To Da Doc To See Whazz Up!

My doctor told me that jogging could add years to my life. He was right—I feel ten years older already.

Scout, The Wonder Dog, alerted us that he was hungry.  I asked him to check the refrigerator.

Now we will have to go out and get fresh Chinese Food for Scout.

The morning was quiet, and we had zero wind last night, a nice change of pace.  We walked the pooch, or better said, he walked us.  We are extending our walking, so now we do almost a mile every morning, which is good for both of us.

We met with the gardener and arranged for him to trim the trees in the backyard this Saturday.  He will be there for probably eight hours.

Mary made a fatal mistake this morning; she asked what I wanted for breakfast.  Before I could stop myself, I answered, “French Toast.”  Well, not only is Mary, a doctor but she is also a short-order cook.  We had turkey bacon, french toast, and Robin’s apple sauce for our meal; a great way to start the day. MAry finally explained to me the difference between toast and French-toast!

Duh, I should have known!

My cleaning folks come today, so we headed that direction as I forgot to leave a check for them.  We visited them for a while, Mary attacked the puzzle, and I fought off a herd of ants which I caused by not putting the lid on the honey very tight. Another puzzlement: If ants are such busy workers, how come they find time to go to all the picnics?

Mary noticed a Mourning Dove sitting on one of my security lights as we left for the doctors’ office. The mourning dove is a member of the dove family, Columbidae. The bird is also known as the American mourning dove, the rain dove, and colloquially as the turtle dove, and was once known as the Carolina pigeon and Carolina turtledove. It is one of the most abundant and widespread of all North American birds.

What is he up to?

Off to the doc to see if I still have a heart.  Well, the verdict is in; I must lower my LDL.  My cholesterol count has a comma.

LDL has been associated with atherosclerosis progression and blockage of the artery lumen because it can carry cholesterol into smaller vessels. But LDL is also essential for carrying lipids that keep the human body alive, including in those small vessels. You can’t live with it; you can’t live without it!

Translation: eat beans, avocados, more veggies and fruits, almonds, dark chocolate, fatty fish; I can do this!

We stopped by my place to move the wash into the dryer and then proceeded to go to Patty’s Place, where we shared a salmon dish.  We are getting off to a good start!

Beware; Smoochs ahead!

After Patty’s, we headed home to watch Two and a Half Men and then crashed, yes, at 8:00 PM.

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The DMV Battle Was Waged!

Scout keeps barking every time there is someone at the door. I don’t know why; it’s seldom for him.

I met Mary early as we have errands to run.  We took Scout, The Wonder Dog, for a walk.  I was curious why he tries to get the mailman, and I found out because Garfield told me.

We called Colleen and chatted with her for a while before heading out to do errands.

What errands do you say? Well, in the list to get was: battery for the dynamo flashlight, bearing grease for the Radio Compass/Tacan/VOR,  bird food for the cuckoo in the cuckoo clock, a box of sparks for spark plugs, bubbles for spirit levels, crocodile Milk, and last but not least, horizontal tent pegs.

Today was DMV day as I needed a replacement license, and Mary is going to get the Real ID. Well, I hit the computer, and for an hour, I got the run-around; I was so exasperated I was ready to throw the computer out the window.  When I looked in my wallet for my credit card, I found my darned license—what a relief. However, Mary still needed a DMV trip.

Mary put all her stuff together, and we made an online appointment.  Well, that was amazing.  As we drove down the street, we could see her moving up in the line on the iPhone.  By the time we got to the Westminister DMV, she had walked right in.  I have used Westminister for thirty years, and they are always pretty good.

Westminister DMV was pretty fast!

After an hour inside waiting in lines, I knew she would be fit to be tied, so I made reservations at the Club. I told Mary, “Some sea mammals sleep with half their brain in a deep sleep and the other half wide awake.  This was developed as an evolutionary mechanism for survival, but biologists have documented a similar mechanism in workers at the DMV”.

We had a much-needed glass of wine and shared our salad and tacos.  Finally, we were back to normal.  I always say a balanced diet is a taco in both hands.

