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DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024

Charmion 01 Apr 24 - 04:46 PM
Stilly River Sage 03 Apr 24 - 12:01 AM
Stilly River Sage 03 Apr 24 - 12:57 PM
Mrrzy 03 Apr 24 - 03:09 PM
Stilly River Sage 03 Apr 24 - 10:30 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Apr 24 - 09:45 PM
Stilly River Sage 05 Apr 24 - 11:18 AM
Charmion 05 Apr 24 - 01:20 PM
Stilly River Sage 06 Apr 24 - 05:07 PM
Stilly River Sage 07 Apr 24 - 10:38 AM
Dorothy Parshall 07 Apr 24 - 08:40 PM
Charmion 08 Apr 24 - 01:27 PM
Sandra in Sydney 08 Apr 24 - 07:24 PM
Stilly River Sage 08 Apr 24 - 10:05 PM
Charmion 09 Apr 24 - 10:31 AM
Bat Goddess 09 Apr 24 - 02:36 PM
pattyClink 09 Apr 24 - 07:06 PM
Stilly River Sage 09 Apr 24 - 07:13 PM
Bat Goddess 09 Apr 24 - 08:02 PM
Stilly River Sage 09 Apr 24 - 10:37 PM
Bat Goddess 10 Apr 24 - 09:54 AM
Bat Goddess 10 Apr 24 - 06:47 PM
Bat Goddess 10 Apr 24 - 08:02 PM
Stilly River Sage 10 Apr 24 - 11:53 PM
Mrrzy 11 Apr 24 - 09:30 AM
Charmion 11 Apr 24 - 03:35 PM
Stilly River Sage 11 Apr 24 - 04:33 PM
pattyClink 12 Apr 24 - 09:25 AM
Stilly River Sage 12 Apr 24 - 11:50 AM
Stilly River Sage 12 Apr 24 - 07:10 PM
Bat Goddess 13 Apr 24 - 05:35 AM
Sandra in Sydney 13 Apr 24 - 08:19 AM
pattyClink 13 Apr 24 - 09:20 AM
Stilly River Sage 13 Apr 24 - 11:20 AM
pattyClink 13 Apr 24 - 12:22 PM
Stilly River Sage 14 Apr 24 - 10:53 AM
Bat Goddess 14 Apr 24 - 01:40 PM
Stilly River Sage 14 Apr 24 - 03:25 PM
Stilly River Sage 14 Apr 24 - 06:45 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Apr 24 - 11:33 AM
Charmion 15 Apr 24 - 12:03 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Apr 24 - 06:33 PM
Stilly River Sage 15 Apr 24 - 11:04 PM
pattyClink 16 Apr 24 - 08:34 AM
Bat Goddess 16 Apr 24 - 09:37 AM
Charmion 16 Apr 24 - 11:00 AM
Stilly River Sage 16 Apr 24 - 11:21 AM
Bat Goddess 16 Apr 24 - 08:25 PM
Stilly River Sage 16 Apr 24 - 09:51 PM
Charmion's brother Andrew 17 Apr 24 - 09:05 AM
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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 01 Apr 24 - 04:46 PM

The blue-eyed grass and Lenten roses (hellebores) are blooming in my garden, and the daffodils that survived the last snowstorm are making the big effort to get their petals out. It's a really beautiful day in Perth County.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Apr 24 - 12:01 AM

Today's trip to the new repair shop was an eye-opener. I expected to wait a few hours and leave with new brakes, paying about $600, and with a diagnosis for the next repair (the noisy fan.)

These folks are smart - before they take the wheels off they examine the vehicle (with a flashlight and a mirror) and determined that I have about 10,000 miles left on the front brakes, and even more on the rear. So, no brake job needed. They took a look at the blower on the fan to see if they could tell what was wrong, and couldn't reproduce the noise, so I drove around the neighborhood while Edgar rode and we listened. I pushed the buttons that usually caused it, turned corners in the way that set it off - nothing. It seems that by simply examining the blower, when it was put back it was secured and it had been loose, so that was the problem. No more rattling. Again, no repair. But I heard someone say something about an inspection - "do you do inspections here? Mine is due." So after two checks and the inspection, I left 2.5 hours later after paying $25.50 for the state inspection.

Nissan and Jewell (the shop near my house) both said the brakes needed new pads, but the mechanics who actually do the work said they didn't. It's about "two oil changes from now" they said (5,000 per oil change). If they'd been able to identify a repair that needed to be made on the fan, the charge is $78, but if they do the repair, they just charge for the repair. Jewell was going to charge $189 to diagnose before any repair, and it isn't reduced if you do the repair there. You can guess where I'll be going for any future work. And perhaps all I'll need to do is pull up and have Edgar lay his hands on the vehicle. :-)


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Apr 24 - 12:57 PM

I have a growing mental list of things that I can possibly return to their default states now that I don't have a Labrador retriever in the house.

  • In the shower the other day it dawned on me that the soap is in the rack hanging from the shower because if soap was left anywhere low he would eat it. I lost quite a few bars of good olive oil soap that way.

  • The trash in the kitchen is on top of the dryer. It may stay there, as too tempting with food waste.

  • All other rooms' trash containers are on counters or shelves. Why? He ate used facial tissues when he could find them.

  • The dog food is stored inside an antique trunk because he could nudge the top off of the canister.

  • The toilet seat lid is left down, because he would drink from it. That will stay down; even the lid doesn't stop Pepper, she can nudge it up if she really wants. (I sometimes leave a tissue box on top of the closed lid just to see if it is moved or knocked off. That is enough to dissuade her.)

  • The large brass "toy bin" that I set up when Zeke came to live here. A friend with a long history with Labs said they thrive when they have routines like a place to find the toys when they want to chew or fetch, etc. And it meant I could pick up toys around the house and he still knew where they were.

  • Changing the dog leash setup. I use a woven nylon webbing type, and had knots tied in them at the positions where I held them walking the dogs positioned directly beside me, not out in front. Cookie now has the longer leash and I have to retie the knots since she is shorter than Zeke by several inches.


Other changes will occur to me as I continue to unwind our version of Dog World 3.0; the 2.0 environment is simpler, smaller, and much tidier.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Mrrzy
Date: 03 Apr 24 - 03:09 PM

It's like the opposite of oh, dear, the kid has learned to locomote!

I can't decide if eating some carbs for a while helps my OCD or makes my messiness worse...


