Sunday, May 21, 2017

May: Week 3

Not as productive this week but still making progress. We also took my FIL and Great-Aunt out to lunch.
  • Booked a dog groomer and visited with dog to get acquainted
  • 1 step left on HVAC installation: Passed the duct testing so were able to schedule the inspection for Monday
  • Scheduled car passenger side air bag replacement under recall
  • Scheduled carpet and upholstery cleaning 
  • Decided what mattresses to purchase as well as frames, sheets, blankets, comforter - yikes.
  • Bought pajamas, sunglasses & purse - returned too large rash guard
  • Bought paint for master bedroom feature wall (what were they thinking - the color really clashes!) and ceilings that are painted dark beige and make them feel lower than they are.
  • Found "shadow gray" towels for bathrooms. We've got to modernize that wall color & tile. 
  • Actually hung one piece of art.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

My good value shopping mojo is working

Just a note to say that we continue to be busy between furnishing the house, visiting family, getting out and about even if only for errands and general daily life.

I am thrilled that we have moved on to starting to fill in the furnishing gaps in our home. We even hung a picture to fill in a big gap over the kitchen sink. My Dad created this landscape drawing with pastels and it makes me happy to have it where I can enjoy it many times a day.

So that shopping mojo:

Today we went to an organic mattress store and found a very viable option and one I really love that is not viable unless you think about it being $1/day over 10 years LOL. Learned a lot about current mattress construction. Then we swung by Kohl's with a coupon and the Memorial Day sales in full swing and picked up much needed new bath towels and optimistically bought a mattress pad for the yet to be purchased king sized bed. We had been to lunch with my FIL and great aunt and didn't have the energy to decide on sheets, comforter, etc. Perhaps next week.

Yesterday I returned an online order that was too large and found at great sale prices 3 items on my clothing purchase list: lightweight pajamas, sunglasses and a purse.

Hope this streak continues!

Do you have any luck shopping sales? Do you work from a list and stick to it?

PS. Got my letter from Social Security saying what my monthly payments will be when I start collecting in September when I turn 68. Glad I am not having to live on that amount and realize it is higher than many people receive so I am very fortunate indeed.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Preparing for emergencies caused by nature

In our previous home the main nature caused potential emergencies were tornadoes and power outages due to falling tree limbs, ice or wind. Pretty simple to prepare for so we stocked up on water, food that could be eaten cold and emergency lights. We also were clear where in the basement to huddle and paid attention to tornado watches and listened for the siren nearby.

In S. Cal it is a bit different - earthquakes being the big one to prepare for. However there can be "forest" fires, mudslides, floods, etc. Having been to this rodeo before I know it is important to be prepared to get by on your own for at least a week with no utilities, stores out of food, gas stations not operating or out of gas and ATMs not working. You also need to have "bug out" bags for each person and pet in the car and/or home. In our case since we have one car that could be gone there needs to be something at home too.

I'm fortunate that the community has a emergency response group and a ham radio tower and operators. That would help but its a community of about 3,500 people all over 55 with an average age of 72. We need to be prepared to help ourselves and others.

Enter this thorough website that the state of CA offers. I think it could be adapted to any emergency situation if you are interested in checking or improving your preparedness. Be Prepared - Individuals and Families. I like Arizona's website too: Just in Case

So what have I done in the month since we moved? Nothing but buy a couple of gallons of water.

Today I looked up the list of what to have on hand and got started with upping our water and non-perishable food supplies.

(1) Water @ a minimum of 1 gallon per person per day for a minimum of 3 days. Add in some for the dog.
- We now have six gallons and I will keep stocking up until we have at least 15. I'll also look into a good water filtering system such as is used for camping to make non-potable water drinkable.

2) Food for at least 3 days including dog food. Pick foods that require no refrigeration, preparation or cooking and little or no water added. Make sure to have a can opener, paper plates, plastic cups and silverware, etc. Canned goods such as beans, fruit, & tuna, peanut butter, dry cereal, crackers, protein or fruit bars, nuts, canned juices, etc. I read a suggestion somewhere to actually make up a 3 - 7 day meal plan with calorie counts to make sure you have the right foods stored. Good idea.

