My kinda day...

The house cleaner got here early. The house is sparkling and she even wiped off the terrace furniture and vacuumed up the indoor/outdoor carpet out there. Everything is so nice.

I made an executive decision to take a rest on the current blanket. I folded it and tossed it on the ottoman and forgot to put it away this morning. She spread it out and now Zoey has, of course, claimed it.

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While she was here, I took a car full of stuff to Goodwill and, managed to come out of the store with only a few things. Then on to Costco where I bought a pair of those sunglasses for the car and a pair to spare.

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(I had my friend, Frank, look through them and he did not see the magic I do. Maybe they are special only to me and/or I've spent a lifetime looking through the lenses of the world's crappiest sun glasses. Doesn't matter. I love them. and now I have them.)

Then I made a quick home stop and went out to catch a bus to meet Frank for lunch which was great fun. I caught the bus home and now I'm watching the Mariner game. Things are excellent. (And how much do I love the new bus routes that stop just a block from my door??!!)

Gym family

My gym family is just perfect for me. They are always there with a smile and a 'good morning!' and they miss me when I'm not there and they demand almost nothing.

Today, the following family members were in attendance:

The usual crowd was on hand with the doors open. We all say hi or good morning. No one every calls out anyone for the occasional no show. We are banded together as a team if there is no one there to unlock the door. We'll have an actual conversation!

The pool...

Matt swims with me on Mondays and Wednesdays and sometimes Fridays. I often see him on the elliptical machines on other days. He uses a cane for the blind but has some sight. He's very sweet and swims about as long as I do.

Purple towel girl has the most graceful beautiful swim stroke of anyone I've ever seen. She always thinks the water is too cold and she would love to have the pool to herself. She swims for about 20 minutes and then spends 20 minutes in the hot tub or the sauna. She tries to come every day. Rarely successfully. But she's there a lot.

6am guy is very particular. He will sit out and wait unless he can get a lane to himself or share the center lane. He's there most every day. He always says good morning and smiles and that is his only contribution. I have no idea how long his swims are. He's always coming in as I'm leaving.

New girl is about 50 and wears the pacific northwest favorite black suit and comes in about 5:30. She always has a gigantic smile and hello for me. She does a lot of back stroke and just kind of piddling around. But, she's very lane conscience. If she's sharing, and another lane becomes available, she'll hop over right away. Very considerate.

Outside the pool - in the locker room - there's Susie. Susie is probably 50 and Japanese. Her English is way better than my Japanese but still kind of rusty. She is there Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and if I'm not there she gets all frantic and lands all over me the next time she sees me. So this morning I told her that I probably wouldn't be there on Friday but she shouldn't freak out. She giggled. I told her I would be out late at the Mariner game on Thursday so sleeping in. She thought that was very exciting.

Bre teaches at a private elementary/secondary school - special ed and art. She's really nice and loves her kids and co-workers. Her school was out for two weeks recently and she was so excited to get back and see every body. I'm guessing she's about 25 and comes in from Tacoma with her husband every single weekday morning.

In the gym... The lockeroom and pool are way at the back of the gym so when I leave, I walk through the entire workout area. There's the Tuesday/Thursday guy who always looks for my bag (which I hang on a hook in the pool room and he can see through the window in the workout room - it's turquoise with an octopus on it)... when I come out, he's there with a big thumbs up.

There's the guy who knows my car and so looks for me inside when he sees it and always has a big good morning for me as I'm leaving.

Then there's Michael who's married to Karen. Michael works out every single day. He swims about once a week. He's very nice. He works at Amazon. Karen teaches kindergarten and is quite fun. She goes in spurts with big breaks in between. We laugh about how she's so rarely there. Today, Michael told me that Karen told him she was going to swim tomorrow. He and I agreed that betting a big sum on that was not wise.

And, of course, Frank At The Front Desk. Frank is probably 55 and robotic. He does everything exactly the same way every single day. We all are amused by his never ever broken routine but we also all deeply appreciate that on Frank days, we can count on getting in, getting towels and everything going like clockwork. Lately Frank has taken to giving me a giant smile and way and Have A Nice Day!! as I leave. Frank's a favorite of all of us. He's there Monday-Wednesday, Friday and Saturday... like clockwork.

I love my gym family.


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Just Do It!

In the last home my parents shared, they had a lovely master bath. Not huge, 2 sinks, shower, toilet. BUT the sinks were in a large vanity that had lots of drawers and shelves. Almost all of them were empty. Unused. Unneeded.

