End of Insanity


Its amazing how relieved I am that this year is almost over. In fact, I think this picture best sums up how I feel about 2021.

Finally got to see the opthomologist and learned my problem started as a normal side affect of cataract surgery, but since the pandemic meant all eye clinics were closed for 14 months, something that would normally be easily addressed became a nightmare. Long/short: Minor laser surgery was done to correct the problem, am now off of the horrific mass of meds with all the debilitating side affects, and am now able to function “normally.” I will need eye drops every day from now on, but that is no big deal.

The huge cysts in my elbow have also been surgically removed, the cast is off, and am now able to use my arm again. Am still doing the final healing from the surgery, but I have full use of my arm, so I am thrilled.

As a result of being functional again, we have started working on the house again. Before getting to the home project, we spent a few days cruising thrift shops. The treasures we found are so thrilling! We found a wonderful electric washing machine that is also able to do dry cleaning. At a different thrift store we found the perfect sink and cabinet to replace the set in the bathroom. Lastly, we found a few things I thought I had lost forever.

Several years ago (when I still lived in Albuquerque), my apartment had been broken into. Jewelry was stolen, some of my suits, and my hand-crochet pillows (set of 4). I actually was able to find two of the four pillows! They said they don’t know who donated them, but I was more than happy to give them $5 to get these two back!

When we went and reviewed the property, we decided to focus on the bathroom. Again, what we thought would be a one day project to replace the tiny sink and collapsing cabinet became a week long mess. We discovered the plumbing was done wrong, so the piping had to be redone before we could install the new cabinet and faucet. The picture below shows a corner of the tiny bowl-sized sink and collapsing cabinet. Here’s the result of replumbing and installing new.

We decided to keep the old clawfoot tub, but we could see we would be having some issues there. Little did we know!

Not only does the wall require massive rework and repair, but the plumbing was the biggest surprise. The fixtures are going to be replaced with fixtures made for a clawfoot tub, but we found out the plumbing from the floor and up was done with swamp cooler hoses, not pipes! This means poor Jim is going to have to tear out the wall in order to redo the shower as well as redoing all the other plumbing. We now know why the water never had any significant water pressure.

The beautiful old tub also needs TLC. After we moved it out of the corner we discovered that the legs, the underside and the side against the wall are rusted. We’ll patch the wall first as a joint effort. Thereafter, while Jim works on the plumbing, I’ll be sanding and cleaning the tub, coating it with Rustoleum and then spraying it with paint. All I have to do is remember to buy a wire brush the next time we’re in town….

Temporary Hiatus


With the weather having been so cold, then wet, then cold, then super windy, then rain… we took a break from working on the house. Doesn’t mean we quit working altogether though.

We’ve been planning how to do things, what things to focus on, what materials are going to be needed and in some cases, pre-buying the materials as we have the money. It can be overwhelming sometimes when we consider our To-Do list.

One day when we were in town we stopped by a thrift store to take a break from appointments. Thrift stores are wonderful — its amazing some of the things we have been able to find. There have been new appliances, electrical fixtures, kitchen utensils, and, of course, the occasional “I can’t believe this!” type of find in the clothing section. On this particular day I found something that made my jaw drop.

For those who don’t know me — I collect frogs. Have been doing so since my teens, but I look for the rare and unusual. The mass-produced clay frogs found at every department store will not please me, but the weird always will

On this particular day I found the ugliest frog item that I’ve seen in a long time. I loved it! Had to have it!! And I even justified the purchase by having the perfect use for it. What do you think?


So what am I gonna use it for? This rare, exotic vase is going to hold my wooden spoons in the kitchen

With the weather warming up next week, we plan on starting on the garden so while Jim is doing the heavy construction stuff in the house, I can putter in the dirt. Am digging through seed catalogs now, so I’ll report back on what I hope to plant in my next update.