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Carine’s Blog

  • It's a Solid Grandpa

    Posted on Thursday, June 25, 2015

    Solid and Funny

    Our grandsons are funny.  At breakfast we somehow got to talking about the metric system and how we measure things here in USA.  Liquids/solids/liters/grams, etc..  We were comparing the bottles of hot sauces, peanut butter, and cream cheese.  Then my husband let out a very loud burp!  Aidan, age 7, said, “I think that’s a solid grandpa!”

    Later the same morning, we were taking them over to their flipside grandma's home and Dylan decided he had to check out one of the rocks in the front of the house while waiting for Steve to back the car out of the driveway.  It's a fair-sized  rock, about the size of a tricycle.  

    Have I mentioned that Dylan loves creepy crawlies?  Consider it mentioned now, if I haven't before this moment.

    I told him not to get his face there.  "Dyl, there could be a scorpion under there and you might be getting it angry.  Get away, grandpa's almost out."

    At that moment, he pulls out something.  From where I was standing I thought someone decided to stick a straw under there rather than carry the "heavy" object home and throw it in their garbage can.  Nope, was not a straw.

    Dylan found a snake skin.  He was thrilled.  Over the moon.  "Grandma, I found a real live dead snake skin!!!"  He wanted to take it with him and show the rest of the family.

    No way was that thing coming in my car!  Thankfully, grandpa felt the same way about the "find" of the day.  The snake skin was dropped and Dyl ushered into the back seat of the car.

    He was NOT happy with us.

    Aidan didn't say much.  He's more the type to love picking out new foods to cook, kitchen gadgets to try and trying to put a new spin on how to get through the heat of the summer.
    The boys also had their first swim meet this week.  Steve and I met up with Grandma Robin and her significant other John and Alex to cheer them on.  

    Did I mention the meet was at 6 p.m., in full view of the 105 degree sun?  While the boys were enjoying getting ribbons for swimming in the cool water, the five person cheer squad was sweating bullets.

    There were also several hundred kids and parents hanging around.  

    I've had decades of practice watching soccer, baseball, karate, basketball, softball, dance and choir-but this was my first outing as a swim grandparent.  Interesting.  I would've enjoyed it more from a level view in the water.
    All that said, I guess you could say that (using Aidan's logic) even though this took place in a liquid-this was a solid.

    Later in the week, Aidan was having breakfast at our local bagel joint with Sarah.  He ordered a very traditional lox and bagel.  Sarah ordered the daily special with her choice of meat, cheese and egg.  Our little foodie decided that they should switch their sandwiches when they finish their first half.  Why?  Because that way could have a breakfast version of "surf and turf".

    Technically you have to admit, he was right.

    After last week's post, Steve and I did do a bit of computer shopping.  Bought a new one.  We also had to buy a Word/office program and add it to the new one so that I could actually open up all of my articles.

    This "easy" job took Steve almost an entire day.  As you can see, it worked.  But not in the way you're probably thinking.
    Once the new one was set up, Steve took the program and re-installed it into my old computer-and it now works!  At least it works on the level of getting to get into the Word program.  The old computer still is giving me error notices on e-mails, internet usage and most other items I use every day.  Plus, given the new Windows 8, I can't just transfer my e-mail over to the new computer.  It doesn't have a contact, draft or sent area.

    So, for now, when I work I use the old computer and when I play-I either put forth my greatest effort in testing out my patience or I use the new one.

    Sigh.  Nothing says progress quite like a computer.

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  • Good bye Old Friend

    Posted on Wednesday, June 17, 2015


     No, I’m not kidding!

     It all started over the weekend.  I wasn’t really concerned at first-after all the internet connection can’t always work perfectly!

     Every site, every e-mail kept telling me that I was in “error“.  My screen went black a couple of times.  I re-booted, I cleared out my cookies, I sent a text to Steve.  You know, all the things that a technodweeb should do in case of emergencies.

     Steve came home and did exactly what I did, he de-fragmented it as well.  To finish up the process he went in to the control panel and backed up the whatchamacallit and re-set it to Friday when it was working just fine.

     Then he asked me to try one of my sites and my e-mail.  Well, at that moment my e-mail was okay but the site I was on told me I was still in “error“.  He looked at me and said, “see, your good to go.”

     “How do you figure that????”  

     “Because you don’t really need to go on that site anyway.”  Really?  Who made him the boss of what I like to do?

     Then Tuesday came.  I shamed myself into starting at least one of my profiles that I’ve been ignoring on my desk.

     Problem:   “This is a program that is currently unavailable to you.  Please try again OR repair program.”

     Suddenly my computer wants me to pay for my Word program.  

     I sent another text to Steve.  I’m writing this on my BlogSpot program on Tuesday.  As of this moment, he has not texted me or called me.

