Living Maintenance - Maintainers Weekly Chat January 6 - January 12

01-06-2014, 06:49 AM
Be warm people wherever you are. The predictions of super cold are worrisome. (It's currently raining in the Boston area - not sure why we've been exempted from the uber cold, or if it's just temporary.)

Thinking of Dagmar out with her dogs. May you keep moving fast enough to stand down the arctic blast.

I'm in the middle of a stretch of days without external food being offered. It feels like a reprieve, LOL.

Speaking of warmth, questions for Dagmar: Do you wear snowboarders mittens or gloves? Are they fluffy thick down? Do you wear liners? I'm thinking that it's time for me to buy serious hand warmth.

01-06-2014, 07:15 AM
Bill Wintry blast is right - it's going to be minus 41 windchill tomorrow. The temps are dropping today and the wind is going to pick up. I hope my client gets back from NYC tonight OK - I'd really like to be home when all of the serious chill hits. An outside pipe burst here yesterday and I dealt with it but there are more pipes inside that apparently freeze up. No emergency contact info or names of tradesmen have been left, nor any emergency equipment if the power goes out.

I wear snowboarders gloves - they are insulated but with synthetic, rather than down. A much older version of these I think. They are an all-in-one glove, rather than liner and shell.

On incredibly cold days I wear great big fleece lined leather mittens from Mark's Work Wearhouse with thin cross country glove liners underneath. They don't carry these anymore so can't show you a link.

For driving the car I wear fleece running gloves with leather palms for anti-slip.

Now you see why I need a coat with lots of outside pockets. :lol:

Dagmar :brr: :yikes: :brr:

01-06-2014, 10:02 AM
Morning all,

The artic blast has moved to Florida as well. It's certainly not as cold as where a lot of you are and I'm not complaining, but every time it does freeze here I have to wonder at the logic that goes into building many FL homes: "It only freezes once in a while, so we shouldn't bother insulating any water pipes." We will have to drip all our taps tonight, and BF will be making the rounds to three friends' houses that are part timers tonight as well. I tried to get some chores done outside yesterday so I wouldn't have to do them today, but will need to move some plants inside tonight. Yesterday I made a big batch of (lean) ground beef and black bean chili for us to eat for dinner for the next few nights. BF has gone back to his winter job today, so his little vacation is done too. He's glad to be back at work.

I hope all my northern friends stay safe and warm, with power and without home problems, and get to work from home/keep the kids home today too.

01-06-2014, 10:11 AM
My deck and backyard. Phew! The wind is beginning to pick up and it's currently 8F. :p. I have no idea why the picture attached upside down...

01-06-2014, 10:16 AM
It's hard for me to contemplate the cold you all are experiencing what with our daytime temperatures in the low 70's. Stay warm!

Dagmar~allowing your tap to drip is usually enough to keep your pipes from freezing. Wrapping them with layers of newspaper will help too, but only if they are exposed.

01-06-2014, 10:35 AM
It's hard for me to contemplate the cold you all are experiencing what with our daytime temperatures in the low 70's. Stay warm!

Dagmar~allowing your tap to drip is usually enough to keep your pipes from freezing. Wrapping them with layers of newspaper will help too, but only if they are exposed.

I am dripping all of my client's downstairs and basement taps already. My pipes in the basement of my house are insulated with foam. I live with someone who works for a contractor so he's pretty up on all the things we need to do.

The former homeowner at our house apparently did things on the cheap or with substandard contractors. There is a leak - small - in the basement. I wondered why waterproofing the east side of the house was done several years ago. Now I know. And not a good job either. SURPRISE! Arrgghh!!!

So many lies/ommisions told when selling houses. I am not entirely not guilty in that either :o

Dagmar :brr: :yikes: :brr:

traveling michele
01-06-2014, 11:29 AM
Brrrrr.... everyone stay warm. I heard it is illegal to drive in Indiana unless it is an emergency! Jessica-- is that where you are? I forget where everyone lives!

Back to work for me today and some normalcy hopefully. Dh is back to China, older dd is back to Texas, and I have younger dd here until Sunday. Unfortunately she doesn't like "healthy" food so it is a power struggle when we have meals together. I cooked last night though and she LOVED it!!! I bought two Trader Joes cookbooks (light versions) and made a Basil Chicken with mushrooms, broccoli and whole wheat pasta. We have enough for another meal though I'm not sure I can push leftovers on her.

She made cookies last night and I told myself I didn't want any since I don't like peanut butter-- they smelled so good though-- with chocolate-- the whole house smelled. Luckily they were somewhat overdone so I will tell myself they are no good.

Just battling to get under 130 at this point. I was battling to get under 125 but that seems a distant memory now. Trying some new lunch things at work this week and will be making some more meals from my new cookbooks.

