Living Maintenance - Maintainers Weekly Chat December 23 - December 29

12-23-2013, 07:21 AM
We got a touch of the warmth that saef reported - I went about in a spring jacket without gloves. From being frigid beyond belief we were concerned that the trees would begin to bud.

Continue to wish Allison and Chico well. I do admit that Chico's diet appeals to me. It's not usual that I'm drawn to dog food.

Hope everyone finds a way to thread their way through the eating season. This week is the big one for me. Our Christmas dinner with the kids and their partners happens Christmas Eve - there'll be a lot of food.

12-23-2013, 09:29 AM
Good morning! Bill, we had a warmup too. Got to take the girls out for a couple walks last week but then it poured rain all weekend. Saturday MIL&FIL came and watched the girls for a few hours and DH and I went to the art museum, which was nice, even if we spent half the time worrying about the babies. ;)

Allison, hope Chico is doing okay today.

For those who didn't see it on facebook, here's a cute video ( DH took of the girls laughing at each other! Now I just need them to do it when I'm home.

12-23-2013, 10:19 AM
Good morning!

Chico ate breakfast yesterday and had a couple pieces of melon for dinner but nothing today. I don't think he'll be around much longer at this rate.

My FIL is out of the hospital and given the go-ahead for everything (work, driving, golfing, etc.) and he says he feels a LOT better. They ended up putting in three stents and they gave him a copy of the video so we can watch the procedure. I'm not too sure if I want to watch.

12-23-2013, 10:48 AM
I'd like to do my last grocery trip before Christmas this morning, but SiL hasn't given me my assignment for our potluck, yet. This may require a phone call. Or maybe I'll buy ingredients for everything that I suggested. I can always make those things for us -- cabbage salad with fennel and red pepper, cranberry applesauce, and chocolate bread pudding.

12-23-2013, 11:08 AM
Good morning! Bill, we had a warmup too. Got to take the girls out for a couple walks last week but then it poured rain all weekend. Saturday MIL&FIL came and watched the girls for a few hours and DH and I went to the art museum, which was nice, even if we spent half the time worrying about the babies. ;)

Allison, hope Chico is doing okay today.

For those who didn't see it on facebook, here's a cute video ( DH took of the girls laughing at each other! Now I just need them to do it when I'm home.

They are the cutest !!!

traveling michele
12-23-2013, 02:59 PM
Morning all. Already been to the post office, Starbucks, credit union, and grocery store. Now I'm home to wrap gifts. Why are the holidays so stressful? Major stressors yesterday which ended with dh mad at me. Long story involving airports and family. Ugh. Dh and dd fly home tomorrow. Hopefully they come home in a good frame of mind. Younger dd came home yesterday. She did not do well this semester. We're going to have to have a heart to heart before she goes back. I'm very unhappy about it but I'm hoping it will be a lesson she learns from. I'm not about to talk to dh about it until after the holidays.

12-23-2013, 03:23 PM
Hey all!

Well, we were hit by the massive ice storm. Power went out 3AM Sunday morning and was just restored about 2 hours ago. The world around us looks like a war zone. Everything is covered in ice - trees are split in half, wires are down.

The power company is trying desperately to restore power to the thousands still without it. Temps are going to be below 0 tonight.

I spent yesterday huddled in our bedroom with a propane heater - we had no power and no water. The rest of the house dipped to 50 degrees. Last night was truly one of the worst nights of my life.

I anticipate working MUCH harder then expected to get pounds off after the holidays as I spent yesterday and this morning pity eating myself into OBLIVION and having no way to work out made it worse psychologically and physically.

But I count myself lucky that we have power back - initially they were saying our location would have it on around tomorrow night at 11:30 PM.


12-23-2013, 03:37 PM
Beautiful but scary, Jen. Glad you got your power back.

DH and I were discussing our weight loss plans a little yesterday. We're thinking that once Chico goes, we'll be taking Misty on more walks (for her sake as well as our own). DH has been doing his 3x elliptical workouts pretty regularly, but he only does 20 minutes which barely make a dent in his caloric intake. I saw a photo of him from last spring and I'm pretty sure he's gained about 20 pounds since then. You can really see it in his face (as well as his belly).

Sorry about the difficulties, Michele. It's hard to have those heart to heart talks. Hope the holidays go well for your family.