Ready for a glass of wine and a meal!

Mary asked me if I had the Wookie steak taco?  Then she said, “I heard it’s a little Chewie!”

So good!

From there, we returned to Mary’s, and she gathered her goodies to renew her passport.   We went to Walgreen’s and got her picture taken.  Then to the Post Office in Tustin to drop everything so it could be mailed to Austin, Texas, the passport processing center.

Mary gets her mug shot!

It was 5:00 PM, and we made a beeline for the Santa Ana Elks, where I had to vote.  We met Bob Z. there and had a drink with him also meeting up with Bill Capps.

Mary will become an Elk in about four weeks!

Bob is not an Elk; he just looks like one… No, he is an Elk of good standing!

Returning home, we had Mac & Cheese and Mary’s Meatloaf; life is good.  We watched TV for a while, and by 9:00 PM, we were done.  Mary crashed, and I headed home.  I didn’t crash, but I did have a close call driving home.

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Monday We Fiddled!

Good morning. Keep calm and pretend it’s not Monday.

Mary did not have to go to work today, so we stayed at home, watched a movie, and cooked.  We took Scout for his morning walk, which he enjoys so much!

I know someone who has a dog that keeps eating garlic. His bark is worse than his bite.

We made more cauliflower mac and cheese using a different recipe.  It turned out great.

We saw Peanutbutter Falcon, which was really good. It made me think of Sue’s cousin and the fun we had with her over many years.

We called Robin and asked her to stop by, and she did, but by way of the Los Alamitos house, she forgot we were at Mary’s.  By the time she got here, it was dinner time, so we treated her to Magic Mary’s Meatloaf and a margarita (it was national margarita day!)

While we finished cooking, Colleen and Robin jabbered away on the patio.

Thank you, Alexa!

Meanwhile, inside, the business of the meal was getting started.  We made two margaritas, one of which Mary and I shared, and the second one found its way to Robin.

The fixin’s are ready to go!

We first started with a glass of wine, but knowing we were going to do margaritas, I suggested we split the glass of wine.

We had a great meal and a wonderful visit with Robin heading home about 7:00 PM.

My ladies!

I cleaned up, and Mary got ready to watch a movie. We did not last too long as we were a) tired, and b) the movie we selected was a pooper!

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Time To Relax And We Did!

I always take life with a grain of salt. Plus, a slice of lemon. And a shot of tequila.

We diddly-dallied around today, with the first important act being taking Scout, The Wonder Dog, for his morning 1/2 mile walk!  Don’t you hate it when someone answers their own questions? I do.

Almost 0.6 miles, we walked and talked and met all the neighborhood doggies on their walks!

We then watched our Sunday morning televangelist which we enjoy.  Mary worked on taxes and so did I.  Another few hours and we will be ready for the accountant.

We went to the Rib Trader to see our favorite bartender before going dancing.

He should have been a standup comedian!

We departed The Trader at 5″15 PM and headed for Chino to meet up with Donna nad Bob at PF Changs.  The sun had set and I captured a worms-eye view of the sign and the moon.

We arrived right on time and had an amazing meal with Donna and Bob.  From there we went to the dance which was about five blocks away.  We danced until 9:00 Pm before heading home and crashing.  I led our group in the hokey pokey!  In fact, I was addicted to the hokey pokey, but then I turned myself around.

Tomorrow is a work day but Mary does not have any patients so we are free to play!

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It Saturday And All Is Well!

Only Robinson Crusoe had everything done by Friday.

We got busy this morning. We had coffee with Robin, who stayed the night and helped us watch Mission Impossible.

Robin departed about 8:30 AM as she is expecting to have a set of new kitchen appliances delivered this morning.

We watched Mission Impossible from the half-way point again and neither of us remember it at all!  That was a good way to have another cup of coffee and get ready to go to work.

Mary and I decided to work in the garden and we cleaned out one-half of the berry patch; good thing as we could see some of the berries were starting to come out on their stems.  we filled a 90 gallon trash container with the branches and leaves from last years harvest.  Hopefully we will do the rest this Wednesday before I see the heart doctor.