As for freezing pipes where it doesn't normally freeze. The very worst time of my life was in late 1989. I had just had my second miscarriage and it got unusually cold in Houston for many days. The pipes in our house burst and in almost all of the houses in our neighborhood and many others. The pipes were in the ceilings so all of the ceilings in the house came down-- the house was practically ruined-- all of the furniture, floors, walls, kitchen cabinets, etc. had to be replaced. We had to live with my parents (who I didn't get along with). It was a sad, dark time! So do what you need to do to keep your pipes from freezing!!!!

01-06-2014, 11:45 AM
When I went out to the gym this morning before dawn, I felt like I was in a movie, as the fog was thick with the vapors rising from the warm rain pelting the melting snow. It was 53 degrees when I drove to CT this morning in one of our periodic traffic jams: Everyone's gone back to work & school.

But I'm worried about the commute home, as the temperature is supposed to start dropping at noon and reach the teens overnight. I just want to get home before black ice starts forming. Why did I set up a 5 PM doctor appointment today? I know why, actually: My prescriptions are running out, and the doctor won't call them in without a visit.

I worked a lot on the weekend, transcribing from a video of a conference presentation, so I ought to have a peaceful re-entry, but I feel mulish and resistant to having to power up today. It was kind of nice when my colleagues were all out on holiday and not pestering me for stuff all day.

01-06-2014, 12:18 PM
It is eerily balmy in NY - 50 F this morning! The predicted low temp for tonight is 5 F. That's a pretty monstrous temperature range for this area.

I feel very fortunate that my car started and the heat stayed on and the water remained hot through the frigid period that finished off the week. Hope all in the Midwest and Ontario can stay warm.

01-06-2014, 12:31 PM
Michele, yes, that's where I am! Indianapolis and the county I live in are both under travel warnings. No driving except for emergency vehicles and people seeking shelter. Needless to say my office is closed today! :lol: Luckily we have not lost power (knock on wood). I was pretty scared last night though, since lots of areas around here did lose power and I was listening to the wind howling outside while reading city facebook updates on where they'd set up emergency shelters. I'm not sure how we'd get to shelter if we needed to though because the street we live on hasn't been plowed yet and is pretty much impassable, even for my 4-wheel-drive SUV -- that is, if the car is able to start at all. As long as the power stays on we're just staying put.

The snow blew around a lot last night so it's over two feet deep in our backyard. DH had to shovel a path for Carter to go out to pee! We tried to get Carter out with just the deck shoveled but the snow was up to his neck, and he's a big dog. Current temperature is -12, feels like -37 according to the local news website. I opened the east-facing blinds to let the sun warm the house up some, but it's moving away so I think it's time to close the blinds to keep the heat in. You can feel the cold by the windows.

Edit -- the official snow total for my city is 12", on top of the 2-4 we already had on the ground. Strangely enough the neighboring town only got 5".

01-06-2014, 03:21 PM
Hi all!

Just checking in even though I don't have much going on!

I woke up today and it was 45 degrees - DH yelled "It's summer!!" Like everyone else, the cold is moving in rapidly and the low tonight will be below zero, but, with the infamous lake effect they are calling for 5 FEET - yes you read that right - of snow in some places!!!!! Fingers crossed that it hits south of me!

Everyone out there, stay safe and warm!!!


traveling michele
01-06-2014, 04:09 PM
Has anyone successfully gotten out of a parking ticket?
I'm going to dispute mine but I don't have any real grounds for dispute.
We were parked in a lot for over 3 hours-- I paid $9 and my time expired about 10 minutes before we got back. I had a parking ticket on the car for $25. Does it pay to dispute if I don't have a real excuse?? I'm more annoyed than anything. There used to be lots of free parking in the town we were in and now they've started charging-- it's not even a big city so I thought $9 was pretty ridiculous already!

01-06-2014, 04:57 PM
Jen, oh boy, I was thinking about the Tug Hill Plateau when we started talking about snow accumulation measured in feet. But I know there's a point every winter when lake effect is less likely because of the bitter cold temperatures, because of the lake freezing over. Or maybe that's just folklore.

I'm not looking forward to seeing my doctor, but then again, I never am. Finally, though, I may be doing something about it. I just got a referral from the wife of a friend of mine at work, a different doctor. She left my doctor for exactly the same reasons that I don't like him. She is quite happy with her current doctor, but she's not sure he's in my network. I will have to make time to do this research and try to set up an appointment.

01-06-2014, 05:43 PM
saef, this sounds like a good lead. Give your current doctor the heave-ho (transl = shove). That man has been annoying me vicariously for ages! Interesting that your friend doesn't like him for the same reasons as you.

01-06-2014, 10:07 PM
My blood pressure is 100/70, my pinprick non-fasting blood sugar level was 85, and he wants me to lose 10 pounds, just because I was 10 pounds lower last January. He'll see me again in April.

"By then, I hope you'll have lost some of that weight."

Another friend mine told me about her wonderful female doctor two towns away. I'm definitely open to a new relationship with a primary caregiver.

