Closing windows

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Literally. The windows have been open for 39 hours. I’m hours away from closing them for several days. Central Texas ping pong, arctic and tropic fronts going back and forth, some dribbles, some slams, some stalls, but a constant, sitting under the net. I will miss the short sleeves.


The two gallon trash bags, four years worth, arrived today. Myka’s litter trash can (which still spooks her) is tickled. I only had to use a large produce bag once. The denim shirts are due tomorrow. The less said about the new arm rest covers the better.


More $$$ to Apple. Within budget.


Took down the mini blinds that Myka savaged. In the trash can, UV brittle, string rotted, needed removing anyway. Her obsession with the neighbor’s cat…


Otherwise, I’ve been lazy, movies, video games, downloads, etc. Eating pretty light during the warm weather. Jambalaya on the horizon with the temp drop. Had a long warm soak this afternoon. Lazy weekend, for the most part.


Truck needs attention, maybe this week, when it warms back up. I feel like I may finally be over the woes.

‘Cember

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Yesterday was payday, typical of the first. Didn’t spend any money, though. I stayed at home, opened the windows, and relaxed. I’m pretty much over the physical issue. I might make a store run this morning, but that’s not yet in ink.


There is a jam session tonight at the Pioneer. I plan on making it, first in a while. (Mid-October, I believe.) I’m ready for more brisket chili and ready to play some music. I finished off the spaghetti yesterday, so perfect timing. Pads are in good shape, and my voice should be there.


Vet appointment for Myka and dentist appointment for me need to be scheduled. That should wrap up the medical visits until April.


Got digital housekeeping done. Still installations and sorting the audio production library yet to do. I’ll get there one of these days.

Sampled

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Today, I discovered just what a series of loops it is to deliver a sample to the hospital lab. Having to check in after waiting 15 minutes, just for a drop off. The good news is that the sample was negative, no unruly polyps.


I’m almost over the urinary tract issue. It’s gone from being abject misery to a mild annoyance.


Windows are open. Myka wore herself out with a sensory extravaganza. I’m rather enjoying it too. The rest of the week through Sunday should see open windows.


Tonight is payday. I’m looking at a new 4T external drive, a vet visit, but little else. Trying to build reserves after last month.


Still working on the spaghetti and tamales. Jambalaya coming up.

Oy oy

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Been dealing with a prostate issue, seemingly brought on by a toxic party slush (jalapeño, etc) in my digestive tract, a case of chemical burn. Can’t leave the house for long, as I need to stay near the bathroom. It doesn’t take much fluid to trigger the need. It’s rather uncomfortable, but improving a bit now that most of the slush is out of my system. It’s putting a strain on my whole body, headache, fatigue, etc. Been sleeping a lot.


It rained all day yesterday, a Pacific jet dumping continuous rain for over 12 hours. It wasn’t heavy, no lightning, but it kept falling. It was in the 40s all day and night. A warming trend starts on Monday.


I managed to get in store runs Friday and Saturday mornings. They weren’t big, but they filled in the gaps. So I’m good for a while. I made spaghetti sauce on Friday, so I’m doing well in feeding the digestive tract some bland bulk. I got the replacement latch for the hood of the truck. I may replace it today, if I feel up to it.


Things are otherwise going well.

Rx impaling

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Got my flu shot today. And after drinking plenty of water, I got a retest of my blood work. Everything that was askew is now within proper limits. My doctor is happy, the prescriptions flow. That closes the door on the busy week prior.


Now I get to be lazy for a while and munch at my leisure. Tonight is gold potato/pork loin/cheddar/avocado. Tomorrow is smoked turkey/bacon/provolone sandwich. After that, sketti. (Ground chuck is in the sink thawing.) Chores are currently done. I can rest and get through the flu shot side effects and fully recover from the party. No hoops this weekend to require my jumping. Only the bread going bad before the turkey sandwich would require a store run.


Windows were just shut, and they won’t reopen for a while. A wet front is blowing through tonight, gusty winds, 1.3″ of rain forecasted. So it’s a case of serendipity that it all shuts down at once. It’s welcome, I need the rest, snuggle up and stay warm. I met the deadlines, and they’re gone. My time is my own for the rest of the month. Next month (a week away), I can pick up the effort and see the dentist and vet, get the rest of all that behind me.


