Winter Weather, Work Plans, and 2022 Bucket List Reveal

We ended up getting a couple of inches, but I took this once the snow started to cover the ground. I was really surprised that we got so much less. Then I thought for sure I’d be at work Monday. However, the reports from news was that roads were fine on main roads, not fine on secondary and overpasses and on ramps, etc. All of my route to work is on secondary routes. The interstates are dangerous on a regular day, lol. So since I had all my stuff at home and it was a good day to do so, I just worked from home. The only thing I couldn’t do was print, but I will do those this morning. It’s all ready to go. Now this morning fog has moved in and we are in the 20’s and black ice has formed so I’m just going in when the sun comes up and that gives other motorists that are more adventurous time to heat up those roads for me. And the sun will help. So therefore, it gives me blog time this morning. Going in early for Mom’s doc appointment (make up time) doesn’t really matter so much this month. I will be working around the clock from now til end of month to get QE/YE returns and w-2 reporting done. I have developed a plan in the last 24 hours, with the help of God’s leadership to get it done. And I can tell you that every force on earth (mostly non-intentional unless Satan is behind it nonchalantly) has been trying to usurp my time so that I cannot get it done. But I have a plan now.

So I set up a makeshift office in the bedroom. Here we are yesterday before the sun is even up good – around 6 or 6:30 – complete with sausage and egg biscuit leftover from the day before. I was amazed that I was able to get not only my daily list done and also do some tax returns, but was able to work longer hours from start to finish while including laundry, washing dishes, and being able to eat lunch at home and work on Roger’s tribute for an hour. It was great.

So now that this desk is set up, my plan is to work on Sunday from home – who knows I might also be working from home Thursday as we have another system coming through if it messes up everything that morning. I have to leave in time to get Mom to her heart appointment anyway. We’ll see what happens. Anyway, I also have the following weekend also to work on returns so it makes me feel better to be able to do these at home where I can intermittently stop and do laundry or work on things I need to at home. It helps with the synergy of getting it ALL done instead of just compartmentalizing all of it. I also may bring a couple of returns home to work in the evenings of the last week of January if it appears that things are really not going to happen by the 31st. I have a copier box to wag my calculator and files in. A brief case is not big enough. But at least I don’t have to wag the monitor back and forth. I just told IT during COVID – just know that I have monitor, keyboard (actually I think the keyboard was George’s), mouse, and a blue ethernet cord. So I will keep this set up going I guess through the end of the month. I know it can snow in Feb and March but I’ll probably go ahead and put it up and just get it back out again if needed once QE/YE returns and reporting is done.

Sunday I made pork stew. It was a different recipe. Matter of fact I didn’t really go by a recipe 100% but I did peek at one for ingredients. I added tomato paste in it and made a roux of sorts with flour, tomato paste, olive oil, balsamic glaze, cinnamon honey, red wine, Worcestershire sauce. I can’t say that it started out well. I don’t think I seared the beef right and some of the saucy tomato paste mix kinda burnt in the pan a little (oops). It’s just different from the way I normally build up my soups and stews. I don’t usually include flour and tomato paste when searing the meat, just onions and salt and pepper and olive oil. So that was interesting. But anyway, I added chicken broth as that is what we had and let it cook for an hour or so. Then I added potatoes and carrots and let them cook for an hour or so. Then I added little green peas and let it cook for 30 min or so. We enjoyed the stew for a couple of days.

How Did We do on the Fall thru Christmas Bucket List?

We checked off quite a few things. It’s impossible to get all the restaurants and excursions checked off but we like to have them on the list in case we should find ourselves with free time and need to get out and do something or work a restaurant in here and there when we can with friends and family.

I didn’t get to spend time with camera lessons or do a fall photo shoot. Just no time for that. I know enough to get photos and videos taken so I have a tendency to ignore it and keep it on manual settings. When I do the lessons I forget what I have learned. But I’m not giving up. I’ll keep trying. It’s a hopefully one day kind of item, along with a lot of other things that I’ve not tried to force. We didn’t have time to shop local shops for Christmas but had to shop where we found ourselves and also on line as we had time. We did a lot of shopping in Waynesville, NC though and in Knoxville on our trip.

We got tires for George, tires for Mom, got mother/daughter mammograms, lol. We hosted a great family Christmas, had a pretty good Thanksgiving as well. I learned a new way of setting challenges. We celebrated birthdays. So it was a good and busy quarter, not to mention setting Mom up in a new household and taking her shopping numerous times for appliances, beds, etc. We accomplished a lot. So there’s how the bucket list turned out and here’s the new one.

