11/26/18 Chronicles

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  Monday 11/19/18

Brandy with her new toyIf you're on Facebook, please visit my page because I find many fun videos and things to post! Most of them are public, so you don't have to be my Facebook friend to see them.

I had David wake me up at 6:30...it was tough to get up so early! I had to clean up the house a bit more before Trisha came over. I wasn't sure exactly when she was coming, but I knew it would be sometime after 8. I cleaned the bathroom a little; picked up all the dog's toys, and straightened the rugs that she always messes up; emptied and reloaded the dishwasher; finished the laundry, and just made sure everything looked OK. I dusted last week already, so only the floors are somewhat-dirty. I vacuumed the dining room last night after I put the Halloween decorations away (it was quite a mess), and I also took all of the Halloween and Thanksgiving boxes back to the garage. Trisha won't care one way or the other, but I hate when anyone sees my house looking bad. I get so few visitors that straightening up is the least I can do!

I also did some work on my site. Trisha came by around 8:45 or so? I think. She had her teenaged son Tucker with her. The Clawsons were coming over to do the lawn as they regularly do, but also, I asked them to cut back the hedges in front, some of which were too close to the roof. They did an excellent job. I left them a note, saying I was going out and would be back later. I put Brandy in the bedroom as usual and left the back gate open for them.The trailer's porch

Tricia first went to pick up her little 4 year old granddaughter Oslin at her mom's place; she lives in a trailer park. Thinking back on it, that might be the first time I've been in a trailer park in 45 years. I remember visiting one of my dad's friends in one before, back when I was a kid. I thought it looked like a nice place to live, actually. Of course, I had a lot less stuff back then!  I guess my brother Pat did get married in a trailer park community center, but I don't think that really counts. The little girl is very cute!

We all went over to Pittman's Nursery, which is just outside of town. I got a ton of new plants. I also bought soil, but they forgot to put it in the car. It turned out OK Tucker, Osline and Trishabecause I had some already at home, and it was enough. They gave me a credit on my credit card for it.  Then we stopped at Wal-Mart. I had to get a few things. We also picked up sandwiches at Subway for them. It was close to lunchtime, anyway.

Then we came back to the house. We all had lunch. Triciaone of my new plants helped me figure out which of my older plants were dead or dying, and which ones she should re-pot.  She repotted the plants while her son played on my laptop. The little girl helped her a little, but she was also wanting to see Brandy, which I wouldn't let her do because I didn't want Brandy to knock her over, or pee on the floor.  I gave her one of my bears to play with for a while, too. I one of the plantstried putting on cartoons, but she wasn't interested for the most part.

I bought two new plants (they look like mini-Christmas trees to me) that I put on either side of the front door, like last year. I wrapped some ribbon around one of them, with Trisha's help. I ran out of ribbon and need to get more. I will be decorating them more, too.

It was in the 40's today - very cold!

Brandy ready for her walkThe other people were working on the lawn, and they did a great job. I walked Brandy after Tricia and her family left. I really wanted to take a nap, but I didn't have time. I had two interviews at around 3pm. They went well.

The guy from next door has this handyman, who was going to cut back three of our Our yard looks very nice!trees in the front yard, but he never came by. I guess something came up!

I was shutting the back gate, and locking it, but Brandy dashed past me. I was annoyed with her, but also worried that she might get away or run in traffic.  She ran all over the lot next door, and I chased her. She was enjoying that, so instead I went back inside and got her leash, a sweater for me, and a squeaky toy. I lured her back with the toy and managed to get the leash back on her. Before that, she sure was having fun running around!  It's hard to stay mad at her when she's having so much fun.

I did more laundry and work on my site. David and I went out to dinner to El Compadre. I wasn't really that hungry, so I only had a little bit to eat.

I spent the rest of the evening working on my site, or my classes, and I went to bed about 11pm.

  Tuesday 11/20/18

Once again, I fell behind on updating this, so I've got to play catch-up and try to remember what happened this week. I have a good excuse because we've been traveling etc. At least it's better than last year, where I didn't post between Halloween and Christmas at all! LOL! I don't want to fall behind like that again.

It was very cold this morning, about 37, but it got warmer later on.

Even though it's Thanksgiving week, we had school today. It's funny because many high schools, etc. are out all week. I don't remember having the whole week off when we were kids, do you? Gee, these spoiled kids today! winky face  In fact, with all of the colleges we've been to, over the years, some didn't even give us Wednesday off, or they waited until the last minute to do so.

