Home > Archive: September, 2016

Archive for September, 2016

Day Two Hundred Sixteen

September 24th, 2016 at 02:38 pm

Calories: 1566

In a few minutes I have to leave for a baseball game. I've already been to the gym and the grocery store. I spent $34 at Food4Less for 9 items: crackers, pantiliners, kitty litter, cat chow, canned mushroom soup, frozen green pepper, 2 packages of muffins, and one box of nut bars. The nut bars are for my travels; the muffins, thinking ahead to work days (I'll freeze them).

After the game, we will hold my grandson's birthday party at the park. I got him a stack of books he can read by himself. He won't be excited, but I'm also providing gift receipts, so they can be exchanged if they are not quite right. I still need to get a birthday card -- also one for my cousin, whose birthday is Monday.

I reserved a taxi for tomorrow morning -- it will be $42 to go to the airport (including tip). I'll have to make sure I have the right cash, though I think this taxi service will accept a credit card.

I have to finish packing, clean the litter box, clean the fish tank, vacuum and take out the trash. So much work involved in travel.

I talked to my son yesterday, and he said my DIL will pick me up at the airport. I probably won't see him at all, unless he is able to finish his project early.

I really hate the day before travel -- does anyone else feel this way?

I probably won't be checking in while in Florida, so this is good-bye for a while!

Day Two Hundred Fifteen

September 23rd, 2016 at 03:48 pm

Calories: 1333

My visit to the podiatrist was very productive. He gave me a removable pad to wear on the bottom of my foot to both pad the corn and correct my gait. He assigned some calf-stretching exercises. He also instructed me to take ibuprofen 3X a day -- three tablets at a time -- for 3 days. And ice my foot each evening. He wants to wipe out all inflammation to see where we stand then. Needless to say, my foot feels better -- and so does my hip and and my knee, and everything else that hurt even a little! Smile

He said that surgery is off the table -- it won't help. But I will probably get orthotics. He wants to see me in a week, but I'll be in Florida -- and then he's out of the office from Friday-Monday -- so the appointment was made for October 4. I made it for 7AM so I can go from there to work!

My co-pay was $50. I've hemorrhaged so much money this month it really doesn't matter.

This morning, after the gym, I went and got my labs done. I'm ticking off as much of the medical stuff as I can before work starts. I think the labs will be covered by my Medicare supplement.

Does anyone here use Uber? I have downloaded the app but never used it. Can you schedule a ride ahead of time? I don't want to fool around and get to the airport late. I'm wondering if I should just go ahead and schedule a taxi.

Day Two Hundred Fourteen

September 22nd, 2016 at 02:20 pm

Calories: 1534

In a couple of hours I am going to the podiatrist -- first visit. I am going to have him look at my corn (which I've had for more than a year now) and I want to discuss the pain I have on the ball of my foot and in my toes. It is the same foot that was wrenched when my ankle broke, and I suspect it is all related.

Tomorrow I'm getting my labs done. I've also made appointments for physical therapy - pelvic issues. My PT appointments are on Wednesday and Friday afternoons, so I am going to set up my work schedule to have Wednesday and Friday afternoons free. I'll make any upcoming appointments on those days. I do still need to make a follow-up appointment with my primary physician, but that's in 3-4 months.

It will be interesting to see how much is covered by Medicare and my supplement. So far I have paid nothing out of pocket except a couple of $15 co-pays since I've been on Medicare.

It's supposed to be hot today, but so far it is not bad, and I just have the fans going.

I've decided what clothes to take to Florida and have them set aside to pack. I can't take the suitcase out until the last minute because my cats give me the evil eye.

Day Two Hundred Thirteen

September 21st, 2016 at 02:44 pm

Calories: 1459

It's raining. It matches my mood. I'm feeling down. I think I'm worrying about money, and at the same time worrying about getting back to work and keeping that kind of schedule.

I elected to drive in and use the on-site workspace, rather than try to do it remotely. Remote didn't work well last time, what with the clunky equipment they provided and the weak connection. Also, this time I will be working in the same area as the other researcher, who will be a great resource when I have questions and problems. I will be able to work a lot more efficiently.

Of course, going in means using more gas, tying up time on the commute, having to pack food, etc. etc. etc.

I'm also going to have to figure out how to fit in Planet Fitness. I think I'm just going to have to go in the evening after I get home. I'm glad they're open all the time.

I would say I'm glad I have a vacation in Florida coming up, but I don't think I'll do much relaxing, what with caring for two little ones. My DIL will be there, but the idea is to take the burden off her....

See, I'm just in a sad, whiny mood. I'm going to work on getting out of it!

Day Two Hundred Twelve

September 20th, 2016 at 08:12 pm

Calories: 1632

Oy Vay! What a day!

