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DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024

Stilly River Sage 16 Mar 24 - 07:01 PM
keberoxu 17 Mar 24 - 05:03 PM
Stilly River Sage 17 Mar 24 - 06:56 PM
Stilly River Sage 18 Mar 24 - 11:31 AM
Stilly River Sage 18 Mar 24 - 10:50 PM
Charmion 19 Mar 24 - 12:10 PM
Stilly River Sage 19 Mar 24 - 09:38 PM
Bat Goddess 20 Mar 24 - 09:48 AM
Stilly River Sage 20 Mar 24 - 11:13 AM
Bat Goddess 20 Mar 24 - 01:11 PM
Stilly River Sage 20 Mar 24 - 02:24 PM
Mrrzy 21 Mar 24 - 12:38 PM
Stilly River Sage 21 Mar 24 - 01:32 PM
Stilly River Sage 22 Mar 24 - 10:53 AM
Charmion 22 Mar 24 - 04:05 PM
keberoxu 22 Mar 24 - 06:43 PM
Stilly River Sage 22 Mar 24 - 07:09 PM
Stilly River Sage 23 Mar 24 - 11:01 AM
Charmion 24 Mar 24 - 07:49 AM
pattyClink 24 Mar 24 - 06:19 PM
Stilly River Sage 24 Mar 24 - 09:18 PM
Charmion 25 Mar 24 - 11:08 AM
Stilly River Sage 25 Mar 24 - 03:07 PM
Charmion's brother Andrew 25 Mar 24 - 07:14 PM
Stilly River Sage 25 Mar 24 - 08:35 PM
Stilly River Sage 26 Mar 24 - 11:25 AM
Sandra in Sydney 26 Mar 24 - 05:29 PM
pattyClink 26 Mar 24 - 09:53 PM
Stilly River Sage 26 Mar 24 - 11:44 PM
Charmion 27 Mar 24 - 09:46 AM
Stilly River Sage 27 Mar 24 - 11:35 AM
Charmion 27 Mar 24 - 03:02 PM
keberoxu 27 Mar 24 - 04:28 PM
Stilly River Sage 27 Mar 24 - 11:11 PM
Stilly River Sage 28 Mar 24 - 12:29 PM
Stilly River Sage 28 Mar 24 - 05:17 PM
Charmion 28 Mar 24 - 07:29 PM
Stilly River Sage 28 Mar 24 - 08:20 PM
Charmion 29 Mar 24 - 09:30 AM
Stilly River Sage 29 Mar 24 - 10:20 AM
Charmion 29 Mar 24 - 11:13 AM
Stilly River Sage 29 Mar 24 - 12:31 PM
Dorothy Parshall 30 Mar 24 - 11:50 AM
Charmion 30 Mar 24 - 12:25 PM
Stilly River Sage 30 Mar 24 - 01:07 PM
keberoxu 30 Mar 24 - 08:10 PM
keberoxu 31 Mar 24 - 06:48 PM
Stilly River Sage 31 Mar 24 - 08:09 PM
Charmion 01 Apr 24 - 10:16 AM
Stilly River Sage 01 Apr 24 - 04:04 PM
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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Mar 24 - 07:01 PM

I've looked at Bose - I could never persuade myself to spend that much for the various devices I've shopped. And it is remarkable the stuff that turns up at Goodwill - I have a high-end JVC receiver from the time when all of the surround speakers were popular and DVD at its height (it also has buttons for VHS and stereo turntable) - for about $25. I still have my father's really good speakers and a couple of others connected for TV viewing. I added a Bluetooth adapter so the Echo dot lives on top of the receiver and communicates audio content via the adapter. It sounds great to my ears.

Two days after losing the Lab and someone has already asked if I'm looking to expand the pack to three again and they have a friend with a dog that needs a new home. Nope. She apparently tripped on a dog toy and broke her wrist. (The answer may be as simple as to get rid of the dog toys, they don't need them.) No point in setting up her hopes; no more dogs for a while, at the very least, and if one is adopted, we make a connection on our own (even if it is at the shelter.) Right now we need to examine the hole left in our household and live with it for a while.

For spring I'm working on a list of projects that need to be finished. That'll keep me busy (the list and the projects) because there seem to be quite a few things around here lately that require the last step or two before I can put away the materials.

Dorothy, if you're reading along, I hope you're feeling better and R is still being a great help. And if Susan (WYSIWYG) still checks in have someone update us on your progress.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: keberoxu
Date: 17 Mar 24 - 05:03 PM

Good on you, Stilly:
your two dogs will still do the job you trained them to do,
and now they get to be closer to you at the same time.
Thinking of you as all of you grieve your loss.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Mar 24 - 06:56 PM

There is a sense of relief also when the thing you dread finally happens and you can move on. That old dog was a lot of work; the routine has suddenly simplified. I was shopping for fruit and veggies for three dogs (on top of their dry food), but with the big one gone I need half as much food because proportate to dog size, he got as much as the other two combined. When I tell them to eat I can step aside and sit on the arm of the sofa again; for months I've been propping up the back end of the old Lab so he didn't topple and knock over the contents of his bowl. (Oh my aching back!)

A goodbye lunch with a former colleague today; he's moving to Indiana to be near family and admittedly as a climate change escapee. He figures the summers in Texas aren't getting any cooler so he's moving while he can. After giving a tour at the museum I ran into another old coworker from the university who now works at a local public library. So much catching up with him and his partner; I hope to soon hear from a mutual friend of ours who I lost track of. So many stories from all of us. And the recommendation of a good auto repair shop and a couple of good restaurants.

I feel inspired to get moving with the eBay listings - my lunch friend did a lot of sales during COVID to clear out many useful but unneeded items. We concur that antiques aren't the valuable property now that they were when we were growing up or as younger adults doing our own collecting. Family heirlooms are harder to hand down to the kids.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Mar 24 - 11:31 AM

I'm revising my little list routine; it's something I mentioned reading about last fall, a list of up to six items for the day, numbered in order of importance, crossed off when completed, transfer uncompleted items to the next day. When I remember to make the list it has been helpful, but some tasks need more discipline than just being noted and numbered. I've replaced the battery in a timer to leave in my office for some of the things that often take way longer than they should.