Trisha picked me up this morning at 8:45. I didn't have a very healthy breakfast, but it was really filling. I ate the leftover steak from Antigua's. I cut it up and sauteed it, and I added cheese. It was really yummy. Then I also had a piece of my pumpkin cheesecake, with lots of whipped cream. I'm going to have to make some more of that.

Anyway, we had our first class, but the professor let us out early by about 20 minutes. Gee, thanks for nothing... that gave me a lot of free time to sit around. Well, I did do a little work. I was sick, too, like usual. Probably from the places we ate out at over the weekend.

I sat in Reynolds for a while, chatting with everyone. They're already decorating the campus for Christmas, and there is Christmas music playing all the time inside Reynolds.

I went to my other class, and the professor kept us the whole time. I was a bit surprised, actually. He did give us some chocolate, at least, which was very nice of him. I chatted with him for a few minutes about the Spring semester classes. I have him for a class called Directed Study I, and also for a TBA class, Advanced Public Speaking. They sound interesting! I usually enjoy his classes. This week's blog post for class was a critique of news apps. No new blog posts until next week, yay!

David took me home, and then he took Brandy to the vet's after he dropped me off. I said goodbye to her. I always miss her!  She's going into the kennel while we're gone. It's also nice to not have her around sometimes. For instance, I could take a nap after I got home, and not have to walk her. Also, it would have been difficult to take a nap because she's been cooped up in the bedroom all day. She would have been too hyper and whiny. It was a nice luxury to take a nap. But I do like napping with her, when she's in a sleepy mood! winky face

Once again, we can't eat romaine lettuce. That really sucks...that's the kind I usually buy for salads and sandwiches. It keeps for a while and is nice and stiff for lettuce-wrap sandwiches. Fooey!

After I napped, I did work on my site. I did the rest of the laundry. I ran the dishes again. We both packed our clothes for tomorrow. That's about it! I did a ton of work on my site this week.

  Wednesday 11/21/18

Driving to ShreveportI got up around 8 so I could get ready for our trip. David had taken the car out of the garage when he went for his exercise, so I could move the boxes in the garage that are in front of our water heater. You see, our hot water heater has not worked for at least a week. I just haven't had time to call a plumber. He's coming this morning. It's just the hot water for our dishes and laundry. We have a separate one for our showers/baths.  It's a big house, so we have two water heaters, two A/C's and two regular heaters.  Otherwise it would be like our house in Tuscaloosa, where you freeze in one part of the house in the Winter.

I finished packing and doing some other stuff.  The plumbers came around 9am. They were missing a part, so one of them went to get it. Then they told us that it's still not working. We will have to order another part for about $100 and hope that will fix it. Otherwise, we'll need a new water heater. I guess this one is about 8 or 9 years old. Too bad because last year when it went out, it just needed the pilot light lit! No such luck this time. I hope we don't have to buy a new water heater any time soon. He said they're about $500, at least. UGH.

At least they got finished and left in time for us to leave around 10 when David wanted to leave. We drove to Shreveport/Bossier City, LA as we usually do for Thanksgiving weekend. It's about 90 minutes from us and much bigger. They have 5 or 6 casinos, and many restaurants, etc.Sam's Town hotel and casino

I should have eaten breakfast, but I didn't. I wasn't hungry. I was starving, though, by the time we got there. We stayed at Sam's Town Casino.  We went to the buffet at the ElDorado, which is next door. It was very good, but I didn't ask about the gluten, and I really should have. I avoided the obvious foods that were breaded or had sauces or other types of breading, or soy sauce.  But I was really stuffed up by the time we finished, and my back was itching a lot, so I knew already that it was a mistake. Also, my stomach didn't feel very good. Well, that was all my fault...

salad from buffetOf course we did have that big lunch, but I mostly have salad when I go to buffets, so it's healthier for me. I know from experience that the buffet at ElDorado only has one dessert I can eat, which is a chocolate flourless pyramid, so that was delicious.casino

We played for a while and then had a nap. That was pretty much our routine the whole trip. Wake up, eat, play, sleep, eat, play sleep. :)

I wanted to find karaoke but didn't find any until it was too late. I looked a lot online, but there wasn't much listed.  When I made the reservation for Sam's Town, the hotel View out our hotel windowroom was pretty cheap compared to the others. The room is pretty big and nice, so I can't complain too much.  The ElDorado and Margaritaville are nicer, but you pay more.