Actually, it started last night. I went to election judge training. Everyone was nice, but we were packed into a FREEZING room, and information was just thrown at us, nonstop. Turns out there is MUCH to do, many steps to remember, and a lot of technology to master. Half the time I felt I didn't know what they were talking about. I wish they had explained a little more about the "why" and not just the "what." I can retain instructions better if I understand the purpose.

But I do have a big manual that explains everything, step by step, so I should be okay on the day, especially if I am teamed with someone who has done it before.

I'll have to help with set-up the night before, so it is more than a one-day thing. And I'll have to be there before 6am, to help get everything ready, and stay till after 7pm -- probably an hour after the polls close, to do all the necessary paperwork and packing up. It will earn me $195, but I don't think it will be easy money.

I won't know where I am assigned until I get a letter in the mail. I hope it's at my own polling place, but there's no telling.

So, anyway, at break time I was DYING for something to drink (something wet, not alcoholic!) I spent $1.25 for a diet coke, which I just about had to wrestle out of the vending machine.

That was just the beginning of my spending.

This morning I went to the gym as usual, but the sound in the back of the car was worse. I decided to go to Firestone after my workout -- to get the tires rotated, as I was planning, and to have the mechanic take a look at the back brakes.

Yeah, I've spent another $423 on the car. I am dealing with it this way -- this car was almost trouble-free for many years. It's been paid off since 2006, and I've enjoyed the luxury of having very little car expense. Now, all the repairs seem to be coming at once. I am paying my dues now for all those carefree years.

So I was sitting at Firestone, dressed in my stinky sweats, waiting to get the car back. I had my museum appointment coming up, and it started to look like I wasn't going to make it on time. I emailed my boss, but she didn't reply. The car was finally ready at the last possible minute. I drove home, pulled on some clean clothes, and drove to the museum, pulling into the parking garage at the exact moment I was supposed to be there.

My boss had been in a meeting, but I saw later that she DID reply -- just not before I had started my mad dash.

We had a good talk. I'm going to get my contract renewed. I'll start on October 3, and it sounds like I could work full-time till the end of the year if I want. They are that backed up and desperate for help. Once I get started, I'll see how the work goes and figure out how much time I want to devote to it.

I'll be working with the new researcher, and I could tell just from our few moments together that we will get along very well.

I spent $9 on breakfast and lunch, because of all this running around. Then I gave $10 to a homeless man! I know, crazy. I was just feeling grateful that I had the money to take care of all this expense, and I had the urge to help someone else.

I have used up all but $15 of the surplus I had in my variables budget, plus I'm taking almost $5K out of savings. Unbelievable month. May I not have another one like this for a long time!

Day Two Hundred Eleven

September 19th, 2016 at 03:12 pm

Calories: 1454

Dang it, more car trouble? When I brake, I hear a gentle, rhythmic, thump-thump-thump in the back. I'll have to get it checked out, but I would like to wait until after the Florida trip.

I was confused about my days; my election judge training actually takes place tonight.

When I get done with this, I will add 1.26 to my snowflakes -- $1.25 for a free MyMixx item (Starbucks Refresher) and .01 found money.

Someone abandoned a basket of laundry in our laundry room about three months ago. It has sat there undisturbed all this time. Yesterday I decided it must be truly abandoned; that no one is ever coming back for it -- so I decided to re-wash it and donate the contents.

Would you believe there was a pair of workout pants in there? Very nice Nike pants. However, I believe they are too long for me, so I will probably donate them. What I will keep, however, are a couple of towels and a cat bed and a North Face fleece pullover -- which is also too big, and not at all new, but it will be good for layering this winter.

I hope this isn't the wrong thing to do -- I just can't see leaving it there to be ruined eventually.

I went to my grandson's soccer game yesterday. It looked like he started out enthusiastically and then just checked out. Turns out someone on his team had said something mean to him. Poor heart, he is so sensitive, and as I have said, not at all athletic. I just can't bear how kids can be so mean. And always to the nicest ones.

Day Two Hundred Ten

September 18th, 2016 at 12:30 pm

Calories: 1607

I didn't get to the gym until late in the day yesterday, but I felt so much better once I did.

No spending yesterday.

This evening I go for training to be an election judge. It lasts four hours! The location is in a neighboring suburb, so I'll have to figure out the best way to get there. Driving, probably. I hope there is free parking. There was no training scheduled in my own suburb.

I will get paid for training, but it will be rolled up in my payment on election day. All together the payment is $195. The payment for training is $45. Apparently, some people work without getting trained. Maybe because they've done it a lot already?

Next year, after I see how this goes, I may apply to be an Election Coordinator. They get paid $500.

Have to do laundry today. I have a shortage of workout clothing, particularly pants. I need to get some sweats or yoga pants, but obviously, this is not the time, financially, to do that.

