Sunday, December 8, 2019

It's beginning to look a lot like Xmas....

Of course it has been leftovers, leftovers, and more leftovers from Thanksgiving....So several meals have been Turkey, Hot Turkey Sandwiches, Cold Turkey Sandwiches.....and filling in with stuffing, sweet potatoes and green bean casserole!     I do love Thanksgiving and Turkey..... but it will NOT be Turkey for Christmas OR New Years Day dinner.... for sure.

And so we've started getting the Christmas decorations out.  We are so excited that our son Dennis, and wife, Crystal are visiting for a few days this month.  They won't be staying for the Christmas Holiday.....but with having to visit family members in Land-O-Lakes, and Lakeland......They will be back home in Iowa to celebrate the holiday with the kids.

So.... I actually put up TWO trees this year.  The bigger one in the living room, and a table top tree in the family room.  A few other minor displays on the mantel, the office desk, the table settings and center pieces.....the plants and ribbons on the porch.  I still need to pick up a wreath hanger so I can put the wreath on the front door.



Most of the Christmas shopping is done.  One more to order for Rich's brother Bob.... and I still have a few little things to pick up for Rich.  Finished writing up all the Christmas Cards today and watered the poinsettias on the porch.

We did get back to cooking and baking this past week.  I made a big pot of Chicken Noodle soup (no picture!), a peanut butter pie for Rich, and a big dish of Lasagna, which we will probably share with the neighbors, John & Dianne.  We'll never finish the whole dish ourselves.


The bathroom is pretty much finished, but I have ordered a chocolate brown soap dispenser, and tooth brush dish.  And Rich is in the process of making me a decorative shelf for the wall behind the toilet.  And then I have a couple of wall hangings to get up. 


Today we did some cleaning outside, mostly just with the hose and Clorox! Rich will be spraying the dock area a few other places with Wet N Forget to get rid of the mold after the rainy season.  And within the next week, it will be the power washer for the drive and sidewalks.

Had plans to have Miss Ava ( our friends dog) visit for a week, but as it turned out, it's the same week that Dennis and Crystal arrive.  So we probably will not see Nathan and Krystal again until after Christmas.  But on Tuesday we'll meet up with Buddy and Dianne at Hibachi for our last 2019 dinner out!

Still thinking seriously of hosting a New Year's Day get together here at the house.... and that will give our neighbors a chance to meet our two newest neighbors!  We'll see.

Friday, November 29, 2019

Thanksgiving with Friends

Yesterday we celebrated Thanksgiving with special friends.  Actually this has become somewhat of a yearly tradition....and so it's day we look forward to.

But the preparations began about a week ago with the customary grocery shopping, especially that Turkey that needs time in fridge to thaw!  And then Tuesday, was dessert preparation day.  I made up a batch of peanut butter cups, knowing that Krystal could not eat pie.... and, of course Rich made his pumpkin pie!  And by Wednesday evening there was one lone piece left..... ( I had one small piece, and Rich finished the first pie Thursday for lunch)


Nathan and Krystal arrived first on Thanksgiving Day along with Miss Ava!  And they brought Rich and I a HUGE bottle of Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey..... along with a bottle of cream soda.  The drinks were excellent...... I had TWO!  Buddy and Dianne arrived about a half hour later (and the ramp that Rich put together worked perfectly for Dianne).... and the chatter, conversation, laughter, picture taking and getting ready to eat began.  Ava kept here eye on what was going on in the kitchen... patiently waiting for Rich to drop a piece of the turkey he was carving.


The menu included: Turkey (of course) Herb stuffing (in the bird) and Sausage stuffing (in the oven),Mashed potatoes and gravy, cranberry sauce,  Buddy & Dianne brought the Green Bean Casserole, dinner rolls and pumpkin bread, and Nathan and Krystal brought the Sweet Potato Casserole, Corn and Cinnamon cake/rolls for dessert.  Buddy gave thanks....and needless to say........everything was delicious!

Dennis called early afternoon.  The family usually goes to friends home for Thanksgiving. But Dennis has been under the weather, and not feeling well, so he decided to stay home rest and take a nap.  As did the two dogs, Laia and Zoey.  They joined Dennis on the couch!😊

Staying home for Black Friday.........probably do some Christmas Shopping on line today................OR, maybe I get started on Christmas decorations......