We went over to Margaritaville and had fun there. We didn't win much, but we had fun. For dinner, we were going to go to the coffee shop at the ElDorado, which we've been to many times before. They usually tell me which foods are GF. However, this time, the waiter asked the cook, and the cook said that nothing on their menu was safe to eat. Wow!! I mean, really. They have a HUGE menu. Not ONE thing!!!???!! That's just crazy. I was very annoyed. The waiter was pretty nice, though, and felt bad for me, so he gave me a comment card to fill out.beef skewers

So when we went over to Margaritaville after that. We went to this nice steak restaurant they have called Jimmy's. We've eaten there many times before, and they always know what ingredients are in their foods, and they know what gluten is.  We usually sit at the bar, as we did this time, and have food and some nice wine. They have a good pinot grigio I like called Bollini. I had this salad that was made from pickled duck and fingerling potatoes. It sounds weird, but it was very good. Also, I drinks menu at the barhad some Argentinian Beef Skewers. They were really delicious and also came with a yummy red pepper sauce.

There's a bar in there called the Five O'Clock Somewhere, and they have some fun drinks. I had a salted caramel martini, which is made from Kahlua and some kind of coffee...they sweetened it up for me with extra Splenda and whipped cream, then it was better. David had some kind of rum drink, I think. We always have fun, makingyummy peach drink the rounds to the various places.

We went back to ElDorado and sat in the bar for a while...they had a band that was pretty good. They played a mixture of blues, country and rock. It was just a singer/guitar player, a female bass player, and a drummer. I think it was the Jimmy Wooten Band. There were some very enthusiastic (Drunk?) people in the audience enjoying it.  You can find them on YouTube and at http://www.jimmywooten.net/ . Well, the guy looked better in concert than he does in the photos on that site! LOL!  We stopped at the little deli in our hotel to get some more food before bed. I had to have something to take my pills with. They have a foot long hot dog there that's pretty good. I hope it's GF!

David went to bed around 11:30, and I stayed up a bit to work on my site.

The internet here is not great. It's spotty.  Sometimes it works fine and other times, not so much. That's very irritating. Worse than my home internet, which has similar problems but isn't as bad as this. It's free here, but still...I would rather pay than have crappy Wi-Fi.

  Thursday 11/22/18

Happy Thanksgiving!

I woke up around 10 or so, after David came back from his exercise. He walks about 2-4 miles when he's on vacation, or on the weekend. We went over to Margaritaville, which we liked last year. It was supposed to open at 11:30, so we got there about 11:15. We take Lyft everywhere, basically. Anyway, there was a long line, and I stood in line about 40 minutes or so. I wasn't very hungry yet, but I hate standing. However, Thanksgiving dinner!I didn't want to try to go elsewhere.  David went off some to play while I stood in line. The line moved along a little here and there, and once they opened, it seemed to go pretty fast. At least I had my phone, so I wasn't totally bored. They brought us out cold bottles of water, too, so that was nice.

This time I did make sure to ask about gluten. They had the chef come out, and he told me, basically, which items I could eat. I didn't want to make him go through every single dish, so I just asked about the main things, and he pointed out some others. Their salad bad is really good, so I mostly had that. I had quite a bit of meat as well, and some cranberry sauce. Most places are just not going to have GF gravy, stuffing, bread, or pie, so that's fine. I ate plenty. There was also Creme Brulee for dessert.

Margaritaville is right next to an outdoor mall. When we gamble at these places, wePicture of the river and bridge just have fun. It's nice if we win, but mostly we just like to get out and have fun. Mostly I lost, but I did turn $20 into 45 on the roulette machine.  Then, I went on one of the older-type of slot machines, where you just play 3 quarters at a time, and I won $100! So that was cool. I rarely win much on those. He won a little, but I didn't win much. After we played a bit, we walked around the mall, but none of the stores were open. It was in the 40's but didn't seem all that chilly. I took some photos of the river.

We went back to our hotel, and David talked to his sister Susan and his mom, briefly. Susan sent us this photo of her, her mom and her husband John at dinner. John, Rosalys and SusanMy MIL is in a care facility near Susan.  We had a nap, and then later we chatted with his other sister, Eileen, and her husband Joe. I just texted my brothers or said hi on Facebook, along with many other people on social media.

