements go away next week in Ontario, but masking stays for now. In hope of better things to come, I have registered and paid for a music festival in August. The glass is half full!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion's brother Andrew
Date: 27 Feb 22 - 05:40 PM

Your brothers, nevertheless, remain silent on the subject on social media. (We do, however, have opinions.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 Feb 22 - 04:50 PM

It's a busy week ahead, with generally nice weather. Coming up is the one month when, in three years out of four, if you forget to flip the page of the calendar the dates are still correct. Daylight savings time in two weeks does the awful "spring ahead" to remove an hour that I miss for months until fall comes around again. I feel cheated.

There's a lot going on since my plate is full with self-assigned projects. If I manage to do some of these I just might lose weight from the energy expended alone. With the exercises and stretching there are muscles under the fat, but it is harder to do a lot of stuff when carrying the extra weight. So, in a nutshell, the spring is dedicated toward getting in better shape and losing weight while working on household projects so when I get to the knee surgery things are running smoothly around here and missing two or three weeks of regular activity won't put me behind. Toward this end, a couple of weeks ago I cut out the chocolate and much of the sugar and it takes a while to get past the cravings, but I think I'm about there.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 02 Mar 22 - 11:23 AM

It's Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent.

I have deeply mixed feelings about organized religion, but some of its aspects are very helpful in daily life. Top of the list is the traditional Christian calendar, and I'm confident that Jews and Muslims and Hindus and Zoroastrians every other faith group that does holidays would agree. At bottom, Lent is forty days set aside to figure out where and how we are failing to do right, and to correct our behaviour and, thereby, our thinking.

There's a thousand ways to use it, from resolving to eat better and clean the house (and then bloody well doing it) to weekly attendance at Stations of the Cross and hefty alms-giving. Some people swear off their guilty pleasures (giving up booze and chocolate, for example), others go back to the gym in anticipation of bathing-suit season, and still others do something more intellectual to achieve self-improvement in anticipation of Spring.

As a PK (preacher's kid), Edmund always marked Lent with giving stuff up, usually booze and sweets. One year, he tried to give up meat and actually made it to Laetare Sunday (the third Sunday in Lent) before caving in to the temptation of double-smoked bacon. He felt personally burdened by the fact that his birthday always fell squarely in the middle of Lent, making timely celebration awkward.

I'm not giving up booze or chocolate or meat, and I'm not planning to become a frequent flyer at Stations of the Cross. I think I'll give up procrastination, especially with respect to boring jobs I loathe, such as washing the kitchen floor and vacuuming the parlour rug, and responsibilities that bug me, such as choir administration. Of course, I give up procrastination every year and so far it hasn't quite taken, but I live in hope.

It's a beautiful day in Stratford with bright sunshine despite predictions of foul weather from Environment Canada. I think I'll have lunch and go for a walk downtown.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 02 Mar 22 - 11:46 AM

I am resolving to eat butter and hire other people to clean better than we ever could. As far as religious mixed feelings I am betting religion
has as much corruption and lies as your typical go fund me page. Much good will be done but there will be a bunch of crap too.

Its time for the second dose of food coloring for the blooming trees experiment. I am removing a pink shrubbery and replacing it with a red or orange azelea. Cutting down all unwanted brush and mulching with red pine is also in the cards.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Mar 22 - 02:01 PM

As a child I had friends in a family in the neighborhood who were ardently Catholic, who used to tell us regularly we would go to Hell. I don't remember a conversation with my parents, but I suspect there was one, in which we were told that their religion dictated rules to them and we didn't need to participate in their fiction. That conversation would have been with my father, a lapsed Catholic. Mom was nominally a Lutheran and tried to teach us about the religion by making us go to Sunday school, but after a couple of years of that we were able to talk our way out of it. I don't pray or pledge allegiance at public meetings either.

Decluttering accounts these days; the newspaper I get is digital only and I paid an annual fee of $118, but got a postcard stating that was discontinued and they would charge me a monthly $18.72 now, or a $110 increase per year. I. Don't. Think. So. I called to cancel and amazingly they can offer a rate of $8.62 a month, coming out less than before. I'll keep it for a couple of months, but I don't need it. I also canceled the DVD part of my Netflix plan; I never remember to watch the darned things, so I might as well stop getting them. I can add it back later if I want - they'll always happily take my money. There are a couple of other things I need to revisit as far as keeping or tossing - after a while these things add up.

Five puzzles dropped at the thrift shop, and I brought home two. 500 pieces this time (there was a double-sided one I didn't buy - that's for the hard-core gluttons for punishment.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Mar 22 - 11:12 PM

There's a huge gap because of a database failure. I printed the thread and will put up some long posts with the text. Not every thread got hit the same way.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: keberoxu
Date: 03 Mar 22 - 11:25 PM

I was beginning to fear that
we would have to give up the Mudcat for Lent ...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Mar 22 - 12:14 AM

Maybe not. It looks like the longer threads took longer to load. Keep your fingers crossed.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Mar 22 - 11:05 AM

The big worry lately has been the health of the old Labrador retriever, but aside from being deaf, forgetful, and lumpy (harmless fatty tumors), he's in good shape. The blood work shows a slight shift toward kidney problems in the future but that can be headed off with a low protein diet, that he's already on (it can go lower with an expensive Rx dog food, but the vet said that isn't needed now.)

I found what could be a major source of clutter (if I'm not careful) - a new online site for ordering sewing materials, all sorts. Wawak. And they mail out catalogs every month. Those catalogs will be the start. It looks like they have all of the good stuff that used to be in the big old fabric stores (those older big ones even before Hancock, that finally closed down in our area, leaving Joann's the last woman standing). AND I've responded to a freecycle offer of two trash bags full of yarn (I don't need the yarn, but my daughter expressed an interest in yarn recently, for the crochet squares she makes during meetings, etc.) If the offeror responds to my email, this porch-pickup may come under the heading of "be careful what you wish for." We've made contact, now all I need is the address, from the crossroads listed she lives a mile from me. If I do this right I can drive over to the museum where my daughter will be working tomorrow and meet her at her car to drop these off.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 04 Mar 22 - 06:12 PM

A pampered dog with gout?

Binge watching Netflix isn't a fitness program.
None the less I have been highly entertained by comedies like 'The Good Place', 'Lilyhammer' (for Sopranos fans) and 'Upload' on Amazon Prime video.

With a near 80 degree Sunday I plan the yard clean up work.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Mar 22 - 10:03 PM

He is a very good boy who gets a good diet and will now lose a little weight (I'll disguise the fact that there is less dog food in the dinner bowl by adding a little more vege - that way he gets less protein and gets the fiber that everyone needs.) I cut 1/2 inch slices of zucchini and steamed them this evening - Pepper was less happy with the raw squash yesterday but gobbled this down immediately. When they think they're getting people food they are always thrilled.

Time to poke around in a trunk in the front room looking for a couple of things to ship to my son. I'm going to have to move stuff from the top of the trunk before opening it - I'll look at this as my second workout of the day (and before I start moving I'll put on a mask and dust.)

Charmion, I hesitate to pull a Keberoxu-style awkward moment here, but it has occurred to me lately that one of the most annoying things about totalling the last car is that you'd just performed a very expensive repair on the broken antenna. Was there any adjustment in the insurance company payment that helped ease that pain?

Dorothy, I've lost track of your comings and goings - Dupont vs Beaver. Where are you these days, and do you ever get to other locations like the Mill?

Are there any lurkers who would like to surface and give us a progress report? Those who read along and rarely post sometimes offer the most amazing accounts of their activities!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: keberoxu
Date: 13 Mar 22 - 09:17 PM

I saw on the Mudcat Facebook page that
Wysiwyg is doing some online fund-raising.


...could not remember how to spell wysiwyg for a moment there ...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Mar 22 - 10:16 PM

Help Susan Hinton get a Power Chair is the post that she put up. Better over here on Mudcat where more people know her. I'll look for the thread about "where is WYSIWYG" and add it there also.

While Mudcat was off there was other stuff going on in the world that needed attention. Today I finished preparing a couple of boxes to send out tomorrow, things on my "to-do" list for a while. My income tax files are on the kitchen table ready to begin and hopefully file this week.

Beside the front corner of the garage the hole is ready for concrete and the gate support post, I'll put that in tomorrow. From there I can plan the gate closing post and short stretch of fence from that post over to the property line. I should be able to finish the project this week. One more fence post to put in, a concrete curb across the gate opening (to keep dog-like critters from digging under it), and a dozen pickets. Th e dogs will have a great view of the driveway from that gate and I'm sure enjoy discovering it.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Mar 22 - 05:14 PM

A friend will be staying a couple of days; the original plan was she'd stay with her daughter and spend Friday with me and my ex, but as is typical with this friend, her family's plans change. People had COVID the last time she tried (we didn't see her then); this time it's upper bronchial. Ugg. Anyway, I'll be making the bed in the guest room and scrambling to sweep and dust and put stuff away around here. When company is coming is when you can suddenly see your house through someone else's eyes. And this one right now is messy. Fingers crossed she doesn't bring the daughter's cold to us here.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Mar 22 - 09:20 PM

I was looking for the top of my pan-shaped food mill for the last couple of days, and finally realized I'd put it away with the other food mill (that screws onto the edge of the counter and has a lot of parts). Duh. I had them both out last week and wasn't paying attention when I put the big one in the box, except that there are so many parts and I don't want to lose any. I thought I was losing my mind that I couldn't find that thing until now.

I'm still trying to sort the seeds from the frozen tomatoes for making some sauce, and processing cold tomatoes didn't work to separate them. This summer I'm going to make a lot more sauce at the time I'm first processing tomatoes, that's when it works best.

Since I was downtown today I made a trip over to my favorite discount gourmet warehouse and they had a batch of dessert hand pies in the freezer (along with produce and yogurt I load up on there). These pies are just chocolate; the last ones were chocolate hazelnut and were amazing, and worth the trip. I am reducing my driving by making loops, so this was one of those, a three-legged trip out. (That will be blown out of the water when my friend arrives and needs to be ferried all around town for a couple of days. I'll go back to the plan next week.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Mar 22 - 12:06 AM

Well I've managed to declutter my freezer of 8 1-pint plastic restaurant containers ("poor man's Tupperware") of chopped tomatoes from last summer. There will be a fair amount of juice and some sauce on the side. Cooking the tomatoes then hitting them with the stick blender before spooning through the food mill is what it took to get the start of the sauce. It needs to cook till thickened some more, then I'll add the seasoning.

The sink is full of the pans and food mill, soaking, and I'll wash it up tomorrow. If my friend likes onion soup then I'll make some of that for lunch or dinner while she's here, thereby removing a frozen baguette that I can slice and toast for the croutons for the soup. More out of the freezer—meals this time of year are about drawing down existing supplies of preserved stuff (and of eating fresh as well - it's a juggling act.) This sauce is in lieu of buying a jar or two, and I can use it on ravioli and flat bread (for homemade pizza) from the freezer. There are fewer take-out meals when thoughts turn to finishing last year's crops in time to fill it with this year's produce excess.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 16 Mar 22 - 12:46 PM

Be sure to buy plum toms, not just chopped, Jon, and ones with salt or anything else added are best avoided, I've found. I'm not keen on Napolina ones (not quite the Italian company you might think!). Cirio are OK (and I use their passata quite a lot), but they are no better than the Waitrose ones and are more expensive. All a matter of taste! Whatever else, I've noticed that prices of such stuff are seriously on the up...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Mar 22 - 02:18 PM

Though we talk about food here, this isn't a recipe thread, and you should probably continue the discussion over to the food threads. I've moved a couple of them over now just to revive that thread. You were building up quite a head of steam. ;)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Mar 22 - 04:03 PM

The house still needs a good sweep and a couple of floors need mopping; I'll do that after I finish a web page fix that I'm addressing. When it rains it pours - my quiet week has suddenly filled up with things that must be done now. This is spring break around here, so the museums fill up with families out doing things during their week off. I took the rest of the week off to stay out from underfoot. I should be able to finish making the sauce (cooking up the sofrito part then adding it to the thickened tomato sauce) and have it ready for tomorrow. My fridge is embarrassingly full for a house where just one person lives. It's a lot of things that keep well and others that are coming out of the freezer to use.

Though wait - it isn't just me. I'm giving the dogs more produce mixed with their dry kibble. There is a five-pound bag of carrots to roast (a few at a time) that I enjoy but I also give to them, and they get the tough ends from the asparagus, etc. One of the dogs is on a diet so he's getting more veg, less dry (also because he needs less protein in his food).


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 16 Mar 22 - 06:19 PM

Dupont:

That was a long hiatus! Not that I have managed to do much. I did try walking to the river and back (about 400 yards), times 2 and that worked for 3 days then my gut protested vigorously - I suspect the stew in which I used a jar of commercial spaghetti sauce. Won't do that again! So I only walked about 50 feet back and forth by the house - just in case!

Today, a gorgeous day! I walked down to the boat launch and sat on a bench by the river and then walked back. YAY! Enough snow gone that I could get to the bench. The ice is decluttering but slowly - about 10 inch thick chunks all higeldy, pigeldy (!) across the river. Open water down river! Sat on the front steps with the sun full on and ate a salad and read. And, just now another walk to the bench. This time I did not need to stop 3 times to rest on the way up the very minor hill.

Yesterday, in an effort to do something useful, I cleaned the oak bannister with Murphy's oil soap. Some of it looks better. And it is no longer tacky. It did not help my interminably achey right shoulder!

BIG social event on Sunday - Farmer's Market! And R took the day off so we could go together and visit with friends (with masks). And BF in a small resto. Big purchase: beets, turnips and mushrooms from the coop (farm). My second event since the Covid hit.

The previous one put me in collapse for a couple days: I went to a play in the city on 5 March. R was working so it was up to me to get there, to be supportive of my friend who was in it and heavily involved. I studied the map of that part of the city over and over to be sure I knew how to get there and see where there was parking.

Right! I got there just fine! YAY for me! And parked right outside the theatre, on the street! and looked for kiosk to pay. Asking people whom I knew were Francophones in that part of the city! No help. By the time I found the obscure door to the theatre, I was exhausted from walking around in the slush - fell once. (later realized I had pulled a muscle in my neck - a few days healing)

Inside, I lamented loudly: "How can I pay for parking???" A nice woman asked me my parking spot number and paid on her phone and I gave her cash. YAY! Then... I could not pay for a ticket! There was no way to pay except on line??? Stunned and confused, "But Justine told me I could get a ticket at the door!" A woman led me through halls, up and down steps until we found Justine, who greeted me effusively and thanked me for coming and Gabrielle led me through some more labyrinth to the theatre and carefully got me seated - I was shaking with exhaustion.

But that was not enough: R texted me that he was there! and I told Gabrielle, who was nearby. He also had no way to pay and had to tell them, "But Justine told my girlfriend..." And G brought him in one minute before the show started.

It was wonderful: excellent musicians and singing and acting -100% in French! I understood two words and R understood "about 15%" but the spirit was beautiful. The words did not matter. And when Justine came to thank us for coming, we were able to be very enthusiastic about how terrific it was!! We went for a bite to eat at the Atwater Market(lovely sort of spanokapita) and I dropped him back at work. Three days to recover. But I DID it!! And I am so glad I did; it was vitally important to me to be supportive of Justine.

NOW: the upshot is that I must find out how to be able to pay with my phone. I felt SO incompetent! And VERY OLD!

The walks are already helping. I need to vacuum. But laundry is OK, dishes are ok, groceries are fine, and I find little things to organize better and other things to recycle.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 17 Mar 22 - 10:50 AM

I heard a redwing blackbird outside the doc's office in Kitchener when I went for my needle last week. Since that infallible sign of spring, we've had four days of snow and wind and two days of thaw. A neighbour reported seeing and hearing robins yesterday. I'm planning to walk downtown today for a beer with the BIL & SIL, so I hope to spot one myself.

The house is a little less grimy since I finally hauled the vacuum cleaner downstairs for a go at the parlour rug. The garden is a mess as the snow comes off, but all my mould allergies are going gangbusters so it will have to wait.

The first daffs are sprouting ... !


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 17 Mar 22 - 03:10 PM

A few daffodils and jack in the pulpits are blooming. I did a living room makeover with an illuminated remote controled coffee table, a powerful led room light, moon mirror, a music quilt 'tapestry', and an earth and a moon pillow.
Added red food color to the forsythia which has just begun to bloom.
I'm hoping for an orange forsythia.
I cut down a huge pink flowering bush to replace with red azelea. I'm on the lookout for a red rhododendrom.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Apr 22 - 09:43 PM

Almost a month of posts have vanished, making it difficult to keep up with what people have been doing. The BS section of Mudcat is non-essential, but there's a family connection of sorts. And it's a place where I edit myself to try to make what I'm sharing interesting. So it is a loss, to have those entries gone.

I wish I had something interesting to add this evening, but I've spent the time completing my income taxes. I owed a tiny amount this year.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Apr 22 - 05:13 PM

It was a pleasant surprise after sending in my taxes to find an automated email from the IRS rejecting the first attempt, saying I hadn't taken the correct standard deduction. When I plugged in the larger number the tables were turned and they will be sending a modest refund. Possibly. I thought so last year but they whittled it down to almost nothing after catching a math error.

In the new gap of weeks since mid-March I have started an exercise program and this weekend rearranged my bedroom to give more space and to put down a free piece of carpet I found in my "purchase nothing" group on Facebook. I will head out soon to pick up a non-skid mat to put under it because it sits on tile and can slide.

I finished putting in a new gate and am considering how to put shade cloth over the new potting bench that I've assigned to a three-sided area created when I finished the gate project. It gets merciless midday sun so some shade cloth attached to the fence to pull over the bench is the plan.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 12 Apr 22 - 05:14 PM

Dupont:

LONG hiatus! I must have mentioned the ransacking of our stuff stored at the mill, that we discovered the first time we went to the Farm market. Since then, police and then a second episode resulting in the arrest of two guys carrying stuff (kept as evidence; we don't know what.) This time the neighbour took photos! Two trips to collect stuff off the floor; they emptied almost every box. There were a LOT of boxes. I am still exhausted from the most recent Sunday; Geri helped. Happy to find some very special things still intact! - esp cut glass bowls! And six boxes of the newspapers from when I was the local reporter! Hope I find time/energy to look through them.


Weather is improving and crocuses in east yard are blooming and some in my mound out front. Daffies taking their time! Bought lawn seed for special "eco-grass" that only needs to be cut twice a season. Hope it works! And wildflower seeds that I was told would come up this year and prob bloom. I will broadcast seed tomorrow before the next rain and try to rake some of the lawn - not to remove anything but to turn leaves over so seeds fall to the soil. Maybe if they are under the leaves, critters may not eat them - or will...!

Sorting through stuffs bought up from mill and divesting myself of as much as possible(?). Have made a fair amount of pottery and have packed what has dried in bubble wrap and boxed to go to Beaver for firing. Triaging other stuffs to take for Leslie to dispense as she sees fit - keep or give to thrift shops...

Finally divested my self of 12 years of pent up anger/frustration at some of R's behaviours; brilliant but no sense at all sometimes (him). I tried to let it go but could not and it kept infringing. Now I feel lighter than air. He kind of gets the message that things need to be talked about- at the time. I kept it in, not wanting to upset him... Totally dumb! I acknowledged this/took some responsibility of being dumb. Things are considerably better. Will be even better after we go to Beaver and, with any luck, regain running water so I can spend time there and give him Space.

I still need to go to Mill with him to see if we can find my books; People have moved stuff around and I am totally in disarray over things that I have not seen in 7 years. I packed so carefully! I suspect my things are in an area I have not been able to access in several years. Things have been added haphazardly, things I cannot move alone. Will put this off for warmer weather- that place is cold and dank in mid-summer! But, at 85, I am feeling a compunction to get my stuff together - and jettison what no longer feels necessary. Like a foot high stack of OLD dress patterns! And OLD tax returns!

Yesterday, the next door neighbour caught me and we had a "conversation" in "Franglais" (French/English). She explained to me the property line, indicating we have our bins on her property. So, this am, R and I moved them to our side. And he noted the Stuff I have been asking to be rid of for a couple years. "It looks terrible; like no one cares!" Still did not move them... ...

The house itself is in pretty good shape. I also lightened a carpet several shades by vacuuming!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 13 Apr 22 - 04:11 AM

I fitted the replacement bullet camera for round the back. My installation there is a touch unusual as I want the camera roughly in line with our small gate into the field. I might just about get away with mounting near the edge of the house wall but a floodlight occupies the position I’d choose. My solution has been to fix a cranked tv pole mount to the wall and fix the camera (which is supposed to be wall mounted) to that. The base of the new camera was bigger than that of the old one and I ordered a new piece of sheet steel for mounting but when I took the old camera down, I found that drilling 4 new holes in the existing plate was all I needed.

The new camera has zoom (but on pan/tilt) so here are a couple of views from earlier this slightly dull morning max zoom and min zoom. It will spend most of it’s time near min zoom but to get a bit closer to the bird feeders and the bench where mum likes to sit when she gets out might be nice.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 13 Apr 22 - 07:57 AM

I am midway through a 'painting' of an underwater ancient shallow sea.
Instead of using paint I am using pounds of solid opal complete with Asian carved and polished plants and opal creatures from Australia, Africa and Mexico. On the upper right hand corner an island emerges from the sea with a palm tree and butter fly so far. I am carving a wave crashing on shore with color changing crystal opal today. The whole thing is about a foot wide and nine inches tall. The base is ocean floor opal and the other side is a display of various types of colorful opals big and small. Overall it is a serene sculpture of aqua and earth tones that could adorn any shelf or mantlepiece. Opals were formed under shallow seas millions of years ago. The idea for this piece came 15 years ago when I acquired the enormous piece of thick opal that looks like the sea that no one else wanted.
I use a mask, dremel and water to keep the dust down. I sold a cello to afford the opals over time which were much cheaper 15 years go.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Apr 22 - 10:24 AM

Don, I can visualize what you're talking about - are you mounting these pieces on a piece of wood or other solid backing?

Jon, is the camera a way to keep track that mum is safe when she's back there, or is it mostly for bird watching?

In my bedroom I've moved more furniture and picked up one of the rubber mats that goes under a runner carpet to keep it from slipping so the new carpeted workout area doesn't accidentally slide during exercises.

Attention must turn to out-of-doors; mowing, digging garden beds, and weeding. Inside, the small heat pump unit has been shifted over to its air conditioner phase because of the high humidity this week. I must dust all of the ceiling fans before they turn on and fling their blade dust accumulations into each room. And I'm on full-strength allergy meds now that pollen is flying.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 13 Apr 22 - 11:11 AM

SRS, I put a camera there for security but I do also use it to make sure mum is OK when she goes round the back. I also later fitted another camera that points down our narrow path to the small gate to the field. That one was put there purely to watch mum. I haven't got the shorter side of the house that runs by my work shed covered but I can follow most of the rest of her journey from the porch to the field.

Mum quite likes looking at what's happening down down the field when she's on her computer too.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 13 Apr 22 - 04:56 PM

Its like a jig saw puzzle but the picture is in your head.
It is ALL opal including the gorgeous sea. I'm using 6000 adhesive which can be removed with about 20 lbs of pressure. The front is now done with a masterful sea bed base of opal matrix which required steel epoxy. There are 25 fish and coral made of opal but the sea looks open with depth. The display of more valuable gems will be on the back.
Some opals are 30% water. Water and carbon are the ingrediants of life.

Its 80 out so I better do some yard work....


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Apr 22 - 09:22 PM

My bedroom ceiling fixture (lights and fan) flickered out yesterday, and a little testing convinces me that it is the switch. I have another iffy switch in the dressing room (only acts up occasionally) so today I picked up two replacements. I'll turn off the breaker and replace them in the morning.

While moving the mirrored dresser I forgot there was a TV aerial perched on top of the mirror frame and it came down with a clonk! onto the TV on the dresser itself. (This is the setup for my exercises). The TV is now blinking on and off, and after tests, I think it is actually the Fire Stick plugged into it that is acting up, not the TV. Cheaper if it needs to be replaced, but still a bother. There are other similar episodes around the house, things that need repair or replacement. The devices seem to be testing the pocketbook - repair or replace or live without.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Apr 22 - 11:58 AM

Friday morning and the house looks like it was picked up and shaken. So much to do, where to start? Paper is always a problem, so I've headed to the office closet and pulled out an old spiral notebook from graduate school, pulled out the dozen pages of book notes, and will use this in the kitchen to transcribe all of the scribbles on paper that seemed necessary to keep for some reason. I've used these kinds of notebooks in the past (there are two or three still around I occasionally refer to.)

Most of my grad school stuff is long gone, but notebooks that had few pages used and can be reassigned are still there, hence the adoption of one for my kitchen stuff. I tape in business cards, cut out pieces of fliers, whatever. Keep notes on when dogs need pills. Write down addresses and phone numbers. Much of what my phone is used for now, but in paper form.

On Facebook I posted the account of trespassers in the yard this week, an odd couple who I suspect have worked out some scams to play in their interactions with people. They got cash out of my next door neighbor, me, I just let the dogs bark at them until they finished a shower behind the fence near the garage (using the hose from next door). Overall, the dogs did what they are supposed to - they barked at strangers in the yard. The strangers ignored them, but it got my attention. Now if Cookie would just stop hunting my lizards.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 15 Apr 22 - 06:23 PM

I started clearing the garden of winter debris this week, so now I have a waist-high heap of deadfall branches off my (too) many maple trees and two huge bags of dead leaves swept, scraped and scooped off the patio. It’s still too early to clear the beds — that’s a task to undertake in May. At present, the cold wind howling in the chimney has me convinced to keep the furnace running for a while yet.

