It’s a rap

Posted in random on January 26, 2022 by jefferyrn

Well, the stress around the house is better today. Low and behold my husband started putting dishes away this morning. But this afternoon he is back playing with plants on the patio, baby steps. On the work front I was consumed by another bad rollout that cause users a lot of issues this morning. That crisis is finally over. My boss posted this song in chat, “Rollout” by Ludacris. Not being a Rap follower I had a listen. The full lyrics are a bit gangster but I laughed at the line “Now tell me who’s your housekeeper and what you keep in your house?” Maybe I should listen to more Rap songs. “Tell me who’s your weed man, how do you smoke so good?” Okay, maybe not. But I did laugh.

Watch “Ludacris – Rollout (My Business) (Official Music Video)” on YouTube

The stress of working around the house

Posted in random on January 25, 2022 by jefferyrn

There is so much going on and yet nothing is getting done. We did get our fountain today. We paid another installment on the kitchen. Work is going well. Okay, maybe something is getting done. I feel like taking a nap. But I haven’t done anything nap worthy.

Putting stuff away is at a stand still. Even though the upper cabinets are finished and we could start putting dishes away, they still are plied up in my office waiting for someone to get motivated to do so. Excuse #1, we needed a spice rack for the pantry door so the spiced didn’t waste a cupboard next the stove. Excuse # 2, the shelves needed new shelf paper. Excuse #3, the fountain is being installed. All this has happened and still the dishes lay in piles in my office.

I put the bathrooms back together. It is sort of a stand-off on the kitchen. On the one hand, I could jump in and do it. But on the other, my husband would complain about where I put things as not being to his liking. So today is being wasted because now that he has his new toy er ah fountain, he is putzing around outside with plants and stuff. Meanwhile the spice rank lay on the counter uninstalled in the pantry. I offered to do that, but “I don’t know how he wants it”. Yesterday I installed a new set of hooks to replace the towel bar in the bathroom. You would think the world was going to come to an end. I didn’t know what I was doing. It will be crooked. Guess what it is straight and level, unlike me, and my husband has yet to acknowledge that I did it correctly. Instead, he pouted before dinner because I made him wait an hour while I put it up.

I don’t know why I am sharing all of these petty things with you in the blogosphere. Maybe just to show how stupid most arguments are in the first place. Letting go is much less stress. I have a hard time with that one. But waiting him out is equally stressful. I want to just put all this stuff away!

Another example, the floor needed mopping since the workmen left on Friday. He was going to do it. Never happened. Yesterday afternoon while he was outside I mopped the kitchen, front bathroom, and hall. Omg, how was he supposed to get to the garaged and finish laundry? I told him to go sit down. The floor would be dry in 20 minutes. He did, and gave me the silent treatment. This was before I started the hooks in the bathroom project. He’s not talking so I got busy. You heard how that went already.

I know this is a boring piece so I will stop now and share video of our new fountain.

Challenges of going out

Posted in health on January 24, 2022 by jefferyrn

There have been some resent challenges presented by this continuing pandemic. First, I am unable to find an N95 mask. Or I should say one that I am willing to wear. They have some at Lowe’s but they have straps that go around your head. I want the ones with ear loops. Maybe they don’t exist. But I think they do. Second, after complaining about non-mask wears at the local Indian Casino. I was informed that because Indian Casinos are on Federal land they don’t have to comply with local ordinances such as those present by the state of California and the city of Palm Springs.

N95, KN95 and KF94 masks: What's the difference and which should you use? -  CNET
N95 Face Mask with ear loops.

We are planning to go and see Carol Burnett this Saturday. She is appearing at the Agua Caliente Casino in Rancho Mirage (which we call the Bob Hope because that’s the street it is on). I wonder if Carol, who is 88 years old, knows about this exception to the mask policy? I wonder if she might cancel her engagement or somehow be incased is glass during the performance. I was so looking forward to it, thus my hunt of a proper face mask.

Carol Burnett – Appearing at Agua Caliente, Rancho Mirage, January 28th and 29th.

