Monday, September 30, 2013

I'm Back from The Middle of Nowhere!

I am finally back folks.
I know you all missed me terribly. 8-))

The trip went well and a good time was had by all.
I wish we had more time there since 2 of the 3 days was an all-day drive.
The fun part in the middle went by much too quickly.

The weather was great all 3 days.....sunny and warm-ish but not too hot.
Which is a good thing since the Reunion is held outside on the house grounds.

And my foot/leg suddenly felt much better by Saturday.  We stopped a few times on the way down Friday to break up the car ride, and for awhile I sat on the back bench seat with my leg elevated.  I walked through Walmart on Friday as we needed to pick up a few things and I felt the foot was better then(though it wore me out for the day)but by Saturday morning the foot was feeling 80% well.  My brother and sister in-law had brought a wheelchair they have for me to use on Saturday but it turned out I did aok without it.  Besides the small cement patio area they would have had a hard time pushing me around on the grass as it's not exactly flat there, so it's a good thing I was able to walk some.  I navigated ok with my cane and the folding chairs were fine for me to use plus they had the 5 large wooden rocking(and a small table I could put my foot up on)that are usually on the back porch out for folks to use and I parked myself in one of those for awhile.
Heck, I even walked up to the second floor to take a peek around at the work that they've done upstairs in the house(and the rooms that still need work).  I hadn't been inside the house since my great grandmother moved out of there in the mid 1960's. 

The Reunion day went way too fast.  I connected with a few folks but there were so many more there that I didn't even get a chance to introduce myself to.  Many of them left after only a couple of hours so the die-hards(us and a few of my mother's cousins)sat until about 4:30pm just visiting.
I didn't get nearly as many photos has I had wanted to at the Reunion or of the entire trip.  sigh.
And I didn't take a single horrendous video either.....I know, some of you out there are relieved about that one. lolz

I didn't get as many photos taken as I wanted to overall.
My brother took my camera with him when he went off on Saturday afternoon to my mom's property to get some photos there for me.  It's a long walk from the road and heavily forested so there was no way I was going to be able to get back there myself by foot(and nobody would have been able to wheelchair me back there either).  So I gave him the camera which meant I didn't have it to take photos from about 2pm on.

We had dinner after the Reunion with my mother's cousin and her husband from her Harper/Tucker side of the family at the pizza/Italian joint down the road from the motel.  That was a good visit too, plus mom's cousin helped me ID those mystery people in the photos I have which I had posted about in August of 2012 HERE.
This information also helped me break down a brick wall this morning on my Tucker ancestral line.

I'll post more about my trip later this week.  #2 Son has my camera cord so I can't even download my photos until I get that back from him.

Gary the workman is here from the handyman company and working on the baseboard and the crown mouldings.  I am hoping he can finish this up today so we can get moving on these rooms to get them inhabitable asap.

I'm off to go work on the end of the month budget/bills accounting now.  September will NOT be pretty...... 8-(

Sluggy


 

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Saturay Night Party!

Here's something fun for a Saturday night.

So who do you think won the lip sync off?

We're partying our a$$es off here in Keysville, VA tonight!
Woohoo......

Sluggy

Friday, September 27, 2013

Week 4 of the Boring Blog Box Giveaway.....Last Week to Enter!

Here's how it works if you are new here.......
 
I put things in the box(mostly what I have gotten for free or almost free)each week and when the box is filled we draw a winner from all the entries received.

Here is what went into the Box today............something for your pitts, your hair, your nails,  your tummy & your d├ęcor......

 
 
1.  1 small Dove Deodorant stick
2.  1 bottle of Magnetix nail polish
3.  1 small bottole of Pantene conditioner
4.  1 bag of Brach's Fall Harvest Mix(candy corn and such)
5.  1 winged Gargoyle figurine for your Halloween decorating
 
 
 
If this is your first time, please go read all the rules for these Giveaways HERE.  *As always, if you are located outside the US, you CAN enter and win but weight restrictions/shipping costs may mean your prize box will contain less items.*

***Time to enter.....You can enter on this Giveaway post until I close this post to entries.
This is the last post for this Giveaway.  You have until Friday, October 4th, at 11:59pm to enter.  The Giveaway will be closed at that time and a winner selected from all the valid entries received by that date/time.

1 entry per person per day on THIS POST.
Leave your name/email address and a COMMENT on this post.  

This week I want to hear about if/how you celebrate Halloween.  Do you dress up on Oct. 31st whether or not you are going to a party?
And if you give out candy/treats on Halloween, what do you like to give?

I use to get those full sized candy bars for a good price at the restaurant supply store so my house use to be very popular for Trick or Treaters.  This year I think we'll scale back but I am not sure what we will give out yet.....I still have a few weeks to work that out.
 
 
You can come directly to this blog post or find it through the link on the right side bar to leave 1 comment per day.  The current Giveaway Post will be linked right at the top of the side bar.

Please NOTE--You MUST be a follower to enter the Giveaway.  If you aren't one, just click on the "Follow" button on the right hand side of my blog to become a follower.

There are 2 ways to get 2 EXTRA entries on this and each new Giveaway Post besides the daily comment.......

1. Put my blog on your blog's Blogroll.  Leave an extra comment for this entry on THIS POST with the URL of your blog so I can go check it out. **If I'm already on your Blogroll, say so in an extra entry comment once each week of this giveaway.
2.  Blog about this Giveaway on your blog with a link to this post.  Leave an extra comment for this entry on THIS POST with a link to your blog post so I can go view it.  You can do this extra entry once each week of this giveaway.
 
Two more weeks/posts after this and the box will be full and ready to pick a winner.

Any questions?  Just email me.

Happy Entering!! 

Sluggy

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Going Back to the Old Home Place

It hasn't been the best of days here lately.
Nothing earth shattering just the blasted foot not healing.  Actually on Wednesday it was worse again so I was scared of having to go back to the hospital so I babied it extra and Thursday it was better.
But I am still nowhere near being able to do anything I use to do.

Hubs was out of town for 2 days so even less got done around here.  And little things were blowing up while he was gone and I just couldn't physically take care of things.
Sigh.

And now the Chihuahua is sick.  I noticed her eye was closed today and a bit swollen and then pus started coming out of it.
And we are going to the reunion tomorrow so she's going to have to wait until Monday to go to the vet.  If it gets worse while we are gone, #2 Son can take her to the ER vet down the road but still, that's another worry on my mind.

We had trouble booking a motel room for this reunion.
The location is so off the beaten path that there is not a chain motel/hotel for 50 miles in any direction.  The only motel is an old family run one in the next town over which has been there from before I was on this Earth.  If they had a listing, words like "old" and "dumpy" would be the highlights for it. lol

With my foot condition I put off making a reservation until last week as I still wasn't convinced we'd be going.
In between the time I first found their website and 800-number and last week, they stopped paying for the website and it disappeared.  And the 800-number was disconnected.
Great.


But we found the local number and yes, they are still in business so if I don't get back online(of course there is no WI-FI there!)by next Monday, someone please come looking for me in Keysville, VA.  Hopefully the motel clerk is not a chap named Norman with a penchant for bird taxidermy.....


I am thinking I'll need a wheelchair at the reunion since it's outside and I can't stand for long periods of time and they'll probably just have folding chairs strewn about the place. 

Trying to find a loan or rental of a wheelchair has proven difficult.  The place that loans them out for free for short periods of time never returned the message I left(figures)and the one place that rents them is all the way on the other side of Wilkes-Barre and while I could have driven myself there, I couldn't have gotten myself from the car into the store and back again.

But luckily, my sister in-law has one for her mother, who won't be needing it this weekend, so they are bringing it for me to use on Saturday.  Bless there little old hearts......

I also had to make a dish to bring to this shindig.  Having to stay over on Friday night meant I had to make something today that would keep with possibly not being refrigerated the full time beforehand.
So I settled on my mother's Pineapple Salsa recipe and Tortilla Chips.  The salsa will stay cold enough for the ride down in a small cooler and if there is no dorm sized fridge in the motel room, we can pack ice from the motel into the cooler and keep it chilled overnight.  Hubs can run into a local grocery store on the way down tomorrow or Saturday morning for the tortilla chips and I can take a big plastic bowl to put them in.
This dish got selected also because it was something I could make while seated at the kitchen table after I had Hubs gather all the ingredients.