I’ve had three asthma flares since the snow melted, so I keep the dope kit handy and limit garden efforts to an hour or so at a time. Asthma notwithstanding, I’m singing well these days and I get out to the Y for pool class three mornings a week.

The next challenge is deodorizing the green Bokhara carpet in the parlour, which Watson has pissed on again. The air has a very slight pong and I’m expecting a dinner guest on Sunday. I’ve heard good things about Nature’s Miracle; any opinions, Stilly?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Apr 22 - 10:06 PM

Yes - my first choice of enzyme odor treatment is Nature's Miracle. I've mostly used the Skunk Odor Remover, but the one for cat or dog pee is also effective. I have a bottle under the sink for just in case, and the skunk odor remover also. Better to have it handy (especially the skunk stuff) because they usually get skunked after hours when the pet store is closed. Nature's Miracle also produce a very good clumping cat litter (I had to go to Walmart to find it.)

This afternoon I replaced light switches in the master bedroom and dressing room. One was just funky, the other was out completely. The house was built in the 1970s, I guess switches do wear out. Better a $2 switch on each than an $80+ fixture. The bedroom one is the lighted ceiling fan, and I'd need an electrician to take care of that.

I ran the lawnmower for a few minutes with the bag set to catch grass. I poured the contents of that bag over the compost heap, and tomorrow I'll move a second compost enclosure and mow more to put lawn clippings in the bottom before emptying the kitchen compost buckets there. And then I can start digging in the garden because I'll have a place for all of the grass and weeds.

This is an alcohol free month, but with dinner tonight I had a Mexican dark beer. Bought yesterday and planned to go with nachos because I thought it was suitable to celebrate the completion my taxes. (And the fact that I got them right and they're depositing my refund next week!)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 16 Apr 22 - 10:33 AM

Dupont:

Lovely wind storm yesterday afternoon! I slept through most of it and, as I regained consciousness, thought maybe I should move the car away from the trees. When I opened the front door, ... It did not hit the car!! But it took R some time this am to saw it up for removal from across the front flower bed - missed the daffies and crushed a small clump of crocuses. A large chunk of the tree had come down - a mostly hollow 12 inch D. at base and about 20 feet long. Lots of wood for the wood stove! Waiting for it to dry. I will park car further away!

Yesterday, I loaded the wheelbarrow with raked up stuff and took it to the woods. R finally put some junk into the trash bin. SO hard for him to let go of pure unadulterated JUNK! I have broadcast eco grass seed and a small patch of white clover; threw buckwheat seed on back raised bed. It may produce before time to plant veggies. If not, good for soil. I have ordered plants from our friends farm - Jardin de la Resistance! Starting some squash seeds in the house. Threw some lettuce seed on front bed. Very casual gardening!


I am still sorting through the stuff we brought back from the mill. Papers are hard... Trying to find space is hard. Need the filing cabinet OR would that result in just putting all the papers back in ...? Very old letters from #2 son and some others - people I failed to respond and lost... Darn!

Donuel: Project sounds amazing!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 16 Apr 22 - 12:46 PM

I filed my taxes (such a penitential job) on Thursday, and I owe. That’s because almost all my income is pensions, of which I get no fewer than four that together add up to a comfortable competence (as Anthony Trollope would put it). The withheld income tax on each pension is calculated as if the others don’t exist, so this year I must pony up lots and lots.

On the whole, I don’t mind that state of affairs and I think I’ll leave it be. The alternative is wasting hours of my life that I’ll never get back to contact the appropriate gummint minions — four of them, mind you — to have more tax deducted at source.

Off to Canadian Tire to buy Nature’s Miracle spray. I moved the second litter box to the ground floor in the hope that Watson assaulted the carpet only because he just could not face the stairs.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 16 Apr 22 - 01:31 PM

Project opal is done. i am depressed it is not fine art but as a shelf knick nack it is better than arts and craft junk. I miss the fun of building an opal world with surprises such as a butterfly opal waving above a nearby island suspended by a cat whisker. i am happy i made a great contrast in distance perspective using only 2 inches of depth much like a painting of an ocean floor close up stretching all the way to distant islands. Thats what pandemic time can do.

This pandemic is as though we all learned what its like to live in antarctica for years. Instead of being part of a herd stuck in traffic going from A to B there are long silences inside. I remember thinking how some opals resemble miniature nebulas, a remarkable sky or a forever nightime display of stars... Now its back to rearranging the food and display cabinates.

The big diversion trip of the day will be going to the fabric store.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Apr 22 - 02:32 PM

I think you're correct about COVID isolation being like living in Antarctica. The days blurred together, I read a lot of books (or listened to audiobooks) and sewed a lot. The creative time was not only appreciated it was necessary to keep one from going nuts. The recovery period from knee surgery did skew things at the beginning. And as to the art, maybe you're the Grandma Moses of applique bas relief.

I was able to print out a form for Social Security and drop it into a mail slot at the Social Security office to change my withholding. I think setting withholding for the state pension was a matter of putting a signed form in the mail. I'll have to explore this topic later this year when the second pension share (après divorce) comes into play. I did some searching, it appears to be taxable. Of course it is.

The compost enclosure has been relocated by reusing one of the posts from the former position and rotating the whole thing so the old pile is directly beside the black plastic expandable compost bin. I pound in those metal fence posts intended for chicken wire to keep this upright, and will make a chicken wire cover to put over the top to keep the dogs out. More precisely, to keep Cookie out. Now to head out to mow with the catcher bag so I can fill the bottom of that bin with clippings.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 16 Apr 22 - 04:48 PM

That reminds me I should apply for Social Security.
Bas relief applique, I like that. I dream of Angor Watt carvings.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Apr 22 - 11:20 PM

I didn't finish mowing the back, there might be about 10% left, but I did what I needed as far as dumping several mower bags full of lawn clippings into the various compost enclosures. The new bin got several bags, then I emptied one of the stinky kitchen waste buckets; the other bucket went over the top of the pile I built last year that needs to have a hiatus and break down. Clippings on top of that also. With all of this I came pretty close to getting enough steps for the day on my fitness tracker. Tomorrow I'll finish mowing the back and move to the front.

The forest floor was swept away today and I see clumps of dog hair on the dogs telling me they're getting ready to blow their coats. Soon there will be so much hair I'll be able to knit another dog.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 17 Apr 22 - 08:20 AM

I took another run at the clothes hanging in the boxroom yesterday and picked out a substantial pile of coats and sweaters that are in perfect condition but now much too big for me. I’ll have to keep them until the fall, however; Goodwill won’t want them until there’s frost in the forecast. Another pile is stashed in the car until Monday, when the dry cleaners will return to duty after their Easter break.

With any luck, by fall I will also be ready to let go of some more of Edmund’s clothes, and start on his array of hats — so far I have rehomed only one, an Army-issue fur number that the BIL accepted at a particularly chilly point in February. If only I knew more men with large heads!

Review of a fashion article posted on Facebook tells me that my 25-year-old tweed jacket is out of fashion. Again. It makes me look old, apparently. How much do I care? Not enough to ditch the tweed jacket, which is just the thing for a cold Easter morning with snow on the ground and a forecast high of 4 Celsius.

I’m roasting a leg of lamb this afternoon to share with a friend from pool class, who lived in France for 25 years and likes it as much as I do. She’s bringing wine and, I hope, a hearty appetite.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Apr 22 - 09:57 AM

Charmion, you remind me that I have a number of sweaters that I never wear that should be re-homed. If I bag them now they'll be ready to donate in the fall. I was efficient a couple of years ago when I thinned out a lot of too-small pants (alas, I have gone the other direction on the scale over the last few years). I have a few nice pairs that are in a size I think I might reach, but none of the single digit sizes are in the house now.

Jon, just now I was looking at the receipt for my two switches, and I admit to turning them over with puzzlement because of extra screws on the side (four total on each). I picked them up in the simple switch area (the last two) but it turns out they belonged in the bin of three-way switches. Since they operate in one place and no other switches feed into the same fixture it doesn't matter that they're three-way switches, right? Like using a regular lightbulb in a three-way lamp? They'll just turn on and off like they need to. Overkill, perhaps, but no harm done? (The light switch for the main bedroom fan/light fixture actually had a third wire, I assumed it was a ground, and I don't remember if the electrician ran an extra wire when he installed it.) I know the UK and the US probably wire things a bit differently (for one, we can't use our house wiring for radio or TV reception). I compared the switches carefully and just switched out the wires from the old ones to the same spot on the new ones, making sure not to put in the switch upside down.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 17 Apr 22 - 10:39 AM

SRS, I’m not sure what you mean by a three way switch. In UK domestic lighting, we have one way and two way switches, the latter allowing the light to be switched from 2 points. Adding switching points in between is possible and the switch used to do that is, as far as I know, usually referred to as an intermediate switch. This page explains things UK wise and says an intermediate switch could be used as a one way switch.

An annoyance with UK lighting wiring btw is that (unless they have changed with more modern houses) is that they don’t usually run a neutral wire to the switch. This limits the choices when looking to use home automation switches like z-wave ones.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Apr 22 - 11:18 AM

It looks like our three-way is your two-way. I've mulled over this - I'm not going to worry that there is anything wrong with how this switch works - when I thought about the light bulbs. You know the ones that you turn on the lamp and it's dim, then not so dim, then bright, then off - those are called three-way switches. If you put in a standard bulb it means you have to click through a couple of settings on the lamp before the light turns on, but it works just fine. I think that's the same thing here - it doesn't matter if something else is not wired in, it's just on and off.

I sent you a note via PM asking about html code.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Apr 22 - 11:54 PM

Three strips of thick sliced bacon, a few slices of Swiss cheese, a dab of mozzarella, two cups of milk in the carton, and I decided to use that with a few more ingredients in a no-crust quiche. I submerged broccoli in it for some extra color, and made it in a bundt pan. Helpful decluttering and a number of items into the trash for tomorrow's pickup. Leftovers for this week.

Gardening amendments are on the short shopping list for this week. I can't put off digging the garden beds any longer. I was hoping for rain today, but that chance diminished as the day progressed so tomorrow I'll water the area then till it after it soaks in a bit.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 18 Apr 22 - 06:10 AM

"...but now much too big for me..."

Alas, a problem I have never endured...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Apr 22 - 11:23 AM

Following Charmion's example, I bagged several sweaters that I bought on sale but never wear, that are too fussy or not my style any more, and as a closet bonus pulled a handful of t-shirts that are too small and, were I to lose that much weight, I still wouldn't wear. There are quite a few others in play that should probably also go, but it's a start. I need to aim at the "less is more" aspect of the closet, when everything I see is something I wear and I can mix and match it. It is a lot better than it used to be (I'd guess 10 years ago now I did a huge purge, and have struggled to avoid letting it get that bad again.)

I looked in the hall closet to see if there was anything in there needing thinning, but I'm less likely to remove an odd-fitting garment because on several occasions visitors to the house (who come in many sizes) have needed to borrow a jacket or windbreaker. A bonus for myself—I noticed my NPS uniform green windbreaker stashed behind a hanging shoe caddy that I keep filled with wool hats and mittens. In the past I removed the official patch from the shoulder so I can wear it as civilian gear now. I've been needing one this spring.

It is a kitchen luxury to have the new back yard compost pile in place and the two buckets from outside the kitchen door emptied into it. I can again easily empty the 2-quart stainless steel scrap bowl that sits in the corner of my kitchen counter. When the outside buckets were nearing capacity I tended to let that bowl heap before emptying it. It can attract fruit flies that way.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 18 Apr 22 - 11:56 AM

Dupont:

Re life during pandemic (still ongoing): I fell into months of muttering "nothing matters anymore". Lower than a snake's belly. When I finally found the energy to throw a few pots, that ended and I am managing bits and pieces. The onset of something akin to spring has helped. Unfortunately, my energy level quickly dips so I spend a lot of time resting.

I no longer have any idea how much I weigh; will find out when we get to Beaver - hopefully Friday or Saturday. R cannot back out as my 2nd booster is on Tuesday - in Bancroft. And, if he wants some time alone here, he needs to ensure I have running water there.

Yesterday I managed to clear two bookshelf units so I could change their positions, hoping for more effective use of TV room - getting room for the file cabinet to fit in the corner so I can replace all the darn paper - all I cannot bear to part with, that is. Dust and a bit of mildew are involved in most of stuff from the mill. I come close to just putting handfuls in the fire bin but then I find a few notes from friends or a really interesting article. SIGHHH!

This am, I have started putting stuff back on the shelves - after getting R to remove the huge fern we wintered for the neighbours to the first floor and cleaning up the major debris from it. One clean alcove! With the stuffed raccoon back on its pedestal to greet folks coming up the stairs. Hopefully the plant will go home in a week or so!

I have taken to opening the BR window and keeping the door closed so I have a safe place from dust.

R is also de-cluttering and it is making him happy - taking huge machines to the scrap yard and clearing properties of stuff so they are salable! A major declutter!! I have been begging for it all the 12 years we have been co-habiting. He is finally realizing... He will be 75 on Monday...

Back to it!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Apr 22 - 12:50 PM

Dorothy, I took a look in my attic recently and see areas where I can tidy it for future work I do or for whenever I prepare to sell and move. It isn't damp like the mill, it is dry and dusty, but it is still hard on things stored there for a long time. For starters I dragged down a huge plastic xmas tree stand that hasn't been used in a dozen years. I think it is bound for Goodwill, unless I figure a way to plant something in it in the garden. ;-)

Regarding papers that are moldy and sentimental, I would suggest doing a scan (using a flatbed scanner or one of the overhead Bookeye scanners if your library has one) then saving the PDFs someplace secure and go ahead and burn those papers. Who is going to want them after you? If they're moldy, a library probably can't add them to the collection. AND - the bonus - if you scan any print documents as searchable PDFs you can find things quickly in that file.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Apr 22 - 11:16 AM

Charmion, did the enzyme cat pee treatment work?

Confession time: I had two cats in the apartment before moving here. They decided to repeatedly hit the carpet in one corner of the living room. Before moving out I pulled back the carpet, cut out the foam pad across the diagonal, then treated the concrete and the rug before putting down a new fitted piece of carpet mat (I'd picked up a remnant). I placed a large box over it to keep the cats away until we moved out. That at least solved the problem for human noses until the rent deposit was returned.

More clothes (pants and shirts) out of the closet today and I returned my stacked folded t-shirts to stacks by color. The rest of the clothes need attention - it'll soon be time to do a load of laundry - so I'll work on re-setting the clothesline posts today. Digging them out and adding more concrete to the existing footers should do the job. And new cross members to attach the lines (I have pieces left from the last fence project.) This is officially a declutter project in that it will use all existing materials.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 19 Apr 22 - 11:53 AM

Dupont:

Declutter for today: 4-5 inches of "sno-rain" wet and heavy! It's ok. Careful driving is in order at just above freezing.

SRS: I have been stalled by the mold! I dare not go through any more. I consider copying a couple special pieces that have surfaced. The printer needs attention. I wonder about putting piles of papers in the oven - it exhausts to outside. A googled site suggests placing papers in an open container to fit in a large closed container of charcoal/unscented kitty litter/baking soda ... Another, very well done, showed how to prepare a large bin for record album covers and using a small ozone generator, with a tube running into the bin. Ozone is unhealthy to all living things!

I will try baking soda for small amounts and take a good look at the whole picture. Not all the papers are smelly.

Meanwhile, there are other matters needing attention!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Apr 22 - 12:14 PM

Dorothy, put the pages in an air-tight ziplock bag and freeze them for a while (at least 3 days). Be sure to keep it sealed once it comes out (so condensation doesn't enter). That's what archivists do when working to restore library or archives materials that have water damage. Baking would make them incredibly brittle and dark.

Archiving Documents with Mold


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 19 Apr 22 - 12:28 PM

All human-detectable evidence of cat pee has faded, thank God, and both cats have approved the litter box that I moved to the ground floor.

It blocks the original back door to the house, but that entry is literally the only available niche big enough for a litter box. Fortunately, that door is not the only alternative to the front door; there’s also a door to the garage immediately opposite and a retro-fit patio door at the other end of the galley kitchen. If somebody chucks a Molotov cocktail in at the window, I can still escape safely.

It’s snowing in Stratford. Bleah.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 20 Apr 22 - 06:57 PM

Dupont:

SRS! that sounds great. There is room in the freezer! And we are going to Beaver on Friday - til Tues. I have a plan!!! TY!

R did watch the youtube on using ozone AND declared is reasonable science. We do have an ozonator for a reason neither of us can remember!

Laundered bedding yesterday and asked R to help with fitted sheet - Darn thick mattress is unwieldy and too much of a struggle.

In the meantime, I have put a metal baskets of papers where ever I can find space on rads in areas I don't frequent. There are still two boxes of mixed china in the car - R needs to bring them in for me.

Lots of stuff put aside to leave permanently - going to Bancroft. And other stuff to take - never can remember what clothes I have there.

Pain in side/back has become worse; a call to the Dr. office elicits - vacation 'til Tuesday. I will go there for booster on Tuesday; the chances of talking to someone??? The nice receptionist could not even tell me they were on vacation! She put me through to voice mail which said not to leave a message. I am running out of ideas for self-care.

SO, must remember to phone for appointment to get tires changed on Mon or Tues; it was on today's "list"...! (The tires are at Beaver.) Other things did get done. I had moments of thinking to make pots but when I stood up to go do it, the energy was gone.

Snow gone! Hoping some of the seeds I threw on the ground a few days ago will have sprouted when I return. Parsley is starting to appear from last year's seeds.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 20 Apr 22 - 09:41 PM

The best time to mow the yard is usually tommorrow.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Apr 22 - 12:09 AM

I concur - I've managed to put off mowing that way for weeks at a time. :)

For the first time in 20 years I've lived here the boundaries and utility easements are correct. Two years ago the buyer next door scheduled a new fence to be put up on the west side of the yard and I asked them to use the survey to determine the placement because I knew the existing one was about 3 feet too close to my house (fault of the previous owner of my house, long story, goofy guy). I got back the rest of my yard.

The utility easement cuts across the long pie-shaped back yard about 2/3 of the way back, though a previous phone line installation ended up being laid all around the outside of the fence and coming back into the yard next door (where the wire was intended). Those neighbors are putting in Uverse fiber optic and the tech who spoke to them yesterday was going to go out and around the fence again, on top of the now-useless copper phone line. (There is another ancient line that SW Bell put down that jogs from the back of my house, around the garage, and into the next yard. I should find it and pull it out.)

I had a copy of my survey in hand and caught the service crew today and saved them a lot of digging - the line went straight across where the easement is and followed that line through the neighbor's yard. (Yes, Keberoxu, the dogs stayed in the house.) It may seem an odd placement, but we live near a year-round creek and the village won't place easements in the way of floodwater. This means that were I to sell my house tomorrow I wouldn't have to put up a new fence or pay someone to come in and put the utilities where they belong. (The previous owners rented out the house for 10 years so didn't have to disclose this kind of stuff. I would have to.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Senoufou
Date: 21 Apr 22 - 02:18 AM

My trusty gardener finally mowed both lawns back and front yesterday. I summoned some energy and trimmed all round the edges with my long-handled shears.
There's going to be a rent-a-table-for-a-fiver jumble sale soon at our village hall. I'm considering turning out my wardrobes and drawers and getting together a collection to sell. I seem to wear just the same half-dozen sets of clothes nowadays, and never use the posh ones, so someone might like to buy them.
My neighbour is having central heating installed next week. She's a real hoarder, and has had to declutter big-time to leave enough space around the house for radiators and pipes. To get a 1000 litre oil tank into her garden, she's also having to move about twenty (!) large tubs of flowers. She's very worried, it will be like drawing teeth I expect.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 21 Apr 22 - 03:54 AM

Well after another period of no use, I found another little job for the 3d printer today. Dad had an accident with one of his coin boxes the other day and the drawers and the coins all spilled out onto the floor. I think he dropped it but the box should have a bar to at least stop the draws falling out. He's lost that and with his handling, even if he only tilted it, it would only be a matter of time before a shelf or two slid out...

I've made him a a new bar.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Apr 22 - 06:55 PM

I go to a couple of Goodwill stores a week, mostly with a list from family of items they're looking for. I was sidetracked today when I spotted a Russel Wright Iroquois parsley green bowl. And then some starburst saucers. I just realized I never looked for the main thing I was there for! Bowl and four saucers, .89 each. It's a win!

Heightened pressure now for clearing up stuff around the house because guests are coming for lunch on Sunday. It would also be nice to have the yard looking tidy. A day for each?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 21 Apr 22 - 08:21 PM

Dupont:

Car is mostly loaded for tomorrow's exit! I am very happy to be going home. And hopeful that R can fix the water situation. With any luck, the water will have thawed and the pump will be functional. Worst case: new pump. Hope they have one in town!

I tried to get an appointment to get tires changed but they are a week and a half behind! A couple service places have closed. They need to hire another staff... Bit slow on that! Maybe the son and gal are still getting their bearings after death of main man last summer. I shall have to bring the tires back here and find someplace.

Also need appointment for regular maintenance - CALL Tomorrow, Dorothy!!

Turned heat down. Away five days. Watered plants.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 22 Apr 22 - 06:39 AM

Something I might get round to this weekend is putting the tap timers back outside and reconnecting the pump in the field and then checking things are working. There shouldn't be much to do but there is usually the odd joint and tap to fix on the plastic pipework. I also ought to do some mowing but haven't got the energy so will leave that a few more days.

Potatoes (a few Aran Pilot I put in tubs a week or two back and Nicola Alan planted for us on Tuesday) are in and I've got tomatoes and aubergines growing on the windowsills to be planted early May. So we are at least off to a start with some of our bits of garden produce.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Apr 22 - 11:24 AM

This morning I cleared space in the freezer for two 10# bags of organic flour from Costco. Two years ago at this time I was running out of white flour and the regular stores were empty (along with baking yeast, hand sanitizer, toilet paper, kleenex, and many other staples). My next door neighbor scored this same package for me when she was at Costco back then (when we weren't wearing masks yet and I was staying home after knee surgery). What a difference two years make. I was baking every week to share with the neighbors (to offer a pleasant surprise each week.)

Today I'm beginning the practice of "put things away every time you move through any room" to clear up for guests. Looking at the house through other's eyes is easier when people are scheduled to be here soon.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Apr 22 - 10:36 PM

Digging a new hole for the clothesline post was tough so after making a few inches progress I poured in a gallon of water. 30 minutes later digging the rest was much easier. Compared to the last post, this hole is narrower and deeper by about 10 more inches. Tomorrow I'll work on the second post and can probably put the cross-members with the hooks in place later in the day. I need to pick up another bag of concrete first.

There is a list of things family members have asked me to look for on my Goodwill trips, and today I was able to hand over a $7 like-new Food Saver vacuum sealer to my ex. We've ordered a 2-pack of the rolls of 8" plastic that gets made into bags (I'm almost out so we'll share). There are several online sites with operating manuals for just about anything you can think of, and this one was easy to find. Another satisfied customer!

I've made progress picking up around here, but there is more to do.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 23 Apr 22 - 01:28 PM

I paid my taxes yesterday, and by close of play today I will have decluttered the study of a seven-year-old Tax and Expenses file. The shredder will get a workout.

But right now the sun is shining and I need to stop frowsting and get out of the house.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Apr 22 - 12:53 AM

As annoying as taxes are, it's good to finish them. And I also have identified some files in adjacent folders that I need to thin and shred or burn soon.

The cross-member for the first clothesline pole is assembled and in place. It attaches via fence support to the very top of the post and has four heavy duty hooks screwed into it. The next post will be installed after I clean up from lunch tomorrow. This evening I got smart about the next bag of concrete - I ordered it curbside pickup so they have to bring that bag out and lift it into the SUV for me. Those bags of concrete are killers to move around. When I get back home I can tumble it out into the wheelbarrow. No lifting. (To mix it, rip open the bag and stir in a gallon of water in the wheelbarrow.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Apr 22 - 10:02 PM

Lunch went well, everyone came during nice weather but left when the radar showed storms looming; it hasn't rained enough yet to make the garden digging this coming week any easier. I need a good downpour so I can run the tiller through it easily. The soil around here is hard clay when it's really dry. If it doesn't rain I'm going to have to water it heavily.

Normally I scan slides at the museum later in the week but I have to be there for a meeting tomorrow, so will see if I can scan after that. It'll save me an extra trip and give me more time to work on the garden. I have sworn to myself that it will be put in this month, and I have only six days left. While I'm out I'll stop by the store for that bag of concrete. The clothesline restoration is a close second to finishing the garden this month.

I'm hoping to get back to some sewing in the evenings. There are requests for Pride masks (and a friend today asked shyly if I have any purple fabric for a mask for him for a targeted project of his?)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Apr 22 - 05:01 PM

Gardening week here, after a rain and with a few sunny days ahead.

One dog to the vet, checked out fine, but she's one to snap so he didn't check out her teeth. (We slip on a small muzzle when I'm over there.) :) I also picked up the bag of concrete on the way home, though the woman doing the lot loader work probably suffers lifting that stuff as much as I do. I assisted in getting the bag into the SUV. The dog, in the middle row of seats (her leash tied to the driver's headrest just in case) had no issues with the lot loader. And as usual, when let out of the car in the garage she was very happy to scamper around and into the house, to be met by inquiring noses who figured out she'd been over to That Place.

So, gardening, mowing, and replacing the second clothes line post. That'll keep me busy.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Apr 22 - 12:59 PM

Jon, I posted an article about security problems identified on Linux on an old Linux thread (refreshed just now, so it will slowly drift down the page). Something Microsoft has identified and reported on.

