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Old 05-25-2011, 09:15 PM   #7701
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Bought I bonds on Treasury Direct for the first time. The security gizmos are entertaining.

Finished replumb and replacement of water pressure tank in the cottage crawl space (day 2). More work than a retired person is supposed to do. We have water.
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Old 05-25-2011, 10:11 PM   #7702
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I got rid of the treadmill today. It was a visual reminder of mistakes made (ex-dh2b) and unwanted residue left behind. Did I say that graciously? I really didn't mean to.
It will fetch a good price at the VFW garage sale this weekend, proceeds to go for veterans and their families. Lemonade from lemons.

Mr B and I bought an 8000 BTU window AC unit for the living room at Lowe's, with a nice 10% vets discount to cover the local sales tax. I picked up two hearty looking individual tomato plants, botanically engineered specifically for container growing. There are already tiny blossoms on them. So cute!

I am surfing and chilling out while he tries to troubleshoot a Lexmark printer device driver (Vista shrinkwrap betaware strikes again) problem on a Legion buddy's laptop.
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Old 05-25-2011, 10:24 PM   #7703
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Laundry, prep for a business trip, walk in the park, notifying utilities of upcoming move, and trying to sell unwanted furniture. Antique dealer came by to look at my oak and elm church pew, which is in the hallway and is ideal to sit on for putting on and taking off winter boots!

The dealer will buy it for a few hundred dollars if I can't get rid of it on Kijiji. He told me that, despite a strong housing market here, the bottom has fallen out of the antiques and collectibles market, including art. It's all happened since the recession. People are really questioning the value of "stuff". He told me of one couple who have invested $0.5 m over the years in china. Now they want to sell it. They can expect only 10-15 cents on the dollar.
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Old 05-25-2011, 11:41 PM   #7704
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Another day of retirement bliss.
The hightlights...

Planted 2 palm trees to replace the ones that died over the Winter. Previous home owner had no clue about Winter Kill. Some palms can tolerate colder weather than others. Same with some of the other landscaping. We lost three large bushes and are waiting to see if they can come back or not. BTW, Winter lows here were around the mid-20's for a few days.

Rebuilt the pool floor cleaner (robot). New pods, wings, and feet. Runs like a scalded dog now.

Rebuilt a refrigerator door bin that had a broken tab and would not hold any weight. New bin would have been $40 without shipping. I molded a new tab with epoxy paste; cost $2.50 and a little time.

Surfed the net for a while looking for plastic wicker to repair a damaged chaise lounge (broken by my 260# 16 year old grandson; yes he plays football. ) Conclusion, all this stuff in made in China and like most everything else made there, you cannot get replacement parts. So, I may have to remove all the wicker and redo the entire thing in a new color that I can get. Lots of work so it falls to a lower position on my To Do list.

Did some other domestic tasks and finished up watching TV with DW. Not a bad day. What did not get done today..gets done when I feel like it.

Ahhh, retirement....
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Old 05-25-2011, 11:57 PM   #7705
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Returned my car rental which I had for a week and then immediately rented another car for another week. By doing this, I can take advantage of the $40 per week discount offered by the car rental. I will be doing this again in a week. By doing this, I get $40 per week for 3 weeks instead of just $40 if I didn't break the rental into 3.
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Old 05-26-2011, 06:38 AM   #7706
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Laundry, prep for a business trip, walk in the park, notifying utilities of upcoming move, and trying to sell unwanted furniture. Antique dealer came by to look at my oak and elm church pew, which is in the hallway and is ideal to sit on for putting on and taking off winter boots!

The dealer will buy it for a few hundred dollars if I can't get rid of it on Kijiji. He told me that, despite a strong housing market here, the bottom has fallen out of the antiques and collectibles market, including art. It's all happened since the recession. People are really questioning the value of "stuff". He told me of one couple who have invested $0.5 m over the years in china. Now they want to sell it. They can expect only 10-15 cents on the dollar.
Meadbh, I am late to the party but congrats on selling your home quickly for a satisfactory amount!
There was an article in the WSJ recently about downsizing boomers having trouble selling off heirlooms and other accumulated good quality stuff. People are shocked that their valuables are worth so little upon resale, if they can sell it at all. I have been toying with the idea of selling off part of an antique pocket watch collection that belonged to my late father (passed away in 1982). I sold a portion of the lesser stuff at auction about 5 years ago. The better stuff is gold or coin silver or railroad grade so I might just hold onto it until conditions improve. It's not like it takes up so very much room. Fortunately my father labeled everything laboriously so I have some idea of what I am selling.
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Old 05-26-2011, 12:04 PM   #7707
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We had some bad storms yesterday evening and spent some time in the basement when the local tornado sirens went off. I called our son who moved to an apartment last year to make sure he knew about the warnings and he said he didn't hear the sirens and was just about to go out to pick up dinner. He waited until it was all over. It was interesting to hear what was going on in his neighborhood compared to ours.

