Wednesday, September 15, 2021

#2607 the best thing about today


There were a couple of good things about today, and they could both be traced back to one thing: that I was working from home!

This morning, my alarm went off at 5:15 and it was still dark as dark can be. I did not want to wake up. I was willing to wake up, and then I remembered that it was Wednesday and I was working from home, so I re-set the alarm and slept until 6:30. Glorious! Decadent! The sky had lightened by then and it felt a lot more civilized to wake up when the sky was not pitch black. I made it down the stairs in time to log in for work at 7:00 and all was well.

At lunch time, I zipped over to the grocery store to pick up a few items. I had enough time when I got home to take the doggos out for a noon stroll. They were happy. We walked around the neighborhood and talked to a couple of women that were out in their yards. It is still warm, but the very hot temperatures of the summer seem to be over. What a treat to take the dogs out for a quick walk in the early fall sunshine.

I get to work from home a couple of days a week, and I really appreciate it. The week seems to go by so quickly when it’s broken up like that. Work from home days are when I plan to do projects that need a little extra time and concentration. It’s worked out well for me. 

How is your week going? What was the best thing for you today? 

Monday, September 13, 2021

#2606 musical Monday: Rodrigo y Gabriela

The last concert I saw at Red Butte Garden was the duo Rodrigo y Gabriela. They play guitars, and they do it really well. 

Since I’ve been listening to their music a lot lately, (I really liked the show!) I wanted to share a vĂ­deo of them. One of the songs they played during the show was this track that they wrote for the fourth Pirates of the Caribbean movie, On Stranger Tides. I don’t think I saw that movie, but this video contains clips from the show. It also has the orchestra. In concert, Rodrigo y Gabriela did it with just the guitars. It’s pretty cool either way. I love the way Gabriela makes the thumping noises on her guitar.


Saturday, September 11, 2021

#2605 Saturday with Sandy

Today has been packed full of stuff. 

I started the day by walking the dogs at the park. MT stayed home this morning, so I took the girls out by myself. Usually it takes us about 28 minutes to walk a mile because there is lots of stopping for sniffing. Today we moved right along and we did a mile in 24 minutes. Harley only pulled hard for about the first seven minutes, then she settled into regular pulling. By the time we were near the car, she was pretty much walking right beside me. Mac pulls, too, but not as hard. What’s annoying about Mac is that she darts. What I mean by that is that she will see something and start toward it. I tell her no, and she walks with me for a step or two, then darts back to what she was looking at. The darting really messes with that left shoulder since I usually hold Mac’s leash in the left hand. She doesn’t dart all the time, like Harley pulls all the time, and that’s why I hold Mac on the left. 


MT and I went to pick T up this morning from residential treatment. The doggos were really excited to see T when we got home, and he was equally delighted to see them. T will spend tonight at home, and tomorrow he moves into the sober living place.  He is spending time with some friends this evening. I don’t really pray, but I am offering up all my thoughts that he is taking care of himself. I think he is. I hope he is.

This afternoon, MT and I went to a movie. MT wanted to see a documentary called The Alpinist.  Many scenes in this movie - like ALL the climbing scenes - sparked my anxiety. The anxiety took many forms today: throat-constricting, eye-watering, sweaty palms, breath-holding, covering the eyes, feeling the extreme need to stop watching and leave the room. Sometimes I just had to close my eyes and breathe through it. The subject of the film, Marc-Andre Leclerc, climbs giant mountain walls without a rope. Not only that, he typically climbs mixed surface faces, meaning the wall might be partially covered with ice and snow. My main question during the movie was “How does he get back down?” They don’t really address that issue very much, until the end of the movie. Overall, I didn’t really like the film, mostly because it made me so uncomfortable. The popcorn was excellent, though.

Right now I am watching the Utah - BYU football game. It’s crazy to know that this is the 101st time these two teams have played each other. It is a tremendous rivalry. It is half-time and BYU is up 16 - 7. Might be BYU’s year, but I hope not. Go Utes!

Enjoy the rest of the weekend!

Thursday, September 9, 2021

#2604 three things: not alone, my shoulder, and calendars


1. I'm not alone anymore. MT is officially back from his backpacking adventure. The trip didn't go exactly as they planned, but he figures they walked around 130 miles over the past few weeks. Neither MT nor Kevin are very beat up. MT says he feet are sore and he thought he might have hurt his knee yesterday, but he didn't. He says he really enjoyed the break and is ready to get back to work on Monday. 