After the trimming we began packing up to go to Mary’s house for a few days.  We looked like the Beverly Hillbillies.

The Lexus was loaded down and poor Scout had only a few inches to spare in the back seat!

After we got to Mary’s and unpacked we headed for the hot tub to relax.  We watched Two And A Half Men and giggled the rest of the evening. Time to rest, the past two days have been a little tough! Tomorrow is tax day and we are going dancing!

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Remembering An Amazing Wife And Fantastic Friend!

Our dead are never dead to us until we have forgotten them. I will never forget Miss Sue as long as I live.

One year ago, at 7:16 AM, my beloved wife and partner of thirty-three succumbed to death after a long and brave fight with several medical conditions.  As it has been said, she is in a better place now and finally pain-free. She was amazing and, for the last several years, endured pain that would make most people give up.

We danced as long as we could! We are at Starlighter’s a few years back.

In the last year, Sue kept telling me her time was short, and I did not believe it at all.  She told me to continue and live life and keep loving our family and friends as we both have all these years.

I was blessed to have Mary, Irene, and Robin with me all day, and they reminded me over and over of Sue’s amazing life and how she affected so many people. I had to smile when Mary said, “I appreciate Sue so much; her training of Paul was so well done!”

I posted a simple note on Facebook and was surprised that over 100 people commented on her amazing life; people from many years ago remember what an amazing person she was.

Probably the nicest tribute from my youngest daughter, who knew Sue so well.  Collen posted:

It’s Been a year today that I heard my father cry for the first time. Hearing the words, she is gone took my breath away. She didn’t have to accept me, but she did. She didn’t have to love me, but she did! I was a rotten teenager when she came into my life, and I didn’t give her a chance till 3 years later, and when I did give her a chance, she had open arms. She was the one who went with me to pick out my wedding dress. She was the one who was there at the birth of daughters, and I even gave my youngest middle name her name; she meant that much to me. Being 3000+ miles away was the worst feeling knowing I couldn’t be there like the rest of the family, and had I known the last day my dad video chatted with me while she was trying to eat (I said dad let her eat I don’t have to watch her), I would have kept that camera on her forever. She never tried to take my mom’s place and always signed her cards with mom, and on the last M of “mom” she attached a 2.  I miss you!!

Mary had two patients this morning and returned at 11:30, so we could go to lunch.  Robin and Irene worked in the kitchen, keeping me laughing as they puttered.  Irene taught Robin how to make the Greek dessert, baklava.  While I was at the market earlier with Robin, I picked up a dozen Granny Smith apples, and miss Robin made apple sauce.

Did You Know?

  • Baklava is the ancestor of strudel. It was brought to Hungary by Turkish invaders in the 16th century.
  • Phyllo dough is named after the Greek word for “leaf,” being “as thin as a leaf.”
  • November 17th is National Baklava Day.
  • The origin of the name is disputed. Turkish etymologists claim an old Turkish origin. Others argue that the word “baklava” may come from the Mongolian root ba?la- ‘to tie, wrap up, pile up’ composed with the Turkic verbal ending ba?la-.

Busy in the kitchen, keeping my mind off things!

The little black doohickies are cloves, but we picked them out before eating.  The apple sauce was chunky, our favorite kind!

Robin made her apple sauce using Sue’s recipe.

We went to lunch at George’s Greek restaurant in Long Beach, a place Sue and I would often go.  Sue would be happy for me finding Miss Mary, and in fact, Sue said on several occasions, “You have a mini-crush on Mary, don’t you?”  I answered, “Yes.”  Mary, Sue, and I have known each other for almost seventeen years; Mary was a member of Starfighter’s Dance Club for years, and we all danced together.

We laughed, remembered, and talked about Miss Sue and her love for Greek food, especially the saganaki.  I told them of the story of Sue and I making saganaki and darned near set fire to the kitchen; we laughed and laughed about that event for years.