I'm plugging along here and it's mostly yard work today. Along with the garden I have to get my sprinkling system set up soon because things dry out quickly here on hot days. Deep infrequent watering without wasting a lot on the concrete is the goal. And if I get the trimming and mowing done today the yard will be at it's peak for the season because the irises are all blooming.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 28 Apr 22 - 12:37 PM

Dupont:

Water was fine; pump was fine! R fixed a couple minor leaks and read a lot of books - having bought more at local thrift shops... Took lots of stuff to thrift shops and to the shop, including pottery which I managed to fire, glaze and fire - beautiful! Small box of soap dishes for Rita await pick up from my car.

Brought summer tires back and have appointment on 9 May for service and tire changeover! That will de-clutter the pocketbook! But no rent owed at shop so I have sold enough pottery to pay that. I did not ask if there was any $ left over for me as Pat was busy. R insisted on sharing his BD cheesecake with her! I waited until supper. (75th!) Pat is a pretty special person.

Got my 2nd booster on Tuesday- crawled into bed fully clothed with terrible chills for an hour or so, then was OK- battened down the hatches to head back to Quebec. Stopped at Goldmine to pick up two dozen carrot/raisin muffins (favs!) and a scrumptious, healthy lunch.   

Home before dark and unloaded, food in frig and went to bed. The lunch and half a "choc/expresso" muffin were adequate. Still tired on Weds, managed to get through about 300 emails, deleted a few with the thought of deleting a lot more when more awake! (Did so this am.)

Last night, instead of going to bed - much needed - I watched a hockey movie!! Caught by a Sikh presence on screen before I could turn it off, I succumbed to what could be termed "counter-racist"? I watched it because of the Sikhs; I would not have watched just two "white" teams. Not implausible, the neophyte hockey players won the tournament out of sheer determination(they had to,to make it a good movie!), and with a whole Sikh wedding party cheering them. It had redeeming qualities, and was kind of fun. Went to bed after R got home (10), without feeding him.

We have come to a point of: he comes home late; I am tired; he can forage in the frig. At worst there are sandwich makings. Today I will replenish the frig with forageables. After I do the tax thing... R said he would do it but it became harder then doing it myself - and just when we needed to be leaving Beaver!

I have a pile of Quaker pamphlets and a few books which I have been trying to re-home. Did not open the computer until I got back and...! There was an email from a Montreal Quake offering to give it a try - BUT they are at Beaver so it will have to wait until next trip. DARN! But good to know anyway - hope! They have been cluttering the LR, from wherever they were previously stashed, for a couple months! Too good to just throw out, too specific to go to a thrift shop.

My weight is back up to 170 so thinking hard about what I eat. Back to a stricter diet. Ah! Cook chick peas for humous! The only time I managed to loss significant weight (20 years ago): one or two slice toast/tahini; lettuce and humous; chicken/veggies. Time to try again.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 Apr 22 - 06:30 PM

My arms and legs were achy today after yesterday's mowing the front yard. I forgot to switch the mower from bag to mulch and it was quite heavy - I struggled and wondered why I was so tired, then about 3/4 through the job realized I had about 30 pounds of wet grass in the bag weighing everything down. I dumped that in the garden and finished, just mulching. Good exercise, but it takes longer! The irises are blooming and when the yard is mowed and trimmed (I did both yesterday) it looks very park-like out there.

Clothesline is back in operation, and I split the difference - the new post is straight and strong, the other post is leaning but solid. So for now it's in use and when I don't have so many other yard chores to do I'll put in a new post and take out the old one. Both crossmembers were replaced with leftover treated lumber 2x4 chunks from the fence work. A little shorter than before, but not a problem (the lines are a little closer together.) I dried a batch of sheets out there in the late afternoon. (I sometimes tumble things on air - and am reminded, I need a new lightbulb for the dryer. It burned out last week - I've had this dryer for 20+ years, so that's a pretty good run for one bulb!)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 29 Apr 22 - 07:26 PM

I stopped work for a little while this afternoon when a friend came over, giving me a chance to take some allergy meds. Sneeze central here still, even though I'm wearing a mask for yard work. I'm using the weed whacker to take the weeds down to the soil (and then some) then I'll run the tiller through the raised beds. There is also a wheelbarrow of compost with soil amendments to mix in (earlier I tilled up one of the ancient compost mounds in the back - it comes out a nice rich crumbly finished compost to mix into the garden.) Tomorrow is the last day of April, so I need to push myself to meet my end-of-the-month deadline. I probably need a couple of planks to prop up the sides of these beds because last year's planks have crumbled. I found the cheap decking at Lowe's works pretty well.

I've pulled more stuff for donation out of my closet, this time shoes that are more snug than I like. In the last 20 years I find a half-size larger is more comfortable, but I've bought some of the old size (probably on days when my feet were feeling skinny). Clothes and shoe sizes have also shifted over time (the industries are not consistent).


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 29 Apr 22 - 07:39 PM

I can't replace weed whacker line so screw it, I am replacing it with a universal robust nylon blade head. Boy the lawnmower blades sure do sharpen up quick with a corobundum drill attachment.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 30 Apr 22 - 12:10 AM

I had a trimmer with the solid brush blade attachment, but I've never used it - I fear I'd take out way too much of the landscape. Or hurt myself. It isn't difficult refilling the cartridge for the trimmer, I keep a reel of extra line in my greenhouse with a few spare spools that get reused. The manufacturers would like you to think they're one use and done, but that simply isn't the case.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 30 Apr 22 - 10:52 AM

Damn! A pan of steamed spinach last night got left on the stove cooling overnight so had to be tossed this morning. I must return to not cooling, but simply packing the extra veggies in the batch right when they're finished. This has happened lately—if I forget and turn off the light over the stove I often don't notice the light to go through the kitchen before bedtime to notice something that should be put away. That was a couple of servings into the compost.

One last garden bed to weed whack then the tilling begins. I also have to pull up a bunch of sunflowers that have established themselves at the east end of the garden. I usually let a few grow during the season outside of the beds, but these are all dropped seeds from last year and the area is paved with sprouting sunflowers. Must thin!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 30 Apr 22 - 10:53 AM

A spare wound spool (or, in my case with the petrol trimmer, the whole head unit I can screw on) is a good idea. Winding the line, as SRS says, shouldn't be that difficult but I'd rather the quicker change if the it runs out while cutting.

My petrol trimmer came with a metal blade but I've never used it.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 30 Apr 22 - 11:04 AM

Yes, I should have explained, when I'm working in the yard I wear an old nail apron around my waist (one from Home Depot meant for roofers) that I tuck in my phone case in one pocket and in the other I have a small pruner, a putty knife (to scrape wet grass out of the mower underside) and a pair of gloves, and into one side or the other goes a spare roll of trimmer line ready to exchange where ever the first roll runs out. No going back to the greenhouse to fill the same one. I probably have a half-dozen spools like that around here so I fill them when I get a chance then use them as needed.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 30 Apr 22 - 11:17 AM

Dupont:

cleared some small branches in front yard and gathered them in drive for R to cut up. Whacked longish - already! - grass closest to side neighbour. Will do more today; realized I can cut without harming the dandelions and yarrow, if done NOW! I can only manage a few minutes at a time - then rest.

Have a goal of mending this pair of pants that have been in the sewing machine for ...months! Then some more sewing ... BUT ...

Need to arrange some serious window coverings to keep sun/heat out. Thinking one inch styrofoam, the sort used for packed and trashed - maybe find some... I lived in a drafty old farm house years ago and made a styrofoam insert for each window to keep cold at bay; it also worked to keep heat out in summer. They were easily removed and re-placed.

Sounds like more thoughts than action but I have managed some small organizing things as I have recovered from trip.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 01 May 22 - 08:29 AM

It’s raining and grey in Stratford today, but yesterday was glorious — perfect for yard work, so I did some and then burned a heap of winter deadfall from the damnable silver maple trees.

Tree sex is an issue for me this year, as I have become allergic to their pollen. Consequently, I am living better through biochemistry while fighting back the inevitable sinus headache. I swear it takes at least twenty percent off the top of my personality.

The house is tidy, if a bit dusty, and all the laundry is done and stowed. The basement is clearer, thanks to a Mennonite friend who relieved me of some four dozen large Mason jars of three different sizes. The TV and its peripherals are finally established in the parlour in a purpose-built cabinet that keeps all the copious wiring under control, out of sight, and away from the cats.

The next challenge is spring-cleaning the garage. That’ll end in a trip to the dump! What larks.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 01 May 22 - 10:37 AM

People are colder
a little bit older
There's places off limits
that make you grimmace
Like Antarctica
or your town in lockdown

Just being there requires
permission and rules.
You'll see people act
like mad dogs and fools.
So we pretend and dream
Its not how its seems.

If we're someplace else
we can ignore what we abhor.
Like what we wear or
where we can't go.
Can we abbandon that crap?
Whats wrong with that?
well...

We could freeze or catch our death of cold


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 01 May 22 - 12:28 PM

Dorothy, returning a repaired pair of pants to your wardrobe is a gift to yourself. Periodically I'll sit down at the sewing machine and repair various items left in the sewing studio for attention. If it's worth repairing that means it was a favorite pair of pants. (I should look to see if I have any accumulated mending candidates, come to think of it.)

What is it about strange people coming by the house this spring? Last evening a large older burly man walked down the street on the other side, then a few minutes later back up and past, except a couple of minutes later I looked up from my garden area to see this very large man kind of lumbering up the driveway. I looked around - I had a short shovel with a good grip handle within reach as a weapon - and asked him if I could help him? He asked if I needed help. "No, I'm fine," and after he headed back down the driveway, "Thank you for asking." Because even though he creeped me out he probably meant well.

The garden beds are ready for the tiller today. And planting. And I must figure out the pattern for my sprinkler setup. And mow the back yard. And transplant a number of small trees and shrubs given me by friends.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 01 May 22 - 02:48 PM

Strangers:
There have always been mad dogs and fools
but recently they seem lonely and desperate.
Shovels are quiet weapons and grave tools.
Honest to god I hope you won't attempt it.
For all we know he's looking for a pretty spot
to bury the ashes of his pet cat Montserrat.

I mowed this morning and beat the rain.
What's this commercial about testing your dog's DNA?
It reminds me of ancestry.com


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 01 May 22 - 04:17 PM

There are woods across the road for pet burying if he doesn't have a yard. If he's into more Nature he can leave it on the surface in the opening and let the vultures find it. (I usually take squirrels over there that have been hit in the street. It saves the vultures from being disturbed by traffic while they're dining.)

I may need to repair the throttle cable on my tiller, it's hanging up, and I will definitely remove the bar on the back. It has it's use but I think I'd prefer to go over the top of the soil more easily or even (as several suggest) pull it backwards to get the most bang for that dust-churning buck.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 01 May 22 - 04:43 PM

The woods across the street here is where I release live animals like turtles. The most unusual animal was a brilliantly colored scarab beetle. One morning there were about seven turtles each half piggy backed on the turtle ahead atop a log that pointed at the rising sun by the water's edge. Each with their heads turned upward as in a religious ceremony.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 01 May 22 - 05:45 PM

Throttle cable is okay, was just loosened and out of the housing, but I need a new air filter and have to get a bottle of foam filter oil. Do I wait till Friday from Amazon or try the lawn and garden place tomorrow? I'll try the local folks first.

The turtles are at the bottom of my back yard in the creek, along with numerous fish, snakes, mollusks, and various birds. Ducks, herons, etc. It really is nice living surrounded by so many interesting animals, it means the environment is healthy enough to support them (and me).

I've raked out the area I tilled so far, now to run an errand before I finish (and while I'm out, mail my ballot for May 7.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 May 22 - 12:36 PM

The local place doesn't have the tiller parts I need, so they're on order via Amazon, but the filter supposedly won't arrive for a couple of weeks. Darn. I want to use the tiller now. Maybe I'll get lucky and it will arrive ahead of time (I suspect this simply isn't in Amazon's warehouse so they can't predict when someone will poke it in the mail.)

A storm blew through and the power flickered last night, enough so I had to reset the clock on the stove and microwave. I wonder how much "zombie" power I'm losing to all of these devices with ready lights and clocks?

The week looks likely to be a bit stormy. If I'd managed to plant my garden things would be tousled in the wind. I'll concentrate of stabilizing things that might blow away instead. And there is indoor work to do.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 02 May 22 - 10:50 PM

Dupont:

Big grocery shopping today - almost alone in the store! All put away! Black beans cooked and a pot of rice. This reminds me to boil some potatoes - tomorrow.

We spent a chunk of Sunday switching chests of drawers so I have one large enough- decluttered BR. Found a spot for the noxious love seat so it is less in the way. R found a better spot for TV aerial and put an apparatus from box onto counter in TV - it is supposed to play all manner of recording things and a radio as well. And change records to cds!? If we can figure out how to work it! It now has a spot so we can study on it. And he moved the A/C from in front of the closet door so I can try to organize the closet better.

Slowly sorting my way through the piles of paper. Managing to divest myself of some and finding really interesting stuff - letters from my very young sons and lots more.

Those still unfinished pants are black jeans for R; no need as he picks up pairs at thrift shops from time to time. But they are still use-able - maybe tomorrow. They will be followed by another pair to mend and give away, at least one pair to hem and then a variety of other sewing projects. Some may be completed in this life time. Just want to tidy the TV room.

Next the downstairs hall: boxes of clay, 3 card tables and a shelf unit with grow lights attached for starting plants... I offered it to a friend today; she wants a pic; if not raining tomorrow, I shall getting outside so I can take pic. Then leave it and the card tables on back deck covered with plastic. Plan to use the tables in August for one last craft show - a BIG community event with live music all day for two days and lots of neat people - for which I shall strive to make a modest amount of pottery so it is less work packing and unpacking.

Big thing is deciding whether or not to risk life by going to suburban Philly for memorial of my close friend who died in January. An 8 hour drive (not risking flying) and R may or may not go with me. Thinking two 4 hour days and a night in hotel. No 2 son is going; could be my emissary. Could see bro and SIL also. And a few other folks. Maybe even go folk dancing on Friday night; they insist on vax and masks. And the Playhouse (nursery school) clothing sale will be on!!!! ...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 May 22 - 01:11 AM

Can you take a train, Dorothy? Would that feel any safer? I'm still not ready to get in airplanes either.

I spent time sewing today, I haven't done that for a while and it was nice. At the same time I watched and cleared out a few things in the SLING virtual DVR. (TVs and Fire Sticks around the house make this possible just about anywhere.) My next mask pattern is a brown/black background with various brightly colored chili peppers, non-directional so I can get more masks from the swatch. As usual, I'll take one with me to the museum this week and present the prototype to my daughter to try on. They're all 3D these days, with t-shirt yarn holding them on.

The jigsaw puzzle in the sunroom was neglected for a while - it is a tough one - but I've got a few of the more charismatic portions of it underway now so expect to spend a few minutes a day in there.

Yard work will be when I can get to it - weather-wise, mostly. Good thing we have a long growing season, I'm getting a late start.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 May 22 - 11:48 AM

Knee surgery is on the calendar next month and now the ducks begin their involved lining-up process. And I need to be rather obsessive about keeping up the exercise to make sure the legs are strong for the recovery period. It helped a lot last time. I'll also focus on losing a few pounds.

The weather has been iffy here this week - two more days of possible showers restricts some activities (hanging out that next load of laundry, for one.) I can mow even if the lawn is damp. I'll be sure it is set on mulch so I won't kill myself like last week with the full mower bag.

Tiller parts will trickle in for the next couple of weeks and the new light bulb for the dryer has a two-week travel itinerary. The last dryer bulb lasted for 20 years, that's a pretty good run (even though it isn't on for more than a few minutes a week so it doesn't add up to a bunch of hours.)

Once the tiller is back in service I'm going to work on a few spots in the front yard to enlarge the flower beds. Turf is a waste of space, and there is half of the front that I can more or less isolate from the rest of the lawn so in theory, keep out encroaching grass and let it just be xeriscape plantings. This is a long-range plan, and with the understanding that in the future if I sell the house someone else might plow it all up and plant grass again. My aim is to make the landscaping both attractive and durable. (Too nice to get rid of.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 04 May 22 - 03:12 PM

I am reminded of the 3 mile island nuclear radiation release. People were vomiting with diarrhea and had a metalic taste. The fish in the Susquahanna river were all dead but authorities still insisted there was no danger to the public. I only had a strange intense nausea in my spinal column. Come to find out we came within 30 minutes of a chernobyl event. By day 3 I was 3000 miles away.

Treating Covid like the common cold going forward may hinder the awareness and necessicity of vaccine repeatition. Pretending we are finally back to normal may too optimistic but the trade off is with a potential mass social insanity.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 04 May 22 - 04:56 PM

Dupont:

Getting a bit smarter: listening to one of Mike's wonderful music programmes while I work. Need to remember more often.

Donuel: My two sons were in the vicinity of three mile at the time - with their idiot father. They did not get close enough to get sick but the wonderful youngest son of my friend Tina - whose memorial I will attend next week- died of cancer and suspected the cause - apparently "lots of young people" got the cancer after. Kip was in his mid 20s when he died - a self-supporting musician. Just a year older than my #2 son and one of his first playmates. Taun is planning to attend Tina's Memorial. (He lives in Philly.)

Found airbnb close enough; most in the area are taken that weekend! Waiting for a response from R before finalizing reservation - on a horse farm! Beautiful area!Only about 30 minutes from most of people/places. (Train is too public.)

Managed to mend two pairs of black jeans - one for R and one for other; started to hem another pair but back ached too much to do anything more! Pulled a few weeds this morning - that is the max! Yesterday: got that plant starting shelf unit out to back porch and photoed it for Rita, also put card tables out. The rest of clearing the hallway is up to R. This am, before leaving, he pulled the portable A/C out of a closet to the BR, ready for heat! I will put winter things in bins, and boots in its place. Clear the space for pottery; hope it uses different parts of back! It has never been this bad before.

Tulips started a couple days ago only one clump but it is growing!; daffies a week ago and still lovely, coltsfoot covered a chunk of "lawn" but now finished blooming; it was lovely. purple violets sprinkled around - to be encouraged! And some freckled ones in back yard! I will try to spread them around after they bloom. Yarrow coming up and tansy.The three little cherry trees are leafing out healthily. I had them wrapped in hardware cloth and chicken wire all winter. It was supposed to rain today but only sprinkled; I threw some wild flower seeds across the front yard - hopeful! Oh dear! no rain in sight for a week. They plant themselves so well when not wanted. There is a big clump of brown eyed Susan in a raised bed at Beaver that I can bring back next trip.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 04 May 22 - 05:36 PM

Dorothy, I'm sad to say the cancer deaths near the TMI plant are ubiquitous and horrific. There are some cancer survivors but we know that is for the short term. The wounds of being lied to are deep, especially from self inflicted evils of Nuke disasters and bio-war.

You get Spring a month late compared to us but we pay a price in August. Air Travel is pretty good as long as you pick a good carrier that hasn't had mass cancellations.

Your posts chronical everyday life in a way historians love. I don't think distant archeologists will be able to uncover our digital remarks.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 May 22 - 06:07 PM

Don, My brother and I are "downwinders" from living near the Hanford plant when we were young. The family moved away fairly soon after my brother was born, but Mom put us on a list of people to be notified of events or studies - after a dozen years or so that listing went away. I suppose if some insurance company went digging in those records they could hold that against us.

I've been achy for a couple of days, no other symptoms. I'll go ahead and do a COVID test, just to be super safe.

Lawn mowing and trimming in back this evening. Today a small box arrived, an air filter kit for the lawn mower includes a spongy filter I don't usually use in the mower, so I might cut it into shape for the tiller. I could get started on that work now rather than waiting a couple of weeks. I can add a little oil to it later. This would be much better than the crumbly filter that was in the machine when I took it apart.

Alternate day fasting has resumed for now. I need to get some more fruit and veggies this evening, after I finish mowing.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 04 May 22 - 08:47 PM

The US has passed the 1 million covid death count.
Doesn't seem real somehow. A much smaller number feels more believable.
I now know how 700 million sudden deaths might feel like.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 08 May 22 - 01:20 PM

A proposed new gadget for Jon to think about.
A new navigation system enables a swarm of 10 lightweight drones to fly together without crashing into one another or obstacles, even in challenging places such as forests.

Drones can compute their location and find a path to follow using a panoply of sensors, which can be expensive and unwieldy. Shrinking down a drone often involves getting rid of key components, impacting its ability to travel safely.

I've always thought having a drone would be interesting, but fear I'd lose it in the trees around here.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 08 May 22 - 04:53 PM

Dupont:

Nerve wracking wondering about the trip to PA and then about planning it, is over. The die is cast. Diagram of who I will meet when and things to do in white spaces. Leave on Thursday, Albany overnight, PA Fri eve to a friend and we will all go to the folk dancing. Me: hoping I can dance a few easy ones! SIL being very conciliatory: whenever you can, just call and come over.

Trimmed taller grass in front today, careful to miss dandelions. Two loads of laundry, still to be sorted and bed re-made. Wonderful weather no humidity and nice breeze. R in Den with wood stove perking! I turned the heat WAY down!

Collected some more items from the Mill yesterday; no sign of the rest of my vinyl albums or Marie Corelli books. The storage area looks like a cyclone hit - totally stirred up. Still pecking away at sorting and burning and sorting some more; there is a lot more paper still there. I consider just getting rid of it but have found some treasures in the first lot.

Box packed to take to #2 son - negatives for last 80 years, possibly?. Another folder for bro, and another bag for folk dance group. Making distilled water for the trip. Found decent clothes in closet - that fit! Been wearing the same few things for two years.

This trip into my distant past community could be its own kind of cyclone.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 08 May 22 - 07:53 PM

Saw you guys on mudcat facebook for my mudcat fix. The best thing I found there was Paxton


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 May 22 - 02:11 PM

The forecast is quite hot here for this week, so it's a matter of pacing myself for the outdoor work, and as much as I'm not a morning person, getting up earlier for some of it.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 May 22 - 05:04 PM

Flickr sent another nasty-gram; since I'm not a pro member at this time I can't have more than X number of private photos. I've removed hundreds of photos anyway, but hadn't finished the job. There are few if any people photos - Flickr is leaving customers open to trolling by forcing free accounts to be mostly public. (That's where the old Mudcat Troll did most of his damage, harvesting from FB and Flickr). I've wasted time this hot afternoon sitting here editing groups of photos. Over the years I've gone back and forth, joining Flickr or not. For now, not.

I've walked through the house focussing on horizontal surfaces to clear clutter. So many things have someplace they can be stored if I get around to putting them away. In general if there are objects on surfaces then there is dust also because I don't move things often to dust around and under. As a result a number of things are in the trash now. Must be ruthless sometimes about not keeping everything because it might someday have a use.

It will cool some around 5, so I'll go out and mow the front then.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 09 May 22 - 05:37 PM

Today, I pruned and weeded at home, and had my fangs probed by the dentist.

The rest of the week will be rather busier than I like.

I put on my summer jeans this morning and found them too big. Last summer, I could barely button them.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion's brother Andrew
Date: 09 May 22 - 06:20 PM

Three cheers and a tiger for you, Sis!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 09 May 22 - 09:12 PM

Dupont:

Went off to do errands and have the car serviced. The list blew out the car window when I was driving back home for a book to keep me company. 3 hours in the dreadful chair in the showroom @ $350 an hour! The car is well serviced; I am too exhausted to use the clay I prepped last night. I have, however, made some progress in sorting the stuff we brought from the Mill this trip. Food tonight is, however, from M&M.

This awkward time of year; the house is too cool or too warm. I turned the heat WAY down and have a fire in the stove. Trying to keep it warm enough for him and cool enough for me! BR window open some and close drape to keep out afternoon sun... And door to keep the cool in the BR. Etc...

Managed a stop at Koodo/Telus re the loss of my phone history a couple. Spent an hour on line yesterday trying to get help to NO avail but the nice young woman fixed it in one second. I might know what she did. Not at all sure what I did to cause it.

Went into a pharmacy to buy "222's" for Broome. They never figured out that I was having trouble understanding their words - muffled. But ascertained that these could not be bought without prescription; felt fortunate they did not call police; they seemed upset. Life seems to become more complex every time I go out there...

Got two large brownies at the bakery without any trouble! Put them in the "brownie container and cut them into much smaller pieces - about one mouthful size. We are being conservative!

The range malfunctioned and overcooked the food - not too badly but the window said something about calling for service. Down to one functional burner and now the oven... It's a Jenn-Air $$$$$$$$! I can live without the oven - anyway we are going away for a week! Right now I need to focus on what to take; what not to forget!

Manana!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 May 22 - 03:55 PM

Exercise and fasting today. Hopefully today will budge more than a few ounces at a time. I'm about to mow - a noisy activity that will hopefully disturb Cookie from her vigil at the base of the baldcypress where a young squirrel has been waiting her out. I distracted the dogs but the squirrel didn't catch on that that was an escape opportunity. Those rodents that fail to figure out the easy stuff are destined to be caught by Cookie.

Meanwhile, I set a have-a-heart trap in the front after seeing a mouse or young rat fly past when I was mowing. It's right against the wall; the only thing I've caught so far are fire ants.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 10 May 22 - 07:39 PM

A lung infection responded well to Amoxcilain, whew.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 10 May 22 - 09:55 PM

Dupont:

Never got enough energy to throw pots; put clay in a plastic bin, well covered and with water in the bottom. If I cannot throw tomorrow, hope it stays damp until next week.

Car is mostly loaded. Plans made for my part of trip. R's: I thought we were staying with Broome on Thurs but he/Penny arranged a hotel room - with her points! He added a couple smoked meat sandwiches to his bagel order, and the elusive Zero bars, to requests. R will pick up said foods tomorrow night. Donna is looking for zero bars - in her non-existent spare time! (SRS: might be interested in "The Word" bookstore in Montreal - owned by donna's husband - 50 years in a hole in the wall near McGill campus. On my FB "friend" list.)

