How Much Slower Can One Go?

Believe it or not, it’s now the end of February 2018 and I’m only now going to see the dental surgeon on the 28th. I started this whole bloody process in November of 2017 hoping to have my teeth done by Christmas. That was wishful thinking.  I’m totally frustrated, anxious and stressed out and if this whole process is not done before the end of March I’m going to scream and write to the CDA to let them know that I can get major surgery done faster than dental surgery. That’s saying a lot with the huge lack of good medical doctors in this province.

While waiting for my dental surgery, I’ve actually had to give up on my sister’s web site. Totally frustrated with my lapse of knowledge and along with new design structures for WordPress I became stressed again. Trying really hard to keep my blood pressure down for health reasons, I had to admit my technical skills have gone and my brain is devoid of any creative thinking. Damn. My brain only allows me the skills of a now official senior citizen. My crossword days are waning, my patience for needlework is waning and even keeping up my blog with wild and crazy schemes hubby and I have gotten up to are gone. I can barely think of anything exciting to post. How sad am I?

On a somewhat more mundane, but upbeat note, I managed to find the perfect cargo pants for women. With a few exceptions, I hate using a purse. I find them cumbersome, clumsy and constantly in the way of using my hands.  I wanted what the men have – cargo pants that have enough pockets for your necessities – wallet, cell phone, glasses and any smaller items you absolutely need. After searching for years, buying ones that I thought were right and experimenting with similar styles, I hit upon the Land’s End web site and couldn’t believe my eyes. The first pair I bought were so perfect, I ordered another pair in beige and am now in cargo heaven. My search is now on for cargo shorts.

I came upon Land’s End while looking to replace an Oxford Shirt I wore and loved for over 20 years. Having to toss it out was heartbreaking. I soon came across the Landsend.com web site, a well-known, reputeable clothing establishment. I felt secure in knowing I could trust them and their inventory of women’s Oxford Shirts was more than I could have hoped for. At first I ordered a couple of cable-knit sweaters with 3/4 sleeve I find myself wearing all the time. Then I ordered an Oxford Shirt to give it a try and I was so pleased I ordered one in every colour. I wear them daily and love them. It now appears I may be a regular customer.

The day before my birthday, my older sister with breast cancer received her results. All good, she was told. Everything went well, they managed to remove the tumour cleanly and she would only have to see the radiologist for her next step in the process. She sees the Radiologist this Monday – the day before I see the dental surgeon. It seems we’re going along together in this waiting period of the medical and dental professions. Trust me, and dear sister will agree – the waiting time is extremely frustrating and stressful. No wonder the population has high blood pressure – created by the very professions that highly recommend you keep it in check!!! Talk about irony!!!

My birthday was quiet – turning 69 should never be shouted out too loud. We had lunch at the Mandarin St. Catharines – still leary about the Niagara Fall’s restaurant from our last crummy visit. We had a nice time and spent the rest of the afternoon quietly at home. (Damn, that “quietly at home” part sounds like I passed away!!).

Shortly after my birthday, that scammy Valentine’s Day was upon us. In my teenage years it meant something, but age and cynicism took over. Loving hubby, however, still bought me some Nigh’s Chocolates. Who am I to deny such a thoughtful gift. He knows exactly how to hit me right in the heart!! We also took the excuse to have a meal at the Queen Charlotte Tea Room – an authentic and proper English restaurant – the usual fish ‘n chips, Shepherd’s Pie, Roast Beef w/ Yorkshire Pudding, Meat Pies, Afternoon Tea, High Tea, scones, a huge variety of teas and so much more. Set in an old house in Niagara Falls, it’s warm, cozy, friendly and the homemade fries are to die for!!!!!

My hubby is off today, helping his youngest daughter to move. She’s come to the realization that her townhouse condo is too much for her to handle financially and has found a very nice apartment which will give her freedom from expenses she found too burdensome. Nat rented a U-Haul truck and along with her daughter’s boyfriend, a neighbour and son, she’ll get moved in today and will have the balance of February and March to relax until her deal closes mid-March. She was lucky to take possession of the apartment early and will have lots of time to move, clean the townhouse condo and then get settled in her new digs. For me, it’s been a quiet day to get some small things done in the office, do laundry and maybe later watch a few old sitcoms I’ve taped for such an event.