David and I celebratingWe went out again to Margaritaville in the evening and went back to Jimmy's, since it was so good yesterday and has nice, light food. I just had the steak appetizer this time, and David had some gumbo. Also, I had some berries marinated in cognac for dessert. I was annoyed when I saw that they had karaoke last night in the lounge, and I could have gone! Ack!!! So annoyed!

We went back to our hotel and spent more time wandering around, playing, drinking etc. before going back to our room. I didn't stay up too late. I was tired.

  Friday 11/23/18

It was cold and rainy today, so we didn't do as much. I had hoped to walk down the street, as we did last year, and find another place to eat, but we didn't.  I tried to find karaoke around here, but I couldn't find any.  There was a place called Korners that I wanted to go to, but they had it last night, not tonight. I'm not having good luck with that. I would have gone to a movie, but David wasn't in the mood.

I was sick half the day, probably from eating at that buffet on Wednesday. Oh, well. Serves me right, I guess.

I looked for GF places for lunch and found that Joe's Crab Shack has a GF menu, soCrab pot we went over there.  It's in that same mall next to Margaritaville.  I ordered something called a steampot, where they steam the food, I guess, and bring it to you in a big pot. I ordered the "Ragin' Cajun." Well, it came out totally bland with no seasoning whatsoever. The waitress took it back to the kitchen, and they told her (not to my surprise) that the cajun seasoning was not GF. Well, then why put it on the GF menu as if it is??? They could have said, "don't eat it with the cajun seasoning," like some places do, and I would have known not to eat it. DUH!  Plus it had andouille sausage, which was also just totally bland. Usually that is very spicy.  I was too hungry not to eat it, and nothing else sounded good, so I just ate it. David ordered a salad, so he helped me with the steampot, which was huge. It came with two different kinds of crab legs, shrimp, sausage, corn on the cob, and potatoes. It was a lot of food, but we managed to polish most of it off.

I doubt we'll go back there again. It seems like the restaurant chain Dick's Last Resort, but without the rudeness and insults. They played a lot of disco music, so that was odd. They danced to "Car Wash."

I was not drinking much today, so I mostly drank water and soda.

We went to Margaritaville briefly, and I had a hot chocolate in their coffee place. It took a really long time to get, but it was good. I took it over to the bar and put some Bailey's in it.  Then we went back to our room for our usual nap. The Lyft also took a really long time! hot chocolate

Oh, earlier, we had a Lyft driver who was playing some comedy channel on his radio. It started with Jeff Dunham, who, IMHO, is really offensive. He was making horrible jokes and this driver just let it play. I was annoyed at that. A Lyft driver should know better than to play that for his riders.  Yesterday we had a Lyft driver whose car was really smelly, too! And then, again today, we had a Lyft driver who argued with his wife or girlfriend on his phone the whole time. Usually we have some pretty good Lyft drivers, but we had like, three in a row that were not great.  Yesterday we had one that had Hershey's Kisses to give away to his passengers, so that was definitely my favorite. winky face

pork loinAfter our nap, we went to ElDorado and ate at the steak restaurant there for dinner. I had their pork loin special, which was really good.  There was a LOT of it so I didn't even have dessert. David had escargot and a salmon dish. We had some nice wine, too. Wine with dinner doesn't count as drinking, right? LOL!

After that we played a bit, and we both did some winning at Sam's Town. I won a little playing poker at the bar (it was one of those where you play ten hands at once, which is my favorite kind), and then we went over to another one where I doubled my money.  Then David had a hot streak where he kept winning. That was pretty amazing. They always end, though! Ha ha! But it's good when at least one of us wins, so we can play a bit and not run out of money or get too bored.

We then walked over to this nearby area that has bars and restaurants. It's across the street from the casinos. I don't know what it's called. We sat in this little place and just chatted, had some drinks, and he watched football or something.  It was a nice way to wind down the evening (karaoke would have been better, though! :)

We stopped briefly over at our hotel to get some drinks for the room. Our hotel gift shop is really good and has a lot of neat holiday stuff. I could spend some serious money in there!

David was tired, so he turned in pretty early, about 10 or 10:30. He watched some football on TV before going to sleep. I stayed up on my computer, working on my site, and writing this. It's been a nice trip. It's a shame we have to go home tomorrow! Time sure goes quickly.