Now I just have to pack and get to bed.  Tomorrow I'll attempt a shower as I don't want to offend Hubs on the ride down.

I'm nervous as hell because besides my brother and his wife, I am not going to know a soul at this thing.  I had hoped to bring the computer and be able to get online to access my Ancestry files and tree while there so I can engage whomever is interested in the family genealogy, but I doubt that they have broadband or dial-up at the plantation house and I don't have satellite internet.

So I am bringing a photo album of pictures and I'll take my camera, a pen and a notebook and hopefully will make some meaningful family connections.

I am nervous and sort of depressed at the moment so I have to try to get my spirits up before we get to this party so I am not a downer when I arrive......I am sure there will be plenty of time to BECOME a downer once the festivities get going. lolz

At least I have my painkillers and I'll take a little bit of "adult beverage" since if I remember correctly this county is semi-dry(meaning restaurants can sell liquor by the drink, but not stores by the bottle)and so, so backwards and still dwelling in the early 1900's.
I hope my Time Machine begins me back to 2013 by Monday.....



Wish me luck!

Sluggy
 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

This Week on the Dining Table

The "Still Hobbling Around" Edition......

 
Look at all those ripe tomatoes still on my plants!  I wish I could get out there and pick them so I can can them.....sigh.....

 Here's what was planned last week--

Sunday--Leftovers (I had my leftover Chinese Food.)
Monday--Leftover London Broil cut thin for beef hoagies(with caramelized onions and melted provolone cheese), stir fried Green Beans
Tuesday--Roasted Chicken with Onions & Carrots, Stuffing(for the menfolk), Cranberry "Glop"
Wednesday--Frozen Pizzas(I can have a small piece), Caprese Salad
Thursday--Broccoli Casserole, maybe Pork chops if I can dig them out, Applesauce
Friday--no clue but will probably involve tomatoes and/or green beans lolz
Saturday--ditto

And here's what actually got eaten--

Sunday--Leftovers (I had my leftover Chinese Food.)
Monday--Leftover London Broil cut thin for beef hoagies(with caramelized onions and melted provolone cheese), stir fried Green Beans
Tuesday--Roasted Chicken with Onions & Carrots, Stuffing(for the menfolk), Cranberry "Glop"
Wednesday--Frozen Pizzas(I can have a small piece)
Thursday--I was the only one home for dinner so I made a piece of fish, and green beans.
Friday--BLTs, yet again....lol and Broccoli Casserole
Saturday--Hubs had leftover chicken and broccoli casserole, I had a turkey sandwich and salad.

Through Wednesday was on plan and then the wheels flew off the bus. lol  We didn't get take-out or spend on more groceries at that point, deciding instead to work on eating some leftover and surplus tomatoes and beans and going to the freezer/stockpile to see what we could find.   It all worked out for the best. 8-)

  
As for food spending last week.....I spent $100.86 on $197.03 worth of groceries at 2 stores and the farm stand.  Actually Hubs spent the $ as I was in no shape to go shopping(except for riding out to the farm).  I have $193.67 remaining of my $400 September food budget with 6 days to go in the month.

As for food waste, nothing last week. 8-))
Leftovers going into this week--still more green beans and tomatoes from the garden.

Here's this week's meal plan---
 
Sunday--Pork Chops(freezer), Green Beans(garden), leftover Stuffing, Applesauce(from stockpile)
Monday--Dinner at TGIFridays(I had an appetizer and water, Hubs had a burger and iced tea.)
Tuesday--Roast Chicken(freezer), Brussel Sprouts(freezer), leftover Applesauce
Wednesday--Halushki(noodles from stockpile, cabbage from farm stand) with Bacon(freezer)
Thursday--Rigatoni w/Meat Sauce(meat from freezer/pasta from stockpile/sauce made from stockpile ingredients), some veggie from the freezer OR Fend for Yourself-not sure which yet
Friday--No plan yet, eating out
Saturday--My brother will probably want to eat at a pizza joint so not sure what I'll get there.

On the shopping list......I cooked a chicken breast for lunchmeat so no deli meat will be bought this week.  What I need to buy to prepare the meals above are a head of cabbage(picked up already at the farm stand).  That's it as I have everything else either in the stockpile or freezer.  I do need to pick up some staples we are out of like cornstarch, vinegar(on sale this week), yogurts for me(on sale this week), milk and a bag of dog kibble.  I'm still in no position to do a full-on grocery shop so I don't foresee spending more than $25 at the grocery store this week.

That's what's appearing on the kitchen table this week here at Chez Sluggy. 
  
 What's getting fixed and served at your house this week?

Sluggy

Monday, September 23, 2013

Online Shopping.....Got Me Some Deals!

Last weekend, while I was stuck sitting or laying around the house due to my foot I did some online shopping.


#2 Son needed new clothes as I hadn't bought him any since getting him some cargo shorts in the Spring.  He hadn't grown much but all his duds were wearing out.
So I sat him down last weekend on the edge of my bed and made him pick out stuff.  I must say that this method is much easier than trying to take him to the store and wait for him to point at something and grunt at me.  8-)

So we shopped and I added a couple of items in the old shopping basket for myself and I checked out virtually.

Here's what we got.....

3 x Cargo Pants  Reg. $52.00 pr.  on sale $29.99 pr.
2 x Band T-Shirts  Reg. $20.00 ea.  on sale $14.99 ea.
1 x Henley thermal Shirt  Reg. $25.00  on sale $14.99
2 x L/S T-Shirt  Reg. $20.00 ea.  on sale $9.99 ea.
1 x Women's Nightgown Reg. $36.00  on sale $20.99
1 x Women's Sweater  Reg. $40.00  on sale $28.00

Regular retail total was $337.00
Sale subtotal was $203.91

I had a code for an additional 25% off which brought the total down another $50.98 so my total was $152.93.  (The total for #2's stuff was $116.19.)

I got free shipping because the total was over $75 AND I got $30 in Kohl's Cash, so I'll get another $30 worth of clothing for free.

Then #2 Son couldn't wait for these clothes to arrive so he went up to Kohl's and spent another $120 something on 2 more pairs of pants, 3 more shirts and a jacket.  He got some good deals but he didn't get the 25% off I got online....sigh.
And he earned another $20 in Kohl's Cash so now I have $50 in that script to get him some more garments.  I'll probably pick up some underwear and socks and who know what else for him.

So around $236 for a complete wardrobe for the teen.
Not too bad for things he needed.
And we are good now on clothes for him until Summer weather 2014.

Sluggy

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Successful Weekend

I'm feeling a bit better today(Sunday).
If the foot continues to improve(being able to put weight on it)it is looking like we'll get to the Baker/Vassar Family Reunion 2013 next Saturday.
Now I just have to get copies made of some photos I want to bring with me.  Photos I need help identifying persons pictured on them.  Plus a photo of the old home place that I don't believe anyone else has seen(or has in their possession).

We needed to get 2 things crossed off the "To Do" List this weekend.
#1 was to finish getting all the coats of paint on the baseboard moulding strips.
And that one got crossed off this afternoon when Hubs finished the quarter round strips.


We are now set for the workmen to come back a week from tomorrow(Monday)and cut/install all the crown and baseboard mouldings.
Then to touch up the wall paint we redid and we are ready to decorate, buy furniture and hang curtains.

#2 on the list had to be completed this weekend, because next weekend we can't do this project, and by the following weekend(in October), it would just be too late for the task.

The project is to make and can my Family Secret Pepper Relish Recipe.
It calls for lots and lots of red bell peppers and if you end up having to purchase those at the grocery store it's ridiculously expensive!  So I only make this relish if I can get red bells for cheap, which means either growing them yourself(I've never been able to grow enough of them successfully in a season to have enough to make a batch of the relish)or you can buy them straight from a farmer.  I know of one local farm that grows this variety and they ripen in early September here so you have to time your relish making with the short window of ripe opportunity.  And you have to hope other farm stand customers don't buy them all before you get there!

This window of time is usually the 2-4th weekend of September.
This weekend was weekend #3 so prime season.
So we hit the farm stand yesterday.


 The little pumpkins were already out in bins. In a week or two their Pumpkin Patch will be in full swing.  I hope to get back for pumpkins in October.  I don't have room for lots of puree in my freezer but I can get a few gourds.....