Just because they don’t have to wear them doesn’t mean I am not going to wear one. Or maybe the rules in the theatre will be strictly enforced. Either way I have not been back to “Bob Hope” since this discovery. The night we were there I felt unsafe, surrounded by people mask-less and coughing all over the place. I informed management when we left that I had seen several dozen people roaming around san mask and that is when I learn of the Federal land escape clause.

Agua Caliente, Rancho Mirage

You would think that since most of their people were wiped out by measles in the early days of this country, they would be on-board with all safety measures. And interestingly enough at the beginning of this pandemic they had some of the toughest rules. I think they suffered a great money loss and that has won out over public safety. Are Indian’s Republican’s?

Casino «Augustine Casino», reviews and photos, 84-001 Avenue 54, Coachella,  CA 92236, USA
Augustine Casino, Coachella

“Bob Hope” says they are a five star resort. Image what happens at a two star. You don’t have to because I have been to the low rent Indian Casino in Coachella and they are still following the state rules. They are close to the big golf tournaments we had here over the weekend, not that any of them wondered into the club Coachella, it is mostly Hispanic (98% Hispanic), while La Quinta (79% white) and Indian Wells (92% white) are very much Anglo. I am proud to mingle with people who have the common sense to wear protection. And race has nothing to do with money. There are some rich hombres in there losing money and showing off diamonds just like the “Bob Hope” crowd.

The Kitchen is happening

Posted in random on January 19, 2022 by jefferyrn

They started tearing out our kitchen this morning. Formica countertops, gone. Ceramic sink, gone. Cabinet doors, gone.

Before
In-progress
(I couldn’t get the same angle because they put up a construction barrier between the kitchen and the living room.)

It’s a small kitchen. It was suggested that we lose the pantry and hallway closet to open it up more, but I am not an open concept kind of guy. I don’t need to see the kids while I am cooking a meal. That’s what they always say on those DYI shows. I like storage. Besides it is pretty open. We have no uppers over the breakfast counter.

I am excited to see this done. We will be without a sink for 10 days. That’s how long the countertops are supposed to take. And they sent the wrong doors for the lower cabinets. That will be a 2 week delay. We decided to go ahead and use them in the bathrooms, but it would not look right in the kitchen to have two different types of door, shaker and smooth. We ordered smooth because that is the more modern Palm Springs look. Although if they were all shaker I wouldn’t have minded really.

This is not going to be good for my eating. We started the day with Micky Ds already. Two weeks of eating out, yikes. But I can handle it. I know how to order healthy. I know how to portion control those large orders. Some menu’s even have smaller portions as an option. It will be okay if I work at it and don’t give in to temptation and being tired of eating out all the time. The all or nothing genie is in the bottle for now.

A new kitchen might motivate us to eat at home more often once this is all done. It is a win, win.

Landslide

Posted in health, weight loss with tags on January 17, 2022 by jefferyrn

You have heard of plateaus before, in fact I have given some advice on how to get over them. But what happens when that plateau turns into a total backslide? That is what happened to me, I am ashamed to admit. Oh, I have my excuses all lined up. Extra stress from my mother’s passing, extra stress from the holidays, extra stress from work, but all that has lead to extra pounds, sadly.

I am reminded of that Fleetwood Mac song. Stevie wasn’t singing about breaking a diet, but of a broken heart. Well, that is what I have gone through too.

Fun Sliding GIF
This is how I feel

I took my love, I took it down
I climbed a mountain and I turned around
And I saw my reflection in the snow-covered hills
‘Til the landslide brought me down

Oh, mirror in the sky
What is love?
Can the child within my heart rise above?
Can I sail through the changin’ ocean tides?
Can I handle the seasons of my life?

Landslide – Fleetwood Mac
cat snow GIF
Backsliding

The answer is yes I can with a little effort. It’s okay to backslide. Just get on the right track and move forward. I am happy to say that I did that over the weekend and have recovered some of my losses (weight losses that is). I have been eating more sensibly. We went out for breakfast because my husband wanted blueberry pancakes. I order eggs, fruit, and whole wheat toast. We when to lunch for fast food Mexican. I order a grilled chicken tostada. We went to dinner and I ordered grilled salmon and asparagus. The point is we went to the same places and I made mindful choices, and I didn’t feel left out or deprived in anyway. Well, maybe I am a little depraved.

