Wednesday, March 30, 2016

2016/Mar/30 - Reality Strikes Back!

Hi There.  I had an exciting day today!

Remember yesterday, how Grump was so happy to be free once-and-for-all of the miserable Lizard Pit where he used to work?  But remember warning that we need to "watch our spending"?

Part of Grump's "plan" was for all of us to AVOID GOING TO THE DOCTOR OR USING ANY MEDICAL SERVICES until May, because his health insurance ended yesterday at midnight, and to continue using it would require paying ridiculous COBRA rates.

No problem, right?  We simply cancelled some doctor's appointments we had and rescheduled them for May.


The day started off fine.  Kuya was dropped off at school, Sweetie and Grump ran some errands, then had a fantastic lunch at the fantastic FOJ restaurant in North Macon.  After lunch, Sweetie wanted to buy a small gift or two for Dodong, whose birthday is tomorrow.  Well ..... whilst shopping for Dodong, we got the call: Kuya had been stung by a bee, and seemed to be having a reaction to it.

To make a long story short, the school had to call an ambulance to take Kuya to the Emergency Room.  The paramedics worked on him a bit to stabilize him, then he was brought to the hospital.

An Ill Kuya

The good news is that with proper treatment Kuya quickly recovered.

Feeling Better!

So now, to pay for the ambulance, hospital room, doctors, and nurses, we're going to have to sign up for COBRA.  Because of some needless bureaucratic putzing, (thanks for NOTHING, GEICO!!), we may not even be able to get onto COBRA for a few more weeks, during which time we will have to make minimum payments from our own depleted savings.  But considering the potential outcomes, we're blessed that our main concerns right now are financial.

The moral of this story is that life is fragile.  Be very, very nice to your loved ones, and be very, very nice to everyone else too.  (Even the jerks you have the misfortune to run into, because they need it the most!)


Tuesday, March 29, 2016

2016/Mar/29 - Freedom!

Old Grump is finally free of the Lizard Pit!  Yes, today was his LAST DAY at work.  Granted, he starts another job this Thursday, (the 31st), but at least he won't have to suffer being stuck in the Lizard Pit anymore.

This departing was made all the sweeter when operations called him for a problem.  "Gee, I'm sorry.  I'd love to help you, but I don't work for your company anymore."  Heeheehee ......

Other than that ..... it was a BEAUTIFUL day here in central Georgia.  Dinner, (since we're short of funds AND going to be spending lots of money we don't have on a trip to Columbus, GA), was rice and egg, and leftover camote.

After dinner we all went out for ice-cream to celebrate Grump's emancipation.  But, if we don't start watching our spending, this emancipation will turn into emaciation.


Monday, March 28, 2016

2016/Mar/28 - Monday Again

It was another back to work/school Monday.  FINALLY, after three very, very long weeks off, Kuya returned to school.  This was not a minute too soon for Sweetie and Lola, who were getting very worn-out from watching two young boys.

It was also Old Grump's next-to-last day at work at the Lizard Pit.  As it turns out there's lots and lots of work to be done, so Grump just couldn't goof off.  He'll probably work a full day tomorrow too.  Phooey!

We were all looking forward to a family trip to Columbus this weekend, when tragedy struck: Grump opened the American Express credit card bill.  $950.00!!  Holy galukaflop!!  THIS IS DREADFUL!  I'm not sure how we're gonna manage a weekend trip on top of expenses like that.

I don't have much else for today, so, since it appears Old Man Winter has been banished for the year, how about some pics from early 2010 back in Columbia, SC.  Yes, it snowed in Columbia, SC that year!

Trees covered with snow
Old Grump and a very young Kuya
Sweetie and a very young Kuya


Sunday, March 27, 2016

2016/Mar/27 - Happy Easter!

Happy Easter to one and all!

If you're a Christian, then the events of Easter are extremely important to you, because Christ fulfilling his promise to rise up from the grave is what your faith is based on.  (At least I think so.)  If you're not a Christian, then celebrate the hope and loving self-sacrifice expressed by the Easter story.

As for me, I believe that ultimately we all worship the same Higher-Power, and that the differences in the various religions are like the different descriptions given of an elephant by the blind men.