Here is an artsy shot I took....


A close-up of a bin of larger pumpkins.  I may be the whitest woman on Earth but those albinos are the whitest pumpkins on Earth.......snort


And for Tanner, a photo of her farm "buddy"......I know you miss her......lol


I didn't want a shot of these people but they just kept getting in my way, both while trying to get photos of the critters and while trying to get veggies at the stand.  Honestly, they were obviously "city slickers" and I could have sworn from the way they talked and the way they acted that they were from New York or Jersey(sorry if you are from NY or NJ).  They were obnoxious, pushy and acted like they were the center of the universe.  You know, the stereotypical "goombah"....

Was I surprised that when we left I noticed that their car at PA plates. lol  Obviously transplants.  How I wish they'd "go home".  We don't need behavior like this in PA(got enough of it already).  NYers who know how to behave in public are appreciated and welcomed. 8-)


 
Another shot of one of Tanner's "stubborn" buddies scratching an itch on the fence......


And a gratuitous chicken porn shot for Linda .......I swear this chicken refused to show her face.  Every time I hoisted the camera to my face, she turned her backend to me.  Is this how a chicken gives "the finger"? lolz



A  shot on the way home of the now clear cut cornfields.   Corn season is long gone......sniff......


Saturday afternoon I began the relish making process.

Some of the spoils of our farm stand excursion........


We got 26 peppers(a combination of green and red and many that were both green and red)for $6.00
And these were BIG peppers, not the tiny things you get in the grocery store.  Peppers here run regularly $3.49 or higher per lb.  Even on sale at .99¢ per lb. these peppers would have costs me $26.00!  Holy bell pepper Batman, that's way too much to spend on only 1 ingredient for relish!!
 
Prepping the veggies.......




After going through the food processor and a good deal of hand chopping by moi we got this......


After salting and draining and making the sauce we jarred the relish up and put them into the canner.....


And after 30 minutes of boiling(x 3 since w couldn't fit all the jars in), we ended up with this......


We got 308 ounces of relish, or 2 gallons, 1 quart, 1 pint and 4 ounces.  8-)


All told 308 ounces of relish cost me $15.75 for the ingredients(not counting any jars I had to buy).

Peppers             $6
Onions              $4
Sugar                $3
Secret Ingredient  FREE ;-)
Vinegar           .75¢
Mustard Seeds  $1
Celery Seeds     $1

That comes out to approx. .61¢ per 12 oz. jar.
Add another .67¢ for the jar if I had to buy it.

A good price for something homemade.

My sister in-law is addicted to this stuff.  She puts it in/on everything and even eats it out of the jar with a spoon.
I should rename this stuff  "Crack Relish".   lolz

I'm calling the weekend a success since we got both of our Projects completed.

So what's on your plate this weekend?

Sluggy


 

Friday, September 20, 2013

Feeling Better Until I Think About Money

Well I lied it seems about stopping giving myself heparin shots.
My INR levels were still not within range so I had to continue the shots after Tuesday, but as of Thursday my levels are good so I am as of last night off the shots.
Woohoo!

But I am still on the Coumadin pills and will be for months to come.
I got myself to the dr. on Wednesday but am still not ready to go out ballroom dancing. ;-)
And I'm still having pain enough to need pills for that.
bleh.

I am navigating around the house better and taking the stairs on once or twice a day with the help of my trusty cane.

Next week I may try to walk to the mailbox.
Ooooo, how exciting! lol

Since my INR levels are sort of stable and good I have the green light to go on the Reunion trip next Friday......as long as my foot says I can go.

In other news, the second pay of the month came in and I sat down to look at and pay bills.  I've transferred gobs of money from the Savings Challenge account to cover the House repair/remodel bill which I am paying the last invoice for a week from Monday, the supplies we had to buy for the remodel/repairs and to cover the bulk of the Summer Road Trip of 2013.

Even after moving all that $ and paying September's bills(except for any cash Hubs took out today that I don't know about yet and the long distance bill which hasn't arrived yet-it's only about $10 per mo.)we have at the moment $571.58 left from this month's income.

But that doesn't account for at least 1 more prescription refill this month and any cash I need to withdraw for food for the rest of the month.
Bleh.

Looks like there won't be much leftover from September, if any!, to throw into the savings pot.

We had an almost $2K school tax bill this month which we were expecting but add in an almost $600 dog surgery bill and another $600+ for a car repair and there goes any money leftover at the end of September.
Plus we overspent on miscellaneous/souvenirs/gifts for Christmas on the Road Trip in August to the tune of $400 which we are absorbing the cost of from monthly income and not covering with savings.

And #2 Son chooses this moment to bring home an envelope from the Band about a trip to D.C. in May 2014 to the tune of $500.....
8-P
And this is even after we paid for a Disney World Band trip in 2012 and a big chunk of a Cleveland Band trip in 2013 and we've told him that any further band trips are on HIS dime!
Kids.....

And that's right after he took advantage of my weakened/sick state to wheedle $200+  out of me for new clothes(which he Did need).
ugh.
Kids.....

I am not a happy woman right at the moment as far as the money is concerned.

But I know things will be ok since we have no large irregular expenses from now until the end of 2013, so 3 months of income to try to save a portion of with no big obstacles.

Plus we have an extra paycheck month coming in November which I am going to try to put back into savings and not spend any from that!

We've got some Reunion trip spending coming up(only 2 nights so shouldn't be much extra)and a quick trip to OC in October(again, not too costly as it's a partial week and if we can stay out of the outrageously expensive restaurants down there we'll be golden)but overall expenses for the next 3 months look aok.  While Christmas will require some spending it shouldn't be too bad because I'm not a "let's spend all willy-nilly and not care what it costs at Christmas" type of person.

So I'm going to put the financial books away for a bit and not think about that all right now.

I'm off to get this foot elevated and go pop another Percocet.  Between the foot and talking about spending all this money, I don't know which hurts me worse.  8-))

Sluggy


 

Week 3 of the Boring Blog Box Giveaway is now Open!

Here's how it works if you are new here.......
 
I put things in the box(mostly what I have gotten for free or almost free)each week and when the box is filled we draw a winner from all the entries received.

Here is what went into the Box today......2 items to make your joints and eyes feel better, 1 item to make your skin feel better and 1 item to make your eyes purty......


 
1.  1 Glade Scented oil Candleholder w/candle
2.  1 Got2B Collagen Hair Treatment Sprayer
3.  1 tube of NYC Lip Gloss-Clear
4.  2 bottles of NYC Nail Polish--a pink color and a bluish/purple glitter color
 

 Over $20 retail worth of HBAs!
 
If this is your first time, please go read all the rules for these Giveaways HERE.  *As always, if you are located outside the US, you CAN enter and win but weight restrictions/shipping costs may mean your prize box will contain less items.*

***Time to enter.....You can enter on this Giveaway post until I close this post to entries.

1 entry per person per day on THIS POST.
Leave your name/email address and a COMMENT on this post.  

This week I want to hear about any good recipes you have using fresh seasonal products.
Pies, soups, side dishes, main dishes, or whatever using tomatoes, squashes, apples, pears, or whatever else is in season where you live.

I try to make my pepper relish this time of year when the bell peppers are bountiful and cheap, as well as apple dumplings and pies as the new crop of apples is coming in around here.  Fall is also fall/winter squash time and I want to try making butternut squash filled raviolis.
 
 
You can come directly to this blog post or find it through the link on the right side bar to leave 1 comment per day.  The current Giveaway Post will be linked right at the top of the side bar.

Please NOTE--You MUST be a follower to enter the Giveaway.  If you aren't one, just click on the "Follow" button on the right hand side of my blog to become a follower.

There are 2 ways to get 2 EXTRA entries on this and each new Giveaway Post besides the daily comment.......

1. Put my blog on your blog's Blogroll.  Leave an extra comment for this entry on THIS POST with the URL of your blog so I can go check it out. **If I'm already on your Blogroll, say so in an extra entry comment once each week of this giveaway.
2.  Blog about this Giveaway on your blog with a link to this post.  Leave an extra comment for this entry on THIS POST with a link to your blog post so I can go view it.  You can do this extra entry once each week of this giveaway.
 
Two more weeks/posts after this and the box will be full and ready to pick a winner.