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Apr 24 - 10:30 PM

Mrrzy, I just got a copy of the latest Dr. Amen book that goes with the lecture running these days on PBS. He's talking about food and brain types; this isn't new, but now that I am aware of the ADHD I'm learning that some changes might help. More protein, and earlier in the day, for example. I have a bookmark ready and a pencil and postit notes to use while reading. I don't often buy self-help books, but this one might confirm some things I've wondered about and may offer dietary guidance. My GP has told me a couple of times that I need to get more protein in my diet.

The day was spent running errands; after my haircut I took a friend to lunch and after, picked up a BBQ grill that he needed to rehome. It's about half the size of the one I use now and more advanced (steel plates instead of lava rocks radiating heat). When he told me he had baked bread in it I made a mental note to clean it up and look at the footprint; this is smaller and for one person, I might actually use it more. The older big one heats up so much more area that goes unused. And baking bread in it? In the summers here, any cooking in the house heats the kitchen; the more you can do outside, the better. The old one would then go on one of the Freecycle or Buy Nothing pages.

But wait! Picking up the grill wasn't the end of the running; my friend with the brain injury often needs help setting up electronic devices, and he needed to return a TV to other friends and buy his own. So I stopped by there to look at how the old one was set up then we headed to Target (after shopping online at various places). I need to return tomorrow with a plank that he can put across the top of the small cabinet where the old TV sat. That had a pedestal base, the new one is larger with two spread out legs wider than the cabinet. For now, the new TV is set up and gets the cable signal. It's on the floor and the door won't hit it. I loved that the first channel that came on was MSNBC - I told him he was a man after my own heart. :)

Here at home the grill is unloaded and tomorrow I'll clean it up. Sitting beside my old grill in the garage it is a lot more compact, but my friend assures me it is plenty large to grill a spatchcocked chicken. That's a good sign! My instinct to recycle and reuse is such that if I can't use this grill I'll find a good home for it.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Apr 24 - 09:45 PM

As is sometimes the case with grills left to languish in yards, the rehomed one is in need of parts and TLC. I can buy steel screws and secure the loose side table, but the cast iron grates are deplorable. The diffusers are adequate. A comparable grill new would cost four times the price of replacing emitters and grates. The smaller size is in its favor. I'll start with putting it together (screws are cheap) and then test it with my LP tank and decide from there if I want to do more. For now, it's on the list of things to work on with no special trips.

The lawn is growing crazy fast and I'll attack the front tomorrow.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Apr 24 - 11:18 AM

Hopefully as we approach the weekend the (either one) carbs or no-carbs diet question will soon be answered by Mrrzy, and Charmion will step lightly off of the low-dose Prednisone and have her voice back; whether she has the will to do all of the choir paperwork is another matter. Here, a home sleep study has concluded and the gear is ready to be returned.

My museum scanning is pushed to next week after a skylight in the building broke overnight Thursday and I imagine the amount of the glass that rained down was substantial (they're very large pieces over the atrium). Closed to the public for several days as they continue cleaning and replace the now missing piece of glass. This frees up time for garden work before I run several errands.

My Mom would have turned 102 this week; she didn't make it past 76 after an adulthood spent smoking. By my age she had already had several major health crises, so here's hoping that 19 years of her second-hand smoke didn't have similar effects on me and the other sibs. She'd have loved seeing how my kids turned out, and since my son now lives in her area she would have enjoyed a growing relationship, as does my sister now.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 05 Apr 24 - 01:20 PM

Still at 25 mg of Prednisone per day — not a low dose, but not outré either. The most popular side effect — irritability — is fully engaged, so it’s good I don’t have any deadlines or responsibilities beyond keeping the cats fed. I’m very weak, however; able to do one thing at a time for a few minutes, and that’s it. I can drive to church or the supermarket but no farther, and my singing voice is accurate but wobbly.

I’ve finished the antibiotic and the last dose of Prednisone goes down the hatch on Monday.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Apr 24 - 05:07 PM

Typo earlier, meant to say "lower." That 25 is still higher than any I took during PMR. I don't know how that higher amount feels, and hope never to experience it!

It's a windy day today, and I'm not feeling terribly motivated to do much. That said, I'll head into the back and at least scoop and see if I can move myself to pull a few of the copious weeds and prepare another bed for planting. Or go pick up free mulch. Or walk the dogs. I am feeding cats tonight to start a week-long run, though this week may involve transporting one of them from the vet (where he is now) home during the week, once they're ready to release him. I hope this isn't the one who howls the whole way or evacuates his bowels on the trip. I'll have a large box handy to put the carrier into just in case.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Apr 24 - 10:38 AM

Work on the free grill has progressed; with a few stainless steel screws I was able to re-attach the side shelf, returning full work surface functionality. A retired baking sheet is now filled with soapy water soaking one of the grates. It appears to have a major encrustation of cooked meat and sauce that might be improved upon. Either the crust is cleared off of these grates or replacements will be purchased, but to test it once I'll use the old ones after they're cleaned. This is the current equivalent grill with the same features as the five-year-old one. The question always is how much time am I willing to dedicate to a project once it looks like it will pan out, versus buying a new one. The grate cleaning is the last part, so not too much work so far. (I had points with one of my credit cards so looked around and found a Dremel tool; I've needed one for ages so ordered it along with a wire brush attachment to clobber the grill.)

If I adopt this I'll have to clean the old one and offer it up, so I still have grill cleaning in the near future.

The kitchen got a cleaning last night and laundry goes in today. Still using the dryer because one clothesline support post is standing at a drunken angle after last fall's branch collapse from next door. I have to dig at the side of the concrete footer and reposition the post (adding more concrete for stability.) No need to dig an entirely new hole. There is still a large tree next door, but most of the threat from branches has gone now that the side came down.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 07 Apr 24 - 08:40 PM

Dupont:

Trip to hospital - much walking! wore me out and "you will get a call in five days" re findings was a bummer. I want to know the prognosis! R may get to the clinic tomorrow for info.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 08 Apr 24 - 01:27 PM

The last dose of Prednisone is now history, and I went to the Y for aquafit class this morning.

And that's my limit. I'm still weak and groggy, but a bit more capable every day.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 08 Apr 24 - 07:24 PM

YAH!!!


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 08 Apr 24 - 10:05 PM

Dorothy and Charmion, keep getting better!

I mowed about 25% of the back yard this evening, just to get started and to clear around the regular paths for the dogs but thunder tells me it might be too wet to mow the rest until later in the week.

The eclipse was wonderful, we saw the totality at the moment the moon moved completely over the sun - what a blast, seeing the rays radiating out from the edges! A cloud moved over for about a minute, then cleared again near the very end. My neighbors came over when I realized they didn't have any glasses. I had one pair and we passed them around. No one in their right mind needed to stand out there the whole time staring at the changing crescent. It was a nice visit, and though we hoped the neighbor's chickens might confirm that the light had disappeared, they didn't make a peep.