We celebrated Sue at one of her favorite places to dine.

I had my favorite right after telling the waiter it was my birthday; the devil made me do it. During the meal, I remembered how many times Sue and I would go there, and she had so many choices of vegetarian dishes.

Poppy had stuffed steak stuffed with spinach and feta cheese.

I told the waiter it was my birthday; I have no idea why BUT I did get a free dessert, spanakopita!

He sang Happy Birthday in Greek with a Mexican accent; it was amazing!

Returning home, the ladies stayed with me for a long time.  Mary attacked the puzzle while Robin continued with her Greek cooking lesson. Irene said we have to move quickly to keep the phyllo dough from drying out.  Robin asked Alexa to play Camp Town Races…  I capture part of their singing.

The dessert was placed into the oven, and after a half-hour or so, we were ready to eat!

So good and not a single calorie (8,454,666,712 calories per bite)

Mary provided adult supervision from a distance; a wise move!  She figured that the calories could not jump from the kitchen to the dining room!

The “Puzzle Girl” hard at work.

There was a break in the cooking while the spanakopita was cooling and absorbing the honey.  All the girls hit the puzzle with vigor.  I stayed away for fear of getting hit by the flailing arms.

Irene and Mary attack the puzzle with vigor. Robin took the picture, but she was there!

Irene departed around 6:00 PM while Mary and Robin stayed, and we watched a Mission Impossible movie on TV. The day was made easier, surrounded by loved ones.  Colleen called a couple of times to do a health check (probably a sanity check) on me.  Son Joe called, Lisa & Pete called, Michele called. I felt loved. My grandkids called or left messages; all indeed loved Sue!

We crashed at 11:00 PM and probably missed half the movies. It was an emotional day.  I almost remembered my son, Mitch, who we lost this year.  He was another amazing person who I was counting on to take care of Sue should I go first.  The Good Lord has a plan, I am sure, so we shall see,

Goodnight, Sweet Sue. I promise to do as you said and continue moving on and being the best Paul I can be.  I love you!

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We Kept Busy Today!

Busier than a one-legged man in a butt-kickin’ contest.

So, I was up at 7:30 AM when my iPhone erupts with a message saying, “This is to confirm your 8:00 AM appointment to have your blood tested”.  Holy baloney, not only am I late, I forgot to study the night before.  So, I ran into the bedroom, tossed on my cleanest dirty shirt, popped on my jeans (Comando mode), and found a pair of shoes that may or may not have matched, and then tossed water on my bozo-like hair and hit it with a hairbrush.

I don’t ever get blood tests usually.  It’s not because I’m afraid of needles or anything.  It’s just that my blood’s under enough pressure as is.

Into the van, I flew like a flash, I opened the windows, and threw out the trash; I made it to the doctor’s office at 8:05 AM, at which time a nice lady came out and said, “It will be a few more minutes; the vampire is stuck in traffic. AAARGH!  I looked like a train wreck and had to sit twenty minutes with the other patients staring at me. Was it the mismatched shoes, or mismatched socks…oops, I had no socks! They acted so superior!

I guess that’s the earliest I’ve ever been late. So, I just ignored them and waited until the vampire called my name!

Mary was at my house when I returned with Scout because we are going to lunch together, and Robin is coming over later on.  She took a look at me and said something like, “Your mother dresses you funny.”  Perhaps it was the fact I only had one sock on? Oh well!

We worked on the puzzle for a while before I got properly attired.  We went to the Santa Ana Elks, where we did “Girls Night Out” with the guys.  On entering the property, we saw the BEHR Headquarters flying Old Glory, and with the wind, it was beautiful!

Seeing that beautiful flag brings a tear to my eyes.

We went into the Elks, and our table was waiting.  Today we had Bill Capps, Mike Andersen, and finally, Bob Z showed up.  We invited Ron, a new Elks, to join us.  He is a retired county sheriff and a really neat guy, and we hope he stays with us on Thursdays.

Nice guys and good friends!