Any questions?  Just email me.

Happy Entering!! 

Sluggy

Thursday, September 19, 2013

My Genealogy Tests Came Back

My mitochondrial DNA test results, or mtDNA,  came back last Sunday night.
That's the test that delves into your maternal genes or your X side of the chromosomes.

It can tell you where in the world your mother's, mother's, mother's, etc. to your first female ancestor, where their DNA originated.

This geographic region and pattern of migration is called your Haplogroup.
You can be tested for both your mtDNA haplogroup and your Y-DNA haplogroup, which is the DNA from your father's, father's, father's, etc. back to your first male ancestor.

While these 2 tests only give you all the way back on your paternal male line and your maternal female line, it's a start to help prove or disprove your paper trail of ancestors.

Since I am female, I can only have my mtDNA tested, as I don't carry a Y chromosome.  To get my Y-DNA tested I need to have a male relative, either a brother, father, uncle or grandfather on my paternal side of the family tested too.  Having my sons tested won't help, as they carry their father's Y-DNA, not my father's Y-DNA.
I paid for and my only male relative agreed to take the test but he hasn't sent it back yet.  Until he does I won't have a complete picture of the possible Y-DNA information for my genealogy research.

Anyway, back to my mtDNA test results.
Aren't you excited? lolz

My haplogroup is........ J*

Any other Js out there??

About J........it arose from the larger group called JT, and T also broke off and became it's own Haplogroup.

I fellow named Sykes wrote a book a bit ago, in which he says that though we all came from 1 woman, the first "Eve" located somewhere in Africa, the "daughters of Eve" gave rise to the Haplogroups around the world.  These early women each experienced mutations in their mtDNA combined with their migration around the planet gave rise to the differences in humankind around the world.

J or "Jasmine" as Sykes calls her, was a female who lived about 45,000 years ago in the Near East or the Caucasus who developed a mutation in her DNA.  Further mutations occurred in this J Haplogroup at various time frames between 27,000 to 5,800 years later which led to "subclades" or further subgroups of J---- J1a1, J1a2, J1b, J2a, J2b1, J2b2, J2b3.

Haplogroup J mtDNA humans migrated from the Near/East/Caucasus to colonize Europe during the late Paleolithic and Mesolithic eras.

Using the variations in mutations among the J mtDNA persons, scientists have been able to separate the "Jasmines" into 2 groups migrating into Europe---those that took a southerly route via water and the Mediterranean Sea into Europe and those who took the land route through the Balkans and up through central Europe.
My mutations indicate that I am a "Land Route Jasmine" who went to Europe the hard way.
Figures......I seem to do everything the hard way. 8-)
"Jasmines" are associated with and figure prominently into the Neolithic era spread of agriculture, or farming superseding hunting/gathering as a lifestyle around 10,000 years ago.

Distributed over the entire world's population, J Haplogroup has it's highest distribution in the Near East(12%), followed by Europe(11%), the Caucasus(8%), and North Africa(6%).
Within Europe, J Haplogroup is quite low, at only 12% of all native Europeans.

Here is a chart with the breakdown of percentages of Js and it's subclades in Europe.....

  • J* = Ireland — 12%, England-Wales — 11%, Scotland — 9%, Orkney — 8%, Germany — 7%, Russia (European) — 7%, Iceland — 7%, Austria-Switzerland — 5%, Finland-Estonia — 5%, Spain-Portugal — 4%, France-Italy — 3%
  • J1a = Austria-Switzerland — 3%
  • J1b1 = Scotland — 4%
  • J2 = France-Italy — 2%
  • J2a = Homogenously spread in Europe. Absent in the nations around the Caucasus. Not known to be found elsewhere.
  • J2b1 = Virtually absent in Europe. Found in diverse forms in the Near East.

  • It is theorized that some of the recombinations/mutations among J humans produced higher body temperatures, thus some subgroups of J Haplogroup populations do better in colder climates.
    This might help to explain how Js adapted to all that Northern Western European climes like Ireland, Switzerland, and Scandinavian countries and why I like to walk around barefoot in the snow..... ;-)

    Medically, Js are thought to be less susceptible to diseases like Parkinson's and Alzheimer's.  They have also found that some isolated groups of J populations tend to be longer lived than the general population.
    On the other side, Js are MORE susceptible to the HIV virus so if exposed, they are highly likely to develop AIDS and do so rather quickly.
    Js are associated with a fairly rare hereditary disease called Leber's hereditary optical neuropathy.
    Try saying THAT 10 x real fast!

    I saw a study where they are studying how a woman's mtDNA can cause her partner's sperm to lose mobility, making for infertility problems with the couple.  They suspect that women with mtDNA of Haplogroup T may have this condition.  Interesting stuff genetics.......

    So what does all this mean?
    It just confirms that once again, the evidence comes back to support that I am the whitest woman on the planet! lolz

    Anyway, that's my earth shattering genealogical news for today.

    Next time I'll enthrall all of y'all with my HVR1 and HVR2 mutations.
    I know you can't wait!! ;-)

    Until then, enjoy this silly video....



    Sluggy




     

    Wednesday, September 18, 2013

    What's On The Dining Table

    The "Best Laid Plans Go Awry" Edition......



     Here's what was planned last week--

    Sunday--Hamburgers, Green Beans, Roasted Potatoes and Onions
    Monday--Cheddar Broccoli Soup(garden broccoli)
    Tuesday--Tacos (I  had leftover roasted potatoes and onions instead.)
    Wednesday--Eggplant Parmesan(sauce using garden tomatoes), Caprese Salad, Garlic Bread
    Thursday--Roasted Chicken, Carrots, Onions, Stuffing
    Friday--London Broil/Green Beans Stir fry, Rice
    Saturday--Fish fry, Beets, Coleslaw

    And here's what actually got eaten--

    Sunday--Hamburgers, Green Beans, Roasted Potatoes and Onions
    Monday--Cheddar Broccoli Soup(garden broccoli)
    Tuesday--Tacos (I had leftover taters and onions.)
    Wednesday--Eggplant Parmesan, Green Salad(leftover greens, garden tomatoes)
    Thursday--leftovers(I had broccoli soup.)
    Friday--Chinese take-out
    Saturday--leftovers (I had a turkey sandwich.)

    So Wed., Thur., and Fri. meals are moved yet again to this coming week
      
    As for food spending last week.....I spent $29.44 on $65.36 worth of groceries at 1 store.  Actually Hubs spent the $ as I was in no shape to go shopping from Wednesday on.

    As for food waste, we had a cantaloupe go bad since I was indisposed and nobody else it seems can clean a cantaloupe so we could eat it. 8-(  A hunk of my homemade bread also got too stale to eat so it became squirrel food.
      
    Leftovers going into this week--a hunk of London broil, a butt load of green beans and tomatoes from the garden.

    Here's this week's meal plan---
     
    Sunday--Leftovers (I had my leftover Chinese Food.)
    Monday--Leftover London Broil cut thin for beef hoagies(with caramelized onions and melted provolone cheese), stir fried Green Beans
    Tuesday--Roasted Chicken with Onions & Carrots, Stuffing(for the menfolk), Cranberry "Glop"
    Wednesday--Frozen Pizzas(I can have a small piece), Caprese Salad
    Thursday--Broccoli Casserole, maybe Pork chops if I can dig them out, Applesauce
    Friday--no clue but will probably involve tomatoes and/or green beans lolz
    Saturday--ditto

    On the shopping list......Hubs already bought steak rolls, provolone cheese, lettuce, a loaf of wheat bread(for his lunch sandwiches), so I still need, frozen pizzas, a ball of fresh mozzarella and basil, milk, perhaps some more broccoli and who knows what else!  If Hubs feels like doing a major shop I'll say $100 for this plus picking up some more deals for this week to use next week.  Goodness knows I have only spent just over $103 to this point in September of the food budget, due to not being able to get to the store with my foot, so I can afford a big shopping trip. 8-)

    That's what's appearing on the kitchen table this week here at Chez Sluggy. 
      
     What's getting fixed and served at your house this week?

    Sluggy

    Tuesday, September 17, 2013

    Hurrying Up & Waiting

    My week isn't turning out how I wanted it to, though last week was similar, so I am not surprised the way it's going.