01-06-2014, 10:35 PM
I just got a call from my BIL. My sister is in the hospital facing surgery tomorrow as they found a spot on her lung. Keep her in your thoughts, please.

01-06-2014, 11:29 PM
Allison, I will keep my fingers crossed.

Saef, your doctor is truly an idiot if he's telling you to lose weight with numbers like those. Does he know you exercise daily? If he's open to data, you might try showing him any of the dozen articles demonstrating that exercise is a much stronger arbiter of health than body weight (even if you were actually an "unhealthy" weight, which 150 pounds is NOT).

I'm so jealous of those of you on the west coast right now it's not even funny. -10F here tonight. UGH.

traveling michele
01-07-2014, 12:20 AM
Thinking good thoughts for your family Allison.

Your doctor is an absolute idiot Saef. Truly.

01-07-2014, 07:18 AM
I ended up going back to my sleep-over last night. Usually when I'm that tired, frustrated, and anxious (about the next day's weather) I eat. Sometimes it's good to be in a house with no snack food - I resisted the temptation to stop at a grocery and had 1/2 c. low fat yogurt instead. The dog and I retired at 9:30.

Don't know when my client got there - probably somewhere in the wee hours of the night. Meticulous man though - he had put the recycling bins out before going to bed, after what was a long, long, frustrating day for him.

I crept out @ 5:30 this morning. Poor dog - she can't figure out what's going on. I'm going back to "walk" her at around 8:15. During the drive back from their house (5 minutes) my hands started aching from the cold.

Long day today :brr: :brr: :faint:

Oh and they've upgraded the forecast - now it's only going to be minus 38 with the windchill. Such an improvement from minus 41 :rofl:

Dagmar :brr:

01-07-2014, 07:58 AM
Sending supportive thoughts for your sister, Allison, and to you and all her family.

Wish I could email some warmth from the Boston area to the U.S. Midwest and to Canada. We're feeling the cold at about positive 15 F - just shudder to think of -38 F (even if up from -41 F).

01-07-2014, 10:36 AM
Sending good wishes to your sister, Allison.

Saef, 2014 should definitely be the year of the new doctor for you!

Dagmar, I wish I could push that cold air out of there faster. Cold is tolerable, but these winds! Brrrr!

We finally reached the end of our driveway about 4pm yesterday and I did make it in to work today. After all, somebody had to get the last of the Christmas cookies the heck out of the house! The freeway was clear and polished, which scares me more than snow-covered. Fortunately, everyone else seemed to feel the same way. The commute was slow, respectful, and fortunately uneventful. I will be very glad when the temps are up enough to let the salt work!

01-07-2014, 11:00 AM
Allison, thinking of you and your sister and family. Scary stuff.

saef, does your doctor know of your weight and eating disorder history? What a condescending way to talk to a patient. I'm sure it won't be difficult to find a better PCP.

elleohelle who posts here sometimes is coming tonight because her flight to Toronto from Montreal was cancelled. Haven't seen her since we met in Osaka in 2011!

01-07-2014, 11:02 AM
Sending supportive thoughts for your sister, Allison, and to you and all her family.

Wish I could email some warmth from the Boston area to the U.S. Midwest and to Canada. We're feeling the cold at about positive 15 F - just shudder to think of -38 F (even if up from -41 F).

Sorry Bill - I'm measuring in Celcius (not that much better) rather than Farenheit.

Dagmar :dizzy:

traveling michele
01-07-2014, 11:16 AM
Please also think good thoughts about my Jozi if you're so inclined. She has been doing so well but all of a sudden she is in pain and miserable. I think she hurt her hip or back leg. She won't eat and can't go down the few stairs to go outside. I finally got her down and put up the baby gate so she doesn't get stuck up again. She is just shaking and unhappy. I gave her pain meds but they are supposed to be given with food so her tummy will likely rebel-- I got her to take a smidge of peanut butter but nothing else. I've gone to work but dd is still home. She's asleep but I sent her a message to let me know how my baby is doing. I'm hoping I don't have to take her to the vet because it will be very hard to get 100 plus pounds of dog into the car if she can't jump.

Stay warm everyone.

01-07-2014, 11:21 AM
Michele, sorry to hear Jozi is out of sorts! Poor puppy - I hope it's something simple and quick to heal. :( Maybe you could use some plywood or something to give her a ramp if you need to take her in?

01-07-2014, 11:48 AM
I just can't fathom the cold and those wind chill temperatures. So glad I live where I do now. I do remember a few super snow storms, though. One was on Christmas eve where it started and basically never stopped. DH owned a Honda Civic Si at the time and we drove 20+ miles from our house to my sister's on Christmas morning. The roads had not been paved, so the trip took a lot longer. It continued to snow all day. When we finally got home that night we had accumulated over 3 feel of snow in the valley. I think there was over 9 feet in the mountains. Driving into our driveway (which we had shoveled that morning) and into our garage meant pushing quite a bit of snow from the driveway into the garage. But it wasn't anywhere close to as cold as what you are all experiencing.