By the end of the weekend I felt I could have something sweet. I had a strawberries and cream Frappuccino. It was the alternative to chocolate brownie ice cream (490 for the ice cream and 81 for the brownie). Frappuccinos are mostly coffee and ice with some cream added. It has roughly 300 calories. That is a 271 calorie savings, and I usually have two scoops of the ice cream for another 490 calories. So you can see while I was “being bad” I was still being good and it showed on the scales.

As for my landslide, those emotions are still there but I am trying to keep them at bay. No one can replace my mother. She will always be with me in my heart. I can’t eat myself out of that pain. She would want me to get back with the program and continue to improve my health.

Kitchen Refesh

Posted in random on January 14, 2022 by jefferyrn

The kitchen will finally get a much needed fresh look. Starting on Wednesday the cabinets get new faces and doors, new countertop and backsplash, new sink and faucet. It will take us out of the 80’s at long last. Also the bathroom counters, sinks and faucets are getting replaced and the vanities are getting refaced and new doors. Seems we had to buy two slabs of counter stuff and there was enough to do the bathrooms too.

This is what we had when we moved in six month ago. We have already changed the appliances. (Who knew it took 3 months to get a dishwasher?) It looks okay in the picture because you can’t see the messed up doors and stained countertops. (Or hear the hinges creak on the dishwasher.) I am happy see this gone. We are keeping the flooring as it runs through out the house. Oh and we had gas put in for our new gas range. (Plumbers are expensive.)

The challenge is now we have to empty the cupboards before they can start. Oh joy, has it been six months since I put all that stuff away the first time? My office has become the storage room for all things kitchen. The first time I put all of it away because my husband was out of town for a few days retrieving our second car from Reno. Now he is finding things he didn’t know we still had. Obviously, I was hiding them from him. This is a good thing. Maybe some of this stuff can go, and I don’t mean back into the kitchen.

It is exciting, and worrisome at the same time. They promise to leave us one sink to brush our teeth. The cabinets take 3 days, but the counters won’t go back for 2 weeks, so no plumbing either. Oh darn, I guess we will have to eat out.

The neighbor’s cabinets were painted before she moved in, but that is not so good. The paint chips and you still have the old hardware. Several of our doors don’t close properly and we are constantly banging our heads. The new ones will be slick white on the top and a beige woodgrain on the bottoms. The handles are called Champaign. The counter will be an off white quartz that is being fabricated for us, hence the 2 week wait. They want to take exact measurements after the demo is complete. We opted for a subway tile backsplash in high gloss. I think the color is also beige but I picked so long ago it will be a surprise. There is no backsplash now except for that countertop molding. By next Friday I should have pictures of the progress.

Memories

Posted in health, weight loss with tags , on January 13, 2022 by jefferyrn

My partner has informed me that my short-term memory is deteriorating. My first thought is that I am getting old and that is a natural thing. It could also be a side affect of some of my medications. There are many supplements advertised that are supposed to help with memory loss. The big problem is that most of them are unproven and have no FDA required regulations for purity of content, etc.

Superfoods To Cut Alzheimer's Risk And Improve Memory

Like losing weight, there really is no magic pill to get you memory back. There is some proven science that diet and exercise help with both. Eating fatty fish like salmon, for example, is full of Omega-3 and is supposed to be a memory enhancer. How much one should take and whether your body can truly take advantage of this from a supplement verse the food itself is not proven.

DOWNLOAD MP3: Sia – Unstoppable - Jamsbase
Sia – Unstoppable

There is something called the “MIND Diet”. It is basically the Mediterranean diet and the DASH diet in a mashup. Kind of like a Sia remix of “Unstoppable” and Katy Perry’s “Roar”. The Mediterranean diet is based on a lot of fish eating. The DASH is for hypertension and focuses on fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean meats. This is basically just healthy eating at it’s best. According to the hype on this even if you don’t follow it to the letter you can reduce your risk by as much as 35 percent of developing Alzheimer’s.

