Tag Archives: challenges

I Prevailed!

Pond 5

I think I told you yesterday that we tried to get our flower planters/tomato planters watering system going and failed. My husband was able to change the batteries in one of the timers, but he gave up on programming it. This is one of the many things he has always been good at doing – making me feel inept – but now “I” am the go-to technical person. YEAH.

I tried to do it yesterday, but it didn’t run. I decided to see if I could find the paperwork and try again today. This morning I went out and started from scratch, completely resetting both timers to run 15 minutes apart. I set my alarm so I wouldn’t forget to check to see if they actually ran this time.

I’ve just come back in and I prevailed! I had time to go around to all the planters – including the tomato planters – and make sure all were getting water. I tweaked the amounts, since we had shut things off tightly for the winter and there was still a lot of air in the lines. Once I finished that, I cam around the front and the 2nd system was working!

I think I have most going fine. We’ll check for any breaks in the lines and keep tweaking how much water each of the planters is getting, but the main system seems to be going fine. I’m really relieved. Can you see me grinning?


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Filed under Cause for Celebration, Challenges, Patting Myself on the Head - Gold Stars

Stuffing My Face

ebaums world

I did well on eating yesterday, plus getting lots of exercise doing 7 total loads of laundry, cleaning up the sheets I used protecting plants from the hail storm, folding them and putting them away for next time. I did the 7th load because my husband had trouble with the bacon cheeseburger I brought him from Lunch Bunch, dumping it on his robe. I finally went to sleep after getting that in the dryer, about 1:30 or so this morning. The problem is that when my husband went to bed, I was ravenous, eating everything except the fridge.

It’s been a bit stressful around here. My husband hurt his back about a week ago. He was pulling on something in the shop and heard a ‘pop’ in his back. He wouldn’t let me take him to a doctor. He’s been using the heat pad (won’t switch off with ice), and taking Tylenol.

After about half an hour of my massage therapist’s expertise Thursday, he spent the first day since he hurt himself pain-free. He is still better than he was, but is having trouble when he has to change position. she said he should get x-rays and probably go to a chiropractor. (Of course, that went in one ear and out the other.)

Last night he came downstairs about 2 a.m. and went to sleep in his chair. About 4 a.m. for some reason his recliner went over backwards, dumping him on the floor. His feet knocked his tray table over. He managed to get the chair back upright and slept the rest of the night.

This morning I picked up the tray table and put it back together again, retrieved all the stuff that fell off of it, etc. Thankfully, the glass that was on the rug was plastic, and was empty at the time everything dumped. He seems to be doing fine right now, but I’m checking on him on a regular basis.

Until we can get his pain and movement under better control, I’m afraid I’m destined to look like the sweet critter at the top of this post. I’ll try again today, and hopefully won’t be still doing laundry at 1 a.m. and will be upstairs with my husband – both of us resting quietly tonight.

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Life Status:


Can you hear me gnashing my teeth from where you are?

It’s still morning and I may be completely bald by the end of the day from tearing my hair out, or hoarse from going outside to yell.

You know my husband ‘pulled on something’ in the shop and heard a ‘pop’ hurting his back. You know he refuses to go to the doctor. I told you in my first post that he INSISTED he accompany me to Walmart yesterday. He ALSO insisted that we stop at the Sonic for a large banana milkshake, though he is a Type II diabetic. (He denies this, saying he has a ‘sugar problem.’)

So – we tested blood sugar and blood pressure this morning as we do twice a week. He was shocked that his blood sugar was 185. He was piously telling me he didn’t eat a ‘sugar ball’ (an apple tart) for TWO days. I pointed out that he had a large banana shake yesterday, and he then had to admit that THAT wasn’t a smart thing to do.

I started gathering trash and had to tell him “NO” firmly when he started to get up to help, pointing out that he was having pain when he walked, got up, or sat down this morning and should be resting all day. He grudgingly said, ‘okay.’

We’ll probably have the same or worse ‘discussion’ later this morning when it’s time to take the trash down. I’m going to try to sneak out and get it done while he’s taking a nap in his chair. I already have the bags of trash in the back of the truck.

This is the same man who was explaining details neglected in the ’60 Minutes’ two segments on Artificial Intelligence last night…

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Feeling Creaky

Herdaroff’s World

Yesterday we loaded the back of the truck with metal trash plus regular trash. We left the regular trash in the can and left it ready for emptying today, then drove to the recyling place and left the metal trash. We got a flat of spinach plants and a flat of head lettuce plants on the way home. I planted those before lunch. After lunch we changed our snow tires for regular tires on the truck.

I was stiff and sore by the middle of the evening. I SHOULD have done yoga to try to stretch things out, but I was exhausted and just didn’t. I’m paying the price this morning, feeling as if I were run over by a truck.

Thankfully, we don’t have any big errands today. We’ll get our mail, maybe hit the local grocery, and tether the emptied trash can to the pole toward the bottom of the driveway on the way home.


We’re due for severe weather this afternoon, tonight, and tomorrow morning. I have all my appendages crossed, in spite of the creakiness, hoping we come through the storms intact.

Meanwhile, I’m glugging coffee, trying to wake up.

Happy Tuesday?

