(Sorry for the delay today – my publish function didn’t want to cooperate!)
We have a winner, or rather three of them! Using the Random Name Picker, the first place winner for a bag of Mexican flavored coffee is Carol, second place is Beautea97, and third place is Linda from Practical Parsimony! Congratulations to all! As soon as I hear from Carol with her choice of coffee flavors, I will contact Beautea97 for her choice between the remaining two, and then Linda will receive the flavor that’s remaining. Thank you so much to everyone who entered – it took me quite a while to get all the entries loaded into the Name Picker!
Fall arrives this month! Other than our time in Europe in 2018 and 2019, this will be our first sustained fall season in quite a while. There were seasonal changes in Hawaii, but they were subtle and we had to pay careful attention to notice and enjoy them. I’m genuinely looking forward to some cooler weather and also fixing some heartier meals and soups. We’re going to “upgrade” our tiny patio in the next couple of weeks; that is, find a couple of inexpensive patio chairs and something to go up against the railing so Kai can’t escape. We want to be able sit outside the next couple of months to enjoy the cooler weather and watch the leaves on the trees behind us change.
The wait for our credenza continues. No one, neither FedEx nor Burrow, knows what happened or where the missing package is. Burrow has been very good about communicating with me and I could tell this past week they were almost frantic about the situation. They finally decided to ship another whole unit to us and pick up the half credenza we currently have. Brett and I thought about canceling the order but we like everything about this piece of furniture – the style, quality, wood, and price – and we are willing to wait for a new one. I’m of course unhappy about the delay, but Burrow has stayed on top of it and communicated regularly while they tried to figure out what happened.
We aren’t doing anything this Labor Day weekend, but next weekend, along with M & K, we’ll be going on a short road trip to western North Carolina. We’re leaving on Thursday after we pick up K from school, spending the night in Asheville, then visiting Biltmore House and Gardens on Friday morning (in two groups so that someone remains outside with Kai). Friday afternoon we’ll drive over to Grandfather Mountain and walk across the mile-high Swinging Bridge, then head up to Boone where we’ve rented a lovely Airbnb for two nights. Saturday morning we’ll drive some more of the Blue Ridge Parkway and visit Blowing Rock and the Blue Deer Bakery before heading back to Boone for the evening. We’ll leave to come home on Sunday morning. There won’t be a Sunday post next week; I will catch up on Monday.
This morning I am thinking about:
- What we accomplished: 1) Brett got his Tennessee driver’s license last week. I was supposed to get mine at the same time, but it took Brett 45 minutes (while Kai and I waited outside) so I will get mine this week. I tried to make an appointment, but the first opening was November 1, so I’ll just have to stand in line and wait my turn. 2) We visited the Morning Glory Orchard on Thursday and had a great time there as well as a wonderful drive through the countryside (and also learned a couple of new things about the area). 3) I finally got around to filing a claim with our insurance for the medication I bought over the counter while we were in Mexico. Lots of paperwork and copies, but it’s on its way. 4) Otherwise, there were no big accomplishments this past week except to plan our getaway, which was fun. Hot weather or thunderstorms kept us mostly indoors, so much reading and relaxing got done, and a very cute little dog was played with and walked.
- What we’re looking forward to next week: Brett’s parents, grandparents, and other ancestors came from the area we’ll be visiting in North Carolina. I’ve heard much about it over the years and am excited about finally getting to see this part of his past. Brett hasn’t been back since he was in high school so he’s excited to revisit as well, and we think our DIL and K will enjoy Biltmore House, the Blue Ridge Parkway, and seeing some of the Great Smokies.
- How we ate and exercised last week: I decided I really didn’t want to do a separate post about our eating and exercise, and thought I could fit something into the Sunday post instead. I am so thankful these days to have a Trader Joe’s nearby – it has made cooking and healthy eating so much easier, especially since it’s just the two of us now. ALDI has helped as well. This past week we ate vegetable pizza; smoked pork sliders with four-bean salad; smoked pork tacos; spinach and artichoke quiche; meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and sautéed broccoli; and a whole bunch of leftovers for both lunches and dinner. I had a Goo Goo Cluster for my dessert on three evenings, and otherwise we enjoyed either a small bowl of Tillamook Peaches & Cream ice cream or some of the blueberry-peach pie I made on Thursday (it was supposed to be a peach pie, but the peaches didn’t fill the pie crust so I added blueberries). We ate a lot of fruit during the week as well, including apples, peaches, blueberries, and bananas. Somewhat cooler weather has meant more walking! Brett regularly gets over 10,000 steps a day walking Kai, and I’ve been joining them now that things are cooling off. So far we’re sticking to the paths and trails around our apartment complex. There’s still lots of room for improvement, but we’re on our way.
- The ways we saved: 1) We finished up our September food shopping in August with a trip to Costco this past week so we could avoid paying sales tax. The total bill at Costco was $150 less than what I was expecting because I still calculate with Hawaii prices on my mind. We’re now stocked up for September other than picking up more produce at some point. 2) Other than Costco, a tank of gas, and our trip to the orchard we had a no-spend week. Gas prices at our Costco are now $3.24 a gallon. 3) We put $2.50 into the change/$1 bill jar. 4) I’d like to say we didn’t throw away any food, but all the produce we had put on the top shelf in our refrigerator one day froze and had to be tossed. Lesson learned though.
- Thinking of good things that happened: 1) M brought back a box of Goo Goo Clusters for me from her trip last weekend. I’m not sure how she knew I like them (more like love them) and while they’re now smaller than I remember they were just as good as I remember. 2) Brett’s sister and husband will be joining us for Christmas! They want to see the girls and our son and the grandkids, so will be driving over from Texas and staying in a nearby hotel. There is going to be a lot of people here for meals and other family gatherings (all smushed into our small apartment) and M and I are already starting to think about and plan for that. 3) I got weighed at the doctor’s office and was happy to learn I gained only eight pounds since we left Hawaii in May. Otherwise everything is good, and medications and other tests have been set up (it’s my year for a colonoscopy – ugh). The vertigo I suffered from in Mexico seem to have been caused by allergies (it’s all but disappeared now) so I know what to do now to take care of that.
We have been horrified and sickened by the discovery of all the stolen top secret (and higher classification) documents at Mar-a-Lago. Watching this unfold is like watching a horror film in some ways. Brett held a top secret clearance with secret access during part of his time in the navy, and if even one of the documents he handled had been left out, even in a locked, secure room, he’d probably still be in jail. Seeing so many top secret and classified documents strewn about and learning how many were taken to Florida has been sickening. We are dreading what we’re going to know by the time this investigation is over, and how much our country and its secrets have been compromised.
That’s a wrap for this week! I hope everyone has been enjoying this Labor Day Weekend, whether that’s spending time with family and friends, or just relaxing with a good book. This long, hot summer is finally coming to an end and before we know it sweater weather will be upon us (and pumpkin spice everything, if that’s your thing). We’ve got lots to look forward to next week, and I hope everyone reading does as well!