Sunday, April 29, 2018

Almost Finished

Life is good for a little doggie.

Dining room under construction is almost finished!

This rug was bought at Amazon for only $39 with free delivery.

The original dining room floor was white carpet that was heavily soiled with multiple cigarette burns from the previous owner. This 4x6 rug is a copy of a Covent Garden Persian Traditional Design. 

I bought the rug to hide the nasty white carpet until I could come up with plan B. 

The quality is outstanding. I receive many compliments on it. In the winter I use it in the kitchen over the parquet flooring because it's warmer on bare feet. In the summer I can use it in the dining room over the newly laid vinyl flooring. 

These rugs sold by A to Z come in assorted colors, designs and sizes.

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Thrift Shops

Usually I am dumpster diving for useful products. I like to joke "the price was right!"

Recently I was planting 99 cent flower seeds in medium and big pots that I spent a half hour fishing out of the dumpster. I am hoping for exquisite beauty in a few weeks or months.

The power of faith. Recently I ate some avocados, then stuck 3 toothpicks in each pit to dangle them over a cup of water. Eventually they began sprouting roots, so now I am going to have avocado plants growing.

Next I've shopped at thrift stores and found some amazing articles. One store overlooked the fact that they had some 14K earrings up for sale for only $2. WOW! I splurged and snatched those up. Usually thrift shops send the gold off to be melted and pocket the profit. This was a charity shop. Maybe the volunteer didn't understand the difference between costume jewelry and 14K.

One day recently I found a gorgeous red silk kimono that fit me perfectly. I am wearing it now while I sit here typing at 6am. Generally I have very bad luck finding clothes I like that fit me. I feel so spoiled yet I only spent 25 cents on it. It did not come with a sash, but that's OK. I am wearing a simple black Tshirt dress I slept in, with my silk robe over it. Originally it was 50 cents, but I was shopping on senior day and when the cashier gave me the senior discount, I did not argue one bit.

A few weeks later I was in the same shop and there on a lone hanger was the red silk sash. I asked them if I could have it to go with the kimono I had previously bought. Simply amazing!

My 5th wheel kitchen is far larger than my previous Class C efficient galley. For the first time in 8 years, I can consider owning a few select kitchen appliances.

Recently I found a brand new but old food processor. The style seems to be 20 or so years old, yet the plastic bowl and sharp blades appear to have never been used. It even came with the manual folded up and stuffed inside the bowl.

Did someone keep a food processor for 20 years and never once use it?

I brought it home, washed it for good luck, then tossed in cabbage, carrots, honey, vinegar, mayonnaise, garlic, dill, salt and pepper. I gave it a few whirs until the veggies were chopped and the dressing was mixed.

Delicious homemade coleslaw was on the menu for dinner now.

Another of my favorites is I cook a lot of dried beans. When I get down to the last cup of leftover beans, I can throw them in the food processor with assorted additions coming up with a tasty bean dip that will spread on crackers or cucumber slices.

A few weeks ago, I was bragging because I came home with beautiful dining chairs that swivel, rock, rotate and roll. They are built of solid oak and ultra-suede fabric. I paid $20 but when I got home and flipped them over, I looked up their tags online. These chairs sell for $455 each new.

At another store, they were selling personal care products that had been donated by drugs stores. I stocked up my bathing and medical supplies for about 10% cost. They also had heavily discounted dishwasher soap in small boxes. I bought them out and ended up with enough dishwasher soap to last me all year for a pittance. I am oh so spoiled because this 5th wheel came with a compact dish washer.

I had forgotten how much fun it is to cook for my friends with "someone else" doing the dishes. In this case the machine. Wow.

Even Harley dog has lucked out. He is always trying to hog my afghan blankie and I don't always want to share it with him and I get tired of the doggy smell and having to wash the entire queen sized afghan so often to get rid of his canine perfume.

