Yesterday was such a lazy day for me. I pretty much stayed in bed under the electric blanket and read. I still have no stamina. I wonder if I was on the antibiotics long enough?
It snowed yesterday and it is still around today, but it is not very much. Maybe 1/2 inch if that. I hope it goes away soon. The older I get, the more I hate snow. I mean, I appreciate its beauty, but nothing else about it. It just makes everything extra cold and the roads hard to drive on. I used to love it when I was a kid, but now when I see snow, I think "Get off my lawn!" as if it were a recalcitrant child and I an old fogey.
My Amazon order came yesterday, too. Well, part of it did. It is still weird having things delivered on Sunday. I got a bucket white rice flour, a bucket of tapioca flour, a bucket of potato starch, a 3 lb bag of sorghum flour, and a 3 lb bag of extra fine sweet rice flour (that's more for cakes and pastries). The latter two came in paper bags. The first four are for the master flour recipe. I already had xanthan gum.
So today I will make up the master flour recipe and put it in the stainless steel canister I also ordered for that purpose. It should hold two batches of the flour recipe based on volume. Then I will make up the master dough recipe and go from there.
I really like the little one gallon buckets some of the flours came in. They are light enough for me to manage and air tight. I think as I finish them off I will transfer the flours that don't come in buckets to those buckets and relabel them. They all stack, so they will take up less space that way, and I won't have to deal with all the plastic bags. I should go through the white rice flour fairly quickly as that is what is used in the greatest quantities.
I am still waiting on a couple of things from that order, including the bucket opener, but I can use a paint can opener on them as well. I also got some pure palm shortening for making biscuits and a stainless steel ice bin for the freezer that should come today. The bucket opener isn't slated to arrive until February 3rd! Ridiculous. Prime has spoiled me.
I spent about $202 on the entire order, but in the long run, buying in bulk is much cheaper. The ice bin was pricey and so was the canister, but you can't beat stainless steel for durability and longevity. We try to keep away from plastic (especially single use plastic) as much as we can. It is not always possible, but we do our best to use glass, ceramic, wood, and stainless steel when we can. It is definitely hard with these specialty flours, because most of them do come in plastic. And plastic does keep out bugs and larvae, generally, so it is a trade off.
I guess as long as I am mindful about is, that is the best I can do.
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Yesterday was such a lazy day for me. I pretty much stayed in bed under the electric blanket and read. I still have no stamina. I wonder if I was on the antibiotics long enough?
We didn't make it to Costco today, so we will try tomorrow. Instead we got our Christmas tree put up. Well, not our good Christmas tree, but one we got on clearance at Lowe's for $55.00. It was one of their floor models. It's a simple four piece tree that comes prelit with both plain bulbs and multi-colored bulbs. They are bright, but then all LED lights are. It's nice to set something up so quickly, especially since our good, big tree is in the back of the storage unit.
We used Mom's ornaments as ours are also in the back of the storage unit. Then DS set up one of his trains underneath the tree. It looks really nice through the front widow and adds to the Christmas lights in the yard from the road. I'm trying to convince Mom to put up her giant wreath above the mantle, but not sure I'm going to get her to dig it out. It's really beautiful and has a ton of decorations.
We haven't put up a big tree in several years. I have my little 2 foot tall tree that we don't even take the lights and ornaments off each year, just place it on the top shelf of the closet and then pull it down again when we need it. That's all we have been using. It's just a hassle when the space is limited. And Mom didn't want one at her end for the last couple of years, either. I wouldn't have put one up at all if she and DS hadn't decided they wanted one. It's hard to feel Christmassy in this house most years. I don't have a lot of Christmas spirit like I used to.
We need to pick up a real tree for MIL tomorrow and take it out there. I'm not even sure where to go since the stores aren't selling them this year and I haven't seen a boy scout lot either. There is a big fruit stand store that has sold them in the past so maybe there. I have seen several cars with them on top so someone is selling them. If worst comes to worst we can go pick one up at the tree farm near where we used to live. It's a bit of a drive, but I know they will have them there.
We have completed all of our Christmas shopping which is good. Everything has arrived in the mail or will arrive by Monday.
I did go and order some new bras since Lane Bryant was having a buy one get one 75% off sale on them. I paid $81.39 for 4. It would have cost 119.81 without the sale. Bras in the higher sizes are always so much more expensive for not really that much more material. Oh, well, it was a good sale with free shipping. Much better sale than the usual buy one get one half off sale.
Now all I have to do is order another set of new socks for me and DD and everyone should be set on clothes for a good while.
I'll do a grocery rundown probably tomorrow after we've been to Costco, but there was a great sale at Fred Meyer today on Afrin. $4.99 a bottle. It is usually $10.99, so at this price we really stocked up. I got 10 bottles. We go through this stuff fast around here, due to allergies and colds. I know you aren't supposed to use it consistently, but my son and I are addicted to breathing so we do. None of the prescription nasal sprays work for us. Now we have a bit of a stockpile at a fantastic price.