Managed to trim a part of the back yard with my wonderful battery powered weed wacker - as the evening cooled a bit. It "only" went up to 25C today - too hot for me. When we get back, I will install the A/C in BR.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 11 May 22 - 04:40 PM

I cut a dozen vines and many more bamboo sprouts (6ft tall).
Now I have to change the weed whacker head and put a new chain on the. I weighed this opal thing and its over 5 lbs.in saw.
My deep red smoke tree looks good with the vining deep purple flowers.
Im on the hunt for a dynamic colored Azelea bush. I need to call the county to remove a dying Linden tree on the curb thats dropping large limbs.

I'm still doing detail work on the Opal Seascape. The next step requires gloves and mask. I have 3 small pictures painted with crushed colored gemstones. I weighed this opal work and its over 5 lbs.
I found a new way to create indestrucible but flexible foliage on the Opal islands.

I ordered a table from Etsy and after the sale an email said the table does not include legs. I said an advertised table but now without legs is called the floor.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 11 May 22 - 04:46 PM

The confusion is not me but my computer deciding where to put my typing on its own.

I'm listening to podcasts of Lex Fridman interviewing scientists. I don't think I can do all 250 hours.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 May 22 - 06:49 PM

One of two boxes for friends and family finally was mailed today. It's large, and I ran into a delay when it came to finding a shipping method - UPS didn't like my account information and locked me out and the other carriers were all pretty high. I got lucky when I went into my PayPal account with this bookmarked link and it let me do discounted shipping. If you use PayPal, it's worth bookmarking that page.

The second box will hopefully go later this week. This is another few cubic yards of stuff out of the house.

It's unusual for me to make more than one trip out in a day, but on my first time out I forgot to take my completed ballot for a May 24 election. I have plenty of time, but now that it's ready, I don't want to misplace it. I have a couple of other things I can do on that same trip. I bought a pound of asparagus today that was more expensive than usual - another customer and I were laughing about the decision to buy gas or buy asparagus.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 May 22 - 10:36 PM

Busy day - and I finally got to the gym to start using the recumbent bike and treadmill. Before the first surgery there was no COVID and the gym was much closer to the house. Now I'll try to get there a couple of days a week. I even managed to get in more than 100% of the steps with my fitness tracker.

Counting Coups: I've considered getting an electronic keyboard because my lovely old upright grand needs to be restored. It is so old that it's tuned a whole note low and is missing the hammer on high C. Today I found a keyboard at Goodwill for $20. There wasn't a power supply or sustain pedal (both plug in) but I tested batteries, replaced on dead one, then hunted through all of my old power supplies for 1A (it used to power a Linksys router.) Plugged in - and it works! I don't need all of the voices or reverb, I just want it to sound like a piano. You have two weeks to try electronics and return them if they don't work. You have two weeks to try electronics and return them if they don't work so I wouldn't have been out anything if it was a dud.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 May 22 - 11:01 AM

Sticker shock - putting gas in the SUV at $4.57 a gallon. Must. Stay. Home.

Finally all of the tiller parts are here. Watering for my side of the street is Wednesday and Saturday so I'll set up the sprinkler early tomorrow and after it has time to soak in I'll use the tiller to finish the garden preparation. In the meantime, I have figured out how to extend the fence another few inches for my privacy area where the potting bench sits now. I guess this is a "just because I can" kind of operation. The fence did originally end right at the driveway edge, now it's a couple of feet shy of it. And maybe it will keep any itinerant shower-takers from noticing the space.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 13 May 22 - 03:40 PM

In southwestern Ontario, regular gasoline now costs Cdn$1.95 per litre, and Diesel fuel is up to Cdn$2.50 per litre.

A litre is a hair larger than an American quart, so that's Cdn$7.80, or about US$6.00 per US gallon of gas.

Food prices have risen to levels I have never seen before: $2.49 per pound is the new $1.49 per pound for apples GROWN RIGHT HERE IN CANADA, and oranges are unobtainable for less than $1.99 per pound. On Tuesday, I paid $12.59 for a modest bunch of asparagus. My heating bill went from steep to ridiculous between January and April. Meanwhile, my investment accounts have taken a massive kick in the arse ...

Thanks to Edmund's Army pension, I'm fine for money. I worry about my car-dependent friends, however, especially those who did not have the luck and/or foresight to marry a soldier back in the day.

Stinking hot today, first heat wave of the year. I weeded and pruned again this morning, and rearranged the clag stashed in the garden shed to make room for the garbage can, which moves out of the garage in summer to increase the distance between the kitchen and the stink of cat-litter gleanings. A set of choir risers was stashed in there about two years ago, and to my surprise I easily moved them single-handed. Now they're stacked in the garage shelving that used to be jammed with Edmund's now-departed camping gear.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 May 22 - 04:12 PM

My modest Vanguard mutual funds have tanked - if I did the math correctly the loss this spring is about 20% of the total from the high. But since they're shares it's better when it turns around again.

While taking a mediation/power nap it dawned on me that the fence extension I'm proposing by adding to the post at the end of the fence would have been better achieved by simply letting the cross-members extend beyond the post position, not cut them off there. Now I'm adding scraps on to the empty half of the post supports and putting up one more picket. I had other kinds of plans when I put it up, and thought the gate would be positioned differently, is why. #LiveAndLearn

Down five pounds.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 May 22 - 11:41 PM

Fence extension completed. I had scrap pieces of treated 2x4 and screwed them onto the 3 support pieces on the last pole (I'd ended the fence at the middle of the post so they were sticking out.) I was able to screw on two more pickets facing the street, giving me 10 1/2" more fence, and to give it a finished look I then attached a final picket to the ends of those 2x4s (at a 90o angle from the street). This way you don't see the last post and you don't see the fence just stop, it has a more substantial look at that end/corner.

The new filter is in the tiller and it's ready to go in the morning. I set up my sprinkler to water those beds after dark this evening (instead of waiting until tomorrow). So I can till early before it gets too hot. Bonus filters: I changed out the air filters in both heat pumps in the house.

I'll wear one of my double-layer masks for the garden dust (these I don't use for public places, just for yard work.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 14 May 22 - 10:48 AM

Australian fuel prices have also risen dramatically!
fuel costs around Sydney - nearest to me is 217.9 cents per litre

I don't drive so am not directly affected - apart from prices in shops etc. I heard a shopkeeper interviewed yesterday say that fright on a container (of whatever) used to cost $9 now costs $25!

Fortunately I have a good pension, but people on low incomes are badly affected.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 May 22 - 06:01 PM

Sandra, you are fortunate! We don't have great rapid transit here, and I have a vehicle that takes the more expensive gas, but I can manage to drive infrequently. Make every trip count, and do as many chores as possible along the way.

Several household chores today to choose from, but as I just walked into the den and realized it was easily 10 degrees warmer than the rest of the house, at the top of the is I have to get the shade cloth or lattice on the patio cover to keep the sun from baking the back of the house.

Visualizing moving some furniture. A lot of it, actually.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 14 May 22 - 06:40 PM

A half a tank of gas now costs $50. Two weeks of groceries 300.
No pool this year should offset inflation.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 14 May 22 - 06:42 PM

I live almost in the CBD, around the corner from the next train station east, & am 2 stations & a short bus trip from the coast. I"m also a 10 min walk from the harbour, tho it's been a long time since I wandered down to here. Most of my activities are just on the other side of the CBD = short train trip (2 or 3 stations) then max. 30 min bus trip. Trains & buses are 10 to 15 mins apart. My part of sydney is well served by public transport.

I have friends who live 20 miles west of Sydney where public transport is not so good. (services are 30-60 mins apart.) Some areas of greater Sydney, especially where poorer people live do not have much, or good public transport so folk need to drive to the station or to their work if there are no connections.

As to downsizing - I did sell half-a-bag of unwanted treasures last weekend! And have taken several bags of other stuff to charity shops recently. I still have 4 more bags in front of my wardrobes waiting to be loaded into my trolley & taken away. As a wise friend said, can I see space? Not really ...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 May 22 - 08:50 PM

I did a quick fix on my patio cover - instead of buying a set of lattice panels (about $27 each, need 5-6) or even buying a larger tarp, I used the 10x12' tarp I bought last summer (still in the wrapper - to set up for filtering out sun on the glass doors). It went up on top, and later on I'll add the longer tarp over it and have a double filter there and shade the door. That bigger tarp is on sale until the 22nd (I have a coupon). The cover structure is warped and needs to be tightened up. Something else to do this summer.

It's time to finally list my eBay items and make space in the front room as stuff sells, as will taking my bin of donation things to Goodwill. I reuse that bin and it lives in my laundry room.

The big money-saver to take care of this weekend is to send in a tax protest to the county - taxes are increasing so fast and the tax office presumes this house is in mint condition. I need to catalog the flaws that I would need to declare if I were selling it, and deduct that depreciation from the appraised value they assigned. I'll have to go to the hearing, but I've learned some tricks about how to do that from a local journalist whose raison d'être seems to be to yank the chains of all of the county taxing entities. This is a gift to my future self.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 15 May 22 - 03:54 AM

Petrol is around £1.62 per litre round here. Trying to convert that, I get it to:

7.48USD per us gallon.
2.57CAN per litre.
2.86AUD per litre.

We had a bit of a shock last week when we needed heating oil, it had more than doubled to £1 per litre. We don't order the oil. Bob next door does that. If we can combine our 600-700L order with his order, the oil company will do it at a slightly cheaper rate as they can do both in one tanker visit. He told me that it was good job we'd not wanted oil a few weeks earlier as the price had shout up to £1.75 before settling at £1.

Our fixed rate electricity tariff ended this month and the best I could find adds about £1000pa to the bills...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 15 May 22 - 04:49 AM

I live in a 1-bedroom apartment & my electricity is under the 1-person household level. I giggle internally when I see the link for Energy Reducing hints on my bill.

My windows are locked open 6" or so, & I use small fans in occupied rooms in summer, & warmer clothes in winter as my part of Sydney is not cold, tho folks further west need heaters, no doubt some/many of my neighbours have heaters. I'm about half a km from the harbour (hidden behind buildings) & have friends on the harbour in a very cold 2 bedroom terrace a couple of kms away who are already using their winter quilt & heater. Folks further west (30-40km) have night-time averages below 10C mid winter. Folks in parts of the Blue Mountains (100km) can get snow.

But I'm ok in my little bit of paradise as winter draws on ...

Today I took 2 bags of useful stuff to my favourite charity shop, a craft shop & came back with 3 small balls of wool! Not that I don't have more than a lifetime supply of yarn ...


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 15 May 22 - 05:15 AM

I don't think brother Tim ever needs heating where he his (Diamond Valley, I think just a little bit inland from the main Sunshine Coast area of QLD) but, maybe he could use A/C he doesn't have. He tells me that summer heat and humidity combination cat get a bit challenging.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 15 May 22 - 09:24 AM

my sister lives at Noosa, close to the water & also endures heat & humidity


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 May 22 - 10:45 AM

An underlying theme in the declutter threads has been how to save money (and the pain of unexpected bills). Emptying our pocketbooks is something we try to avoid. We wince each time someone describes an expensive repair or replacement. Cars some to mind in the last year. Water heaters. Washers and dryers.

One savings I've managed this year is to change cell phone plans. AT&T was close to $70 a month, so I switched to the original plan at TING and dropped to about $33 a month. The company leases access to the T-Mobile network, so I have great national coverage. A few months ago I took a look at TINGs new plans and found a FLEX plan that rewards those who don't use much data. Now text and talk minutes are included in a flat $10 a month. It used to charge as I reached certain benchmarks - number of minutes, texts, or data. My bill is now $18 a month, and if I go over a Gig of data, it goes up by $5. I use the phone mostly on WiFi in the house to avoid the data. That's $52 a month that can go for something else. That's about how much the last tank of gas cost.

It's sad to think Don won't pay to keep the pool up and running - that might be a good alternative to going out for $$ recreational activities. Musical potlucks at the house around the pool sound inviting. And if something untoward happens, turn the potluck into a rent party. :-/


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 15 May 22 - 07:11 PM

I’m utterly exhausted after a long day of singing, at church in the morning, and then the Stratford Concert Choir’s first performance since the 2019 Messiah. Yesterday, I played back-up mandolin for a friend’s violin school recital. And I tidied the garage and raked three bags’ worth of last year’s leaves out of the garden beds.

Definitely enough productivity for a while. Tomorrow is pool class, and then I’ll flop.

My favourite contractor has surfaced again, so I might just get my mouldy bathroom dealt with before the collapsing stock market swallows all my money.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 May 22 - 05:38 PM

I started with last year's letter and added on - my annual tax protest is as agonizing as paying the federal income taxes. When you live in a house for 20 years and do only essential repairs because the others are out of reach, then the tax office needs to stop assuming this house is turnkey ready for someone to buy it and move in. This year I'm trying to push the taxes back before what they were raised to a couple of years a go. I've learned a thing or two (I hope).

Now to the post office to mail my letter to the tax district asking them to send me the information that they will be using to prove my house is worth more - the "comparables" are properties in the area that they say prove mine holds the same value. But if they have a pool, were newly renovated, don't pay flood insurance, etc., I can dispute their choices. And I didn't know that before.

On the same trip I'll make my run for the second tarp and some cheap bungee cords to anchor it into place over the top of the first one I screwed down yesterday.

The AC needs attention, but before I make that call I'll trim the weeds around it and hose out the filters on the outside unit like he told me I should last summer. It might help, and it can't hurt.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 May 22 - 09:46 PM

I posted a sequence of photos on Instagram showing the tarp installation over the patio cover. I didn't want to haul the tall articulated ladder out so I tied a long twine to a grommet at the corner of the tarp, attached a padlock to the other end, and threw it over the top to begin pulling it across. Nudging with a broom stick and a few leveraged pulls I managed to get the whole thing in place. With just the short step ladder and some cheap bungee cords I fastened it to the frame. This is over the top of the 12x10' tarp I screwed down onto just the very top, so the filtering is robust. The new tarp hangs a longer on the west side where the evening sun hits. The house is much cooler this evening.

I had my coupon at Harbor Freight but my size tarp was out of stock; I glanced to the side and found one on a shelf with a tag saying it was an "open box" and priced a dollar cheaper than my coupon. The stars aligned and my house is much cooler.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 17 May 22 - 05:39 PM

A friend took a picture of me tuning my mandolin the other day. It’s the first photo of me since Edmund died in which I don’t look as if I have a headache and can hardly wait to flee.

This afternoon I went through the closets and drawers in search of clothing to part with, and ended up with two huge bags of winter stuff that I packed up to wait for October, and a third bag of hot-weather garments that can go to Goodwill tomorrow. I have to obtain a cardboard box in which to pack up Edmund’s summer hats, and then they can go, too. (Except the UN-blue Tilley he was issued for deployment in Haiti; I need that for gardening.)

I find that I can now let go of some of Edmund's stuff that I held onto a year ago.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 May 22 - 06:54 PM

That's a good measure of healing, the sorting of stuff. I still have things from my parents that I hold onto, though much of it went. And they died two decades ago.

Costco has the wild caught salmon I like and usually has cases of it in view in the freezer. Today there were two nearly-empty cases on the shelf. In case this is a hint of things to come I bought an extra for myself and two for my ex, who asked for one. During shortages I'm fine with various sorts of toilet paper, but heaven forbid we run out of the good salmon!

Today is a regular eating (non-fasting) day so I enjoyed a slice of pizza at Costco. Sometimes you need a dose of crust and grease to keep things moving along.

Another large box mailed today, clearing the path to some other work in the front room. The boxes that Tractor Supply uses for shipping dog food are 24x17x9, so you can cram a lot in them. This box had some rather valuable Oaxacan wool rugs I bought 40 years ago and have never used or hung up. They're gorgeous and it's time to use them. They are interested in using them on the walls there. Meanwhile I still have a couple here and I need to build a new frame to hang up the one, and show my son the plans - it involves using Velcro all over the frame to stick the rug to so it doesn't hang folded or have to be stitched or stapled, etc.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 May 22 - 12:13 PM

The weather forecast suggests that by the weekend we'll be closer to normal spring temperatures and some rain might happen. Fingers crossed!

My den is looking better after shipping stuff, and previously I mentioned moving furniture. If I move stuff into another room, then things in that room have to move. It's a giant representation of that Chinese plastic toy with 35 numbered tiles in 36 spaces.

Now that the patio is in better shape I'm considering attempting a cushion on the wrought iron bench. The question - will Cookie leave it alone? She tears stuff up less often now, but she still has the impulse at times. Which reminds me - it's time to wash the dog bed covers and put the dog beds away. It's too hot for fluffy beds when the tile floor feels cooler.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 18 May 22 - 02:40 PM

How did I end up with dozens of high-quality plastic coat hangers? They’re the kind with broad plastic shoulders that furriers use, and the basement was full of them.

Not any more.

The locker rooms at the YMCA have nice built-in coat racks that are all clagged up with bent and twisted wire hangers that won’t hold a winter coat. Today I asked the guy at the reception desk if the Y might be up for a donation of decent hangers, and the management accepted with enthusiasm. They’re out of here in half an hour, when I head out for a haircut.

Two medium-sized bags of summer clothes went to Goodwill this morning.

I still have a superfluity of hangers, but what’s left is an assortment of wooden coat and suit hangers (the curved kind) that could well be rehomed by way of the spring rummage sale at church.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 18 May 22 - 08:18 PM

The ideal weather made this a fitness day. Mowed, picked up sticks and bamboo sprouts, applied a ceramic coating to the car and started the hot tub up to temp. The tarps and rugs that insulated the tub over winter were put over a future garden area to knock down weed growth.
I threw out inoperative appliances like wet vacs. Did the garbage and lawn refuse. Made soup and I'm winding down while the sun is setting at 8:13 tonight. I got through several podcasts during breaks.
Having discovered Lex Fridman I have over 200 youtube shows to go.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 May 22 - 10:20 PM

Busy, day, Don! I would love to have a hot tub out on the patio, but I'll never get around to putting one in. Charmion, that sounds like a great distribution of fancy hangers. I have the same ol' plastic colored hangers I use, and if I need more I dig in one of the kids closets. My daughter in particular had all sorts of costumes and sometimes I raid that stash.

I moved bricks and furniture sitting on the patio and took the weed-whacker to the edges, knocked a lot of the grass out of the cracks in a brick extension on the west side, then swept it all. To finish, I didn't exactly power wash, but squirted a lot of the worst mud-stained spots off of the concrete. There is a potted plant back on the little square redwood table, and the patio looks a lot larger now.

The bricks go in three places in V-shapes for feeding the dogs outside (so the bowls won't slide), but I haven't done that in ages. I need to teach Cookie how to wait at her other place outside. It'll come back to Zeke and Pepper.

My workout today was accomplished by running the tiller without the rudder or whatever the metal stake is that extends down in back. I removed it as recommended in several YouTube videos, then ran the tiller with just the blades and pulled it backwards to till the raised beds. It's digging and trying to move forward as you pull it back - an effective way to turn the soil down a few inches. It works well but was a lot of work to do that pulling. I'll make another pass in each bed after raking out roots and stems and gardens will get planted this weekend. Finally!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Senoufou
Date: 19 May 22 - 02:18 AM

I've been turning out my wardrobes and drawers, and having a sensible review of many of my clothes. Some of them are rather too 'young and trendy' for someone of my age, and as I'm now much slimmer (size 12) the 'fat lady's ones' will have to go.
Gardening - gaagh! But I've managed to dig up several chunky plants I no longer like. They don't contribute much to the 'cottage garden' effect I'd like to create. So into the garden waste bin they went.
I'm proud to say my garage is now completely empty (except for my little Fiesta car of course), unlike many around here, which are crammed with stuff, so their cars have to be parked outside on their drives.
I think many elderly people become either hoarders, or 'clearer-outers'. I'm in the latter camp.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 19 May 22 - 10:13 AM

As a fellow clearer-outer, I also enjoy the wide-open space I have in my garage where other people keep their hoards of stuff. Every winter, I rejoice in that space as I drive around town without having spent a mauvaise quart d'heure clearing the car of ice and snow. Likewise, the driveway is left clear for the snow-removal people, who scrape it down to the tarmac and thus save me hours and hours of hard labour that I am frankly too old for.

Of all the household services I pay for, I love snow-removal the best, though lawn-mowing comes a close second.

I feel much more ambivalent about house-cleaning, and I now realize that I'm not crazy about having another person having the run of the place. The cat-visitor doesn't go into the bedroom or the study for more than the few seconds it takes to ascertain that the roof isn't leaking and the windows are intact, but an effective cleaner can hardly help eventually finding out where everything of value to me is stashed. Cleaners also grab and drop fragile things that should not be grabbed or dropped, and they apologize profusely but the things remain irreparably damaged. So I guess I'm resigned to the whole tedious business of dusting, vacuuming and scrubbing while I still can.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 May 22 - 10:47 AM

Years ago I experienced several years of using remote storage; after my father died and his stuff stayed locally in storage until I could move it down here. Before Dad's stuff could arrive I went through a divorce and filled two pods. So once I moved into this house I first emptied the pods into a room in the house (stacked up like a warehouse) and then I brought the contents of the remote storage locker and filled the garage. As the remodeling on the house was finished I moved stuff out of that room, and some of the garage stuff came indoors. I swore to myself that I would never have one of those garages that was so full of stuff that I couldn't park inside once I finally emptied it enough to pull the pickup in. For a while I needed a shoehorn to pull in and out, but now it's quite airy in there. Gardening stuff lives along the sides so when the door is open it looks like a garage with gardening stuff, not like a storage locker.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 May 22 - 08:04 PM

I'm about to swap out some worn-out night shirts with some new ones. At the thrift store I also found a nice blouse with 3/4 sleeves, but at home I found it still had a security tag so have to take it back tomorrow for removal. I was planning a short trip to the nursery, so I'll go a little further and have them remove that thing. It didn't make noise when I left the store so it may be one of the ink ones.

Planting the garden this weekend, that's what the nursery trip is about. I have a few seeds started but other things will be bedding plants.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 19 May 22 - 10:17 PM

Dupont:

Managed to throw and trim pots on the Weds and do some weed whacking. Then the trip: Got to Albany, got a bit lost; a nice lady at a garage let us phone Broome for directions. My phone which I was assured had ROAMing did not function south of the border. Had a very late BF with B at a Cracker Barrel - an interesting experience. We had to navigate, holding our breath, through the stinky stuff to a back area without candles etc. The food was Southern.

Then he guided us to the hotel and we proceeded to spend too much time trying to get the phone to work - NO customer service. I ended up paying $1 for some foolishness and the nice tech told me to turn it off and then on...!!! Just like the computer! I messaged them that I was not pleased to be taken in by some foolish "service" that I could ask advice on everything from doctors to lawyers...! Received a message that they canceled the "membership" of $46/month! Tonight I had to phone the bank re the charge on my credit card which was added two days after the message. And the possible double charge for the motel on Monday night - a mere $152 - when we were so tired we could barely see the road. I would have stopped two hours earlier...

On Friday, we went to Broome's house and saw why his wife spends 6 months/year in Edinboro! There was a path through the house - a lovely old colonial - with boxes to the ceiling in every room. Only horizontal surfaces were the bed and a space the size of a bath towel on the K table. There are also two barns, a couple transport bodies and more. He is really trying to get rid of stuff; he told of filling a van with hundreds of albums and selling the lot... it was only a small percentage of what he still has. His wife loves him! We love him.

We got lost in NYS and finally found the PA information center and a wonderful woman printed us directions for the rest of the way south. We even obtained real maps! Unfortunately, we had to phone Ingelora and ask her to meet us at the folk dancing. There I managed to give away a couple nice tops, some folk dance Cds and some printed material on folk dances!!! And a dress I bought in old Montreal in 1969 - Ingelora took that! I even managed to dance a few easy dances and it was wonderful to see my friends.

My son and his partner came to the Memorial and we met her for the first time - very nice. Some special people there for both Taun and myself. He was greeted by the sons of my friend and the parents of his very first playmate were present. We stayed for the lunch, then R and I went to the Twnshp community day because I wanted to meet a woman I liked on FB. Then we re-gathered at my bro's for a late lunch. I gave Taun all the family pictures I still had, including negatives from the last 60 or 70 years that my dad had taken. And the 3 colour sweater I knitted for him many years ago out of good British wool; It had gotten damaged and I thought I still had some of the wool but have not found it in these 15 years so he gladly accepted it, saying that Tenley could fix it. He is still slim enough to wear it - at 58.

Then we went to Ingelora's and chatted some more. I went to bed early. In the am we visited some more; we really like Ingelora. She is so happy divorced, in her own home, near the group home where her son lives. She teaches viola and violin to private students in her music room.

Then we went to the Charlestown Playhouse (nursery school) Clothing Sale - an institution! R acquired three pairs of good quality shoes ($14) and a bunch of books. I fancied a sterling silver dolphin brooch so I sent a pic to Taun to see if Tenley would like it. "She'd love it." He said he would get a nice card and present it to her from me. My son is happy!

R and I went for a quick lunch to my bro's (and SIL) and then met Taun at the house to which he had arrived as a newborn. My father and I, bro and ex built it ourselves. I had forgotten it; the marriage was already deteriorating and when my bro needed to sell his house next door my "husband" insisted we buy it and sell the one we had built with such loving care. My dad and I designed it and being there again after 55 years broke my heart - I loved it so much. Such a beautiful house to raise kids in - open and airy with huge window seat looking out at the trees and down to the small pond.Totally off the road and private. And the family that bought it from us have cared for it totally. The dad is 90 and still a member of the local volunteer fire dept. A lovely man. (Wife died some years ago.) The adult daughter was there to visit with us; we have exchanged emails and are on FB. My other son was her "first crush" when they were in grade school - grades 1 & 2, I think.