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Sunday 4-2-2023

I’m trying to ‘gird my loins’ to help my husband change the tires on our truck today. We need to get the snow tires off and the regular tires on, aired up, etc.

When we first bought our truck, we bought an extra set of wheels so that we could have snow tires mounted on them. We store them in the back of the shop, along with the lug nuts that go with them, so that we are able to change to snow tires reasonably quickly, if needed.

This was in 2006, so that was awhile back when we weren’t as older-than-dirt as we are now, and at our mature age, 17 years makes a big difference.

I tried to convince my husband that I could take the truck, with the regular tires and lug nuts in the back, to the tire place and get this done tomorrow. I discovered that this is apparently now a thing of pride – that we are independent, capable, and NOT older than dirt – despite appearances.

So, we will try to get this done today.

Wish us luck?

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A Small Pat on the Head


I made it through the day yesterday without stuffing my face the way I have been. I’ll try to do it again today.

Another arrow in my quiver – I’m NOT going to loosen the fastening on my jeans to make myself more comfortable during the day. I’m going to keep them fastened, reminding myself that my overeating has CAUSED this discomfort, and that acting ‘maturely’ might relieve that if I keep it up.

I’m in this fight by myself, since my husband insisted we stock up on a bunch of assorted chips. Maybe a bit of frustration and anger will help me in my goal…

Each person makes a decision – or a series of them – when he or she wants to change, in the effort to STOP a bad habit or START a good one. I’m trying to look at all the excuses for what they are – smoke.

TODAY I will eat healthy meals and try not to eat anything in-between. I will drink a bottle of water if I get hungry, and I will do a good session of yoga this afternoon. Maybe I can earn another small pat. :0)


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Filed under Challenges, Changes, character-building exercises, DIET!

Role Reversal


Wow. Are we in trouble in the Lewis household.

I’ve told you before that my husband, computer analyst and general figure-everything-out-and-fix-it-person, had a couple of strokes in the past couple of years. This has resulted in some interesting situations.

I’m the original use-it-but-don’t-understand-how-it-works person. I’m fine as long as something works. When it is throwing a fit, spewing water, smoking, or is simply on strike, I have no patience. My eyes glaze over and what few brain cells I had leave.

The touching/interesting situation this morning was that my husband came into the office and told me that he had moved the laundry load from the washer to the dryer and had loaded the washer again, but couldn’t get it to start.

“Touching ” because I really appreciate his recent efforts to pitch in and help me do things around the house. “Interesting” because I have shown him how to start the washer 5 or 6 times now and he really has trouble grasping it. Add “grateful” because he isn’t angry about it, just quietly came and asked for help. Add “melting” because he’s my favorite man in the world and I’m still trying to adjust to our role reversal.

I showed him, talking him through it, having him push the buttons as we decided which ones to push, and had him wait with me as the machine changed from ‘add garment’ to the ‘lock’ icon which shows you’re in business.

I then hugged him and thanked him for his help.

This is the same man who gave up on trying to explain “quantum computing” to me after we heard a news item on TV last night…


Filed under Challenges, love

New Phones, New Challenges

iPhone 13 SE

We’ve been out since all afternoon running errands. The biggest thing we did was to iPhone 13 SEs. My husband wanted to go in and check it out because of an ad he saw on his computer. Usually we don’t qualify for one reason or another, and it was the same this time. The offer was for people on cell phone plans who basically had iphone 8’s or newer. We didn’t qualify because we’re on a cell phone plan as the basic house phone which has several stations all over the house.

We priced just getting new phones rather since we didn’t qualify for the trade-in’s or special deals and it was only a dollar or two more per month than the ‘deal.’ The biggest cost was the sales tax today plus the ‘upgrade fee’ for any changes on your plan. We decided to bite the bullet and get the new phones.

The lady who helped us was really nice and very patient with us. She got us the best deal she could, upgraded the new phone that needed it, transferred our data, etc.

My husband has been fuming for half an hour or so that ‘someone’ was talking to him through the phone and wouldn’t stop. It was some kind of verification message. Instead of listening to it, he just wanted it to stop. We played with all the settings having to do with sounds, notifications, etc., thought we had it turned off and then she would start talking again. He finally listened and found out the lady wanted him to verify that he wanted a Google for business or not. He couldn’t find the keypad, so I helped him with that. He hit “one” for “NO! NO! A THOUSAND TIMES NO!” and she miraculously stopped. HOORAY!!!!!

We didn’t get any paperwork with the phone, so will go online and see what general things we can find. The one thing I tried to look up talked about a button on the left side of the phone that you moved the switch so the orange showed. I couldn’t find any button like that, so gave up. I’ll study my phone more later.

My technical ineptness is rearing its ugly head again. If all else fails this evening, we’ll go back to the nice lady and see if she can get our phones to be on vibration and silent mode.

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March 8, 2023 · 9:56 am

Nice Thursday

My husband is working on all of our computers, trying to get them to “see” each other, share files, etc. This is causing daily changes to my computer and is quite a challenge for me, since I’m am almost a technophobe.

Today the type on this page is humongous, rather than the almost-too-small-to-work-with type I’ve been working with. I have no clue how to change it. Also, the way I find and save and use images here is completely different. When I ask my husband about it, he says he hasn’t done anything to change those.