12-23-2013, 04:49 PM
Hey! I truly have something to celebrate this holiday season. :xcheer:

We just went 32 hours without power of any kind - ice storm took out trees, wires, etc. all over Toronto and southern Ontario. Being urban dwellers we had no propane powered anything :eek:. A trip yesterday morning to the local Canadian Tire yielded only a big lantern and 4 cylinders of propane (which a guy handed to me out of the hoard in his cart as I started to cry in the middle of the store). :o

I was kinda afraid that Mudpie would die from the cold - hence the outburst in the store. It was 8 degrees C in the house from yesterday morning until this morning. I kept huddling with her in my new plush throw but she can't retain any kind of body heat any more due to her extreme thinness. She got really quiet last night and didn't eat this morning at 4:30 when I fed them. I think we got power back just in time (although the people in charge are warning that high winds tonite might take the wires out again).

No lights (except for the lantern), no heat, no showers, etc. during the outtage so we have been in a frenzy of domestic activity all day and have cranked the heat to get the house hot (no propane heaters of any kind available except online for January delivery - I bought two).

We were able to go to some local restaurants and warm up and eat but the food was kinda greasy and heavy :barf: and carby. My stomach started acting up at about 2:30 this morning. I am so looking forward to eating a light dinner tonite and am grateful I can cook it in my own house.

Happy Holidays everyone! Hoping I have power during the rest of the week and can come back and post.

Dagmar :dance:

12-23-2013, 05:45 PM
For those who didn't see it on facebook, here's a cute video ( DH took of the girls laughing at each other! Now I just need them to do it when I'm home.

That was just too cute! They made me chuckle. When they're teenagers and mad at each other for some silly reason, you'll need to bring that out.

12-23-2013, 05:56 PM
Oh, I sympathize with you all up further north. This sounds like one of those historic ice storms in the North Country that everyone remembers for years afterward because of the toll on the trees and on their safety. I remember one from a few years back where they were calling in utility trucks from downstate and southern New England, and still power was out for days & days.

It's been warm and rainy here, as I've said elsewhere, and I'm waiting for everything that is currently wet to freeze tomorrow nigh when temperatures drop again.

My mother ran some errands for me in the village while I worked and her van got rear-ended by someone who wasn't paying attention to the fact that she'd reached a Christmas shopping traffic jam. Fortunately there wasn't any damage but it panicked her briefly. I'm taking her out to dinner tonight in my car at one of the many Italian places around here, trying to revive my Christmas spirit, which nearly went out today as I revised a research note, dealt with analyst relations teams at two printer manufacturers, sent the usual slew of emails & responded to instant messages from people wanting stuff.

12-24-2013, 07:02 AM
Our celebration with my "family" - cousin, semi-cousin and all their family - is tonite. Still haven't heard back from the host family to see if they have power or if the whole thing is called off. They live some distance away so I don't want to drive up there this morning, since I'm designated driver tonite. I'll call my cousin's cell this morning. I would really enjoy socializing with them - DH is NOT fun at holiday time.

DH is going to work today. I'm kinda relieved as I can now play Christmas music and relax and read for a bit. That was all part of the holiday "relax and detox" plan that was derailed by the storm. I wouldn't be surprised if he comes home early though.

I'm making one run in the car this morning and then settling in for a couple of hours of laundry, reading, and a big pot of mint tea.

I'm not going to weigh myself this week until Friday. Give me a chance to unload some of the "storm" weight. I find myself not having the urge to pig out at the Christmas celebrations any more. Christmas morning will be a problem - DH always gives me really, really good chocolate and expects me to eat some at 8 a.m. or whatever time we open our gifts to each other.

I'll figure it out.

Happy Holidays to everyone! :xcheer:

Dagmar :tree:

12-24-2013, 10:23 AM
We're having our annual Christmas party at work today (but must call it an end of the year party to appease the Jehovah's Witness members on our staff). Carne asada tacos, chips and salsa, salad. Should be good.

Tonight I'll come home and make a batch of Julekake for Christmas breakfast. I had grown up thinking this was a Swedish traditional bread but recently learned it is Norwegian. Still good in any case.

My Dad actually sent me a Christmas present. A card with checks for me and DH, and one for each of the kids and a big box from Harry & David. I had a pear for breakfast this morning.

We're probably going to see The Secret Life of Walter Mitty on Christmas. I hope it's as good as the previews make it look.

12-24-2013, 12:26 PM
CherryPie99 and Mudpie: so glad you have your power back. Every time I hear the news, I fret about all the families without power this Christmas.

The cranberry applesauce is the choice for tomorrow's potluck. I'm happy because that's easy to make and turns out so pretty.

