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Oh, Jeremy, glad your trip went well and glad you got to stop in NOLA. Due to some plan changes, L and I were here ... I'm not going to tell him we missed meeting up. He'll be too unhappy. :(

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Glad your trip went well, Jeremy. And thanks for the encouragement. I don't give him grief about not working - he should be able to retire at this age, and we just keep looking for something he can get involved in.  It's just the little things around the house that I have been doing for so long - hard to move over and share the load.

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CJ, I bet if you didn't move the cans to the proper place and they didn't get picked up one week or he got a nasty note from the removal people, he'd figure it out. 

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My mom has a way of guilting people into doing things and I had a revelation about 2 months ago that I was doing the same thing.  Got it pointed out to me one day and the light went on.  So now, I just let DH do it his way and we are both happier.  Pants on the floor? Not my problem.  Something doesn't get done exactly like I want--hey, as long as it gets done.  Now the toilet paper roll...that's another story....LOL!

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Lloyd took it upon himself to be the chief laundryman and dishwasher. Does he do either one the way I would do it? Nope. Do I say anything? Nope. He also empties all of the trash cans and removes the contents to the dumpster daily. 

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CJ, it took me a long, long time to let go of the independent way I'd been doing things when I was single and let Bruce do things too.  It's hard to make that transition so I know what you're going thru.  <grinning>  It helped that Bruce found his own hobbies and things to do so when he does retire, I won't have to lock him out of the house for 8 hours a day.  LOL!!!  Does your DH have any special interests that you can encourage to help him fill his time?  Since he's of retirement age, perhaps a rec center or senior center in your area where he can go make friends and hang out?  Any sense of purpose would help him (and you) during a difficult transition time. 

 

Jeremy, glad your trip was a good one and that you guys are home safe and sound.  Happy New Year!  May 2015 be the year all your dreams come true.

 

I'm battling bees in the backyard. Normally the bees and I live in harmony but because most of the landscaping plants here come from Madagascar and carry little passengers with them, over 90% of the bee population here is africanized.  I've had a small swarm invading the back yard over the past couple of days and literally covering my hummingbird feeders so they look like a furry mass instead of red glass.  I've removed the feeders (and my hummers left me *sob*) and thanks to the recent freeze, nothing is blooming out there, not even my neighbor's roses.  They gave me merry heck yesterday when I was trying to walk around the back yard and water the plants.  If you've never met an africanized bee, they are meaner than a wasp and twice as persistent as a two year old. When they swarm, they can do some serious damage to humans and small animals.  There's no sign of a hive anywhere in the yard so I'm going to talk to my neighbors and see if anyone is overlooking a problem.  I'll call the HOA and have them check the tot lot playground across the street too.  If they don't leave on their own soon, I'll call the county extension office and get advice from them about how to encourage them to move along.   But for now I'm going to take advantage of the morning cool keeping the bees at bay  and go give my succulents a dose of Cactus Juice.  They deserve a little extra calcium after the bitter cold nipped at their leaves and paddles.  Winter is growing season for a lot of them and they'll bounce right back.  

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Oh, Deb, I'm so sorry you're encouraging the importation of exotic species of flora (I confess, I'm a native plant gal); yes, they're pretty, but besides harboring little hitchhhikers that can compete and overrun/ exterminate the native critters and really louse up the local ecology, if they're very prolific they can become invasive and do even more damage.  Here in the southeast we're still fighting kudzu, along with hydrilla and the reticulated pythons are slowly devouring the Everglades; and the forestry people have enlisted Florida Scenic Trail members to report Brazilian pepper and other exotic invasive plants.  Hopefully the Arizona climate isn't as hospitable to your pretty Madagascar plants, and they'll stay put.

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I read it as other people are importing plants from Madagascar and Deb is having to deal with their resulting bees. :dunno:

 

Life has been crazy busy lately and I haven't been able to do any mini-ing besides attending the Salt City Minis club on Monday. I have been making 75-ish little clippy chalkboard signs for all the food stuff I do at church, and need to have those finished by Friday evening. I'm doing physical therapy at my chiropractor's three times a week (thirty minute drive each way, with a soon-to-be-three-year-old in tow), had a neck ultrasound yesterday (best one yet, he said - the biggest suspicious lymph node is shrinking!), and on Sunday I have tech team at church, a family shindig I'll have to miss half of, and another food thing at a class at church. Plus church tonight with 40-some 3-5-year-olds. Need more coffee...  :beer:

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My next cardio is a week from Monday, another pacer checkup. 