    I am feeling better though.  No more redneck porta-potty here now thank goodness.  I can put more weight on my foot and do a tiny bit of walking(if you can call it that).
    I actually got UP the stairs Saturday night to my wonderful bed for the first time since Thursday morning when I butt scooted down the staircase.  It was heavenly to actually get to sleep laying down.....ahhhhhh!
    By Sunday afternoon I was able to sort of walk down again and walk back up for bedtime again that evening.  So now I am at least mobile enough to take short trips within the house from room to room if I rest the foot in between.

    I also learned that not only can you get a blood clot in a leg from inactivity(like sitting or standing too long in one position), you can also get one from too much activity.  Who would have thunk that?!

    I am still on Percocet however and that is what is helping me get through the day and get to sleep at night.  It takes the pain from an unbearable level to a tolerable one.
    I have a fairly high pain threshold(demonstrated by having 1 of my babies naturally with NO painkillers at all and having a cavity drilled out and filled with no novocaine once)but being in pain nostop with no relief for days on end isn't my idea of a picnic. After 2 days of that, I break down and beg for it to stop.

    I am now worried that this clot problem will keep me from attending a family reunion the weekend after the coming one.  I have my heart set on going to this so I am doing everything they tell me so I can get well enough to go.

    The nurses are still coming to the house to draw blood for INR levels as they try to get me to between a 2 and 3 with the Coumadin in my system.  After 4 days of taking either 1, 1.5 or 2 pills I was still only at a 1.19 level so they had me take a quadruple dose(4 pills)last night.  Please pray that the docs get me stabilized at a 2-3 INR level with this drug soon so I don't have to miss the reunion. 8-)

    Today is the last day I give myself shots...yippee!  I confess I am not very good as a shot giver, even to myself.  I still say Hubs missed his calling in life as he gives great shot. ;-)

    I obviously couldn't keep the dr. appointment they scheduled for me yesterday as I can't walk to nor get INTO the car yet.  So they rescheduled it for tomorrow......and I think that is optimistic at best. lol

    I need to get my Meal Plan for the week done too.  But it's hard to do when I can't get into the garage yet to check the freezer to see what I have in it to cook and I can't get to the store to shop yet.
    I can send Hubs for a few things at a time but a full list overwhelms him.
    Maybe I can get downstairs later after my noon shot and figure something out.

    I picked the green beans I could reach yesterday from the deck as I had to be out there to put out the dogs.  There is also broccoli that needs picking today so I'm hoping Hubs will do that for me when he gets home.
    I wanted to get to the farm stand this week to get red bell peppers to make pepper relish as the window of opportunity that they will have them and I will have green tomatoes on my plants still is closing.  If I have to pay reg. grocery store prices for those I can't afford to make the relish and I am almost out of it, and the season when I can make it again is a year off. sigh

    My September is not going as expected so far.
    By now I had hoped to have the remodel finished and the Etsy store opened, as well as getting the eBay stuff back listed again. I only have 14 listings ready for Etsy out of about 200 pieces of fabric to put in that store.  sigh again

    As for the remodel....Hubs had to buy new baseboard moulding, as some of what he removed when we went to do the painting can't be reused, plus one of the walls in the rooms is quite bowed and with the carpet up and the hardwood flooring down, the width of the gap between the wall and the edge of the flooring is wider than the old moulding.  So we had to get new baseboard and quarter round pieces as well to extend the mouldings.  Hubs picked it all up(thank goodness we didn't have to order it and wait another 2 weeks for it!)and got it painted over the weekend....I think the quarter round lengths need a second coat though, so he'll do that this weekend.  Then we have to call the guys to schedule them to come back to install all the crown and baseboard mouldings.  It might take one day but probably will go into a second day to finish the job.

    Once the guys are done, then we have to touch-up the paint job and then start filling the room with furniture and figure out WHERE to put it.  Oh, and I have to make the curtains too.
    It's always something, right? lol

    So that' how life here at Chez Sluggy has been going lately.

    What's up at your house?

    Sluggy

    Monday, September 16, 2013

    The Man. The Myth. The Legend.

    Now THAT'S an obituary!

    See it HERE.



    I'll have to leave instructions that whomever ends up penning mine takes a few lessons from this one. 8-)

    R.I.P. "Freddie" McCullough.

    Big Tittie Sluggy
     

    Saturday, September 14, 2013

    And The Good Times Just Keep Coming Or Don't Needle Me!

    If you've noticed I haven't posted much in the last two days except for the giveaway post that went up this morning, which was scheduled ahead, you are correct.

    I've been having more fun that any human should be allowed since Thursday morning.
    Yah, that last sentence was written with sarcasm just dripping off of it.....

    I woke up before 6am with a severe throbbing pain in my left foot.  It must have been bad if it woke me out of a sound sleep, huh?
    I tried to get up but putting any weight on the foot just caused me to yell out in pain and fall back onto the bed.
    I managed to butt scoot down the stairs and hobble into the den and plant myself in the recliner.

    I thought that my painting marathon last weekend had precipitated this bad pain in my foot.  I had noticed that since Monday morning while the pain in my right foot at disappeared over the last few days from being on it pretty much non-stop for 2.5 days painting, the pain/ache in my left foot had gotten a little worse every day.  But when I went to bed Wednesday evening, it was sore but nothing that a good night of being off of it for 8 hours wouldn't make better.
    Oh, but how wrong I was.....

    After Hubs got ready for work he asked me how I felt and what I wanted him to do.
    I knew he couldn't take off work on Thursday as he had vital company meetings he couldn't miss without enduring professional repercussions, so I had him gather some items I'd need over the course of the next few hours to survive without anyone here to fetch stuff for me(like my cane, my pills, a bottle of water and a couple food items)and I hunkered down to get through until he could take me to the doctor or the hospital or an urgent care.  At this point I could walk on the foot if it was absolutely necessary(like to get to the bathroom).

    I called the dr. and they could only fit me in at around noon, but there was no way I could drive myself and I had no one available to drive me to the office.
    Hubs was able to come home around 2-ish so we headed out to the ER, since the urgent care at the other hospital is by appointment(which is a dumb idea by the way).

    After doing the initial intake at the ER, where they gave me a wheelchair, an ex-ray and then a Percocet(which did NOTHING for the pain) I sat for about 2 hours and then they decided to send me upstairs to their Urgent Care(which begins at 5 in the heart hospital facilities)since the ex-ray didn't show a break or sprain in my foot.  The Urgent Care would be able to see me faster I was told.

    So we sat in Urgent Care an hour longer before seeing the doctor.  She was stymied by my symptoms and the ex-ray.  The ex-ray showed a small bone chip or spur on the right side of my left foot, by the big toe, but that was not there the pain was radiating from so she couldn't decide what was going on.  She ordered some blood work  and it only showed a slightly raised white cell count(indicating some infection, which is normal for me)and that my Vitamin K level was quite high.  She was going to send me home and just have me wear an ace bandage and give me some more Percocet or take Tylenol(hahaha)and see if it got better.....or not......

    Just before she was about to leave me, she suggested we get an ultrasound of my leg, even though nothing hurt in my leg.  That was her last possible suggestion for diagnosing me so we went down for an ultrasound and then they drew blood again to check on some other level of something and then we sat some more.
    Finally, after being in the Urgent Care for 4 hours, she sent me back to the ER, because the ultrasound showed I had a DVT in my ankle.....which is a fancy way of saying I had a blood clot in the vein in the back of my ankle for which I needed immediate medical attention.

    So back down to the ER we go to sit in the hallway on a gurney for another 3+ hours so they can draw more blood and have an ER doc review my chart and they can set me up with drugs/rxs.  It was almost 2am when we got home.
    They gave me a shot of morphine in the ER which seemed to take the edge off the pain(thank the lord!)but sent me home with 6 Percocet-a day and a half's worth of pain meds(ugh).  Since Percocet did nothing for the pain in the ER, why do they think it's going to help the next day? 8-(

    Blood clots use to land you in the hospital for 7 days with a heparin IV in your arm.  Now they send you home with a prescription for heparin injectables....


    Yes, I am now giving myself shots of blood thinner.  I have needles and I know how to use them.....
    Lucky, lucky me!!! 8-)

    I am also on anti-coagulant therapy(Coumadin)and being monitored by the Anti-Coagulant Management Clinic.
    Try saying THAT 10 times real fast!