One of the dog items out in the Monday trash is a 4' scrap square of carpet. It was under a large dog bed, but as Zeke grew leakier it was hit many times and was never going to be truly clean even with the steam clean machine. (I sprayed it often with an enzyme solution meant to break down pet smells.) It was a surface that offered traction so he could roll over and stand.

It's gorgeous today, but the ground is too wet to work yet. It might be dry enough to mow the front this afternoon. After 2+ inches of rain we're verging on weeds tall enough for the code enforcement guy to get out his warning tags, so it's a race to beat him to it.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Mar 24 - 10:50 PM

Last week my pharmacy sent a text saying CDC is recommending another booter for COVID; I asked today when I was there and they said anyone over 65 can get another vaccination if it's more than four months since the last one. So I got it.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 19 Mar 24 - 12:10 PM

I haven't heard anything about new COVID boosters in Ontario. Time to look at the Ministry of Health website, I guess.

Today is Edmund's birthday, so I'm feeling a bit strange. I should be making a bang-up dinner to go with prezzies, but the fridge is empty (it's just another Tuesday) and my agenda is full of choir-related problems. It's also snowing -- perfectly normal for the March equinox but not cheery; the sky is leaden grey and the street is messy with slush. Roll on Spring.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Mar 24 - 09:38 PM

This evening I made a dinner for myself that represents one of my son's favorite dishes (homemade chicken breast strips, breaded and fried in oil and butter). Since he is half a country away, I can't fix a birthday dinner for him but making it for myself is a nice reminder of his birthday (two weeks ago). I've made it three times this month (it is also a favorite of mine!)

After 22 years in this house with increasing mortgage payments every year, I had the pleasant surprise of reviewing the annual mortgage documents and seeing a decrease in the required escrow amount. Last year the state legislature passed laws to lower taxes for homeowners and it seems to have worked. The monthly payment will stay the same for the next year. (I could put the refund toward the payment and lower the bill each month, but at this point I'm not trying to hurry along the final payment, I have to get my ducks lined up for that first.)

My day has been achy, with a slight flu-like feeling after yesterday's vaccination. I took it easy, only pulling some large weeds and dropping them in place; tomorrow they'll be mulched in when I mow. Past side-effects were brief, so I expect tomorrow to be back to normal. I've also moved some of clutter in the front room and there's almost enough space in there to set up the photo cube and lights for eBay listings, letting me clear eBay stuff off the dining table in the den. Then I'll have that tabletop to put out my cloth cutting board for projects that can't be cut in the sewing studio.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 20 Mar 24 - 09:48 AM

Hit the ground running this morning after a tightly choreographed weekend and Monday and yesterday’s R&R with a friend (and her Cairn terrier MacTavish) in Brunswick, Maine. (Multitasked on the way home by dropping off two books — decluttered!) with Ranger1 in Freeport.)

Medicated Rufus’s ears (and gave him treats) and then went downstairs to organize coffee and boot the computer. (And throw a sheet in the dryer — it’s been lingering in the washer too long.) Also got a good start on the dishes in the sink while waiting for both the computer and the coffee.

Started to take said coffee upstairs but decided to traipse out to the car in my nightshirt (it’s a few degrees above freezing but going above 50°F by afternoon) to retrieve my Monday’s purchases from Big Lots — two new pillows and miscellaneous snackage.

I don’t have anything that HAS to be done today, but a whole bunch o’ stuff I’d like to get checked off the list. One of the first is to email my mechanic — my “Check Engine” light came on right after I backed out of my friend’s driveway. Another friend gave me a code reader last summer — now all I have to do is suss out where I put it.

Everything needs to be renewed this year — my passport, my handicapped placard, my driver’s license… Today I’m going to get a care package/housewarming box of treats to a friend in Louisville into the mail and, while I’m at the post office, find out if I can make an appointment there for a new passport photo.

Post office is first stop before heading to Market Basket to pick up some necessities of life — the list has been at hand for a couple weeks. Then home to maybe accomplish a few more things, including a lot of emails — broadcast thank you to the musicians and singers who helped make the St. Patrick’s Day session-style performance at Mr. Sippy’s BBQ a delightful success, and longer catch up and lunch date-making emails.

I read some really good advice on writing a couple weeks ago and desperately need to put it into action on the memoir of the Press Room sessions and the musical community that Tom (Mudcat’s Curmudgeon) congregated. In the interview with the author in the back of the novel The Dictionary of Lost Words Pip Williams was asked about her writing routine. She said she’d tried many variations on a regular routine, but the daily demand for her that worked best was to write one word a day. To only demand of herself one word a day. It’s much too insignificant to engender procrastination. But…if that one word gets written, well, look at this — a sentence is likely to result, or maybe even a whole paragraph or chapter.

I’m gonna try it!

Linn


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Mar 24 - 11:13 AM

Linn, I'm experimenting with the sonnet form (there are several renderings, such as abab cdcd efef gg or abba abba efefgg, but the result is 14 lines generally in iambic pentameter). I need to choose targeted keywords to weave in establishing the premise.

What are you planning to move out of the house? I remember you selling DVDs from your shop (do you have any left?) and you had some antiques (do you use eBay?) A lot of what we describe of our puttering seems to maintain the status quo, something we all do. Replacing existing stuff with newer working items keeps our households efficient, and keeping ourselves healthy is essential and is a feature of these threads.