That became my goal. I want drawers and shelves that are empty. It's just the height of luxury to me. And, I am actually getting there. Not nearly close but if 10 is where I started and 1 is the goal, I am now a 6. Maybe even a 6.5.

But, today I was reminded of one of the big reasons for the goal. I have shit I don't even know about. I have two lower cabinets in the kitchen. Corner cabinets that have those lazy susan thingies in them so you can cram more shit in. And they are both crammed. I needed a square storage thing with a lid and thought I remembered one in there. So I dug. And found 5 PLUS a whole set of toaster oven pans - the ones I've been looking for at Goodwill for a month.

I need to get in there and pull all that crap out and organize it. That's what I thought to myself. Well, self, why don't you do it right now? It's not like your busy schedule is has you racing off to an important meeting this afternoon.

So I did. I pulled everything out. I had to get my long handled grabber thing to get the stuff in the way back corners but I got it all out. And found some cool shit. And found 7, that SEVEN, empty Fiji water bottles. WTF? And stainless steel shelves for my microwave that I never have and never will need or use. And a pile of other stuff.

I kept out 10% of it and arranged it carefully on the lazy susan shelves. One side is cooking and cleaning stuff the other side is small appliances and storage containers. The rest of it is gone. Two full 13 gallon bags o' crap are now in my wheely cart to go to Goodwill tomorrow. A good bit went into the trash and two pieces went to outside storage.

I'm so proud.

Of course, come the empty Fiji water bottle shortage of 2020, I'm going to be mad that I tossed those suckers out.

shopping win/fail

So I did take the goggles back to Costco and got there just as the doors opened. The return line wasn't too long and I was done. I went looking for sunglasses. you cannot try them on, of course, so I just grabbed the cheapest pair. I did notice on my way out that the return line was now well out the door...

I unboxed the sunglasses at the first garbage can there by the door so I could dispose of all the packaging. I put the sunglasses on and they immediately fell off. I put them back on and WOW!! They are amazing. Too big for my head, but they give me an amazing view with zero glare. I mean zero. And glare is a biggie with me since I have permanent lenses in my eyes and they are that great with bright.

I wore them home and fell in love with them. When I got home I fixed the too big with tiny rubber bands and seriously. I love these glasses. I need another pair - backup/car glasses. I went onto Costco's website and can't find them. They are Kirkland brand so I won't find them at any other stores.

So now I have to go back to Costco's ... again. Oh well. I can go tomorrow. This time I will keep the packaging a mine it for data. I'd love to know what makes these glasses so great. I've never put on a pair of sunglasses and saw the instant improvement like these. wild.

Old Dog that loves new tricks

My TiVo got a major update yesterday and it's like having a whole new tech toy. They had a MAJOR update about a year ago which it has now taken them a year to get right but it's good now. The menus are way better and it does not take a bascillion button presses to do what I want to do.

But, mainly, the big diff is auto skip. The last biggie added in skip. When the commercial starts, there is a beep and that tells you to hit 'SKIP' on the remote. You hit it and the commercials disappear. Last fall they added the ability to pair it with If This Then That to automate the process but it was a really bad work around that I gave up after the first hour. But, now, they have built it in. When the commercial comes on, you hear the beep and then instantly the program starts again. It's pretty freakin slick.

The problem is, after a year of hearing the beep, my hand still goes to the Skip button. I have to concentrate not to. It will take a while but I think I can do it. Sadly, to make it work for baseball, I can't start watching until the recording is finished. This would make most games start for me, sometime after 11 pm. So... I still have to wait 30 minutes or so to start watching and then manually fast forward through the commercials just like in times of old.

I think I might pop by Costco again this morning - to return the goggles. I think I'll strap on the serious shoes and make a walk out of it. I was going to save it until tomorrow when I need errands to fill the time that the house cleaner is here but, heck, I could use the exercise today and who knows what will happen tomorrow.

Thing that is driving me nuts:

People who clearly believe that impeachment automagically and instantly means removal. It does not. If you want the president out of office, the fastest way, at this point is to vote someone else in. Impeachment proceedings will not make it past the Republican Senate and so will not end in removal. And, while impeachment proceedings could embarrass and even humiliate some presidents, it would, at best, be only a minor annoyance to this one. I have got to stop listening to NPR.

Also... Joe Biden - Bernie Sanders... are they the oldest whitest guys we can find to run? I'm all over the wisdom of age but seriously... I am done with really old white guys in government. Done. Again. I need to get NPR off my car radio.

Yesterday I stumbled on Addiction Solitaire. I used to play it years ago when it was called Montana Solitaire. The name change is appropriate. I can't stop playing. At least I'm now over Pogo so there is hope.