After talking to my BIL last night, I called my brother's wife. BIL thought I should call my dad, but my SIL and I agreed not to upset his sleep and I'll call him after I hear from my BIL this morning. My brother called my sister in the hospital and got a bit more info. BIL had said a spot on her lung but my sister indicated something far worse. She hasn't been able to swallow for a few days or weeks and there appears to be a problem with her esophagus. I'm hoping it is what my mom had (ulcer from taking Fosamax) which was kind of helped by medication. I hope it's that and not cancer.

Meanwhile an update on Chico. I called to report his progress to the vet--he still has diarrhea so we put him back on Imodium (prior dosage did nothing as he was so sick). Already I'm seeing an improvement. His appetite is back and we decided to give him three more days of subcutaneous fluids as he's been losing fluid via the diarrhea. I'm hoping he isn't experiencing problems from the prednisone. The vet said to look for 'roid rage as it can happen. I'm kind of worried as he growled at one of the cats on Sunday night and this morning went ballistic with barking at the front door (I think the paper was being delivered). He usually calms down with the barking when I tell him to but he didn't this morning.

Shannon in ATL
01-07-2014, 01:13 PM
Good thoughts for everyone having hard times right now - there is so much going on with us! Family & pet illness, weather issues, medical drama with providers, financial issues and stress. I just hope that everything clears up for everyone, I'm sending out good vibes out to all.

I did my fitness assessment for my new personal training plan last night, and I am still working on the personal info. I'm having a hugely hard time with the positivity piece. I will get that done today. Here's hoping that at the end of this I will be easier able to say nice things about myself. I'm not broken or damaged and I don't need to be repaired. I just need a little polish.

01-07-2014, 01:22 PM
I just got a call from my BIL. My sister is in the hospital facing surgery tomorrow as they found a spot on her lung. Keep her in your thoughts, please.

You can be sure that she is in my prayers,

01-07-2014, 01:24 PM
I'm not broken or damaged and I don't need to be repaired. I just need a little polish.

I think we all need to remember this! Well said, Shannon!

You can be sure that she is in my prayers,

Thanks bargoo. As you are in mine.

01-07-2014, 01:26 PM
I've got my workout for the day in! I spent the morning trudging in waders over sand flats, marsh, and frozen and slushy salt water (we don't see that very often) looking for cold stunned sea turtles. We didn't find any that had washed to shore but they are probably out there (at these water temps we know stunning must be occurring). We'll look again this afternoon after the tide rises and tomorrow. I google earthed my walk and discovered it was only 2 miles. It felt a lot further! I know my legs will be sore even from that short distance. The waders are heavy.

A buddy of BF's 40th surprise birthday party is tonight at our local watering hole. I really just want to go home, walk the dog, heat up my chili leftovers and curl up under blankets. At least it starts early at 6 and since BF is also working a lot right now he doesn't want to stay more than an hour. I'm still sitting at my desk with my hat on, hoodie and thermals from my morning marsh walk. Hopefully a hot shower will revive me.

Allison, I'll keep your sister in my thoughts. Please keep us updated. What the heck is dog steroid rage? I've never heard of this and now you've got me worried. Emma had been holding her own - not getting better or worse - since Thanksgiving. Now she's sliding into worse territory again. We're doing to try another week of the antibiotics that helped her somewhat before, but the next resort is steroids and I'm sort of ready to try them if there antib's don't help a lot bc this has gone on too long and she's so skinny. I'm glad Chico is eating again.

Michele, oh no, sorry Jozi is hurt. I hope she's feeling better today.

Becky, I'm glad your roads are clear and everyone is driving safely.

Dagmar, stay warm! I'm glad your owner got home and you can return to your own home to warm up and get comfortable tonight.

Saef, I've been a member of Silver's anti-Saef's-doctor-fan club for a while. I remember your stories of encounters with this doc and thought "what an idiot" many times. I hope this new doctor is in your network.

Andrea, stay warm. Everyone else too! :brr:

01-07-2014, 02:08 PM
What the heck is dog steroid rage?

Just like people who take too many steroids, some dogs can develop it where they suddenly snap and do something uncharacteristic. I don't think he will do anything bad (like attack a cat--I think they're too quick for him) but he said to keep my eye open. This morning as he was getting his drip there was a fly buzzing around. He snapped at it a few times (I tried to swat it it but it was too fast). Those things always bother him though.

traveling michele
01-07-2014, 03:36 PM
Just like people who take too many steroids, some dogs can develop it where they suddenly snap and do something uncharacteristic. I don't think he will do anything bad (like attack a cat--I think they're too quick for him) but he said to keep my eye open. This morning as he was getting his drip there was a fly buzzing around. He snapped at it a few times (I tried to swat it it but it was too fast). Those things always bother him though.

I don't think you need to worry! I worked for vets for 15 years and I never saw a dog with roid rage.