So the sweet gif I found of a cat massaging a dog’s head that I wanted to use for this post to talk about the massage I’m getting this morning is saved somewhere not to be found. I thought maybe it was because it was a gif rather than a jpg extension, so tried to save a jpg. That didn’t work, either. My images aren’t all showing in the list and aren’t in alphabetical order, so trying to use anything is a real challenge.

He will be working on my computer again today, so I’m hoping things will eventually straighten out. I may also end up bald from tearing my hair out…

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Day 3 in my husband’s fight to get the shop computer up and running again. He’s trying to get the operating system updates onto the computer. This takes a long time and THEN announces the failure of the attempt. More than frustrating. We’re compromising now, with some time for me on my computer first thing, then my computer and the TV are unusable until late after dinner. Since I’m totally spoiled, I’m having withdrawal symptoms.

I’m reading, doing some cleaning, some cooking, and I spent time in my art room yesterday for the first time in a long time. I’ve started work on an idea up there with some cleaning up and putting away in there, too.

It FINALLY stopped raining! The sun is out today – a hugely welcome sight. I’m planning to take at least one walk in the yard today. We’re supposed to get more rain/wintry mix tomorrow, but we’ll deal with that THEN. It might mess up Lunch Bunch. :0(

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Filed under Attitude, Challenges

Frustration on a Rainy Wednesday

Rice on Your Head

My husband is still in a death struggle with the shop computer. I thought there was a TV problem, and then an Internet problem, yesterday. I finally found out after dinner that it was a HUSBAND problem. HE had made it so the TV didn’t work and my computer didn’t work so that he could hopefully increase the download speed for stuff he was trying to get on the shop computer. Communication is one of the things that has suffered since his strokes.

ANYWAY, we talked about it and agreed that I would have at least a short time at the computer today before he turned everything else off again for the day. Hopefully he will get all the stuff he needs on the shop computer today and he can continue to tweak it however he wants and I can get back to normal.

It’s rainy again today, so I won’t be spending much time outside. Amber came up to greet me this morning while I was making the bed. I pet her and she was SOAKED. I got a towel and dried her off the best I could before coming downstairs. She really doesn’t seem to mind. Her hair is thick enough she might not even realize how wet she is! She greeted me with a huge smile, so I guess HER morning is off to a fun start.

I hope that your day is a good one. Once I do a couple more posts, I’ll watch for you again tomorrow.

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Sad Anniversary Today 2-5-2023

Jade Wheaton Lewis

A SHORT HISTORY: We married in 1969. Between then and 1977, we lost three babies to miscarriages. (Rh Factor) In 1978 we had our son. In ’79, we lost another baby to miscarriage. In ’80 we had our daughter and our family was complete. Two months later, on February 5,1981, we lost our daughter, Jade, to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).

“Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is the unexplained death, usually during sleep, of a seemingly healthy baby less than a year old. SIDS is sometimes known as crib death because the infants often die in their cribs.” The peak incidence of SIDS occurs between 1 – 4 months of age; 90% of cases occur before 6 months of age. Babies continue to be at risk for SIDS up to 12 months.”

She was “perfect,” and she was gone. Our minister said, “Jade was born, lived a little while, and then died.” I couldn’t listen to more.

The pain was so intense that we both seriously considered suicide, then decided we had to live for each other and for our son. I read everything I could find on SIDS, and discovered the experts knew very little about it – why it happens or what can be done to prevent it. The experts also told us we were lucky that our son was only 2 – that he wouldn’t understand or remember it. Soon after we lost her, he took Jade’s blanket across the room to the trash can, threw it in and said, “Broken.” So much for the experts.

Lasting effects –

  1. I still can’t hold a baby in my arms without crying, even after all this time.
  2. I worry for pregnant women or women with babies under 1 year
  3. I can’t go to a funeral without falling apart and bringing all the attention to me, so I try to show I care in different ways.

There ARE some positive effects, though –

  1. I have learned that there is a core way down deep inside that enabled me to not only survive but to enjoy life again.
  2. I have looked at life differently since then, cherishing the people in my life, and all the things that are beautiful and bring me pleasure.
  3. I am much more forgiving, even though I threaten my husband from time to time of having the backhoe guy on speed dial to dig a hole for him in the back yard.
  4. Our family grew closer and stronger.

A really frustrating thing is that the experts know little more now than they did 42 years ago about SIDS. There are now baby monitors that are very helpful to parents. The experts now suggest that babies sleep on their backs. I haven’t found anything more about the shots that babies get at two months. I will never forget, though, that our pediatrician came out to the house when he heard we had lost her, and cried with us.

I hope that one day I will see Jade again, finding that her spirit is healthy and happy; and that one day the mystery of SIDS is solved.


Filed under Challenges, Changes, Family, love


Yahoo Movies UK

We are done, in more ways than one. I’m doing puns and poems this morning because I don’t have any energy to do much else after our work yesterday.

We spent an hour in the driveway, chainsawing and hauling, before lunch, rested a bit, and then did another three hours after lunch before finally clearing enough that we could drive up and down the driveway again. It looks a bit like a war zone, but it’s workable. We’ll try to neaten things up some other time, but today we’re resting. We left one larger branch simply moving the end of it to the side of the driveway. The break is up too high for us to get to it, and the blade in the chainsaw desperately needs replacing now.