In the baby department I found this gorgeous baby sized afghan that was handmade and selling for the princely sum of 50 cents. It looked like it had never been used. I presented it to Harley and he was thrilled to have his own blankie now. It's so small, it's much easier for me to keep it washed and odor free. Now he doesn't covet my afghan. So it's a win win situation. 

90% of the time when he is lazing about inside, he is flopped out on his little afghan on the couch. He likes to rearrange it until it is nicely wrinkled up then he settles down on it with a contented sigh.

I need a chair for my living room, so I keep visiting various thrift shops in hopes that one day the perfect chair at a decent price turns up.

Yesterday I found a comfy chair, but it was too big.  However, I found an amazing designer tunic made of  100% cotton with matching pants at the thrift store. It looks new. It had a color coded tag. When I went to pay for it, that colored tag was half priced, so I paid 25 cents for a gorgeous outfit.

Outside on my patio area I am trying to do some container gardening to jazz up the ambience. Occasionally I am finding beautiful outdoor plant stands at the thrift stores. My garden is starting to look interesting with the plant stands enabling me to have some of my little plants at various heights.

Life is goof.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Puter too Slow?

This is a how to be a Geek for a day and get your puter running at top speed for free.

I use a ton of free programs over the years to keep my ancient laptop running at top speed. I try to go through all these steps about once a week give or take. I do use the CCleaner more often by itself to clear off internet junk.

First off do a Windows update.
Then do a Create A Restore Point

I would also back up all your docs and pics etc., and clean off any of those you don't need AFTER making the backups.

Just do one thing at a time, then restart your computer and if all is well, move on to the next item. I would keep making restore points between tweaks. If anything goes wrong, you can restore and then start over.

I haven't listed the programs (bottom of this note) in the preferred order, but basically between creating restore points, I would do things in this order:

Update windows
Backup docs and pics, then remove those you don't need or use right now
Remove programs you don't use
Check malware
Check virus
Clean Registry
Defrag Registry
Find Junk Files


Aulogics Disk Defrag

Find Junk Files

Housecall free virus scan


Eusing Free Registry Cleaner

Eusing Free Registry Defrag

I've had very good luck and my laptop is over 10 years old and still cranking out.  I am using Windows 7 on a 64 bit system.

Have something else to do as some of these tasks will hog the computer for awhile, so you can clean the kitchen between chores or paint your toe nails or dust the ceiling...

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Repair or Replace

Clammy weather on the cool side.

After many friendly phone calls, the repairman showed up to look at my air conditioning.

It's old and dirty.

I gave it a real good cleaning.

A month or more ago a guy showed up and said he would be back a week later to complete repairs to my AC but I never saw nor heard from him again. However, his friend who had sent him over, said the guy had suddenly moved when he got a deal on property and was having troubles getting his double wide trailer all hooked up to the utilities.

The next guy to show up gave the AC a look see and promised to be back the next day.

That day came and went.

A few more super friendly phone calls and voice mail messages  plus another week or two or three and he turns up one day.

By now I had it in pieces ready for him to have a go at it. Amazingly in under 10 minutes he found the problem, fixed it and turned it on.

I was so delighted and thanked him profusely. I went to get him money to pay him. I was thrilled!

When I came back, he was gone. Truck just vanished into thin air. I had told him about another lady in the park that wanted to see him too. Had he gone there? But I checked and his truck was not there either.

I haven't seen him since. How can he work for free?

Last time he repaired my furnace and I went to pay him but all I had a was a hundred dollar bill. He said he would go get change and I said well keep it. I wanted to tip him for finally giving me heat as I had been plenty cold without it.

So at this point I don't know what I owe him. He is my number one repair man for this area, because if one is lucky enough to get him to look at something, he generally gets it fied rapidly withouth repalcement.

Many RV repairman are on a replacement schedule only. They make more money and less work by insisting RVers replace rather than repair. I am old school. I want things repaired rather than replaced.

I feel like the luckiest person in the whole wide world! I have heat and I have air conditioning. Today it's so beautiful I have all the windows open and plain fresh air. My favorite!

Life under the oaks.