Here are the 10 basics of the MIND diet:

1. Make sure to eat green leafy vegetables at least six times a week and other vegetables at least once a day.

2. Eat nuts at least five times a week.

3. Limit pastries or sweets to five times a week.

4. Make sure to have less than four servings of red meat each week.

5. Consume beans more than three times every week.

6. Eat at least three servings of whole grains every day.

7. Make sure to have poultry and berries at least twice a week.

8. Limit fried or fast food, as well as any cheese serving, to less than once a week.

9. Eat fish at least once a week.

10. Make sure to cook mainly with olive oil, and limit butter and margarine to less than a tablespoon per day.

By Phoebe Ochman, Chapters of Life Blog

I find this quite simple and doable. It is very similar to Noom which I have been following, although not to the letter, for almost a year now. But I need to step back and look at my week. Meal planning is what will make this work.

Diabetes Meal Planning | CDC
This is so hard. But it makes it easier in the long run. More on how to do this in a future post.

Mood walking

Posted in health, weight loss with tags , , on January 12, 2022 by jefferyrn

It is time for a mood change. Being active has a direct affect on one’s mood. Exercise produces endorphins, which are “feel good” hormones that help to create the powerful, confident, and happy post-workout feeling. Some of these endorphins also contribute to decreased stress levels. Who doesn’t want that?

For example, my husband came into my office to ask me a question yesterday. We looked something up on the internet. I don’t remember now what it was truly about, but my Teams Chat was open and he read some comments I made to a friend at work. He was immediately offend and said “You know you can share those things with me.” I told him I had already done so. He left in a huff and went for his morning walk. When he came back it was like nothing had transpired. The stress of the morning was gone, and I didn’t have to exercise, he did. Isn’t that marvelous?

The grounds here are beautiful.

To be fair, I am not the nicest person to be around in the mornings. I can be short, which often translates to being rude or mean. A walk would do me good. To that end I am going to plan a walk around this place with or without husband everyday, to clear air, and my head. It also burns a few calories, so it can contribute to future happiness as well with weight loss.

When you think of exercise, what you really want is movement. This doesn’t require a gym or fancy equipment. It does require getting up and doing something, anything really. Housework can give you a workout. Any chores you do will have a physical benefit as long as they don’t involve sitting in front of the computer.

Latest Headphone Technology in 2020: Discussed - Headphones Addict
I like the noise cancelling affects of a full headset.

And if you are stuck on that conference call, unless you are presenting, get up and walk around. Wireless headsets are a great way to get moving. I don’t do this enough. Remember the mute button though. We don’t want to entertain meeting goer with sounds of dogs barking, children crying or noises made in the bathroom, haven forbid.

Your Wireless Earbuds Are Trash (Eventually) | Wirecutter
But some people prefer the minimalist approach.

Enough already

Posted in random on January 11, 2022 by jefferyrn

Sorry for this post in advance. I am about to rant on about nothing really. My sister is driving me crazy. There is paperwork that needs to be sent in to the courts. There is a house that needs to be cleaned and put up for sale. There are sad memories that keep me up at night. My sister is a procrastinator and yet as the eldest she is the executor of my mothers estate, or so she will be named if I can ever get her to file all the paperwork with the court.

It has been a struggle for both of us. I understand that she lost a husband only month before our mothers passing. But all of this is now 3 months in the past. I spared her having to go to the hospital and pull the plug and say good my to mom. She never went to the hospital for her husband because she was not vaccinated. She had to do it all over the phone. Mom called me the night she went into the hospital and said she had made me the emergency contact because she didn’t think my sister could handle it.

So here we are today. My sister has had this paperwork since Christmas Eve. I know this because the documents she asked me to sign were date as such. She tried filing on her own but the court rejected it. So she hired a consultant who built this package we needed to sign and file with the court.

It barely happened yesterday. It was one excuse after another. I fell asleep after you called. My son called. The neighbor called. I am doing it now. The internet went down till 10 pm. She might have just said the dog ate her homework.

I wake up at night with my CPAP mask on and I panic. The memories of my mother in the hospital all hooked up to those machines. Sometimes I have to take the mask off.