I used some of my allowance money that I have been saving to order a tenor ocarina and a music book. I really like my bass one, and am progressing quickly, but it is a little too big for my hands, so I will probably pass that on to DH. I tried one of my son's tenor ones and it fits my hands a lot better. Although I am getting one that is less traditionally shaped, also, because it will be easier on my hands. It is shaped sort of like a spear head. It was modeled on the Adegan crystal (which I don't care about) and is hot pink. It's very pretty. This is what it looks and sounds like if you are curious about my latest musical obsession:
I was also tempted to get the 6 hole one that is shaped like a Tardis but it is in G Major, and all the song books are written in C Major. I may still get it for my birthday in February, just because I'm a Whovian from way back, but as a collector's thing more than a music thing. Although you can play Doomsday on it, so I might just learn to play that if it doesn't break my heart and that song easily does. Smashes it to bits and washes away the pieces with my tears.
Anyway the one I did buy and the 30 lesson music book cost a total of $87. Free shipping as they are having that until the 15th. I have $63 left of Christmas money, but I may just put it in my allowance folder and save it. I'm saving up for a new computer. Not hard or anything, just so that when this one goes I can replace it immediately. I reckon I probably have about a year left on it, assuming I don't spill anything on it. The DVD drive doesn't work and hasn't for about a year, which is annoying since I like to watch DVD's on my computer better than on a TV. And the mouse pad thing has been on the fritz for about 18 months so I use a regular mouse with my laptop.
I seriously think I may get a desktop this time. They seem to last a lot longer and the keyboards hold up to the amount of typing I do much better. I can't even count how many laptops I have worn the keys out on. Never had that happen on a desktop keyboard. I do like the convenience of a laptop, though. We'll see. I have quite some time yet to figure it out.
Not too much going on on the financial front today, but I did have to run to the store and spent $10.99. I had buy some breadcrumbs for the meatloaf I made for dinner tonight as I only had 1/3 cup and I needed a cup. They have stopped carrying the brand I normally have so I had to read all the ingredients on the different ones they had. We ended up going with Kikkoman as it only has four: wheat, salt, cane sugar, and yeast. Eventually I would like to find a good gluten free breadcrumb, but the one they had had xanthum gum which is derived from soy and triggers DD's soy allergy. I also picked up some of those Simply crunchy Cheetos for DD.
I still have quite a bit left in the grocery envelope, $100, and I refill it on Friday. I think that I will just get out $300 this time and throw the extra $100 into the Medical Fund.
Oh, we did find out what the bonus will be and how much additional (it's a percentage of income) they will put into the 401K, but we aren't allowed to talk about it until it has been issued. It's not quite as good on the money as last year, but still good. I don't remember what they put into the 401K last year. I'll have to ask DH. I think most of the bonus will go into the Medical Fund, though.
We still don't know if MIL is going to give us more money this year or wait until the start of next year or at all. That's why I'm throwing so much into the Medical Fund. I just want to be ready for it since DH needs a crown. Otherwise I'd throw it at the Mom loan which I still might if we find out from MIL before we get it.
I did order all the clothes I wanted last night. It is my Christmas present from MIL. I have a lot of shirts that I have been sewing up the holes in for a couple of years. They used to just be in the seams, but now the fabric is wearing out in other places. I love these shirts otherwise I would have replaced them long ago, but now I have to give up on them. So I went ahead and ordered 5 t-shirts and 6 long sleeved t-shirts. 4 of them are on back order, but that's okay, 3 of those were short-sleeved and what I need now is long-sleeved.
On the old shirts, I will cut off the backs and make them into handkerchiefs. We get to a point in the winter when our noses are too tender for tissues due to colds and having them is a Godsend. Or my other option would be to cut them into strips for a rug, but DH has yet to build my rug loom, so I don't see the point in that, although if he did than I could use the whole t-shirts.
I'm not even sure I'd want to take on a new project right now like making a rug since I am already typing a lot each week and learning to play a new instrument, though. I probably have enough on my plate as far as hobbies go.
We went to WalMart tonight to pick up some outdoor Christmas decorations. MIL's treat. They didn't have much left. I guess when you start selling Christmas stuff before Halloween, expecting there to still be a decent selection on December 1st is too much?
We got icicle lights in blue and white for the house's gutter line and porch peak and some bush blanket nets, some candy canes, and 4 little decorations (a cardinal, an angel, a star, and a Santa face) that we can attach to the deck or put on stakes in the yard.. We still need to go to Lowe's and pick out some more stuff. I'd like a nativity and a wreath.
Unfortunately all our outdoor decorations were stolen from MIL's house, which is why she's buying us new stuff. The really sad thing is I'll never be able to replace my son's rope light Christmas train, they just don't make them anymore, or my seal that was balancing a package on its nose that rotated. Or my penguin with the top hat. I was very attached to those.
We also picked up a phone charger for DH and a dual phone charger for the van and little Huskies (local college football team) nutcracker ornament for MIL.
Tomorrow my son and I will work on getting the bush nets on the bushes and attaching the lower set of icicle lights to the deck. I don't know if DS can do the gutter ones or if DH will need to do those. We can also attach the small decorations to the deck as well. I might have to run to Lowes for extra large zipties, though. While there I can see which big standees I might want, take photos, and have DH pick them up later. He is on his mom's card, I'm not.