Saturday, April 21, 2018

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Friday, April 13, 2018

Birthday Survival

Survived my birthday!

Thank you to all who made it wonderful.

I sure feel older for sure but I am super grateful I've lasted this long.

Life is goof.

Monday, April 09, 2018

Rhonda the Robot

Rhonda the robot. 

How could I fall in love with a robot?

One problem in buying this RV is that it came with miles of white plush carpet. At first I threw down a bed sheet on the main area so it wouldn't get tracked up while moving in. But the bed sheet was a pain to deal with and what's the use of having carpet if you don't use it. 

So the bedsheet came off and into the washer. 

The rig came with a heavy duty vacuum cleaner. So heavy I couldn't carry it from level to level to clean with it. Six weeks went by of nobody vacuuming. I sold the vacuum cleaner. The buyer had to come carry it off, I couldn't lift it. 

This is the first time I have owned a place with wall to wall carpet. 

I had heard they make robots to vacuum without human intervention. I did a ton of research then used my Christmas gift money (THANK YOU!) to buy the simplest robot vac available. No wifi, no schedule, just turn it on and let her work!

Now Rhonda vacuums EVERY day. Well I admit once in a while I goof up and give her the day off. But mostly I use her every single day. Leash up the dog for a walk, turn on Rhonda then lock the door. I come home to clean carpet. 

I have to move her to all 3 levels and she does an outstanding job. At first her cup over-floweth as apparently I had a lot of dirt inside. Even now on a daily basis she finds an amazing amount of debris to pick up. 

After tons of research I bought the original innovator, the Roomba which is now called iRobot. Their super simple model 614 suits me perfectly. 

Roomba carried replacement parts. I have learned one has to do a bit of maintenance on the bot every month. Plus it's important to empty it after every use. 

She seems powerful enough and has a sense of humor.

When Rhonda backs up she puts out her warning backup beeps. When she is done with an area she plays a TA DA! beep that is kind of cute. 

If she tangles up with something like one day she tried to swallow an empty errant dog poop bag and it got stuck so she shut down with an UT OH beep. 

She gently bumps into walls and furniture as she learns her way around. She does a superb job. I am mightily impressed. In my book she is an "adaptive aid". If you know of anyone struggling to maintain their independence, then get them a Roomba. 

I get a kick out of walking my dog or riding my bicycle knowing that I am multi-tasking what with Rhonda at home zipping around collecting dirt. 

For some fool reason I thought if I vacuumed every day Rhonda would run out of dirt to pick up. I try my best to take off my shoes and wipe my feet, but still Rhonda find dirt every where. 

Typically I empty her into the outside garbage can and clean her filter. Ever few weeks I have to give her a hair cut. Even though I mostly brush my long hair outdoors, it rolls around her roller brushes and clogs them up. She came with an included hair cutting tool that makes it easy and fast to clean her brushes. 

I am super impressed with Rhonda and she has quickly become my new best friend. Oh just kidding, I love my little crazy doggy. 

Which Harley dog had some issues with Rhonda. She eats any snacks left on the  floor! So now Harley is quick to be the hoover hound checking the kitchen often for tidbits because he is jealous of Rhonda. It appears that when he is in same room as Rhonda she chases him around. He doesn't like this either. 

If I need him to go outside, I just turn on Rhonda and he races for the door!

Amazon has many different iRobot models to choose from. I liked and bought the super simple model 614. 

Friday, April 06, 2018

Coping with New Used RV

When I saw my 5th wheel for the first time, I fell in lust with it. I had files full of pics and prices on rigs I had collected info on that were way beyond my means, but had the comforts and space I craved. It was just a wishful daydreaming type research I mostly did to cure insomnia.

 Sicker shock was causing me to give up hope and wait a few more years. But the one I bought came on the market at a whale of a deal. I dropped what I was doing to go see it an hour and a half away never dreaming I would be buying it within an hour of first seeing it.

Later I regretted my purchase and found it incredibly hard to get comfortable in my new used rig. Had I made a mistake? At the time I was juggling a few nightmares. I was very sick and so was my close friend who suddenly perished. This distressed and  frightened me as if everything was spiraling out of control.