We had just finished dinner when we heard the sirens (before the Weather Radio alert went off) and I grabbed my iPod Touch, cell phone, my emergency cash and purse. DH grabbed a flashlight, police scanner and radio. The lights flickered a little but the power did not go off. We always unplug all the computers during storms so that was taken care of earlier.

Our neighborhood came through just fine but a few streets over they had more damage with trees on houses and roofs damaged. I would have loved to stay upstairs and watch the storm but after recent storms and devastating damage in other states I take these things very seriously and I'm glad we have a basement. This one was good practice for "just in case".
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Old 05-27-2011, 06:49 PM   #7708
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Another day mostly flat on my back, reading and surfing with the iPod. Still recovering from bike crash on May 1. Back worse from too much piano.

Leg: Doc said I tore some big muscle and the new bruises that appear represent the blood migrating down through my leg. Nice, huh?

I'm going to avoid practicing for four days.
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Old 05-27-2011, 07:06 PM   #7709
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Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
Another day mostly flat on my back, reading and surfing with the iPod. Still recovering from bike crash on May 1. Back worse from too much piano.

Leg: Doc said I tore some big muscle and the new bruises that appear represent the blood migrating down through my leg. Nice, huh?

I'm going to avoid practicing for four days.
Oh man....with everything going on, it sounds like you and Lena need some pampering.
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Old 05-27-2011, 07:20 PM   #7710
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I went to the hardware store and bought a large bale of BM1 grow mix. I have 2 more Earthboxes to fill and needed to refill a few round containers.
I planted my 2 new container tomatoes, some oregano and spinach from seed, and transplanted my own seed grown jalapeno peppers, all in containers.
My back porch is just like a hothouse with the plexiglas panels still up over the screens. Everything is thriving in the indirect sunlight.
I visited my back yard garden and got tired just thinking about tilling and raking it. I had to be honest with myself and realize that my hands (chronic tendinitis) can no longer support tilling, planting, and weeding a garden of its size.
I think I am going to use the big garden only for large area growing (not small rows), such as fruit bushes, pole beans, pumpkins, and potatoes, and maybe some short season baby seedless watermelons if I can find plants. I'll clear small spaces to plant and let them all grow wild. Survival of the fittest.
My grapevines and blackberry bushes are doing great. The blackberries are spreading (by runner) right across the strawberries, which were almost wiped out by some nasty looking leaf disease last year.
I actually saw some tiny grape clusters forming on the vines.
I have leftover rolls of pea netting to stretch over the mini-vineyard so the birds don't get the grapes before I do.
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Old 05-28-2011, 07:17 AM   #7711
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Today I am buying a lot of vitamins, Tylenol and OTC meds to take to Central America net week where we will run free clinics. I will be gone for about 2 weeks.
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Old 05-28-2011, 07:23 PM   #7712
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Took care of various chores around the house. Spent some time on this website....

https://www.sherwin-williams.com/visualizer/

I was able to upload a pic of my sun room and played with different colors. I made notes of the colors I felt would work well and have decided on one.

Eh....well maybe.
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Old 05-28-2011, 09:04 PM   #7713
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The young wife and I broke out the roadster and drove around the back roads today. We went over to Old Saybrook and ate oysters on the half-shell, lobster salad and crab cakes on a deck over the water at the mouth of the Connecticut River. It was a beautiful day and we watched the boats go up and down the river in front of us as we ate our lunch. On the way back home, we stopped in a few antique stores and then picked up some snacks for dinner (salami, cheese, fruit, port wine, crusty sourdough bread -- mmm, mmm good).

Looking around on the drive today, I was reminded again that we live in such a green and prosperous land, and I am extremely grateful for it.
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Old 05-28-2011, 10:44 PM   #7714
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Today I am buying a lot of vitamins, Tylenol and OTC meds to take to Central America net week where we will run free clinics. I will be gone for about 2 weeks.
Have a safe trip....
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Old 05-28-2011, 11:01 PM   #7715
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I went to Folk Life Festival is Seattle Center. I have gone almost every year for 15 years or so. There is a lot of participatory dancing and music making. I like it because I see and dance with women who I may see only on this weekend.