I hope you can check out all the photos I post on my Instagram.com!

I brought my Christmas cards along to fill out....but of course, I didn't get them done! I will have to do that this weekend, so I can mail them out Monday. I like to get them done ASAP.

I tried to go to bed about 2am, but I couldn't sleep. I was very itchy. Eventually, I took a shower about 4am. I packed up as much of our stuff as I could, so I can hopefully get a little bit of sleep and still have time to eat breakfast before we leave.

  Saturday 11/24/18

I didn't sleep well last night until about 5am. I wrote my next blog post for my class, since I had time to kill. I slept a little and then I woke up around 9:30. I'm very stuffed up today.

I got sick again today, probably from that buffet on Wednesday night. Oh, well. At least we've been having fun.

buffetWe went to the buffet at Eldorado. They're having a Champagne Brunch. Poor David has to drive, so he can't haven't any of the Champagne. I had a little bit with orange juice. I asked the waitress about talking to the cook because of gluten. Her first reaction was, "I don't think any of the food is gluten free!" but of course, she was wrong. She was nice and was just worried about me getting sick.  This is not as nice of a place as Margaritaville, but at least he did let me know which foods were safe. Their salad bar is not as good, but they do make all their own dressings, and they're all GF.  Just to give you an idea, the Margaritaville salad bar had 3 different types of lettuce, but this one just had iceberg. Yikes. But it's OK. Their ambrosia salad is very good. I also had baked chicken, some candied yams (or sweet potatoes, whatever they are, they were delicious!), some hash browns and their wonderful flourless chocolate cake. It was very good.

When we went back to the room, our key didn't work, so that was annoying. We had to go all the way back to the front desk to get it fixed.

We checked out and drove to the Whole Foods so I could buy some great GF foods. I tried not to overdo it on the sweets or expensive stuff this time around.Whole Foods in Shreveport

After we got home, we went to sleep for a while. I was so tired! Then I worked on my site and mostly just relaxed...

cropped treesThis guy was going to cut back our crepe myrtle trees in the front yard (my neighbor suggested it) last Tuesday, but he never showed up. When we came back, he had done it, without talking to me first. I'm a bit upset about that because he cut them back way too much. I should have double-checked with my neighbor before we left and called to make sure he did nothing until we came back. :( I hope they grow back well. He really butchered them, and you're just supposed to Thanksgiving cardprune them a little. Otherwise the branches droop a lot (from the weight of the flowers) when they try to grow back from such extreme cutting, and they just don't look as good.

We got a nice Thanksgiving card from my SIL! Very cute.

I took down all the indoor Thanksgiving decorations; tomorrow I'll take down the rest.

I was very tired and went to bed, but then I was up all night again, not only with my neck hurting, and itching all over, but my stomach was very upset as well.

  Sunday 11/24/18

Whatever I ate made me really sick today. I guess Shreveport is not a great place to eat GF. Then again, I wasn't as careful as I should be.

We went to the grocery store, as usual. I had extra stuff to get because I'll beDelicious eggnog from Whole Foods starting to make cookies soon. The store didn't have a few things I need, so I had to order them online. I just hope I have time!

I ate some of the yummy foods we bought yesterday. I think the eggnog is safe to eat. Well, safe from gluten, but I can only have a little bit, since it has sugar.

Lately my right knee has been hurting some when I move it a certain way. I hope it's just bursitis and not something worse. I know my new shoes are not as comfortable as I thought. The problem is finding shoes that are big enough to hold the orthopedic inserts without hurting my feet. These shoes fit better without the inserts, but then I don't get the proper support without them.  But if I put in the inserts, then the shoes hurt my toes. Last time I kept trying different sizes, but nothing worked. I have an appointment with the foot doctor on the 11th. Hopefully he can help me.

I still get calluses a lot, and I'm always trying to sand those down and put lotion on Pupusasthem. I have one tiny one on my left foot, that hurts me sometimes when I walk, no matter what I do. It's like a sudden stabbing pain. UGH.

I made these yummy GF Pupusas that we had brought at Whole Foods.

I got a LOT of stuff done today. I unpacked our stuff, straightened up the house, did the laundry and ran the dishes, as well as worked on my site and studied my marketing book.  It was a very productive day. I took down the rest of the Fall and Thanksgiving decorations, and I put them in boxes and away in the garage.

I hope you had a great weekend!

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