I have enough gathered to keep me busy, occupied, distracted, and otherwise capable of passing time.

Post-partium

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Landed 28 hours ago, unloaded. Almost finished unpacking. Just about caught up digitally. Almost caught up on sleep.


The good news, I got home with a fully charged battery on the truck. Brakes need a little bleeding, but no leaks.


The party was a good one. I got to play on Friday and Sunday, and I sang harmonies with Alicia on the PA on Saturday. It was a good musical event for me. The percussion went over well, music I knew, not too loud, added a dimension, it was appreciated. Cabasa, bones, spoons, wood block, tambourine, and clapper. I played the Egee too, and sang with full voice. It was good musically. I came home witha foghorn voice.


Lots of notable in their absences, those whom I wish I could have seen. But the crowd had plenty of catching up, more than enough to tire out my laugh lines.


The location worked well. Ample room for camping, the barn was a good focus, and everything needed was there. Only thing missing was wifi. A good location.


And now I’m back home and glad to have the LZB2. Doctor appointment Wednesday. I didn’t overdo anything, so I think I’ll recover enough for a blood draw.


Store run tomorrow morning, I think. Not much, script, flautas, and a hood latch for the truck are the big items.

Zoom zoom

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I ran a number of diagnostics on the electrical system, and I have just about solidly confirmed that the issue is the dash voltage gauge. When cold, it reads normally, but after a few seconds, it starts dropping a few degrees. So my speculation is that something in the circuit is increasing resistance as it warms up from current flow. No matter what the gauge reads, the VOM reads a solid 15V with the engine running. $10 – $20 for a new gauge.


So the fluids have been checked, the tires topped off at 34 psi, fuel cleaner in the gas tank, batteries charged, it’s ready to roll. TRD, here I come!


Bath, laundry, pack, partially load the truck, eat, and prep the house for Myka are today’s chores. Finish loading the truck tomorrow morning, grab ice, and boogie. Easy list for 20 hours to departure. And the process has begun.


The calm before the tempest.

Truckin’

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Swapped out the alternator, after purchasing a new one to shortcut getting transportation. When I took the core back for testing, it tested good. So no refund. I checked everything electrical with a VOM, and it looked good. So I’m surmising that the dash voltage gauge is faulty, misreading due to old age. There are behavioral clues that this may be the case. But to hedge my bet, I went and got a new 1 year battery, to be on the safe side. If the battery dies on the way somewhere, I have two replacements, which should either get me there or get me back home, depending on how far the first one got me.


So I feel safe heading to TRD. Hopefully, I’ll make it there instead of turning around and heading back home. Warrenton is half way. Friday will tell the future. I may even make it the whole way, if my suspicions about the gauge hold true. THE VOM showed 12V across the battery terminals, right where it belongs. I may need to get a new voltage gauge, easy one to install. Digital would be nice.


So while it was an expensive day ($250), it didn’t break the bank, and I will be heading toward TRD without further shopping. All I need to do is gather, load the truck, grab ice, and boogie. I have a day and a half to do so.


And if and when the new alternator goes out, I will have one to swap out, and they both have lifetime warranties. No more issues with getting a ride. Same with the battery.


Today got up to 80°F. Tomorrow’s high is forecast at 66°F, same as Friday. Saturday shows 77°F and Sunday, 81°F. I shut the house early to retain the warmth. Friday night will be in the 40s, but in the low 60s Saturday night. I’ll have plenty of alpaca with me.


Washed the sheets and pillowcases in the truck. I’ll be comfy in bed, at least, and warm with the alpaca blanket.


I’ll be packing Egee, the black guitar accessory bag, the bodhran, beater bag, and a big toy bag. (Clapper, bones, spoons, cabasa, bunch of stuff.) Even if my finger tips give out, I’ll be able to bang stuff together.


4 bags of ice (16 lb), $6 for a 48 hour stay. Only boudin needs staying cool, and it’s well sealed and cold going in. The rest is for drinking and sharing. I won’t be leaving much in the fridge.