    I am having to have blood drawn and checked every couple of days to monitor/adjust the levels of blood clotting ability in my blood.  Not having enough of the drugs in my system won't help much but having too much could kill me.
    How comforting....

    Because I can't walk at ALL on my left foot since Friday morning I have nurses coming to the house to draw blood and I get phone calls every day about my levels and how much Coumadin to take that evening.
    Between the blood draws(plus the pokes when they couldn't locate a vein)and the heparin shots I've been poked 13 times since Thursday afternoon.


    I still can not bear any weight on the left foot so I have been spending my days going from the recliner to my desk chair(which has wheels), which I use to scoot into the kitchen to get my pills or to get to the makeshift Redneck Portable John.....which most people call a 5 gallon white bucket, since I can navigate well enough to get into the bathroom and to the toilet.
    I haven't seen my bed or a shower since Thursday morning and miss it so..........sigh

    After talking to the case worker for my family doctor I got a new prescription for more Percocet, at double the dosage, which seems to help me get the pain from an 8.5 to about a 2 on scale of 10, at least for a few hours at a time.  It's the only reason I am getting any sleep right now.

    I'm hoping to see some progress with the pain in the foot by tomorrow but every medical type person I talk to says getting to where I can walk on that foot may take awhile longer.  At any rate, I have a follow up appointment at the doctor's office on Monday but unless I can walk to the car and into the dr. office and back to the car and into the house by then, it won't be happening.

    The medical types seem to feel that the painting marathon precipitated the clot, which is actually good news.
    If there is no "event" that they feel caused a DVT the medical types want to keep you on this drug regime for the rest of your natural life, even if you have no history of blood clots.
    If they can pinpoint an "event" you are only doomed to all the shots and drugs and pokes and unwanted attention for 6 months.

    See? I really am lucky.
    8-)

    So post something on your blog for me to read or leave a long comment so I have something to do while I sit and can't sleep for the next few days.  I need entertainment and tv is a wasteland this weekend.

    Sluggy-the lucky one with a needle and who knows how to use it


     

    Week Two of the Giveaway is Now Open

    It's Week 2 of the September/Fall Boring Blog Box Giveaway.
     
    Here's how it works if you are new here.......
     
    I put things in the box(mostly what I have gotten for free or almost free)each week and when the box is filled we draw a winner from all the entries received.

    Here is what went into the Box today......2 items to make your joints and eyes feel better, 1 item to make your skin feel better and 1 item to make your eyes purty......
     
     
     
     
    1.  a 2 Pack of Oil of Olay Soap-sensitive variety
    2.  1 tube of Ben-Gay muscle relief cream
    3.  1 Almay Intense i-Color eyeliner/eye make-up pencil--rich mocha color for green eyes
    4.  1 bottle of Visine Advanced--Redness & Irritation Relief variety
     

     Over $20 retail worth of HBAs!
     
    If this is your first time, please go read all the rules for these Giveaways HERE.  *As always, if you are located outside the US, you CAN enter and win but weight restrictions/shipping costs may mean your prize box will contain less items.*

    ***Time to enter.....You can enter on this Giveaway post until I close this post to entries.

    1 entry per person per day on THIS POST.
    Leave your name/email address and a COMMENT on this post.  

    This week I want to hear about whether you take advantage of the cheaper prices of seasonal vegetable harvest in late Summer/early Fall by stocking up on fresh produce to perverse(can, freeze or dehydrate)it for later eating in the colder months?  If you do what do you like to preserve and using which method?  And what veggies do you get for the best prices in September and what region of the country(and which country if not the US)do you live in?
    In August and September here in PA I can my homegrown tomatoes and some years I buy additional from a local farm by the bushel to can if I get ambitious.  I often can my own pepper relish if I can get red bell peppers for a good price and I have enough green tomatoes left in September on my plants to make a batch of relish.  I will buy extra of the red bell peppers to also freeze peppers for use in the winter when the prices of peppers get high.
     
     
    You can come directly to this blog post or find it through the link on the right side bar to leave 1 comment per day.  The current Giveaway Post will be linked right at the top of the side bar.

    Please NOTE--You MUST be a follower to enter the Giveaway.  If you aren't one, just click on the "Follow" button on the right hand side of my blog to become a follower.

    There are 2 ways to get 2 EXTRA entries on this and each new Giveaway Post besides the daily comment.......

    1. Put my blog on your blog's Blogroll.  Leave an extra comment for this entry on THIS POST with the URL of your blog so I can go check it out. **If I'm already on your Blogroll, say so in an extra entry comment once each week of this giveaway.
    2.  Blog about this Giveaway on your blog with a link to this post.  Leave an extra comment for this entry on THIS POST with a link to your blog post so I can go view it.  You can do this extra entry once each week of this giveaway.
     
    Two more weeks/posts after this and the box will be full and ready to pick a winner.

    Any questions?  Just email me.

    Happy Entering!! 

    Sluggy

    Wednesday, September 11, 2013

    Of Feet, Floors, Flora & Furniture

    Not to moan again but I can hardly put weight on my left foot today so I am heading back to bed shortly and taking a pill for the pain as the last one I took this am is wearing off.  First to feed and put out the doggies though.

    I got the garden eggplants breaded and cooked this morning, so I just have to throw them together with some mozzarella and sauce later and bake it off and we will have achieved eggplant parmesan.
    Rah.

    Yesterday our beagle, Cherry, had surgery.  She has had a large fatty tumor on her side by her hind leg and it started impeding her movement last week so we had it taken off.  The vet also removed a much smaller fatty growth on the opposite hip/side and a new growth on her tale at it's base.  The tale tumor concerned the vet(might be cancerous)so we had him send that one off for biopsy.
    But Cherry is home and being her old silly self again.......


    And there goes another $589 we weren't expecting to shell out this month.  Sigh.

    Yesterday was beastly hot here so I was/am glad that the new a/c system is working again....yah!!

    I spent a good part of yesterday out on the back deck painting 8 long strips of crown molding.  I was trying to get that finished before Gary the handyman showed up to install it.  I got 2 coats on it all and Gary never showed up....figures. lol

    But the floor guys were back yesterday(Tuesday) and they finished laying the new bamboo floor in the dining/living rooms.....




    And the finished product.....


    Now we have to get new baseboard moldings, paint them and wait for the floor guys to come back to install that(as well as the crown moldings laying on the floor).
    I also have to touch up spots on the new paint job where the flooring guys marked up the wall(about 18" from the floor)while laying the floor. ugh.

    I also picked a nice mess o' beans yesterday from the garden.....


    I added this to the mess o' maters, more beans, broccoli and eggplants I picked last weekend.....





    The broccoli has already been made into soup and most of the maters have been peeled and cooked down so I will can them tonight after dinner.  I also need to blanch and freezer a lot of the green beans as well.
    The tomato crop this year has been phenomenal!  The plants haven't grown leggy and tall but have been heavy with fruit.  No blight this year and the rainfall has been even enough through the season that we don't have many of those split tomatoes you get when the rainfall is uneven throughout the Summer.  Our neighbor has commented on how much we have grown on the plants and is angling for some freebies since he never does well with his maters.  He's a great guy so we'll have Hubs walk some over to him tonight while I finish up canning/freezing what I need to do.

    I spent a chunk of time yesterday while resting from painting the molding and sitting in the a/c house looking at area rugs online.   I have one for the living room but I need to pick up one for the dining room but after viewing about 5,600 rugs my eyes started glazing over.  I didn't see anything that I loved that was a reasonable price but then again, I am not really sure what I want in that space yet.
    So the search for the perfect dining room rug continues.....

    Speaking of dining rooms......Salvation Army showed up with their truck this morning at 8:20am to take away my oak dining room table/chairs and buffet.  It was time to let it go and move on.  I admit I was sad to see it go(though I did want it gone)as I bought that set in 1988.  The top of that table still didn't have a single scratch on it after 25 years, 3 kids, and a heluva lot of Holiday meals.
    The style fit into our first home well but it was never really "my style" and I am anxious to find something that is a better reflection of my tastes.  I hope someone finds many more years of enjoyment with it.

    Off to feed pooches now and rest my foot.

    Sluggy

    This Week on The Dining Table

    The "Better Late Than Never" Edition......

    Tomatoes from the Garden, as far as the eye can see........