Then we went to see the woman who was our wonderful babysitter when she was 12,13... and her partner in her cluttered home in the woods near the village. I drove to the village and tried to phone - NO service! So I stood in the intersection waiting for someone to be driving or walking; sure enough: a woman walking four poodles, and a man who was walking himself gave us directions. Sara told me I did not want to move. She holds memories of that time of my life and shared only a very little in company. I hope to gather a few more. She said she helped me put a foot locker in the car; I must have taken it to Tina's for storage as I did not leave with a car.

So, I have much to sort out and much to get over - crying over the house I loved. And wondering how it all happened.

Monday, we wended our way up through New Jersey to have lunch with a friend of R's and then on up along byways until it was too dark for us to keep on. And more of the same on Tuesday; I decided I had to go to the Adirondack Wildlife Centre to pay my respects to a woman who had been a director and died in January; we stopped in a small lovely town with a beautiful library and a wonderful woman who found us directions, and told us where to get good food; R bought some books and we got the best cornbread ever and delicious soup. We found the Centre and walked the mile long wildlife trail, met the husband and chatted with him and I gave him a small donation in memory. Then we continued on until we arrived in Chateauguay about 7 pm. And early BED!

Weds, I did groceries and laundry, whacked some of the high grass, trying to miss dandylions, and pulled a bunch of weeds. And cooked a meal. Today, I managed to finish getting through the over 600 emails that had built up, sent a couple, messaged a couple folks, spent a bit of time on FB checking on a few folks, called the bank about charges on credit card, tried to fill out a govt form that was totally useless and arranged to get a vote by mail ballot sent here for the Ontario election 2 June. That is the week that was!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 May 22 - 11:05 PM

Dorothy, that is way too much activity for just one week! You have a time machine stashed in one of your Canadian houses, don't you? Your secret is out!

Sounds like a marvelous visit, and I'd love to see photos of that house you loved so much!

I'm glad you sussed the phone scam and got rid of that plan.

Today is W*Y*S*I*W*Y*G's birthday. I hope it's a happy one! Thinking of you, Susan.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: LilyFestre
Date: 20 May 22 - 05:24 PM

Hi All! Just peeking in to say hello!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 20 May 22 - 05:59 PM

peeking in to add my wishes for your birthday

long time no see, how old is your little baby now?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 May 22 - 04:14 PM

More closet clearing, this time in the blouses, vests, and jackets. There are some I'll never get down to that size again, others are styles I'll never wear again. I still have a few obsolete pieces if I need to achieve that look of a white or beige blouse with slacks or skirt.

A couple of weeks ago I cleared out all of the size 8.5 shoes; I simply don't comfortably wear that size any more. I might start the morning in them but later in the day as feet swell they're too uncomfortable. I'm in 9 and 9.5 now. Jackets and shoes and most of the blouses go to Goodwill. There is a bag of silk blouses that I offered to my daughter the costume designer - who says yes, she says she can use silk.

I am slowly dismantling a low wall around a sort of "keyhole" garden bed I built years ago - as I work I'm impressed by how much work I put into it. And struggling to pull out the bottom layer that was a foundation for the rest. I'm 1/4 of the way now.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 21 May 22 - 10:46 PM

Dupont:

SRS! It was indeed. I planned and messaged and got it all organized ahead and the only blip was SIL who kept "not putting any pressure on you but..." The best part was my son coming out with Tenley for the Memorial, and being greeted effusively by my friend's progeny - apparently their mom kept them in touch with my life - and a few other long time no see folks. Taun was glad to see the parents of his very first playmate; I doubt he has seen Jake since they graduated from different high schools at the same time. I was down for T's grad and we went to Jake's, after the fact at Upatinas - the alternative school that started in Tina's lower, walk-out level. Those two and Tina's youngest - a year older - went to the movies together. And Tina and I had a visit. Jake is now in Colorado.

And, I have No pictures of the house and am hoping my son might. I was too stunned to even think of it. It is not large at all but the cathedral ceiling over LR and DR give it an openness and the large windows in the LR and DR - lots of light, and the beautiful trees outside that have grown up wonderfully in the 55 years. I sat on the window seat, looking at the beautiful ceiling and windows and FELT HOME. Taun remembered the window seat and looking down at the pond - he could not have been more than 2, possibly 3. I don't have the date of when we moved out, only Sara's, "You didn't want to move".

Taun, family archivist, appreciated the "treasure trove of pictures" I took him.

I am still recovering. Sorting out a few things, largely in my mind! -and sending emails, requesting vote by mail ballot for Provincial election, and enduring the heat today. Getting back to the piles of papers to sort - so many are really interesting! Too hot today to weed whack but I did pull some weeds early this am, and enjoyed the Allium - purple - just starting and some dwarf purple iris. The Roxanne geranium by the front step has not yet started but it is very healthy, a reminder of Tina who also loved it.

Messaged her eldest son and asked for email addresses for he and sibs so I can sort of stay in touch. First send them notes re their loss. George had told R how pleased they were that I had come. Makes me feel as though I matter, and R feel better about the long time away from work, a gift to me as I could not have done it alone. It was a grueling trip and I don't feel closure as much as I feel stricken by the reality - Tina is gone. The home I loved is unattainable. My bro has cancer and is doing well but, my bro has cancer. His daughter is still a mess. The 3 children of my SIL are doing great. She was a great Mom; she had terrific parents. It matters. So many feelings arising from trip.

I packed up the dry pots made before the trip and cleared the "studio" in hopes of getting more made.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 May 22 - 11:26 PM

Dorothy, we all know that life isn't tidy, and it sounds like you did a lot of catching up and came out ahead as far as memories of the people and the locations.

I harvested my garlic today; it was early and not all of them had bloomed, but the leaves were yellow already, meaning it was time. The house smells like an Italian restaurant with all of those bulbs in a bucket in the laundry room. I'll brush off dirt and sort them soon.

It's wonderfully cool this evening, maybe as low as 60; we've had an entire month of summer temperatures way ahead of time, so this break is welcome. I'll open the bedroom and kitchen windows a bit to let the house cool. If we're really lucky there will be rain this week as it stays a bit more spring-like.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 22 May 22 - 09:14 AM

It’s a rainy Victoria Day weekend in Stratford, and my garden is loving it. Between yesterday’s cloudbursts, I planted two clumps of Monarda didyma (bee balm) from a friend, and the pot of Primula vulgaris (primrose) that the in-laws gave me back in March. Then I dug out the deceased lavender and called it a day.

The same friend who gave me the Monarda has found a new home for Edmund’s baguette pans and fish kettle (poacher) — her next-door neighbour, who is a chef. Maybe he will also accept a couple of bannetons — baskets for raising sourdough bread. My basement is looking tidier by the day.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 May 22 - 09:16 PM

I planted a few peppers and tomatoes in the first of three beds. That involved some digging to finish pulling out roots the tiller didn't grab. After an hour or so I shifted to disassembling more of the keyhole garden. Rocks pried out and moved to the back yard, and a wheelbarrow full of soil dug out and tipped next to a plank that will be the side of the next raised bed. I put cardboard down to kill off the grass underneath. This fourth bed will hold the dirt from the soon-to-be-gone keyhole garden, and I'm planning to plant sweet potatoes in it.

The declutter of the day is that after pulling the laces out of my favorite pair of yard shoes in a long time, I put them in the trash. The soft soles are so thin that I can't put pressure on the shovel without it feeling like I'm digging barefoot. Time to find another pair for the yard. Old shoe laces go in the laundry room for the next time I need a cord to tie or fasten something . . .


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 May 22 - 09:59 AM

Also in today's trash is 1.5 pounds of JennieO turkey breast that is the least meat-like piece of animal protein I've come across since whenever. Too salty and strange mouthfeel. I tasted one corner of it then put it back in the fridge to await trash day. I won't even give it to the dogs. Not spoiled, just weird.

My photo cube (a 3x3x3 nylon cloth cube table tent) is back in the den on the cleared table because I wasn't using it much in it's place in the front room. It can be moved back when I need the table; I'll try to keep just the cube and two lights (that shine on it from outside to give diffuse lighting on whatever is being photographed) on the table, to make the move easy. Working on eBay stuff this week.

I'll be out running errands so the donation bin goes in the SUV. I bring the bin back empty and it lives in my laundry room accumulating Goodwill donations. Easier than leaving them all around the house and trying to remember them.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 23 May 22 - 11:21 AM

The Saturday storm system that I experienced as cloudbursts wrought havoc across Ontario, especially in the Ottawa region, where a derecho effect toppled hydro towers and trees. Stratford was hardly touched — boughs torn off here and there, a tree down on Milton Street — but my brother’s house in the south end of Ottawa is still without hydro power.

I did something I should not have, and the sciatica has returned to my right lower back. It’s mostly ignorable, but unfortunately weakens my right leg so I have trouble spading the garden. I have rather a lot of digging on my agenda, so I am quite irked. Heigh-ho, back to physio.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 23 May 22 - 12:43 PM

Knee pain: If you are going to get a surgical procedure anyway this injection prior to surgury may be for you. https://www.iovera.com/patient?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=patientkol-branded&utm_term=knee%20treatment&utm_co


There are brand new lubricant injections that can be used instead of surgury but since I'm not prescribing research is required.
Many of them use Hyaluronic acid, injections are done with simulataneous real time image scanning


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 May 22 - 07:00 PM

Don, thanks for the information - but it's something I tried without much luck with the first knee. They were a pain literally and figuratively (it is inserted over three weeks, one per week). The knee has deteriorated to bone-on-bone. So while I tried it the first time, I lived with the pain for a longer than needed because of the delaying shots, I'm not doing that again. It's to the point where it's plenty painful and I know how it will go if I don't get it fixed soon. And who knows - maybe not waiting till it's so bad will help with recovery. I can always hope!

When I went out to my volunteer job this morning I forgot the donation bin along with my shopping list and phone. I'll try an evening run now that rush hour should be slowing. I'm trying to get things set enough in advance that I'm not making last minute preparations for a few weeks at home with the PT folks coming in. Time to arrange to pamper myself a little.

P.S. I made an assumption on the name in Don's link - following it I'm not sure what that is about but it isn't something that would make my bony knee feel any better.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 24 May 22 - 11:28 AM

The HVAC guy just left after an expensive couple of hours in the basement. The water heater, a gas-fired instant-on thing installed in 2009, has definitely reached the palliative stage of life-cycle maintenance, but it's good for a while yet. The humidifier needs a new wick of a type that the technician did not keep in his truck -- ain't it always the way -- and therefore requires another visit. Furnace and air-conditioner are fit and healthy, what a relief.

Especially after the expensive adventure of the water softener. Is it too much to ask that only one major appliance should fail in any given year?

The wardrobe reduction of last week resulted in *two* empty chests of drawers, one of which is now scheduled to find a new home. That leaves me with three: one in my bedroom for normal clothes, one in the box-room with clothes (mostly fancy) that I wear rarely but expect to want in the foreseeable future, and the empty one in the guest room for, y'know, guests.

The departing chest of drawers is the only one in the house that is less than 150 years old. It's apparently made of veneered "manufactured wood" (aka pressboard), and it weighs a young ton -- much too heavy for me to move by myself. Fortunately, it's in perfect condition without so much as a cat scratch in the finish, so the Habitat for Humanity ReStore should be willing to take it off my hands.

The box-room is also considerably clearer, and I intend to NOT acquire any clutter likely to end up in it. My long-term goal is to empty it of everything that isn't off-season clothing that I will actually wear when it's in season again, and the vacuum cleaner.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 May 22 - 06:50 PM

My ex called yesterday to tell me about a bill from a large phone company for 4 iPhones (Pro Max - $1300 each) and the extra monthly service plan for gaming data, etc. This said it was the first bill (installment - about $700) and it was in his name to his address. All of yesterday was spent trying to file online, but there were dead ends and they require a police report. Police reports, even online, stop when you can't say where the theft occurred.

This morning I called a local storefront of that phone company and asked what I needed to bring in to set up a new account and get a couple of iPhones. They would do a credit report (so SSN), ID, proof of address, etc. But if the credit report was good enough, the rest wasn't needed. His report is spotless. I explained then why I was asking, and it turns out the store folks can put you in touch with a real person in the fraud dept. My ex came over and we called again - it was a 45 minute call that resulted in an email with a report number he can show if anyone tries to claim he owes for the phones, and it alerts the credit reporting bureaus. He's also set up a fraud alert himself. This ID fraud ripped off about $5000 worth of phones after paying the sales tax at the store. The one satisfying thing? Once she turned in that report, the account was closed and the phones bricked. Nothing will work once the company bricks the phone.

That's exciting enough for today!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 May 22 - 12:03 AM

Charmion, I'm delaying the call to the HVAC guy, but I also have a budget-draining operation coming up soon. Since today has been a day of pocketbook preservation, I had a follow-up conversation with a family member who convinced me that it's time to completely freeze the credit reports. Only open them up if I'm planning a purchase.

Rain! Finally! This will make dismantling the keyhole garden a lot easier in the next week. It's a good mix of native soil, imported topsoil, and soil amendments that will be all softened up. Perfect for sweet potatoes, but they need to go in soon.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 25 May 22 - 09:01 PM

Dupont:

Starting to take indoor plants outdoors. The Canna from last year, having spent the winter in the house! is now out in a large plastic bin, surrounded, to look better, by the hollow chunks of the fallen branch which I will put some other plants into the hollows. Mibni rose bush, doing fine in house, went into a sunny spot in the front garden. On Sunday, I will pick up veggie plants from le Jardin de la Resistance in southern QC. Try to plan a couple visits down there at the same time.

I am pecking away at weed whacking the tall grass and spent dandies, without murdering the wild strawberries or my fine crop of yarrow! The battery is only good for about 30 minutes then a 4 hour charge! But that is enough for my shoulders and back! I may be about half done. The mosquitoes drove me in tonight, impending rain for a couple days.

Construction going on down the road, 100 yards or so. It was dreadfully derelict and then demolished so this is predictable. Will be interesting to see what comes up. Our block is a total mix - old, elegant, small and almost derelict, etc!

Long email to the "girl" who grew up in "my house". See if I can help her with disintegrating marriage. Karen. The misuse of the name Karen is disconcerting - as a pejorative. I know a lot of nice Karens.

So, between rain showers, I can clear planters, etc out of the DR onto bins on back porch. And get back to sorting the papers that have spent enough time in the sunny windows to be tolerable. Switching from winter to summer - finding fans...

Sitting here, wondering how much more of Quebec I can tolerate; the new language law, just passed, is offensive to Anglos and self-defeating for young Francophones. There is no guarantee we will even be able to access health care in English. That is scary.

But for Robin with his complex business, I would stay in Ontario permanently. Yesterday, working in the yard, the woman from next door and the one from across the road, stopped for a visit. I managed a bit of French but Sophia is bi-lingual and helped Luisa and I make rudimentary conversation. I like them both but it is hard work. This aft, I saw Luisa at our end of her yard so did not go out as I just could not! She is going to Portugal in a couple weeks. I will go to Beaver early next week. It is such a relief to be in Anglo land! I would like to sit and visit with Sophia but she rarely comes out of house. This has been a rough couple of years.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 May 22 - 10:29 PM

Dorothy, I was in Harbor Freight last week and at the register the clerk was slowly working through some kind of exchange transaction with two young men. Black, but I soon realized not African American - they were from Haiti. My French is all but nonexistent - I can say the numbers from one to ten, but that's about it now. Then one of them asked if we could habla español - pointing at them, I asked if they'd come through Mexico? "Si." I don't speak much Spanish either, though as the transaction was wrapping up a man arrived behind me who was a Spanish speaker. If I worked at learning some Spanish it wouldn't go to waste here; I hadn't thought about practicing French.

On Facebook fellow Mudcatter Virginia Tam shared an article about lead being in a lot of pre-2005 Corelle. I have quite a bit of it, plates and saucers mostly - and except for saucers it isn't getting used much. I think rather than give it to Goodwill I should probably toss it - it's a guess that it's only a problem if it breaks, but I don't actually know that. Rounding it up will help with some of the crowding in my main kitchen cabinet for everyday plates and cups. I use saucers a lot, so will have to hunt for something non-Corelle to replace them.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 May 22 - 09:28 AM

The dew has to dry on the grass this morning, then I'll strap on the homemade ankle cuff for my fitness tracker wrist watch before starting a workout that shows up on my Google Fit as "walking." It's actually mowing, and because my hands are always on the mower handle the swinging arm of a regular walk doesn't register on the tracker. Hence my shifting it to the ankle to pick up on my steps.

The slow process of moving soil to a new bed will happen some more. And I plan to do some weeding in the front beds and find a place to plant two pots of a new color of daylily I picked up this week. I also have three small potted trees to plant behind the back fence. I need to put them in places where they won't get trampled and where I can find them again to water regularly while they're getting established. And since bulky waste is coming up next month I can take down a couple of the tall hackberry trees that shade things out.

I've been to the gym twice this week, where I don't have a set of exercises, I just head for one machine and use it for an hour. The muscles around the knee are my focus. If, once the knee has had time to recover, we don't have another round of COVID, I'll keep going and I'll broaden my workout.

There is a stack of Corelle on the kitchen counter: dinner plates, lunch plates, saucers, and bowls, gathered from around the room. The bowls and saucers need replacing, the rest I think I can live without. I would usually buy more at Goodwill, but I suppose it's possible that other vintage plates (different pottery, not the Corelle recipe) could have problems also. It may be time to buy a few new. I wonder how Fiesta ware stacks up? I have one of those and could find a few more at estate sales, etc. The largest plates I use mostly for food preparation; a chicken can thaw on a large plate, or cut up ingredients sit on one prior to cooking. Paring down the stuff in the kitchen is a good thing in general, I'll just replace part of what I'm removing now to the pieces I most frequently use. (Next week I'll be at my favorite Goodwill, so I may be able to find something there - they actually end up with antiques regularly, and I think that's where I picked up the Fiesta ware.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 27 May 22 - 10:17 AM

Speaking of water, Nestle has circumvented an 1882 law that said the the great lakes are public and are not to be siphoned off to private entities.
Also the world's ground water that has been pumped for 50 years to replace the polluted or non existant water has now reached the level of economic depletion. Its getting to deep to drill.
If you thought gas prices were manipulated, the water crises will make pandemics look microscopic. Water wars are nothing new but water world wars (www) may threaten Canada and Brazil as water predator nations look thirsticly at the two top fresh water countries in the world.

Black gold will take a backseat to blue gold.
It is said societies will survive with 2/3 of the near 8 billion people were to suddenly expire. However it would be better to have water catchments everwhere instead of dams. Then abandon the areas that are natural deserts.

Now were off to the Memorial weekend water park before it becomes half pee by August.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 May 22 - 10:59 AM

I have one of those survival "life straw" filters here in my emergency stash, should I need to start drinking the water from the creek behind the house. I also know how to make distilled water using pots I have here.

There's a healthy stack of Corelle in the kitchen now. I've found new replacement bowls and saucers on Amazon, so I may trade the large stack out (to the dump, not to Goodwill) for a small stack from Amazon.

All financial institution cards in my wallet now have alerts, at least email and sometimes text, set up on them. Next, freeze the credit reports.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 27 May 22 - 12:33 PM

My sciatica has improved enough that I can use a spade again, so I transplanted two small shrubs that need more sun.

Apart from that, I’ve been kinda idle.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 May 22 - 01:18 PM

I bagged the Corelle in two used tough white shipping bags from Amazon, taped them shut, then dropped the stack into the trash with the sound of breaking crockery. If it isn't safe for me to use, no one else needs to either. I ordered six bowls and saucers to replace them and will be able to remove the wire rack in the cupboard that straddles the plates. No need for a second tier now.

It's hot again, but I'm headed to a shady part of the yard. First, to dig around under the juniper that is filled with tiny bagworms, showing that the shrub is in stress. It was planted too deep so I need to clear soil away from the root flare and let it breathe. Then spray it again with Bt to kill the bagworms. The soil that comes out of there will go into the bed I plan to extend for more flower planting.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 May 22 - 05:17 PM

How's the sciatica after transplanting, Charmion? Still ok?

I try not to use paper towels very often, so I tend to use a lot of really REALLY old terrycloth wash cloths that were new when the kids were little. We used them as napkins for the kids. Then around the house when they got so ratty they couldn't be used in polite company (and new wash cloths replaced them). Today I pulled an old t-shirt out of the recycle bin, cut it up the size of the old wash cloths and sewed together three layers - two of jersey and one of wash cloth. Turned it inside out, zigzagged around the seams, then crossed it a couple of times with straight stitches. This is a triple-layer rag for cleaning in the kitchen that can soak in dish soap or a little bleach water and go through the wash. Wash cloths by themselves don't absorb a lot, but these will do a lot better. It's an experiment, I made two.

I got the idea from some "as good as 1500 paper towel" products being advertised on Instagram. Why pay $13 for three when I have raw materials here?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 29 May 22 - 08:22 AM

Sciatica continues to ebb, and the transplanted rose of Sharon bushes are doing fine after two days of rain, some of it torrential.

Remember a few days ago that I wrote something about the unfairness of more than one major appliance conking out in one year? Well, the television is making ugly noises that indicate imminent speaker death.

Life is cruel.

Yesterday, I went to Best Buy in Kitchener and bought a new one.

Guess what? A 32-inch TV, once large, is now “small”, and it is very difficult — practically impossible — to find a good-quality device without Internet capability. If you live in small-town Ontario, you are doomed to disappointment if all you want is a TV that connects to an antenna or a cable network, and peripherals such as a DVD player or a streaming box.

So now I possess a so-called “smart” TV that boasts a 43-inch screen — still “small” by current standards. I may want to watch it from the porch.

It was obscenely expensive, especially for a gadget that will inevitably be superseded within the next ten years. And it must be “calibrated” to ensure that the screen renders colours correctly, a process that adds $100.00 to the already extreme price.

I did not buy the extended warranty. My appetite for spending is completely exhausted.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 29 May 22 - 10:08 AM

I've never heard of a TV needing to be calibrated in some way other than what the instructions tell you to do when you take it out of the box. You can avoid some of the smart stuff by not connecting it to the accounts it suggests.

My "big" TV was purchased probably 15 years ago now, a plasma screen that is 40". (Bought on time from Dell, on sale - paid off within a year to avoid interest.) Whenever I go through the front at Costco I walk past all of the humongous TVs, of which this would be on the small size. Did you look at someplace like New Egg or Amazon? My go-to place for electronics used to be Fry's Electronics, but they suddenly shut down a couple of years ago (though you saw it coming any time you were in the store with the scantly stocked shelves.) Next to Fry's is NewEgg.com for good prices (and reviews that are helpful). I know - "Now you tell me."

Mowing this week was completed, front and back. Now out to the garden.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 29 May 22 - 12:15 PM

NewEgg Canada has no TVs smaller than 55 inches. A TV that size I would have to watch from the driveway. Also, the prices look consistent with Best Buy, which has a real-world store where I could see the goods and measure the feet to ensure the thing will fit where I want to put it.

I looked at Amazon Canada, and got much the same result. Small TVs are available there, but none at an image resolution standard better than 1080p.

As for Costco, I’m not a member and I don’t plan to join.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 29 May 22 - 09:30 PM

Dupont:

TV? Some years ago, we graduated from the impossibly heavy old TV to a flat screen - not huge. R connected it to an aerial and we get 3 English channels. I can also connect my computer to it but so find it hugely helpful. My son did fix me up with Apple TV and I can access a great number of programs that we enjoy. It has helped my sanity through the Covid.

Corelle: never have had a single piece.

Yard: Making progress on the weed whacking. Today came to realize there is some Wild Parsnip - a seriously toxic plant. I whacked it from a distance - lengthened the handle to max. Will not go to that part of the yard for quite a while. It is "way over there", not where we usually do anything at all. I have preserved a sizeable patch of yarrow - cutting the grass above the yarrow.

Today drove down to southern QC, took Rita a few pieces of rhizomes of a beautiful yellow iris. Then picked up my order of plants at the Jardin de Resistance. Managed to get some in the ground and do more whacking before the mosquitoes drove me inside.

This week: Cleared the back hall of plants and their fallout, cleared some of the china that was homeless into homes and some into "to go". Laundry caught up. House is tolerably tidy and clean; would like to do better.

Thought I would leave for Beaver on Monday but plants need planting! Then, this moment, I realize R has a major event on Tuesday so I shall stick around to see how that goes.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 30 May 22 - 06:12 AM

fwiw, I did find a couple of 4K 32" tvs on Amazon UK but they don't seem no be common. Would you really get any benefit from the step up from 1080p with that screen size anyway?

I think our (Sony 1080p) tv is 42". I don't think it will be replaced until it breaks down. I think we would go a bit larger next time, maybe to 50" - I don't think we'd want to go bigger than that.
Ours has Internet but it's almost never used. Our connection is too slow and we'd never be subscribing to services like Netflix.

I was looking at even smaller (24") tvs the other day. Dad has become more unstable and erratic at bed time. After a very close shave a fortnight ago, I decided I could no longer move him safely at that time. We are using the temporary council service for that at the moment but a permanent provider could mean him going to bed at 7pm rather than his preferred (and which we certainly wouldn't get) 10pm.