Here is a great list of non-perishables to have on hand. Some do require the ability to heat water so take that into account. Not a good idea when gas lines many have ruptured during an earthquake but helpful in other circumstances perhaps. Disaster foods

- We now have a few extra cans of beans, fruit & tuna as well as disposable plates, etc. I will make sure to always have extras of the other items on hand as well as adding more canned goods.

Next on the list is a first aid kit. Will work on that next week and keep going down the list.

Are you prepared?

Monday, May 15, 2017

May: Week 2

Happy Mother's Day! I'm off to spend part of the day with my older son and DIL and granddog plus my own dog. I feel very lucky to be able to do that. Hubby is out of town doing his show up at work part of working remotely so we have them all to ourselves.

I've been pretty busy this past week. Not in the plans but on Wednesday I took hubby to the train station (train, planes, train or Lyftt for him), came home and took the dog for a walk. She stepped on a bee and had a thankfully non-life threatening reaction to the venom. Vomit and poop all over the bedroom carpet which I guess we will be getting cleaned after all. I was concerned about dehydration since she wasn't drinking water so off to the vet for 2 shots, 2 med and re-hydration.

How do we keep this from happening again? I didn't get any helpful advice from people I talked to but learned the vomiting was typical and some dogs go into anphylactic shock so we were lucky it was just money and carpet cleaning.

She is feeling well now it seems and did very well driving to my son's and spending the afternoon with them and their dog.

I managed to buy a few things on our finish furnishing the house list and got good value/prices on all - small yard waste trash can, bath trash can, 4 glasses and 2 candles (we didn't move ours). I also went to the HOA Spring Cleaning sale and bought myself a fun bracelet for a big $5.

Checking off my to do list:
  • Get refrigerator water filter and ice maker fixed
  • Make an eye exam appointment
  • Routine Vet appointment 5/9; decide if staying with this vet or switching to one nearer us.
  • Get recommendations for groomer and boarding
  • Get CA driver's licenses, register car and get new HOA car sticker. Cancel GA car registration.
  • Send in homeowner's property tax exemption form.
  • Recycle old printer
  • Get SS form to prove have had health insurance coverage
  • Apply online for SS
  • Connect with nephew who lives in San Diego
  • Mother's Day with son & DIL
  • Join Women's Club (and attended an interesting talk)
  • May planned clothing purchases: swim rash guard/sun guard long sleeve top & an unplanned purchase of bead and leather bracelet

Saturday, May 13, 2017

A lovely Saturday

First a stop at the HOA Spring Cleaning sale where I found this fun bracelet for $5 but nothing on my list LOL.

The list was taken care of at Target, Ross and Home Depot where I picked up things we needed for the house. Slowly we are filling in the gaps.

A walk in the lovely weather and then wine on our patio with my dog buddy. Nice.

Monday, May 8, 2017

May: Week 1

We had to remind ourselves last night that we only arrived in our new home on April 19th and moved in on April 20th! Lots accomplished although I can't seem to list much for this past week.

Getting settled into our home has mostly taken priority over exercise and enjoyment. That will need to change soon. So what did we accomplish?

  • Decided not to paint all the walls  Decision: Paint feature wall & 3 dark ceilings; touch up wall paint; we will do it ourselves so we have now saved $3,000 which pays for the new water heater and golf clubs for my husband.
  • Unpacked some art work and a few more boxes; started clearing out the garage by putting all the boxes we are saving for a cousin's move into the garage attic.
  • Bought and set up a new multi-function printer. We went with a more expensive Brother one as the ink costs are much less over the expected lifetime.
  • Had some fun and personal time. Hubby bought a set of golf clubs and tried out the 9 hole course. We took some walks together and alone. I went to a musical performance and to the library. 
  • We had brunch in Santa Barbara with our son, DIL and 5 mo old granddaughter as they were there for an event on her side - happy day.
  • Later that day we had dinner at a restaurant on the Ventura pier with a friend who was in town from Atlanta.