It seems more local than it has been sometimes. Used to be a good number of people up from Portland or California. It was cold today, but at least sunny and not raining.

Ha
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Old 05-29-2011, 12:43 AM   #7716
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Spouse and I returned from Haleakala Crater on Tuesday afternoon, and the healing is almost finished. I'll put up a blog post on Monday but overall it went much better with proper gear and time to prepare.

Our daughter, now a rising sophomore, finished her 10-day whirlwind Oahu victory tour of old high-school friends, ono local cuisine, and surfing. She's embarked now on NROTC summer training. She's supposed to spend a few days on an aircraft carrier, a destroyer, and a submarine as well as crawling in the mud with the Marines. She'll also get to try out the tactics simulators and the fire/flooding trainers. When she returns to NROTC this fall, if she wants three more years of scholarship then they'll ask her to sign the obligation to serve five years' active duty (plus another three inactive Reserve). It'll be interesting to see how confident she feels about a three-for-eight decision based on a few days of sea duty. She'll be home again in August for a couple weeks.

I just got caught up on 150+ e-mails (during the six days we were off the grid), loaded three blog posts up for next week, started some honey-dos, and got lots of recuperative sleep. No taekwondo for another week but I'll be ready to start working out again on Tuesday.

.....................

And, oh yeah, "The Military Guide" is coming back from the printer's. (The 4"x5" pocket guide is still in press.) You can order the book now from Impact's website, although I haven't heard back yet on the shipping date.

Review copies have gone out to the print & broadcast media. I've noticed that my Twitter feed has been picked up by a magazine subsidiary of the Wall Street Journal. It's possible that there will be some press interest and maybe a new visitor or two on this site. I'll know more after I finish sorting through the 194 updated threads here from the last couple weeks.

As my author's copies arrive in the media mail I'll be sending out a complimentary copy to SamClem, Bob Clyatt, the Kaderlis, Tomcat98, FireUp2020, Deserat, REWahoo!, Arif, Gumby, Hawkeye, BigMoneyJim, CuteFuzzyBunny, Martha, and MickeyD. The word "free" is misleading-- these guys worked hard for it and I owe them far more than just a book for their contributions. Now they're going to be writing book reviews and creating the viral buzz!
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Old 05-30-2011, 02:33 PM   #7717
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I think I'm going to spend today recovering from yesterday's barbecue bloat. Although at lunchtime I might take on a few more leftovers for the cause.

We're spending today hunkered down from the crowds and the traffic. Maybe tomorrow morning I'll venture out for more dawn patrol.

I put up a post (with pictures) of the Haleakala Crater hike. Not exactly what I'd call "most fun vacation", but certainly memorable and enjoyable:
Lifestyles in retirement: Haleakala Crater redux | Military Retirement & Financial Independence

Now spouse and I have to figure out why we keep thinking about going back for more. There's a significant psychological issue brewing in that crucible.
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Old 05-30-2011, 02:43 PM   #7718
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Now spouse and I have to figure out why we keep thinking about going back for more. There's a significant psychological issue brewing in that crucible.
Because you still can . As we age more trips get put aside for medical or mobility reasons so enjoy it while you can !
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Old 05-30-2011, 03:30 PM   #7719
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Great pics and narrative, thanks.
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Old 05-30-2011, 08:06 PM   #7720
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I was an American citizen today.

Mr B and I attended a Memorial Day parade and remembrance ceremony in Clinton NY, complete with a USAF active duty Honor Guard and an American Legion Color Guard. The speakers of the day were a Legion Commander (Mr B), a VFW Commander, the Town Mayor, a County Legislator, and a USAF LtCol who is a veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan.
I saw families with young children holding flags, all lined up along Main Street. Veterans saluted the colors and everone clapped when the volunteer fire department, the Legion Riders on motorcycles, the local Boy Scout Troop, and the antique John Deere tractors rolled by.
We all stood and said the Pledge of Allegiance, all in unison with no protests against or court orders prohibiting our freedom to gather in public and speak the words we wanted to. Hats were removed and hands were placed over hearts.
Wreaths were placed at the granite monuments for the WWII, Korean and Vietnam war vets, and the LtCol read off the names of the deceased local vets for those declared wars and all other conflicts thereafter.

Sometimes the return to the basics can be very uplifting.

Here are the Color Guard and some of the Officers of the American Legion Post 232. Mr B is at the far right.
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