I realized I had to make some changes. I bought a new mattress, swapped out the dining chairs and realized the leather sofa needs the aid of a blanket in the winter to keep from feeling cold. It's a lush super comfy couch except for the dadgum leather feels cold in the winter.

Harley dog had a hard time settling in too, trying to figure out where he belonged. We both missed having our windshield view of dog walkers. We often joined other dog walkers so Harley could see his buddies. Now we can't see them come by unless we are already outside. So many different things to get used to on a daily basis.

Sadly my joint problem is not likely to leave me so I am having to add more and more adaptive aids to my day to day lifestyle. My old rig had many incorporated in her decor and design over the years. Many were relocated from my old rig to this rig but it took a lot of effort to uninstall and reinstall.

Due to another health issue, I can go through a small mountain of laundry in short order. Having a washer/dryer is a huge adaptive aid for me. I used to hang dry my clothes but moving to this lot has made that problematic. First off they don't allow laundry lines except the collapsible umbrella type which I don't own.

They do provide public clothes lines at the rec hall yard. Recently at a hog dog fire roast at the pit we had a good long look at some lady's assorted undies left on the line. Rather comical for conversation starters.

My lot is covered in tall oak tree branches that rain down leaves, pollen and Spanish moss 24/7. Drying clothes can mean they get covered in leaves, green wormy critters and tree plus bug debris. My dryer is only 110 not 220 yet it seems to dry things really nicely without heating up the rig. My washer and dryer are smaller than the typical house size since they are the Kenmore stackable. laundry center.

Probably the only adaptive aid to come with this rig was the lazy suzy on the high shelf of the laundry center. I have my soap, vinegar, borax, bleach and hydrogen peroxide spray bottle on it.

The water is hard here so I use regular soap detergent with a 1/3 cup of Borax. I have a Downy automatic dispenser that I fill with white vinegar, well fill two thirds because it relies on the centrifugal force of the spin to open it up for rinsing. The vinegar softens clothes and keeps the pump from gumming up with hard water crud. I never use dryer sheets as I prefer natural clothes and the dryer sheets irritate my skin.

The hydrogen peroxide spray bottle is for removing stains prior to washing. You would be surprised how many stains it will clean. I had a dress get washed that came back out with the stains still on them because I forgot to pretreat. I did the hydrogen peroxide, let it sit awhile then washed again. Came out clean.

My three outdoor steps were plain metal prone to slipperiness when wet. I had some non-slip tape I put on them first. But I didn't really like that choice. Splurged for some outdoor carpet made for RV steps with the little grommets and springs in back. I wanted the color blue but the black color was selling far cheaper so black it is.

The carpet is that outdoor magnetic type so it practically cleans the shoes as you walk on it. I tend to kick my shoes off at the door, but many of my friends do not.

The inside entry has a square of parquet flooring. This looks nifty and is functional. I keep a fluffy washable rug there for cleaning my bare feet and the dog loves the rug for guarding the door. I try to shake it out daily but it can go in the wash too.

I am thinking of getting this washable rug from amazon that comes with a 10 year warranty for their gorilla grip rubber backing. That is always the problem. Once the rubber backing starts flaking off, it's too dangerous to put in the wash and has to be done outside by hand.

Off to see the wizard!

Enjoy your day.

6 more days until my big birthday!

Wednesday, April 04, 2018

Spice It Up

My new old 1992 trailer came with a nifty kitchen. It's been busy since I moved in because I make food from scratch at home. In my old motorhome over the years I had built in several spice racks to hold my bottles and jars.

When I moved into this rig, I didn't know where to put my spices so I could find them again. So I lined them up on the back counter, left to right, A to Z.

That worked beautifully but the kitchen had a perpetual cluttered look with all those spices hogging the entire backsplash.

