Tuesday, July 03, 2007

A shotgun pattern of things

This last week's been pretty busy. It started out with a scare with Vicki's mom. Susie had been trying to get hold of her after an afternoon doctor appointment. Mom was supposed to call her when she "got back from the doctor". Well Susie'd been trying her since 6pm, and at 10pm, she called us. We got Susie B. (different Susie) from across the street to go check on her, and Mom's car wasn't there. Well within a half hour the phone rings and the caller id says Lutheran Hospital.

Fortunately, it's mom and not some doctor on the phone and she's ok. We told her that Susie was expecting a call from her when she got home from the doctor. She replied "well I'm not home from the doctor yet." Well good, her sense of humor is intact as well. Anyway, she went to the doctor for "heaviness" in her legs, some swelling and discoloration. Turns out her heart's not ticking quite right and the swelling and heaviness is blood that isn't getting back to her heart fast enough and it's kind of collecting there, causing the discoloration as well. And that can lead to blood clots. Which can then break free and go clog up a valve or chamber in your heart and do you in. So they sent her to the hospital to get her on blood thinners and a close watch pronto.

Vicki drove up Tuesday Night/Wednesday to be with her and make sure all the right questions got asked and help her get everything she needed. She was discharged Thursday and Vicki came home Sunday.

So I "bach"-ed it here in the mean time.

Fixed some things around the house and started working on the garage. We decided we're going to hang our sleeping bags. They shouldn't really be stored rolled up and compressed. So I put up some short closet rods perpendicular to the wall alongside the storage shelves to hang a bunch of camping/hiking stuff on. And I hung the ladders. Located a smelly dead mouse under the freezer compressor, vaccumed out behind the freezer and the beer refrigerator (both in the garage) and cleaned the coils (they needed it badly).

Well all this means the bikes have to go somewhere else. We only have a 1 car garage, and we have camping equipment, beer brewing equipment, lawn & garden stuff, car stuff, tools, various pieces of scrap lumber, bird seed, coolers, spare electronic equipment ..... it adds up. But I don't want our bikes just sitting out in the weather. I can put them under the deck, but that's almost worse because dirty water drips between the boards when it rains which would make them both wet and dirty and slow to dry to boot.

So I went to Hoods and bought the stuff to make a little bike shelter, and I bought a bike rack to lock them to. Just a shelter built with a 2x2 frame, a plywood roof, with some vinyl shake siding for "shingles". Haven't built it yet. But the garage is shaping up.

Did some vaccuuming. Cleared the basement of moldy smell (I think I talked about that last time).

Oh, and almost killed the cherry tomatoes.

I sprayed some roundup all around the edges of the garden -- very carefully trying to hit only the weeds growing out from under the edges of the tarpaper. Then it rained for about 3 days, and when the sun came out, the tomatoes wilted. The tops of the other two tomato plants wilted as well. But the next day those two appeared to have recovered. Not so the the cherries. So I tore the tarpaper up from around them and just doused the soil with water. Next morning, some of the wilty stuff was perking up and most of the rest of it looked less wilty.

Next afternoon, it looked pretty bad, but not quite as bad as the afternoon before. I repeated the waering. Next morning, more improvement. Next afternoon, less setback. And again the next day. So I think with some TLC they'll shake it off.

We switched from Mediacom cable modem to Centurytel DSL -- in a package deal that gives us internet, phone + unlimited long distance and Dish Network sattellite for less than we were paying for all that before (without the unlimited long distance) AND... it all comes on one bill. Which Vicki likes.

Going out to Mom & Dad's tomorrow. Aunt Pat is there. I imagine we'll see Uncle Eddie and Julie and Dawn, at least. The brothers, too. Aunt Pat's following us back here afterward for a visit and some computer work on my part. And friday evening Ryan and I are going on an overnight walkabout because Kristie's kicking him out for a bachelorette party she's hosting. So we're looking forward to that.

I got my passport last week, just so I'll have one. Vicki's was rejected due to her adoptive birth certificate -- they didn't like it. It's the one her parents got when they adopted her. It's worked all her life for everything else. She had also sent off for two more official copies from Indiana after we sent that one off (her only copy) and we remembered the Marines had lost Brian's. The new ones are different. We wonder if they'll suffice -- but get this, nobody at the passport information help center can tell us. They say "well, try this. It should work. Maybe." But with twelve week waiting periods this could easily stretch out to 6... 9 ... 12 months (it's already been three). And adoption records are closed in Indiana. They will not give Vicki the information she would need to go the other two routes they suggested ... and the state department help line could not tell us what we could do about it -- "I don't know", said THREE people, and all three of them refused to transfer us to somebody who could tell us.

Now damned sure if Vicki stopped paying her taxes they'd show up at OUR door and take HER straight off to jail without asking any of these questions that they want her to answer to prove she exists and is a U.S. Citizen.

We're hoping the new birth certificate and a letter of explanation will suffice. One guy "thinks" it "should".


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