2022 Winter into Spring Bucket List

I was able to get this done Sunday and was excited to get it done. I can see I need to check of “pork stew” as I did it already. I think we have a pretty good line up of fun stuff. I love having this list and being able to check things off of it. It’s fun to write down things you would like to do, accomplish, and watch it come to fruition.

Taking George on the Antioch excursion is “taking him to see where I work”. I think it’s important for a spouse to know where you are and envision you in your work space. There is a tea shop a friend told me about nearby and she thought I’d like it. Slim and Husky’s is a pizza place nearby as well. We’ll make a day out of it. And check the area out. Sounds like a good Saturday or Sunday excursion. Hopefully Yellowstone, Good Girls, Ozark, and Flight Attendant’s next seasons will be out. Currently we are watching Manifest and Imposters, both of which are very good and keeping our interest.

At some point in Spring, I’ll do a summer one. Or Spring/Summer. I will consider in April doing the next quarter or I can leave this going until Summer. I may just do that for the sake of time. Here’s where I post our bucket list. It’s on the edge of our kitchen in a blank spot by the basement door. George also has a list of restaurants that we made about a year ago when deciding where to go for Valentine’s Day.

We have decided we are doing Asian for Valentine’s Day – cheap and not as many crowds. We have our foodie friends booked for a Saturday in February! Katy is looking at places to stay for our March trip to Hot Springs (please Lord no spring snows on spring break).

I always include George in on the bucket list as he enjoys crossing things off. Mostly it is created by me and includes my goals. He throws in wineries, breweries, restaurants, etc.

Lots of things to look forward to.

So I’m going to finish getting ready and head to work. I am waiting for the sun to shine so I can see icy patches and other cars can kinda melt the ice off before me. I have to go over a pretty long bridge over the lake so that kinda scares me as this freezing fog settles in. The sun will burn it off but I don’t feel like I can wait til 9 to go in, so I’ll just wait on the sunrise at least. Maybe that will help. I’ve asked God for protection.

Do you have a bucket list? Whether you do or not, do you have a list of things you want to do, places you want to go, or things to accomplish within the next three months? I’d love to hear them! Even if they are in your head and thought about, you can still accomplish them. But for me writing it down helps make it happen. Since there are two of us, we can see what each other’s goals are and help each other to work it in our busy schedule. If you haven’t done this, it’s fun to do!

Coffee Malfunctions of the Third Degree and George’s Book Reading List

Photo by Lood Goosen on Pexels.com

Thank God for Saturdays! But how hard is it to make a cup of coffee? I’ve made coffee now for 40 years and only a very few mornings did it malfunction. George and I are 0 for 3 this morning!

  1. For whatever reason, I failed to put water in this morning. I know that coffee takes water. So it is Alzheimers? Did the cat distract me? Was I just so excited about having a weekend with no responsibilities so I could get my life together? Am I just too worried about quarter end? Or is it the excitement over the coming snow? Whatever the reason, I failed to put water in and just added coffee, hit the button, and began doing laundry.
  2. George comes in and says “what’s up with the coffee?”. I say “whaddya mean”? He says “it’s cold from yesterday”. Baffled, I realized I had put the coffee in but didn’t put water in so it was huffing and spitting and nothing was squeezing out. So George puts in water, hits the ON button and goes to the back of the house.
  3. I come out of the laundry room with clothes and discover coffee on the counter EVERYWHERE and shout “oh no” and throw the clothes over a chair and race for towels as the coffee reaches the edge. The coffee is squirting horizontally out of the top like someone shooting a water gun filled with coffee instead of going down into the pot! I hit the OFF button to stop the spraying. I realize that George had not put the pot in the proper position so coffee was squirting sideways. George races in and says “Oh good, it’s just the coffee, the cat didn’t poop in the house, so that is good!” We reposition the coffee pot and finish the clean up and each resume our tasks at hand as we await the wonderful hot morning brew. I murmer something about being 0 for 2.
  4. About 10 minutes passes, I’m changing the sheets on the bed when George comes in with a small white cup of coffee for each of us about half filled. He says, “well, I think we are 0 for 3” because we forgot to turn the coffee pot back ON so nothing else brewed. But this much had managed to get in the bottom of the pot from the squirting. So we are enjoying our little cup now. I suppose we will let the restaurant make the next cup when we do brunch today out, lol. Perhaps they will have a better hand at making it today.

All I can say is Wow. We manage to do so much in life. We have 4 degrees between us, have professional positions, have raised a wonderful daughter, consider ourselves to have fairly good noggins most of the time and have accomplished much in our lifetime, but between the two of us have proven today that it is a challenge for us to simply make a cup of coffee.