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Time flies~ This week went by so fast

It's been a good and a bad week......I had been prescribed Omeprozole, and Ranitidine for my Barrett's Esophagus  As you probably heard, Zantac has been pulled from shelves.  Ranitidine is the generic prescription for Zantac..... so obviously, I had to stop taking it.  They replaced it with Fomitidine, which is not working.  I'm experiencing, again the bad symptoms (chest pain, stomach aches, etc.) but what is worse is that it makes me so very tired, and irritable!  So it's back to the Doctor on Tuesday.

What's that saying?  It's a bitch getting old?  Between working on the bathroom, the boat and dock, and the yard work we both have aches and pains:  my shoulder, and back.... Rich's back and knee..... UGH! 

We have not had the boat out since we came back from NY in August.... so it, and the dock was really in need of some cleaning.  I had to chuckle watching the White Ibis strut across the yard.. while Rich is so focused on his chore that he doesn't even notice.    A little later in the day... the Ibis was on the front hedge at the front window.


AND  as I was taking the picture.... with the screen door open.......... one of the black snakes made his way into the lanai!!!   Rich has been exceptionally busy - not just the boat, but yard work and above he's sealing the sliders.  And the last two pictures are a make/shift ramp for Dianne. Since she is unable to walk.... we need to get her and the wheelchair in the house on Thanksgiving Day.   And of course - he had to get the snake out of the lanai!πŸ˜„

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Moving right along on the bathroom remodel

Well the bathroom remodel is moving along.   On Tuesday the 11th, the plumber (from C&C Plumbing) arrived............an hour late!!!   He dug up a whole lot of dirt....  removed the existing water closet and install a new one, installed the shower valve in the wall, and installed a new  P-trap in the floor and moved the drain line.  He also removed  the old blue toilet and installed the new one.   Rich was not real impressed with his work....... very very very slow, put a few nicks in the tile floor.... etc. etc. and was here for better than 4 hours.  And so Rich has been pretty much finishing up the rest of the plumbing himself. 


The guys from Marlin Marble had planned on coming back to work on Tuesday,  but because the plumber  didn't finish up until mid afternoon, they rescheduled for Wednesday morning.   These guys don't wast any time.  They finished up the  shower drain and put in the shower pan, put up the wall board to support the marble..... and then did some work out front to get the vanity top to fit properly.

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They were back again on Thursday to finish up, installing the marble in the shower, along with the top trim, window trim, and installing the safety bar.  They also finished the installation of the vanity top.  They finished up mid afternoon, so Rich did the installation of the shower head and shower knob. And over the weekend he got the towel bars and toilet paper holder installed as well as getting the huge mirror and overhead lights back in place.  Also got all the wall painting done.


Early this week he started to get the plumbing finished for the vanity, and installing the new faucet.  And yesterday Cesar, from Marlin Marble installed the new vanity doors and handles.  I had ordered a shower curtain, and rug, on line.....but neither Rich nor I were pleased with the quality or the color, so today we returned them..... and I'll need to go shopping real soon! 


Of course - we still find time to work in the kitchen, cook on the grill, and make some of our favorite dishes.  This  past week we did the meatball subs, Stromboli  again ( it was excellent) and on Thursday did some Chicken K-Bobs on the grill, with some roasted baby potatoes.


And of course on the 11th, we observed Veteran's Day....  Had to share this, as we are so very very proud of our son Dennis.  This is what he shared on Veterans day.

"I am a Veteran, and a Veteran is someone, who at one point in their life, wrote a blank check payable to the United States of America for an amount up to & including their life... right out of High School to present. (Army Retired. Military Police... 21 yrs Active Duty Army & currently on 11 yrs as a Department of the Army Civilian) .. God Bless America, my brothers & sisters, family & friends, All Veterans & their Families & those that support them!" πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ


Next big day coming up is Thanksgiving......and our good friends, the Showalters and the Douglas' will be joining us for dinner at our home.  Dianne is not able to walk at all now.  So Rich is making a ramp, so that Buddy can get her wheelchair in up the landing step and the door step.  Once inside we'll not have a problem.  And of course Nate and Krystal is bringing Miss Ava, so we can get our dog fix!! Should be a fun day...

Monday, November 4, 2019

Bathroom demolition/remodel underway...

Pretty quiet week..... Rich had to go in for his yearly colonoscopy at Advent Health in Sebring, and all went well. This time he got the OK to extent the next one for TWO years.    I have ONE MORE DAY of eye drops....... finally!!!