Packing light. Clothes, bedding, music, food, meds, furniture, and the standard truck package. Pretty basic, very flexible. Knock on wood.


One way or another.

Prepatorium

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This is the week of TRD prep. At least in theory. So far, it’s all been mental prep, logistics. I am packing light, minimal luggage. Boudin and Piroulines. Drinks and ice. Change of clothes. Bedding. Music. Not a big mass to gather. But I need to get the truck fit for the road.


I’m not too worried, but there are distractions and energy is low.


Finished the risotto and tuna mac. Bread and spuds are the main base now. I might thaw a pork loin section. I have plenty to last until the party, no big shopping until next week.


Myka has taken to the oat grass with more enthusiasm than I expected.

Vampire of the morning

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Had a blood draw this morning, after an 8 hour fast. The fast is always worse than the jab, because it lasts so much longer. The non-HDL cholesterol was 124 mg/dL, which is in the optimal range. Waiting for the other results. Scheduled an appointmment for the day before Thanksgiving. I should be recovered from TRD enough for that.


It was a warm day, sunny, windows open, easy breeze through the house. A delightful day. Got another bag of ice for the freezer. I need to get more ones or more quarters. Go hit up the bill changer at the car wash, if my supply starts running low.


Well, I ended up with rice (risotto) and pasta (tuna mac) in the fridge, so jambalaya and sketti are out for next in line. No idea what will follow, but I have time. I had fajita chicken tacos for dinner. Only perishable items are in the crisper.


There isn’t much in the works for the immediate future, but the next week and a half will be busy, leading up to TRD. Building steam for the task ahead. I have been managing. Chores are getting done, projects are a little slower.

Clockolalia

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It’s been 24 hours since the US shifted from DST to ST. I am one of those who feel that the sun should be at zenith during the noon hour, all the time.


I live by the sun, a child of UTC, not by the clock, so theoretically, a change in time zone shouldn’t be that big of a thing for me. But it is. Not in the classic way, by all those who live by the clock, but it warps the data stream. All UTC internet clock servers have changed time for standard events.


I discovered that my microwave lost six buttons on the control panel, and the clock set is one of the dead ones. While I dislike looking at DST being out of sync, I dread a power loss that will send me into flashing clock syndrome. Will this detail force me into buying a new microwave? Plots and schemes have flowed like wine.


I’m already considering buying a couple of 4T external drives. (75 mbps fiop is brutal.) And Myka is due a vet visit. And TRD happens in two weeks.


Blood draw and alternator swap are planned projects this week. Need to start getting ready for TRD. Long range forecast shows nights in the 40s.


Working on a menu for the week. It’s down to either risotto and spaghetti, or roasted garlic mashed potatoes and jambalaya. I don’t want to do successive rice dishes, and the milk needs to be used. Had spud/marinated pork tenderloin/cheddar/avocado for an early dinner yesterday, followed by a brief coma. Second one today. Finishing the pulled pork tonight.


Myka’s oat grass is just now sprouting, first tips emerging from the soil. The crabgrass is all but gone.


My bath pillow got placed on the wrong truck, and it made a 15 minute drive in 5 hours and 15 minutes. Hence, it won’t be a day early as posted. It’s 7 inches wider than the current one, which will become a head rest on the wall. I’m tired of cold shoulders.

Kicking back

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I got Myka’s oat grass planted, now sitting on the window sill. It’s just in time to miss the approaching rain. Also got another bag of ice for the top loader. Trash is on the curb. The kitchen is in order, everything put away. Plenty to eat in the fridge. No need for a store run. Time to kick back and relax.


I have burned quite a bit of energy since I got over the Moderna booster side effects, catching up on things. Well, I’m caught up. The todo list is down to truck and medical, nothing else. Well, maybe a little light sweeping.


Weather is cooling, a front coming in from the west. A train of storms is nearing from the west, extending into Mexico. Forecast calls for 1.5″ over the next 24 hours. Ready for it.


I need to do digital house cleaning. That is the one area where I am lagging badly. Living all those years with obsolete computers spoiled me for a lack of version maintenance. Then again, it’s the price of owning a state of the art beast. My problem is that what I’ve got installed works well enough, no real need to stay current. I have gotten most of the issues with OS 12 battened down. Default Folder, Cookie, Safari extensions, etc.