     Here's what was planned last week--

    Sunday--Hot Dogs on rolls(leftover), homemade Pickles
    Monday--London Broil sandwiches with mushrooms and onions, Salad
    Tuesday--BLT Sandwiches(garden tomatoes)
    Wednesday--Leftover London Broil & Green Bean stirfry
    Thursday--Eggplant Parmesan, Caprese Salad
    Friday--Tacos, Corn
    Saturday--leftovers or Fend for Yourself Night

    And here's what actually got eaten--

    Sunday--Hot Dogs on rolls(leftover), homemade Pickles
    Monday--London Broil sandwiches with mushrooms and onions, Salad
    Tuesday--BLT sandwiches(garden tomatoes)
    Wednesday--? what Hubs ate, I didn't eat-too tired.went to bed early
    Thursday--Chinese take-out
    Friday--leftover Chinese take-out with leftover green beans
    Saturday--chili dogs on rolls, Me BLT sandwich and bagged spinach salad w/strawberries

    So Wed., Thur., and Fri. meals are moved yet again to this coming week
      
    As for food spending last week.....I spent $76.03 on groceries at 2 stores. 

    As for food waste, we had to throw out a small amount of watermelon that got mealy and old.
      
    Leftovers going into this week? Still 1/2 a loaf of homemade bread, a hunk of London broil, a  butt load of green beans and tomatoes from the garden and 4 cups of broccoli florets.

    Here's this week's meal plan---
     
    Sunday--Hamburgers, Green Beans, Roasted Potatoes and Onions
    Monday--Cheddar Broccoli Soup(garden broccoli)
    Tuesday--Tacos (I  had leftover roasted potatoes and onions instead.)
    Wednesday--Eggplant Parmesan(sauce using garden tomatoes), Caprese Salad, Garlic Bread(leftover bread)
    Thursday--Roasted Chicken, Carrots, Onions, Stuffing
    Friday--London Broil/Green Beans Stir fry, Rice
    Saturday--Fish fry, Beets, Coleslaw

    On the shopping list......fresh mozzarella, maybe fish(have to check the bowels of the freezer compartment), cabbage(for coleslaw), milk.  If I buy fish it will be a 3lb. bag and run $20 so we'll have more than we need for this week.  Fresh Mozz is $6.99 lb., milk $2.00 and cabbage about $2 a head.  We have apples I bought last week and canned fruit so I'll pass on fresh fruit this week and I'll pass on deli meat for lunches-I have leftover soup, some bacon for a BLT left and I can use leftover chicken from Thursday's dinner for Friday's lunch.    Groceries should run about $40 this week.

    That's what's appearing on the kitchen table this week here at Chez Sluggy. 
      
     What's getting fixed and served at your house this week?

    Sluggy

    Tuesday, September 10, 2013

    And One More Thing I Forgot.....

    Last week also sucked a little bit too in the financial arena.
    Hub's car's "check engine" light went on and long story short, after 2 trips into the auto repair shop over the course of the week, Hubs has a new sensor, a new catalytic converter and our bank account is $600+ more bare.

    Sad face.

    Sluggy

     

    The Past Week-Pull Up a Chair, You're Gonna Want to Sit Down

    *If you don't have a big stretch of time to read this or don't like long ranty posts,  take my advise and just move along.  I totally understand.  8-) *

    The Past Week has been crazy busy and has mostly sucked, as far as weeks go.

    Let me back up to Thursday, August 29th first which was almost 2 weeks ago(because that will come into play in the following narrative eventually.). 
    I had my follow-up at the Sleep Disorders Clinic.
    I told the clinician that my face mask wasn't right for me.  It's the one they fitted me with from the overnight sleep study.  It covers my nose and mouth(since I open my mouth while sleeping and mouth breath at times)but the bottom of it hits me right at the base of my bottom teeth at the gum line, and my dentist discovered at my last check-up that I have developed a spot where my gums are receding on the middle 2 teeth, exposing one of those teeth below the gum line.  We don't know if it was caused by the pressure by the mask or if the mask hitting there is just making this condition worse.  At any rate, I need to try a different mask.
    To make a long story a bit shorter, after a long conversation with my insurance company about my unhappiness with my durable medical goods supplier(the folks who rent me the biPAP machine and accoutrements)I am locked into using them for the time being.  I can't change companies.  The clinician faxed over a new prescription for a different mask to them on Aug. 29th so I can get a new mask after insurance approves it's cost.

    Now onward to this past week....

    On Tuesday and Wednesday I had doctor's appointments.  Tuesday wasn't so bad, just 1 appointment in the morning and then I was home to wait for the workman to come start Day 2 on the projects in the living/dining room. (He had started on Labor Day Monday.)


     
     
    Of course the cardiologist at appointment #1 fussed at me for not losing any weight since May. 


    Well I did lose weight in June but then we had to close down the pool so I got no swimming in and then between company coming and our Road Trip and some stress eating(not eating bad things mostly, just too much)I am at the same weight as I was in May, down 48 pounds.  Just 1 more Road Trip pound to re-lose.


    Wednesday was a bad day.  I had 3 hours of medical tests.  First an echocardiogram at the heart hospital at 9am.  As there were no handicapped parking spots open when I arrived, I valet parked the car and went in.
    They got me all nekkid and wired up like a terrorist bomber and started the echo/test.  The technician said after she performed it she had to inject me with something called "Definity" and had to redo part of the test.  She said I had had this substance injected when they did an echo in the hospital back in April when I had my health crisis, so to be consistent she had to use it again.
    I didn't recall being injected with anything when I was having the echo back in April but then again, I was not myself.  Not being able to breath will do that to a person. ;-)

    So the technician performed the echo and then put the Definity into the iv plug.
    Let's just say I had an immediate fairly severe reaction to this stuff!
    If you want to look this stuff up do so, but I'll just say that it's a liquid suspension of gas filled bubbles to enhance the contrast during echocardiograms. 
    It only stays in your heart for about 30 seconds but you can have adverse reactions to it for a full 30 minutes afterwards.
    Within 5 seconds of her inserting this stuff into my iv, I felt a burning sensation and severe pain run down along my spinal cord, down my legs, into my knees and then into my feet.  It felt like my back was breaking and my knees especially were on fire.
    WHOA!
    I yelled at her and tried to get up but the pain was so bad I couldn't move and just started crying.

    The technician seemed surprised by my reaction and then said it was very rare to have a reaction to Definity.
    I have since learned that this is bullshit!
    Come to find out, Definity is known to cause severe reactions and even death, and has all kinds of warnings on the package now because of this.  The package also says you are to have resuscitating equipment on hand when using this substance and need to watch the patient injected for 30 minutes after administering it to them.

    So what did this dumbshit technician do when I had my reaction?
    She flushed the iv to get the Definity out of my system faster, left the room and told me to get dressed and I could leave when I was done.

    How nice......

    After about 5 minutes I felt well enough to stand up and dress.
    I then had another test in the medical arts building, which is on the other side of the entire hospital from the heart hospital section.  Of course, I didn't know I had to walk the entire length of 2 hospitals to get to my testing area when the technician showed me which hallways to take to walk over to the Pulmonary labs.
    Yes, I had to walk about 1/4 mile to get to where I was having not one, but TWO 1 hour long pulmonary function tests.

    And come to find out, I could have dropped dead at any point in the 20 minutes it took me to walk across the hospitals to the Pulmonary Dept. because of this Definity stuff.
    Lucky for me and the idiots running this hospital I didn't go into cardiac arrest!

    So the next 2 hours was spent breathing into various gadgets and then walking the hallways and being timed and my oxygen saturation tested.
    I tell ya by noon when I was finished with all this mess, I was ready to collapse.
    But it gets better!!!
    After all this testing/walking I got to walk back across 2 hospitals to the heart wing to go get my car out of valet parking.
    Then it was home to supervise the workman and then collapse into bed once he left for the day.

    As for my pulmonary function test, I have mild hypertension and the breathing folks seem to think I need oxygen support while engaged in moderate to heavy physical activity because my saturation rate dips into the 80's.  I am good for 2-3 minutes and then the wheels fly off the oxygenation bus.