The wall above the counter on the far right is 22 inches deep by 22 inches high to the upper cabinet. But the back wall of the trailer is at an angle so the top of the wall measures 19 inches, not 22. I did some measurements and calculations to determine that the right sized spice rack would hold all my spices on that wall.

I searched hundreds of spice racks on amazon and just didn't find anything workable to maximize the area and store all my spices in an easy to find manner. My cabinets are pretty full and digging around a cabinet to grab a dash of this, a sprinkle of that and a smidgen of this is cumbersome when one has 50 bottles of herbs.

Then I came across a display rack for nail polish used in manicure salons everywhere. I ordered one to see if it would work with my spices. It came with six separate shelves. That is what had me excited to choose this economical option. I only needed 4 shelves, and that would leave me 2 extra shelves for sawing and then attaching to the other 4 shelves to extend them all across the side wall at the weird angle.

Many of my spices would not fit the shelves. So I ordered spice bottles that would. I chose square rather than round for a neater look. Also if you choose square for a motorhome, it means you can put little felt pieces on the sides and the bottles will ride quietly down the bouncy highways.

Recently I acquired a heavy duty vice for free. I was told I could rummage around a shed and take what I wanted including the vice! My friend installed it on my work bench in the shed. So it was easy to place the shelves that had to be custom sawed into the vice, then saw away.

Drill holes, screw up the entire rack, all 4 shelves plus the extra custom sized ends. Next I transferred my spices and herbs to their new bottles.

Here is the finished rack with room for more spices, which I am missing a few herbs I favor. At the end is my little salt and pepper set I use at the dining table. Above I stuck a battery operated motion light. When you reach for the rack, the light comes on and when you are done, it goes off.
I am super excited!

It looks oh so cool. I have it A-Z left to right, top to bottom.

It's the nicest spice rack I have ever owned. I am quite pleased with it.
I bought a spice labeling kit that came with blank labels too, but they had enough preprinted labels that I have not had to label my own yet.

Cooking is a joy to just grab the herbs I want and have a nice happy home for them all between uses.

7 more days to my birthday!


Tuesday, April 03, 2018

Almost There

10 days til my birthday!
Yippie doodle do!

I can't believe I will hopefully be celebrating in my new rig. How amazing!

When I first bought this rig, I didn't say anything on my blog. Initially there were so many problems and nightmares, I feared I had made a terrible mistake. I contemplated selling the 5th wheel before I ever brought it home.

I had already paid cash for it, paid a small fortune to the state of Florida for tags, sales taxes and assorted fees plus placed the maximum insurance on it including roadside assistance. If I had a made a mistake, it was going to cost me and set me back. How embarrassing. How humiliating. Yeah, I've made mistakes before.

Twice I've bought houses that I never got to live in. That was long ago, but still, both were mistakes. Luckily I got out of both nightmares. One was a home that was burned down by a vindictive ex lover. The title was in both our names. We never lived in it. We were contemplating moving into it after our marriage. But I found out some alarming information about my intended.  I cancelled the wedding. Amazingly I sold my exotic wedding dress to a blushing gushing bride who was marrying her 4th husband. I was invited to her wedding, my ex was not. But he showed up anyhow. He was in for a shock when he realized the bride was wearing my dress. My ex fiancee was furious about my abrupt break up. He attended the wedding uninvited in hopes of changing my mind. Even though I wanted nothing to do with him, I kept peace by pretending his presence was expected.

For some reason my brain is so foggy that I can no longer remember a thing about that house. How strange is that. The insurance company knew he was probably 100% guilty of arson but assembling an ironclad  case was tough. They discovered in his past, other suspicious fires and insurance claims. Initially they paid off  my half of the claim. His half was never paid. He was warned that if he pursued his claim, they would pursue arson charges. Since we never married I could testify against him. What a mess. He dropped his claim.

Another home I bought had not formally closed when the former owner decided to vandalize it. There were so many witnesses to his wanton destruction that the purchase was easily reversed. I had not even spent a night in the house.

Well enough of that.

I found a piece of lattice work dumpster diving and installed it under the front end of my rig.