What every one of us has realized is that while we were doing such a good job collecting valuable antiques, their cache was slipping away and they now need to be redistributed to people who want them but who aren't going to pay what we thought they were worth. Antiques are no longer an investment. My goal now is to declutter the things I bought at thrift stores to sell on eBay - if I can actually list and move out this stuff I will give myself a lot of room. It takes time to do it right (to stay in the 100% seller ranking). After that I need to clear out the estate items from my great aunts (stored in trunks under the eBay stuff) that is never going to get used by me or my family, but has novelty value, especially for people who focus on certain period pieces or art activities. I keep in mind how Charmion has a good system of attacking parts of rooms at a time, selling or giving large pieces and the rest loaded in her car and hauled off to a thrift store or donating to her church tag sales. (Is the china being listed now on eBay?) To make a system like that work the front room needs my focus first. I think your basement has a lot of good stuff like that?

Spring cleaning - a good time for each of us to make a declutter list that has a reasonable goal.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 20 Mar 24 - 01:11 PM

Never sold DVDs, Stilly. Cinematheque was pre-DVD — VHS only. I've still got a bunch of those — lots of foreign films and classic Is there a market anyplace for those?

Sold a lot of my vinyl (NOT Tom's wonderful English-Scots-Irish-Maritime collection), but it's time for me to cull some more and the person who pays top dollar is right up the road.

If I get some stuff consolidated (and the stuff for Goodwill out of here) I'll call Bjorn to see if he wants to buy an accumulation of smaller antique-ish stuff — none of it individually worth serious bucks, but I don't want to take to Goodwill; I'd like to get SOMETHING for it.

I got four books (to two people) deaccessioned over the past couple days. And there's a huge pile of books that go at the bottom of the stairs. Some are earmarked for a couple friends (I need to schedule getting together with them, one local and one who will soon be making her migration back to the Seacoast for summer.) The rest go to the Nottingham library sale.

Linn


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Mar 24 - 02:24 PM

You can sell them individually on eBay; for example, I searched for one that for a long time was not available as DVD and it's still out there as VHS: Tampopo. What I have always thought worth consideration is making a digital copy (a DVD) and offering it free with the VHS for sale, never offered by itself. There's a gray area, but if you look at the ads for many of the older films they will say "digital copy" suggesting that it's an old film in a digital form (put out by the studio or copied by a reseller?) You're allowed to make personal copies of films you buy, to put them on a device to play. If you offered that copy at the same time they receive the VHS tape - you'd be ripping VHS tapes to the computer and offering them as a pair, but selling only the tape. For some of the really in demand films people will make their own personal copies, they just want to get their hands on the VHS, but the work already done will broaden the possible buyer pool. (At the U Library we had to explore the legal aspects of ripping files for streaming on campus when the new online teaching formats such as Blackboard and Canvas. English, film, history, various classes had films in their syllabi.) Or you could just sell the high-dollar cassettes alone and package the rest to sell in lots.

Take a look at the SOLD stats for VHS films, they talk about digital copies. Figure out how to make that work for you. I have old VHS players here and a Canopus device for digitizing the files that load on the computer, then I use Nero to burn the files. Ripping the tapes happens in real time so it's something you would have to set up and be able to walk away from for a while, but even doing one a day or one a week, you could have a number of these listed at a time. It is work, but for the treasures you have in your collection there, I think you'll find buyers. You could start out offering just the tapes, and if there aren't nibbles at the price you want, try adding a digital file.

Unrelated, back to Zeke for a moment - it seems that he was our main meal timekeeper. The girls used to come in to get me but it was once he indicated that it was time. Several times lately I've realized it's late and they didn't fuss at me. They're going to have to develop their own sense of time (I need to ask if they're on time at the back fence with Cecil - Zeke often was the leader in that activity also.)


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Mrrzy
Date: 21 Mar 24 - 12:38 PM

I am not doing things I oughta so am enjoying reading your progress reports...


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Mar 24 - 01:32 PM

Mrrzy, what do you think you ought to be doing? And how are you feeling these days?

This morning I retrieved a steel pot from the greenhouse; it was my favorite pan for steaming until I accidentally put it on the stove with no water and warped it. With the three dogs I had a large steel bucket on the floor in the kitchen (3-4 gallons) but it was heavy to pick up full so it didn't get changed more than a couple of times a week. That is gone and a pot that used to sit outside is cleaned and on the floor (a Dutch oven I found in the creek bed during a visit by Mudcatter Marion - she laughed and said "you're not going to use that to cook in!") - no, but it has been used for dog water and is where the toads always take a soak each summer. With that old creek pan indoors I put the smaller steaming one on the porch. Since it is a little shallower the toads will still have easy access for their summertime spa.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Mar 24 - 10:53 AM

It seems that the grown children don't always appreciate suggestions from parental units, but they will accept gifts. So after a photo tip was ignored in a post where one of the partners expressed frustration on making a photo look the way they wanted, I'm making a small diffusion light (an LED in a translucent plastic gallon jug with a big cutout for the light) to hand over at lunch today. And that's an extra light out of the house. Setting the bright light to the side and turning off all other sources will make the gold ink shine the way she wants. And it only took one day to find that extra light (logically tucked into the bottom of the bag that holds all of my photo cube gear.) win/win

I have friends with old dogs so have started asking around and am sharing the extra meds (no sales - that isn't kosher). So far one of the two bottles has a new home. This is more of a share-the-wealth situation than declutter. The training pads that I tried using can go to my friend whose cats I sit - she uses them in spots where the male cats are likely to spray to reduce the amount of washing or laundry that needs doing. The size doesn't matter. Dog diapers will find a home one of these days to a friend or via Freecycle (that site is set up in many countries, not just the US, if anyone is interested).


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 22 Mar 24 - 04:05 PM

I have been coughing all winter, hacking like a cat with a hairball, and it is now obvious that I have bronchitis. So I’m back on Zenhaile, the combination steroid and bronchodilator, and as usual I feel crappy while I get used to it again.

Unfortunately, I have a dress rehearsal tonight and a concert tomorrow, and Holy Week beginning Sunday and heading for a four-day musical marathon from Maundy Thursday to Easter Sunday. I can sing okay, but I can’t stop the loud, disgusting cough once it starts.