Continuing to work on Christmas Gifts for everyone......... and it's going pretty well.  A couple of items have already arrived in the mail......and a couple more should be arriving in a couple of days.

Today the crew from Marlin Marble arrived to begin the tear out in the guest bathroom.  Rich has been busy taking down towel holders, doing some wall repair, and yesterday disconnected the sink....  The guys arrived just after 8:00 this morning and wasted no time getting started.  About thee hours later they finished what they could.  Tomorrow morning the plumber will be here, and when finished, the guys from Marlin will be back with the vanity top, and begin the shower area.   Some pictures from today.  Really hard working, friendly crew!

Another trip into Sebring on Saturday afternoon, so we stopped at Hibachi for an early dinner. Been doin' a lot of cooking and baking... but forget to get the camera out for the mac n cheese, or the meatloaf, or the burgers and the excellent peanut butter pie!!!  But I remembered today to take one of the Chicken Chili, and the peanut butter cups.


Monday, October 28, 2019

Yard work, cooking and obstructing our view!

Another couple of weeks and not a whole lot going on. 

I'm still on the eye drops - and just one more week to go!   Then I need to get to the optometrist to get my reading glasses ordered.  Tomorrow is another trip to Sebring for follow-up, so it will most likely be dining out night as well.

Rich has continued to do repairs on the wall in the bathroom, and yesterday finished  those areas with the speckling.  And no, that is not new modern art on the wall over the sink.....We got that huge mirror off the wall, without breaking it, and it is safely stored in the bedroom with all the other remodel stuff!


Our view across the canal has changed significantly!  The lot was very overgrown, and during the last hurricane, several trees were down, some partially in the canal. Owners of the lot live in Miami, and have not, since we moved here taken care of this property, and as such had become a fire hazard, it was reported,the owners notified..................and their decision?  They did not even come to LOOK at the property.  They were so upset with neighbors complaining, that they hired a crew to come and CLEAR the lot...... take down EVERY tree!!  So no instead of trees.....we get to see an ugly lot and housed across the canal a block away.



Rich has been finding recipes on line and spending a lot more time in the kitchen...... and I'm not complaining!  It's fun working together..... I get everything out he needs, and clean up the mess........and he does the rest.

This week our neighbor knocked at the door.......and delivered a fresh pineapple out of his yard. Delicious!   Rich found a new pizza crust recipe this week, and so we enjoyed a ground beef and pepperoni pizza!!    I did a big pot of potato soup, and another night some delicious Oven Baked Barbecue Home Style Ribs!
And yesterday Rich made another batch of his Peanut-butter candy.


Started my Christmas lists.....and got a few things ordered for family yesterday.  Time just seems to flying by soooo fast.  I'm planning Thanksgiving here with friends, and then trying to figure out what we'll do when Dennis & Crystal visit in December.

Probably won't be updating for a while......so



Monday, October 21, 2019

Shopping, Remodeling, Bird Watching

I think it's been better than a couple of weeks, since I've updated the Blog....  It's been pretty quiet..........  

The eyes are doing well.  Still taking the eye drops, but down to only three times a day.  Two more weeks to go.  Had my post op visit and everything is healing nicely.  My vision for distance is much improved.......but I will still need glasses for reading...........and over the counter is just not working real well any more.   
Rich I I both had our 6 month blood work done.........and had our follow-up visit.  All good!!!!  Tomorrow we head to Advent Health in Sebring, as it's time for Rich's  yearly Colonoscopy.   Today was the fun day day on an all liquid diet!  Appointment is at 6:30 AM!!!!!

Not even real busy in the kitchen recently.........lots of leftovers (pasta, meatballs, tuna noodle, meatloaf)  Chinese Takeout one night.  And the Chicken Quesadillas were so good that we decided to have them again!


Marlin Marble came and measured for replacing the doors on the bathroom vanity.  Having the doors and drawer fronts replaced with White Thermofoil. with a taller double door in the middle.  Everything from inside is packed in a box for now.   In the mean time Rich has removed all the tower rods, toilet paper holder, shelves, and is doing some repair on the walls.  Went in to town on day during the week and picked up paint for the walls,  sheet rock, drill bit, speckling, etc.....and the new toilet.  Still need to take down that huge mirror before they come to do the tear out and installation.  Should be withing the next two weeks. 