On a final note, as I tried once again to grow my hair out, it became a disaster. I became frustrated again at any hair touching my forehead resulting in itching at night that drives me to drink. A side note – itching apparently is a side-effect from the Prednisone I’m on as an anti-rejection drug. My hairdresser completely understood and we decided to take my hair style back to it’s old no-nonsense ways. As much as I try to change my appearance or improve in some small way, reality brings me back to earth.

 

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Reviving Our Vinyl

For Valentines’ Day my sweetie wined and dined me at Mandarin Restaurant and what a fabulous meal it was. The new Mandarin in Niagara Falls was booked to the hills and because of the special occasion accepted “Reservations Only”. We had booked for 4:00 pm (the other alternative would have been 8:45 pm and that’s a bit late even for Nat and I), and it was just as well. The place was packed when we arrived and after some confusion with everyone else in front and behind us having a 4:00 pm seating, we were escorted to a table in the back where we were surrounded by other couples. Each reservation was allowed 1 hour and 45 minutes for their dining experience, and that was plenty for us. We don’t like to linger too much and we’re not big eaters, but we managed to have a nice glass of wine with our meal and the entire evening was delicious. Plus they have the biggest, fatest, juiciest chicken wings I’ve ever had!! We arrived home and settled in for the rest of the night – including Nat watching his beloved Leafs finally win a game. Happy Valentines’ Day, Dear!!

The past couple of days we’ve also been in the throws of setting up our little recording gizmo – Nero Audio Suite – in order to finally get all of our long play record albums, cassette tapes and 45’s recorded or transferred into our computer and eventually burned onto CDs. We’ve had some challenges, to say the least, in getting set up. As the program is for “Windows” only and not Mac, we pulled out the old laptop (which was in our closet gathering dust) and I wiped the hard drive clean by re-installing Windows XP. A good clean slate.

The connections were easy enough to make. We stumbled a couple of times with  the sound card in the old laptop – it’s getting dreadfully slow – but after re-reading the instructions it finally dawned on us what we were doing wrong. I will admit, however, that the instructions can leave a lot to your imagination, but then again, what little gizmo these days comes with really clear instructions? I’ve also managed to find a lot of help by Googling “Nero” and its amazing what’s out there. Whoever you guys are, thank-you!!!

Our situation involves the turntable, the receiver, the Nero Audio Suite and the laptop. We had a lot of trouble getting the sound right – we had a recording but no sound. We had sound coming from the receiver but not the computer, we had sound coming from the computer and the receiver but no sound in the recordings, etc., etc., etc. So we started fresh again this afternoon. We set the laptop back to its default settings, we restarted and re-installed the Nero Audio Suite and we went line by line and what to our surprise, the whole thing was in good working order. In my zealousness to get things going and thinking I knew what I was doing, “Little Miss Anxious” (moi!!!) had reversed the sound cards in the laptop from what the instructions told us. Duh!! So for the umpteenth time we listened to  An Innocent Man (Billy Joel), as it was being recorded into the computer. We didn’t adjust any of the noise levels and left things as they were and went ahead and burned a CD.

The Nero instruction booklet indicated that you could only burn to a CD-R and not a CD-RW, as some CD-RWs could not be played back on some listening devices. But we went ahead and burned a CD-RW only because this was a learning process and we wanted to see what happened. Well, much to our surprise the CD-RW played in perfect order on our new little stereo unit we had purchased in Florida a couple years back. AND it was perfect. Billy Joel never sounded so good. We both grinned from ear to ear. We had succeeded. We were also excited as we could now finally get some of Nat’s old albums that can’t be found anymore into the computer and burned to a CD for posterity and for transferring to our iPods if and when we wanted. I can also now preserve all of our 45 records and tape cassettes and finally be able to go down memory lane whenever I want. At least I know how to get a CD from a Windows computer to MAC – for me, that’s the easy part. It was getting the vinyl records transferred to CD that was going to be the stumbling block until we found this little gizmo. So here’s to gizmo, gadgets, technology and all that stuff. There’s not too much else out there that can’t be done and I’m loving every new little thing I can find and/or use.

Between Nat and I we both have a lot of vinyl records, cassette tapes and 45s, so I’m guessing I should be busy for quite some time. Not knowing about all of this wonderful technology and it not being available at the time, I’ve also given quite a lot of my old vinyl to dear sister, Michele, who is an avid collector and music lover. Do you think she’d give me some back???? Love you, Michele!!!!