George’s Reading List

You asked for it and I’m providing! Someone wanted to know what all George is reading. So here is a list of recent books that he has read in the past few weeks OR is reading currently. I’m amazed he could list them off the top of his head. I would have to go look at my stack. However, I don’t have all the authors on these, but shouldn’t be hard to find or google if interested. I believe you will be amused at his eclectic interests. He often has 5 or 6 that he reads at once so that he picks the one that suits his mood.

  • Biography of Jerry West – about a basketball player
  • Talking Guitar
  • The Drinkable Globe (an alcohol book, lol)
  • Amazing Spiderman Omnibus (comic book)
  • Louis Grizzard’s “I haven’t understood Anything Since 1962”
  • A Stephen Coontz spy thriller – sorry no title – it’s in his car and he couldn’t remember

And drum roll…..the best saved for last:

  • “Who Cut the Cheese?: A Cultural History of Farts”

Aren’t you glad you asked? George is. He is thrilled you all wanted to know and doubly thrilled that he happened to be reading the “fart book” at the time!

Forecast Changes

So the forecast has now changed from 5-8 inches to 1-3 inches. lol. I have hauled half my office home to work for Monday. I was going to go ahead and set up the office and be ready to go for Monday. Right now I think I’ll just wait and see. I’d rather go in if I can, to work, because work is easier from there. It’s pain in the butt usually from home and everything takes twice as long. Mainly because I can’t print and partly because a lot of my files are at work.

This morning we are going to take neighbors for brunch and we are looking forward to that. Despite the coffee antics this morning, I have at least changed sheets and rebooted laundry, however, we have created even more laundry now, so coffee soaked towels are next on the laundry queue.

Excitement

Do you know how excited I am to have this day. I know that everyone that claws at my time would love to have a piece of my weekend, but everyone is going to have to be patient while I pull my life back together from the past month of __________________(fill in the blank here: FT work 9-10 hours a day plus commute, 2 travel trips, 3 sets of family in town, fun, shopping for/preparing for/and hosting Christmas, some surprise virus/flu like illness for both of us :-O, running Mom errands, New Year holiday, burying a family pet (that was so sad for all), work stress, time stress, “drama with ya mama stress”, and five family birthdays). I am sure I could go on, but that’ll do it. So YES, I NEED this mental health weekend. I’ll be able to come on strong, come Monday. When you feel OWNED by the world, it’s time to take a step back because YOU are NO good for NO one if you are not in a good spot yourself.

I don’t think that even our own family realizes the time pressures and stresses we have been under – even though we have had some fun times we have really been moving at lightning speed not getting time to do much more than sleep, eat, and do it all again. I know a lot of people go through this at the holidays. But it seemed to be on steroids this year. We did make it fun but it has been a busy wild ride of a month. We got through it. Not through Quarter End/Year End yet. Still undetermined how that will play out as next week have like zero time to work on it, so some weekend work for me next week. I’m just not set up at all for success next week. I’m busting my butt but even with weekends not quite sure how it will all play out. I will die trying. The January trip thing is just not a good month for me to travel. This job is never good for me to be off but January makes it very hard. We are shooting for Thanksgiving week again this year. It seemed to be perfect the time before. The lesser of evils.

Alright, so I’m off to get some things done in my life: Organization, going through mail, putting up things, cleaning things and getting things back to normal. Doing all these things that have been calling my name as I see them in my house. What a gift of time the Lord has given us in this weekend. Thank you Lord for this little hibernation weekend! Thank you again and again!

We Saw Sasquatch and Change of Plans Due to Next Weather System

There’s been a Sasquatch sighting in the woods behind our house near the graveyard! One day George and I will go out there on a Sasquatch hunt and video it. 😉 Looks like he has plans for Mardi Gras! Our neighbors put this up and it is so funny. You can see him when you drive by the neighborhood as there is light shining on him. As a kid my grandfather took me to see Sasquatch at the movie theaters. My Mom and Nanny really didn’t want him to take me but he convinced them it was just a fun nature show. And it was. I always envisioned him being up above the Washington state area and up among Canada. But now, according to the gift shops in Western North Carolina – apparently he has been seen in that area as the gift shops are full of Sasquatch products there: T-shirts, mugs, investigative kits, lol.

This is amusing. Apparently we are either collecting “pi’s” or we came home with River’s electrical outlet cover. Yes, the latter is true. We plugged our cell phones up and I remember Katy saying “where is the outlet cover”. She found another one I think. I guess it got caught up in George’s things. lol. But now we know where it went.