If you're an atheist ....... well, then God help you!  As the old joke goes:

Nietzsche:  God is dead.

God:  No.  Nietzsche is dead!

Grump slept in late this morning, nearly making us all late for church.  We had a nice buffet luncheon at the church after church services, then once back home Grump climbed into bed again, and snoozed for an hour or so.

Meanwhile Sweetie painted her fingernails and toenails.  She looks really sexy now!

After waking Grump up, we went to Texas Roadhouse at the Riverside Mall for an early dinner.

Lola and Kuya were fascinated by the free roasted peanuts.

Dodong was fascinated by the arrival of the next table's food!

It was a rainy, but nice, Easter for all of us.  We hope your day was wonderful too!


Saturday, March 26, 2016

2016/Mar/26 - Hooray for Saturday!

Maybe it was because we went to bed early last night.  Maybe it was because it finally rained really hard overnight, clearing out some of the stupid pollen.  Or maybe it was just because we're weird!  At any rate, we were up very early this morning.

After a leisurely breakfast we did what we usually do on weekends, namely, go shopping!  We went to Sam's Club in the morning, the Riverside Mall in the afternoon, then did a bit of grocery shopping in the evening.  There were several good sales at the mall.  Just think of all the money we saved!

I posted lots of pics of the wonderful local loropetalums over at, but here are a few more if you haven't found your way to that website yet:

What I find really interesting is that here in central Georgia we have what look to me to be holly bushes with berries on them NOW, in the spring!  I also associated holly berries with winter and Christmas, so these holly bushes must be confused.  (Or from Australia?)

The cherry trees are blooming in Macon now, but what with the weird weather we've had recently, I don't think they'll be as pretty as prior years.  Hopefully I'll be wrong!

Old Grump got one of the daffodils he transplanted to bloom this year, so he's happy.

We got this orange flowered plant, (don't know what it is), to over-winter here in central Georgia in a large pot next to the house.  I'm not sure if that is a normal occurrence or not, because we did have a relatively mild winter.

Finally, here are a couple pics Grump took whilst shopping with Sweetie at the Riverside Mall.

Grump and Sweetie

Peace y'all!

2016/Mar/25 - TGIF

Despite having only three days left before he moves on to greener fields, Grump was worked very hard at his job today.  There's actually a problem with a system he used to work on, and he might be worked very hard right up until the moment he finally leaves.  Phooey!

On a more pleasant note ..... his coworkers took him out for lunch, which was nice.

Sweetie is about going crazy from having a two year old and a very bored seven year old home with her and Lola all day, every day, day after day after day!  Kuya's school starts up again this Monday, and as far as Sweetie is concerned it's not a moment too soon!

Sweetie was also busy around the yard today; she cranked up the lawnmower, and mowed the grass in the front yard!  She did a good job too!  She also attempted to attach a plant hanger to the side of the house, but was less successful with that effort.

An Upside-Down Plant Hanger

Dinner was hamburgers from Five Guys Burgers and Fries for the adults, (Lola, Sweetie, and Old Grump, who allegedly is an adult), and cheese pizza sticks from Papa Johns for the boys, (Kuya and Dodong).

We were all exhausted from our bodies having to fight all this stupid pollen, so we went to bed early.

WonderPoll Madness!

1.  Which is the biggest lie:  a) when a woman says, "I'll be ready in five minutes", or b) when anyone says, "I have read the terms of use"?

Proof that most of the respondents to this question were woman is readily revealed by the fact that "b" was chosen 79% of the time.  (I answered "a".)

2.  If a loved one was bitten by a zombie, would you have what it takes to put them down?  A) Yes, but I would feel very bad.  B) Yes.  I didn't really like them much.   C) No.  I would ask someone else to do it.   D) No. They are my family and I love them.

Fortunately "A" was the most popular choice, (mine as well), selected by 54%.  Of the two poor choices, only 8% of respondents admitted to being jerks and chose "B", while 17% chose to be irresponsible bleeding hearts and let the apocalypse spread by choosing "D".  "C", the second best choice, was selected by 21%.