Two more condos in the building sold this week. Both at fairly healthy prices although one was $30,000 below asking. Both are about the same size as my unit but have only one bathroom (I have a bath and a half). They have walk in closets, I don't. They are on lower floors. One sold for $555 and one for $585. Today, one on the floor below me with the same configuration as those other two, went on sale with an asking price of $750. Thousand. This even though Seattle real estate has cooled off considerably and there is now a nice supply of condos available in this area. Wild. Just wild.



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Good Start to a good week

For some reason, the details of which elude me, today's swim was the best in ages. My breathing was perfection and nothing hurt. I wasn't bored or ready to quit after 30 minutes. I just enjoyed it enormously. And I'm taking it as a sign that this is going to be just an excellent week.

I don't have details on that either. I know Wednesday is house cleaner day and Thursday is a Diamond Club baseball night. But otherwise, it looks to just be a regular week. Maybe just a regular week with nice, rounded edges.

I do have a bunch of house hold todo's I want to get done today. Little things that are easily put off. But, not today. I'm going room by room and doing them all. Also a little laundry. Otherwise the usual. I'm saving my errands for Wednesday. Goodwill/Costco/grocery...

Ok second cup of coffee is done so I think I'll just get going on those Dija's.

In our house growing up, we did not have Honeydo's we had Dija's - Did you do xx? Did you do yy? - we just called them Dija's. No, you can't go anywhere until you've finished your Dija's. (As I type this, I keep using the upper case D and the apostrophe s and I have no idea why. It's not like spellcheck is going to be hip to this Dija stuff.

Reminds me of the time that someone - maybe someone here on LJ - asked me how we spelled the name of the imaginary friend that my sister and I had when we were little. Ok, 1. let's not dwell on the fact that we were not imaginative enough for each of us to have our own imaginary friend* and 2. yes, this is the same sister that I have not seen or spoken to in more than a dozen years. BUT... yes, we had one single imaginary friend that came to our tea parties. Her name was Ms. SippyCookie. And, nope, I have no idea what the correct spelling of that is.)

*My brother, on the other hand had his own imaginary friend and that friend had an army! His name was Hossenfeffer and his army was Mechanical Men. Whenever he was accused of some wrongdoing he would always blame Hossenfeffer and his Mechanical Mens.

I got no Mechanical Mens so I'm going to have to do my Dija's myself. I'm on it.



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Sunday

I decided to swim, then stop at Amazon to drop off packages, then stop at the bagel place for a wonderful lox sandwich for breakfast. It all went well until... the bagel place. Closed for Easter. At the risk of being judgy... bagel people Easter? Really? Now, if the sign had said closed for Passover, then ok. But Easter? I'm nit picking because I really wanted that sandwich.

I came home and had poached eggs on toast and fucked up the eggs plus made a mess so I'm now really annoyed with that fucking bagel place.

But, moving on.

Today will be baseball and crocheting although I am getting to the part of my current blanket that is boring and may not be able to hold my interest. This could be a problem because the whole rest of it is like that.

On the up side, this could send me back to the sewing room which wouldn't be all bad.

Spotify is pissing me off. It keeps giving me songs that I not only don't care about, I do not want to hear ... ever. And then, today, it kept fucking up searches for stuff I do want to hear. It is sending me back to Pandora. I got Spotify initially because Pandora couldn't download for offline play and my swim music player needs to be able to play stuff while not hooked up to wifi.

Pandora now has this, and, from what I can tell, it's even slicker than Spotify. I have a year's subscription to Spotify that does not expire until September. So I think I'll put off doing anything until I really can't stand it. Then I might buy a month of Pandora to see if/how it will work for swimming.

Now I need to go clean up the kitchen.




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Happy Saturday

I decided yesterday to skip swimming today. I slept in. Hard and good. Over coffee and a muffin I remembered that the really nice pool has a aqua fit class on Saturday mornings... Google told me that it was still a go and that they still had lap swimming before the class so I thought why the heck not???

The pool is 17 minutes from here with zero traffic so still kind of a slog. But, it didn't matter. I could leave early and do some laps before class which is exactly what I did! The pool itself is huge with a glorious deep end and it has the crystal clear view of chlorinated water. (My regular pool is 4.5 feet at its deepest part and is treated with bromine, not chlorine. Bromine never quite gets the water as clear as chlorine. It's supposed to be easier on your skin but it sure drys out your mouth. It has zero odor and is, I think, easier on swim suits. But I love a chlorinated pool.)