I wasted time this afternoon trying to retrieve some canning jars, but when I arrived at the place realized she was just piling trash at the curb and telling our Buy Nothing group that we could get what was left without making any provision for us to pick up what we asked for. She had no intention of isolating items and letting people speak for them, she just wanted people to come haul off her trash (clearing a parent's estate). She and her snotty sister are no longer in our Buy Nothing group (when I politely complained that this isn't how the group works, the woman who posted the listing was rude and was blocked, then her sister piled on and I blocked her.)

I often list things that I could sell on eBay, but due to the work involved, have decided instead to donate it via this group. When I list one of the BBQ grills once I've decided for sure the one to keep I'll clean the other, package the parts for transport, and understand that while this is an older model it works, and for someone on a budget, all they need to do for it to work is get the canister of LP gas. I wouldn't consider putting it at the curb and telling the group about it to see if they can beat a neighbor who might grab it first.

I do sometimes put things at the curb a day ahead of the trash, but not the way she did. I had a basketball backstop out there one time, the folks who got it were thrilled because they had kids, they were in the neighborhood, and they would do the work to put it back in the ground and set it up. They actually knocked to ask if it was ok to take it. That was a better item for someone to drive past, get a look at, and decide they could use. I don't know if the distinctions I'm attempting to make are clear, but I'm trying to be philosophical about the whole Reuse/Reuse part of recycling. If I have something at the curb for the trash that I know would be a rude surprise if someone carted it off to their house, I put a note on the front saying why it is in the trash. Like the rug that I tossed after Poppy died - "no, you don't want this rug - it's full of dog pee." The woman who set off my rant wasn't playing fair in our group according to the various informal ways that things are redistributed in this part of town.

The rain has started so Pepper will be underfoot. This is the edge of a bigger storm, I expect it to end in a few minutes, but it is enough rain that I won't mow tomorrow or worry about watering my friend's pots after I feed her cats. Time to wrap up the computer work and get a book to read.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 09 Apr 24 - 10:31 AM

The eclipse was a non-event on Glendon Road, Stratford. It was dusky for a while, then it wasn't, and the caravan moved on.

Meanwhile, in another part of the forest, I have decided to adopt a very low-carbohydrate diet, at least for a while. I believe I am sliding toward Type II diabetes, which would be zero surprise as both my brothers have it, and I am lugging around 12 kilos of excess weight that just won't shift. I have booked an appointment with my doctor to be tested in all the traditional invasive ways, but I see no reason not to change dietary gears now, while I'm thinking about it.

This morning, I went through the pantry and extracted everything that isn't on the "good for keto" list I found on the Internet. There's not much left.

According to Gary Taubes, author of "Rethinking Diabetes", "The Case for Keto", and a whole host of other books on managing diabetes, this diet will compel me to cook again -- but I can eat cheese with near abandon. This week I bought avocados for the first time in my life. Not very interesting as a foodstuff, but remarkably satisfying.

Does any of my fellow declutterers have experience with "keto" diets?


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 09 Apr 24 - 02:36 PM

I haven't had much time to post here in the past couple weeks. Been juggling more stuff than I care to think about, and being without power for four days and unconnected with the rest of the world except when I was using wifi at McDonald's hasn't helped.

Now I'm dancing as fast as I can to catch up on the things I couldn't do Thursday through Sunday because I had no electricity and no water. (And no wifi and very iffy cell service.) Couldn't get out of the driveway until Saturday. (Coffee! Hot meals! Wifi!)

But today I'm taking a box of glassware to Goodwill (every little bit helps) and getting some grocery shopping done. Prepping a package and taking it to the post office will have to wait until tomorrow. It's just one thing too many today. (Sending some books and "Designing Women" DVDs to a friend who was also my late sister's best friend.)

Got most of the laundry and most of the dishes taken care of yesterday.

Seems as if everything else is just taking a lot longer than anticipated. Called my optometrist's office this morning to find out when I can expect my new glasses (stopped wearing hard contacts about a year ago) and, because of computer problems and the power failure over most of New Hampshire, she said 5-6 weeks. I just hope I've got them before Mother's Day weekend when I've got an out of town commitment.

Later!
Linn


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: pattyClink
Date: 09 Apr 24 - 07:06 PM

Real keto diets are hard to pursue, but can be just the thing if you need to break away hard from sugar and carbohydrates. I have found it more do-able to pursue a looser low-carb plan and gotten good results. Our modern diet, and particularly the tasty, comforting, and cheaper foods can leave us taking in SO many more carbohydrates than the body can deal with.

The modern commercial slice of bread is so large and has added sugar, gives us a ridiculous amount of carbs in just a plain sandwich, never mind other baked goods. And the 'healthier' breads seem to be the worst. Checking labels for net carb grams on whatever breads you use can help you find one that is more modest; or some people just get bread and all baked goods out of their life while on their program.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Apr 24 - 07:13 PM

Charmion, the champ of the Keto lifestyle is our fellow member LilyFestre. She posts mostly on FB these days. She walks most mornings along with the Keto diet for the family, and has worked off lot of weight. Right now her mother is ill and she hasn't walked as much (I saw a post about walking yesterday) but I suspect they're sticking to the diet as a matter of habit.

I'm shifting my diet to more protein in the morning and the carbs later and it does seem to curb the sugar cravings. Snacks lately are savory: I made another batch of the smoky gouda and pecans spread I discovered recently. I pick from a couple of recipes - mine ends up with shredded gouda, sour cream, finely chopped pecans, a little Worcestershire sauce and some powdered onion. I use tortilla and flax seed chips to pile a spoonful of the spread on. Meat in my diet is usually an ingredient in dishes, but I'm changing that. I eat more fish and chicken than beef, and lately have added back lamb; I cut up a leg of lamb and freeze portions. The MyFitnessPal is set to track carbs, protein and fat.

The alternate day fasting worked for me to lose weight two years ago and is what I'm doing to lose a few pounds now. I recently listened to a lecture about the problem of some of the forms of fasting - those in which the calories are eaten within an 8 hour period seem to be flagged as possibly associated with some health risk factors. I keep to 500 calories on the "fasting" days but I've never restricted it to within a few hours. It's unscientific but I find on the days when I eat 1200 calories I get enough of the foods that are treats that I don't feel deprived for a day when I eat less.