It’s nice to meet new friends. Welcome Ron to “Girls Night Out”

Welcome Ron to the group!

Mary joined me today and is now officially “one of the girls,” go figure! She fits right in and makes for a delightful lunch partner!

That’s me on the left!

Bob arrived late, and we stayed until he finished his lunch which, like me, he devoured in two bites!

From the Elks, we went to visit Jan and bring her some of Mary’s famous Quiche.  We visited her for a while and then went to Mary’s.  We were driving the van because it had Mary’s new area rug, which we installed.  Mary gathered some things, got the mail, and we returned to my place to await Robin’s arrival.  We decided to go to Patty’s Place again for dinner.

I was going to make her potato chips tonight but Patty’s sounded better.

Robin got home before us, so we visited with her for about a half-hour and then headed to Patty’s beach.  I failed to take any pictures because we were enjoying just being together, plus all the banter with the wait staff and Dr. Chuck, Chief Booze Slinger! I did remind them of my termite joke. This termite walks into a bar and asks, “Is the bar tender here?”  I do however remember what happened when Mary walked into Patty’s after last night!

Nick hid the sign well!

Of course, Mary had a reply to that, “A neutron walks into a bar. “How much for a beer?” the neutron asks. “For you?” says the bartender. “No charge.”

I ate too much!

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Mid-Week Crisis; We Are Retired And Can Do Anything!

How do you know your old? People call at 9 p.m. and ask, “Did I wake you?”

This morning Mary got busy and did her “paperwork,” meaning she renewed her MD license, renewed her DEA license to prescribe drugs, and other critical paperwork.  Scout, The Wonder Dog, and I disappeared while Mary and the computer did battle.

After hearing words that I have not heard in years, I crept into the office and saw a blinding snowstorm of paper coming from the desk; I reminded Dr. Mary that a paperless office has about as much chance as a paperless bathroom.

I assisted the damsel in distress!

While Mary fought the computer battles, Scout and I took a long walk, and he got to smell new things; he loved the new adventure.  Just before we left, Scout told his mommy, “A printer consists of three main parts: the case, the jammed paper tray, and the blinking red light.”  He is a smart dog!

We had some more quiche for breakfast and awaited the arrival of my cleaning people and Juan, who washes cars.  While they worked inside and on the cars, Mary and I attacked the garden.

She makes the garden look even better!

We pulled cauliflower and had so much we sent it over to Vicky’s, and Mary told her how to do “Mac & Cheese” using cauliflower.  We worked for a couple of hours, and the garden is looking good.

We had some errands to do as Mary’s doctor’s license needed to be sent in, and she wanted certified mail, so off to the post office, we went.  Then we sent the president’s puzzle back to Colleen assembled.  We glued that puppy together.

Colleen picked a doozy!

Then it struck me, why not go to Patty’s Place and visit the staff.  So, we went home, visited the baby, and then off to Patty’s, where we got a booth and had some food and a drink, or two.  We shared some sliders, we both had soup, and we passed on the bread; it is too much work.

Dinner was going quite well as we had a glass of wine, made our dinner selections; it was peaceful, so far!

Savoring every morsel of the deviled eggs.

Then it happened!  It was horrible; her eyes flashed red, as does the crossing alarm when a train comes by.  She snorted, eyed the eggs, and then I heard a most horrible sound. A few customers yelled and ran out the door.  I tried to tell them that she was OK and it was a natural reaction to food!

CHOMP! WARNING!!! Do not come between Mary and her food!

She regained control after finishing all two dozen eggs.  While she begged for more, I reminded her that we had soup and sliders on the way.  Two customers asked our waiter for a 60-second warning before serving Mary the soup!

We talked about her work and how busy she has been.

OK, back to being serious!  I took another picture of Dr. Mary, and using a new piece of software I purchased; I changed the background! It seems to work pretty well!

In the jungle, the quiet jungle, the lion eats tonight.

We finished our meal with a Chip Shot and then headed home to watch Two And A Half Men.  Candles lit, and a glass of wine we howled through the next thirty minutes. Sometimes that show even shocks me!