I got about 20 minutes of laps in before the class started. The class was good. The teacher they had for years is gone and the new guy is better. I really enjoyed it and felt like I got a good workout.

I may have found a new Saturday thing.

The down side is that it's exercise that I have to do for free. My tracker does not even acknowledge that I spent an hour flailing around. It would have given my lots of 'steps' if I'd been swimming or cardio points if I had been doing the same on dry land. But, alas, it gave me the same accounting as if I had been taking a nap. Buggers.

After class, I treated myself to Popeye's! And the Dollar Store and I remembered to return my library books.

Then I came home and Hoovered the chicken. I got enough for lunch and dinner so yeah!!

My purchases are all put away and now I think it's time for some TV and crochet.

p-ewwwwww

My fancy assed kitchen garbage can has a holder thing in the lid for a charcoal pouch to absorb the smell. Yesterday was, apparently, that pouch's expiration date. When I first got the fancy assed garbage can, it came with two filters. I put the first one in, expecting nothing.

But, then, one day, the can just started stinking. So I switched it to the second one. I figured it was a fluke. Until today when I learned that it was, in fact, NOT a fluke.

Happily as I typed all that I remembered I had a third one that the company sent me for filling out a survey. Sweet. I mean,literally, not stinky!

I also ordered some replacements from Amazon. I went with diaper pail ones because they are cheaper. If they don't work, I'll pay full price for the ones that do because I'm hoping to be able to forget what stinky garbage smells like!

My tissue box now has a cover. My stack of mending is gone. My crochet blanket is now ready for corners. The center is round and then you add corners and then you crochet a big ass border. Corners are next.

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Remembering

Today's swim was a difficult slog. And soooooo slow. I started out at a slower pace in hopes of having enough breath to make it comfortably. That part worked but it was just a slog the whole way. I did not think up any more body reinventing scenarios. I used a new and different playlist and so just listened to the music and flapped one arm after another.

My car lives in its space in the garage which is one flight of stairs and then an elevator ride below my condo. When I got into the elevator coming home after swimming this morning, I was panting. So out of breath. And it triggered a memory of pretty much this time last year.

COPD is a degenerative condition. I will never get better and will get progressively worse. How progressive? How much worse? No idea but, of course, I constantly look for clues. Is this as good as it will ever be? Or is this just a dip in the action, so to speak.

Last year I had a really bad time after swimming in a pool who's chemicals did not like my lungs. This time last year, I was still recovering, I thought. I had the same breathlessness in the elevator coming up after swimming.

BUT... I did get way better. I also remember months later, one morning when I realized how much better my breathing was.

So I'm thinking I'm allergic to early spring. And, in a month or so, all will be fine. That's what I'm going with. And, also, I'm going to be more vigilant about taking a day off swimming now and again. Like tomorrow.

The caster wheels I ordered from Amazon will work but they are bigger so I'd have to replace all four and it would make the already a hair too tall ottoman, taller still. BUT, except for size, they are identical so I went back to Amazon and found identical in the right size. They will be here today. I'll probably just return the bigger ones. But, at least now, I know I've absolutely got a fix.

Also broken is my tissue box cover. Well, not broken but the tissues I bought at Costco are in a bigger box so the cover does not fit. I like it because it's gray like the chair it sits next to and so just kind of blends in. Turns out I have just enough of that very same fabric to make a cover for the bigger size. So that will be happening this morning.

I have no errands I want or need to run so I think I'm going to just hang here. One of my favorite TV shows - Line of Duty - has a new series coming soon on Acorn.TV so I'm rewatching from the start to get ready. Also the new Bosch series is out on Amazon. And TiVo still has some good stuff waiting. So, I have TV entertainment.

I finished up an audio book last night and the next one is queued and ready. I am still reading the palliative care doctor's book on Kindle and still finding it so interesting. And, I'm way behind on my podcasts. Not enough hours in the day.

Oh, funny swim thing. There's a guy who comes once in a while. He's huge - 6 feet plus with muscles carved out like from marble. And very dark black skin with tatoos. He wears black googles, black spandex swim suit and a swim cap that is bubblegum pink. It's shockingly and hilariously incongruently pink. He got there today about midway into my swim so I had a lot of time to backstory him. At first I thought maybe he was just making a very cool statement. Then I dreamed up his little daughter who was with him when he bought the cap and after winning a bet of some kind, got to chose the color.

He was still swimming when I got out and as he made the turn at the pool's edge, I saw that the cap also had pirate skulls on it and was from triathlon. I was kind of disappointed. I like my version so much better.


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