12-24-2013, 01:28 PM
Jen and Dagmar, so glad you have your power back! Now you've got me thinking that I need to get an emergency supply kit together. We've never lost power for more than an hour or two but I keep thinking esp. now that we have kids we need to have some kind of emergency kit.

12-24-2013, 02:47 PM
Jen and Dagmar, so glad you have your power back! Now you've got me thinking that I need to get an emergency supply kit together. We've never lost power for more than an hour or two but I keep thinking esp. now that we have kids we need to have some kind of emergency kit.

We have always kept candles, matches, a couple of disposable lighters, and flashlights on both levels of the house, at hand. We also always have lots of food in the pantry and flats of water around for regular use.

When i saw the state of the roads the first morning the storm was happening I sent DH to get a full tank of gas for the newer better car (Which also has snowtires). I picked up 5 small LED flashlights with batteries for $10 - they have strap handles which makes them ideal to hang from light fixtures, doorknobs, etc. so that both hands can be free. I also managed to get a battery operated radio (for use in the shower) from a convenience store, since DH and I don't have smart phones or whatever people use to access the internet without a modem. We could at least hear the news without running the car and using up the gas.

Our major, major concern was heat. The house was OK for about 10 hours but the other 22 were pretty icy. The propane lantern that we bought did give of a bit of heat but not nearly enough to heat even one room. Luckily I like bedding so I had quite a few blankets, quilts, coverlets etc. under which we could all burrow. We weren't warm but we weren't freezing either and we could sleep a bit.

So yesterday I bought 2 smaller propane heaters - one for the downstairs and one for upstairs.

The canisters they use are readily available and they can be stored for up to 4 years (unlike gasoline or kerosene which start to sediment after a couple of years).

I hope I never have to use this stuff but I feel like I'm ready to endure a couple of days in the cold much better than I did this time.

I also feel a total disillusionment with the local government, both at the city and at the provincial levels. Won't go into what is a long, long story but I don't have much faith any more in the infrastructure or those who are supposed to look after it. My thinking now is DIY or die.

Dagmar :dizzy:

12-24-2013, 10:13 PM
Here we have a rule about disasters called YOYO 72. It means You're On Your Own for 72 hours after a disaster. So, you need to have that much emergency backup, e.g. stocked food and water, a way to heat food, blankets, and so on. Of course, here in Fla. the disaster would be a storm, not freezing temperatures, but the same rules apply about power outage.

Please, everyone who is using propane heaters--make sure you do not use them indoors in enclosed spaces without proper ventilation. Please read the directions that come with them. They produce carbon monoxide that can kill you without you even knowing it's happening.

12-25-2013, 08:48 AM
Merry Christmas and happy holidays and a Happy New Year to everyone!

Dagmar :tree: :ginger: :xcheer:

12-25-2013, 09:10 AM
Merry Christmas one and all!

Kids will be here about 9am to open presents and then 'breakfast' - that, by my clock, will either be brunch or lunch. It's my one time to have bacon in the year.

12-25-2013, 10:30 AM
Merry Christmas to everyone who is celebrating today!

12-25-2013, 12:28 PM
God rest ye, merry gentlemen (and ladies)

Let nothing you dismay.

Merry Christmas to all who peek into this thread.

12-25-2013, 12:53 PM
Merry Christmas and Happy New Yeqr !

12-25-2013, 01:15 PM
Wishing everyone a very happy holiday!

12-25-2013, 03:41 PM
Merry Christmas to everyone!

We lost power at 8:30 Sunday morning. No ice damage at my house. We have a nice glaze of about 1/3". Restoration estimate is about midnight Saturday. Generator going; we have heat, water, and refrigeration, plus a few kitchen outlets, but no internet. It could be a lot worse. :). I am on Mom's internet today to pay some bills and check in with 3FC. Hugs to all ... Hope to be back on before the end of the weekend!

ETA, we came home from dinner at Mom's, and we have a Christmas miracle - lights, heat, water, internet and all the trappings of First World living again!

12-26-2013, 11:08 AM
Glad you weren't without power until Saturday, Becky!

We had a nice, quiet Christmas. Brunch, opened presents, relaxed and phoned family, went to see The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (fun movie) came home and made some yummy appetizers and then fixed dinner.

All the animals (6 cats and 2 dogs) got presents and had a fun morning. Chico was so excited about his purple dinosaur. He was wagging his tail and squeaking his toy. Misty squeaked her chicken a little and then curled up next to me on the couch while we opened presents so then Chico decided to steal her toy as well. All that fun made me think he'd eat, but no. He hasn't eaten in almost 3 days. His next vet visit isn't until January 3rd and I'm sure it will be the last time he sees his oncologist.

