It’s now just the two of us again. YaYu departed for her summer adventure in Japan this past Thursday morning, and it’s taken us these past couple of days to get used to her absence. We know she’s going to have a wonderful time there this summer (and would have been completely bored here with us). I had a long conversation with her yesterday – she was getting ready to learn how to pick up C from school. She’ll be doing it for the first time on her own tomorrow and is nervous.
This is apparently going to be My Summer of Dental Work. After having lots of x-rays taken and an exam done by my dentist last week, beginning tomorrow I will be having (in order of the work being done): a major filling, an extraction, another filling, a crown, bridge prep and new front lower bridge, cleaning and whitening. The extraction will be in my lower front in preparation for the new bridge, so for the next six weeks I am going to have a gap there while it heals – lovely. However, my old bridge is 30 years old and old technology, and it’s frankly a miracle it’s held on this long. In the time between tomorrow’s filling and extraction and getting the bridge installed, the crown and the other filling will be done. Other than the cavities – my first ones in nearly 50 years – I knew all of this was coming and it’s finally time to deal with it. We are expecting the bill, even after insurance, to be quite high – we’ll receive an estimate tomorrow. I will be glad however to have my teeth in the best shape possible when we head overseas again.
Brett and I were going to go see the Starlight Parade last night, the opening event in Portland’s annual Rose Festival. The parade is a celebration of all that is weird and wacky in Portland and a lot of fun. Unfortunately, my back had other ideas so we ended up staying home – there was no way I could have stood for that long. In the 20+ years we lived in Portland we never made it to the Starlight Parade, so we were very much looking forward to going, but in the long run I’d rather my back feeling better than worse.
Finally, there are four more days left for the obi giveaway, so four more chances to win (please enter on the original giveaway post). Giveaway #2 will be announced on Thursday, and the winner for Giveaway #1 on Friday.
This morning I am:
- Reading: I finished reading All You Can Ever Know, by Nicole Chung. She was adopted as an infant, and writes about her experiences and feelings growing up in a loving white family (she is ethnically Korean), and in a community where she was “different,” then searching for her birth family (her adoption was domestic, so not the same hurdles as it would have been if the adoption had been international). Her reactions and feelings about her adoption and meeting her birth family are compelling and emotional. Today I’m starting An American Marriage by Tayari Jones, and after that I have another Val McDermid mystery to read.
- Listening to: It’s quiet now, but earlier it sounded like one of the families that live in our condo buildings was getting ready to go on vacation of something. We could hear what sounded like the dad and the kids getting the car packed to go somewhere out on the street side of our building (the courtyard side is quiet though). The kids were very excited which made me wonder where they were going! Inside though it’s quiet – Brett is reading while eating a bowl of oatmeal and I’m up on the sofa, writing.
- Watching: We finished up all the available episodes of Fleabag and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel before YaYu left – we all loved them both and are looking forward to upcoming seasons. Brett and I have been watching Chernobyl the last few days, which we found extremely sobering – I knew the accident was bad, but I had no idea how bad until now. The final episode will be tomorrow evening. Last night I watched all three episodes of The ABC Murders (starring John Malkovich) on Amazon – it was very well done.
- Cooking/baking: We are going to have zoodles with meat sauce tonight – our new spiralizer has arrived (we left our old one back on Kaua’i by accident). On the menu this week will be pork chops, fried cauliflower rice, teriyaki chicken, and pizza on Friday evening. I’m not sure what we’ll be having the other two evenings although I’m dreaming of another Cobb salad.
- Happy I accomplished this week: We helped YaYu pack and got her safely off at the airport – she had an easy if long flight and arrived in Japan on time and is settling in. I filled in all of this week’s goals card – having to check things off motivates me to get things done, and I’m also someone who hates to see things go unfinished! I hurt my back earlier in the week and didn’t think I would get much walking done, but somehow, except for Monday, when my back was at its worse, by the end of each day I had walked at least a mile and a half! I’m taking it slow though so that I don’t re-injure my back again.
- Looking forward to next week: The OHSU farmer’s market opens on Wednesday afternoon and we’re planning to go and see what’s there. We may also go to the main Portland farmer’s market on Saturday, down in the Park Blocks by Portland State University. Brett and I want to visit NW Portland’s Lan Su Chinese Garden this week, and later today we’re going to ride the aerial tram down and back up as well as walk around the neighborhood at the bottom of the hill. We’re planning to take at least two more hikes through the forest this week (but hopefully more) – it is so wonderful to be in there. Of course, everything is dependent on the weather. If it rains we’re pretty much stuck inside but so far it looks like a good week ahead.
- Thinking of good things that happened: We spent a wonderful morning on Friday catching up with our friend Joan – we thought we’d visit a couple of hours and instead spent nearly five hours chatting away (which included a short walk in the forest). I picked up a small bunch of peonies, my favorite flower, at Trader Joe’s this past week. They’re slowly blooming, which is fine with me because the longer they last the better. Brett started his calligraphy class here yesterday and had a very good first session! Although we spent a lot of money last week we are now well stocked for the summer and shouldn’t have to go back to Costco, Winco or Target at all – our shopping will now be limited to small trips to Trader Joe’s and the farmer’s market, or we might have food delivered from New Seasons. I ordered a pair of leggings from J. Jill (on sale) and they turned out to be too big, something I never thought would happen to me these days so I am returning them for a smaller size. I found a pair of lovely, affordable sterling silver hoop earrings made by a local artisan at an airport shop after we said goodbye to YaYu, so that’s another summer goal that’s been accomplished.
- Thinking of frugal things we did: This was not a frugal week – we spent A LOT of money on food, wine, and supplies to get us through the summer. We at least ate all our leftovers and did not waste any food, and we put $15.49 into our change/$1 bill bag.
- Grateful for: There are so many transportation options in Portland, and we’re finding it very easy to get around town without having a car. We can also get free delivery from our favorite grocery store (New Seasons), and we’ve signed up for a car-share service. We’re feeling very thankful to have so many ways to get around this summer without having had to rent a car.
- Bonus question? What’s on your nightstand? Well, what’s not on my bedside table at this house is a lamp, which I wish was there. Otherwise, there’s a small dish that holds my ear plugs, some lip balm and cuticle cream from Lush, my Kindle because I always read in bed at night, a coaster because I always have a glass of water by the bed at night, my little inu hariko figure, and an inu hariko ema I bought at a temple we visited in Japan. This table has a drawer, and inside I keep my sleep mask and a bag of odds and ends I carry with me (emery boards, tape measure, extra ear plugs, sewing kit, etc.).
I am dreading my time in the dentist’s chair tomorrow, but I know it’s all going to make me better in the end. I will survive. And, the ride over there and back on the bus and tram turned out not to be as bad as I thought it would be, thank goodness. I am really warming to this whole not having a car thing more and more. Our Zipcar pass arrived yesterday and we are logged in, so will have use of a car if absolutely necessary, but otherwise we’re sticking to public transportation and walking.
I’m looking forward to the coming week and hope you are too! I’m also hoping that you had lots of good things happen for you this past week, that you’ve got a good book to read and good food to eat, and that everything else is going well.