Today sitting on the back lanai we had a couple of interesting visitors.  First, the Anhinga, also called the snake-bird or darter.  We see him quite frequently.  When they swim, only their neck is above water, and they hunt by spearing their pray with their sharp thin beak.... and they always have  their wings spread to dry.  The Second bird certainly looked like a stork, but I wasn't sure.  Found that it was a Wood Stork, the largest American wading bird AND Federally designated Endangered.  Found primarily in Florida around the Apalachicola Rive.  Today, he was enjoying himself on the boathouse roof, right here in Lake Placid.



Saturday, October 12, 2019

Cataract Surgery #2, Lots of cooking, Dinner w/Friends

We returned to Newsome Eye on Wednesday, Oct 2nd, for Cataract surgery, part 2..... the right eye.  Once again, the process was quick, an uneventful.  Still doing the eye drops every day, but have decreased the number of daily drops.  Each eye started with 12 drops a day and for a couple of days, between the  2 eyes, I was doing 24 per day.  Now I'm down to 7 a day total, and that will decrease to  5 next week,  and then 4, and then 2.... and then I'm done.  Post Op visit is  scheduled for the 17th.  I still may consider having my eyelids lifted..... and that should also help with my vision.

Rich and I both went for our blood work today.......and have our semi-annual visit with our primary on the 19th.

Remodel of the guest bath will be underway soon.   But have to get the before and after pictures.

As you can see - the porcelain was cracking/breaking in the sink.... so guess it's time replace.

Today we started to get done some of the prework like taking down curtains, towel rods, shelves, and emptying the lower vanity.  Then we'll can just pull out the drawers.  Tomorrow we hope to get the huge mirror off the wall, and make our trip to Home Depot for shower  and sink fixtures, new shower rod, and hand towel rods, a toilet.......already purchased the grab bar. Marlin Marble will be doing most of the work.  The tub is coming out, making it a walk-in shower, and the piece of marble shown above (color - 6xTaupe on Bisquit) will be the shower round AND the sink and vanity top. Fixtures will be in Rubbed Nickel, and new doors and handles/pulls have been ordered for vanity.

But we still had time for cooking! A couple new recipes including Crock Pot Smothered Pork-chops, Chicken Quesadillas (they were excellent!)  Rich was in the mood for fried dough -  so he found a recipe.... and that was lunch..... he fixed some with powdered sugar, and some with cinnamon.........and decided he likes the powdered sugar the best!   Linguine and Meatballs one night.... and later in the week meatball subs.........and finally.... a couple dozen peanut butter cookies.


September just seemed to go by sooooo fast!  We generally meet up with the Showalters and the Douglas' once/month for dinner........but it didn't happen in September.  Tonight we did meet up at Red Lobster!  It was all you can eat shrimp week and we all took advantage...........The Shrimp Scampi and the Shrimp Linguine Alfredo was excellent..... and their cheddar biscuits are my favorite.  No room for dessert tonight, but we had a great time.   Unfortunately, Dianne continues to get worse.......she can't walk, her speech is getting worse, and she is now getting a lot of pain in her legs. We keep her in our prayers daily....And we hope to see both of these couples here at our place for Thanksgiving Dinner.


Sunday, September 29, 2019

Cataract Surgery in Process and more of the same old same old....

Well,  round one of Cataract Surgery went well.  The left eye was done last Wednesday, but the actual prep began on the Sunday before. Anti-Inflammatory eye drops 3 times a day for three days and then 3 times a day for one more week after the surgery.  The Steroid Eye Drops began the day of surgery, 1 drop every 2 hours until bedtime, and then 6 times a day for a week, 4 times a day the next week, 3, then 2, then 1 drop one time a day for the 5th week!!!  And the Antibiotic drops began the day of surgery, followed by 1 drop 3 times a day for a week after surgery.   Round 2, for the right eye will be this coming Wednesday, Oct. 2nd.......... and I started using the Anti-Inflammatory drops today.  Thankfully they give you a paper where you can keep track to make sure you get them done.  One sheet for each eye.

The doctors at Newsome Eye are great.  Dr. Sravistiva, MD is my regular eye doctor, and the one who does the surgery.  And surgery was a piece of cake!  At the same time she does the cataract, she also does the Lazar surgery to take care of the glaucoma.  So once this is done, I will no longer need the medication for glaucoma!    Post OP has been Dr. Ockx, OD....who is also excellent!