Glad he's feeling better.

My poor baby isn't according to dd. She is sleeping on the couch (and shaking)-- she isn't allowed on that couch (but today of course!)-- Dewey apparently ran upstairs and barked at dd to wake her up to tell her all about the happenings downstairs.

01-07-2014, 03:41 PM
My poor baby isn't according to dd. She is sleeping on the couch (and shaking)-- she isn't allowed on that couch (but today of course!)-- Dewey apparently ran upstairs and barked at dd to wake her up to tell her all about the happenings downstairs.

Oh, I'm sorry!

01-07-2014, 04:32 PM
I cannot believe how bad we are getting lake effect snow here. Work FINALLY let us out about 1:20 PM today - it is - BY FAR - the most scared I have ever been driving home. At one point I literally could see nothing but white, and I almost started to cry because I couldn't stop but had no idea if I was even on the road.

They have pulled plows off the road, they have opened shelters for stranded motorists, it is insane here.

This is what it looks like out my door and we are actually well north of the worst stuff.

And it's 7 degrees out - wind chill makes it well below that...

Allison and Michelle, I am thinking about your poor babies. Allison, I had a dog on steroids, and he didn't get the rage but acted extremely weird - almost senile (and he was very young) and wouldn't listen to commands - looked right at me and defied what I had told him. Something to watch for. As soon as he came off the steroids, he was fine.

saef - My jaw actually DROPPED when I heard what your MD said to you. What a supreme a$$hole. Time to find a new doc and let him know why you left him!!

Hope everyone is keeping warm and safe.

01-07-2014, 04:54 PM
michele, hope Jozi will be okay :(

Jen, THANK GOODNESS you got home in one piece. That sounds so scary.

traveling michele
01-07-2014, 05:43 PM
Jen-- thank goodness you made it home. I've driven in scary weather where I couldn't really see the roads but was afraid to pull over too!

Jozi isn't doing well. I'm going to have to figure out how to hoist her into the car and take her to the vet I'm afraid....

01-07-2014, 05:47 PM
When we used to visit DH's relatives in London Ontario regularly we never knew what we would be driving through. Usually on Christmas Day evening coming back it would be snowing. Once it was so bad it was like driving in a tunnel of white swirling flakes - on the highway. No visibility in any direction and no signs of what was around us. And nowhere to pull off that was open or would be of assistance. I was so scared my butt muscles were cramping up (from clenching) by the time DH got us into Toronto.

Winter is NOT fun in North America.

I got through today by doing everything very slowly and methodically. Got into a kind of rhythm prepping to get out of the car for the walks, checking that I had all my gear on properly and that the dogs were ready. Ditto getting back into the car and checking the dogs to make sure there was no bleeding from anywhere on anyone's paws, ears, noses, etc.

I am going to sleep like a stone tonite I think.

Dagmar :tired: :beach:

01-07-2014, 06:32 PM
Michele~I'm so worried for you about Jozie! I belong to a Labrador chat board and one of the members there had her Lab acting weird for a couple days (not eating, restless, etc.) and they took him into the vet where he promptly got a nosebleed. They did an x-ray and found him full of lung tumors. So sad for their family. I hope Jozie will be okay. Let us know.

Meanwhile I haven't called my Dad because I didn't want to alarm him. Now I don't know what to do.

01-07-2014, 06:42 PM
My sister just emailed me.

It is reflux esophogitis (probably from throwing up) and a hiatal hernia and they drained her left lung of a lot of fluid. She feels much better and hopes to get to go home soon.


01-07-2014, 06:59 PM
My sister just emailed me.

It is reflux esophogitis (probably from throwing up) and a hiatal hernia and they drained her left lung of a lot of fluid. She feels much better and hopes to get to go home soon.


I'm very happy for you and your sister Allison.

Dagmar :D

01-07-2014, 08:43 PM
Finally some good news!!!

Hey, for fun, take a look at how stressed out my boy Chakotay is about this weather....

traveling michele
01-07-2014, 10:53 PM
Glad your sister will be okay Allison!

Back from the vet with Jozi (and Dewey along for the ride!)

The vet thought it was her lower back that's hurting. Of course she perked up somewhat at the vet. He gave her a pain shot and pain pills. We got her to eat some rice and cottage cheese when we got home and now she's sleeping soundly. Hopefully the worst is over.

And I missed working out. First time this year. But Jozi was more important!

01-08-2014, 10:54 AM
Allison, glad to hear your sister has a much better prognosis than thought! It's always a tossup to figure out when and who to call when events like that happen. Now you have details and good news!

Michele, I hope poor Jozi finds some quick healing! Back pain is a bear, no matter who you are.