We’ll do that, buy more night lights, and replenish groceries later today.

The ‘Determined-Man/Energizer-Bunny’ syndrome enveloped my husband yesterday afternoon, and he was determined to finish. We did, but he was almost unable to get into the truck to ride back up. I went up and down the driveway four times yesterday afternoon (650+ feet up the STEEP driveway) until I had to sit on a boulder beside the driveway and gasp for breath awhile before continuing. The power cords wouldn’t reach, so I had to make the last trip up and down again. Even with FOUR 100-foot cords strung together, it was barely enough. (We used an outdoor plug at the top to do all we could from the top down, then switched to an outdoor plug at the bottom to work our way up.)

We did a quick and dirty job of it, since the chainsaw blade was trying to give up, but we did it. I talked to my husband again about the fact that we are getting older and need to modify our activities more to deal with that. He agreed, but I don’t trust the agreement to last the next time…

He is taking a much-needed nap now, and we are determinedly putting nothing on the agenda today.

The really encouraging news is that we’re due for possible ice storms next week….

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“Music” of the Chain-Saw

Kooy Brothers

My husband went outside around 3pm yesterday, immediately went to get the chainsaw and 100 foot cord. I talked to him about calling tree people to clear the driveway, but he wasn’t having any. I told him I thought this might be too much for us. He said, “Go on inside. I can handle this.” Yeah. Right.

We ended up doing three sessions – a total of 2 hours – stopping when it started to get dark. He chainsawed and I tugged, hauled, rolled, or picked up and tossed what he cut. We cleared about 1/4 of the driveway, more or less. We’ll do more today – and tomorrow – and – until we finally make it to the bottom of the driveway. It’s still pretty snow-packed, being long, steep, and on the north side of our property. It will be the last snow to melt.

Amber, our 95-pound yellow lab, had a GREAT time while we were outside. She thought it was the BEST game. She ran around, leaping and laughing, cavorting around like a crazed thing, making circles around the whole area. When we came in, she hit her bed, only rousing when it was time for dinner.

Thankfully, the most important reason to get to the bottom of the driveway – other than the fact that if we had an emergency, we couldn’t get OUT and no one else could get UP the driveway – is that we have 4 days of mail in the mailbox. We also have some good chances for ice and snow again in the coming week, so it would be NICE if we could get out and get some supplies before Mother Nature socks us in again.

Here’s hoping we can get some good sessions today.

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Making a Bit of Headway

  1. My husband suggested that we might leave our 96-gallon trash can toward the bottom of the driveway, putting our bags of trash in the back of the truck as we have always done and putting them into the can and wheeling the can down to the street before pickup each week. Right before lunch we drove down to get the can. We wheeled it up to ‘behind the robot’ and I used a LONG bungie cord to secure it to the welded edge of a pole so it shouldn’t blow away in the gusty winds we sometimes have.
  2. Since we’ve had some washing rains lately, my husband put a flat-bottomed shovel in the back of the truck so we could move some of the gravel ‘chat’ off the street and back onto the driveway. We discovered that a little of THAT activity goes a long, long way. We took turns, and it was really hard going, using the shovel to break up the chat and then move it onto the driveway. We lasted about half an hour before pooping out. This will take SEVERAL sessions when the weather is cooperative to complete.
  3. We inadvertently paid Hot Rod Magazine twice answering renewal notices. Last month we got TWO copies of the same magazine. I asked my husband to see what he could do. I discovered today, when we got yet another notice that our subscription was about to end, that he had done nothing. Thankfully, he still had the two magazines. I got online and contacted their customer service people via the ‘leave a message’ thingie on their website. I gave all the info on the two subscriptions, as them to merge the two into one so he got only one copy each month, email him with a new subscription expiration date, and STOP sending us more notices to pay our bill. I thought it might be like throwing a bottle in the ocean, but he just told me he got an email from them saying they are ‘looking into it!’ Hooray!

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Practical Psychology

I think I’ve finally done it. Oddly enough, I’m convinced I’ve done it because I HAVEN’T been able to exercise lately and I am thinking about it and MISSING it. YES! You read that right. I AM!

In my former life, The fact that I’ve not been able to continue my ‘however-many-days-in-a-row’ streak and continue putting starts on my calendar would have caused me to give it up. My current feelings are more mature (yeah, I know – hard to believe), but I’m simply looking forward to feeling good enough to be able to do a session of yoga. Each day I’ve been closer, and this afternoon might be the time I can do it again. And also, hopefully, when I’m able to do that, I’d like to start with my alternating warm-up and weights videos one day and elliptical trainer the next again.

I’m writing this day down on my calendar because it’s hard to believe that I’m not having an out-of-body experience or something. It doesn’t MATTER that I haven’t been able to keep up my ‘streak.’ I won’t even keep track of it anymore. The IMPORTANT thing is that I’m doing ONE DAY AT A TIME.

