Sunday, April 15, 2007

Saving BIG Money

We needed some window washing stuff, and other sundries, so I drove on over to Menards for a stroll through aisle after well-organized aisle of groovy stuff. I adore hardware stores. I feel like I had a religious experience this morning - I didn't want to leave. Well, not quite... but I did have fun! I swear, if I could still conceive I'd name my next kid Menard.

I picked up some rope for the window project (Project Sash), a broom for the basement/laundry, checked out showers for our new downstairs bathroom and looked into patio furniture and sheds. And I found one! I bought one of those Rubbermaid sheds (it would have been nice to be able to afford the groovy looking wood one, but it's just not in our budget.)

The shed came in two HUGE and heavy boxes, so I realized that I wouldn't be able to get them home in our little Hyundai. I also checked out some wicker furniture and found lovely stuff - some really nice, redish brown pieces that are a blend of natural and composite materials, so I think they'll weather well. I actually went a little nuts and bought one chair more than I should have, so tomorrow I'll investigate the Menards return policy.

And, of course, there was a white ladder-back rocker which I have coveted for a long time - and which would be good for Gerry to sit in outside - on sale until tomorrow for $49. Sold!

All of this led to the inevitable rental of the truck. This was amazingly painless, $20 for 1-1/2 hours, with lots of help to get my stuff into the truck. One guy who helped me was very cute - and a KNITTER! He said he taught himself and I encouraged him to drop by the Yarnover on Saturday (we'll see...) The guy who helped me with the shed boxes was SO HAPPY when I suggested backing the truck over to the palette of sheds so he could just slide one into the bed of the truck - and when I got it home I was able to back it into the garage a bit so I could just slide it out and open the boxes right there.

It took me more than the estimated 50 minutes to put together - more like 2 hours and I'm not 100% thrilled with the way I got it together (I want to take a rubber mallet to some of the more recalcitrant corners - and it didn't help that once I got it together I hated where it was so I dragged it across the yard over by the fence.) Then I set up the outdoor furniture, washed the windows, put the turkey breast in the oven (it's smelling SO good!) and hosed down the screens (I need to put them up tomorrow - just in time for the lovely warm weather we're having!)

All of this physical work feels very good - it's tiring, but it's necessary for me right now, mentally, to put my body 100% into something. On Saturday I set up our office upstairs (lots of moving bookshelves from one room/floor to another, lots of unpacking stuff that we've needed for WEEKS, and Gerry handled the computer / printer setup) so now Gerry has a comfortable and well organized place to hang out upstairs when he doesn't feel like coming downstairs, but doesn't want to stay in bed.

He's feeling very tired, very beat up (especially his stomach) but overall his spirits are good. In most part this is because he's taking his pain meds, and the doctor phoned in a prescription for an anti-nausea drug. He ate dinner last night - quite a coup - and had a good nights sleep. A very good day.

A note of praise for the local CVS - when I called our doc on Sat to get something for Gerry's constant nausea, she phoned it into CVS. They called to say they didn't have the drug, but they'd check around for it. Long story short, they found it at the Walgreens down the street, called and told me, and gave me directions to the Walgreens. This is SO different from our experience with CVS in New Jersey, and we are SO grateful that this annoyance is out of our lives during this stressful period.

Tomorrow a doctor's visit to our PCP, talk about a handicapped sticker for the car and questions about applying for disability. Tomorrow I also send in a new sweater that I just finished for VK (it's SO groovy - I'm really happy with it!) and send that special project to a friend which I've owed her since December.


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Anonymous Barbara A.M. said...

Annie -

You got more done today than go,girl! After church, I put on "yard" clothes and proceeded to get all things dead off of all things trying to live. That took a couple hours, but it looks so much better. I just had to comment on how much I enjoy reading about your Minnesota experiences. As a lifelong Midwest native, I think I take a lot of things for granted. I hope you continue to get good medical care for Gerry and I pray that he'll turn a significant corner soon and start feeling stronger.

April 15, 2007 6:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Dear Ones,

Applying for disability is a very tricky process. I am a nurse practitioner and on disability, if I can be of assistance please e-mail me. There is a book printed by Soc Sec that lists the language to use in the application. The entire premise is based on things you are NOT able to do that prevent you from working, thinks like pain don't count... I was able to review the book at the medical school library that is in my state. I believe it is referred to as the blue book on disability. Be sure and mention all your activities of daily living that are impaired. Variability in day to day or hour to hour abilities is important to mention also. Doctors are not necessarily skilled at helping with the application, in particular they are geared to what you CAN do, your app will be judged by what you CAN't do.

Be sure and contact me if I can be of any help, if it is rejected on the first try you can appeal but most people get a lawyer at that point and they take up to 1/3 of the arrears.

Good Luck

April 15, 2007 8:08 PM  
Blogger Lynn said...

I'm glad the weather is helping out your state of being. It really is amazing how strong Mother Nature can truly be even when we don't recognize it as such.

Good Luck.

April 15, 2007 8:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That sounds like a really productive and satisfying day. You're tired after it, but for good, physical, sleep-making reasons.
Nutrition is my field and it's where I'd like to be helpful if possible. Let me know. (My google acct keeps losing my password, otherwise I'd be able to log in and you'd have my e-mail)

April 15, 2007 8:40 PM  
Blogger Knitting Geek said...

Hopefully things will continue to progress. The handicapped tag will be a blessing for when Gerry feels like getting out and about (I have been really pleased and surprised with how many stores have electric scooters for their patrons). The only real downside is that many people in this part of the country (N Texas) feel that the handicapped spots are there for their convenience, and they do not need to be bothered with the appropriate placard to park in them.

April 16, 2007 8:00 AM  
Anonymous Susan P said...

We continue to hold you and your family in our prayers. Hang in there, Annie.

The Lord be with you,

April 16, 2007 9:57 AM  
Anonymous polarbears said...

It's amazing how gettng yourself physically tired can help when you are under an emotional strain! I went through a bad patch some years ago that coincided with packing my house by myself while my husband was already working at our new location. I'd do 20 some boxes each day and then take a long walk to relax and get the heavy lifting kinks out. Being that tired made it so much easier to sleep without the worry and sadness intruding.

I never cease to be amazed at how much really useful information and help people are offering you. Wish I could do the same.

April 16, 2007 10:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You probably know this but offer Gerry foods that are high in calories and protein. Quiche, mac and cheese, chicken and mashed pototoes, eggs, any cheesy stuff that appeals to him. The calories and protein will help give him strength; protein alone will help nausea. "Ensure" is good to get some calories in him. Your family is in my thoughts.

April 16, 2007 11:20 AM  
Anonymous Jen D. said...

Oh Annie...I am so amazed at the strength you show us in this incredibly difficult time. I admired you as a knitter. I found your blog because your upbeat attitude and kindness on TV made me want to know more about you. Now I know that you are not only kind, but that you will find the best in each day, no matter how awful. It would be an honor in my life to know you, and I am grateful that you have shared so much with strangers peeking in. I have only been checking in on your a few months now, but you have shown yourself to be the best kind of person, in my humble opinion. Take care of yourself, and your family. You are all in my thoughts and prayers.

Jen D in California.

April 16, 2007 9:23 PM  
Anonymous Debra said...

I am pleased you are dealing with the whole disabilty process,your kids will get benefits too;anything to ease your burden. You have to prove that Gerry can't do any job,not just the one he is trained to do.

April 17, 2007 4:49 PM  
Blogger Cookie said...

I don't think I would go so far as to name a child Menard, but I sure do miss that place since we moved to Texas.
Thanks for my laugh today.


April 29, 2007 9:23 PM  

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