I still need to get audio processing organized. I’m still learning the hardware, but when I get done, I will probably start installing some of the library. So the need is drawing nigh.

Pulled pork, photo essay

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Start. Rub: brown sugar, sage, marjoram, basil, paprika, garlic, cayenne. Sweet yellow onion. Chicken broth, apple cider vinegar.
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9.5 lb Boston butt


6 hours in, flipped.
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Bone protruding.


11 hours in, boneless, flipped again.
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Myka approved. Another hour to go for good measure.


Looks smaller than it is.

Drained, cooling down for dividing and bagging.


Cooked on a Tuesday, trash on the curb tomorrow. To my dismay, turkeys go on sale tomorrow. *sigh*


I think I have finally gotten through the side effects from the Moderna booster.

Fridged

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Cut into 11 pieces and bagged, 1 for fridge, 10 for freezer


The pork loin was bagged, refrigerated, frozen, then bagged and transferred to the top loader. I had loin tacos from the end piece that stayed in the fridge, a late lunch. I might make eggs ackley with the rest. Might not.


I have a fairly full menu for the weekend and beyond, pork loin, sausage gravy, green chili tamales, boudin, risotto, and pulled pork (maybe Monday), with poundcake/strawberry puree and coconut creme pie for desserts. Lots of variety to add to it.


I didn’t make it to the jam this afternoon. The Moderna reaction flared this morning in lungs, trachea, and throat, plus upper sinuses. The effect has receded, but I still have trouble singing. I would have been a liability, not to mention all the prep, packing, and toting in an event environment with limited parking. So I bowed out, not being up for it.


It was a pretty day, sunny, low humidity, 70s, mild breeze. Doors and windows were open. But it did get cool enough for the poncho last night and this morning. Back on this evening.

Pork Halloween

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For starters, I got 22 lb of pork yesterday, a 12 lb pork loin and a 10 lb Boston butt. The loin is marinating.

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2.5 gallon zipbag


The pork loin will likely be cooked tonight. The shoulder roast will go in the slow cooker some time in the near future, perhaps Sunday, to make more pulled pork. Both are destined for the top loader.


I’ll be performing at the Pioneer BBQ tomorrow with Lynn and maybe others. It’s a downtown Halloween event, Treats on Main Street. 3-6 pm, 13 shops participating, a safe trick or treat alternative for the kids and a general happening.


There were more reactions to the Moderna booster, a very sore right thumb that took extensive massaging to relieve. But there haven’t been any intense reactions in the last 24 hours, so hopefully I’m out of the woods. I don’t mind some side effects to achieve a degree of immunity, but there are limits to my patience.


The chicken/broccoli/rice is history. I got a supply of quick fix for occasional variety platters. Steak fingers, chicken nuggets, fish sticks, popcorn shrimp, curly fries, onion rings. Not an every day thing by any means, but a way to celebrate new freezer space by filling it up again. And I didn’t get the trashy kind, I got quality.


It’s still breezy outside, not as bad as when the front came through, but the leaves are still bouncing about. Today is the last day for it. Blue skies, zero cloud cover. Cool nights, moderate days. Dew point continues to be down in the 30s. Not too bad.

Rages

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A storm system blew through town this morning, dropping around half an inch of rain behind door-slamming winds. The rains have departed, leaving blue skies in their wake, but the wind continues, though slightly abated. Trees are still dancing. Doors and windows are shut, furnace inactive, temp rising to about 80°F.


At the same time as the flurry, my respiratory system was screaming with a reaction to the vaccination. Prior to that, I thought I was getting off easy with only a sore arm and a very mild headache. A wild morning, to say the least. I can feel a slight residual, but it abated to bearable levels within 20 minutes. This one has turned out slightly stronger than #2. Sleep helps.


I got the freezers squared away.
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Prepared foods.
Top loader, w/ ice, butcher shop proteins.


Yes, three cartons of Blue Bell, Strawberry Cheesecake, Coconut Cream Pie, Homemade Vanilla (for the strawberry puree). The onion rings in the door is a milestone trophy, something I could never justify with a single freezer. Curly fries are next, along with breaded finger steaks, fried cheese sticks, etc. Call it “showing-off platters”, a mix of six or seven quick fix finger food items to a plate. Not a steady staple, rather a novelty meal every now and then.