I did put a (I think) 12" tv in there on another occasion when he had to go to bed early but it does seem a bit small viewed from the other end of the bed. I reckon I could use a wall mount with an arm and have a 24" tv toe end of the bed and feel that would be nicer for him. I'll have to see what happens with future arrangements and what dad finds he wants first.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 30 May 22 - 07:22 AM

To my surprise, I managed to extract the new TV from the car, move it into the house, unpack it from its e-NOR-mous flat box with internal styrofoam, and set it up — all by myself. I did not believe my arms were long enough, and the instructions clearly show the lifting and manipulating tasks done by two people, but everything turned out okay and I did not strain my back.

For an encore, I rolled up the parlour carpet (another cat attack) and hauled it out to the garage for the cleaners.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 30 May 22 - 08:10 AM

Oh well, I've just had an interesting one here. Dad somehow managed to get his right hand trapped between the outer rim used to propel his wheelchair and the spokes on the wheel itself. I didn't even know that was possible...

I managed to free a couple of his fingers but one was stuck, looked like it was swelling, and I couldn't try to yank it free. Fortunately, using a hex key to remove the screws holding the wheel I could get to with him sat on the chair, I managed to get him free.

I was wondering if that had failed though whether a hand trapped in a wheelchair would be an ambulance or fire brigade job.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 30 May 22 - 08:25 AM

Jon is the heroic fireman in this case.
Just finding the correct hex tool is hard enough.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 30 May 22 - 11:37 AM

I have sets, Imperial and Metric, of hex keys in "the drawer" in the kitchen where I also keep a few screw drivers, a rubber mallot, lots of spare parts to things, door and lock keys, etc. When you need one, you need one, and shouldn't have to search for the right one. Good job, Jon! That would be an unusual entry on the fire brigade log sheet.

I've ordered an $11 roll of rubber and polyester 3/8" elastic tape and have two sheet sets that need refurbishing, everything is good except the elastic on the fitted sheet is shot. That will be one of my quiet tasks during knee recuperation next month. I'm looking for other things as well that can be done seated with one leg up.

The rest of the tomatoes were planted yesterday and I've moved more soil from the keyhole garden to the new bed. Surreptitious watering last night (after dark, it wasn't my day to water) on the old garden will soften the soil for moving more today. It's an American holiday, Memorial Day, so I can be out there looking like I'm digging a grave in the front yard. :-/

The trash guys may have been surprised by how solidly heavy my trash can was this morning, and tossing contents into the truck will have finished the job with the resounding noise of breaking crockery. But it feels good to have that change out finished. I also finally dropped off several bags of sweaters and blouses that I never wore at Goodwill. My closet feels more friendly now, like almost everything in there is usable. I kept a couple of fancy dressy black sweaters that can go in the "loan to a visitor" category. I'm sure I'm not the only one who has a few light jackets handy in case a guest needs one? And I think it's time for my largest pair of yard jeans to finally go into the denim stash in the sewing room. The thighs have worn through and they can't be worn in public any more, even were I to gain back the weight I hope to never see again.

Dorothy, I hope the drive to Beaver is good and all of your pots and gardens are waiting for your attendance! Charmion, when I got the large TV I looked up information about comfortable viewing - it never seemed good to put a TV way up above the mantle, for example. I downloaded a copy as a PDF with headers and footers so I have a URL for you: TV Viewing Distance Guide More than just a matter of personal preference! Treating it like a theatrical experience and putting it directly in front or a little bit below, like in the theater, makes it feel more comfortable. Good luck with that! (This is an updated version of the same article I picked up when I first got the big TV.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 30 May 22 - 08:11 PM

Dupont:

Defeated by mosquitoes, and the dropping barometric pressure, not much planted, nothing whacked. Hope tomorrow is better. Did clear a bin load of not too big jardinieres out to back porch rather than the floor of the DR. I just needed some energy and impetus, as in "I can't take these in here anymore!" Still some plant related stuff to clear into another bin and more but the heat beat me. So I spent the afternoon on line - a major hissy fit between two rehabbers (on FB) needed major intervention. They sorted themselves out pretty well but the interference from "I hate people" types was nasty. Mudcat Sing ... was a nice distraction after the anguish.

It is time to hook up the A/C in the BR to see if it works! And get R to open the attic door so the heat can go out the heat chimney.

And put away load of laundry, make some food... Off I go!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 30 May 22 - 08:14 PM

I have a sturdy little oak TV stand properly designed and built by the Mennonites, who are not noted for their consumption of popular culture but know what they’re doing when they make furniture. The screen is at eye level when I’m sitting in the comfy chair, and it’s on the opposite wall a good eight feet away. Any closer and my eyes hurt.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 30 May 22 - 11:02 PM

It sounds like you landed on a good level and distance with your table and chair placement. I forgot about that new furniture piece - I imagine the new TV looks good on it.

The whole garlic plants stood in the bucket since I dug it all last week, so tonight I cut them apart and put the bulbs in a flat cardboard box (like cases of cans come in) so they can dry some more. The garlic smell is really strong in here right now. I came in when the mosquitoes started bouncing off of me - I put mosquito dunks in all of the small watery areas that I can find, but I need to keep that up. Too bad garlic doesn't drive them away. I made several trips back to the compost pile today, but always carrying things or pushing the wheelbarrow, so my fitness tracker didn't show that as steps today. My body feels the effects of a lot of digging and lifting. I need to put the wrist watch tracker in an ankle band (I've made a couple) for the steps to show more accurately.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 31 May 22 - 04:58 AM

I keep sets of metric and imperial hex keys indoors too. I also have sets in my shed but I don't want to go outside to fetch them or move them between locations.

I got myself new sets for indoors last month. This was triggered by me losing a couple of keys that came with a 3d printer. I didn't have any before but ball end ones are a lot easier when (as is the case with the fan cover on the printer) accessing the screw slot in a straight line is difficult.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 31 May 22 - 10:46 AM

A bush by the back west corner of the house has erupted into bloom for the first time since I've lived here. I had no idea that it would produce long trusses of pink and white flowers, so it was a candidate for extirpation. I think it's a cultivar of Weigela florida .

About two weeks ago, I spent a frantic half hour in that corner, right beside the air conditioner, slashing about with my trusty secateurs. A great mass of dormant or winter-killed English ivy was thoroughly tangled in the very dead-looking lower branches of this quite undistinguished bush, which I pruned ferociously in the hope of revealing the gas meter. If I had had a spade to hand at the time, or been less in need of a beer, I would probably have dug out the bush there and then. So, two cheers for procrastination.

Another piece of furniture is slated to leave the building and, with any luck, it will depart tomorrow. It's a tall chest of drawers, of the type known here as a "lingerie chest", that Edmund and I bought from a naval officer in Ottawa when Edmund's collection of fitness gear was overflowing into plastic bins. (Edmund had the largest chest of drawers in the family, but he always bought copiously and rarely parted with anything that wasn't actually reduced to a rag.) In style, this item is most things I dislike about modern furniture: a sterile, formal design executed in fake materials, mostly plywood from the weight. I'm glad it's going.

It's stinking hot today, so I plan to stay in the house, at the computer, and grind through the production and distribution of reference materials for the Annual General Meeting of the Stratford Concert Choir. The AGM will be my last task as President, an office I have no desire to hold one hour longer than necessary.

In future, I will be the choir's librarian, responsible for issuing sheet music to the choir members at the beginning of rehearsals for each concert, and recovering the music (and putting it away properly) after each concert. This is work I can do in my sleep, and it will put less strain on my limited diplomacy skills than the presidency does. I will also be Secretary of the Board of Directors, so I don't have to read inept minutes. To my credit, I have managed to wheedle a highly capable individual to accept the presidency, and I hope she reigns for years and years.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 31 May 22 - 11:22 AM

I have a pack of those loose hex keys, not sure where or when I picked them up. They might have been my Dad's (I have a lot of tool duplication with what came from his house, stored out in the garage tool drawers.) The ones I use most often are attached sets. I loaned the loose Allen wrenches out before expecting to never see them again and they came back, whole set. This from a friend who can't find all of her spare house keys so keeps having new ones made.

Did you know that if you lose a dozen pounds it can look like a lot more on the scale? From the low 190s to the high 170s means you lost all of the 180s and a little bit more, but what a boost to the morale! Now 25 more to go, hopefully this year. The surgery recuperation period will present a time when I expect (hope for) a plateau (and not gain this back).

Found a pair of too-big navy slacks in the closet that still have the store tags on them, a missed opportunity when I was heavier to have worn more than just jeans. Those slacks were from back when I was still going to work every day. I think what is helping this alternate day fasting is that I've fully switched over to eating a lot more fruits and vegetables, and trying to vary them every day. Over the last few years I wasn't paying close attention to the non-fasting days and combined fasting (~500 calories) with eating lots of bread carbs on the non-fasting day makes it go slower and lose interest. I'm sticking to 1200 calories on my non-fasting days now.

I'm making progress on moving the soil between garden beds. When I built that garden I did a mix of adding good top soil, humate, and amendments, and am seeing this is beautiful garden soil still under the Bermuda grass, so am looking forward to using it again. I still get weeds in the raised beds, but I can move the planks and weed it or till it a lot easier. The rock-edged bed was much harder to maintain.

Charmion, I finally identified a mystery shrub that I almost trashed, it has been growing in a pot near the mums and mint and such on the side patio. I finally remembered that when I was planting the American Beautyberry out front I found a sprig of a shrub in the pot beside the bigger one, and I poked it into another pot to think about putting it somewhere else. And forgot about it. It's almost as large as the first one now, but hasn't flowered yet (a main reason for the mystery.) I paid $40 for the first plant so this one is a bonus. Now I'm glad I didn't dig it out of my pot, but where to put it? Meanwhile, I've planted one of the small trees behind the fence in the back 40 and ran a hose through the fence down to it. Now I pour a gallon of water down the hose every other day without having to unlock the fence and wade through weeds to reach it. I have two more trees to plant back there but I'll pace myself, one at a time until it's a bit established.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 31 May 22 - 01:38 PM

Same ol hedging, mowing and whacking yesterday and today. a Cambodian bamboo shoot shot up 35 feet before it even sent out branches like a flagless flagpole. It managed to hide when it was little.

A recent rose bush loves its location and has profuse large old fashioned circular UV bright Red iridescent flowers with yellow centers.
My vision is shifted to more reds and UV blue so this variety looks amazing to me. This is not unusual for nordic folks. When German U boats signaled with UV lanterns they did not know the Scandinavians could see them directly. I would prefer the mutation of four dedicated color cones in the eye rather than the usual 3 but thats impossible. Only women get that mutation.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 31 May 22 - 08:56 PM

Dupont:

I had Charmion's "stinking hot" yesterday and little happened here. But with some help from R, the DR is now clear of myriad pots and "saucers" now in two bins on the deck. Still some DR stuff which has not been homed as there is no room left in two very large china cabinets; need a plan B which includes mutual decisions about what can go to thrift shops.

My Weigela, is just starting to bloom; it is about 10x 12 feet and thoroughly hides the South window in the LR. Looking through photos on phone, I see full bloom on or about 20 June, so early this year. Yes, it does look scraggly at some times. The Canna that wintered in the den and back hall - Sunny! - is already starting to bloom in it plastic bin in the front yard - surrounded by the lengths of fallen limb - just the right length to hide the bin.

Today was lovely and I managed to get many things planted but still have a number yet to go. No whacking done. The different body movements - planting vs whacking - have me aching. Whacking seemed to be improving back and shoulders. Planting is achey! Still hope to finish planting tomorrow so I can go to Beaver on Thurs. I have a very low tolerance to mosquitoes! A friend sent me a pic of her mosquito gear! She lives on the edge of a swamp.

Took a lengthy nap today after eating nap inducing foods. Hope to remember not to do that again. My gut is still unhappy. After a nice salad for lunch... It will be interesting, but prob not exciting to see how much I weigh when I finally get to Beaver.

R has admitted to a Youtube addiction as the reason he is not getting home until 11pm. I suspected it was not all work and addressed the issue with some annoyance. "Come home and use my computer!" For some reason, he has not made friends with my old one even though he took it to the city to get help from Eph. I shall have good cause to speak to Eph about it; he convinced R to borrow my precious car today for special occasion. I shall relax when it is safely home! My pristine Prius.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 01 Jun 22 - 12:25 AM

Since I tossed my old yard sneakers I wore my steel-toed boots in the garden today, and was astonished to look down and find the soles had crumbled and it was down to the leather on both boots. In the course of an hour. Must be defective materials! I have had these maybe 5 years, and don't wear them often. I'll see about having them resoled with Vibram and keep them going.

I offered irises to a friend who wants both colors I thinned recently, and today when I posted about a small vitex tree I don't need, she also wanted that. So I'll be delivering plants on my long run through the eastern half of the county. All three of these offerings were things in the way or that seeded themselves (this tree sprouted in the pot two years ago and whatever else was planted in there died. So it became a potted tree by default.) I think we're both into xeriscape gardening (plants adapted to dryer climates) that survive benign neglect. These two plants are the stars of that kind of landscaping program. :)

I'm pushing myself to get a lot of things in the ground and mulched so they can survive the time I'm hobbling around with a bandaged knee. I can get to the faucets to turn on sprinklers with the hoses already in place but I shouldn't be out in the garden weeding or anything like that. Probably won't feel like it.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 01 Jun 22 - 10:56 AM

The supernumerary chest of drawers is gone, adopted by the large & lumpy brother of my favourite furniture repair guy, himself a large & lumpy individual. While they were here, they hauled a teak three-seater sofa from the rather small parlour to the much larger library-cum-music room upstairs, and brought a dainty walnut-framed settee downstairs to grace the parlour.

My father’s favourite chair (and mine) has also left the building, but it will return in good time with freshly re-glued joints and more comfortable upholstery. That repair won’t be cheap — it seems that nothing good ever is — but it should set the chair up for at least another generation of reading and staring at the goggle box.

Now that the tumult and shouting are done, the house still looks full of furniture.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 01 Jun 22 - 11:31 AM

That's handy, that they would help you move stuff. A nice repayment for the donated chest of drawers!

I have a Mission oak rocker that needs reupholstery; it's probably 100 years old and has had a couple of layers of upholstery attached over the original. The quote I got just before COVID was $750. I decided the other chairs I'd kept to possibly reupholster also weren't worth it and gave them away but kept this one. And will do it one of these days.

Meanwhile, I have a pair of Timberland boots that suddenly lost their cheap made-in-China soles yesterday and have found a local place to repair them (maybe - he has to look at them). I expect it to cost at least as much as I originally paid for them, but the uppers are fine. Resoling means I'll have a durable pair of boots for many years to come.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 01 Jun 22 - 12:20 PM

Speaking of planting I cleared an area beneath the purple smoke tree and added 100 pounds of raised bed soil for the planting of exotic morning glories. After the soaking storm tomorrow I will plant the seeds I have soaking. I've done this before and it looks great through September. As you know the seeds are full of LSA ('amine' instead of diethylamide). It's already noon and too hot for me to mow. I will indoor mow - - vacuum instead.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Jun 22 - 11:17 AM

Just don't pile that soil up against the tree trunk. Leave the root flare exposed or it will suffer. The flare is part of the trunk, not the roots, and in trees planted by landscapers it is the number one reason why trees have problems.

A little rain overnight, barely measurable, but I'll take it! This morning is nice and cool. The next few days will be a push to move more garden soil into the new raised bed and get it planted. I'll retrieve free mulch from my city source and have it ready to be ignored for a couple of weeks (watered only).

We have episodes of night time barking I'm trying to nip in the bud; it takes sharing the training collar between the girls alternate evenings. I have to research replacement batteries in the collar because it doesn't seem to hold much of a charge lately. The other night I put the collar on Pepper and in the wee hours I heard Cookie start to bark, then a yelp, then nothing. I think Pepper corrected Cookie on the barking, because she knew someone could get zapped for it. A night decluttered of barking is always nice.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 02 Jun 22 - 03:35 PM

I planted by the dark of the moon and will get a shower tonight.
The tall bamboo sprouts in a bin were so heavy I had to use a handcart.

There was a time when doing the vacuuming was considered an aphrodisiac. Now its dija get the cat box corner?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 02 Jun 22 - 06:04 PM

I wished for a little rain and got a socerer's apprentice deluge.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Jun 22 - 07:41 PM

Isn't that how it often happens? I can hear that music in my head now!

I didn't think far enough ahead this morning when heading out to a doctor's checkup or I'd have included a trip to the gym and taken the boots over to the shop that might be able to resole them. I'll do those two things tomorrow since they both put me in the same part of town, and there will probably be a couple of other stops in the area. After I call to make an appointment with the AC repair guy. I've cleared enough brush out from around the unit that he can work on it. Again. He was here last year at the same time. It's a 20-year-old unit; fingers crossed we can get it up and running again.

I scored my first batch of fresh Olathe sweet corn on the cob of the season, and will have some for dinner. I'm still buying produce because so far I'm only harvesting herbs from my garden. I haven't planted corn for a while, but it's fun and charismatic to have a few stalks out there. Maybe I have a seed pack that isn't too old to plant.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Jun 22 - 04:06 PM

We got that "Sorcerer's Apprentice" downpour last night. A few places lost power and some flood alerts were posted. I have to go back and see if the creek is any clearer. I need a kayak to launch regularly to pick up trash washed in from upstream.

It's too humid out for laundry to effectively dry on the line, so it will go into the box of hot air in the warmer-than-usual house. Next week the AC repair guy arrives. Alas, it isn't my normal guy, he died in March "after a battle with a sudden and aggressive cancer." You see a guy every year for 20 years and he becomes a friend. I had the thought that he might have retired and Googled him, only to land on his obit. Now I need to find another shop that has the same honest approach to repairing the AC and doesn't try to sell me a new one each visit.

The weight is slowly dropping. My two doctors' visits last week both happily noted the change. I'm getting most of my exercise in the yard, but am being careful not to get more fire ant or chigger bites - an infection near the surgery knee could delay the procedure. I have more work to do on the keyhole bed with tall grass (where the chiggers are), so I'll take the trimmer out to cut it before I do more digging.

In case you wonder:
Chiggers are the immature stage of certain mites belonging to the family Trombiculidae. More closely related to spiders than to insects, chiggers belong to the class Arachinida, along with scorpions and ticks. In Texas, the term “chigger” commonly is used to describe the parasitic larval stage of mites in the genus Eutrombicula. These common mites cause most of the itchy, summertime bites that occur after walking outdoors through grassy or brushy areas.

Several species of chiggers occur in Texas, but only two are troublesome. One, Eutrombicula alfreddugesi, inhabits disturbed grassy and weedy upland areas and may be encountered in overgrown briar patches and along the edges of wooded areas. The other, Eutrombicula splendens, prefers moist habitats such as swamps and bogs, rotten logs and stumps. Even within favorable habitats, distribution of chiggers often is spotty. Chiggers may be concentrated heavily in one spot while virtually absent nearby.

Chiggers of the genus Eutrombicula prefer birds, reptiles, rodents or other small mammals as hosts. Although chiggers readily bite people if given a chance, humans do not make good hosts. Chiggers often do not survive on humans more than 1 or 2 days, because of people’s adverse skin reactions and scratching.

Chiggers hitch rides on people who walk through infested vegetation. They grab onto shoes or clothing and typically explore a host for several hours before choosing a place to feed. Chigger bites are most common in areas where clothing is tight or where skin is thinnest. Bites are most common at sites around sock lines on the ankles where socks fit tightly, around the waist and near the groin. Bites also may occur in other areas, including behind the knee and under the armpit.

Another reason why living in the South can be troublesome.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 05 Jun 22 - 10:20 AM

The last Howard Johnson Restaurant closed today, they used to be everywhere. For Canadians that is like the last Tim Horton closing.
The other thing that seems to be gone is the idea of a concrete honesty.
It has been replaced with the perception of truth as the most important fraudulent honesty of today. WWII ushered in perception of truth in a big way but it has evolved into something so monsterous it may soon rival the Third Reich lies.
Today even my own appearance is a lie. Having to stay out of direct sunlight for a lifetime, with no melanine protection, I have aged me very little while other people my age have white hair or any hair, wrinkles and look ancient. Only below my eyes betray my age. Today I have to go into the attic and tend to my self portrait, mow and hedge again. Maybe I will cut a large dead branch off a devil's walking stick tree today.
It makes wicked looking canes.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Jun 22 - 10:36 AM

Good to hear from you again, Dorian!

Two days ago we had a heavy rain and yesterday was incredibly muggy in the aftermath. Higher temperatures today should remove more of the moisture in the air.

The rain removed a back yard tree that was hanging over the edge of the bluff over the creek. I'll have to walk around from the neighbor's yard to take a look at the bluff profile and figure out how stable it is. Did the roots pull out, making it dangerous to walk near? I suspect they snapped off, leaving the ground above intact.

Two more garments turned up in the closet that won't be worn any more. I also dug through my dresser. There are some things that needed tossing and others that I probably will never fit in again (or won't wear if I could) that are in the donation bin.

It has occurred to me that since my son has described voles being a problem at his house (complicating the mowing process, if you hit the mounds) I can help. I have a bag full of hair I combed off of the dogs that I put in my garden; I'll send him some. Share the wealth! You stuff it into the access tunnels of the animal pests (I try to keep rats and mice out of the garden with it.)

I need to retrieve more free mulch (it'll be a steaming pile of shredded tree trimmings now, after the rain). I can start putting okra in the garden, the seedlings have grown a few leaves and are ready to be moved. If I can have the whole garden in place this week then I'm content it will take care of itself for a little while after.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 05 Jun 22 - 09:20 PM

BEAVER!:

Friday, having finally planted all the veggies and told R he was on his own, I left for Beaver. Got here about 4 and was in bed by 6 - until about 8 am! Then rather late in the game, I phoned R to find out when and where the Celebration of life for his friend was. Took me a few minutes to find vaguely suitable clothes and dash away. I was about 30 minutes late but it went on forever! I, of course only understood one sentence in the hour of a dozen, apparently quite good commentaries. Robin was glad I came and we stayed for another hour for a bit of food and a lot of conversations - mainly his. I only met this guy once for a few minutes but had the sense he was special. Those who had known him thought so too. Then I drove 2 hours back and managed to stay up til 8 pm.

So far I have weeded most of the raised beds, arranged to have the GRASS mowed and fetched cash from the CU to pay for the expected firewood and the grass. Tomorrow some errands.

Lots of columbine volunteers in full bloom. Missed the daffies. Strawberries in bloom and starting to set fruit. Lots of blueberries on the four healthy bushes. A ton of sorrel which I have not yet had the guts to trim to eat! Picked and cooked rhubarb and realized - NO sugar in the house! Tomorrow! I'll add it, re-heat it, then freeze it to take to Robin. Need to put netting over berries tomorrow!

Huge quantities of trees down along the road up but none near here and it was nice to find the house in working condition! IF the electric was off, it was not for long; the freezer is fine.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 05 Jun 22 - 09:29 PM

Mulberries are ripe and plentiful. Blueberries are fattening up and raspberries are last in line.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Jun 22 - 10:03 PM

Dorothy, your remark about not knowing if the power had been off reminded me that I haven't heard from my battery backup for a long time. I evidently forgot to install the software when I rebuilt the operating system, and now that it is installed it can't find the device. The USB cable is connected. Maybe when the computer reboots they'll do a handshake? I can program it to do various things, and tell it how long to stay on before it shuts down the computer if the power is out, etc.

It also used to tell me any time the power went out, and it occurred to me if you had an uninterrupted power supply with the same software it could email you when the power goes off and back on. Something to fuss with another day. At least I've identified that it needs attention, but get in line!

My newest raised bed is near completion as far as moving soil from the old bed into it. I picked up more free mulch today that will be enough for other beds, I'll have to make another trip for this one. I disturbed a healthy large (in relation to its species) rough earth snake (about 12" long) in a shovelful of dirt. It lay on the new bed quietly and I carefully tossed soil over it. I still have more soil to move from the old bed, and that will go on top of the other beds in areas where they aren't planted or mulched yet.

After our big rain a couple of days ago I think now is a good time to use my burn barrel. I'll pull out the papers I want to get rid of and set up the bricks in the morning.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Jun 22 - 11:08 AM

Years ago when I built the keyhole garden I was using limestone rocks hauled from the back of the back yard. They were tossed there before I moved in, when a large planter adjacent to the front porch was torn down, and in with the rocks was a lot of crumbly dark-gray mortar. I tossed bits of the mortar into the soil mix as I built, but I really don't need it around. As I come across it now I toss it to one side and each time the trash is picked up it's a little heavier than usual as I get rid of a few pieces. I'll be able to keep this up for quite a while.

This week I must trim the vitex tree in the front yard; the hard freeze a couple of years ago damaged it and I can see now where the dead limbs are. I'll use a saw on a long pole and slowly cut them by hand. Next week they'll be picked up. If I had a heavy-duty chipper I'd keep it all here to use in the garden. I can chip the slim brances with my little electric chipper.

I did a deep dive via Google Scholar on some research and came across several interesting articles about how hard on the environment "fast fashion" is. For a long time I've wanted to make the point that fibers should be recycled just as much as plastic, glass, corrugated cardboard, and paper. You can make some really great paper with recycled cloth fiber. In these journal articles they discuss how the manufacture of fabric and garment materials is hard on the environment, not just the dumping of unwanted garments at the end of their life cycle. Most of the articles were open source and there was one PDF book on the subject. This makes me all the more determined to fix the elastic in the queen-fitted sheets and keep them in service. If they went to Goodwill they might end up headed to the dump. And to fix the soles on my leather steel-toed boots, not toss them.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 06 Jun 22 - 04:17 PM

I have hauled more stuff out of the cellar to the garage for disposal. This time it’s rolls of carpet underlay, the kind made of recycled rubber, that is now so old that it’s depositing a fine black dust wherever it’s laid down.