Changes of Plans

So……we have this big snow storm coming now. It’s arriving Saturday evening and lasting for a day into Sunday evening. I plan then, to work at home Monday. Tuesday it should be in the 40’s and hopefully can go in and get payroll done.

Susan and Kevin have decided not to come this weekend as they were traveling from Knoxville. The meteorologists and weather service warnings are saying 4-8 or 3 – 7 respectively. Some models showing up to a foot where snow banding occurs. So….ummmm…I guess we are going to get some unexpected free time this weekend. Don’t get me wrong, I was looking forward to our guests coming and even invited them to get snowed in with us. But for obvious safety travel reasons they decided not to come this way. So our weekend has opened up. I can truly say I NEED an open weekend “stuck at home” to be able to get some things done around here. I think God is looking out for me. I prayed for some down time, where my brain can catch up with life, where I don’t have to go anywhere and can just ENJOY a DAMN DAY at HOME! AMEN! Sorry for the curse word but I’ve not had time around here to do anything. I need a rest day – a piddle around day (Sybil & Mary —Sybil laughs b/c to “piddle” in UK is to pee). It probably means that here too but people use it loosely in the US (possibly mostly in the south) meaning that to “piddle around” is to “do what we want around the house”. Sorry to curse and use the word “damn” but I mean that is how strongly I need a day at home. I’m trying to be patient with January.

What will I do with the time now that the weekend opened up?

  • Change our sheets
  • Put the Christmas Trees up
  • Dust
  • Vacuum
  • Fix breakfast
  • Watch a YouTube show
  • Put up some Christmas Gifts
  • Put back out the normal Nic Naks
  • Forget the outside world exists
  • Clean my office
  • Record Roger’s Video
  • Do a Target Order
  • Order some things on Amazon (spending birthday money, gift cards, and Amazon Reward dollars)
    • At the end of the year George and I split the Amazon point money and buy ourselves something, lol. 😉
  • Do the Winter into Spring Bucket List
  • Go through Mail
  • Empty Trash Cans in all the rooms (like my office etc.)
  • Cancel Isagenix Autoship
  • Order my next Audible book
  • Plan next week (find Mom a hair cut place after hours)
  • Dismantle the bed in the office
  • Put up the Christmas China back into the cabinet
  • I’m sure there are other things I’ve not thought of yet but on my list

Once I get those things done I can start the next wave of projects. But right now I look around and longingly want to do things, but have to stay on task to doing the most important things – like laundry, food for work, or getting ready for the next thing that is about to happen, or sleep, or trying to meet everyone’s needs.

Last night we watched a show while eating salad and soup. We are watching Imposter’s and it’s really good! Little Bit came and sat in my lap. But by end of show, I was starting to drift off.

Quarter end is coming along slowly. We are still trying to get it to balance. Most of the afternoon yesterday we worked on it. We found two issues. One where someone’s address was changed to their new state when they moved and the system didn’t have that state set up so the wages/taxes/insurance did not tabulate in the proper state and made the wages off. Typically they are supposed to wait til after there is no pay to change the address. I kinda new that would be an issue and even mentioned it, but people do what they want, so address was changed and it caused a problem. And the other is a coding or programming thing where insurance is making the gross number lower – but gross should just be gross. I think it’s programmed wrong. Bottom line, numbers didn’t match from one part of the system to another and it was the insurance amount. And there are still some things off balance but we ran out of day.

Today I will do my Friday things for payroll and then dive into QE. But I will also be packing a box of files and my calculator and taking a bunch of things home. It’s a haul to be able to work from home. I am in a lot of files and also I can’t print from home. So it’s a big mess to keep up with everything that needs to be printed when you go back. It’s not efficient. But technically I can’t afford to lose any more days from work. Next week is ALREADY shot down with a legal meeting and two days of doc appts back to back meaning I’ll have to leave at lunch both days. One day is already made up as I already go in early on Tuesday’s. And I’ve probably already made up the other day this month already by skipping lunch every day and staying 30 min to an hour later every day. But geez. Now this snow day for Monday. My life. Oh my gosh. But what can you do? Embrace it and go. lol

So I’m going to get off of here now and make sure I still have my keyboard, mouse, ethernet cord, and everything to hook up to the internet. Big sigh. But I’m plowing forward and trying to make the best of it. And I fully intend on embracing this suddenly free weekend and working on some things that have been howling out to me to do.

So, are you going to be impacted by this next weather system coming through?