Wednesday, January 28, 2009

I am in Jacksonville!

I arrived at my parents' home last night at 7:30 after two and a half hours of white-knuckle driving through thick fog and black darkness. Traffic was smooth and everyone drove sanely. Mom walked out to the car and was I her surprised at how magnifint she looks!! She was dressed so sophisticated and smart looking, her eyes were bright and it was clear that she felt well and was very proud of herself, as she has gained to almost her goal weight.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Our Friend Norman

We've seen a lot of a good friend lately. Last weekend, Norman was at the local breakfast place. He goes there often enough that everyone knows his name, sees him coming, and starts his breakfast! This evening, Mark and I were headed to another of Norman's haunts, Sonny's BBQ. On our way, Mark suggested we give Norm a call, to see if he was there. I called, and he made it to the restaurant in record time! The economy must be picking up, because we've never seen this place so crowded. I placed a request for a table and was told that it would be a 45 minute wait! Instead, we chose to eat at the bar, with freezing a/c blowing down on our heads. Thanks, Norm, for trading places with me. You are a real gentleman. Dinner was good, the company, even better.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Daytona Patty

Mark and I shopped on Saturday at U.S. Toys for some posters for Patty's new classroom. We got quite a few, and so we could give them to Patty for her first day with her students (today), she and Jon drove down from Jacksonville, and Mark and I drove up from Orlando and we met in Daytona yesterday. No school on Martin Luther King holiday. We had lunch and I enjoyed a nice steak salad at Longhorn's Steakhouse together. Besides the posters, I brought along an orchid with beautiful white flowers, as well as a nice sized potted palm plant, both donations from a local nursery, for Patty's classroom. She was thrilled! It was a nice visit. I wish we lived closer.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Mt. Dora Day

Mark and I took off Sunday and enjoyed a pretty drive to Mount Dora...a funny name for a city in flat Florida, but it does have a slight hill. There were all sorts of stores there, lots of antiques and yarn shops, that sort of thing. We drove over to Eustis to the park and watched a wedding ceremony, then a little later, two strange groups of people doing what they call "drum circles". One starts drumming and the rest join in, making a bunch of banging music basically. They all had their drums and djumbe's, one woman was playing a pair of kitchen spoons. Anything that makes banging noise... They looked pretty crunchy granola. You know the type, Birkenstock shoes, scarf in hair, and some bearded long haired guys. Beatnicks!

We brought our little dog with us and she had a ball playing in the park. She met some larger dogs and leapt and frolicked with them. I'd like to take Juliet to a dog park so she could play without the restraint of a leash.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Laundry Room!

I upped my arthritis medicine and got a new rush of energy! Yay! So my laundry room is half cleared out now. Mark is going to help me with the high shelf.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Patty Got A Job

My sister Patty just got a job as a high school special education science and math teacher on Tuesday. The teaching position she had last year was eliminated due to tax cuts, so she is really lucky that there was an opening and she was hired. Patty had paperwork to do yesterday at the county office and today she got her classroom, sans the students. She just called me and told me her classroom is filthy dirty and dusty and dreary after having a sick teacher, then substitutes. Poor students! Poor Patty! She has spent the day today cleaning and organizing, figuring out what she needed to do to get her room ready for students next Tuesday. Monday is a holiday. I am going shopping now to get her some cheerful posters, anything bright and happy that will not insult a teenager. I am also going to check with the local nurseries to see if they will donate some plants. Patty is going to meet me halfway in Daytona this weekend so I can give her the goods. She doesn't have a U.S. Toys store up there and this place has amazing prices on teacher supplies.

Weekly Menu

I put a Weekly Menu in my other Blogsite, What's For Dinner?, I posted my weekly home menu. Take a look.

Laundry Room Drop Out

Everybody sing with me! She's a Laundry Room Drop Out (doo wop)... I tried to organize the laundry room yesterday, but it was just too much for my hands and wrists. I rolled out the vacuum cleaner and carpet cleaner, loaded a bunch of stuff into a laundry basket, dragged in the little ladder to empty the high shelves, but still, it was just too difficult and I can't physically do it myself. Mark promises to help me tomorrow. I'm glad for his help, but don't enjoy doing anything like this with Mark because his solution is to THROW EVERYTHING AWAY and I would rather donate things that someone else might need.

"Somebody''s Watching Me" - free download

There is a free music download for the remake of Rockwell's "Somebody's Watching Me" on the Geico Insurance site. Scroll down, right click. I chose Save Target in My Music folder in My Documents. Maybe it's from having a guitar-playing son, but I like the fuzzy sound in the remake.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Organic Produce Arrived

The nicest lady named Areesta arrived from Orlando Organics around 11AM with the big box of produce I ordered. All is all organically grown, and most from Florida. I put it all on the counter and took a picture. The items are random, I do not get to choose, except I asked for the persimmons to send to my mom. It all looks so yummy, but is this worth $50 ? Considering how difficult it is to find all organically grown (no bad pesticides) produce, and those in the grocery store are expensive, I am guessing the price is right. I'll continue to get the weekly delivery and then decide.

Back first, left to right: 32 oz. fresh squeezed orange juice, romaine lettuce, 10 carrots, collard greens, bok choy, spinach, eggs, 2 cucumbers, 3 ruby red grapefruit, 4 granny smith apples, 7 bananas, grape tomatoes, clover sprouts, 4 cara cara oranges, 4 anjou pears, a Tommy Atkins mango, 5 russett potatoes, a Hass avacado, 3 yellow onions, white button mushrooms, and 2 persimmons. Replacing the blueberries (they ran out) was the bok choy, which I've never cooked before, but found a good sounding recipe online.

Pam's Mom

I pulled the first layer of stuff out of the laundry room, vacuum cleaner, Swiffer cleaners, things I use regularly, and was just about to tackle the second layer - the old stuff - when the phone rang. My friend Pam was stuck out of town and her 82 year old mother, who recently moved to her home after spinal surgery (and a few weeks of recovery rehab), was going to be home alone. I hurried over and spent the day assembling the most difficult puzzle with Pam's mother. I would have lost my religion in frustration, but it was The Last Supper, 2000 tiny pieces. I cooked lunch and supper, and after Pam got home with her husband at 9PM, I hung out a couple of more hours visiting.

Mark put everything I pulled out of the laundry room back IN, so today I start all over again.

Oh, an interesting tidbit...the cold weather on the east coast of the US has really made things chilly. Daytona, FL actually had colder temperatures than Anchorage, Alaska early this morning!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

I love everything Swiffer

Has anyone ever tried to refill a Swiffer WetJet bottle? I tried using my undercounter jar opener, but it just scraped the lid up, but I'd rather save a few bucks and mix my own floor cleaner. I looked in, and learned this:
They don't want everyone to stop buying their cleaning solution! You can run the top of the bottle under hot water then pop the lid off.
I'll give you an update on how this works later. In that site is also gives instructions for knitting and for crocheting cotton pads to use instead of buying the disposables.

To save FOUR lousy bucks, I bought a different brand - the Clorox ReadyMop, instead of the Wetjet for my NC home. What a huge mistake! Don't do it man! I put it away with the bottle of fluid attached, and the mop-head part on the floor, and all the cleaning fluid ran out! I'll keep my eye open for coupons and Swiffer sales to replace that crummy mop.
After filling the bottle of wetjet solution with Mr. Clean, I plan to mercy dump my laundry room - totally empty out my laundry room and only keep what I really need. Oh goodie.