T will be home, for at least one night, on Saturday. We haven't received word on when he can move into the sober living apartments. I hope we can get him in there on Sunday, but we'll see. I think the treatment center he is working with is very good. My only gripe is that a lot of things have felt very last minute to me. Maybe it's just because I like to know what's happening and have a plan in place more than one day in advance. More to come...

2. My left shoulder. Back in February, I injured my shoulder. It was my fault, and the dogs were involved. I was holding them while I was sort of crouched down because a human and her dog were coming toward us. I stepped off the trail and held my dogs, but my center of gravity was all off and when the dogs lunged, as I knew they would, they pulled me over, jerking my left shoulder in a painful manner. I thought it was a sprain and that it would heal over time. It hasn't. If anything, the pain is worse. It used to be that I would feel pain in the shoulder only when I moved it a certain way, and that way wasn't necessary, unless I was doing the chicken dance, so I wasn't too worried about it. Now, however, the shoulder hurts at some point every day even when I move normally. For example, when I put on my backpack, sometimes I'll forget and it hurts my shoulder. I'm not talking about a little twinge. I'm talking about wince-inducing, eye-watering pain. I am no stranger to pain, friends. There are times I would put the shoulder pain at 8 or 9. Fortunately, it is short-lived, but damn, for those few moments, it's really bad. 

I was at the doctor yesterday and mentioned the shoulder pain. He ordered an X-ray for me - oh look, arthritis! - and suggested I go ahead and get an MRI to see if there is tissue, tendon, or ligament damage. He suspects something is going on with the rotator cuff. At this point, I want to know what is happening, so I'll schedule the MRI. More to come...

3. Calendars. Lastly, on a lighter note, can we talk about calendars for a minute? This has been on my mind for awhile. You know how our standard U.S. calendars start the week on Sunday and end on Saturday? Look at your calendar. See, there's Sunday on the far left and Saturday on the far right. In my mind, this means the week starts on Sunday and ends on Saturday, since we read from left to right. Right?

My planner calendar, which is from the U.K., is different. The first day in the monthly calendar is Monday, and the last day in the row is Sunday.

At first, this bothered me. Why would they do that? I remember asking my mom about it, and she said it is a European thing. After all, Saturday and Sunday are the weekend, so why wouldn't the week end with Sunday? It's totally accurate! My week doesn't start on Sunday in real life, so why does it start on Sunday on my U.S. calendar? Now the U.S. calendar bugs me, and I have way more of those. It is a mystery. That is all.

Tuesday, September 7, 2021

#2603 travel Tuesday: one month from today

A month from today, I will be on vacation! I just booked my flight to the LA area. I am a couple of weeks behind; I usually like to book my flights about six weeks out, but there's been a lot going on and I put it off. Thankfully, MT and T gave me a Delta gift card for Mother's Day, so that helped offset the extra cost of my procrastination. 

Yesterday, I did some online shopping for waterproof and quick-drying, moisture-wicking clothing. Apparently October is the heart of the rainy season (I think I've mentioned that!) so I want to be prepared as much as I can. The great thing about rain is that the place will also be very green and lush. I'm quite sure this trip will be an unforgettable adventure. 

Lizzie and I will be in the Arenal area for two and half days and three nights, and we are booking all of the time with excursions. We plan to tour a coffee plantation and walk on the hanging bridges. Lizzie will zip-line. I could not talk myself into that excursion. I'm a scaredy-cat. I think it's awesome that she's going to do it. Every day while we are in the area, we will take advantage of the natural hot springs. Our hotel has private springs and we will use them. 

We'll have like three and half days and four nights on the Pacific coast. We only have one adventure planned over there, and that is a visit to a sloth sanctuary. We are keeping our options open to see what else sounds interesting. We are hoping for a little dry time so we can go to the pool. Beach walks will happen regardless of the weather. Gosh, I love the ocean!  I just don't want to be in it. LOL

I've been reading blog posts galore about what to pack, what to eat, what to see, and what to possibly expect. I try not to have any expectations and just be as prepared and open as I can be to the experiences, but it's nice to have a heads up about stuff.

It's likely this won't be the last post you'll read about my travel plans before the trip, but I'll try not to be too obnoxious about it :D

Sunday, September 5, 2021

#2602 getting back in the habit

The last time I wrote here was Aug 14. I haven't written in my journal much, either. I'd made a vow to myself to write something every day, either here or in my journal or in my writing notebook. That vow was broken in August. There was a lot going on in the last 22 days, and writing definitely took a back seat on my priorities list. August was tiring for me emotionally and mentally in many ways. There were people coming and going and coming back. Work was tricky some days. There were a few days of quiet when I chose to flop down on the couch and watch TV, then go to bed by 9 pm. 