I realize Deb probably doesn't have a whole lot of control over whatever landscaping the house came with.  If it were me, though, I'd be sorely tempted to dig up the newcomers and replace them with native plants.  I'm no help with getting rid of Africanized bees, either; those nasties have been invading us for a very long time now.

I have been in and out of the workshop; it's too cold now to stay out there like I'd like, and the next few days are supposed to be even colder.  I did get a little bit done, including two frames made (one is still in the gluing jig, the other one has its matted picture) and the attic floor is started.  I also dug around in the box and located the bay window parts.  I double checked the schematics and apparently Ill be making interior window pane trim for the bay.  I had to make interior window trims for all the Buttercups I've built, so it's no biggie.  I'm rethinking the kitchen; originally the house was going to be pre-WW II and I was going with the Chrysnbon kits; but Washington wants the CC kitchen, so I guess it'll be like the house I grew up in, that was built during the 1920s FL boom, and my folks updated the kitchen with 1950s appliances.

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Well, thank goodness not everyone only wants native plants - not only would we not have lawns, but we would not have any oranges, lemons, most palm trees as well as thousands of other plants we all enjoy - even the 'native' azaleas were imported. As long as a plant is not invasive to the ecosystem, I don't see a problem with it.

 

All I can find on the bees is to locate the nest and spray it with Raid or use borax on it. All sites say the first choice is to call in a beekeeper. If you find the nest, every single bit of it must be removed or they will smell it and come back.

 

CJ, I agree with some of the other comments - let hubby do what he wants and when the garbage doesn't get picked up, it's not your problem. You are having the same issue so many women have when their executive husbands retire and suddenly have no one to 'supervise' and decide to become the wife's boss. Pick your battles carefully.

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DH is in the hospital this week. He had  surgery yesterday and is still stuck in PACU because the hospital doesn't have a bed available on an appropriate floor. The doctor said for his surgery the patient is usually in hospital for 6 days. DH is restless already and the nurses let him have a short walk through the hall a day ahead of schedule. He's doing really well. He actually asked me to download a book on my Kindle and bring it to him tomorrow. DH isn't much for reading, but he doesn't have much available for TV viewing and he's getting bored.

 

He'd never been hospitalized except for getting his tonsils out when he was 4 or 5 over 60 years ago and was very apprehensive.

Last week he made sure  that I knew everything I needed to know in case he died, including that I should let our oldest son handle the sale of DH's truck. When they let me see him yesterday he was very groggy, but the first words out of his mouth were "I ain't dead yet".  :makmiday: <--- the closest thing to a John Wayne emoticon they have here.

 

2014 was a terrible year for our family. here's to hoping that 2015 will be much better :pokerface: 4 aces would be nice.

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A couple of you have mentioned Africanized bees - treat them with GREAT respect! :worthy:  Many years ago in South America we were attacked by them, our family of 5 and 4 of our neighbor kids. We had gone for a hike and climbed a small mountain. Didn't realize we were playing King of the Mountain until it was too late. Found out later they had a huge nest in the side of the mountain. DH started down the hill first and caught the kids as they ran and jumped to him. I stayed back with our 2-year-old boy to make sure all the other kids were down and no one was left behind. I kept my hands over baby's head to protect him, and took about 50 or 60 stings to my own head. Those little beasties are vicious and aim kill-shots to the head only. I came within a gnat's eyelash of dying.  Not fun! 

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Those little beasties are vicious and aim kill-shots to the head only. I came within a gnat's eyelash of dying.  Not fun! 

 

OMG CJ, that had to have been one of the most traumatic experiences one could have!  They are nasty little buggers, aren't they?  I watched a poor little finch being attacked by half a dozen of them yesterday.......he was flying all over the yard to get away but they followed and kept stinging him.  There wasn't anything I could do about it tho.  I've pulled all the feeders inside and dumped the bird baths so maybe the next couple of days will find them moving along to greener pastures.  My hummers are so not happy but they weren't able to get to the feeders anyway.

