Winter’s log, earthdate 201607.09

04.18 pm

I must apologise for not writing anything yesterday – but I didn’t have anything to write it on! (well, I did have a very small half a screen that I probably could have used, but I didn’t want to give myself a headache and a very bad case of eyestrain!) What happened was that Julian had to go out to pick up the dry cleaning, get some more coffee, and do the shoping for our dinner tonight, all of which was going to take several hours. Not a problem, I was busy looking for some sort of “book-writing” program, or utility, and after I’d finished with that – that is, as soon as I found something that I thought I’d be able to work with, I was going to make an early start on my blog. So, there’s Julian, the computer guru and all-round “fix-it” guy for anything electrical and/or computerish, and there’s not-quite technophobic, but most definitely not computer-smart me, sitting at home, happily playing around with strange programs that I’ve never even heard of before – all because I’ve taken it into my cotton-woolly head to write a Family Recipe Book. So I suppose you can all guess what happened next, can’t you! Yes. I did “strange things” to my computer (I accidentally turned it into a Windows 8 machine, where until now, we’ve been very careful to keep it looking like a Windows 7 machine – even though it is, in fact, running Windows 8!) Neither Julian nor I like the plain, flat, boring Windows 8 start screen, with no familiar “Start” button down in the bottom left-hand corner of the Task Bar – in fact there’s no Task Bar at all – just a mesmerisingly bland and flat screen, with a jumble of different coloured rectangles strewn across it. Anyway, for days I’ve been Googling “Word Processors”, and “Page Layout” programs, and “Self-Publishing” Aps, and I suppose I was starting to get a bit blasé about it all… So, when I saw “Microsoft Publisher” sitting there in Google’s list of possibilities, I simply thought “Oh well, in for a penny, in for a pound – I might as well have a look at it,” – and I clicked on the link… I should tell you all at this point that I’d seen “Microsoft Publisher” mentioned in some of the reviews I’d been reading, but somehow or other, my eyes always glazed over at the beginning of the word “Microsoft”, and I never did get to read those bits… and I know why – it’s because I dislike all things Microsoft! I hate Word, and Excel is about as stiff and clumsy as a stone golem!

For a moment, the world seemed to slip sideways underneath me. My screen was doing strange things! Letters, and lines of words flashed fleetingly across it, as my eyes tried to make sense of what they were seeing – then just as suddenly as it had happened, it was over – and I was staring at a mesmerisingly bland and flat Windows 8 screen! Ladies and gentlepersons, I can tell you all very truthfully that I was totally gob-smacked! And horrified, but mostly, just plain angry! Microsoft had hi-jacked my machine, and inserted its ugly Windows 8 persona into my setup, without let or hindrance! And as if that wasn’t enough, I didn’t have a clue how to work with it, or how to even find anything! Well, I suppose I could have had a fiddled around with it, to see if I could work it all out, I mean, how hard can it be?! But I’ve been well trained! All I’d probably do was break it further, and having been told often enough by Julian to “Google it!”, or failing that, to obey the seventy-fifth and a half rule of computer management, which is “when in doubt, don’t, and call me!” – Julian is a klutz with sharp and hot things – I’m a klutz with electronics and programs. ‘Nuff said!

So I called him on his mobile. When I’d told him what happened, he knew immediately what I’d done (he’s clever like that!) and, had he been here he could have fixed it in about two seconds flat – but he wasn’t here, and it would have been too painful to try and talk me through it, so I just had to grab my Kindle, go and sit in the lounge room with my feet up, and read, until he got home. Which was around dinner time. So by the time I got back to my now thoroughly normalised computer, it was well after nine o’clock, and I really didn’t feel like sitting down and writing 1.5 thousand words.

We were supposed to be going out early yesterday to have my Warfarin blood test done, but we didn’t. I did manage to do a somewhat shortened walk on the treadmill yesterday morning, but my blisters just weren’t up to walking up and down stairs, my ear wasn’t any better, and I was feeling a bit headachy… so I stayed home, and Julian went out (see above!) So yesterday, for me, anyway, was a bit of an anti-climax – I played WoW in the morning, broke for lunch and looked for Recipe Writing software, and had my machine hi-jacked by Microsoft, whereupon I retired to the lounge room to read and doze until Julian got home. Pretty exciting day… NOT! :/

Today we slept in a bit… well, alright, too much…and neither of us ended up going for our walk this morning! We used the joint excuses that (a) it was too late, and (b) my toes were still too sore – and in both cases, quite true! We did, however, go and have my Warfarin blood test done – hopefully we’ll get the results SMS’d through to us before midnight tonight. We also went to the Nursery on Blackburn Road near the Ferntree Gully Road off-ramp to look for planters large enough to grow carrots in, but they didn’t have anything suitable, so we decided to go to Bunnies, just down the road from us here. We’d just got onto Burwood Highway on our way back from the Nursery, when I remembered that we were supposed to stop off at the Vet’s to pick up some more Loxicom drops for Flipper (they’re anti-inflammatory drops that we put in her food, for her arthritis) So we drove past Bunnies, and all the way back to Whitehorse Road Blackburn for those, turned around, and drove all the way back to Bunnies again! Bunnies, thank heavens, did have the right sort of planters, and we ended up getting three of those, a couple of bags of small pebbles to use as “draining stones” in the bottom of the planters, and about four or five bags of garden soil to put on top of the pebbles – and then we came home!

