Notes from all over

I’ve been so busy lately, I don’t know whether to shit or go blind. So, here’s today’s catch-up post, in bulleted format.

– Declan had his tenth-year checkup today. He is 57″ tall (85th percentile), 101 lbs (95th percentile). His weight has actually come down a few percentage points since we changed our eating habits, so the doctor’s pretty happy about that. Decky also got his flu shot. Doctor says it’s too early to start his HPV series, but as soon as it’s time, I’m on it. I took Declan out to Panera for lunch to ameliorate the pain from the shot, and now he’s back at school, no doubt showing everyone his bandaid.

– We had Ron, Nina and Matthew out to visit from Chicago this past weekend. Bill was freaking-out-stressed-to-the-max and I was dreading what would be an “All Hail King Bill!” weekend, but it went really well. They’re great good people, and we felt so comfortable with them. I hope they felt the same. It was just so special and nice and wonderful to have Chicago voices and attitudes out here in Kansas. Say what you will about Chicago people, but what you see is what you get – no putting on airs, no pretending or posturing. It was a breath of fresh air to hang out with real people. I hope they come out again soon, and for a longer visit.

– I finally finished painting my powder room last week (just in time for company). I had taken down the wallpaper, spackled and repaired the drywall surface, sanded it to a smooth finish, then painted it a rich cocoa brown. It looks brand-new and beautiful! Now, which bathroom do I tackle next?

– The deck is no more. They demolished it last week, and now it feels like we live on a cliff. It’s very naked out there. The guys were kind enough to leave us a big pile of decking that the boys can use for future Fire Nights. This week, utilities will be marked and holes will be dug. After inspection by the city, the building will proceed. I have no problem being patient with this process, since we hope to pay for the rest of it with Bill’s December 1st bonus. When it’s done it will be bigger, stronger and prettier. I am really looking forward to seeing the finished result. And I’m already sick of walking the dogs all the time.

– Decky’s Birthday Month is just about over! A party in Chicago, a weekend trip to Omaha, a Fire Night celebration on his actual birthday, and I think we’re finally done. Whew! I’m exhausted. What a happy, lucky boy he is.

– Our volunteer lone pumpkin and two squash are ready for harvest. Owen will help me put the garden to bed today and Wednesday. We all went to the pumpkin farm this weekend for our requisite wheelbarrow-full-of-pumpkins. This week we’ll carve them for display on Halloween. Decky still hasn’t figured out what he’ll dress up as. Harry Potter is under consideration.

– Bill is still losing weight. He’s starting to train for a half-marathon in June (13.1 miles!). I envy his willpower and strength. I find myself falling into old unhealthy patterns lately. Time to get back on the wagon. I bet a day of green smoothies will start me on my way. Tomorrow. πŸ™‚

– I got my raise, and although it’s only retroactive a few weeks, I am glad that mess is done with. I also was able to have a friend cover my Thanksgiving shift. This will fulfill my major holiday obligation for the year, and I will get to go to Chicago for Thanksgiving as I had hoped. I win!

– Broke the old carpet shampooer, bought a new one. I swear we go through one a year, we use it so much. I warned Bill that we will soon no longer have enough carpet left to shampoo. We’ll have to recarpet next year, I think. Ugh. It never ends.

– I was informed by our weekend guests that Ryan’s old room in the basement is now the Putting Room or the Golf Room. The boys have erected a putting green with a large dinosaur on it. More holes are planned.

– I have many icky apples from last week’s apple picking in Iowa. I plan to make homemade applesauce and apple butter. I like to use apple butter instead of fat in my baked goods, so that will be wonderful. Boy will the house smell good Wednesday, when the wind whips up and the temperature drops, and we’re in the kitchen working!

– Gary the Cat is determined to leave this place. He darts for the door each time it’s opened. He’s speedy fast, too!

– Time to go use the new shampooer to clean up the mess the old shampooer made. TTYL.

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