After everything is in place we can then figure out the extension cord situation and the timer. We have a bucket of extension cords so those shouldn't be a problem. We may not turn the lights on for a week or so, because I want everything to be ready at once instead of lighting up a bit at a time. Now that it is finally December I feel like getting into the Christmas spirit.
I ordered a couple things off Amazon last night. I bought a 4 pack of 100 ct dye free Ibuprofen. I can, on occasion, find one bottle at Walgreens. We all would prefer to have our own bottles, but that has not been the case. I don't know why they never have it in stock or keep so little in stock, but it is getting frustrating. We have four Walgreens in town. One would think they would have more than one bottle between the four of them. They all carry it.
Then I bought some lens wipes for our glasses. I have been really unhappy with the Walgreens brand of wipes lately. I've had a lot of issues with them either being completely dried out, or being drenched so much that you have to then use a dry wipe afterwards. The brand I am trying had five stars. We'll see how good it is.
I did manage to get another package of the breakfast sausage I like and pick up a couple packets of hot dogs yesterday, too, along with some milk. I spent $20.18. I almost bought grapes, too. They had a sample of these yellow grapes (technically white, but they were very yellow) and they were very sweet and at first I liked them, but then I got this weird aftertaste up in my palate that was like almost burned caramel. I asked DH if he got it, too, and he said yeah, and he didn't like it. So we put them back. I am glad they had samples. I wish more stores would put out fruit samples, especially when bringing in something new.
I did get my steps in yesterday, but I don't think I will today. I'm having a bad joint day with the shakes in my hands. They were so bad that I had DH season the roast and put it into the Instant Pot for me. I figured if I did it, we'd end up with floor flavored seasoning, not my favorite. LOL
MIL says she will cover our hotel costs and food costs for going to Virginia Mason. That will be a relief. With having to buy the dishwasher I didn't want to have to spend an additional $300 for this visit.
We are getting new medical in January. It's Regence Blue Cross/Blue Shield. Cadillac insurance. It will cost a little less, too. The deductible will be the same, $3000. And there will be a FSA of up to $2700. I'm not sure of all the details yet, but apparently you could write a check in January if you needed to for the full amount and they'd just take it out of the paycheck through the year as you go. It does have to be used up by 2 months into the following year, but I can't even remember a year when we didn't have $2700 in medical expenses so that will never be a problem.
I don't know what the out of pocket max is, or the per person deductible yet. DH is going to see if they have a .pdf or a print out so I can go over it. Dental and vision will stay the same as they are different programs. Although I am thinking about bumping up to the better dental because DH needs to get a crown and I need to repair a chipped tooth.
I wonder if the HSA can be used for dental or just medical. I'll have to have DH ask.
The doctor wants to remove my daughter's liver tumor, but we have to go down to Seattle to have it done. He wanted to send us to the UW, but I explained the problems we've had with the doctors there and the identity theft stemming from their hack. I asked about Virginia Mason instead and he was happy to do that. They have a good hepatology department.
He said the issue is the steroids that she has to be on for the rest of her life for secondary adrenal insufficiecy will continue to make the tumor grow. It is not cancerous, but can still cause problems and pain. Also estrogen will make it grow. And a lot of time when women get pregnant it can cause it to go so fast it could burst. Her estrogen is under control with Norplant and she doesn't ever plan to have kids because of all her health issues.
We have an appointment for her to be seen on Wednesday of next week. They could have seen her tomorrow, but that doesn't leave us enough time. We'll go down the night before and spend the night. Maybe we actually will be able to have this surgery done by the end of the year. Then it will be 100% covered by insurance. Keep your fingers crossed and pray for us that this will happen.
In other news, Woman Within is having an online 50% off sale through the 24th, so I went ahead and ordered 4 sweaters that I've been waiting on for a good sale. I saved $127.50 on the sale. It came to $143.59 with sales tax and shipping. 2 of the sweaters are for me (finally getting something for myself!). WW is a plus size website and catalog that starts at size large and 12/14.
I have liked everything I have ordered from them save one, a long sleeved nightgown where the cuffs were too tight and the sleeves were too short (and I have short arms). It was supposed to be full length, but went halfway up my lower arm. It was one of those billowy nightgowns, so I ended up cutting off the sleeves and just using it as a swim suit cover up for walking from the main locker room to the pool, because I really liked the blue and green plaid.
I took off the bottom ruffle and shortened it by a foot and removed the ribbon. I turned the sleeves and extra fabric into handkerchiefs for when my nose is too sore for regular tissues. So it didn't go to waste. It is flannel and soft. It no longer looks like a nightgown at all. But like I said that was the only bad thing in years of ordering from them. I could have sent it back, but didn't want the bother. That was back when I still had access to my sewing machine.
I haven't been sleeping well the last few nights. I have dark circles again for the first time in ages. Really dark ones. Like black eyes on the third day dark. Hopefully I will sleep tonight.