Jen, Chakotay looks like a terribly spoiled, happy fella. :)

Dagmar, I was thinking about you out in the cold with the furry ones yesterday. Agree, winter is not fun. Some winters more so than others, and this already qualifies for "not fun" in my book. However, there is still a benchmark left to beat:

School's out AGAIN. Meaning no access to the pool, again. Our coach is sending comforting emails about being safe, and two weeks of rest not causing all that much backsliding (and for those who really push it - a welcome respite!). Still ... I want to get wet!

traveling michele
01-08-2014, 11:25 AM
Becky-- that's good that your itching to get back to the pool! Hopefully you all will be more back to normal tomorrow.

Jozi seemed a good deal better this morning and she ate breakfast. Hopefully the worst is behind us.

My dd won't be home with Jozi today as she is coming to my school to observe two classes. She is a speech pathology major but is debating changing her major to education. I chose two younger teachers for her to observe as I think she'll relate to them more than she would an old fogey like me!

01-08-2014, 12:39 PM
Jen, oh thank goodness you got home okay despite the whiteout driving conditions. When they pull the plows off the road because they might be stranded, too, it's like they're giving up & just hunkering down & waiting for it to pass. At least you're safe and warm, with your husband and the animals, and you've got access to indoor exercise equipment if you need to burn off the anxiety and nervous energy.

I'm relieved to hear that Jozie has perked up and eaten, as she and Chico are like honorary 3FC members, and I have a better picture in my mind of them than anyone's husband or wife.

I'm doing some year-end reviews in my office today and shivering, because I walked out in 9 degree temperatures wearing slide heels in my bare feet, but with a fur coat on up top. Well now of course the coat is hung up but I'm still walking around in a chilly office with exposed heels. I'm hearing it will warm up over the weekend, which feels insane, as we've gone from 50 to 7 and will be up to 40s again. Is every winter like this, but I just don't remember that it is, the way people forget the experience of pain?

01-08-2014, 01:12 PM
Jen, :fr: it looked like that for a while here the other day. Luckily we were all indoors safe and sound. I'm glad you got home okay! Today is the first day the travel warning was lifted for my county so I drove in to work. Took me twice as long as usual but I made it safely. The worst part was getting out of my own driveway -- I got stuck in the snow pile the plows had left at the end of the driveway even though DH shoveled most of it. Had to back and forth a little but popped free eventually. And this is in my Subaru which has all-wheel drive!

Michele, glad you got Jozi to the vet and I hope that she feels better with some rest.

Allison, glad your sister is okay (or will be soon)! Sending good thoughts to Chico too.

traveling michele
01-08-2014, 01:42 PM
Jessica-- one of our teachers is snowed in somewhere in Indiana and hasn't made it back yet.

Thanks all for the well wishes for Jozi. I hope she's resting quietly while I'm at work. The maids come tomorrow so I hope she doesn't get too excited to see them. I have her restricted to a small area today and I'll have to decide what she is able to handle tomorrow.

01-09-2014, 06:28 AM
The Polar Vortex (thanks Bill - I googled it), at least from Toronto, seems to be retreating back up north where it belongs.

Dagmar :brr: no more :D

01-09-2014, 09:47 AM
I too am also ready for the visiting polar air to go home. I saw -11 on the way in today and it will make me very happy not to see that again for a long time! It's supposed to get to 22-25 later; that will be most welcome.

Michele, how's Jozi doing?

Likewise, Allison - Chico is as well as can be expected?

Major stress for me - we have signed a contract for the master bath and closet remodel. First, I was stressing over the cost (of course), and then they called and said they can start in 3 weeks instead of two months. :eek: We had signed up to procure the 3 interior doors and all the needed molding because we want to keep them all common the first floor, plus we volunteered to demo the existing shower because it's been leaking for a while and will need time to dry out. After I (calmly) explained that the schedule change was going to cause an immense amount of mental anguish, they offered up a decent discount. I'm still freaking out ... money does NOT buy time! Deeeeeeep breaths.

01-09-2014, 11:05 AM
Becky There are so many people waiting for plumbers right now (did I mention I now have to replace the living room ceiling due to the improper installation of our bathroom plumbing) due to pipe problems from the extreme weather that getting yours EARLY would seem like a total bonus :yay: to me. I'm in a totally different situation of course and I don't know if you have other bathrooms to use (I do not).

Dagmar :rain: still waiting for Godot aka the plumber

traveling michele
01-09-2014, 11:06 AM
Michele, how's Jozi doing?

Deep breaths.... calm..... a nice discount sounds good.

Jozi is much better-- thanks for asking. Not 100% but she's eating and resting well.

01-09-2014, 11:19 AM
Michele~glad Jozie is feeling better. Hopefully she'll be 100% very soon.

Becky~building and remodeling here is super crazy! If someone calls for service or for what we refer to as "retail" (a new window to replace a broken one, a new shower door, etc.) I calmly explain that I'll be glad to take down their information and we'll try to fit them into the schedule in 4-6 weeks or I can offer to give them numbers to other shops. Our main work is directly through contractors and they are keeping us very busy right now. You're actually lucky to be getting the work done earlier (sorry it's causing you mental anguish, though).

