December stuff

Keeping in good spirits during the holidays can be challenging. My Decembers are difficult every year in both old and new ways, but also brings reflective moments and reminders of all there is to be thankful for.

That being said, here’s the good, the bad, and the whatever for my holiday update.

To start, I was graced with more funky health issues. For unknown reasons, I have recently been waking up with an extremely light head and very nauseated stomach that affects me throughout the day. I don’t think it’s vertigo again, as there isn’t any of the usual room spinning dizziness when I turn my head a certain way. It’s a strange “floaty” feeling in my head, blurry vision, and not able to walk a straight line for a bit after I stand up. The addition of nausea and lack of appetite aren’t too much fun either. Not knowing what’s wrong is especially disconcerting, so I may need to get an appointment with the doctor soon if there’s no improvement. Trying to research my issues online only scares me, and tends to inflict a sense of impending doom. Honestly, I’m not sure why I keep doing it.

Mom didn’t spend Christmas with us after all. I had my hopes up, but just like every year, she found an excuse to not spend the holidays with me. This year it was, “I can’t, I’m too crippled.” She has pain issues, but she isn’t much worse than when she visited over the summer. It was just Mom being Mom again, and choosing to be solitary and miserable as usual. I finally gave up on trying to get her to spend Christmas with us, and we brought my stepdaughter home for the holidays instead. It was nice to have someone not only willing, but happy to come to our house for a Christmas visit. The mini tree I put in the guest room was not lonely after all.

Mom will be 90 on New Year’s Eve, so I don’t know how many more chances I’ll have to spend Christmas with her, if any. Thinking about it makes me extremely sad, but such are the choices she makes for herself, and I have to accept that.

We had a pretty good, though mostly non – eventful holiday here at the tin can. It didn’t feel a lot like Christmas for a few reasons, but we still enjoyed the time the three of us spent together, being lazy and silly. It was “family time,” which is something I have had very little of in my life, so every bit of it means the world to me.

As usual, we didn’t do a lot of gift exchanging, but we were good with that. We took Kateline to get her hair done, and I gave Bobby a “Grateful Dude” hoodie I had found in honor of his new religion. (Dudeism.) I think he was pleased with it.

We were a little bummed that he had to work on Christmas, but he was able to come home from work early with a new buddy for me, which was a fun surprise.

One of my favorite parts of this month was helping our newly “adopted” daughter Codi get a much needed new cage for her 3 beautiful pet rats. She was so happy, and thanked me in the sweetest ways. Her babies did, too.

She gave me a gift from the rats that she said she found in their cage, and they had wrapped it themselves. It was a really cool salt rock, which I happen to love. I do believe my heart was successfully melted. Gestures that truly come from the heart never fail to turn me into a big pile of mush.

Anyway, the roller coaster ride of December and 2018 is almost over. It’s about time to see what 2019 has in store – and fingers are crossed for the best.

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An ancient one

20181211_1354541429356547.jpgWe’ll always love our little old tin can by the sea, in spite of it’s issues. Some aren’t too bad, some are. One of the more significant and unfortunate faults has been the plumbing. From the time we moved in, bathing has been a rather funky experience. Showers were always far from pleasant. The water was bi polar, continually fluctuating from hot to cold. There was no lingering and leisurely washing up, it was a race to finish and jump out before the spray turned to ice water. Taking a bath was out of the question, with barely enough hot water to put in our eyes, let alone fill a tub. It’s sucked, but it’s one of those things you just deal with when rent is super cheap, and the view and neighborhood happen to be absolutely gorgeous.