The bags in the top loader are (bottom, L to R) roasted chicken quarters, steaks, ground chuck, (top) marinated pork tenderloin and ham, turkey. The sorted bags of bags makes finding stuff much easier, and nothing gets top loader lost down at the bottom. No ice trays for the winter, loading the ice bin from the bags with the scoop. Fingers stay much warmer. The wood mallet arrived yesterday, perfect timing, nice mallet.


Chores are done. I have the rest of the day off. Lunch was the chicken/broccoli rice dish, quite satisfying. Dinner TBD. Poundcake with strawberry puree and whipped cream for the afternoon snack.

Cov Potion Number Three

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I had my Moderna booster at 10 am. They were running a little late, but not too late. So it’s done and scratched off of the todo list. I took care of chores last night (except laundry, freezer transfer, and cooking, none being time sensitive). So I’m good to kick back and sleep off the injection.


I’m not sure just what kind of reaction to expect. I’m tending to look more at #2 than #1, since my body has been trained to react. I doubt if it will be as strong, considering the time factor and half dosage. Nothing overt yet, but it takes a few hours.


I turned on the AC, as the forecast shows 89°F as a high. And dew point is 73°F. Very light breeze. It’s getting to be on the muggy side. I want to be as comfortable today as possible.

Diphenhydramine

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Gobbling benadryl for the skeeter bites I got while cleaning out the top loading freezer on the back porch. It is currently plugged in and cooling down…


I just got a couple of 16 lb bags of crushed ice, both as ice for my drinks and as thermal ballast. I had four 2 gallon ziplocks for steak, ground chuck, chicken quarters, and pork tenderloin/ham. I got 24 more bags on the store run I just made (flautas, gouda, bacon, ice).


I scheduled the Moderna injection for 9:40 am, early in the day. The ragweed reaction has settled down, so let the antibodies rage anew. Gitt’r done. Then comes the flu shot.


The rib eye and avocado are history. Had the second round last night. Yum. Making use of the easy fix and eating bread until I get the chicken/broccoli/rice made tonight. Too warm for a big cook until later in the week.


Mid 80s outside as the sun sinks. Dew point about 70°F. Not too bad, but not dry. Managed to get by without the AC. Not complaining as long as I’m sitting still.

blink

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I slept eight hours with one short break, to take my meds. The ice in my drink had fully melted when I woke. I can’t remember the last time that I was out for that long. Blame it on the gold potato/rib eye/bacon/gouda/avocado. I have to say that I feel better for the sleep, so I obviously needed it. Myka was glad to see me coming around. (Not sure if it was because she was happy to see me stirring or because she got to grab the LZB2 for herself.)


The ragweed pollen reaction has subsided. Upper sinuses are still a tad puffy, but the rest of my respiratory tract is much improved. Glad to be on this side of it.


Weather has been lovely, windows staying open for over three days straight. Sunny, comfortable, long soaks in the tub weather. That hasn’t helped ease the pollen, but I would have had the antibody response regardless.


I missed the jam on Thursday. It just wasn’t in the cards. There was too much to do to get ready, and I wasn’t up to it. And my throat was in no condition for singing. I stayed at home and took it easy.


Not much going on while my body has been adapting. Low key across the board.

Rag, momma, rag

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I looked at the ragweed levels, and they are quite high. My throat and sinuses have been nagging me the last few days, and the pollen is probably a fair part of the lethargy I’m feeling, enough to tip the scales. I’m not allergic, but there is an adaptation period where the antibodies need to adapt.


So I’m useless during the nicest weather I’ve seen since May. I have decided not to attend the jam, as my voice is affected. No sense in pressing my luck and going through the routine of prep and making matters worse.


Almost done with the pulled pork. The rib eye has further to go. Been leaning toward alternatives, as both are capable of lasting in the fridge. Fish and shrimp, chicken fajita, thinking pizza or pot pie tonight, or a baked potato. Bread and gouda… Something without prep.


Watching Pirates of the Caribbean series.