Thus, I have a trip to the dump in my immediate future. That leaves me looking around the property for more clag so as to make the trip worthwhile.

Last week I went to the theatre three times, including two first nights. This week it’s the dump. Ain’t life grand?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Jun 22 - 05:34 PM

I was astonished to see men in ratty pickup trucks come by and take all of the carpet foam mats when they were out at the curb. My contractor twigged me to that when we were pulling out the 1970s shag carpeting - he said they are able to get money for it somehow. It has been 20 years, I don't know if it's still the case.

More mulch picked up this afternoon but it's too hot to work right now. I think it's supposed to hit 100o today. I patiently await the air conditioner repair guy.

Late lunch of a chicken pesto pasta (this is a regular eating day) and dinner will be salad. On an impulse I picked up a diet Pepsi, supposedly still doesn't use Aspartame (it didn't used to) in the fountain drinks. It will keep me awake tonight, but it was nice. I haven't had a soft drink in probably a year.

My gift to the dogs this year will be a new galvanized tank, the same length and width as the current one, but shallower. The Lab used to get in to cool off but the current one is now too tall (for his weak hips). The other two will just drink out of it. I tried an inexpensive kiddie pool and Pepper demolished it very quickly, so it must be metal.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Jun 22 - 07:23 PM

Have you ever walked past a mirror in a store or seen yourself reflected in the glass doors and had the reaction "What was I thinking?" I need to sort my pants and shirts by size now. I've lost almost 15 pounds and that's enough to make today's large t-shirt that I've happily worn for several years look incredibly baggy. And the pants, while they fit at the hips, have gotten weirdly baggy around the legs.

Today the boot repair guy pronounced my Timberland steel-toed work books unrepairable. They aren't stitched, so are a "glue job," and even sanding off all of the midsole, apparently the glue won't hold with the replacement of the midsole and sole. They have had a couple of other pairs come in and with those results they won't accept Timberland for repair any more. I stopped by DSW on my way home (after an hour at the gym) and picked up a pair of Puma slip on sneakers that will now be my garden shoes.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 07 Jun 22 - 07:50 PM

Beaver!:

SRS: DSW?? As for any tech stuff -- I cannot deal with what I already have! Glad you were reminded!

Plumb wore myself out and Monday was a day of rest - reading and just resting. in nightgown. That is serious resting.

Today I went to Home Hardware for netting, tomato cages - for Dupont, and a good pair of hand grass cutters. Put netting over strawberries and blueberries, and cut all around areas that I do not want Steve to mow - cut part of clematis last year. They are wonderful. I will take them to Dupont - Put them in the "Take to Dupont" pile. We have had 24 hours of gentle rain; hopefully it restored strawberry plants I disturbed by vigorous, much needed weeding. It has been a couple years since I was here to harvest berries!

Stopped at the bulk store for a small quantity of sugar for the rhubarb and it is now in freezer in small containers. There will be more in a few days.

HUGE bumble bee just outside the window enjoying the large comfrey just starting to bloom!

Greatly hoping it will be dry enough for Steve to mow tomorrow- and he has the time. More rain is forecast! It is so lovely sitting here looking at the leaves fluttering, I forget I need to finish with the internet stick before it costs $$$!

Hoping tomorrow I will have the energy to get potting.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 08 Jun 22 - 12:15 AM

Dorothy, I added a link to the store in my post. It stands for something like Discount Shoe Warehouse, they have stores all over the place. A Facebook friend suggested a shop that will work on hard-to-repair shoes and boots, though it looks like they mostly work on boots with stitched soles (these are glued). I'll give them a call.

I have a lot of mowing to do, and the weather is just going to keep getting hotter, so it'll be a morning task. There isn't much dew on the lawn early with this weather. And I'll need to keep the garden mulched and watered enough to survive this early heat wave.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 08 Jun 22 - 05:33 PM

The boots were pronounced dead yesterday, and today my AC unit was pronounced too old and expensive to fix. It's a 2002 Freon unit and Freon is expensive if you can find it. Since it apparently leaked, there is no point in trying to test this old system to then try to find ancient replacement parts. For now, it's off, except to blow air, and I'll get a window unit for the office and come fall will consider what upgrade can be made. Let's hope there isn't a third time this week. I don't want to live a charmed life.

The AC tech told me that the gas they're using these days, R410A or Puron, will also be phased out, so waiting isn't a bad idea, to see if there is something I should shop for that will have some staying power. RS-53 (R470A) is the next refrigerant coming down the pike.

Alas, while he was working he trod squarely on my Texas star hibiscus. I fear I won't have as many flowers this year, with the biggest one biting the dust.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Jun 22 - 06:04 PM

A portable air conditioner unit is on order—buying an air conditioner in hot weather is not my first choice for shopping. I made a decision based upon a combination of articles about these units in general and by reading some of the reviews from certified buyers in a couple of sites. I also went by a store and looked at what they had on hand (not much). It's still a crap shoot. Getting it and having it set up before the knee goes under the knife is the goal; if this first one doesn't work it will be returned and I have a second one I would choose (returning the first would happen after recovery but within the 30-day limit).

A catastrophic machine failure is a great way to loose a night's sleep. I had to conclude that I'll work on what I can do something about for now (the temporary cooler) and I need to actually write up a replacement plan for some of these things to do them before they fail. Both air conditioners, water heater, those are big ones. Fix the bottom end of the sewer line before it backs up again (the new part is sound, but the bottom end is where tree roots still get in and cause backups). The foundation is the biggest one and that won't come first. Sometimes the house just grabs you by the short hairs and you have to struggle to fix it without getting hurt in the process. I'll work on a plan.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 10 Jun 22 - 10:58 AM

I shed the presidency of the choir in favour of taking over its library, only to find that the MacBook Pro in which its records are kept hasn’t had an update to its operating system since 2017. That’s like never changing the oil in your car.

So it’s in the hands of the local computer genius, who promised its return by tomorrow. Fingers crossed. I want to run a database on it … not possible with an antique OS.

Meanwhile, I had to do a major security overhaul, changing most of my passwords because Apple Mail won’t tolerate any password that even resembles one used on Amazon. That took a ridiculous amount of time to complete, and some of the gadgets are still complaining.

Despite the continuing ache in my back, today I intend to visit the dump. But first — to Canadian Tire to purchase a new tarp! There’s no way I’m loading all that crumbling rubber carpet padding in my nice, clean car without something to keep the fall-out under close arrest.

House repair is a constant theme here, too. My mouldy bathroom is getting worse — the mould has migrated from the shower wall to the toilet, where it grows on the underside of the seat and must be kiboshed with bleach every week or so. Remediating that mess will cost what it costs, and it’s increasingly urgent. I just made another appeal to the contractor, this time by email.

I don’t even care any more about making that bathroom all stylish and modern; I just want it fully functional and not a public health hazard.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Jun 22 - 11:41 AM

I hope the MacBook Pro will take all of the updates. Over that period of time you're probably talking about new versions of the OS. I'm a Windows desktop user myself, and with the current house heating and cooling issues I've resumed nightly turning off of the computer. I usually just tell it "sleep." But it generates enough heat that I don't need it melting itself down.

A friend offered the URL of an online boot repair site to consult regarding the soleless Timberland boots, but they have gone out with the trash. I'm not fussing with a second opinion. I did some reading and will try Wolverine at some point in the future; for now, the slip-on Pumas that I bought earlier this week will serve as my yard shoes and I'll be careful when using the big mattock. This one has a pick and and adze and can do serious damage to a novice user. Since I've had one of these things around since my teens working for the Forest Service, I'm aware of the damage they can do.

The dogs need baths this week, at the rate of one dog per day. There is a good screen in the tub drain to catch all of the hair, but since it's so hot I can simply use the garden hose and do it in the yard. This is in advance of people coming into the house for the next few weeks. I'll also vacuum the whole house and mop the floors where the latest round of dried muddy footprints are in view.

The new AC arrives on Monday, and will be allowed to stand upright for several hours before it is put in place. I'll have no way of knowing if it was transported on it's side, and the coolant needs to settle into the proper position. I'll have to work out a drain for it (probably a bucket, but I have the existing sump from the defunct AC - I wonder about running a line out the window and putting it into use.) As it is, I need to look at where these are plugged in. I have a suitable heavy extension cord to plug this in on a different circuit than the computer equipment. So many considerations.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 10 Jun 22 - 07:48 PM

Beaver:

It took a week for me to get the energy/inclination to pot. Today: threw about 15 pieces. Yeah I could count them but didn't and now at the library using the free internet.

Glad to have made some pots, I went into get out and push mode. Reading and a nap filled the aft. Then I pulled some weeds, clearing a space in a raised bed for potatoes that have sprouted. Need to do more but the bugs were nasty.

Picked up 3 books at the library yesterday; have finished 1.5 do have to hit the library again tomorrow for a couple more; it will be closed until Tuesday.

Today was clear after gallons of rain for 3 days. Hoped for the lawn to be mowed ... but not! It is still hovering about 70F so not too hot for me. I need to put on the screen doors but hesitate to fetch them from the back shed through the tall grass (knee high).

Finding myself feeling so much better here than at Dupont. Pondering what could be done to make Dupont more to my liking but the main thing is the air is different here - seriously different. Also I feel safe and have friends; I get to see and talk with friends - not just the staff at stores!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 11 Jun 22 - 02:29 PM

Dump run complete. Hurrah for me.

The Stratford municipal dump has an employee whose task today was to supervise people like me who bring their trash instead of putting it at the curb on garbage day. He went through the load, telling me where to put each class of junk. Corrugated cardboard here, metal there, textiles in bins, genuine trashy trash in the dumpster. Nice guy, great tattoos, endlessly patient but firm. My tax dollars at work!

The choir’s MacBook Pro is ready at the computer place, and I can’t find the power cord for the hand vacuum I just had repaired; maybe the vac shop guy has it?

Maintenance never ends.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Jun 22 - 07:04 PM

107o here today. Time to set up the sprinklers (and maybe run through them while they're on!) Cookie gets a bath in a few minutes, we'll both enjoy that! I'm going to relocate the stock tank onto the patio so it's in the shade all of the time, keeping the water cooler. I'll put a chunk of old hose out there to use to drain it over to the base of the baldcypress. That tree thrives every year from the water in the tank being cleaned and refilled.

With it being so hot there are no two-days-in-a-row for jeans, though that's ok. I'm trying them on and finding many of them to be too large and setting them aside. I'm eyeing the storage boxes on the upper shelf. For now I'm trying on Capri pants. I don't wear shorts much any more, or at least, nothing very short.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 11 Jun 22 - 09:25 PM

Ah, yes: what to do with fifty-mission legs in a youth-obsessed culture! Between the scars and the broken veins, it’s hard to find any part of my undercarriage that doesn’t look like the aftermath of a flak attack.

A few years ago I bought a pair of loose linen trousers with a drawstring waistband. I get an unpleasant rash when the summer heat and humidity hit their peak, so I wear those with a south Asian-style cotton shirt that I can sweat through without regret. In June it’s usually still cool enough here for a quilt on the bed and a jacket after dark. July and August can be scorching hot in Ontario, but not all the time and it’s over by mid-September. I would not do well in Texas.

Over the next week or so I intend to empty out the bins of really old clothes — my grandfather’s McGill sweater (circa 1907) and Great-uncle Alfred’s tails (1917!), for example. It's time to get ruthless; that stuff will never be worn again and it’s time to stop storing it. If I stiffen up my spine and buckle down to the job, I could clear the shelving in the basement and give the bins to the Mennonites or the Sally Ann.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Jun 22 - 10:36 PM

The knee repair next week will be during really hot weather; I don't know if the bandages will fit under the slim hem of a couple of my Capri pants, but I may have a couple of other pair tucked away. I have to look around. I'll take a loose pair of fleece pants in case others don't fit.

eBay is a place that has buyers and sellers of vintage clothing, if you want to sell the old garments, or give them to someone who can do it. I sold some vintage WWII clothes of my mother's some years ago. (I don't keep most of that either. I am not a museum.)

Two dog baths down, the last one tomorrow.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Jun 22 - 11:21 AM

Down 15 pounds over about 7 weeks of working on it. Still setting aside jeans that are too loose or need the cuffs rolled because they're too long.

I have an old electronic Orbit hose controller (you program it to when you want to water, attach to the faucet and turn on the water. It only lets water run out through the attached hoses on schedule. There is a bypass to get water from the tap other times, I have to set that up next.) That Orbit piece cost enough that I was extremely annoyed at the puppy who two years ago chewed exposed wires on the hose attachment parts. I found replacements for cheap on eBay and last night put it back together and programmed it. I'll wrap it in such a way that the now adult dog can't reach the wires if she still feels like destroying something.

107o again today. That's 41.7 Canadian. Ugg.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 12 Jun 22 - 01:13 PM

Fifteen pounds in seven weeks is a lot — more than two pounds per week — but your soon-to-be-surgical knee will thank you for every absent ounce.

My wonky foot hurts far less now that I have shed more than thirty pounds, although it still bugs me with toes crossing (blisters!) and pressure where no pressure ought to be. I’ll never wear cute shoes again — unless, of course, I acquire a palanquin and a team of bearers — but I can at least walk briskly without limping. I call that a win, and well worth the minor hassle of monitoring everything I shove down the ol’ pie hole.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Jun 22 - 10:29 AM

I've finally gotten it into my head (and most importantly - habits) to start planning the meal around what fruits and vegetables are fresh in the fridge or on the counter, and then look for a source of protein. Of not eating bread more than once a day (or even every day) and pacing myself with the higher calorie foods. A slice of pizza on an eating day, at lunch, means I can work off most of it and have a chef salad (light) for dinner. This is the alternate fasting process, and I imagine after the surgery recuperation (when I hope to simply maintain whatever weight I'm at) that I can finish losing by winter. I have to just keep eating more fruits and vegetables, not go back to my old grazing through more complex carb filled meals every day. I mostly eat fish and chicken these days, and less than I used to (I am supposed to eat more during the knee recovery period).

The garden process is a little wonky this year. I've had projects that kept me from doing the work as early as I might have, and now I have to work to keep it alive during the heat we're under. I plant some things later in the season now to avoid the usual spring pests (cucurbits mostly). I made lots of pickles a couple of years ago and would like to again this year, if I can get the cukes in. And this year I plan to make a lot more tomato sauce. You can make it after the fact with frozen tomatoes, but truth be told, the best time to make tomato sauce is right when they've been picked and you steam juice then separate them.

This weekend I baked (yes, in the heat) a couple of large sweet potatoes and made an extra-large batch of my kidney bean recipe (eaten plain or over rice). It means I'll have extras for my helpers who will be here for a few days. I imagine we'll do birthday takeout on one of those days (the ex turns an incredibly old number I never envisioned being when I was a young person.) Oh my - just a year younger than each of my parents were when they passed away. That's a sobering thought. His parents lived at least a decade longer than mine did, that helps.

Air conditioner arrives sometime today. The plants in my sun room are a bit cooked these days, as is the garden. Hand watering the garden today, only 102o forecast as the high. Summer is a week away, ♬ tra la ♩ ♩ . I have Swiss chard seedlings that I will plant today in a shady area of the front yard, near the hose stand so they will be watered any time I use the hose. I love spinach, and I love chard eaten the same way (steamed with vinegar). This summer is such a scorcher we can eliminate the steaming process and let them cook in the ground. :-(


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Jun 22 - 10:51 AM

The Labrador retriever got a bath yesterday, and it loosened all of the hair in his coat that was going to come off this summer. At once. I have a couple of brush things to use and will have to attach him by his leash to a post outside so he'll stay put and let me comb it out. It's a chocolate lab explosion in a dog hair factory this morning. But he is quite frisky, they all are. They tolerate the bath but they love the outcome.

I've reached my weight loss goal for this surgery, so will stop the alternate day fasting for now and just maintain a daily count of around 1200 calories (probably about 1000 when I'm sedentary after the surgery). The really high heat has made this easier than usual, because just taking needed big drinks of water during the day helps keep you feeling less hungry. After the surgery I have 20 more pounds I'd like to drop (maybe 15 - it depends on how the weight loss shows in my face.)

This isn't cooking weather, but needs must when you score a lot of good cheap produce. Last night I blanched and froze the contents of four bags of "baby spinach" for about 8 servings. And I had four containers of small mushrooms to sauté then freeze. Bounty from my favorite discount grocery. Lots of fruit also, nectarines, mangos, and a honeydew melon.

For today, the new AC is ready to set up and I need to work in the garden. I have a couple of trips to run, and might get in a trip to the gym (Silver Sneakers congratulated me on 25 visits - really? It must be at this location because I know I've been to the company's gyms more than that since I joined the program. They pay for this nice gym membership.) Charmion - my next goal, after the knee heels enough, is to finally get into a swimsuit and take an exercise class in the gym pool.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 14 Jun 22 - 10:59 AM

GFY That took discipline


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 14 Jun 22 - 01:14 PM

Stilly, you will find lots of similarly scarred company in the locker room. The aquafit class I go to at the Stratford Y looks like an event for veterans of orthopaedic surgery.

Another trip to the dump today, this time with a load of clothing and household linen for the textile recycle bins.

Among the condemned items are Irish double-damask table napkins worn to holes and/or stained by hard water. Who still uses napkins that must be ironed? The fancy modern steam iron Edmund bought six months before he died has no setting for linen and doesn’t get hot enough. Another appliance that doesn’t do what I need done, dammit.

I kept four linen tablecloths, including a hand-embroidered one made by my grandmother and her sister sometime during the reign of Edward VII. Don’t know when I’ll ever use it again (it used to come out for Christmas), or where I would get it laundered in this day and age — it’s much too big for a domestic ironing board. But I’m not ready to part with it yet, or the lace-edged tray cloth that matches it. When did you last see a tea tray laid with a linen cloth? When I reel my memory back, I find myself in the mists of the 1950s with the rector on a pastoral visit.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Jun 22 - 02:35 PM

Thanks for the heads up on the pool occupants! I haven't been at the gym dressing room when participants are preparing for a pool class, but I won't be surprised.

I have occasionally set the table with fancy table cloth and cloth napkins, maybe once every 5-10 years. Invariably someone spills something on it. Wine and cranberry sauce are top contenders. :-/

I'm glad you're able to recycle textiles! That option is woefully lacking in any of the centers here.

Next trip out to do with the portable AC: a 25' 12-gauge 15-amp extension cord. I'm going to plug it into the outlet inside the AC closet opposite my office door, then it won't trip the breaker for the office. I know they say don't run it under carpet, but I'll get a door mat for the hall to put down so no one trips on it, and wend it around the wall to the new AC. If this was a larger unit (over 15,000 BTU) it would need 20 amp. Harbor Freight to the rescue.

I did the extra brushing on the Lab and there was a flurry of fuzz dropping to the ground. I picked up some of it so they don't track it back into the house. If it were nesting season the birds would be pleased; I used to find old birds nests in the back yard lined with hair that came from my Catahoula-Blue Heeler mix Poppy. She shed a lot and the birds loved that long soft hair.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Mrrzy
Date: 14 Jun 22 - 05:32 PM

Went through my mess o' individual winery wine glasses and got rid of all duplicates, made about a half-shelf of room and my glasses are now vaguely organized.

Did the same with my shot glass collection. Also now organized.

Prompted by my getting some souvenir shot glasses this trip, and not having room for the new ones.

Am starting to acquire old-fashioned-sized souvenir glasses; the room on the wine-glass shelf will be appreciated.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 14 Jun 22 - 06:39 PM

I have emptied nine large plastic storage bins that I refuse to refill with household clag. To my delight, Habitat for Humanity wants them.

Tomorrow I will scrub the grotty ones and, as soon as they have dried, I will load the lot into the car for delivery to the ReStore.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 15 Jun 22 - 09:53 AM

Heat warning today: forecast high of 32 degrees Celsius, or 88 degrees American -- a mere bagatelle by Texan standards. It comes with a high likelihood of thunderstorms, however, and the humidity is correspondingly high, generating a Humidex of 41C. In short, not fun, but typical for mid-June. Things don't get horrible until the night-time low temperatures consistently hover above 20C.

A burglar alarm technician is on the ground this morning. As security companies look for new services to offer, their systems expand with new capabilities and new potential problems. My system includes smoke and carbon monoxide sensors that beep relentlessly at the slightest provocation, and fail surprisingly often. This always happens on the weekend, when the B team is on duty at the monitoring station. They promise to refer the issue to the tech support team who will call on Monday. They never say which Monday. The sensor crapped out five weeks ago.

Today's mini-crisis is ending well: the sensor had a five-year replacement guarantee with two more months to run. Sweet!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Jun 22 - 11:51 AM

That reminds me to change the backup batteries in my wired smoke detectors. Something else for my growing list (but not for today's list). Why is it the battery always pops out easily but needs a shoehorn to put the replacement in?

I pulled out dog records and see that two of them are due their shots, though rabies are up to date. The village used to schedule a pet shot clinic every summer but haven't since COVID. More stuff for that other list.

Today's lunch will be roast chicken on a bagel, haven't had one of those in a while. Much of the rest of the day's dining will be fruit because I got kind of ahead of myself and everything seems to be ripe right now. Must make room in the fridge.

Good work on clearing out all of those bins. I hold onto them, I always seem to find some new way to organize. Sometimes they end up with garden soil and plants in them out beside the kitchen door, after drilling a few drain holes. That is truly the end-stage for any bin.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 15 Jun 22 - 12:30 PM

I intend to avoid acquiring any more stuff that might find its way into a bin, Stilly. Also, I enjoy looking at the empty space where a bin used to be.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Jun 22 - 11:12 PM

I have a little list (Gilbert and Sullivan wrote "I've got a little list," but it would have been more grammatical my way) and all but one item are crossed off from today. Now let's see what I forget to take.

That last item is an extra anyway, to read the the new AC manual and set it to turn on and off by itself. I already reprogrammed the big house unit so it will cool a bit more than usual (I usually adjust it manually during the day) so the dogs will be comfortable.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Jun 22 - 10:25 AM

My Physician's Assistant happily told me of the comparison of my opened up knee in situ to the Xray (they always make note to help interpreting future Xrays). "Yup! This one is completely worn out!" When I first saw the doctor about my knees he said the worn state made me "knock kneed." That is no longer the case.

Looking forward to a weekend with family here. The house got a good cleaning this week, the dogs are clean (no having to wash hands after a pat) and the fridge is supplied for me and guests.

I'm still making cloth masks and will make another few to give my PA, because they use theirs a lot (I have taken them masks on most checkups over the last 2 years).

If I was still working I'd have 4 weeks or so at home, but everything I do these days can be done remotely, so not much will change, except not driving to the museum to volunteer.

By phone, Room 319. Heading home in an hour or two.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 17 Jun 22 - 01:58 PM

Today I start working my way through the congestion in my study closet. It's the last concentration of unsorted -- in fact, not even looked at -- boxed-up clutter in the house.

Easiest is the last boxes of Edmund's papers, which have only one destination: the shredder. But first I have to check with the nice lady at the Law Society of Ontario to get permission.

Next come several boxes of miscellaneous office supplies, of which the bulkiest are a stack of three-ring binders, rather a lot of plastic page protectors and a stack of yellow legal pads, all of which can be immediately Freecycled.

That leaves the boxes of photographs and negatives. One is full of commercially prepared slides from museums and historic sites my parents visited back in the day, and I have decided simply to chuck those. The rest ... Dunno yet. I'll think of something.

I must go to Canadian Tire to buy a folding work table that I can move around the house by myself. I have a really good "table, six-foot, folding", but it's in the cellar and too heavy for solo shifting. With enough effort I can move it upstairs, but getting it back down again would be much too dangerous. I've done it once, so I know!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 18 Jun 22 - 09:12 AM

On the plus side: Most of the Freecycle-bound clutter is spread out on the work table in the basement. The boxes of papers to be shredded are sitting on the study table. I found the box of shredder bags that I had misplaced.

On the other hand, I had put out of my mind just how many boxes of photos, negatives, albums and slides are stashed in there.

It occurs to me that digital photography has liberated future generations from this task.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Jun 22 - 09:37 AM

Digital photography means our computers and external drives are full of files to keep track of.

I wonder if the slides would be of interest to crafters. Lampshades and window covers via Pinterest. My scanning project at the museum has me in the middle of a bunch of slides taken for research by two area artists. They photographed art in books and used them for ideas or to to calculate the positions for the figures they were painting (wanting to have a modern rendering of the classics). Except for the fact that these are two famous artists, they probably would have been dumped. Here is an eBay take on the selling of old slides.

I have a closet in my office that sounds much like your study closet. Lots of paper that should go, but when I dive in to look at things there are interesting ideas - but will I ever follow-up? Probably not.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 18 Jun 22 - 05:58 PM

Today I went to the big mall in Waterloo in the hope of buying a pair of ordinary straight-legged Levi’s blue jeans with a zip fly and no damage. Epic fail!

The only jeans in stock that were in my size and did not come with factory-fresh holes in the knees were retro 501s complete with button-up fly. I remember those from 1968, when one wore men’s jeans or did without, and they were not convenient. Fly buttons vanished for good reasons! The twenty-something vendeuse understood my distaste for the back-from-the-dead 501s, but I failed to convince her that pre-stressed jeans are not a good look for a lady of a certain age. “On you, it’s fashion, but on me it would look more like negligence,” I said, departing.

So I invested more than an hour of driving, with gas at Cdn$2.10 per litre, to learn that the LL Bean website is my best bet.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Jun 22 - 07:05 PM

Charmion, you would love the thrift store in my neighborhood. I haven't bought new jeans in 20 years (though they're new to me so it feels the same as new). 90% of what they sell is clothing and there's something for everyone there, and I always find great pants. (This building used to house a large grocery store. It's huge.) With all of those vintage jeans to poke through, there are always several pair that fit perfectly. It's easy to come out with five or six pairs of jeans for $20.   