I would also like to get a pair of black clogs. I have black loafers that have served me well, but now they hurt the back of my heel for some reason. Increasingly, I like clogs because they will not hurt my heel -- and they usually have a nice wide box, so they don't aggravate my corn.

This, too, is something I have to wait for.

10 days until pay day (which will occur while I am in Florida). There will be more spending before then. I will have to Uber to the airport, and I've decided to pay $25 for my larger suitcase. That way I can haul along the clothing I've collected for the kids, as well as have room to pack a change of clothing every day. I don't want to be worrying about laundry when I'm taking care of two little ones. That will be challenging enough.

I'll probably be buying food at the airport as well, simply because I will start my day at 5 am and will arrive in Florida at 3 pm. Don't think I can carry enough food to cover that time span.

On Tuesday I start at the museum, so I am entering a busy time. I plan to do some relaxing today.

Day Two Hundred Nine

September 17th, 2016 at 06:39 pm

Calories: 1370

I finally heard from the museum yesterday. My boss' daughter had been in a serious car accident, and that was the reason she did not get back to me, or respond to my emails.

I asked how she was doing, and she said getting better. Sounds like it was bad, and she didn't want to talk about it.

Anyway, I'm going in on Tuesday to talk about what needs to be done. I told her I am unavailable the last week in September, and she said that was no problem.

So whew, yes, I will make a little extra money.

I spent $45 yesterday for a fundraiser for my grandsons' school. The parents have shelled out so much for various fees and expenses; I felt like this was the least I could do.

I attended a baseball game last night and this morning -- both wins, and both times my grandson was chosen MVP! He is getting really good. This morning the coach called out to my son, "I love your kid! He's all business!"

Tomorrow it is soccer with my younger grandson. This will be a different story. As my DIL says, he's there for the outfit, snacks, and socializing. This one will never be an athlete, but he is a great kid -- very caring, kind and sensitive -- all traits so much more important than athleticism.

I have yet to go to the gym today, so that will get done later.

Variables now 144%. Auuuggghhh!

Day Two Hundred Eight

September 16th, 2016 at 04:00 pm

Calories: 1362

I'm home from the gym, and from shopping at Aldi. I spent $25 and got my ten items: spinach, ground beef, corn muffin mix, ice cream, frozen asparagus, honey wheat bread, granola, canned biscuits, canned mushrooms, and white baking chips.

I got 5 lbs. of ground beef for 1.99 per lb. It is only 80% lean, but I will cook it off and drain it. Cooking and freezing it in batches will be one of my chores today.

This morning I made some peanut soup to have later. Yesterday I made chicken taco meat, and chicken barbecue, using up the remainder of two huge split chicken breasts I baked off the day before. Then I boiled the bones and scraps, creating the broth that went into today's peanut soup. Suddenly I have a lot of food on hand; I'll have to decide what to eat and what to freeze.

GS1 is playing baseball this evening and tomorrow morning. GS2 is having a Tae Kwan Do class after school, but now that the class has been moved to the school, I'm not sure if spectators are welcome any more. Anyway, my entertainment is set.

My List

September 16th, 2016 at 12:58 pm

What fun! I'll do a second post today about calories and such. Many of these things you know if you're a reader....

1. I retired in 2015.
2. I was married for 14 years, and I've been divorced for 32 years. (Wow!)
3. I have two grown sons, both married. I have four grandchildren, ages 9-1.
4. I love animals, and I've had many dogs and cats through the years. Now I have two cats, Mystery and Enigma (Iggy).
5. I work post-retirement as a consultant, but my one client, a major museum, hands out work sparingly and unpredictably.
6. I have traveled outside the US only once - to Canada, and I'm dying to change that.
7. I am working on a novel, but right now I am stalled, and avoiding the whole idea.
8. I enjoy cooking, especially using up leftovers in a new way, and avoiding waste.
9. I am an avid reader.
10. I am a recent convert to working out; I go to the gym almost every day.
11. I have met two fellow bloggers, and would love to meet more!
12. Sometimes I don't read very thoroughly and I just realized this list was supposed to have 20 items!
13. I was an English major in college and then earned an MLIS (Masters of Library and Information Science).
14. I was a librarian for about 20 years, then switched to the research arm of development (i.e. fundraising).
15. I received an award for alerting development officers to a donor who gave us a $4M lead gift.
16. Last year I stepped down from 10 years of service on the board of my professional organization.
17. My good-bye gift was a scholarship established in my name for professional development for young researchers.
18. I really like to make things last -- my current ride is 15 years old, and I plan to make it last three more years.
19. Even though I am divorced, I have a cordial relationship with my ex, and see him at many family gatherings and holidays.
20. I was born in Indiana, grew up in Ohio, Wisconsin, and Michigan, and am now a happy resident of a Chicago suburb famous for mansions, education, and temperance!