For the concert, I’ll try to put myself on the end of the alto line so I can duck off-stage when I start to cough. Dunno about church; I’m cantor on Maundy Thursday and at the Easter vigil service. Maybe I’ll be coughing less by then.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: keberoxu
Date: 22 Mar 24 - 06:43 PM

Oh, Charmion! What a drag, and just in time for the Holy Week marathon. What a shame.

Meanwhile, I hope Senoufou/Eliza won't have to suffer with her gall bladder troubles much longer.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Mar 24 - 07:09 PM

I know several people who like the way their voice sounds as they're on the end of the recovery from a cold (my Dad was one of those), but having had a cold or bronchitis probably means the stamina is less (and the strain is more?) Good luck working your way through that schedule!

Last night I set up the kitchen radio so the alarm goes off at 4:45am and will play the radio (no buzzer to swat). That way I won't hear it on my side of the house but the dogs might develop their own sense of what time it is (as mentioned before, Zeke seems to have been our chief "watch" dog for things to do with food). The next door neighbor tells me that both dogs were at the fence this morning. He's usually up and listening for them by about 4:30.

I wrote the other day about selling Linn's VHS tapes on eBay, but I haven't spelled out my system for listing things. It starts with photos, and I have the photo cube in the den on the dining table, and a LED light on each side that are intended to shine through the cloth to diffuse the light. This removes the need for a flash on the camera, because the flash usually reflects on the surface of whatever is being photographed and makes it harder to see. Some things get the side lights and the flash if I need to illustrate different aspects. I choose the packaging for what I'm selling, the padding if needed, and put it together to weigh and measure. That is noted on a small slip of paper I keep next to the photo cube. Once I drop those photos into Photoshop and crop then choose a few I have a notepad (text) file for composing the listing. I have boilerplate stuff about it being sold as-is, not returnable unless the wrong thing is sent, etc. and though this may sound like a lot of work it's not so bad. I reuse old listings, changing the description at the top and reusing the boilerplate. I have an old version of Frontpage (2003!) that works as an html editor and I copy the code. For your code to look the way you want in the eBay form you have to use a <div> tag to start and a </div> tag to close it (I made those with html so they show here). I prefer to have it all worked out on my computer so I can copy and paste into the eBay listing, I don't want to sit there composing in the eBay site itself.

When the listing goes up I know the dimensions and weight of the package so set up a couple of shipping methods in eBay, and always note that eBay calculates the shipping. There are still some sellers out there who gouge on the shipping to compensate for what looks like a lower price on the thing they're selling.

Before I post I look through eBay listings to see if I've missed any important feature on my listing, and I look at the SOLD listings to be sure the price I choose is right for my item (I use "Buy it now," rarely ever auction, though eBay by default wants you to do an auction and wants you to accept offers. I don't do that either.) And it's much easier to get started by finding the item that best matches yours and how you want to sell and choose the "sell an item like this" button somewhere on the page. You have to remove their details, and check the boxes they may have filled it, but you don't have to choose a category and go through the early settings that way.

Make sure you have as many keywords in the title as possible (up to 80 characters) and you can avoid some obvious ones - if I'm listing a LG G8 ThinQ phone, I don't need to say "smartphone" in the header; better to have the amount of memory or "unlocked" in the title, etc. With selling china, Charmion will have lots of things like exact measurements, photos front and back, is there crazing or are there chips, etc. Always do new photos for every listing and make clear that they are part of the description. And if something is returned use those photos to compare the item to be sure someone hasn't switched it out or damaged it. That is fraud, and you can make the case so eBay won't penalize you. eBay still forces sellers to accept returns, and they will issue a refund whether you like it or not, but you can make it less likely by charging shipping, having the buyer pay return shipping, etc. and making it clear a refund is minus the shipping costs.

If something turns out not to be described accurately, it's a judgement call. I sold a handbag one time, leather, and it looked in good shape, but I hadn't moved it around a lot to see the cracking on some of the tags and realized when the buyer complained that it did have issues (I could see them in my photo when I enlarged them). In that instance, since I don't want it back because I'm not going to sell it again, I offer to split the difference - give a partial refund so I don't lose money on the shipping to them, and tell them to keep the item so they don't have to pay to ship to me to get the rest of the refund, when we both lose. And chances are they might still use the thing they bought because the problem is slight and is cosmetic, I don't sell stuff that isn't in good shape. (Antiques are different - they can be expected to show signs of age, but you need full disclosure.)

eBay 101.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Mar 24 - 11:01 AM

Oak tassels will be littering the ground for a while and the pollen from lots of other stuff seems to be settling in my nose. The seasonal allergy constant tickle of an almost-sneeze is here and will get the full treatment - daily allergy stuff (Zyrtec), overnight Benadryl to boost the daytime medication, and the neti pot as needed. I have another tour today so will do the neti pot before I head out to reduce throat clearing (I got clobbered by it on last week's tour) and I'll have a cough drop in my pocket for last resort. This isn't as drastic as the situation Charmion is looking ahead to, but in a public performance space, having control of one's voice is essential.

We had drizzle for a couple of days but today is sunny so later this afternoon I'll be able to attack the weeds and start planting things that would have benefitted from planting last month, but will be ok now. In fact, I had a better potato crop than usual last year when they were planted late. I'll wear a face mask to filter pollen that will have settled on some of the taller weeds. Apparently not all pollen is created equal and some particles are larger than can be absorbed or whatever, but it must all be treated with caution.

Did anyone else see Dante: Inferno to Paradise last week? It was fascinating. I liked part 1 better than 2, but I plan to rewatch the whole thing (I stumbled upon it a few minutes into the part 1 so want to watch it all in one sitting from the very beginning.)


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 24 Mar 24 - 07:49 AM

The nasty cough has developed into bronchitis. I haven’t been so sick since COVID, and even that was less problematic — bronchitis calls for medical intervention.