Two things became clear to me in past few weeks: It's very easy to break or lose a (good) habit, like writing every day, and it's very difficult to form a (good) habit. Bad habits seem to be pretty easy to form and pretty hard to lose, to be honest. 

Now, the page turns to a new month - okay, five days ago, I know! This morning, we are going to visit T, then MT will leave for Idaho. His original trip was cut short because the area where he was hiking was on fire and the Forest Service told MT and his brother to leave. Tomorrow he and Kevin will be headed back to Stanley to do a quick overnight hike to Cramer Lakes. He should be back Thursday or Friday. 

Tonight I have a concert at Red Butte Garden. The artist is Rodrigo y Gabriela. I have listened to a bit of their music, and I think I will enjoy the show. I love classical guitar. 

Later this week, T will graduate from inpatient recovery, and he plans to go to a sober living apartment for at least a month or two. I'm glad he made that decision. Right now he is safe and sober, and that makes me feel very happy. 

I have begun the Costa Rica Countdown (33 days!) I'm actually counting down to Oct 7, the first day of my vacation, the day I'll head to the LA area. Lizzie and I leave for Costa Rica on the 8th. Both Lizzie and I are doing some shopping to ensure we have the proper gear for the rainiest month of the rainy season. Truly, we didn't do a good job of figuring out a good time to go to the tropics. We had planned to go to Greece in October, and when that plan fell apart, we chose to go to Costa Rica and thought October would be a fine time to go. One thing we do know is that it will be very green and lush. We also have a high degree of certainty that we will get wet. It's all good, though. It's gonna be a freakin adventure!

All right, here's to getting back in the habit of writing every other day here. I'll be back on Tuesday Sept 7

See ya then!

Saturday, August 14, 2021

#2601 Saturday with Sandy

What a week this has been. I think I woke up in the night to use the bathroom and convinced myself I had to go to work this morning. When my alarm went off at 7:30 this morning, I had a little panic attack that I was late for work. Of course, it is Saturday and I did not have to work. I set my alarm because I did have a bunch of stuff I wanted to do at the house. Maybe subconsciously I was feeling anxious about the housework.

My main focus today was cleaning T’s room. He is currently not staying with us and won’t be here for a little while. He is in rehab for alcohol addiction. The facility where he is getting treatment looks nice, and the people I have spoken to there all seem kind. I’ve spoken to T a couple of times already and he likes the place and says the people he is with are cool. He hasn’t met his therapist yet or done any of the “work”since he checked in yesterday afternoon. We’ll see what he says on Monday night. 

So…my main focus today was cleaning T’s room. We have lived in this house since he was four years old, so he’s got a lifetime of stuff in there. The stuff has changed over the years, of course, from toys to video games, etc. With his addiction problems, though, there is (was) some yucky stuff in there. I spent several hours in the room and I’d say it’s about 39% better tonight than it was this morning. My short-term goal is to make the room clean enough that I would be comfortable sleeping in there. My long-term goal is to take out all the furniture, one piece at a time, and thoroughly clean the hell out of the space. I still wouldn’t want to sleep in there today, but I think by Monday night, I would be able to. That’s my goal. 

During the cleaning breaks, I made a pie. It’s a lemonade icebox pie. The ingredients are Cool-Whip, frozen lemonade concentrate, and sweetened condensed milk. You mix those three ingredients together, then pour it in a graham cracker crust and pop it in the freezer. I had it in the freezer, then I put it in the fridge. MISTAKE! It was runny when we cut into it. It’s back in the freezer now and I know it will be delicious tomorrow. It was delicious tonight, just not firm.

Tomorrow, MT and I are celebrating our 28th wedding anniversary. We don’t have any big plans. We’ll probably take the girls to the dog park in the morning. We have a Zoom call with T at 12:30, so we’ll probably do chores around the house between dog park and Zoom call. For lunch we are planning to head up Little Cottonwood Canyon to a restaurant called Silver Fork Lodge. We have been there before, but it has been many years. I thought it might be a cool place to take Mom and Lizzie when they come to visit, and I wanted to check it out before I took them there. 

It’s been a long day, and like I said, a long, emotional week, and I just want to go to bed now. Enjoy the rest of the weekend!