Linn, I stopped going to the optometrist's office for making glasses because they were always so expensive. Having insurance only let them gouge both me and the insurance company. I use Zenni, and have been happy with the quality and price, and I daresay if you entered your details into an order at Zenni you'd have new glasses in a couple of weeks. There's a learning curve to fill in the information from the printout Rx from the optometrist (you should ask for a copy), but once you figure it out, returning for new updated orders is easy.

Heavy rain forecast overnight and tomorrow. I worked in the garage today to scour off some baked-on grease at the front of the grill hood. I used a tool (no idea the original intent - it was from my Dad's stash) with a razor blade at an angle and slowly peeled back some of the grease (baked on like enamel) and scrubbed the rest with steel wool. This work has me eyeing the huge lump of the older grill under it's nylon cover (held in place with a bungee cord) - can hardly wait to downsize if the new one works well.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 09 Apr 24 - 08:02 PM

Maggie, you forget that I worked as an optical technician at Sears Optical and JCPenney Optical for five years (we were licensed businesses within the stores). I stopped wearing my RGP hard contacts about a year ago. I just didn't wear them often enough. I'm currently wearing a pair of progressives that are about 20 or more years old. I just found out that I actually have vision insurance for the first time in my life. It paid for my exam and substantially towards a new pair of progressives. If I hadn't had insurance, I would have gone directly to JCPenney Optical when they had one of the sales that worked best for me. I ordered the pair of progressives through my optometrist because I wanted a better lens (the three different progressive lenses sold by US Vision are adequate, but not the best available) than would be available at JCP Optical. I would order single vision glasses online, but would never consider ordering progressives. For correct placement of the lens in front of the eye, it takes someone actually measuring segment height. (I know my PD — pupillary distance.) And an online optician couldn't phyiscally fit the glasses — progressives usually need a little tweaking. (And I know of no optometrist's office that would fit a person with the glasses they bought online.)

I'm going to take my Rx, though, when the sale is right and buy a second pair (for fashion reasons as much as to have a good spare pair; my old prescription is just enough out of whack that I have a headache after driving for any length of time) at JCPenney Optical.

And I have multiple pairs of single vision glasses for back ups as well.

Back when I got that 20+ year old pair of progressives (which my then optometrist was insisting on), I could never get used to them because I wore my contacts 99% of the time. (I'm nearsighted, so the contacts were for distance; I used cheap readers for closeup.) But a few months ago the pair of single vision distance glasses I was wearing to drive got misplaced. I rummaged in my nightstand drawer and for some reason the only pair I could find was the progressives. I needed to go somewhere, so put them on not expecting much, but, voila! I could see both distance and closeup and everywhere in between with absolutely no problem whatsoever.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Apr 24 - 10:37 PM

You're right, I completely forgot about your working at the optical place. And please don't read my criticism of the optical store at my (last) optometrist's office as my view of the entire world of opticians. You're also right about the progressive lenses - those are different. I wore them for a little while and switched back to regular lenses with bifocals because I was tired of bobbing my head around to find the focal part I needed in the lenses at any given time. I typically ended up spending about $400 on a new pair of glasses because the insurance didn't pay for polycarbonate lenses and the frames that had nicer features (titanium, springy hinges, etc.) always cost more than the budget plastic pairs to choose from to stay under the plan allowance. We're creatures of habit, so I bought glasses at the doctor's office long before the online sites came along and it took a while to get comfortable with the idea of ordering online and switching.

I made the optical tech work out what my glasses would cost if I walked in without insurance. I would have been offered a "50% off" rate, and they came out (for sake of illustration) around $400. She then worked it out with my insurance: with insurance you're not offered the discount discount on any of the frames, lenses, etc., and it came out $395. Which told me they were getting a lot more out of me because I paid as much as the uninsured and the insurance company also gave them something. The last pair I bought from Zenni with a titanium frame, polycarbonate lenses (with the option I never paid for at the optometrist's - photo responsive lenses) cost $88. I learned about this place from our group participant LilyFestre. She said her agency used them when they had families needing glasses but with no budget. For lower-end plastic frames and lenses you can probably get a good pair of glasses for under $40.

Patty nailed it as far as our high-carbohydrate diets. I aim to have fruits and vegetables as much of my diet, so eating protein instead of wheat-based carbs or sugar is a good choice. I have a combination of commercial raisin bran cereal and a homemade granola (low sugar, high in nuts) that makes my gut happy, but eating that for breakfast can set me up for wanting more carbs during the day. I've started thawing a piece of fish overnight and having a piece of sauteed tilapia or sockeye salmon and a side of pan fried potatoes or a vegetable, and having the granola for lunch or even part of dinner. Mostly I have to get off of sugar snacks.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 10 Apr 24 - 09:54 AM

So many customers couldn't understand why, if they used their insurance, the insurance company didn't get the sale price. I got into trouble, though, when I suggested to customers that, if their insurance was less than optimal, use the sale rather than their insurance.

I bought my RGP hard contact lenses online for DECADES. Better price than even the annual sale prices at the shops I worked at. Half the price of what an independent optometrist would charge me.

I'm still doing the daily version of intermittent fasting — I can eat from noon-1:00ish until 8:00 p.m. Then it's only water, black coffee or tea until noon-ish the next day. But, since the start of the pandemic, I cheat. Back in 2020-2021 it was compensation for so much else being taken away. Alas, I got into the habit of cheating and, while I've been trying to get back on track, it's still a struggle. If I get really pecking, though, late ate night while reading, I can "legally cheat" by snacking on something that is very very low on the glycemic scale, such as lettuce or greens, or (as I prefer) kimchee.

My use of intermittent fasting isn't so much to lose weight (although that's a nice benefit — I lost 40 pounds painlessly in seven months) — it's to avoid the diabetes that runs on my mother's side of the family.

My snack cravings go towards the salty and crunchy side rather than sweet. My favorite daytime snack is almonds — I mix "roasted with salt" and "roasted/no salt" to keep the sodium level down. I haven't eaten potato chips since 1992 when a friend and I had a consultation with "The Mad Russian" (Yefim G. Shubentsov) in Boston. (Tom had seen him for smoking cessation, but the Mad Russian also dealt in food issues.) I saw him to get rid of my urge to find the perfect food that would solve whatever problem or mood I was beset with. After explaining to me that my body shape is the preferred standard of beauty almost everywhere in the world, he asked that I give up one food. I chose potato chips because they weren't my favorite snack; I saw them mostly as a vehicle for dip.

Coffee's ready and I hope to have a postponed weekly phone conversation with a friend who winters in Florida.

Linn


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 10 Apr 24 - 06:47 PM

Just finished making the sauce for peanut butter-sesame noodles. I'm knackered, but I figured I could get that mixed up, the pasta cooked, and the scallions chopped.