Chico did something this morning that he has not done in over two months--he kissed me. It was ritual that every morning the dogs and sometimes the cats would follow me into the bathroom and as soon as I sat down Chico would lick my nose. In the evening he would get up in my lap (sort of) while I watched TV and lick my nose. Ritual. I really missed that. He still hasn't gotten in my lap during TV time, but he did to DH the other night. I take it as a sure sign he is feeling better. I was talking to the lady who owns a pet food store here and I was explaining Chico being on the saline drip and that if I need to do it more I'll order the stuff from Dr.'s Foster & Smith to save money. She said I'd save even more if I got a prescription filled at Costco! I hadn't even thought of that! It costs me $28.80 per day getting it from the vet. Costco would be around $5. I'll have to remember that.

She also said that when her cat started to age she started doing a saline drip for her as a preventive measure against kidney disease. Her cat lived to 20 years old (and she has a friend who did it as well and the cat lived to 29!).

Shannon in ATL
01-09-2014, 11:24 AM
Allison - glad your sister is doing well, and Chico, too.

01-09-2014, 07:58 PM
I spoke to my sister today. She is still in the hospital but hopes to go home tomorrow. She sounds awful but says she feels much better. Apparently she had the flu--bad. So bad that when her husband's kids came on New Year's for his birthday, she never got out of bed (afraid of infecting them--including one pregnant and one's child who is only 14 months old). She said the flu was so bad that at times she thought that if she never opened her eyes again, she'd be okay with that (I've heard of another person diagnosed with H1N1 that said sometime similar). After days of being sick she attempted to eat but could rarely get more than one bite down before vomiting...Weak and sick her DH took her either to the doctor or ER and she was admitted. The fluid drained from her lung was due to the cold/flu and not being able to cough it all up. The problem in her esophagus might have been due to prolonged vomiting. She still can't eat without feeling as if she'll throw up (or actually throwing up) but they're pumping her so full with fluids she's pretty sure she won't be able to put her pants on to go home. At the same time, we had a 30 year old in our valley die of H1N1 flu. They said it was going to be a bad year for the flu. I guess they're right.

01-09-2014, 08:24 PM
Stella had her last walk with us today. I made sure it was awesome (with a lot of help from the weather gods). She's been on the bus with me for over 9 years. Has now moved out of my service area. I am sad. :(

Bella and Bomber go next week. I will miss Bella - she's been with me for over a year - but not in the same heart wrenching way I will miss Stella. Bomber (small aggressive neurotic male dog) not so much.

Dagmar :(

01-09-2014, 08:37 PM
Alison That's as bad a flu story as I've heard. Glad your sister is beginning a recovery. And terrific to hear that Chico is well enough to kiss again.

My contribution to sanity was to watch the entire Mary Popping movie in about 20 minutes. I'd taken it from the library as part of watching the film, Saving Mr. Banks. Couldn't remember the movie at all. My advice: don't go back - it's just too sweet to watch as an adult. The speed version was the way to go. Spoiler alert: Mary Poppins leaves.

01-10-2014, 01:59 PM
Alison Spoiler alert: Mary Poppins leaves.

Noooo! Jk. Actually BF and I found the old one on TV a few weeks ago. I was surprised he tolerated watching it but he actually seemed to enjoy it. When I was 5 my sis & I knew every.single.word. Especially to all the songs. It was very nostalgic.

We are fogged in today but it's warmer, and it misted/drizzled almost nonstop for the last 24 hours. I found out that most of the cold stunned sea turtles we found earlier this week will make it and be released next week. Yesterday I witnessed a small whale stranding on the beach. The whale was in very bad shape so it was humanely euthanized. I know it's nature, but it was very sad to see it pass. It's been a strange week here. I'm making soup for dinner tonight and drinking a mug of hot tea right now. It's perfect foggy, rainy weather food. I also started the dog on her new course of antibiotics yesterday and see I'm going to have to keep pushing the vet to get this treated.

This morning I took my annual pack test to qualify for prescribed burning. It's a milestone I post about every year. 25 lb vest, 2 miles in under 30 minutes, no running allowed. I beat my best time by almost a minute, and I don't feel as sore as normal (maybe I have yoga to thank?). I actually forgot to think about how I used to carry twice that amount of weight around during the test, which I usually do. Does this mean I've accepted the new normal after 9 years? Between that and trudging around the marsh I've gotten some good workouts in at work this week.

Dagmar, sorry some of your favorite charges are leaving. Are there any new dogs on the horizon?

Alison, yes, glad your sis is doing ok and Chico too. How sweet he gave you kisses. That flu sounds terrible.

Michele, glad Jozi is feeling better too.

Becky, gl getting ready for your moved up reno. I know money doesn't buy time, but I'm sure it takes a little of the sting out of it. Was it just last winter you were vowing to make the time to get back in the pool? And now you're chomping at the bit to get there when it's closed - good for you!