ANOTHER EXAMPLE – I just received a text from Patty, Linda’s daughter. She said that Kay had called her and said she was sick and wouldn’t be at Lunch Bunch today. Patty is out of town and said that Linda wouldn’t be there, either. I told my husband that Lunch Bunch was called off for the week. He said, “We could still go to the Waffle House.” I thanked him for the offer, but told him (again) that I was really trying to eat right and that when we had a chance to do that, we should, and that I would rather just stay home today and eat our normal lunch. I managed to NOT eat anything in-between meals yesterday, had bought some dried fruit to eat if I DID eat between meals, and that I was trying to take one day at a time, eating right and doing my exercises.

It’s funny. I’m older than dirt, but am just NOW starting to act a bit more like an adult. :0) The question of how long does it take to build a habit varies a lot from person to person. The answer for ME is around 172 days – at least on exercising. The ‘habit’ of eating right is just in its infancy for me, but I won’t count.

Kris Carr On Twitter

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Filed under Attitude, Challenges, Changes, character-building exercises

A Bit of Progress This Morning

Clipart Library

My husband has been having a computer problem. As I understand it (only a relative term), he wants to delete a program on his computer and replace it with another one. The computer won’t allow him to do this. It says my husband doesn’t have ‘permission.’

He finally got on chat with Microsoft support and wanted me to type for him. (Since his strokes, he really has trouble, so this is an easy thing for me to do. The guy on chat asks a question – my husband dictates an answer – I type it. It becomes more troublesome as we go, though. My husband gets frustrated when the guy asks for something that doesn’t make sense to him. I type whatever my husband answers, and then the guy on chat gets confused. Things escalate. To say this becomes ‘stressful’ is an understatement. My contribution is to keep my mouth firmly shut and do or type what my husband says, trying to remain calm.

We got to the point where the Microsoft guy was saying the problem was beyond his scope, then my husband asked if he could help us add another user. He did that, and we thanked him.

So now my husband is wrestling with another part of the problem intensely, so I’m keeping a low profile at my computer while he mutters at his.

Now I’ll drive down to get the mail and fix us some lunch.

One step at a time…

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Is Anything Ever Simple?

Health Shots


I received a call from our local clinic awhile ago. The receptionist said they were having trouble verifying my new Humana card. She said there was a problem about my birthdate and my coverage. I called Humana to find there was an estimated 20 minute hold time. I then went on the website and found a chat option. After verifying that the information was correct, and also finding that proof of my coverage was a 20 page pdf, (arrrgh) I called the clinic back. I couldn’t get through, so left my number. (arrrgh)

They called back and I was passed from one person to another, but the lady who had called me still wasn’t available. (arrrrgh) The lady I was talking to went ahead and tried to help me. I told her what Humana had said. I told her that my birthdate hadn’t changed in almost 76 years now, and that my information on the card was correct, according to Humana. There was a number on the back of the card for any questions from the provider. The lady told me that my ID number was different. I read her what was on my card and she verified that was the number she was seeing. I told her that was the same number that was on the last statement I had received from Humana. She said they would call the number and see if they could resolve the problem.

I’ve had the same insurance for almost 11 years now. This is definitely under the categories: “nothing is ever simple” and “it’s always SOMETHING.”

End of rant.


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Vector Stock


I’ve been alternating between a warm-up video and weights exercise video one morning and a session on my elliptical trainer on the next. The sessions on the elliptical have been a character-building exercise, to say the least, because they’ve been done in silence.

My MP 3 player was ‘lost,’ then found – only to discover it was ’empty,’ having dumped all the music recorded on it into the ozone. My husband tried to fix it, but finally pronounced it ‘toast.’ I was going to try to find another one on the net.

We went to Lunch Bunch yesterday, and Patty told me about Pandora – that it was free to use on my phone. I downloaded that when we got home, but the only earbuds I have are too large and hurt my ears. I ordered a cheap, but compatible pair that I should receive soon.

Meanwhile, my husband found another MP3 player on one of the high shelves in the office! Apparently, years ago when we ordered the one I’ve been using, we ordered TWO. It was still sitting there, ready to be used, except the black fabric-like covering on the earbuds was crumbling off. I cleaned up the earbuds while he figured out how to load music onto the player. He actually found a list of some of the songs I like on HIS computer and downloaded them for me!

SO –

  • I switched the earphones I had been using on the old MP3 player to my computer, so now I won’t have to wear the huge, clunky ones that fall off my head when I’m trying to do the online exercise videos.
  • I put the new MP3 player on the charger so it will be ready for me to use later this morning.
  • I will receive the new earbuds I ordered for my phone, on which I now have a Pandora account and access to lots of music when I’m out



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PBL Works


We are in celebration mode at the Lewis house.

My husband went out to the shop right before lunch and put the new part he ordered on the air compressor. It was the RIGHT part and WORKED!

He told me the compressor charged up to 120 pounds during the test he ran after he got the compressor back together.

We use the air compressor ALL the time, so this is huge for us. I use it to etch designs on glassware, plus clean yucky tools. We have several air tools, like the tool that helps us get the lug nuts off the truck tires and then put the snow tires on. We also use it to do powder coating of things we make.

It’s big – about 8 feet or so tall and about 2-1/2 feet wide. We have a really long cord that we wind up with a gravity-based (I think) wheel to draw the cord up and out of the way. There are small, compact units now that you can throw into the back of your car. This is NOT one of those, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

When the compressor failed, my husband took it apart, figured out which part had failed, took it off, brought it inside where he could try to find a replacement part on the computer. Got the part, put it on, and we’re back in business. Are you as impressed as I?