After my postponed from Sunday weekly phone call with a musician/ librarian/ teacher friend who winters near Pensacola, I got the box I forgot yesterday into the car, and packaged up those DVDs and books so I could stop at the post office on my way to Goodwill.

Stopped, too, at RiteAid to get multi vitamins. I don't go into many stores other than the grocery store because concrete floors are very painful for me. (At the grocery store I use the cart as a "walker" of sorts.) When I came out of the drugstore, I figured it would be one thing too many to go to Market Basket to get a couple more six-packs of one of Polar's limited edition seltzers — Jalapeño Citrus Margarita. I seldom drink sodas because they're too sweet. I avoid ones with HFCS, but even the craft sodas with cane sugar are too sweet, but I occasionally like a flavored seltzer. This flavor is really nice so I better stock up.

Took the box to Goodwill, then went inside to see if there was anything I couldn't live without. Spent $32, but also got a rally nice pashmina or oversize scarf that will go smashingly with several outfits I've got.

This morning started out sunny, but it clouded over before noon and spit annoyance rain (turn the wipers on, turn the wipers off, ad nauseum).


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 10 Apr 24 - 08:02 PM

Forgot to mention my real score at Goodwill today — an Apple wireless keyboard for five bucks. Mine has been acting flakey lately, so tomorrow when I have more energy, I’ll put batteries in the new one and try it out.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Apr 24 - 11:53 PM

My cat-sitting gig will end earlier than planned, and has gone remarkably free of complications because the cat that needs the most attention has been at the vet this week. I suspect the next gig will be one for the record books with new steps for the sickest one and changes in food for all feline family members.

Canine drama here at 4am; I woke to frantic barking and sounds of a struggle in the yard. I pulled on clothes and shoes and headed out with a flashlight (after covering the dog door in case someone got skunked - they get treated outside before they are allowed indoors) but it had concluded. I found no bodies, no injured dogs or wild animals, but there were whiffs of skunk. Odd, but no one is talking about what happened.

Allergies are hitting hard with the layers of antihistamines (daily tablet, nasal spray, overnight Benadryl) fully deployed.

The Dremel tool I ordered would have been too small for the task I have in mind (the tiny wire brushes are cute) so I picked up an inexpensive pack of wire brushes to use with my regular drill. Tomorrow I'll put on safety glasses, drape a heavy plastic bag over pants and shoes and test the cleaning ability on the BBQ grill. This setup is also what I need to clean surfaces before I paint all of the decorative security bars on the house windows, though that requires a softer abrasive kind of brush to scour the bars. I can see a number of long-envisioned projects getting done this spring. And it will make the house look brighter (right now the bars are painted with the original ugly dark gray that used to be on other parts of the house).

Patty, are you still on the road or have you found a place to settle?

Dorothy, I'm so pleased to read about R's attention and help and being able to make a drive.

How is everyone else doing this spring?


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Mrrzy
Date: 11 Apr 24 - 09:30 AM

Keto for 4+ years.

Finally put away my clean laundry. Found that one garment I'd forgotten I was looking for...


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 11 Apr 24 - 03:35 PM

I put away my laundry today, too.

Today I had lunch at the only restaurant I ever go to any more, where I shocked the cook by not ordering her (delicious) huevos rancheros. Instead, I had three scrambled eggs, four rashers, half an avocado, and black coffee. The world continues to revolve on its axis.

So far, going keto seems to be mostly about finding ways to add fat to the menu without resorting to ice cream.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Apr 24 - 04:33 PM

Don't lose sight of ample sources of good fiber. When the Atkins diet (akin to Keto) became all the rage the discussion of acute constipation arose.

I buy several avocados at a time and make guacamole then mound it into ice cube trays to freeze for portions. It's best to let defrost at room temperature or for ~ 20 seconds at a time in the microwave (so you don't cook it.)

Gorgeous day today. So much to do, but will I get anything done at all?


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: pattyClink
Date: 12 Apr 24 - 09:25 AM

Have had a remarkably tough and unproductive 11 days dealing with a bad head cold which apparently coincided with peak pollen-in-the-sinuses season. Thought I would never get over it.

Yesterday got stocked up on fresh foods, got frustrated trying to find someone who actually has someone available to pump propane, and called it a day. Today, the storage unit work resumes. With warmer weather hopefully the propane can wait til Monday.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Apr 24 - 11:50 AM

Patty, that kind of cold is the gift that keeps on giving isn't it? You get over the cold and then you have to get over getting over the cold. How far do you think you've gotten with clearing/organizing your storage locker at this point?

Propane is a topic I'm dealing with today; I transferred the tank from the old grill to the newer one, but to be prudent I'll take out a bowl of soapy water and a damp paper towel and do the "bubble" test - dab it on in the areas where a tank might leak and be sure it is still sound. Yesterday I used the wire brush drill attachment on the first cast iron grate and it looks much better, though it was getting dark as I finished and this morning I see I missed a few spots. The second grate has soaked in soapy water overnight before using the drill on it this morning. The cabinet wheels are kind of rough so I'll prop up the cart one end at a time and see if they need cleaning or replacement. I'm almost to the test fire point, and if it works I'll prepare the older grill for donation this weekend. I can't wait to clear out space in that part of the garage.

This morning the New York Times had a subscriber-only article about "Decuttering Sprints" to be done in 30 minutes or less. The first recommendation was to get rid of all of the old electronic power supplies, but mine are all in one place and are a handy resource to go with eBay sales, so nope, they stay.

Clear clutter from the car is the next, but I did that last week. She suggests wrangling all of the reusable shopping bags:
If you keep reusable shopping bags in your trunk, Pateras said, “the rule of thumb is to have as many as you use for your biggest grocery shopping trip.”

Ok, I do have an overflow of sizes and types of those. I wrangled the durable plastic heavy duty ones and some large cotton strong-handled ones and the rest are hanging in a bag on the closet door until I sort for donation. The crumbling basket on the SUV floor behind the front passenger seat that held Kleenex, vinyl gloves, a whisk broom, bottles of water, paper towels, etc. was emptied into a smaller cloth bin. The broken basket goes into the trash.

The third task in the article is digging stuff out from under the kitchen sink, but for some reason that area has never become the "shove-and-pile-zone" she suggests they can be. (Partly because I get mice in there sometimes and want to be able to set a trap.) I do intend to put in a new faucet one of these days and will have to move the current contents out briefly to crawl in to work, but it is organized.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Apr 24 - 07:10 PM

The initial test of the new-to-me BBQ was successful; I grilled a couple of chicken breasts. Now I need to start cleaning up the old grill and see if anyone wants it. It was sold in about 1998 and I can't find an online manual (I inherited this from the neighbors and rebuilt the insides). I'll clean it and hope to find someone who wants one they can drop off at a campsite or someone with no budget who wants a grill that works.