Over the last weekend, our water suddenly got scorching hot, then went ice cold.  We figured the element finally went belly up, and contacted the landlord to send out a plumber. They showed up this morning at 8 am, to begin 3 hours of work in pouring rain and strong wind. (Our water heater is quite oddly located in a panel on the outside of the house.) As I was waking up, Bobby informed me that we were not only getting a new element, but a whole new water heater to go along with it. Looking outside, I could see why that was necessary. Our dead water heater sat sadly in the back of the plumbing van, as if it were in a hearse taking it to the water heater cemetery.  It looked to be at least 48 years old, (as old as our house) which is fairly ancient in water heater years. I imagine it served this house well in it’s early days, and almost felt as if I should salute it for such. Goodbye, old soldier. Thanks for what little hot water you managed to give us in the final stages of your existence, it was better than no hot water at all. RIP.  (Cue the somber sound of Taps being played.)20181211_1356191255267605.jpgThat being said, I’m greatly looking forward to a nice, hot shower today. There will also be an attempt at a first bath soon which I’m very excited about. Who knows, I might even blog about the bath. (Don’t worry, I won’t scare anyone with photos.) 😀

Ah, the joys of functioning appliances. Never, ever take them for granted. 🙂

 

Feeling festive

It’s that time of year again.

I discovered this cool version of The Grinch the other day, so I figured I’d post it for fun. It’s a new addition to my favorite Christmas songs, which I hope to be listening to as I get my tree and decorations up next week. Since I’ve been sick with a bad lung infection for a while, decking our halls will be a slow process.  But I’m actually excited about Christmas this year, as it’ll be the first one I’ve spent with my mom since I was a kid. (If we can get her to our house – depending on weather and road conditions.)

Anyway…more to come later, when I’m feeling a little better.

 

 

Evil bandits

I heard a noise on the front porch tonight, and looked outside to discover a thief in action.

It seems our poor birds are being robbed blind by the little masked Gollum creatures that live under our house.

My clapping, stomping, and yelling of – “shoo, get your furry ass out of there!” did not phase him one bit. He just gave me a dirty look and kept on stuffing his face.

I think I may need to take more drastic measures to solve the problem. 🙄

Camera test

20181020_2153331863412361.jpgMichael gave me a very cool birthday present last month – his old Nikon D50. (Thanks again Michael, you rock! )

I was thrilled to finally get a professional camera, after years of using my phone and/or the little point and shoot models. It matters little to me that the camera is fairly dated, limited in function, and only 6 MP.  It doesn’t take away from how truly awesome it is to have a good quality piece of equipment to practice photography on.  I’m thinking of getting a better zoom lens for it, but it’s fun to play with as is. I’m also learning my way around it quickly.

Today was ideal for a scenic fall drive, and to give the new camera a brief test spin. So, we headed down to Newport Bay, then continued on Yaquina Bay drive into Toledo. We discovered a little country cemetery out there, but did not have much time to spend as the day was growing late. We plan to go out that way again soon, and also visit another cemetery out in that area. I’d also like to spend some time taking some photos of the bay front, among other things. I hope we continue to be graced with these gorgeous, sunny, 70 degree fall days for a while. They’re perfect for photography adventures.

Oh, and as for the test results? I think they speak for themselves.

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My hobby should be…

I’m always doing these little quizzes for the hell of it. Usually the results are totally off base, but once in a while they nail things right on the head.

Kind of like this. And naturally, I had to blog all about it. 😏

Based on your results your hobby should be….

Blogging

You don’t get out much so you stay in and blog about everything that basically comes to your mind. Nothing is off limits when it comes to you. You will talk about any and everything, and your followers love you for that.

Well…I don’t post as often as I’d like. And I tend to doubt that I’m loved for my blogging style. Otherwise, this was a pretty accurate little quiz thingie.

Seagull feast

As I was sitting on the cliffs last week, my neighbor from across the street came along with his two little dogs and a loaf of bread in hand.

He explained that he usually gives all his stale bread to the seagulls, but didn’t want to feed them near his house anymore because of the birds pooping everywhere. I found this amusing, as I’ve refrained from feeding the seagulls from my old porch since we’ve moved here, and he lives in a much nicer house that he’s selling for over half a million dollars.

They saw him coming, of course, and dozens of gulls flew up from the cove in a split second. It was so cute that I didn’t have the heart to mention to the kind old man how bad it is to feed bread to birds.

However, I might try bringing something a little healthier for them on occasion, like leftover scraps of chicken, fish, rice, fruit, and/or veggies. It would be interesting to see if they’d find the different food to be a disappointment or a delight.