Saturday, September 27, 2008

Tiny Steps

Tiny steps are my back's salvation...and totally frustrating. I spend half my time talking myself into relaxing. It's hard to relax when I know that we have 4 weeks(if we're lucky) to complete our scaled down project list. This little voice in the back of my head keeps whispering, "Winter is coming, winter IS coming, winter IS COMING, WINTER IS COMING!" I silence this voice by going outside and inhaling the heady scents of FALL...breathe deeply, relax, enjoy.

The glitches continue...
Wednesday, I donned my MP3 player and caulked the last 2 walls of the new porch. Z and I were prepared to prime the porch on Thursday. THEN, our water was turned off on Thursday afternoon! The water has been off 3 times in the past week! If you'll recall, the same thing happened last fall. Don't bother telling me that I could've painted without water. I'm NOT a neat painter. I need water.

Our water lines are disintegrating faster than they can be repaired. For the past 10 yrs, we've all been paying $25/quarter into an escrow fund to replace the lines. Last year the village said that we had enough money to start replacing the lines. Did they start replacing the lines? NOPE! They continued to patch the lines as they broke. NOW, the village decided to pay a firm $200,000 to STUDY the problem. WHAT?! You KNOW where all the lines are. Start digging them up and replacing step at a time! IDIOTS!

Friday it rained, as expected. No painting for us!

What have I been doing to relax?
My back prevents me from staying in one position for long. Sitting, and standing in one place are the hardest on me. After work, I've been laying down for an hour. Then I get up and tackle small tasks, with Z's assistance. When I feel a strain on my back, I sit down and read for 15 minutes, which is all the longer I can sit. It takes forever to accomplish anything, but I'm learning patience with myself.

The most relaxing, and enjoyable project I'm doing is cooking. We bought Jessica Seinfeld's book, and have started applying her techniques into our menus. So far Z and I have pureed, portioned, and frozen, spinach and carrots. This week we'll add squash, green beans, and beets to our supplies. Z has been very creative with his ideas on which veggies to add to our regular recipes. Last week we added the spinach to meatloaf. Z was amazed that it didn't change the flavor, or texture, of the meatloaf. Z giggled when his Dad(L hates spinach) ate spinach without realizing it. Z can't wait to try Jessica's recipe for chocolate cake, which includes both spinach and beets.

Today is clear and cool; a perfect day to move the sidewalk. No, I won't be lifting the sidewalk blocks. My part of the project involves measuring, and running the rototiller to level off the area where the blocks will be laid. Then my guys can start moving the blocks. It's supposed to rain again tomorrow, so wish us luck!

Saturday, September 13, 2008


Thanks everyone! Your prayers, hugs, and moral support meant a lot to me!

The last time I posted, I was controlled by frustration and self-pity. Half-finished projects and the payless days L and I accrued this summer were causing muscle-tightening stress in my back. I realized that eliminating this stress was the only way my back would heal. Prayer and self-assessment led me to forgive myself for not living up to my self-imposed "superwoman" status. I re-prioritized our projects and accepted the fact that some of our projects would have to wait until next summer. *sigh* I also looked back on what we DID accomplish this summer, and gave us a much-deserved pat on the back.

Staying calm amidst the continuing glitches in our life has been quite a challenge, but well worth the effort. My back has improved to the point where I can put my shoes and socks on, and drive. These improvements made it possible for me to return to work this week, which alleviated my stress over money. My after work activities have been limited to resting up my back for the next day's work, while trying not to dwell on the unfinished chores that are stacking up around us. If I stay on track with my exercises and relaxation techniques, I should be back to normal within a month.

My return to work was plagued with aggravations; 50 of them to be precise. The small resort in our neighborhood booked a packaged 3-day fishing trip for the white-collar employees of a Wisconsin company. This resort has no kitchen facilities, so we were contracted to provide meals for the group. I could rant forever on the snafus we encountered, but I won't. Let's just say that it was no picnic waiting on 50 immature "boys", ranging in age from 25-60, who instantly reverted to incredibly LOUD and obscene misogynistic rednecks when they arrived in our northwoods environment. Every single one of these "boys" arrived for breakfast grossly hungover or still drunk from their post-fishing drinking binges. Judging from the smell, NONE of them remembered to pack their toothbrushes!

Another of my aggravations is....
Whose bright idea was it to make kitchen counters a workable 36 inch height, and bathroom counters a back-breaking 32 inch height? My spitting skills have greatly improved over the past 2 weeks. I can now spit toothpaste into the sink EVERY time from a standing position.

I can only sit for short periods at a time, so my visits to your blogs will be sporadic. BUT, I want you ALL to know how much your friendship means to me. THANK YOU!!!

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Life's a Glitch....

Just when things were starting to settle down here, misfortune struck again!

My favorite cousin's husband was diagnosed with lung cancer.
My Dad had a prostate biopsy yesterday. The doctor is 50% certain it's cancer.
I put my back out Tuesday, for the 1st time in 17 yrs.

Stress is my back's worst enemy. I'm trying to conquer my anger at my situation, so my back will heal faster. I'm also s-l-o-w-l-y doing the back exercises that I SHOULD have been doing all along. Sleep deprivation, frustration, and boredom are ruling my life at the moment. ARGHHHH!!

Monday, September 01, 2008

Glitches Galore!

My life has been ruled by glitches the past 2 weeks!
Our internet provider is updating their service, so we have been without internet access numerous times. Z's computer died, causing us to share 1 computer between the 3 of us. L ordered US a new computer, then decided that we should put the new computer in Z's room. This situation caused a round of musical computers resulting in me not knowing which computer contained my bookmarks, email, and photo programs.

Before we put the new computer in Z's room, Z and I built a sturdy new computer desk in his room(pictured above). We built 2 cd/dvd shelf units into the desk for tons of new storage. Z sanded, stained, and polyurethaned his desk and is quite proud of the results.

THEN, just when L had everything installed on our computer, we got a virus Saturday afternoon and L had to restore this computer! L did a quickie job of restoring so we could webcam with SME and Doug on Saturday night. We had 6 members of L's family here for the long weekend who hadn't seen SME for 8 yrs. Unfortunately, SME's webcam was broadcasting intermittently, so we didn't see as much of them as they saw of all of us.

Yesterday morning our cable box quit transmitting a picture to our tv. The cable company tried re-setting the box remotely twice, but nothing happened. We've had this box for 6 yrs, so I guess we're due for a new one.

Here's 5 out of 6 of the wild bunch that shared our home this weekend. I'll be posting more about them later. Right now I'm too worn out from our marathon Wii bowling tournaments that lasted 'til the wee hours of the morning.