After lunch, Julian went out and set the planters up on sleepers (big chunks of wood!) placed securely between the two veggie boxes, and finally managed to get the rest of our winter crops planted! I think there are still a few herbs to go in, but they can live quite happily on the sheltered back deck for a bit longer. When I went out to have a look at everything, I looked at my new little fig tree and thought that he looked very lonely in that corner, all by himself… I think that later on, it might be nice to plant a nectarine tree, and either an apricot, or a loquat tree in what’s left of the garden bed underneath the back fence… Julian just said “We’ll see…”, which in “Mother-talk” to their children means “No!”, but he’s not my mother, and I’m not his child, so… 😉 We’ll see! 🙂

Tonight for dinner Julian’s cooking a very nice looking recipe wot I found in the on-line Taste magazine, called “Rich beef and stout casserole” There’s a fair bit of preparation in it, but boy, the house smells divine! Yum, yum! I’m looking forward to dinner (which will be late again, but that’s OK…) Tomorrow night I’ll let you all know what it was like, and if it turns out to be another “keeper”, I’ll transcribe the recipe for posterity and post it, with the appropriate accreditation, on my “Recipes…” page! 🙂

And that’s really all we’ve been up to, so now I shall move on to the good bits!

Food stuff. Yesterday for lunch we had wraps – fairly plain, but really nice! Naturally there was our usual basil-pesto hummus butter-substitute, with ham, Halloumi cheese, and red capsicum. Last night for dinner we had Three Island Beef sausages, mashed potatoes, half a Roma tomato, and steamed green beans, and for dessert I had a “bald-kiwi-fruit-brown” Nashi pear, and a small bowl of the yummy Coles-brand, very low-calorie Rice Pudding. Today for lunch we had sandwiches, made from the very tasty whole-meal bread with the sesame-seed and poppy-seed sprinkled crust – again they were fairly plain, with a smearing of real butter (instead of our usual basil-pesto hummus) ham, cheese, and some Beerenberg Tomato Chutney. Most delish! 🙂 And of course I’ve already told you what we’re having for dinner tonight – the “Rich beef and stout casserole”, which we’ll have with plain, steamed rice. I’ll either have the last Fuji apple for dessert, with my usual small bowl of Coles-brand, very low-calorie, scrumptious Rice Pudding, or if the apple’s a bit past its “Use By” date, I’ll have my last Corella pear.

Weigh-in yesterday morning. Was quite astonishing! I went from 63.8 kg…. to 63.8 kg! I stayed the same, for the third day in a row! Even after that lunch I had at the Shingle Inn, plus the fact that my feet have been too sore for me to be able to do a full walk every morning, and this morning I didn’t walk at all! (though I did walk around the Nursery, and Bunnies instead!)

Weigh-in this morning. Was still astonishing! I went from 63.8 kg to 63.9 kg – up one point – well within the mythical “margin of error” area! I’m pretty sure I’ll go up tomorrow though… (Winter prays to the ghods of E.coli not to let her go up too much, please!)

Let’s see… what else is there to tell you all… Auric and Dapple are well, as is Flipper… Julian’s well, but tired after all the work in the garden that he did today, and moi-même? apart from my blisters (on both feet!) my bunged up ear (it hasn’t changed in the slightest, despite the horrible and disgusting ear drops for five days!) and mildly aggravated sinuses, I’m as fit as a fiddle! 🙂 Tomorrow, which is a Sunday, we’ll be Daintily Dancing Down Draenor Drives, slaughtering any hapless monsters who happen to get in our way – I’ll fill you all in on our adventures there tomorrow night – whether we died or not, and if we did, how many times, and what was it that actually killed us? And that, gentle readers, is about “it” from me again this evening! Do call in again tomorrow night though, to find out if my weight did go up, and exactly how much it went up! And to see how Xãnthe and Jemimah went in Draenor, and whether Auric and Dapple have had any more “fits of the floaties”! But until then, do try very hard to bee good, remember that sleeping is the healthiest thing you can do without doing anything, and don’t forget to look after yourselves, to keep warm and dry in this cold, wet weather, and to always drive carefully… but above all, please don’t forget to stay safe! 🙂 ciao, all! 🙂

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