3.  What was/is your favorite childhood game?  A) Freeze Tag.  B) Simon Says.  C) Ring Around the Rosie.  D) Hide and Seek.  E) Jump Rope.

What, no "Doctor"?

Of those choices, mine would be "D", followed closely by "B".  And you know what?  "Hide and Seek" must be very popular, because "D" was chosen by 59% of respondents.  Next most popular was "A" with 27%.  (What is "Freeze Tag" anyway?)  "Simon Says" came in a distant third with 8%, followed, not surprisingly, by "E" with 4%, (too much work!), and "C", (which is a stupid game!), with only 2%.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

2016/Mar/24 - Another Day!

Stupid pollen!!  Grump went to bed early last night, feeling dizzy from all this stupid pollen, while Sweetie tossed and turned all night, unable to sleep due to the steroids she is taking to help her sinuses because of this stupid pollen.


I think the most exciting news is that it finally rained tonight.  Maybe now some of this stupid pollen will wash away, and we will be able to breathe and see and sleep again.

The second most exciting news of the day was our dinner.  We got some yummy food from Fresh Market: sushi, which Sweetie and Grump shared, and baby back ribs, which Lola and Grump shared. (Sweetie won't eat pork because she's a Seventh Day Adventist.)

Despite having only four days left at the Lizard Pit, Grump worked on lots of issues today, and will probably be working late tomorrow.  Crazy, huh?

Hopefully there will be less stupid pollen floating around tomorrow!


2016/Mar/23 - Blah

The day started out nice enough, cool but clear.  But nice enough for a "hump" day.

Five more days at the Lizard Pit, and Old Grump is free!

It hasn't rained here in a while, and the pollen buildup is beginning to get downright irritating.  Poor Sweetie had to go to the doctor yesterday and get steroids to help her deal with this mess, Kuya is sneezing and clearing his throat on a continual basis, while Grump, being in denial, continues to drive with his windows down.  ("If my eyes get itchy I'll just scratch them!"  Okay Grump.  Whatever you say!)

While the cherry trees are just getting started, the native redbuds are in full bloom.  I think redbuds are often overlooked, so here are a couple pics to enhance their "image":

I believe, (but am not certain), that North America has a lot of terrestrial orchids.  While some of these are held in high esteem, (e.g., the "lady slippers"), most of them have flowers that are too tiny to attract much attention.

I tried to take a pic of what I think is a pretty orchid with very small flowers, but the wind wouldn't stop, and all my pics were blurry.  This is the best of the bunch:

Peace y'all!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

2016/Mar/22 - Cold Morning / Beautiful Day

The day started out COLD!  It probably got down cold enough to hover just around the freezing point.  A few more degrees lower, and many of our plants would have been battered.  Fortunately Spring held back against this late assault of Old Man Winter, and tender new foliage was spared.

Grump has only five more days left at his stinking' job.  He's starting to enjoy being at work now, because no one can really bother him, (much), but the reality of an impending cash crunch, (thanks mostly to the mess in health insurance costs these days), is dampening his spirits a bit.  Oh well ...... there's more to life than money, right?

Sweetie made a delicious dinner of fried chicken legs and rice.
Chicken Wings and Rice.  Goji Berry flavored komucha almost visible in upper left corner.

Dodong enjoyed his chicken wings!

WonderPoll of the day:   Does the voice in your head sound the same as your voice when you speak?

Of course it does!  But would you believe that only 38% of respondents agreed with me?  Just WHO the heck are they listening to?


2016/Mar/21 - Monday

Bad news ..... no pics today.  

Grump stayed up too late last night puttering away at the computer, (he did get some pics loaded to, so it wasn't a complete waste of time), so he was very tired and grumpy today.  Sweetie was also tired, and suffering from allergies.  So maybe that is why neither of them remembered Kuya's doctors appointment.

Considering that we will be losing health insurance temporarily with Grump's job change, this was a particularly thick-headed move on their part.

Oh well ..... Grump and Sweetie did have a wonderful lunch, (which with all the silly expenses they're running up now they probably can't afford), at the wonderful FOJ in North Macon.  Good food makes you feel real good!

