Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Procrastination Post

I am home today with a cold and am supposed to be doing my income taxes.  I think I have all the information that I need, although inevitably there will be at least one missing piece.  The paperwork is sitting on the table, nothing filled out so far, although I did do some calculations the other day, adding up things that are additions or will be subtractions.  That's really the hard part.  Today all I need to do is put the info into the right place on the forms.

Meanwhile, I am sitting here at the computer rather that getting to work on the taxes.  Yesterday I had no internet connection and no phone service, as they are all on my wireless connection.  That went kaput, so I was stuck.  Comcast did send a tech out, after several conversations convinced them that the problem could not be solved over the phone.  The tech fixed the system temporarily, but said that when the weather warms up, they will have to come out and put in a new cable.  Evidently they can do this whether I am home or not. I just hope that the temporary cable lasts until they can come out to put in the new one.  It could be a month or more, considering the weather we've been having this winter.

Today the sun is shining and melting the ice on my car's windshield.  Always nice to have Mother Nature working in my favor for a change.  The dusting of snow we got last night just covered up the ice.  And out front, the ice seems to have melted.  I just hope it doesn't rain today and freeze up tonight.  Don't think rain is predicted, so perhpas we will be ok for a while.  I've really had all the winter I want this year.

My deck, in back of the house, doesn't get any sun in the winter, so it is still snow-covered. I've been throwing seed for the birds out onto a semi-cleared path from my doorway.  The birds must be really hungry becasuse they have been coming right up to the door to get the seeds I spilled on the door mat.  I should get my boots on and go out and fill the feeders.  Maybe I"ll do that later.  This morning I'm being lazy.

In the living room, I have an amarilys (how is that work spelled?) starting to bloom.  This plant was given to me a number of years ago and it faithfully blooms every winter.  I put it outside for the summer, bring it inside in the fall, leave it alone for several months and then start watering it again.  Voila!  It blooms!  In full bloom, it will have 4 blooms coming from the single stalk.  Very impressive.

Thursday, February 13, 2014


Since I am snowbound today, it seems like a good time to put up another post on my blog.  We got about a foot of snow last night and a bit more this morning, but nothing coming down just now.  What I worry about is freezing rain, which is still a possibiity today and tonight.  That is what brings down tree limbs and power lines.  As long as I have electricity, I am fine, but if the power goes off it will be darn cold in my house!

At this moment, I am watching birds and a squirrel argue over the bird seed that I have thrown on my deck.  There are cardinals,bluejays, juncos, starlings and sparrows out there just now.  I also have the occassional titmouse and chickadee.  Haven't seen the woodpecker today, but I put a suet cake out yesterday, so perhaps he (she?) will arrive later.  Birds are very entertaining, but it's not cheap entertainment.  I spend a fair amount on seed for the birds, especially in the winter.  There is a sale at the bird store on Saturday, so I hope to stock up then.  That's assuming I won't be still snowed in, of course.

I just looked out front and two of my neighbors' teenagers are shoveling my sidewalk.  I had planned to shovel later, so now I feel guilty that I didn't get out there sooner.  I actually enjoy shoveling snow - at least in small doses.   I told the boys that they could stop and I would do the rest, but they seem to be persistent.  I don't know these neighbors very well.  They are renters who moved less than a year ago and I seldom see them.  I think they are from Africa or the West Indies because their English has a definite accent.  I have a little trouble understanding them.  I'll have to bake something and take it over to them - brownies maybe.

My computer is giving me problems.  Recently, I actually took it to Best Buys where a Geek Squad member tested it and found nothing wrong.  He said the trouble is with Comcast and perhaps I need a new router.  He suggested that if I wanted a really good router, I could buy one at Best Buys, but he wasn't pushy about it.  I will call Comcast soon - after the snow goes away.  The only current probem is that loading anything is slow and I can't watch youtube or suchlike because they load up very slowly.  It's like the way my computer worked before I got wifi.  I think we don't realize how dependent we are on our computers until they aren't working properly.  Of course today, with no newspaper, I am especially dependent upon the computer for my news.

I am planning several trips this spring - to Florida in March and Arizona in April.  I spent hours on the computer recently trying to find a 'cheap' fare to Florida and coordinate that with a shuttle bus service that runs from Orlando to several cities on the East Coast (including Vero Beach, where I want to go).  I finally did get it all worked out and all will be well as long as we don't get another snow storm on the day I'll be leaving.  I'm keeping my fingers crossed - or at least I would be, but I can't type that way!!

This past weekend, my former husband, Andy, was a guest at my house.  His brother has cancer, so Andy and Robert (Andy's son) drove up from Hampton, VA to see him.  Andy and I are still friends, so it wasn't a problem having him stay here.  He took me out to dinner at a local steak house on Saturday night.  We are both showing our age - neither of us could finish our dinners.  And, by 10 PM, we were each ready for bed. The only problem for me with having company is that I get very tired of talking.  I'm not used to having someone around for a day and a half.  My house is quiet most of the time and it's really odd for me to be sitting there making conversation.

Monday night, I went to a book club meeting.  I have just joined this club and only know two of the members.  They are all women about my age and very friendly.  The book we discussed was TransAtlantic by Colum McCollough (I can't spell his name).  It was a very interesting book and we all liked it.  This book club will be good for me, as it will force me to do some semi-serious reading instead of the mysteries and romances I read all the time.  I'm having trouble getting a copy of the next book.  It's "Boys in a Boat"  and is connected to past Olympics.  Perhaps that is why all the copies are reserved.  I'm 17th on the list at the Howard County Libraries and 3rd in the Laurel Library (PG County).  Hopefully, I'll get a copy from one of these lists before March 10, which is the next meeting.