Last night’s concert unfolded without me, and Palm Sunday at church will go likewise. I have my regular monthly date with the allergy doc on Tuesday, so maybe I’ll be able to sing by Thursday — or not.

Hack, kaff. Drat.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: pattyClink
Date: 24 Mar 24 - 06:19 PM

Got an error message when posting, is there a word limit on posts going through properly?


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Mar 24 - 09:18 PM

No, (I really want to know what you were going to share!) but sometimes you have to refresh (F5 on my Windows machine) the screen. Always select and copy what you've written before hitting "submit message" so it doesn't get lost. (We haven't had the missing messages problems like we did in the past for quite a while, but I did get an error when I first logged on tonight - F5 fixed it.)

Today saw a quiet morning but this afternoon I got to the gym for an hour spread between the recumbent bike, the stair climber thing, and the treadmill. This is a pattern I need to continue, because the climbing and walking are weight bearing exercise while the bike is flexibility and cardio.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 25 Mar 24 - 11:08 AM

Still sick. Choir issues continue. Would very much like to run away to sea, or perhaps with the circus.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Mar 24 - 03:07 PM

The SUV needs work on the fan, needs a brake job (now, while it is simple to just replace pads), and the state inspection. I've had a new place recommended so will compare their answers (can they do any or all of this work?) with the other new repair place (they have a diagnostic charge that hits the pocketbook before any work begins). I'm getting a recording when I call so I'll stop by later because the cat sitting gig is nearby.

The process of setting a timer seems to be helping my mood and productivity in the office. Instead of a task expanding to fill the available time, I'm finishing and moving on. It means the items on my little list are more likely to be all completed.

Heavy rain overnight, so gardening and mowing is deferred until mid-week.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion's brother Andrew
Date: 25 Mar 24 - 07:14 PM

Go with the sea. There are fewer allergens out there.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Mar 24 - 08:35 PM

Andrew, a good recommendation, but she should be home in time for the doctor's appointment tomorrow.

The newly recommended auto repair shop has been visited and an appointment made for a brake job next week. While it's in the shop the mechanic will take a look at the AC and tell me what repairs are needed on the fan. I can book that repair later (I try to schedule so I can wait and not have to be picked up and dropped off - both jobs at once would take too long). The close-by shop that does alignments and repairs would charge me $189 just to diagnose the problem (and not take that fee off of the repair, as one might expect). It's worth driving 10 minutes up the road for the savings. The close place can do the cheap simple stuff.

So much stuff around here to pick up and put away. I did some dusting this morning and realized I'll have to combine putting away with dusting this week. This is the beginning of spring cleaning.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Mar 24 - 11:25 AM

Since Zeke departed I have been sharing his food with the girls, but am rethinking that decision: Cookie is sitting on the floor behind me at this very moment and has just delivered two loud farts. The specialized food the girls get helps with gas; the senior food they've had a share of generates more gastric churn. There will always be some, but with the wrong food they are more frequent and stinkier. I could go to some of the other flavors of food now that my no-wheat and no-chicken dog is gone, but the gas would return with the change.

There was something I planned to share this morning, an organizational shift here, but I've forgotten what it was. The ADHD brain moves on once something has been solved, then just TRY to remember what you were going to say. [sigh] It will come around again and maybe I'll grab hold and make note of the idea then.

I finished a jigsaw puzzle last night and happily all of the pieces were present. This was one I bought full-price; so often I pick them up at thrift stores or in the clearance section of places like Tuesday Morning (the late lamented store where I bought sheets and good pans and nice area rugs over the years). This puzzle was a venture into a new product by the artist and promoted during COVID and I bought two of his works. I'll search for what else he has out there, they were well-designed and nuanced. (I have a couple given me by friends and family that are about 30% black sky in outer space or bright blue sky behind a bright Japanese temple; those will be killers if and when I start them.)

Charmion, I hope your visit goes well today. And Dorothy, I hope you're doing will with your treatments and will drop in with an update on your travels and organizing activities soon. I visualize you staying away from any public places with germs that could make things more difficult (viruses), but I can't imagine you sitting quietly and reading a book all day long; have you been working with your pots lately?

Linn, do you have power and have you made progress in sorting or donating?


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 26 Mar 24 - 05:29 PM

Maggie, way back in the 70s I has 2 jigsaws - one was a tiny little earth in the blackness of space, the other showed the Saturn rocket starting to launch against deep blue, the gases were cropped out, but I can't find the image. Each had more background than colour, & I only made them once - it took forever to fit in each black piece (they were all the same shape) as the black was a lot more than 30%, however the rocket was "only" a third of that puzzle!!


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: pattyClink
Date: 26 Mar 24 - 09:53 PM

Thanks, SRS. Nothing earth-shaking to post, but let's try it again and see what happens.

Spent a rare weekend working hard on clutter, endeavoring to get my stored stuff organized for transport. Miraculously, there was a vacant storage unit 2 doors away from mine, so for a couple of months and not much money, I have obtained elbow room to work in the main unit. Mental room too, I can see what I'm up against and what I'm doing, can start to see solutions. Literally sit in my one remaining chair, stare at the stuff, and start to see what to do. A lot to be said for just sitting and pondering.

Then, began purging and shredding some old paper files. Haven't wiped them all out, some are going to need more thoughtful treatment and scanning before purging. But still, condensed 3 R-Kive boxes to 2, and the empty one will be handy to donate books in. A good start on wrestling the monster to the ground.

Melancholy, yep, hard to look at the paper debris of a life and not get yanked down memory lanes too much.