Good news this afternoon - the cat-sitting gig is over and she doesn't plan more trips for a while. She's participating in the neighborhood garage sale on the 20th and asked if I'd like to bring up stuff. Yes! I'll start looking around this evening. Whatever I can transport up there (and possibly have the friend with the truck make a run for me - I could offer an antique bed frame if he could take it there. But who wants antique bed frames?) Everyday I walk past stuff sitting out that has no use here—there's a lot of that. Ask low prices so it all goes.

I started some weeding this afternoon but the soil is still too wet from the rain on Tuesday and Wednesday. Tomorrow should start to be pretty good. My potatoes are sprouting in the one bed that has been planted. It is nice weather now and I'll take the dogs for a walk before I feed them.

More good news this afternoon - the mortgage bill/statement arrived today. Not only did they refund a lot of escrow last month for the coming year, they applied some of that overage to the account itself and the monthly payment has gone down by $150. (The skeptic in me feels the need to check to be sure someone didn't misplace a decimal and will come looking for it all back later . . . )


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 13 Apr 24 - 05:35 AM

Woke up from a recurring dream cycle at 4:30 this morning and my brain immediately snapped to attention, went into high gear, and refused to let me slip back into sleep. Sigh. But it’s just given me a few good decluttering ideas — what I optimistically call the guest room (well, there’s a bed in there someplace); the piles of photographs, books, and artwork in the living room; and the room I refer to as “The Room” (pronounced Thee Room”).

But first, an epiphany. If I refer to my bedroom as “my library”, I’ve immediately, for all practical purposes, decluttered it. There’s almost no floor space; it’s all taken up by piles of books, boxes of papers, stacks of magazines, letter files, the 60-odd plus 3-ring binders of The Archives, and tote bags and boxes of photographs, and the Bob Nilson drawings I’m cataloging…all more or less organized. It’s also got two walls of bookcases and several smaller bookcases. It’s majorly cluttered as a bedroom… But it’s more or less normal for a library.

So, as of right now, 5:34 a.m. on Saturday, April 13, 2024, I’m officially sleeping in my library.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 13 Apr 24 - 08:19 AM

well done!

One wall of my bedroom is covered by 2 huge bookcases almost to the ceiling (10 foot) but as I downsized my historic costume library last year it is no longer a library as only one shelf of books remains from another interest, & they can be whittled away by a number of visits to charity shops. The lowest shelf is empty, but other stuff is stored on vintage tray tables in front of the bookcase...

The shelves have been packed with some of my craft material, a mess of crafty stuff is still in my living room tho most of it would fit, if I got off my bum & moved stuff!! The rest would likely fit in several empty shelves elsewhere ...

sandra

Once upon a time I visited a charity shop that displayed a nicely homemade unit with 3 or 4 shelves of small beer glasses, each one had a decal/sticker from a different venue/town/country? Staff had added a sign saying they had 2000 more!! out the back, so I've ever since suggested to friends trying to find a home for a large collection, to take pieces to more than one shop!


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: pattyClink
Date: 13 Apr 24 - 09:20 AM

The propane hunt took a while, wound up driving way too far to find the reliable people who actually have someone on hand to pump. On the way back, stopped and got a windshield ding tended to by good people with minimum fuss and cost.

In the waning hours of the day, started weighing and measuring some boxes in storage, so I can appportion them into cargo-trailer loads. So far they average 13 pounds, and the ones over 20 lbs definitely need to be wrangled with a handcart and hoisted as little as possible if my back and I am to survive this process.

For some of them, may have to repackage into smaller/cleaner/sounder liquor boxes, and may look for a sale on half-height bins that can be more easily managed both during the move and after. I have gotten lucky in the past at an Ollie's and a now-defunct Fred's, perhaps Big Lots is worth a trek, perhaps not. Finally feeling well, I shudder at the prospect of entering a walmart full of the germs of 10,000 people a day.


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

Linn, in her teen years my daughter's room reached a point when you couldn't see any of the floor tiles because there was so much stuff covering them. I built a tall cabinet of cubbies - six up and five across. After we organized the stuff that went into them it looked good and we could see her room as I hoped. Years passed and I boxed her stuff and have my own sewing and craft items in the cubbies and that is my sewing studio. There are still a few of her things displayed on top that are out of reach unless I use a step-stool. I've managed to keep my bedroom clear and at the foot of the bed set up a carpet and yoga mats for exercise (to try it in the den would mean dogs in my face and underfoot). The rest of the house is a work in progress.

Patty, is this a collection you're curating in the storage locker? What kinds of things are you selling or donating?

Sandra, whenever I see the online photos for some of the estate sales going on in the county I've been known to send photos of the glass and china items to my kids and tell them to just shoot me if I ever try collecting like that again. I'm still downsizing, though beer steins aren't part of it (though I have some tall beer glasses and could include those in the garage sale items next weekend.)

Dorothy, keep resting and getting better. You sound more cheerful now.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: pattyClink
Date: 13 Apr 24 - 12:22 PM

What is in storage is belongings that are not traveling around with me. A very stripped down bunch of linens, kitchenware, memorabilia, a few heirlooms,'keeper' books, 4 small pieces of furniture, minerals, etc. What I really wanted to keep after purging the house via much selling/donating/junking.

So purging is not the main activity, though there is a bit to do. I always forget to weed down the pass-along books down to zero before I pull up to storage to do seasonal change-outs, so they've piled up. Already spoke to a librarian about bringing them to her used book sale room.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Apr 24 - 10:53 AM

This morning I'm processing (canning) a small batch of applesauce. I use it in baking to replace part of the oil in some of the quick bread recipes that otherwise are too greasy for words (pumpkin bread and zucchini bread, in particular.)

Made a run to the last chance grocery for the Saturday market for fruits and vegetables and one case of sparkling mineral water - fingers crossed it isn't flat, which is sometimes the situation; if a batch of the water is less-than perfect it ends up there. It's still ok to drink, but would be the reason it was discounted by about $5 a case.