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Back to Square One


Last week I was doing well on my efforts to lose the lard. I’m back to square one this morning, having blown it by eating everything except the wall in the middle of the night last night when I couldn’t sleep.

To make a long story shorter, I’m worried about my husband. I’ve told you he has had a couple of strokes. Mostly, he has bounced back. He has trouble talking at times and I type for him, but those are the major after-effects.

Yesterday he sliced his thumb while trying to cut up an apple for us to share at lunch. I came in to start lunch and found him fumbling trying to get a band-aid. He hadn’t said anything, and still didn’t think it was anything, but he’s on blood thinners and it’s a bigger deal than it is with other people. We got him bandaged up and he seems to be okay, though his thumb is sore.

Last night I was waiting for him to come in from taking our dog, Amber, out. He was delayed for some reason, but came in, looking distressed. It turned out he had fallen in the garage while trying to get the garage door shut, get Amber inside on the leash, the light off and the inside door closed. He got distracted and felt backwards down onto the concrete. Thank goodness he didn’t break anything. He said he fell on his back and hit his head. I checked him over and couldn’t see any problems, but of course he was moving slowly. We got upstairs and I noticed he was limping. When he took off his boot, he showed me the bottom of one foot. It had an area that looked almost like a flattened blister. He had put the toe warmers I got him directly on his foot, rather than outside his sock, so the pad of his foot where his feeling is kind of numb was almost burned. We have now AGREED that he will use the warmers outside his socks, and preferably on the TOP of his toes where he has good feeling, rather than the bottom where his feeling isn’t as good as it used to be, due to his Type II diabetes.

I guess my point is that even being with him essentially 24/7, things happen. I can handle things okay during the day. I just watch him like a hawk and try to help him when he decides he’s going to tackle something. In the middle of the night, though, my defenses are down and the worry won’t let me sleep. I come downstairs and read awhile, trying to calm my mind and get sleepy. That inevitably involves stuffing my face, since my willpower is at its lowest ebb, as well.


So last week’s lost pounds are back. I’ll try to lose them again THIS week, hopefully, and then build on it NEXT week.

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It’s Friday! 12-16-2022


My computer says it’s 32, but my thermometer in the window upstairs said it was 25 when I was dressing awhile ago. BRRRRR! The high is supposed to be 45 this afternoon, so there is hope to get outside later.

I thought I would yesterday, but my plans got snafued by my husband taking on a couple of big projects. We created a fulcrum to pry up the center of some big shelves in the basement so I could move a 2×4 into place as an added support. Scary, but we did it with three tries. (This was after I was using a can of dried beans to try to pound the 2×4 in place and bashed one of my fingers. I have a black place on my fingernail and a really sore finger today. :0( )

The second project that took up much of the afternoon was that our truck has been making a noise as we put on the brake, like something was dragging. We’ve checked and checked, but haven’t been able to see anything. We backed the truck into the shop and took both back tires off. We checked, but couldn’t see anything. My husband said we could have a stone in between the wheel and the brake disc that might make a sound like that, but we didn’t find anything. We laboriously got the tires back on and drove the truck back to the garage. It DIDN’T make the noise, so maybe something fell out when we took the tires off. No more noise! (The air compressor wasn’t working the way it should, even after my husband put a new hose on it, so that may be one of his next projects.)

Today we’ll get our mail, meet our friends for Lunch Bunch, get an oil change, then hit Walmart and another grocery store on the way back home. Exciting stuff, huh!

My scales didn’t smirk as much this morning. I’ve lost a couple of pounds this week. Since MyFitnessPal.com concluded that I ‘wasn’t eating enough,’ I’m now eating a hard boiled egg as breakfast each morning and am eating 1 oz of cashews as a snack during the day. That brings my calorie count up to where they think it’s healthy and will help me lose the lard. I’m hopeful, since the scales have started to maybe take my efforts more seriously.


Today is DAY 154 on my efforts to make daily yoga stretching a habit. I’m holding the plank pose now for a count of 30 three times during my practice, so a bit of progress there.

Make this a fun day!

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Challenge for the Day 12-15-2022


My husband and I are trying to prop up some shelves we built in the basement over 35 years ago. The base of one of the supports has failed, making the whole set of shelves sag.

My first idea was to move some of the heavier stuff off the shelves while we work on them, but my husband nixed that idea. Now we have a pry bar, a length of 2×4 and some stuff to use as a fulcrum. The idea (I THINK) is to pry the set of shelves up high enough to put the 2×4 in place and then let them down again.

Again, my first reaction is to think of all the things that could go wrong in this endeavor, teeing off my husband. I DID convince him to sit, rest, and have a cup of coffee before we tackle the project again. I pointed out that the heat and air man is coming to check our system tomorrow and that he could help us, but that wounded my husband’s pride. He says, “We can do it.”


About half an hour has passed since I wrote the above. The project is finished. We managed to use the pry bar and a big pipe to work as the fulcrum, prying up the middle of the shelves high enough, in three moves, for me to move the 2×4 in place to shoulder the load of the shelves. Things are sturdy now and we are both still alive and each in one piece.