 

For the record, all of my plants are harmonious with the Arizona eco system.  As I've mentioned before, I'm a staunch defender of the  delicate balance in the desert and all my plants are either native or variations of native plants just like they have been since I was a kid.  Since we share the almost exact same climate and conditions as the deserts of South Africa, there's no harm in those plants themselves.  Most are simply variants of the same plants native to our desert.  All are either grown in state or imported within the strict guidelines for plants here.  Yes, we have outlaw plants and there's not a single store who will take a chance on the fines associated with selling outlaw plants.  There are also strict laws about importing plants.  Interesting Arizona history trivia:  we used to have a Department of Agriculture Port of Entry on every single highway or interstate leading into Arizona from other states and every vehicle coming into the state was stopped for inspection.  If there were any fruits, veggies, or plants found, they were confiscated and incinerated on the spot.   We take guarding our eco system rather seriously.  However, about twenty years ago they had to start shutting down the Ports and that's when the africanized bees showed up. There are still guidelines for legal distributors to follow about sanitizing incoming plants to ensure no critters make it in but there are shady landscapers who do smuggle cheaper plants into the state.   I only buy from legal sellers and buy local grown whenever possible.  Just wanted to clear the air on that point.  

 

Grazhina, I'm so sorry to hear your DH is sick.  My best wishes that he feels better quickly and life gets back to better-than-normal for you.  You're due for a great year in 2015 after last year.  

 

What's everyone up to today?  Judging by the weather forecast I'm seeing, most of you are probably making chili or soup and snuggling under cozy blankets.   Stay warm everyone!

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I have to get out in this yucky cold in just a bit to go have my surgical incisions looked at. They look good enough to me,darn it-wish I could just phone it in! :( But I am hoping he will have my lymph node pathology report back.

 

Hope everyone stays safe and warm today!

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Deb, those nasty bees have been coming up from south of the border.  I'm sorry to hear that the ports are closed,  I remember them from when DH & I were driving our  to San Diego MCRD for his radar MOS back in 1966.

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Grazhina,

It sounds like his surgery went well if he's up an about.  The PACU is definitely not the place to recover.  Hopefully they'll find him a room soon.

 

My bike was covered with a layer of ice this morning.  It took several minutes and cups of hot water to melt enough off the handle bars so that I could even start her up.  After getting a few miles down the road, the front brake and clutch levers froze back up.  It was an interesting ride from that point on.

 

After work, I had to run over to the V.A. medical center to get fingerprinted.  I told my co-workers I was charged for parading without a permit.

:p:scooter:

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I remember those border-crossing checkpoints from when I was a kid. I think they had them in CA, too. I remember my aunt telling us to hurry up and eat what fruit we had because she didn't want it thrown away!   

 

I'm coming in on the home stretch of preparing for company and my mother's birthday celebration this weekend. All Christmas decorations are down and almost all are in the attic. My craft spread is put away and out of the office - and a bed for my cousin in now in its place. The last room is the guest room / laundry room.  I'm to the point now that whatever is left is going into bags and into the attic - to be forgotten, or put away properly at some future date (not tomorrow!).  DH and I went shopping today and greatly increased the stock market value of a couple of stores!  Groceries were down to the bare bones, pantry almost empty, and a birthday bash will be on Sunday - so a lot of supplies were needed.

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Running around doing errands today. I am probably going to pick up a new PC laptop as well. Our resident computer expert DS1 thinks mine is on it's last legs. Running super slow, plus I have a broken key and the touchpad hasn't worked for a couple of years. He's in the process of backing up my files/photos/etc. Why is it you don't do what you know you should? I've had Make a BackUp CD on my list for months :doh:  Also working on a couple of gifts for some dear friends. They are both fancy cake bakers, the cool ones with fondant and stuff that you see on TV.  Apparently the quest for large cake boards is never ending, who knew? I'm making a 16" board with a tiled top for each of them. So far it's going well. The large center tile is in place; now I just have to get the rest of them in place and even.

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Fruit/veggie stop still on I40 as you head toward Barstow as of 2 years ago.  CA doesn't like fruit flies. grew up with that, never seemed strange.  They put it on the interstate, never was one on Rt66.  I remember the stops in AZ, wondered why they took them down.

 

  FREEZING!!!!!!  

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