    So the pulmonary dr. there ordered me back on oxygen if I go out and do any strenuous activities.  And they weren't going to let me leave the hospital on Wednesday until the durable medical goods company I use(with protestation!)promised to bring me mobile oxygen tanks that day to my house. 
    Not that this was vital since I have an oxygen concentrater already at home that I use at night with my biPAP machine.
    Of course, the DMG company promised and never showed up, calling at 4pm to say they'd be at my house sometime on Thursday with the tanks.
    Yes, they lied to a doctor but that doesn't surprise me.
    This company, by the way, is Young's Medical.  They have offices in a few states around this area.

    So on Thursday around 11am-ish a delivery person from Young's shows up with 10 lb. oxygen tanks(they measure about 30" long).  So I asked him how I was suppose to carry these around and he went to get a bag with a shoulder strap out of the van.
    My problem is this......
    These weigh 10 lbs. so if I am having to carry an additional 10lbs. of weight around, it will negate any good the added oxygen I am snorting from there is doing.
    I can see if I am say in the grocery store and can put this tank in the shopping cart then I am not carrying more weight on my body, so the oxygen would do some good.....except that walking through a grocery store is NOT a moderately strenuous activity for me, so I really don't need the tank in a store.  I'd need it for a long, brisk walk or heavy cleaning or exercising, not for just strolling through the grocery store or a department store.

    So the delivery guy comes back with a bag and puts the tank into it and I go to hoist it over my shoulder and the strap breaks. lolz
    This is the universe saying I shouldn't be carrying this thing, ya know?

    So he gets another bag with a sewn on strap and I put the strap over my shoulder.  The bag hangs down longways, not horizontally across my body with the tank, but vertically and reaches past my knees.
    So every step I take the tank bangs into my leg and impedes me walking.
    And not only is it uncomfortable to carry this way, that mother f-er is heavy!

    It's a really bad system folks and guess what?  I am not going to use it.
    If I send it back I know I will get fussed at for it, but I don't see the point of first having something that will give me no benefit and second, will cost money unnecessarily since I will not use it.

    I might as well tell them to bring back the larger tanks with the little metal cart and wheel that around....which I also probably won't use.

    And then I stopped holding back and let fly all the grievances I have with this medical goods supply company to this delivery person.....basically, because I told him I was not a happy customer that they didn't have something smaller that I COULD use and that this wasn't the first issue I have had with them(the not showing up when they promised to and giving me a product I couldn't use) and he said to tell him everything I was not happy with.
    So he got told about the replacement mask gasket I was promised in June that arrived a month later and was the WRONG ONE for my mask.....and how I was on the phone with the lady in the office for almost an hour trying to get her to understand that, yes, you may have written down a Quattro FX gasket but they sent me a Quattro Mirage gasket and it isn't the same size.......and how over a MONTH ago she supposedly put in a new order for the correct gasket and guess what still hasn't shown up?(and this company's warehouse is only a 10 min. drive from my house).....and how they still haven't submitted any bills to my insurance company after 5 MONTHS so we still don't know how much they are charging for anything plus we can't get any insurance Explanation of Benefits because they didn't bill my insurance yet........and how the insurance gal told me that I am locked into using this company using all other equipment, as long as they are providing the biPAP rental.......and that last Thursday, Aug. 29th my sleep clinic clinician faxed over a prescription for a new mask to them and I was still waiting 6 days later on when they were going to deliver said new mask.......

    The delivery person wrote everything down and said as soon as he got back to the office when his delivery runs were over for the day, he'd personally speak with his boss, and someone would get back to me about all this.
    And he appeared to be very earnest and sympathetic.

    hahaha.

    That was September 5th and it is now September 10th and guess what company I haven't heard a peep out of?
    I have just HAD IT with this company!!!
    I'd like to give every one of the nimrods at Young's Medical Supply a Definity cocktail about now!

    But let me change the subject before I start to foam at the mouth here......
    I am done with doctors, medical appointment and all until middle of October, thank goodness!

    So Thursday Gary the handyman shows up as scheduled and works away on redoing spackled sections that didn't "take" and sanding other sections.  While he's here the guys come to fix the brand new a/c system that no longer throws out cool air.  It seems some wing nut came unscrewed from the vibrations of the compressor motor which in turn meant the Freon(or whatever they call what they use now instead of that)leaked out of the units slowly while we were away and not using the system.   The a/c guy retightened the screw and refilled the Freon stuff and said it shouldn't jiggle lose anymore.
    And coolness returned to Chez Sluggy and there was much rejoicing in the land. 8-)
    Let's hope things stay this way since we are due for a 2 day heat spell later today and tomorrow.

    Then on Friday it began. 
    The weekend from hell.

    I spent my weekend priming and painting the living and dining rooms and the ceilings.  The spackled sections were dry so priming all the newly repaired areas of the walls and ceilings was done on Friday by yours truly.

    Then on Saturday the Hubs joined me as I painted the ceilings and then we started on the walls.  My hands started seizing up from holding the paint roller non-stop for 7 hours at about 3pm on Saturday.  So Hubs, who had finished the taping and cut-in work took over and did the last 2 and 1/2 walls with the roller and I collapsed on the sofa in the den.

    Hubs doesn't "get" the point of painting.  He thinks you are suppose to use as little paint as possible.
    So when he finished and he was still on the FIRST CAN of paint I knew we'd have to redo a good chunk of the walls if not go over all of them again.
    8-(

    By 5pm we were done for the day.  The light was getting bad and with my terrible eyesight it was worthless to try to see where we had to redo the walls until morning.

    Bright and early Sunday morning we were back at it, paint rollers in hand.  There were some spots I had painted that needed touching up plus everything Hubs had done needing redoing, even all the cut in work.  He had used a brush and it looked just awful, so we dug out the tiny roller and tray we have and used that to redo all the cut-in work.  The tiny roller was better on my cramping up hands so I did all the cut-in work(except the high spots I couldn't reach).  Then I used that roller to do parts like whole wall sections around windows and the wall by the stairwell, etc.  I gave Hubs a lesson in painting(better late than never!)so he realized the point was to use up the paint. lol  We ended up going through 2 gallons this pass through the rooms and Monday morning the walls were well covered and we were ready for the floor guys to show up and start that project.

    Ever since they injected that Definity stuff into me on Wednesday, my knees have been aching.  I have a bum knee anyway so I didn't think anything of it at first.  But all that painting movement over the course of 3 days just made the pain worse and worse.  As a bonus, I painted most of Saturday in my bare feet, which turns out was NOT a good thing to do.  All that time on my feet with no arch support and when you paint, you are using your feet(up on the balls, back on the heels, etc.)and the stress on the muscles/bones in there that you don't realize the work-out you give them until the next day or so.
    By yesterday, Monday, I could barely stand up or walk.  It was agony to take a step.  Plus my knees were still aching which didn't help matters.
    I had to be downstairs to take care of the dogs and supervise the guys who showed up to install the flooring in the living/dining rooms on Monday.  By the time they left for the day at 2:30pm, I hobbled upstairs and took a pain pill and went to bed.  I had fed the dogs and put them out and had spent the morning making more Broccoli/Cheddar Soup with the last of the garden broccoli so Hubs had food to eat when he got home.

    I really didn't think painting those rooms would do me in quite so badly.  I haven't painted walls in a few years so I didn't realize how much worse off physically I have become.  Combine that with how much Hubs hates painting and it's definite that anymore painting that needs doing in this house is NOT getting done by us!  We'll be parting with money to pay someone else to do this job from now on.
    Lesson learned the hard way.....

    My left foot is still killing me today but it's getting better.  And the knees aren't quite as bad either, so I think I will survive.

    Here's a look at the walls we painted.....




    The color is called "Promotion" and it's a boring old tan/light brown but with lots of red in it so it's a warm neutral color.  Light enough to be bright but dark enough that white crown molding will show up against it.

    Note the nasty off white WW carpeting on the floor. bleh.
    Why anyone in their right mind would put white carpeting in the public areas of a 4 bedroom house is beyond me!
    A 4 bedroom house just screams that the people who live here will have children, lots of children, right?  I can see maybe putting white carpeting in a 2 bedroom house but a 4 bedroom?
    No way.

    By tomorrow I might have more pictures of the floor since the flooring guys are here as I type this banging away and making me more deaf.
    Time to go put another coat of paint on the crown molding out back and pray that it doesn't rain....

    Sluggy