12-26-2013, 11:37 AM
Hey! I have a dog story, even though I don't have pets. One of the nephews adopted a dog this week and she got to meet the whole family yesterday. A year old mutt from a shelter. Appears to have some terrier. The story is unknown but she was in at least two different shelters. They named her Maxine and she's quite sweet. Her ears are just like Tramp's in Lady and the Tramp.

12-26-2013, 11:37 AM
My Christmas consisted of me pretending it wasn't Christmas, honestly forgetting it was Christmas, telling myself it was Christmas, wondering what the heck Christmas means to me, and standing there in a church for a Catholic mass, thinking that churchgoing might be something restful in my life -- if only I could just pray quietly & meditate in the church without going through any liturgy or routine. What I want is a dedicated sanctuary for meditation, in which to quiet my mind. Something to note for 2014.

I've gotten into the resolution-making mindset immediately, without waiting for New Year's Day. Today I scooped up a large pile of NY Times book reviews which had been accumulating all year as I waited for the time to read them. I will never have time to read them. The bottom editions had yellowed in the sunlight. The pile was neat, but it reproached me every time I saw it. I dumped it into the recycling bin. I thought I'd feel badly afterward, but I was wrong. I feel lighter.

I have to work today but it's very quiet out there. Strangely quiet. I may have a productive day cleaning up the atrocious document dumped on me by the U.K. managing editor. It's by a German analyst and needs major restructuring and rewriting. I am intimidated by its awfulness but trying to do a section at a time, and in some places, just going sentence by sentence. There is no way a light copyedit could have made this readable or useful to clients, so I know my work is needed. But there were other jobs that I'd planned to do on these precious quiet work days ...

12-26-2013, 11:56 AM
saef~do you have a hospital near you? Often the sanctuaries in hospitals are very quiet and often unused for long periods of time. The one in the hospital that I used to work at was used daily by Loretta Young. Sometimes Dolores Hope would join her. When she died they had a memorial service for her there. Everyone at the hospital knew she came daily for prayer but no one gawked. One of my coworkers would often go up for her own prayer time during lunch. The really only time they get busy is if there is a trauma or something that brings a whole family into the hospital.

Arctic Mama
12-26-2013, 12:49 PM
Wonderful Christmas here. Time with family, didn't need to discipline the children overly much, sweet fellowship and scripture reading, way too much good food, etc etc.

Now I'm just focusing on strict dietary adherence to get over my junk food cravings and get the holiday indulgence eating back off. I'm all fired up and feeling great about it. I find rereading source material for my way of eating really helps me refocus my efforts and remember why I do what I do each day, which makes not continuing to slide around the scale and dink around with my choices that much easier.

All the rest of life is going swimmingly, so diet is my primary focus.

Arctic Mama
12-26-2013, 12:49 PM
And good recommendation about the hospital chapel, Allison. I'd have never thought of that.

12-26-2013, 02:56 PM
I agree with Allison about the hospital space. They are very good places to collect yourself and take time. And no-one stares.

Like Taryl's point about re-reading source material.

Very best wishes for the New Year, when it comes. I'm on tour so might not get back here for a bit.

12-26-2013, 11:20 PM
Back from our 5 day visit to Canada. We had a lovely time skiing at Blue Mountain on Monday the 23rd, and really enjoyed spending some quiet down time with my cousin and her DH. The weather was not great, and the Great Ice Storm Of 2013 hit while we were there - nearly 200K people lost power in Canada, and another 100K in the U.S. We nearly slept next to the fireplace one night; fortunately my cousin's power came back on just in time, around 10 pm. Makes me really appreciate central heat :>)

12-27-2013, 07:19 AM
I'm off to City Hall today (if it's open) to give them $200 (plus tax) for a commercial dogwalking permit. Somehow it feels like a Monday to me, but not a good day to step on the scale :lol3:.

We have 2 more bouts of holiday entertaining to do. Our next door neighbours are coming over for a drink :xcheer: sometime today and my younger cousin and family will be here Sunday. Sunday's menu will be a variation of paella, followed by fruit with low fat yogurt. I think everyone is a bit sick :barf: of food and eating by now.

DH commented last night that it was "time to stop being obese". He then took himself out for a walk and threw away some god-awful peanuts :eek: that his buddy had left behind on the weekend. Words, followed by action. This is a great improvement :yes: for him and I hope he really IS ready to lose some weight.