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Twosday And We Are Busy Doing Errands

Tuesday is the day I actually start the week on Monday. I just deal with the depression of the weekend ending. 

We are up and going because we have appointments.  Scout, The Wonder Dog, has a beauty shop appointment in Orange at 10:30 AM and Mary has an MRI appointment nearby at 11:30 AM.  First-class care for the pampered pet. Did you wonder why Scout didn’t go to the MRI appointment?

Now it becomes obvious!

A few minutes after the MRI, we decided to go to the Orange Elks Lodge, but when we walked up to the door, it was closed!  So we went next door and dined inside, having a veal piccata and a glass of wine!

Time to pick up the pup! We went to The Clip Joint, and Scout was modeling his new do!  Prancing back and forth, we knew he was handsome, and he stunk pretty also!  On the way home to Los Alamitos, he demanded the window be down so he could smile at the passing cars.  I swear, he got three or four wolf whistles.

The great pleasure of a dog is that you may make a fool of yourself with him, and not only will he not scold you, but he will make a fool of himself too.

Just plain pretty!!! And he knew it!!

After returning home, Mary and I went to the local big-box hardware stores.  She was looking for an area rug, so I brought the van.  The van was happy to get out and about.

We found what we needed, and then it was off to the market for milk, half-and-half, artichokes, and other necessities of life; Mary goofed and let me go in alone!

Now it was time to get serious.  Mary whipped up a Spinach & Mushroom Quiche; spectacular meal fit for a king!  I told Mary of the time I was in French, and I asked the barmaid for a quickie; the man next to me said, ‘It’s pronounced quiche.’  Hey, French is difficult!

Quiche originated in the German kingdom of Lothringen, where it was called Lothringer speckkuchen. This region was under Germanic rule from the 4th to the 17th century.

I do have one rule about quiche:  Never order barbeque in a place that also serves quiche.

Transfer to the pie plate and then into the oven!

We were worried whether the mixture would fit the pie pan, so we added aluminum foil below the plan.

Cooking up a storm!

It smelled wonderful as it cooked, and it was beautiful when we took it out.

It has so set for a little bit, and then we dive into it!

Artichoke: The only vegetable you have more when you finish eating it than you had when you started.  Well, we don’t care as we both love artichokes and we had two fantastic ones.

We watched Two And A Half Men, and yes, the old man fell asleep. I was out cold at 8:00 PM.  When I work up at 8:30 PM, Mary was gone, the kitchen was spotless, she took my job away!  Our house is clean enough to be healthy and dirty enough to be happy.

We crashed at 9:00 PM because tomorrow is nothing, zip, nada!  It’s like a holiday for retired people!


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Monday Went By In A Flash!

Even the best weeks start with Monday.

Mary had to work today but not until 1:30 PM so we had the morning to goof off and we did, we finished that pesky president’s puzzle.  These dark suits were killers!  We showed the puzzle to Colleen and said we would call back when it was done.

Colleen picked a doozy

We had omelets for breakfast and then got ready to go drop Mary off at her work.  Since she was going to be there for only an hour or so, I decided to drive her and I went to Michaels and got the goodies needed to seal the puzzle; it is going back from wence it came!  I also went to Trader Joe’s and got some necessities of life.  We called Colleen on the Bat Phone again and let her know we were done.

We skipped dinner as the brunch was pretty filling.  We did call Robin to arrange for Friday.  She and Irene are going to be here as it is one year since my dear Sue passed away. Mary will be joining us before lunch.  I am going to look through the sympathy cards for the first time; I was not able to do it a year ago.  We plan to go to the Greek restaurant and enjoy a meal and with Irene with us, it will be fantastic!

We returned home and decided to watch a movie.  Mary made it through about ten minutes of “Love Story” while I watched the whole thing remembering back fifty years; OMG, fifty-years!  And yes, I cried at the last; it hit home! Allie McGraw was a beauty indeed!

We crashed at 10:00 PM as tomorrow is also a bust day.

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