Today, stocked up at a local wine shop, and requested a box or two. Was shown where the hidden stash of boxes were. Got some and was told to slip back in whenever I need to. Yay! Nothing like the smaller liquor boxes for books, rocks, etc.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Mar 24 - 11:44 PM

Patty, you've discovered what my mom always suggested to friends and family who were moving - liquor boxes are heavy duty, made to protect glass, but in order to be something people can lift they can't be too large. That pretty much assures that even if you pack them full you can still lift them. (Back in the day, the Washington State liquor store employees always used box cutters to slice open the tops of boxes on three sides, letting the fourth side be the hinge. It made them easy to pack and to close.) Like all members of our family, Mom had lots of books, and her interest in those boxes was that when filled with books they could still be carried easily. I could say the same thing for my brother and my rocks picked up in the field. You could still carry one of those boxes full of rocks (assuming they had some packaging, etc.)

I have a couple of friends with stories of literally living in their storage units for at least weeks. It usually had to do with the poverty of graduate school and having units where they would pull in their cars, but then sleeping in the car (and this was years ago - who knows how many of them have people in them now?) Good luck with sorting your stuff and contracting back down to one unit.

Two more days left on my cat-sitting gig. The cash is nice, but it's also nice to finish and have more time to myself.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 27 Mar 24 - 09:46 AM

Yesterday’s visit to the doc in Kitchener led to a chest x-ray and two more drugs: Prednisone and a heavy-duty antibiotic. The x-ray and prescriptions required two hours of driving around Stratford after the round trip to Kitchener. I was done for the day at noon.

It’s the same old asthma-related bronchitis I’ve had so often over the last 50 years, but only twice since 2013, when I started on the new drug Xolair. Even COVID didn’t trigger it. I have no idea what set it off this time.

I am bored, so I’m getting better. Always look on the bright side of life!


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Mar 24 - 11:35 AM

Charmion, modern medicine is a thing of beauty when it works for us (which is most of the time, except I stand by Dorothy in her current sense of frustration)! How is your sense of smell and taste with the bronchitis? Do you have chicken soup or chicken and rice or something else that serves as comfort food when you're not feeling well? Cream of tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwich? I really love the decaf teas like Throat Coat and Bronchial Blues.

The dog food is spoken for and she'll pick it up late tomorrow afternoon; I asked for a specific time so it won't be on the porch long enough to attract ants. The new batch of regular food for the girls is ordered and I'll be able to tip the full bag into the big bin that until recently held Zeke's food. (Dog food containers and toys and meds are stored in an antique trunk it the den; it didn't have room for two large restaurant storage containers so one held half as much. At one time all of the dogs ate the same food and this wasn't an issue, having to tape up a half-full bag until the smaller bin was drawn down.) The use of space in the den and kitchen is still shifting as the accouterments of the third dog are gradually recognized and dispatched. I hadn't realized how much more time he needed at the end; he was a good boy and got the love and attention he needed, but the girls are a lot less fussy and they come to me when they want something while he would lie there and bark until I went to check on him. Hopefully winding down on the dog stories. I hadn't intended to post much, but the declutter effect of losing him has been remarkable.

Today is chilly with a 50% chance of rain in the afternoon. If the dew dries enough I'll be able to mow the back before the storms. I'm paying more attention to the new compost pile now and emptying kitchen waste into it more frequently (Cookie can't get into this one - so far) so I'll probably empty a bucket there and bag enough grass to drop over the top of it. I usually let the bucket contents break down a lot more so it's less interesting to the dogs, but that means moving a much heavier and more full bucket. Just like now putting down smaller water bowls, I can now move the kitchen waste when it isn't as bulky.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 27 Mar 24 - 03:02 PM

My friend Alden arrived with a care package: two kinds of soup, a loaf of sourdough bread, a small cheese, some fruit-flavoured yoghourt, two lemons (for toddy), and a large bunch of yellow tulips.

The main difference (so far) between this illness and COVID is that my olfactory senses have not failed — oh, and of course I tested negative.

For 40 years I have had two Victorian flower frogs sculling around in the china cabinet. With so many tulips and only one vase of suitable size, I put a frog in the bottom of an old Doulton bowl and made a faux-Japanese arrangement for the dining-room table. I could easily have decluttered the frogs at any time, and I really wonder why I haven’t — probably because they came from my paternal grandparents’ house, and they are small enough to fit neatly in a back corner behind the cassoulet pot.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: keberoxu
Date: 27 Mar 24 - 04:28 PM

THis is the first I have ever heard of "flower frogs";
I had to Google it to find out what these are.

A friend like Alden is a friend in need, indeed.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Mar 24 - 11:11 PM

Friend Alden is a keeper!

Flower frogs come in all sorts of types and sizes. I have antiques from my great aunts and a few I bought in shops. Most are glass (some clear, some green) with holes throughout so they can hold the stems. Growing up my mother had brass spiky frogs that the flowers are impaled upon. Either one has to fit in the bottom of the vase, which makes me wonder about the large ones I inherited. Perhaps they are for bowls and flowers with really short stems? Here's a page with information and photos. The photo right under the header "What are Flower Frogs?" shows two glass ones in the middle and I have several like those, both green and flat and green and more of a lump, along with the clear glass, similarly formed. Also the little brass one to the lower left of the glass. Under the heading "Why Should You Consider Collecting Vintage Flower Frogs?" is another photo and I also have at least one ceramic frog. I didn't realize I was collecting them until I put most of them in one place. I have some around the house that I use for putting pens and pencils in (those with holes large enough.)

I mowed in back today but it was late and I didn't finish. Tomorrow morning I'll get to the last swath of tall grass between the pine tree and the compost bins. I bagged a bit more grass to drop over the kitchen waste in the new compost pile. The bucket was light because I didn't wait until it was full to empty it. The next contributions to the compost will be weeds dug out of the beds beside the driveway. They're actually quite beautiful now in variety and sizes, but they need to move aside for potatoes.