I am not going to interfere :coach: :rollpin: :lol: in any way, except to give him information when he asks.

He has referenced 3FC numerous times ie "you should ask your diet friends about etc." but I'm pretty sure he will not join up, at this point.

I am going to spend my lottery winnings to day too - $133. :woohoo: Probably on a black leather purse - if I can get one on sale.

Time to do some weights.

Dagmar :coolsnow:

12-27-2013, 11:39 AM
We've got dinner out tonight with the nephew in wine sales. He lives in Chicago but has a wider distribution than he used to, so gets to spend more time in St. Louis.

We're going to a restaurant owned by a friend of his who developed his skills in Chicago but figured out that coming home to St. Louis was going to be more fun for his own restaurant. We're more easily impressed and he can live a grander lifestyle on less money here. Should be fun!

12-27-2013, 12:58 PM
Thanks, all, for suggesting a chapel in a hospital. You probably don't remember my mentioning this, but I live just one block from a hospital, and my gym is directly across from it, and many nurses and doctors and other hospital staff work out with me in the 6 AM spin class.

I'm working from home today on another eerily quiet work day, so quiet that I've checked my connection several times to make sure that email is indeed getting through. I finished up that repair job on yesterday's document and handed it in. Today's task is completing year-end assessments on four of my direct reports. I've finished one; three more to go. I feel like a teacher writing up student evaluations. I can even feel myself dropping into that same authoritative voice. I am being stern with myself today: I want to drop off the Oracle application where I'm working on these write-ups and go surf the Web, check Facebook, browse eBay, see what the online sales are like at some major retailers. But I will feel much better if I can knock off some more evaluations by the end of the work day. I may take off 20 minutes early and walk over to the movie theater in the village -- I want to see all three of the movies featured there: "The Wolf of Wall Street," "Inside Llewyn Davis" and "Her."

12-28-2013, 11:35 AM
Supper last night was amazing. And going there with the nephew who is friends with the owner, manage, chef, and half the wait staff was quite the experience! They kept bringing food that we didn't order! We shared everything on small plates so it still didn't end up being outrageous -- as long as we don't do that too often!

12-28-2013, 11:47 AM
Oh, how nice! I got a Christmas card from your DD and Owen, Michele!

Not much going on here except one of my DD's cats figured out how to use the dog door at 3 AM! And as I tried to get him in, another got out so I had to wake DS to come help wrangle the cats. So now poor Misty is the sole animal who has to ask permission to go potty as we have to lock her dog door (she won't use Chico's door).

12-28-2013, 02:22 PM
Allison that's kind of funny about Misty not using "Chico's" door. I don't sit for any pets that have doggie doors but I imagine they would all (dogs and cats included) stampede in and out in a gang. Some are so competitive with their housemates that I'm sure they would get stuck trying to squeeze out the door together. :lol:

My only news today so far (aside from a bunch of boring filing and shredding of 2005 business records) is that I scored a really nice new duffle bag (to replace the one the :devil: cat peed on) from L.L. Bean for only $40 US with free shipping.

Now there are L.L. bean ads all over my browser - of course. What's scary is that I only looked at duffles on Sportchek and Eddie Bauer's sites and their ads are all over too.

Dagmar :coolsnow:

12-28-2013, 02:36 PM
Dagmar, Misty will use the dog door from the utility room to the garage, but not the one from the garage to the side yard. I've determined that she dislikes other dog's pee and poop. If I can get her through the people door, she is very careful just where she places her paws. Now don't get me wrong here, we clean up all the time and hose down the sand monthly and about twice a year use a couple gallons of Nature's Miracle to remove additional smell. She's just very particular!

traveling michele
12-28-2013, 03:27 PM
Oh, how nice! I got a Christmas card from your DD and Owen, Michele!

Not much going on here except one of my DD's cats figured out how to use the dog door at 3 AM! And as I tried to get him in, another got out so I had to wake DS to come help wrangle the cats. So now poor Misty is the sole animal who has to ask permission to go potty as we have to lock her dog door (she won't use Chico's door).

I'm glad you did! I didn't.:mad: she accidentally mailed mine without an address or stamp (was going to hand deliver). So I'll never see it.

Sorry but I got a chuckle from your kitties using the doggy door!

12-29-2013, 01:20 PM

Quiet in here.


12-30-2013, 03:53 PM

12-30-2013, 04:21 PM
Hello bargoo - We've wandered into next week already:

See you over there.