     He did tell me last week that I needed to stop telling him that I may be needing a new computer because this one is so old.  “How can you say it’s old?  You haven’t had it that long!”

     I pointed out that he’s had 3 laptops (okay, one was a replacement for the stolen one but you get my drift here) in the same time I’ve had this one desktop.  We got it for me two months before I was laid off from my job in October of 2008!  

     There’s no way I can be positive on the level of antiquity this is in computer life but I’m pretty sure I’m lucky I’m allowed on the internet at all.

     Whatever-just wanted you all to know.

    2 Replies
  • Summertime

    Posted on Friday, June 12, 2015

    Wow-summer is off and "running", in a manner of speaking.
    At least it's trying.
    For the first time since moving here, Steve will have Friday nights off for the summer. With that in mind, our friends and the two of us decided that since they also had the evening off-we'd pack a picnic and we'd go enjoy the "make-up" outdoor concert at the park.
    That was the plan. Linda had the fruit salad, I bought the chips and would bring the water bottles and then we'd stop at the Subway across the street from the park and get sandwiches.
    Again, that was the plan.
    Then came the gray skies, followed by drizzle. On Twitter the city said that as long as it was just a drizzle the show would go on.
    It did NOT stop at a drizzle. Linda and I agreed to give it until 5-if the rain got harder or a full-blown monsoon developed then we'd still get together but have our picnic indoors.
    At the first KA-BOOM and lightning bolt-we took to the indoor picnic idea.
    Got to their home and while the women set the table up, the guys got the subs. We laughed and enjoyed watching the rain come down harder and harder, the thunder get louder and louder and the lightning light up the wash.
    After we cleaned up we went out on the patio under the cover and joked about going in the pool-it was 90 degrees, so what harm could getting wet do?
    Then came a bolt of lightning that seemed to hit just a few feet away from the wrought iron fence. Followed by the loudest thunder we had heard all day.
    We kept on chatting and watching and joking. Their 3 dogs ran for their kennel inside.
    About 20 minutes later the rain was now coming down in torrents, the thunder was clapping the loudest any of us could remember and then came the lightning bolt that hit the iron fence and let out sparks!
    You have probably never witnessed 4 older people run in a house faster than we did!
    Our outdoor picnic was replaced by eating indoors and making fun of Taken 3. We had a good time.
    We went home around 10 and found our fur babies showing signs of anxiety.  Pepper was running around the house as low to the ground as a cat could possibly manage.  Lucky was shaking and doing that reverse sneezing thing that Chihuahuas do.

    I asked the HOA if there would be a 3rd try at doing a make-up concert?  They said no, that from this point on they were focusing on the July 4th celebration.
    If it doesn't rain.

    0 Replies
  • Getting Right Down to it, Maybe

    Posted on Friday, June 5, 2015

    Getting to it
    If someone would have to describe me the one word that would probably NOT be used is PROCRASTINATOR.
    At least it wasn't. A few months ago I admitted to have quite the case of both ennui and writer's block. While I did manage to more than amply write up stories that had a due date attached to them-I still have done nothing in the way of getting those profiles done.
    That's not true. I did do something about them. I went from having 3 to write up to having 5.
    There must be something in the air. Maybe I can blame pain management? Could be that even though the interviews have gone well and the people have been lovely, I'm tired to doing profiles? I haven't done a "real" feature on something "meaty" in a long while. Could be just the ticket to get me moving in an upward direction again.
    Today is the first day of Steve's new summer schedule and he closes. This means since there's nothing on TV but re-runs and he won't be home until after 9 tonight, this might be the day I chain myself right here to the computer table and at least get something of that pile accomplished.
    Unless Lucky has to potty or the phone rings, then what's a pet mommy supposed to do? I can't in all good conscience let my 5-1/2 pound baby go out in the yard by herself!
    Adam suggested a laptop.
    I don't like laptops. The few times I've tried to work on Steve's (I tried for 3 weeks back in CA when I had to work from a Residence Inn during the "great flood repair" in 2010) and it was a disaster. Every time I'd really get into writing something the stupid keyboard would jump all over the place and I had no idea until I'd go back to re-read what I'd written and NOTHING made sense!
    As I'm getting older I'm deciding it's not really all that bad to become more laid back. My motto has become: It is what it is
    What it appears "it" is in this case is a writer who doesn't seem to care anymore about writing.
    While in one way I want to cry about this lack of motivation-I'm also hoping that just like the idea of doing what I love went away by waking up one morning, it will return with a new found gusto the same way.
    Whatever, it is what it is...

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  • Amazing

    Posted on Friday, May 29, 2015

    Here's hoping everyone had a meaningful Memorial Day weekend.
    I wound up going with Sam and Jackson (Lucky in tow) to Orange County.  Sam was going to be in her sister's wedding, so once I was dropped off at my sister's I didn't see them until my duly noted pick up on Monday morning.