My husband is after me constantly. Prodding me to get my sister on the phone. Complaining because I share things in a text with someone at work that I should be sharing with him. He is out for a walk now.

Okay this is enough!

Phone home – the answer is blowing in the wind

Posted in family with tags , on January 7, 2022 by jefferyrn

It’s Friday. Normally I would call my mom this afternoon and catch up on things. She was my connection to the family. Now I call my sister. It is not quite the same. She is not as connected to what is happening. I call her to get things moving along. She is the executor of my mother’s estate, being the eldest, if for no other reason.

There is an interesting concept about phoning the dead. It seems phone booths connected to nothing really, are cropping up everywhere. Like this on in Provincetown.

Provincetown's "Phone on the Wind" contributors (from left) Jody Johnson, Janine Evers, Dawn Walsh and Amy Kandall at the new phone booth at 46 Bradford St. in Provincetown, constructed by artist Bob Bailey, with donated materials and work from others as well. [BANNER STAFF PHOTOS BY VINCENT GUADAZNO]
Calling mom from this phone might be the answer.

PROVINCETOWN — You may have noticed the new phone booth on the front lawn of Provincetown Commons.

It’s there for you to make a call, according to the creators.

But not to the living.

The phone booth is for making calls to the dead.

“It has nothing to do with anybody or anything except you and your family or whoever you want to speak to,” said sculptor Bob Bailey, who constructed the booth as part of a community art project with fellow artists and end-of-life doula Dawn Walsh of Provincetown.

Of course, this is not the first one of it’s kind. I saw a story on Sunday Morning about one attached to a tree in the woods. The line goes nowhere, but some how it is a comfort to those who come and place the call, telling their loved ones things they needed to say but it is no longer possible in the real world. Often there is crying, laughter, and joy. It is a relief of some grieving that has build up inside and needs an outlet.

Here is one in the woods outside Olympia, Washington:

Telephone of the wind

In a back corner of an Olympia, Washington park, hangs a disconnected rotary phone. From it, people who need to talk to someone who is no longer there, can do so from the solitude of the wooded surroundings.

The Telephone of the Wind in Olympia was created by a Washington-area travel journalist, Corey Dembeck.

“I heard the NPR story about the Telephone of the Wind in Japan a few years ago. My mom passed away a few years before that. I thought I could use something like that here. But I didn’t really have any overwhelming desire to make one. This year (2020) was tough. In the space of a year, I had my two labradors pass away, my father, my grandfather, and I don’t think I really coped with their losses. When my friends’ four-year-old daughter passed away, I knew the phone needed to be up.”

Dembeck dedicated the phone to Joelle Rose Sylvester and had it installed by noon the day he heard she’d died.

He later placed the first “call” to his mother.

“It’s a little awkward at first, but I walked away, feeling better. It’s almost therapeutic. I picked up the phone and dialed some random numbers. At first, you feel kind of stupid, but then you start talking and the emotions just kind of come out in a way that you didn’t really expect. I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t have anything prepared, so I said, ‘Hi,’ and gave her some recent updates on my life,” he told Seattle Refined.

The sign Dembeck posted the day his daughter’s friend died best explains the power of the project, “This phone is for everyone who lost a loved one. The phone is an outlet for those who have messages to share with their lost friends and family. It is a phone for memories and saying the goodbyes you never got to say.”

BY REBECCA ROBERTS GALLOWAY | FEB 12, 2021

And in Japan is one of the earliest such devices:

Japan's Tsunami Survivors Call Lost Loves on the 'Phone of the Wind'
Tsunami phone

In the small town of Otsuchi in northern Japan, 2,000 residents were lost in the tsunami in 2011.

One resident, who had already been grieving his cousin before the tsunami hit, had the idea of placing an old phone booth at the bottom of his garden with a disconnected rotary phone.

He would ring his cousin’s number and his words would “be carried on the wind” as he spoke to him.

After the tsunami hit, and word about the wind phone spread, many more people have come to Otsuchi in Iwate prefecture, to call those they have lost.

Maybe we need one of these out on our patio. I have an old phone in the closet. I could mount it on the wall next to our fountain and call my mom to wish her a happy Friday.