I think I’ve told you that my husband and I are basically together 24/7 these days. The fact that he was working quietly, trying to do all this by himself, shows you why I try to watch him quietly, jumping up when I see something that bothers me. I asked him what he was doing earlier. “Measuring wood” was his answer. That alerted me. Happily enough, we got the shelves supported with nothing falling on us. He is resting in his chair now, breathing heavily. I got him a cold drink and encouraged him to rest at least until lunch….

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Winning One Fight of Two

India Today

My husband and I are having our separate, but equal, frustrations today.


My husband finally won HIS fight – we got new windshield wipers for the truck. He tried, but had trouble with getting the old ones off last night. This should be a simple thing to do. You push one button and the thing comes off. No dice. He gave up, tackling it again this morning. He came into the office a few minutes ago, saying he had to DESTROY the old ones to get them off. He put the new ones on and we’re in good shape now, but he got thoroughly frustrated in trying to get the old ones off, plus got chilled working for so long in the cold garage.


MY fight is trying to file a claim on a package that wasn’t delivered. I ordered two things from Amazon. I hadn’t received them, so I got online to see if I could track the order. It was marked that it had been delivered last Wednesday. The proof of delivery said the UPS driver left it “at the mailbox.” We didn’t get an email notifying us of the delivery and we check the robot and the mailbox each time we drive down. I contacted Amazon, who told me to talk to UPS. I got online. The site wouldn’t accept our password. I tried to change the password and got a screen saying that the app for that wasn’t working now. I called and talked to a robot, who told me that claims couldn’t be taken on the phone, directing me back to the website. I’ll keep trying, but it looks like I’m screwed. :0(

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Follow-Up from Visit to the Dentist Today 12-8-2022

Little Rock Family


We had quite a trip to the dentist this morning. Since it was raining, my husband surprisingly took my suggestion of the night before and we took the truck. I breathed a sigh of relief, but it was a bit too soon. We left in time to make a stop at the UPS Store before we went to the dentist.

Twice I held my breath as my husband, who is ALWAYS in a hurry, seemed to be on his way to hitting the back of a vehicle ahead of us who was putting on his brake to stop at the light that had changed. I braced for impact, keeping my mouth firmly shut, and he finally got the truck stopped an inch or so from the vehicle in front. A second time he got mad that the car in front of us was ‘dragging his feet’ and actually started to drive into the median to get around him. THAT time I yelped. He looked pained at me, but decided not to go through with it. If he had been by himself, there is a good possibility that he might have actually done it, which is one of the many reasons we now go everywhere together.

We almost didn’t make our appointment in time because we then got stuck behind the remnants of a wreck. There were flashing lights all over the place, stalled and smashed cars, an ambulance, a tow truck, a police car, and more. We finally got past that and pulled into the dentist’s office parking lot with one minute to spare.

My cleaning was first. Soon after we got started, EMS personnel were heading to the next cubicle beyond where I was. There was a lot of activity, but the lady seemed to be all right. My cleaning and exam went well. No oral cancer. No cavities. Next appointment in six months.

The dentist came out to the lobby to visit with me while my husband was in with the hygenist. I asked if the lady was all right. He said yes. Just another example of how wonderful Dr. Wes Moore is – this lady is 96. She fell this morning. She called Dr. Moore because she says he is the only one she trusts. She was scared and wanted him to check her over. He told her to come on in. While she was there, she started complaining that she was having pain in her chest. He called the ambulance. They made sure she was stable and will take her to the hospital where she’ll be checked over thoroughly and they will see that she gets home. She has done this one other time.

One other example – I told him that I so enjoyed living under the illusion that Shannon, our lovely former hygienist, was there at the office all year long. It hit me in the face each time we came for cleanings that we had lost her – almost like the original pain we felt at the time. He said he felt the same, and that it would hit him all of a sudden from time to time. He remembered the letter I had written to his office when I learned the news. He said the people in the office cried and then he passed the letter on to Shannon’s parents to show him how much of a difference she had made in the world. A patient of his died recently in an ATV accident. He came to the funeral in Greenwood. As he wondered what he could say to his widow, she immediately said, “Frank is in heaven with Shannon, and he is flossing.”

My husband got a good report, as well. We made it home without incident.

How lucky we are that we have such stellar people taking care of us. I still am ridiculously scared to go to the dentist – not getting to sleep until after 4am this morning dreading it – but I’m grateful they are there.

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Thursday 12-8-2022

Virginia Family Dentistry


We leave in about an hour to drive to Fort Smith for our semi-annual dental cleaning. Our dentist is wonderful. His name is Wes Moore, DDS. We have gone to him for years now, and he has taken wonderful care of us. His staff is very kind, and the experts who have cleaned our teeth couldn’t have been better. So why the image above?

I’m a wuss. I DREAD going to the dentist to the point I can’t sleep the night before and my stomach is upset right now. I had braces when I was in my teens (but the ‘fix’ didn’t last – even though I wore my retainer as instructed). I didn’t have a cavity until last year. I never had to have anything done, until last year when I also had to have a painful wisdom tooth removed. I have little rational reason for my fear.

We had a dental hygienist named Shannon for years there. She remembered everything you ever said and continued the conversation 6 months later as if it had been yesterday. She was little bitty, pretty as a daffodil and a delight to see (except for her being at the dentist). Suddenly she was gone, killed in a private plane crash with her husband. She exists fondly in my mind, and I forget that we’ve lost such a beautiful person until the next time we get our teeth cleaned, when that fact has to be faced again.