Day Two Hundred Seven

September 15th, 2016 at 02:58 pm

Calories: 1076

Very low calorie day without much pain & sorrow. Makes up for the day before.

After the gym workout this morning, I stopped at PetSmart and got cat food and fish food. I used $8.50 worth of coupons, and total spent was $21.

I've not taken the statin for two days now, and I can feel the difference already. I still have pain if I squeeze my thighs, but there is none of the buzzy, throbbing pain that was there even when I was just lying down. I am very hopeful that I have found my solution. However, I know that I am one of those people with inherited cholesterol problems, so I am sure that labs will show high cholesterol and a need to find another statin. My doctor says there are others out there that won't do this to me.

Diet and exercise does not help my cholesterol problem. I've been down that road already.

I started taking the Pepcid prescription yesterday. I don't have acid reflux more than a couple times a week, but it's uncomfortable when it happens. I haven't been able to tie it with any dietary habits. I'm pretty sure I won't have any symptoms at all while taking Pepcid.

Now I need to start scheduling appointments -- labs, podiatrist, physical therapist. Sigh. Plus my doctor wants to see me again in 3-4 months.

The museum is still leaving me hanging, so I'm just going to proceed as if I haven't been asked to work. I can't just put my life on hold while they get their act together. (I think I've said this before!)

Day Two Hundred Six

September 14th, 2016 at 04:40 pm

Calories: 2227

It was a good day -- just not calorie-wise or financially!

Calories were not too bad until I succumbed to ice cream after dinner. Can't even explain why I did it, except that it sounded good and I wanted it.

Financially -- I expected there would be a lot of spending. I spent $14 for two meals out, so that was not bad, but the dentist cost $235, even with the senior discount. I was due for x-rays. No problems were spotted, and I got a pat on the back for good dental care. After the dentist, I went to a fundraiser the College was holding, and the cover charge was $10. I bought a $2 drink while there. I paid $26 for gas and the oil change cost $69. That did include a new rear wiper, but the rest was the oil and the labor and topping off fluids.

I was advised that I should rotate my tires, but when they attempted it, one of the bolts was too stubborn to loosen. They didn't want to risk breaking it, so they recommended that I go to a tire shop and have it done. If the bolt breaks there, they have the equipment to fix it. So that's another thing to do.

Today I filled a prescription - $10.

So here is the bad news. My variables spending is 132%. That includes everything except the bill for the $4K+ car repair I had done in Indiana. However, because I have often come in under budget, I'm still in the black overall. I have a surplus of $193.

This kind of month will happen now and then and I'm not worried. I'm sure I can rack up another few under-budget months this year.

I had a lot of fun yesterday visiting with old friends, but today I'm really looking forward to being quiet and lazy!

Day Two Hundred Five

September 13th, 2016 at 03:00 pm

Calories: 1374

The doctor's appointment went well, I'm going to follow up on a lot of things we talked about -- foot problems (I'll see a podiatrist), GERD (going to read up, plus fill a prescription), urge incontinence (will see a physical therapist), and muscle spasms in my legs (will take a break from my statin; perhaps switch to another). I'm going to get a bone density test, which I've neglected to do for too long -- it just kind of fell off my map. I also got my second pneumococcal vaccine.

My weight was only about 7 pounds less than it was last year. Two reasons, I think -- I gained during the year (hence, couldn't fit into my pants) before starting the diet, and I have probably built up some heavier muscle in the last few months. It was discouraging to hear, but I won't be swayed from my course. I know I am doing the best I can. (Oh, I forgot the other reason -- NO FRICKIN' METABOLISM!) Okay, I feel better now. Whew.

I had to pay $2 for a parking place, but found .14 as I walked to the medical building. One dime and four pennies, all in different places. I also spent $1.50 on laundry yesterday.

Today I'm heading to my old work town, where I will see my dentist, see some old friends, and get an oil change. And fill the gas tank. I will have to buy lunch, maybe dinner, too, if the day gets long. I will try to be frugal.

I've already been to the gym, and I had my free bagel breakfast. And orange juice. Life is good.

Day Two Hundred Four

September 12th, 2016 at 12:13 pm

Calories: 1302

I knew I had a doctor's appointment today, and I had it in my head that it was 9 am. So I had it in my head to wake up early, so I could go to the gym beforehand.

I woke up at 6, got up, got my coffee, and looked at my calendar. My appointment is at 6pm!

Besides that, I don't want to go to the gym until later, because it's pizza day! I'll aim to arrive there at 5. With any luck, I'll get the pizza AND get to the doctor's on time.

My Discover payment cycle closed today, so I paid it, just to get that pain out of the way. $4771 payment, which includes that big repair bill. I took it from my e-fund. The good news is that I earned $49 in cashback savings.

I only ate two meals yesterday, so I never made the shepherd's pie. Hope to get that done today, as well as at least one load of laundry.