    The entire week had started off on a pretty darned shaky note.  Poor Sam and Jackson had the stomach flu that Adam had given them.  They were okay but Adam re-lapsed to the point that he had to go to the ER and have several bags of fluid and shots to "stop things".
    We were supposed to leave Thursday but put it off until we saw he was capable of at least managing re-heating his chicken and rice soup that Sam had made him.
    Leaving Friday allowed me to finish up my antibiotics for my bronchitis and sinus infection and Lucky was fortunate enough to have one more muscle relaxant left to help her endure the 8 hour drive.
    Once I arrived at my sister's I found her sick. Our parents were also down with bronchitis and colds. I didn't see them at all and stayed on the other half of whatever area my sister was in.
    After all, once back in New River I had less than 2 days to "enjoy" my cervical epidural.
    We arrived home by 5:30 on Monday. Steve didn't get home until almost 7 which actually gave me time to: empty and sort my laundry, feed the pets and even read the Sunday paper.
    Tuesday had me doing all the fun stuff that I hadn't done all weekend: laundry, the dishwasher (I had left it empty but now it was somehow full and all the dishes were NOT rinsed) and I had to go buy some produce.
    Had to be asleep fairly early Tuesday night since my check in time at the surgicenter was 7:30 a.m..
    I have to say, with all the epidurals I've endured over the years-somehow I've never had one scheduled for my actual cervical discs. I was nervous. No real need, they gave me valium and used enough lidocaine that after the first of four lines were inserted I didn't know what happened until I heard the doctor say "one more line to come out and we're done!"
    By the time I got home after we had some breakfast I was tired but feeling a lot better than when I went in!
    As I write this-my neck hasn't felt this little pain since before the first truck nearly killed me and because of that by shoulder and elbow are in a lot less pain.  I'm also feeling that pinky finger!  I'm still a bit tired from a less than stellar night of sleep and a tad nauseous, but all in all-I do hope this improvement stays and continues on an upswing!

    Thanks to a wonderful group of nurses and an even better spine surgeon along with his assistant.
    It's good to know you've finally found the right medical staff to help you through what seems to be the journey that life has brought you!  And now-Here comes Summer!!!

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  • Do Nothing 1/2 Way

    Posted on Friday, May 15, 2015

    Nothing ½ Way
    My motto has always been: Anything you do, give it 100%.
    I'm thinking Lucky and I took this a bit too seriously this past week.
    It all started about a week and a half ago. My allergies seemed to be subsiding so I stopped the daily dose of Zyrtec. At that same point, Lucky began yelping at intermittent times when touched at various points in her tiny little body.
    Both of us just kept up our routine of walking. However I did have to carry her home on a couple of our strolls. I realized that my "lack" of allergy symptoms was in my head. My eyes started tearing, my face was stuffed and hurting and the post nasal drip had made my throat sore and itchy-causing a lot of coughing.
    Lucky and I kept on ignoring the signals our bodies were sending to us. She wanted to be cuddled but not touched. I thought ignoring the obvious and re-start the allergy meds would be enough.
    Well we were WRONG. Monday morning our wonderful Dr. Young was booked but had me drop off Lucky so she could examine her between appointments to see what was up. 3 hours after I left her in the most capable of hands-our vet said that her ears and teeth weren't the problem but her feeling was that she had pulled a muscle in her back leg.
    She had been playing ball with the kids and she did play with my parents Chihuahua all week so we supposing that somewhere along the line the damage was done.
    Picked her up and was told to give her some anti-inflammatory meds for a few days. If it worked, great! If not then she'd recommend an x-ray to be sure that there wasn't something more serious going on with her hip.
    At the same time, I was almost ready to call UNCLE and take myself into Immediate Care. The coughing was doing nothing positive for my cervical bulging discs. Okay-my neck is KILLING ME! Yet, I held off another day.
    By Tuesday morning I felt like a bus had run over me (and who would know better how this would feel?). I went in to be seen. Guess what? The immediate care doctor was sick. Wound up being an okay thing. They put me into my GP's line up.
    He looked at me and told me I did have severe allergies but I also had: bronchitis and a sinus infection.
    Put me on an anti-biotic, a prescription nasal spray, told me to go back to taking the Zyrtec (something I had already done 3 days before), take sinus/cold/cough during the day and Benadryl at night, take a lot of Vitamin C, continue my constant intake of water and rest.
    Got home with my bag of relief and called the nice woman I was supposed to interview and through my coughing I re-scheduled our chat for next week.
    Lucky hasn't been quite so "lucky". Poor dear is still not doing so well. She is now on some meds because the pain brought up her tendancy to have nervous colitis. To say we're worried would be an understatement.
    At the end of it all, I realized that I lived up to my motto-never do anything ½ way.
    I need to change my motto.

    0 Replies