I forgot to share a wonderful little mood booster yesterday: there are a gazillion taquerias on the drive between the cat gig and my house, quite a few of them gas stations with convenience stores and food, and I stop at one every so often to buy my favorite dark Mexican beer (not everyone carries it.) Yesterday when I walked in I caught a whiff of some really well-seasoned meat and it was much more appealing than past visits when it smelled more like grease or who knows what. I picked up my beer, and as I walked past the food counter I leaned in and told her that it smelled really wonderful in there this evening. A bright smile and a thank you, and I stepped over to the register to buy my beer. A moment later a tap on the arm and she said "for you! A taco!" I was so surprised, but ate it at home and it was wonderful. I'll go by there again and pick up a couple for dinner. Good sales move, but also such a nice gesture.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 Mar 24 - 12:29 PM

There is a mystery to solve in the den; the largest of Zeke's dog beds usually has a couple of thick bathmats on top of it (the bed has a waterproof cover that is kind of slick). I used to keep the bed on top of a 4x6 wall-to-wall carpet scrap, but tossed that (too much pee and hair). The big bed slides around now so I stabilized it on a rubber-based doormat and the two bathmats back on top. Yesterday morning one of those mats had vanished. Not in the yard, not in any other room of the house, and not in the garage where there are a couple of dog houses in the stall. I am pretty sure Cookie dragged it somewhere. The search continues. It may well be in plain sight masquerading as something else.

Must set a timer for myself to put the spare senior dog food on the porch this afternoon in time for pickup. That'll clear three bulky bags from the kitchen table.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 Mar 24 - 05:17 PM

And the answer is: it was under a piece of furniture, a library table with a shelf between the legs so it was out of sight.

Dog food is on the porch, awaiting pickup. Current cat gig is done, nothing more until 10 days from now when another trip is scheduled. My local special projects fund is very happy these days.

The home sleep study is scheduled for next week; the folks at this place are a bit difficult. They won't proceed with making an appointment until they have your credit card on file, despite insurance covering everything. Expensive equipment is the reason. I will pick it up, but it seems if they charge me $20 and mail it I can keep it. I asked if it is useful for anything else once the study is finished, and the answer is that it is good for 10 more sleep studies. So, a gadget I'd probably never use again. If I require another sleep study after this, then is the time to consider keeping the device. I suppose they would want to do a follow-up if a treatment is recommended, but I'll cross the pillow when I come to it.

Out to mow the rest of the lawn.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 28 Mar 24 - 07:29 PM

Fifty milligrams of Prednisone is enough to make me wobbly and stupid, but my cough is improving.

Hurrah.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 Mar 24 - 08:20 PM

How long it is going to take to taper off of that dose?

While eating dinner I realized I should spend the evening putting away all of the stuff sitting on various surfaces in that part of the kitchen, then work outward from there.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 29 Mar 24 - 09:30 AM

Apparently, tapering off Prednisone is not the doctrinal thing it used to be, Stilly, at least not for problems like my wheezy lungs. The course I’m on now is 50 mg per day for a week, followed by 25 mg per day for another week. Then done, and shift to an inhaled steroid — fluticasone, in my case.

I like my kitchen counters clear of everything but the toaster oven, the cats’ water fountain, and a pump bottle of hand soap beside the faucet. No “décor” or abandoned mail, no dirty dishes or food sculling about. It’s a small galley, so clutter makes it non-functional as a work space. I don’t do much complex cooking these days, but I like to believe that I could launch a four-course meal without experiencing a crisis.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 29 Mar 24 - 10:20 AM

That makes sense - I was on a low dose (10mg) but for a few months as the PMR retreated, and then had to taper by a mg a month. That was as much to keep the PMR from returning as to taper. Total I was on that very low dose for about 18 months. That's why all of the bone density follow-up now.

My kitchen has things out that 1) I use all of the time (the toaster oven, the electric kettle, the cutting boards, the kitchen waste bin) and 2) things I would forget I had and never use (the FoodSaver) and big things that don't really store well anywhere else (the bowls for things like potatoes and fresh fruit that don't belong in the fridge, and the Kitchenaid stand mixer). The gadgets in cupboards are out of sight so I forget to use them in meal prep (and forget to fix the kinds of meals they are meant for). I suspect I have more counter space to start with. But it was the table and the Hoosier Kitchen that needed clearing for that area to look better. They're both in great shape today, and I do need to boot the old mail off of the peninsula.

A sad note this morning; LilyFestre's mother was diagnosed with stomach cancer. They have a Caring Bridge account set up for more information.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 29 Mar 24 - 11:13 AM

Ah, I get it. I have a dining room and a pantry, and therefore have places to put large things out of the way but still handy. Also, my compulsive mind doesn't let go of details like the existence of the Food-Saver and the lemon reamer. The blender and the kettle live in a cabinet, the food processor and the stand mixer have spots in the pantry, and if I could find a niche to accommodate the toaster oven, it too would get off the counter.

Over the last three years, I emptied the kitchen and dining room of a great deal of stuff that had accumulated over the previous four decades. Once all the duplicates were gone, and the gadgets that never worked out, along with Edmund's extensive collection of baking tackle that I never used and never will, suddenly I had acres of space in the cabinets and drawers and everything had a place to be. Relative serenity ensued.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 29 Mar 24 - 12:31 PM

This is where I'm learning about the ADHD brain and why, if the FoodSaver is not in view, when I need to use it I'll be pulling out other things and typically do three other chores before I ever get back to sealing the steaks or chicken or whatever - often times not actually getting to that first task until much later. Since the storing of meat is meant to save money and preserve quality I leave it out to be extremely convenient to use. Several years ago when I cleared and organized the kitchen cupboards I left them loosely packed (versus stuffed) so I can easily see what is there. I also built a tiny pantry in the hall for the big things like the roaster oven, baking sheets, muffin pans, canning jars, and large storage pieces. A few tools on the counters removes some of the circular aspect of tasks - moving from one to another to another and finally back to the first.