Thrift stores are the great anonymizer of used clothes. I always feel a little odd looking at clothes at estate sales because I'll know who used to own that particular garment. Not so with the thrift store. Odd? Probably. (I had some hand-me-downs from neighborhood kids when I was growing up, and lived with the embarrassment of knowing that other people recognized the dresses I was wearing as having belonged to someone else.)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 18 Jun 22 - 07:26 PM

Beaver:

Yard is de-clutttered of knee high grass etc!!!! I felt as though it was the Cavalry when I heard Steve's machine! There is still more I would like done but he did the most important stuff, including path to the wee bridge. (I'll post a pic of bridge on FB.) He will do more when he has time and keep it from getting away again, and stack the firewood!

The resident ground hog was enjoying the cuttings this morning! I suspect it was around before but the grass was too high to see it!

Then I fetched the screen doors from back shed and they are ready to hang; seem to have misplaced one set of screws but it is cool enough still that tomorrow is fine! I rarely come to this thread without finding a reminder! This one is to check for an empty bin in back shed for stiff that needs storing in shed - from house - for winter.

Also feeling I have made pretty good progress getting rid of stuff here. There is a great deal on its way out when
I decide to where? Not risking taking anymore to my friend the hoarder as we do not want the Carriage House to get more cluttered!

Managed to complete the mugs but need a few more pieces for an order. I have just spent two beautiful days doing little more than reading and watching the leaves dance to the music of the wind.

Trip to Dr: probably hernia - appointment with dietician - I'll give her a chance though I am doubtful; and someday in the future an ultrasound here in Bancroft. For anything more complex, a trip of 60 miles (each way) is required.

I am hoping #1 son's co-habit will like some lengths of fabrics when they visit in late August, celebrating her 50th. She still sews.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Jun 22 - 05:31 PM

When the doctors instructions say you should have someone stay with your for 48 hours after returning home from surgery, they don't take into account that when it's family you're liable to overdo rather than just kick your feet up. I managed a compromise, and spoke with the PT supervisor yesterday and got some helpful hints. The ice pack takes two large inserts that go to mush very quickly and it is huge and saggy, so I'm just putting one pack into the case and that works better. The calf-squeezing things slide all around. Not comfortable.

The medical folks probably didn't expect me to make a birthday coffee cake this morning or make small personal pizzas for lunch, but anyway, everyone has headed home and now I will relax some more. PT starts tomorrow.

After a phone conversation with her partner my daughter asked me for a COVID test; since the partner wasn't feeling good she figured they both should take the test so I'd know if I had anything else to make me miserable. Everyone came out negative. That's the reason for keeping a few extra boxes of these things around.

This is the strangest year; it's like we catapulted directly from May to August. Hot as hell out there and no sign of it letting up.

Dorothy, good luck with the hernia diagnosis.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 19 Jun 22 - 08:01 PM

Before surgury how about an old fashioned Texas sand bar party.
#1 check out a sand bar at high tide. don't forget sun block.
#2 Bring enough wood for a good bon fire.
#3 bring enough food and drink.
#4 Leave by 8PM

Remember its easier with a boat.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Jun 22 - 08:39 PM

Parties at the beach were fun when I was a kid. Always had to watch out walking barefoot in case someone just threw sand over the fire to put it out. More than once I've gotten a burn. Now I live on a creek and I suppose if I didn't mind how closed in it is down there, a barbecue on the rocky beach would be possible. Around here people put chairs out in the driveway or open the garage door and sit inside in the shade. Rather than setting up a picnic the creek is the place to take a bucket and a pry bar for digging the fossils all around.

I'm happy with the shade tarps I put over my patio; they're attractive and effective. I have enjoyed sitting out there comfortably some afternoons and evenings.

Today I said good-bye to a 10-gallon nursery pot with three lantana plants that I transplanted out of the back yard lawn so my daughter can put them in pots at her house. The roots were so robust that it didn't take long before they revived from being dug up. She'll have flowers soon. They're popular here while they're invasive weeds in Australia. I've been mowing them for a while but they keep coming back.

The heavy-duty pain killers applied during surgery have worn off all around the knee and I'm keeping track of meds on a notebook page in the kitchen. And after four days the magnesium has kicked in - thank dog! I was warned, but still, when your guts grind to a halt for a few days it gets your attention.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 20 Jun 22 - 08:13 AM

I went out and played at a session yesterday. Edmund would have loved it.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Jun 22 - 09:57 AM

I was thinking about the two of you yesterday, Charmion, as we celebrated my ex's birthday. When is CET's birthday? We still celebrate ours as a family, usually with a meal - those are dates that are etched on the memory. (I never remembered our anniversary, but always birthdays.) When everyone left yesterday afternoon the house was looking good - they picked up around here for me. That was a gift!

The first big challenge since coming home is that I'd like to wash my hair today. When I bathe I take a shallow bath to keep the knee out of the water but I can't wash my hair there very well. I'll do it bent over the kitchen sink so I can use the sprayer hose to rinse.

Dorothy, early last week I got out in the knee-high grass behind the back fence in my yard and got into the chiggers. In the surgery setup area I had to pull my gown around to show the nurse the red spots on my torso, to be sure they would do the surgery. If I'd scratched any to a point of infection they'd have postponed. The tall grass is pretty (it's inland sea oats) that are meant to be tall, but the chiggers like them. I'll probably spray them with some soapy water to see if that reduces the redbug population.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 20 Jun 22 - 11:32 AM

CET (Edmund) had his birthday on 19 March, right spung in the middle of Lent. He tried not to take it personally, but nevertheless annually griped that it wasn't FAIR! Why couldn't he have been born a mere two days earlier, on St. Patrick's Day, when Lenten discipline is off for the saint's festival? Was that too much to ask? (Um, as a matter of fact, yes, it was.)

I well remember the acrobatics required to bathe with a non-walking plaster cast on one lower leg, and I'm still amazed that I never hurt myself during either the entry or exit stages of the evolution. At first, I could get into but not out of the bath-tub, being too weak from the injury and the surgery, and too stupid from the drugs, to hoist myself as one does in the return phase of a bench-dip. After the crisis of convincing my brother to extract me, I stopped taking the pain-killers and thus regained enough capability to manage the task about every second day. Hair-washing was a doddle by comparison.

Note to file: Don't break any more bones, especially in the legs and feet. I'm too old now for that kind of lark.

When I read about chiggers, I think of Ontario's swarms of mosquitoes and blackflies and count myself lucky.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Senoufou
Date: 21 Jun 22 - 05:35 AM

My husband invited me last weekend to inspect his little flat which he's renting in a nearby town. I smiled secretly, because 'clutter' hardly begins to describe the state of the place! When he left me five months ago, he took all his 'stuff' - dozens of sports trainers, fancy cooking equipment, heaps and heaps of clothes, dozens of male toiletries and so on. It filled about twenty big cardboard boxes and four suitcases.
My bungalow is so clear and tidy in contrast. But he seems to like his 'man cave'.
If we reconcile and he comes back here to live, I'll have to bite my tongue when the large twenty-or-so cardboard boxes and cases get plonked all over the place, then emptied into every cupboard, drawer and wardrobe, plus the floors. (I might 'tidy' him away into a cupboard too, hee hee!)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 21 Jun 22 - 08:46 AM

I don't know for sure but I think men make the worst&biggest hoarders.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Jun 22 - 11:02 AM

Senoufou, I didn't realize that had happened! I am so sorry - you two have always sounded like a solidly loving couple. Of course, there can still be love even with there are issues that make a separation helpful for sorting-out purposes. My very best wishes on resolving that in a way that works for both of you. It's a good sign that he invited you over. I'm better friends now with my ex, now that we aren't married. We met in 1979, so he's also one of my oldest friends. We were in the first year after the divorce and going through some of the snooty stuff (when the kids would stay with who, etc) and I was diagnosed with uterine cancer. All of a sudden the divorce was no big deal, no one had died of it. He even suggested I could stay at his house during my recovery after the surgery so they could look after me. After that we got along just fine. (I don't recommend cancer as a way to get over relationship issues, but it worked for us!)

The technicolor bruising is showing up as we enter the fifth day after surgery. And the powerful pain meds they injected or applied have worn off, so I'm carefully pacing the various types (not all are prescription; good old reliable Tylenol is on the list to take 3x a day).

Out of curiosity I weighed myself today - with the leg as swollen as it is it puts on several pounds. I don't plan to weigh in again until after my 2-week checkup. And once I'm off of the pain meds is soon enough to think about resuming the weight loss activity.

Don, if you watch any of those Hoarders shows on cable mostly they seem to follow around women, but that may be the way the programs choose, not aligning with demographics. Some of the most famous hoarders are men - I remember reading about the Collyer Brothers years ago. It was a novelty back then, though now we know it is far more common than one might expect.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 21 Jun 22 - 05:29 PM

I spent most of the day with the shredder and the last of Edmund's practice files, and now my recycle bins are packed and stacked with 10 bags of paper chaff. The study closet is almost coherent, by which I mean that everything in it has a reason to stay -- at least for now.

Stilly, don't ferGawshsakes weigh yourself until you can at least walk far enough to count it as exercise. There's no point stressing yourself about embonpoint when you can't do anything practical about it; besides, you're healing, and you need all the nutrition you can get, plus some pampering.

Senoufou's post about her husband's bags and boxes of stuff brings up an odd thing that happened the other day. One of my sisters-in-law actually asked if I was interested in dating again! I couldn't believe my ears at first, and then the first words out of my mouth were "God no!" Not because I don't like male company -- I do, very much -- but because I'm finally getting the house squared away and I emphatically don't want other people in my space for more than a visit.

As for hoarding -- it's a gender-neutral affliction, in my opinion.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: JennieG
Date: 21 Jun 22 - 10:42 PM

I recall watching an episode of 'Midsomer Murders' in which an elderly woman was killed by a falling pile of hoarded newspapers from a stack which went up to the ceiling and filled rooms from wall to wall, leaving only a narrow walkway.

Our dishwasher is having conniptions, looks like it's time for a new one. We could wash everything by hand.....but we waited a long time to get a dishwasher, and it does make life easier for two Olde Phartes.

And the kitchen ceiling light has packed it in. We have bought a replacement and are eagerly awaiting a call from an electrician to install it.

Otherwise, life up here on the hill in paradise continues uneventfully.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Jun 22 - 11:17 PM

Charmion, I was mostly curious to see how much the swollen leg added up to. I don't plan on a weigh-in as a regular thing for some time to come. (I did wait until the laxative kicked in to clear the gut after anesthesia brought everything to a halt. Perhaps TMI.)

Jennie, I remember that Midsomer Murders episode, and I've seen a similar device used in various other mystery and detective programs. I always wonder at what the set designers have to do to get ready for one of those episodes, and how much more risk there is to the actors and crew in the midst of it.

This week I've quizzed several friends about home warranty policies and the companies they use now or used in the past, and think that may be the way to proceed for living with the old appliances in this house. Replace the one dead A/C unit then get a plan that lets me select the company and workers who do whatever work needs doing. It means I can keep things going until they don't, not always worry about what will fail next. It's a gamble for those companies, will they get to keep the premium this month or have to pay out to fix something big?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Senoufou
Date: 22 Jun 22 - 03:11 AM

Thank you Stilly. Yes, we were (I thought) a very solid couple, but there it is - off he went. But as you say, it's good we're still in touch, and may reconcile in time. It's been a big heartache, but I just have to keep a-troshing, as they say here in Norfolk!
I think hoarders exist among both men and women. My much-loved friend (neighbour across the street) is a consummate hoarder, and it drives her husband mad. She loves ornaments, antiques, family heirlooms etc and there isn't an inch of clear space in her bungalow. Her sheds and the garage are stuffed full too, and the dust! Cleaning is nearly impossible when clutter fills the house.
I'm the opposite. Anything unnecessary goes out of the door. I like empty spaces and an easy-to-clean house. Why keep stuff if you're never going to use it?


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 22 Jun 22 - 03:45 AM

The Midsomer Murders episode was Dark Secrets. Edward Fox (perhaps best known for The Day Of The Jackal) played the murdering husband.

As for hoarding, perhaps the things we tend to hoard vary by sex rather than hoarding itself? I have a tendency to hold on to things that I think may come in handy for some project or task some day… I suppose I could extend it to fasteners. If say, I needed 6x1” woodscrews for a task, I’m going to buy a box of at least 100 and I’ve got 4 big organiser boxes full of wood screws, wall plugs, machine screws, matching nuts, etc. in my shed. I’ve also got small selection boxes of things including a few of types of small stainless hex head screws and threaded inserts, in my room. Of course, I’ll never use all of them, some maybe never again/at all but I do like to feel I’m pretty well equipped with these things.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Jun 22 - 11:29 AM

Jon, though I have my own set of tools here it ended up doubling up (at least) on some tools when I inherited all of the tools from my father's house. There were some interesting ones that I didn't figure out what they were for until I actually needed something and had an "aha!" moment and went to retrieve the device.

It is the same as your house with boxes of screws and nails and other fasteners. I usually buy the size package closest to what I need but sometimes you end up with a pound box of nails or screws - there are lots of those stacked on the shelving in the garage. I keep scrap pieces of lumber and am regularly able to put them to use as I modify or finish something I've been working on, so the bin under the workbench is full and in the corners of the garage there are pieces leaning against the wall. The point of pride in my garage is that there is plenty of room to park the SUV and get in and out on either side without squeezing out or banging the doors into something. I refuse to let my garage be one of those that the car is always parked outside of and when the door is up it can be seen to be crammed completely full.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Donuel
Date: 22 Jun 22 - 01:35 PM

I built a car port out of a rectangle metal gazebo and hang flowering pots off the edges where the rain water wants to drain. A tall fence forms one long wall and a fence gate forms the shorter rear wall. Its big enough to also shelter snow tires a table and 4 garbage cans. Besides a metal and bamboo roof I got a extra heavy duty rubber tarp as a waterproof roof from Amazon that hasn't degraded in 5 years. It looks fine and keeps hail, ice and snow off the car. It probably costs a grand but building a garage was quoted to cost $35K or more.

I didn't design or engineer this thing from the start but instead took an impromptu approach over 3 years. I do have to share this shelter with a family of birds who like to nest there every year. Hornet nests are unwelcome and are evicted. However hornets do not poop on the car.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 22 Jun 22 - 04:30 PM

Jon, your hoarding style sounds remarkably like my mother's. When I cleared the cellar and box-rooms of my parents' house after her death, I found dozens of containers full of a range of fasteners that rivalled the stock at Home Hardware -- except nothing was new and unused. Literally pounds of nails that had been wrenched out of old boards, pickle jars full of screws marred with rust and daubed with paint, even a wooden butter box full of porcelain electrical junctions of a type forbidden in Canadian construction since about 1960. The false beams (quarter-sawn oak!) from the dining-room ceiling of the old rectory down the street lay on the cellar floor -- God alone knew what she had planned to do with those. I had to hire two guys with a truck to help me clear the jungle, and they were ready to quit at three o'clock in the afternoon.

My husband hoarded office supplies. Just yesterday, I hauled a file box full of part-used yellow legal pads down to the basement; don't know yet if it's going into the recycle or out on Freecycle, but it's going. There's also a shoebox full of pens and highlighters, four gadgets for making holes in paper (one single punch, one double, and two three-holers), a stack of accordion files with wrap-around elastic, a much larger stack of three-ring binders ranging in size from modest to enormous, five staplers, and other items too numerous to mention (as they used to say in farm auction flyers).

I did not inherit the hoarding gene, or perhaps the experience of clearing out after my mother switched it off -- I was only 26 at the time.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: JennieG
Date: 22 Jun 22 - 05:26 PM

Ah yes - that's the episode, thanks, Jon.

One problem here - and, I suspect, in many other places - is that buying single items (or even a small quantity of some things) isn't easy because of packaging. Want one of a particular type of screw? Too bad - you have to buy the smallest pre-packaged quantity, which is 25 - but what do you do with the rest? You can't bring yourself to throw them out because you paid good money for them and anyway you might need them one day, so you keep them.....and next time you need one screw you can't remember where you put them, so you buy another pack......


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 22 Jun 22 - 08:16 PM

Another box o’ stuff identified for disposal! This time it’s the bin of forgotten electronics that sat on the floor of the study closet. Not any more!

The Stratford town dump has a large recycling area with a special spot for all those gadgets we could not do without 15 years ago and are completely useless now. Tomorrow I will pay a little visit!


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Jun 22 - 09:31 PM

Office supplies. I still have lots of them, including the 3-ring binders. Some are odd library sizes that were discarded at work and came here to sell on eBay. I have a lot of e-waste that I used to take over to bins on campus but what with COVID I haven't been there much. There is an e-waste collection area in the recycling station near me that is operated by Fort Worth, though I live in a separate small town. They want to see your water bill to be sure you are eligible to drop stuff there (they also have a trash dump area and recycling and a sharing of usable stuff area). I'll get my ex to go with me with his water bill and take stuff in one of these days.

Charmion, your mom had a good eye if she rescued quarter-sawn oak beams. I hope your movers found a use for them.

My knee surgery leg is showing technicolor bruises now that I'm a week out. Most of them hurt, but they occasionally itch. Each PT appointment means the leg aches for the rest of the day. Meanwhile I'm trying not to make big important decisions during this time (like replacing the A/C or actually subscribing to a Home Warranty plan. This is the research period only.) Ugg.

Today I started hearing a high-pitched low-battery signal from somewhere in the bedroom wing. There are four devices there (hall and three rooms). These were warning beeps; they don't start beeping in earnest until 3am.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 23 Jun 22 - 03:31 AM

My shed would have been the garage here but mum always parked her car outside. I think she used it as a store for a deliveries of wood before renting the patch of land in the field. It had become a sort of dumping ground when I asked for permission to turn it into my workshop.

With the workbench and shelving I put in, you’d not get a car in now. I’m not sure but I think I may have given this picture before. It was taken after my last major sort out and me adding lights and sockets a couple of years ago. The shed needs another tidy up now but nothing too drastic. One bit of clutter in there I need to try to find a home for (assuming it will still be in good condition) is a single bed. Due to a change of plans, it has remained unassembled in its box.

Jeannie, with most (some mostly larger bits are on the shelves to the left) of my outdoor fasteners in boxes similar to this and the indoor bits in smaller selection boxes, finding what I want is usually quite easy. Maybe I came over as more of a hoarder on these things than I really am. It’s just that I’ve still got rather more of some of these items than I’ll ever use.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Jun 22 - 09:43 PM

My tool bench is built at the back wall of my garage, centered under the window, and constructed of sturdy scraps wood left over from a redwood picnic table and some 4x4" posts in front. The back is screwed onto the garage studs (the inside isn't finished). My contractor had, in the back of his pickup, a large piece of furniture-grade plywood that he offered to use in our project. Part went into a window seat in the new sunroom bay window and the rest went into my bench top. Because the wood had been chewed by dogs it has a weathered look. I found a $10 vise grip at a garage sale and fastened it onto the top right corner. The whole thing was held together with carriage bolts. It makes the garage look like it has been here as long as the house (instead of built 25 years after the house).

Not much decluttering happening this week, though I can still manage to toss stuff in the trash. Emptying the shredder bins, etc. I chased dog hair drifts around the den before the PT got here yesterday, and will repeat it again tomorrow. The thing most on my mind these days is finding a comfortable position to sit or lie; I can prop the leg up for a while but it doesn't extend comfortably for long since the soft tissues all around the thigh are tender. I can only put the ice pack on so many times. Staggering pain meds carefully helps.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 24 Jun 22 - 05:11 AM

Shredders… I must check ours as emptying it tends to get missed until the bin is too full… Our previous shredder packed in last year. We replaced it with a similar sized 6 sheet model but opted for a micro cut rather than a cross cut version this time. Ours doesn’t usually (but the way sort outs go, when they eventually happen, you can find a pile to deal with) get a lot of use but we do want something to chop up personal paperwork.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Jun 22 - 01:47 PM

Charmion, I read your earlier remark about remodeling a moldy bathroom - I need to put in flooring in my hall bathroom, now it's just the concrete that was exposed when the Linoleum was pulled up. If I get the foundation fixed it means they'll have to inspect the sewer lines under the house to be sure they don't break with the shifting. If that happens they have to jack hammer and dig through the bathroom floor (piling dirt on a tarp in the bathtub) and repair the line so there is no point in putting in a floor till that other job is done.

It's a grim day today here in the US; I need to not be awash with bad news while I try to get past the pain in my leg (the news just makes it all worse). Time to do some sewing and finish the audio murder mystery that is due tomorrow.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Jun 22 - 11:24 AM

This winter I was moving furniture in my bedroom and shifted the antique mirrored dresser to the right, forgetting there was a TV aerial propped on the top of the mirror against the wall. The TV was on the dresser top. The aerial case took a header off the frame and hit the back of the TV. Ever since if I try to watch that TV it turns itself on and off every minute or two. Not on all channels all of the time, but enough that it's really annoying and I can't figure out a fix for it. So this week I ordered a "renewed" (returned) TV to put in there to replace it.

These are usually products that were returned without being used, but because they were out of the "chain of custody," as it were, they don't know if the box was opened or things removed, etc. it has to be examined and certified as working. The TV on the kitchen wall was one of those and everything was still in the box and works perfectly all these years later. So I decided to keep the price down and try one of those. It just arrived and the box looks like it's new and I hope everything inside is also. The funky TV will go on the table in the sunroom and I'll test it in there some more. If it doesn't stop that behavior I will put it in an e-waste bin instead of donate it because if it doesn't work for me no point in giving it to Goodwill for someone else to discover the same problem. With the surgery and PT I haven't been able to do my exercises, but this is the setup I use for streaming Essentrics. It needs to be large enough so I'm not squinting at her moves from across the room. As Charmion noted a few pages back, smaller TVs are difficult to find. I think this is 33" and is huge compared to anything I grew up with, but had the features I wanted in the small (under 40") group.

Dorothy, have you tackled the weeds and the garden and the shutter or screen doors and the kiln and everything else up there at Beaver? Been out to any area concerts? I hope the heat doesn't fry your yard this year.

It looks like our current heat wave won't break until Monday when the high is forecast to be 87o. Normal June temperatures for a few days then back up into the triple-digits in July. I fear this summer will rival the 1980 Texas heat wave when there were 42 consecutive days over 100o. We might not have consecutive, but we'll have a high number worthy of the record books.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Jun 22 - 11:10 AM

This new "smart" TV is bossy - it wants me to accept the statement that it will send my clicks (viewing choices) to wherever, and I won't. It's logged into the house WiFi but I will probably take it off again to dumb it down. There are some things I haven't figured out yet (I have to find and download the user's manual.) The Amazon Fire stick is on the network for streaming and it has NetFlix, so I don't need it also on the TV.

The knee is slowly healing, it's a bit different than last time, including a little ooze through the bandage and small pinkish area beside that part of the bandage. I'm guessing I popped a stitch there. The on-call nurse asked for a photo and she said it's normal, but if it gets quite red, then call back. The thing that is the same between the last surgery and this is that I don't get a good-night's sleep with the various distractions this provides. The bandage comes off on Wednesday and I'm counting the hours. #ThankDogForIcePacks

Things I can still do include dragging the hose over to water the garden. I make a point of looking at how I'm dressed to be sure I won't alarm anyone. The calf-pressure cuffs look a bit odd (my Alley Oop look - you may need to be a certain age to know him.) The water and electric bills will be higher this month with the high heat and extra watering.

I am going to exert myself this afternoon to make a batch of my yeast dinner rolls as a thank-you to my ex, who has run lots of errands this month. They're one of his favorites. I make the dough with the bread machine on manual so after it stops kneading I shape, raise, and bake. When adding ingredients I mix in a good shake of granulated garlic and crumbled oregano into the dough and make them with olive oil instead of shortening. These rolls are a family favorite and friends request them by name for potlucks. Several years ago when my son moved to the Pacific NW he was going to Thanksgiving dinner at his aunt's house, so I suggested he make the rolls. I gave him the recipe - he knows how to divide and shape them because that was often his chore as a child. Now when I hear from my sister about dinner with my son and his partner she'll say that "he brought his rolls." The legacy shifts, and now he also owns them. :)


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Charmion
Date: 26 Jun 22 - 01:56 PM

The wilfulness of a modern television is tiresome. Mine is loaded with Google software, so it drags me (kicking and squirming) toward streaming services the Google company has cut deals with, including Disney, Netflix and Prime. Of course, the list of favoured options does not include any Canadian services.

Back when we had cable, we realized that we watched only about four of the hundred or more stations available to us. The same thing is happening to my consumption of streamed video; I find something I like, watch all of it, and then can’t get interested in anything else on that channel and just stop using it. So far, I’ve booked out of Netflix and I’m rapidly losing interest in Disney — I’m sorry I paid for a year of it up front. Last week I signed up with Apple to watch “Slow Horses”, and I hope that holds my attention for a while.

Prime has a nice selection of innocuous Brit series that have a comforting sedative effect on me. Right now, I’m slogging through “Midsomer Murders”, which provides beautiful landscape to look at when the plot is really too tiresome.


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Subject: RE: FITNESS & Declutter 2022 - Pandemic redux
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Jun 22 - 03:10 PM

You can watch a lot of those older programs free on streaming Internet sites. Pluto TV is just like basic cable. There is a channel dedicated to Midsomer Murders (it has commercials). There's one for Perry Mason. All of the episodes of America's Test Kitchen and This Old House. The CSI brand is well-represented