Tuesday twiddles

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Things are hanging before me, like doctor, dentist, and vet visits, truck repairs, and more, and I can’t seem to get interested in them. It’s not depression, it’s just more aches and pains, side effects, lack of stamina, my body’s desire to remain in a state of rest. Part is an uncertainty in the remainder of the year, whether there will be exile and when. Lots of unanswered questions making it difficult to plan anything long term.


The weather is nice, sunny and mild, dew point around 60°F. It’s perfect weather for swapping out the alternator. But getting the momentum up and going just isn’t happening.


There is not a lot of problems with my chemistry. Things feel balanced. I’m not worried about the blood tests. That part of my health is good. It’s joints, nerves, and sedation from the hypertensives. Within my limits, I’m capable, but exceed my limits, and I have to sit and recover for longer than I can sustain. Progress by the drop.


Other than that, things are pretty slow. I can handle the day-to-day, cooking, shopping, cleaning, bit by bit, it slowly gets done. It’s getting out on the road and making schedules that needs work to make it happen.


Moderna boosters look as if they’ll be approved this week. But there are still plenty of ifs and whens involved there.


Things could be worse. Pulled pork, rib eye, green chili tamales, and more makes up the main menu, but lots of alternatives. And the LZB2 is quite comfy (to a fault). The windows are open, a nice breeze freshening the house. I don’t want to sound like life is terrible, it’s not. It’s just challenging, and I’m not up to the challenges.

Ribi

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Ribi

Thaw

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Boudin, pulled pork, and a hefty rib eye are in the kitchen sink, beginning to thaw. Jambalaya will be next, but that will be a few days away. The rest of the month looks to be mostly 80s/60s. Most likely, the AC will not be on, and moderate weather dishes will prevail. Cooler weather dishes will wait until November.


Thinking of a light store run. Used up the last of the fresh litter. A little of this and that, but nothing really dire. I’m still well stocked and need to eat certain items from the freezer before they burn.


I canceled the Apple Arcade trial early this morning. Storage has been paid, all bills cleared for the month. Internet is covered fully for another month from the refund. I have a doctor appointment and blood draw (fast) I need to arrange, covered by insurance. I will also get a Moderna booster. Myka needs her vaccinations, and those will cost. By and large, not counting LZB2, it has been a frugal month.


Falling behind on software updates and digital house keeping. I hope to get some done this weekend. None has been direly needed, but it is piling up.

Violet skies

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I landed a used Kenmore 5 cu ft top loading freezer to catch the overflow of the kitchen freezer, as well as hold a couple of 16 lb bags of ice. It can hold the recipe items like chicken quarters, pork loin/tenderloin, steaks, ground chuck, seafood, puree, etc. It would make a lot more room for the nuke and eat, ice cream, etc. I have been looking at wooden mallets for breaking up the bagged ice.


I’m back on the spronolactone, as I started showing a little edema, a sign that any accumulation had cleared my system. So I’ll see if the dizziness returns. I can feel it, but I wouldn’t call it dizziness yet.


The remnants of Pacific Hurricane Pamela dropped about 2.5 inches of rain Wednesday night/Thursday morning. But it has passed through, skies are clear, and we’re about to get another cool spell. It will drop from 90°F (Friday afternoon) to 46°F (Sunday morning). AC off, furnace on. Feline leg warmer for sleeping.


Apple Arcade trial gets canceled within the next two days, to prevent any payment being made. I wasn’t that impressed.


Chili and risotto are gone. The avocado, brisket chili, cheddar spuds were delightful. Contemplating what is next.
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The chili strata is well hidden.

Chronologically challenged

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Time is passing without much connection to progress. I have been intending on making avocado brisket chili cheese spuds for fourteen hours now, yet none have been brought into existence. It’s not a particularly difficult recipe, since the brisket chili is already made.


The dizziness has vanished with the skipping of spironolactone, now a third dose bypassed. Not sure what it is about diuretics that just doesn’t seem to agree with me. I’ll probably skip at least one more, give my body a chance for a full flush.


AC was off all day. The front blew out the humidity. So ambient interior has been the course of the day.


Not much going on. Chores have been next to non-existent, because I’ve been doing very little to make them happen.