Lawns are being mowed in the neighborhood this morning. I feel the pull to go into the yard and start digging and planting. I can go in circles in the yard also, but it adds up to progress.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 30 Mar 24 - 11:50 AM

Dupont:

TIRED but I shall add a bit to what SRS posted. That was on a Friday, and on Sunday, I brought in the groceries, fell into a stuffed chair, and kept on doing the chores. On Monday it hurt to sit, on Weds, I got a call about - I'm not sure what; I was screaming in pain, told to go to ER. Fractured vertebrae. Morphine is not great! Finally went home with morphine pills and have had the worst March of my life. R has been taking good care of me. As of yesterday, I have been almost comfortable walking and almost no pain as long as I move carefully.

When is washing your hair a major success? YAY!

R has been taking good care of me and enjoying cooking, cleaning up K and more! Stuff I have not had the energy for in weeks or months. Realizing that I have been in increasingly poor health long before the preliminary diagnosis last month. several trips to the hospital in various departments for various tests; R understands but my brain has been fried. Petscan on 6th may give some answers.

Having someone come to clean house before my #2 son arrives around 18th April. (Happy 61 Birthday to my dear son on 1 April! And he first found out on FB! I am, indeed a crappy mother! On the 31 March 1963, as I paced the floor (in labour) of my beloved house we had designed and built, I seemed to think the worst thing that could happen would be for this wee mite to have April Fools Day as a birthday.

R and I took a break yesterday and he drove us along the edge of the St.Lawrence, a sunny, windy day with two wind surfers enjoying it. This residential road, about 50 feet away from the river and totally parallel for a fair distance, a great view across to the north shore.

This situation is exhausting.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 30 Mar 24 - 12:25 PM

Hi, Dorothy! I'm glad to see you back on the board, though sorry that you're in the wars.

Having someone in to clean is such a good idea.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 30 Mar 24 - 01:07 PM

Dorothy I'm glad to read that you're getting good attention and help at the house. It was obvious in earlier posts that you were progressively feeling worse. We're all getting older, but staying healthy and active relative to our age is the goal. Fingers crossed for the upcoming scan.

When I got up today I resolved to start spring cleaning in ernest. Bed linens changed, all towels and bathmats into the laundry, vacuuming rugs and then mopping floors. Work in the garden soon. I should flatten some of the cardboard boxes that have recently arrived for recycling. I can't use every single one for eBay shipping, some have to go, but they also can be placed under mulch in the garden, so they won't go to recycling until I've mulched paths around the raised beds. FedEx just texted about two large boxes of dog food delivered to the porch—except I checked and Tractor Supply shrink wrapped the dog food bags in plastic for shipping. The cardboard at least has other uses, the plastic goes into the trash.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: keberoxu
Date: 30 Mar 24 - 08:10 PM

Good to hear from Dorothy and especially happy to know that her significant other is so solicitous and caring. That's good news.

Charmion, I hope Easter Sunday goes well for you, especially in church.

Eliza/Senoufou, Don't let that gall bladder get you down!


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: keberoxu
Date: 31 Mar 24 - 06:48 PM

Happy Eastertide, everyone.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 31 Mar 24 - 08:09 PM

I am reminded to thaw a piece of the frozen leg of lamb for dinner, which will be served with hummus and pita on the side. I hope everyone is breathing well and can smell the delicious dinners they are cooking or being served, if you're doing something special.

Today was part two of cleaning the SUV (I washed it yesterday), in which I used the brush on the end of the vacuum hose on carpets and seats, then washed windows inside and out. This after I looked up detailing businesses. The costs aren't bad but these services seem to involve stay-on treatments on the hard surfaces, rug detergents with fragrances, and who knows what else that I don't want to read all of the labels of or smell for the next six months. Telling someone not to do a regular part of the job almost guarantees they'll do it anyway, and the last time someone cleaned my vehicle the steering wheel was greasy from a vinyl-cleaning product.

The blue bearded iris are starting to open; I feared none would show up this year. I still haven't seen a hint of the white ones. There is a blue plant that always comes up in the midst of a bunch of dusky yellow, and even if I try to dig it out, a blue one still comes back there. Of course that is the first one that bloomed.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 01 Apr 24 - 10:16 AM

I love having my car detailed. As some folks adore the spa experience, with varnish on their toes and fingers and expensive stuff slathered on their faces, I enjoy handing my car over for the full scrub from bumper to bumper and roof to wheels. Not being particularly sensitive to chemical whiffs -- Mother Nature is more of a problem -- I am not distressed by the aroma of Armor-All. The slickness of freshly washed Gorilla Mats under my feet, the gleam of buffed body-work ... Of course, it only lasts until the next time I drive on a dirt road or past a ploughed field, but how long is a hair-do good for?

I made it to church on Easter Sunday, but not to the choir stalls -- too weak. This lung thing has kicked my ass to the extent that I wonder if it was/is more pneumonia than bronchitis (no word from the doc on the chest x-ray). I slept through the night and did not cough convulsively on rising today, which is huge progress. But cooking a simple meat-and-two-veg dinner for two (Alden came to help me eat it) was almost more than I could manage yesterday, and today I'm saving all my energy for choir practice. I probably won't be able to sing much, but I have to recover the Haydn scores that we borrowed from a choir in Regina.

Today I take the last 50-mg dose of Prednisone; starting tomorrow, the dose drops to 25 mg for another week. It really is a miracle drug -- and cheap! -- but I feel weird all the time when I'm on it. No benefits without costs in this life ... !


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 01 Apr 24 - 04:04 PM

I like your analogy to a spa day for the car! Armor-All - that's the name I couldn't think of. Ok on the tires, not in the vehicle itself. Someone pointed out that there are folks who will travel to you to do detailing so I'll make inquiries.

I blew off a meeting today - one of the self-care things you can do if the preparations and travel to the activity are liable to not be worth the social reward of the event itself.

There is heavy weather headed this way tonight so I'll get a walk with the dogs in early and do some garden work (spread the dry fertilizer) so it can get watered in with this round of rain. I don't put it where it will wash away, I want it to soak in (this is an organic dry granular product) that generally goes around trees, shrubs, the garden and flower beds.


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