And I may have bitten off more than I can chew—they had huge rolls of freezer paper that is great for making patterns for sewing. The coated side goes to the fabric and you iron it on and do your cutting, then it can be picked up and ironed on again and again for more cutting. I've never seen boxes of this like you would find waxed paper or aluminum foil, though I know it must be available. The roll is 36" wide and very long - I estimate it weighed over 50 pounds. I'll plan to roll smaller ~10' long pieces and give or sell them. It may be a lifetime supply (and it cost $8). This is the "one step back" part of frugally buying something (but be careful what you wish for.)


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 14 Apr 24 - 01:40 PM

Maggie, printers that have web presses often have ends of paper rolls (36" wide) that they give away.

Back in 1982 when Tom and I got married, a friend got us a roll end of white paper. We used it (cut to length) to cover the tables at our potluck reception.

Forty-two years later, I haven't made a dent in the "end roll". I use it for wrapping paper (sometimes rubberstamped or covered with other art)and many other things.

But...I'd say you probably have no need of any more paper rolls right now. ;-)

Linn


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Apr 24 - 03:25 PM

I know the rolls of paper you're talking about, we had one of those at our house when I was a kid, and Mom used to cut off chunks for us to color on and use it on tables, etc. This is a polyethylene-coated butcher paper, possibly roll ends but maybe the original size used in businesses that wrap meat, not the huge printing press monsters they use forklifts to move. A family was there buying all of the rest of the paper - they said they put it down to protect floors when painting. I'll keep that in mind if I paint.

I've begun culling items from cupboards that can go into the garage sale offerings. In the laundry room I had four paraffin oil lamps that I haven't used in years. I only use candles in glass jars now, not the exposed flames on top like these. The leftover fuel is probably worth more than the hand blown globes. But that can wait till this evening. This afternoon I'll move the old grill out of the garage and give it a cursory clean, give the grate a good cleaning, then photo and list it.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Apr 24 - 06:45 PM

The grill is listed in two places (free). I've picked a few more items to add to the garage sale offerings.

Time to walk the dogs.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Apr 24 - 11:33 AM

If I'd checked my messages last night the grill would already be gone; as it is, she'll come over this evening (the husband will help lift it after he gets home from work.)

More progress identifying garage sale objects; the things I purchased at the end of the old Labrador's life, bird feeders that aren't used now, maybe I should load some of the antique tools (homeowners in Victorian houses might enjoy yard art of this sort?)


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 15 Apr 24 - 12:03 PM

The first load for the spring rummage sale at the church will leave the building tomorrow. This group of desirable items includes two oven-to-table casseroles, a teapot, two soapdishes and a trinket box, all of the Wild Strawberry pattern from Wedgwood; five Mason Cash pudding basins of various sizes; a backpack-style picnic set; a dozen small bistro glasses; and two IKEA glass pitchers with plastic lids. I will also include a shoebox about half full of costume jewellery, mostly earrings, that I never wear. My objective is to clear the six-foot table in the basement by the end of the week.

In other news, I have completed one week of the ketogenic diet and I have lost 2.7 kilos. My jowls are almost gone -- no great loss -- and my largest trousers are a bit loose. I feel as good as person still convalescing from pneumonia can, in particular free of carb cravings. Sunday dinner was a rib steak and a large spinach salad garnished with pignoli and parmesan cheese!


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Apr 24 - 06:33 PM

Good work all around, Charmion! I pulled up MyFitnessPal and looked at the carb settings in there, and a couple of lists of keto recommended fruits and vegetables. Most of my fresh produce isn't on that list. I made a zucchini casserole this afternoon that would fit, but shifting a controlled calorie intake to reduce carbs looks like a gradual process. The oranges and apples and grapes in the fridge will be eaten. Bread is in the freezer so it isn't going bad, and it isn't eaten that often, but were I to adopt such a diet right now a lot of food would go to waste.

There's another twit on our FB buy nothing group. They don't want to bother coordinating a pickup with someone in the group so they put a fridge at the street and say come get it if it's still there as anyone else driving by could stop and pick it up in the meantime. They're going to kick me out for complaining one of these days, but that is so rude of the person making the offer. (My grill will be picked up in a couple of hours and we coordinated the time between us. One of the moderators is picking it up.) I guess I'm wearing my Ms Manners hat this month.

Feeling a bit off today; possibly allergies, possibly the higher humidity and I'm not ready to turn on the air conditioning. I haven't done a COVID test for a while so I have one running now, but I'm pretty sure it will be negative. I walked the dogs yesterday and probably got a snootful of pollen making allergies the most likely explanation.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 15 Apr 24 - 11:04 PM

The husband of the woman who asked for the grill stopped by on his way home from work, and the 48" tall grill slid into the exactly 48" wide SUV that he was driving. He said he's always wanted a gas grill but they're so expensive (don't I know! I'm on my second free reconditioned grill). This one is old but still works and will give him a new outlet for his grilling. I visualize a cookout in their yard next weekend, and am pleased to have contributed to that event. A gift that keeps on giving.

I mowed the front lawn while waiting for him to arrive. The irises (yellow - dusky and bright, blue, and white) are gorgeous right now so having the lawn trim is a good backdrop for them. This is the time of year when the yard looks its best.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: pattyClink
Date: 16 Apr 24 - 08:34 AM

Hoo-rah on the clearing out and the diet, Charmion!

SRS, it is annoying how high in carbs some veggies and fruits can be. I have to emphasize berries and melon,and for citrus go with smaller servings like the little clementines. It's hard to use up the heavier stuff before it goes bad. Luckily bananas and pineapples and grapes can freeze to be used sparingly later on.

Made good progress the last two days on sorting, filing, a little purging, repacking. Feels good to start getting things the way I want them. Today another big push, and then relocate camp. I tried a campground very close to storage because it supposedly had improved so much, but ridiculous fees and rude 'host' rule it out.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 16 Apr 24 - 09:37 AM

Maggie, I lost (it broke) a glass chimney for an antique oil lamp a couple years ago. It was a conventional-looking glass chimney except for a ring of decorative glass balls around the upper rim.

Hardware stores don't seem to carry lamp chimneys anymore... If you're deaccesioning a similar chimney (plain is perfectly okay) I can pay for it and shipping...

I no longer use oil lamps or candles around the house for safety reasons — there's lots of paper fuel around and I have a totally unpredictable cat.

I love the diffused room light of a solar/rechargeable lantern like the LuminAid. LuminAID Lantern Tested it out with this last 4-day power outage. Best reading light for power outages I've ever had. It lit my bedroom pretty much the same as my everyday bedside lamp. (I'm pretty certain I didn't pay the price shown or anywhere near it.)

I have a couple other small rechargeable camping lanterns, too, and an emergency lightbulb in the hall that will light up (when I turn on the switch) when the power fails.