Our current hygienist is a very nice lady. She is gentle as she can be and your teeth are the cleanest you can imagine when she finishes. She remembers that my mom died of oral cancer and that I’m super-anxious about that, so she does the cancer check first, rather than last, so that I can breathe a huge sigh of relief for another 6 months.

Hopefully we can laugh again about my blood pressure being high. I say ‘laugh’ because after the trip from Greenwood to Ft. Smith with my husband driving us in the Vette, my stomach is in knots, I’m nauseous, and it only gets worse as I think about getting home in one piece.

My husband is a good driver, but he still drives as if he’s 25 (picture the chase scene in your favorite movie) not altering his habits, still impatient at all the other drivers that are in his way – ‘dragging their feet.’ We have had ‘discussions’ when we are both calmer, with my suggesting that I would feel a LOT more comfortable if we 1) took the truck instead of the Vette, 2) if he would drive as if I were his little old granny, 3) etc. He thinks I’m overreacting, of course. I remember that he has had two strokes and has had a few problems since then, mainly with backing into things.

Our discussions haven’t made a difference, so I plant my feet strategically, bracing for a crash, hold onto whatever is available, try to say absolutely nothing, and close my eyes when it gets too much, being thankful if we get to where we’re going in one piece, and then back, with no tickets.

If you’re still reading, thanks. :0) If not, that’s okay, too. I’ll talk with you again later – assuming we get back all right.


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I’ve been a really ‘good girl’ lately. I gave up added salt. I’ve been eating healthy meals. I have not been eating between meals. I’ve been drinking water. I’ve been working in the yard and doing daily yoga sessions. I’ve started doing the plank pose. And are my scales impressed? THEY ARE NOT!

It’s been two weeks now, and one would THINK that the scales would at least wave a little in encouragement, but NOOOOO. Bah. Humbug.

I’m TRYING to be an adult about this, telling myself that it will take awhile for the scales to show anything. It will probably be a month or so before the measuring tape gives me any encouragement. I tell myself that changes take time, to give myself a break, to concentrate on other things. Do I listen? NOOOOO. :0(


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American Psychological Association

Yesterday I received an email saying that WordPress, my blog host, had received a complaint from an artist and that they would suspend my blog if I didn’t do certain things. At least the notice did give me the information for contacting the artist who complained and the blog posts in question.

I deleted the mentioned posts, even though the work of other artists was included on them. I got scared, due to the threatening nature of the ‘notice,’ so I then deleted all of the posts in the category.

I then emailed the artist, apologizing, saying what I had done to remedy the situation, explaining that I had included all the credit information that was given via Pinterest. I said that the purpose of my blog was to find and display the beauty in our world, the incredible creativity of artists on our planet, to offset a bit of the ugliness that was happening all around us. I apologized again, asking if there was more I could do to make things right.

I have had artists correct information two or three times in the past, and I have been happy to correct anything on the blog, sending them a URL to show the correction. I feel sad that I made an artist angry. Even with the best of intentions, you can make mistakes.

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I have had a scary couple of hours.

I tried to find out how Benjamin Hall, the Fox News reporter who was so badly injured about six months ago, was. I clicked on an article that said he had come to a Fox News meeting recently. There was a box that said, click “continue” if you wanted to see the video. I clicked on it, and then another and suddenly there was a huge box on my computer screen saying I didn’t have access to my computer and needed to call Microsoft Support with their phone number for a tech to help me. The screen said not to turn off my computer or try to reboot.

I’ve never had this happen before and it really scared me. I didn’t see anything else to do, so I called the number. I started talking to a tech and noticed it was time for lunch. I took the phone into the kitchen and told my husband what had happened and who I was talking to. He followed me back into the office and told me he wanted me to hang up. I did. He wanted me to call a support group for which he had paid to help us with problems.

We decided to eat lunch, ME try to calm down, and then I would call the other group back.

When I returned to the office, the Microsoft screens were gone from my computer screens and all looked normal. I rebooted, and then talked to my husband again. He still wanted me to talk to the support group he trusts. I did.

The tech cleared all of the background advertising off, and the notifications and looked around at things. He thinks everything is clear now.

I had to reboot again to make some enable some of the changes to finish from our session, but all seems to be working as usual now. I’m still not sure what happened, but my husband admitted that he has had the same type of problems before because he went to an article thinking he knew the source, but it turned out the place he clicked on had changed the spelling of the website and were malicious. I will try to be more aware in the future.

Our son has been upset with my husband for years because he insists on having a video of singing and dancing Corona Beer bottles dancing on his computer. My husband and I agree that if you can’t have ‘dancing beer bottles’ (or the equivalent) life isn’t worth living.

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Getting It Together?

House Beautiful

I just read an article saying that we had better get our act together on shipping Christmas presents this year if we want to be sure they get there on time, and the deadlines are earlier than usual. The list of deadlines and kinds of shipping is long, but suffice to say I’ll be trying to have my stuff in the mail before mid-December.

I know that ‘time passing more quickly than it used to’ is one sign of aging, but this is INSULTING!

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