|our snowy house with the full moon A few days later the snow was covered with a thick coat of ice which gave cool reflections but messed up other things|
|Naomi and Maya More of Maya thanks to more storms|
|my suet cake raider. Actually we have three of these travelling great distances in the winter. In the summer, they don't bother|
|Depot Town Ypsilanti Went for a Happy Hour there|
|new addition to my doll wall|
|Wall art for my bedroom|
If all goes well, this should be my last visit to the understaffed social security office ever though Steve will have to go back in a few years when he starts collecting on his own account. I did have to make a rush trip to them last year (right before I was to leave to Costa Rica) to correct some mistake THEY made or I wouldn't get Medicare (and would not have anything else so I couldn't ignore it) but this was not so time sensitive and we were tempted to go home when there was absolutely no where to park. Steve waited in the driveway while I got in line. The numbers were not sequential so one had no idea on the wait. They actually had an employee whose sole job was to make sure no one stood in the waiting room (not enough chairs) You could stand in the vestibule or sit outside (another frigid shitty day here) He did have another job: patrolling the parking lot to make sure there were not any illegal parkers (there were some empty employee only spots..surprisingly few handicapped spots). People would naively assume he was answer man but all he would say is get a number and no you can't stand here. I would have guessed we would be some of the younger clients but most people seemed much younger than us. Finally after an hour our number came up. Our guy was helpful. What we needed? Our wedding license (all tattered up) and a routing number to send the money. We didn't need our birth certificates (they had them already) So this annoying job is done and we no longer have to worry whether our medicare payments have been lost in the mail (which has come up too many times!!!!) We celebrated with a rare lunch out. We used to go out all the time but ever since the Big Diet, I've been limiting that. You would think all the soup and salad you could eat would have been the most diet friendly option but when the soup is lobster bisque and a tasty version at that, all bets are off. My big fear of all the weight coming back is a constant. Some of it annoyingly has come back but I still comfortably fit in the size 4s. Still I want to be back at my low. And then the next day I caved and had a slice of good homemade cheesecake at my friend's house and then Happy Hour...my weight started ballooning to scary heights, since reversed.
Still doing things that I only have time for while waiting out this incredibly long winter like repairing jewelry and organizing closets. One day I will have a glue day to repair everything at once that needs gluing. I bought the glue...just have to get started. Dutch is much harder and less fun when I discovered that in clauses (and there are all sorts of clauses with different rules) word order is changed. So you have to decide whether you have a co-ordinating clause, subordinate clause or a relative clause signaled by various phrases. Now romance languages are starting to look easier though they have that nasty subjunctive set of verbs that one only uses in clauses but at least the syntax doesn't change. I am getting better at distinguishing words. And most people don't speak in clauses so I should be able to understand simple sentences, preferably spoken to me as if I am a toddler. In Italy, I usually could understand children given the simplicity of their language. Newscasters reading at warp speed the news was a different story.
The latest storm (Quiana,could we getting at the end finally?) was advertised well in advance. Maya would have a shortened stay up north which meant she'd be with us as Naomi works when she is gone. It fortunately came a few hours later than planned so very early sunday morning, it was calm and warm. I ran into the direction of the wind. Still calm. And then a long put off (thanks crappy weather) bike ride heading into the wind. It was started to pick up and the temps dropping. By the end of the day, gale force winds and the temps 35 degrees below what they were in the morning. The winds howled for almost 24 hours but we still had power and didn't seem to have damage.
We started getting those subscription meals though I feel tricked into it. A friend offers a 'free' meal to try but they need your credit card and then I hear, good luck cancelling. I hate the tricky, dishonest marketing but we will try them for awhile though it is hard to believe it is cost effective and they seem like too much work. I had let Steve do the 'easy' one but took over when I found out how much slicing and dicing it involved (he is so bad at that).
In an advertisement of all things, I read that 25% of girls miss school because they don't have hygiene products at home. Could that be true? The advertisement said if you buy their products, they will donate so much to schools to maintain a supply for those in need. So will these girls have to go ask someone for a tampon? Or will they just keep a basket of them to be raided. Although I didn't have everything I always wanted or in some cases need (glasses were a luxury, I shouldn't have wrecked my eyes) I was supplied with those ridiculous pads in the days before adhesive strips were invented (or super absorbent materials). I was given a belt with metal nickel teeth to tenuously hold the pad (huge!!!) in place and lived in fear that the pad would come unattached. Also I had the cheap belt that didn't have the nice satin tab preventing the nickel (very allergic) from touching the skin. Careful folding of the pad ends could prevent contact but sometimes I ended up with contact dermatitis and once a secondary infection (impetigo of the nether regions..so much fun). Tampons could have prevented many of my worries but these were specifically not supplied nor were there directions on how to use them. Glad all that craziness is over. Now waiting for spring..impatiently.