Jessica, I'm glad you guys made it through the storm fine and are getting back to normal. That was a BAD one.

What are everyone's plans for the weekend? Have a good Friday all.

01-10-2014, 03:27 PM
25 lb vest, 2 miles in under 30 minutes, no running allowed.

This is more than the Roman Army had to carry in their loaded marches but I think their fast pace was slightly faster. (They had two paces, the regular and the faster.)

Great to hear that you've improved your time!

01-10-2014, 08:43 PM
"Or blow me a kiss and that's lucky, too."

I owned the LP when I was a child. Remember when children used to have albums of their favorite movies that we played over & over again? This one was on regular rotation, and it was probably a big event when it showed on the Wonderful World of Disney on Sunday evening.

The best thing about "Saving Mr. Banks" was Emma Thompson. The rest of the movie, meh. Would've been better if it stayed in the present, rather than trying to convince me that Colin Farrell can act. Shut up, Colin, and just stand there looking handsome in that black-eyed, dark-jawed Irish way.

01-10-2014, 10:11 PM
At the risk of showing more of my craziness.…

The song "Chim-Chimney" scares me. I like it but in a way that hits me very intensely and it creeps me out. Ever since I was a kid.

It's very weird.


01-11-2014, 07:40 AM
Two ponds on my basement floor this morning. Apparently the waterproofing the previous homeowner did is not up to snuff. Coupled with the leak from my bathroom into the living room and I'm surrounded by water. Good thing I'm a Pisces :lol:

I woke DH up to show him the water - we had a previous small leak confined to the bathroom and he thought it was the sink or toilet. His comment? "That sucks".

Then he went back to bed while I cleaned up what I could with a bucket and three sponges. During work today I will have to get to a store and buy a mop and wringer bucket. I'm going to be doing a lot of swabbing this winter.

Dagmar :(

01-11-2014, 10:59 AM
Dagmar, consider a wet/dry shop vac - advice from a man who's spent some time removing water from his basement.

To use it as a wet vac, you empty the contents and remove the air filter. Then suck away.

traveling michele
01-11-2014, 11:02 AM
That does suck Dagmar. I'm a Pisces too and I would be distraught with all that water.

Megan-- wow! You are strong! Way to go!

01-11-2014, 11:31 AM
Mary Poppins was one of my childhood favorites as well with a Spoonful of Sugar my favorite song. I bought the VHS tape for DD when she was little and she enjoyed it as well. It is very long, though! Seems to me that she never got through the whole movie, usually stopped somewhere in the animated part.

Dagmar~so sorry about the leaks, but I do second the vote for a shop vac. They're terribly efficient and useful for all sorts of messes you'd prefer not to use on your good vacuum.

Golfing this afternoon after grocery shopping. DH is doing the Costco run and will get two rotisserie chickens to entice Chico to eat. He was off on Thursday night and Friday morning meals but seems to be back on track today, but he certainly is not gaining any weight which makes me sad.

DD and her fiancé are finally coming today to pick up her cats. Three weeks is just too long!

01-11-2014, 08:17 PM
We have a shop vac - never occurred to me to use an electrical appliance to suck up water. :eek: I got a mop and bucket and got the water up. Then went outside and determined how the water was coming IN. We are basically dry now but the house will need some waterproofing in spring, a different downspout disconnect, and a new eavestrough slant.

Tomorrow I have to spend $300 on an extension ladder. SIGH.

Dagmar :tired:

01-11-2014, 08:40 PM
At the risk of showing more of my craziness.…

The song "Chim-Chimney" scares me. I like it but in a way that hits me very intensely and it creeps me out. Ever since I was a kid.

It's very weird.

Well, it should, Jen. It is a wistful song, but as an aficionado of the 19th century, I can tell you that it ought to be even sadder, as "Mary Poppins" is a whitewash job on the late Victorian period. Chimney sweeps were basically child labor, mostly six-year-old orphans whom their masters took from a workhouse, and most of them died young from cancer, from breathing in coal dust and creosote fumes. Take that, twinkly-eyed Dick Van Dyke.

I just saw "Nebraska" today. A low-key, affectionately satirical little black & white gem. Glad I got out this afternoon in the all-day rain to the theater.

01-12-2014, 10:53 AM
Dagmar, argh about the water. Home ownership - such a joy. :rolleyes: We are taking our leaking shower offline, I think today - and will soon find out where the long-term leak(s?) originated.

I'm over my stress about the remodel moving up. DH and I have leapt off the cliff hand-in-hand, with the attitude of "well, it's just money - we'll make more". This project has waited wayyyyy too long to be done, and maybe it's a good thing that we have been forced to wrap it up. It will make living here much more pleasant. The doors and moldings are ordered and today I will start on the clearing/removal of all the stuff stored in the old sauna that's going to become part of our new closet. If I get as far as pulling out the bench, I will call that a very good day.