I tried to do too much yesterday. I had an afternoon appointment to donate blood in Epping, the next town over to the south. After I drank juice and water and had some snacks, I got in the car to drive about 20+ minutes north to my optometrist's office to pick up my eyeglass prescription, then drove home. That errand to pick up the Rx was just a little bit too much; I was totally knackered by the time I got home. I fed Rufus and managed a little later to get some protein into me, but I was drained... Fine this morning, of course, after rest and a good night's sleep. I hadn't expected that such a simple thing as picking up a prescription was one thing too much after the blood donation.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion
Date: 16 Apr 24 - 11:00 AM

Linn, I'm surprised the outfit where you donate blood hasn't cut you off long ago. In Canada, one is typically thanked for one's services to society and told never to come back at the age of 65 or even younger, depending on haemoglobin level and rarity of blood type. My Dad, an O Negative with a robust red cell count, was cheered off the blood-donation stage at 65 -- but told not to forget how, just in case of horrible things. As an asthmatic with a marginal haemoglobin level, I haven't given blood since I was about 50.

In Ontario, lamp chimneys are sold in areas with unreliable electricity supply (in fact, rather a lot of the province), and near Mennonite and Amish communities. I still have a kerosene lamp ready for use because power failures are a thing in Perth County, and every winter can be counted on to bring at least one nasty surprise. I lived through the ice storm of January 1998 that wiped out power distribution through eastern Ontario and most of Quebec.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Apr 24 - 11:21 AM

Patty, I hope you find more pleasant hosts at the next campground! What state are you in for April? And yes, the fruit and veggies are the issue right now; I want to lose a few pounds. Stopping eating as many carbs now would keep my weight where it is; I still fit in the jeans I like, but they are snug.

For now I'll split the difference with the carbs - I have some bagged flour that I'll donate to the mutual aid fridge (there are a few other things in my pantry that can go also), and for the time being I'll cut out the other sources of wheat, and make a point of buying the lower-carb fruits and veggies as the existing supply drops. I could donate some of the veggies also, but prefer to simply step down. I won't go full-keto, but simply aim at a lower-carb routine. Years ago (high school) I lost weight that way with the simple process of keeping bread consumption to a couple of slices a day. I was a lot more active, then, walking to school (2 miles each way), etc. so I'll keep the walking and gym activity going. Meanwhile, I'll be eating my small portions of hummus with carrot sticks.

Linn, I totally agree with your concern about open flames; paper is a big part of the landscape here. And you sussed it correctly - I do have a hurricane chimney here. When I used the glass oil candles I would set one on a round mirror and then the tall chimney standing on the mirror around the candle. Yes, I can send it to you. This isn't the type of chimney that would fit the old fashioned kerosene lamp, it stands on the table. Is that what you were needing? I do have an antique chimney lamp I won't part with that is the vivid red ruby glass made with gold that came from my great aunt's house. It had a wider base (was one of the railroad lamps that became a famous part of "red light districts") that I sometimes set around a votive size candle.

Rain is forecast for Saturday so my friend will let me know if the neighborhood votes to postpone the community garage sale to another day. She has a large carport to set up under, but rain would reduce the shopper participation. I'll continue to collect things; if her garage sale doesn't happen perhaps I should bite the bullet and do my own. Once you start thinking about it the thing can happen (though they are a lot of work. I have a friend with stuff in storage who could stand to bring items over here to sell.) In our village we can only do two of them a year, but one sale every few years is plenty for me.

It rained overnight (rainfall was heavy enough to wake me) so no more mowing for a couple of days.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 16 Apr 24 - 08:25 PM

Charmion, I gave blood for the first time in my life back in February of this year. I don’t know if there’s an age limit, but, at 74-damned-close-to-75, evident I’m still good to go. And they call me or email me often. They even wanted me to give platelets, but there’s only one location in the state to do that and no way in hell am I driving to a location I’ve never been to in Manchester which I know not at all. (The two times I’ve been somewhere in our state’s largest city, someone else was driving.)

My only excuse for never donating before this year was either the time or the location was inconvenient. But I’m more or less retired now and the location in February was literally just around the corner from me in Nottingham. I’d made an appointment to donate again (in Nottingham) a few weeks ago, but I woke up with a raging headache and felt like dogshit. The next time in Nottingham will be when I’m out of town but I intended to check the locations near me and the dates with my calendar, but then we had that heavy wet snow dumped on us and I was without power for four days. Checked the website Sunday night and found that there was a drive in Epping the next day, but I needed to wait until morning to schedule the appointment when I was on my desktop computer. And it had to be yesterday because all the other dates for the next couple months were conflicts for me.

Maggie, I’ll take a picture of the lamp tomorrow and convey it to you via Messenger. Along with the measurement requirements for the chimney.

Linn


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Apr 24 - 09:51 PM

I'm pretty sure we're talking about different kinds of glass chimneys; mine doesn't go on a lamp, it rests on the tabletop. I put a couple of photos on the FB page.

The back yard has been mowed, but it was dark enough when I finished that I couldn't scoop the dog droppings (part of the reason I needed to mow - I couldn't find them in the tall grass). Tomorrow. It was a good workout.

Ten pounds of flour, a couple of bottles of sauces I'm not going to use, and some things from Costco given by a friend but too much to use by myself were dropped off at the donation fridge. I will think twice about donating there again, it was looking empty and forlorn today (I think that program, as laudable as it was, has run its course.) I found some cans of sardines way past their shelf dates that I'll open and put in the blender. That slurry is great to scoop into the bottom of holes where garden bedding plants are placed.

I've split the difference on the heat pumps here. One is set to cool and the other is still set to warm. Right now the temperatures outside are mild the house is comfortable so neither one has turned on for a couple of weeks.


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Subject: RE: DECLUTTER *hoards *bad habits *toxic stuff - 2024
From: Charmion's brother Andrew
Date: 17 Apr 24 - 09:05 AM

Bat Goddess, Canadian Blood Services (CBS) are very wary of liability after a "tainted blood inquiry" in the 1990s found the procedures followed by the Canadian blood system and the Red Cross wanting; in fact, the Red Cross got out of the blood bank business entirely and handed it off to the newly-established CBS.

I learned of their fear of being sued when I ran blood donor clinics at Canadian Forces Base Chatham. Besides organizing the show and drumming up donors, I also gave blood. A few weeks after what turned out to be my last donation, I received a letter from them saying that, since my donation had produced a _false_ positive result, they could no longer use my blood.

Like Charmion, I have run into the age stop, so it's moot now in my case, too.


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Mudcat time: 17 May 7:44 PM EDT

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