A bit of a break working in the kitchen.  Easy stuff like, hot dogs, Chinese take-out, and ravioli and sausage.  And we did try a new Stromboli recipe that was absolutely excellent! Take a look...


We've done a lot of traveling, and we always try to stay at a Choice Hotel to collect points.  Between the hotel points, and those that we get on our credit card, we turned them in for 2 $50 Gift Cards for Lowe's, 1 $50 Card for Outback Steakhouse, and 2 $50 Cards for Red Lobster.   Now we just need to take the right card with us when we head out. Last week headed out to Lowe's with plans to stop for breakfast first.  About half way there we realized that we didn't bring the Gift Card..... so we just stopped at I-HOP for breakfast.

Saturday we tried again.  Got to Lowe's and got everything we needed. Rich had only brought ONE of gift cards....so we still ended up paying the remaining balance out of pocket!  From Lowe's we went to Outback Steakhouse for dinner. And when Rich went to pay the tab...... he had brought with him the Red Lobster card!  Well the good thing is we still have and Outback and a Lowe's card left for the next trip to Sebring!  Dinner was excellent.  Bloomin Onion to start.... Rich had the Steakhouse Quesadilla's, and I had the Steakhouse Philly!  Delicious!


Been looking on-line, and checked some things out at Lowe's and Home Depot, as we are planning on the remodel of our guest bathroom.  Checking out colors, the cost etc...... and our next call/stop will be at the Decor Store here in Lake Placid, who did a lot of the work in the kitchen........ Hoping to get it done before Dennis and Krystal's visit in December.

And the Tampa Bay Rays  Clinch Wild Card berth!!!  They will playoff with Oakland on Wednesday!!!  Go Rays!!!

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Not a lot going on......cooking, baking, cleaning.......

Update on the pulled/torn calf muscle:  It was about three full weeks before I was able to begin walking near normal again. As of today it's been four weeks.... a little bit of an ache once in a while, but pretty much back to normal.....However the back of the leg, just above the ankle is still very very black and blue!

It was about a week ago, back around the 6th of Sept, when I finally got back in the kitchen...or I should say WE got back in the kitchen! Chili is usually a meal that we tend to have when the weather is much cooler, but it just sounded good.  So Rich got out his Mom's recipe and made big dish of Johnny Cake, while I threw together the Chili!  Excellent!!!


Lately we have had these strange flying bugs (?) insects (?).  There a lots of them flying around in the back yard, and will frequently perch on the aloe plant.  Not sure what they are. Thy have four wings...and the wings are clear, with like spider lines in them...





And of course we can never forget 9.11.2001. 

A day embedded in each and every American.....and a day when every person can remember exactly where they were or what they we doing when they heard the news.

Today we pray for the families and remember all of the victims of 9-11




But we also celebrate....my baby brother's birthday on September 11th.  This year brother Dave and his best canine buddy, Jake celebrated the birthday for a few days in the Adirondeck Mountains, where they took in the beauty of Mother Nature......


And then it back to cookin' and grillin'......A few of our favorites this past week...
 Chicken K-Bobs w/ potato salad..........Country Fried Steak and mashed potatoes.. and some homemade Banana Nut Muffins!


We had a few days when the humidity was not too bad, especially over the weekend..so we got some outside cleaning and yard work done.  Rich trimmed some more of the elephant leaves out back.  We got the hose out and sprayed down and cleaned the front porch and the back lanai, and the front entry area.  We trimmed the topiary in the front yard, and got that long long row of bushes along the west side of the house trimmed and bagged!  ( And those sidewalks will be first on the list to power wash - once this rainy season comes to an end... ugh

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Today was errands and doctor visit day for me.  I left the house at 10:30 this morning and finally made it back home just after 3:00 this afternoon.  Headed for Sebring..... Stopped at Wells Insurance to pay the Homeowner Insurance.  Filled the gas tank.  Went to Encore to get fitted for a new CPAP mask.  Changing from the full face mask to a smaller one that just covers the nose.  Last stop was a Newsome Eye Clinic for my Pre-op visit.  Lots of paperwork, measuring, and picture taking for better picture of any astigmatisms..etc.  They've sent prescriptions for three different eye drops... that I will need to take several times a day prior to op and for about 5 weeks after the op.  I'm scheduled for next Wednesday for Cataract Surgery on the left eye .... and two weeks later will have the right eye done.