Other than that, it was a typical Monday.  Sometimes the best thing about a Monday is when it's over!

WonderPoll of the day:  Would you rather, a) lick peanut butter off a hobo's foot, b) take a drink of air freshener, c) break your arm, or d) sleep on a bed full of thumbtacks?

Well that's truly disgusting!  Where's the "none of the above" option?

I suppose I would pick "a", because it seems the least harmful, but would you believe that the leading choice was "c", "break your arm"?  48% of respondents believed that breaking a bone was the best option.  Next was "b", "drink air freshener", at 26%.  The remaining two choices got 13% each.  Weird!

Peace, y'all!

Sunday, March 20, 2016

2016/Mar/20 - Happy Sunday

We all woke up early, and after some grumbling from the Old Grump, headed out to church.

Sweetie in her Nice Church Outfit

After church we ate lunch at La Parrilla Mexican restaurant the Riverside Mall.  We think this is the best Mexican restaurant in Macon, and we all enjoyed our meal.  (Even Lola, who can sometimes be fussy with her food, and Grump, who can be fussy with everything!)

Sweetie and Grump at the restaurant
Lola and Kuya at the restaurant

Dodong at the restaurant, playing with his balloon

After lunch we were back home, and soon had company!  Kuya and Dodong's friends, (and their parents, of course!), came over for a visit.  The kids played, the adults talked, and Grump snuck off to the bedroom and took a nap.

Hi Mr. B!

Later in the evening we had a pleasant surprise.  Our neighbor's had some guest from Louisiana visiting, and they had brought some boiled crawfish with them.  Yummy, yummy, yummy!

All-in-all, a most pleasant day!

By the way ...... we have our photo blog, , up and running now.  Currently we have some pics of Macon, and some pics of the Atlanta Botanical Garden, stored there. More pics are on their way!


Saturday, March 19, 2016

2016/Mar/19 - Interesting Day

The day started off WAY TOO EARLY.  Old Grump had to drive into his "soon-to-be-ex" stinking job at 6:00 am.  Yuck!

Sweetie was gonna come with him, but she didn't sleep well the night before, so she stayed home, and in bed, with the boys.

Kuya, Dodong, and Sweetie, in Bed!

Once Grump got home from work he was very tired, so he took a nap until close to lunchtime.

Lunch itself was a wonderful tuna dish Sweetie cooked up.

Dodong approved!

Hi Dodong!

After lunch we ran various errands, (mostly shopping), then after getting dinner for Lola and the kids, Grump and Sweetie went to Brasserie Circa in North Macon for an exceptionally wonderful dinner.  They actually weren't expecting the food to be as good as it was.  If you're ever looking for a fine dining place in North Macon, we'd recommend you give Brasserie Circa a try.

A Fantastic Sushi Roll!

Grump had his mouth full at this moment

A very happy couple!

WonderPolls of the day:

1. Do you smell your socks after you take them off?  a) Yes, I can finally admit it! , b) No, that's disgusting!

Okay, okay ..... I'll admit to answering "Yes".  I'm in the minority here, as only 34% of respondents agree with me.  66% think their own foot oder is disgusting.  (I wonder what they think about their bodies in general?)

2. Do you drink shower water as it falls?

a) Yes, it's the same water that comes from the sink.
b) No, that's gross.
c) Only before I realize what I'm doing.
d) I might, but I hate warm water.

I'm torn between "b" and "d", leaning a bit more towards "d", which was the most popular answer, getting 32% of responses.  Oddly enough, "a" was the next most popular answer, at 29%, which means more people drink shower water than I thought.  Option "c" came next, at 22%, while only 17% of respondents think shower water is gross.  (Yet they won't smell their feet!)

Spenglish of the day:

Me gusta mucho el arte contemporáneo.

¡Yo no!  Tengo un gusto más clásico y conservador.

Sí claro.  ¡Lo que desea es mirar fotos de mujeres desnudas!


Friday, March 18, 2016

2016/Mar/18 - SUPER Tired!

I know it's probably "too much information", but Old Grump woke up a 4:00 am feeling .... uh, "frisky", so he and Sweetie did not get a good night's sleep, again.  Groan ......

Breakfast was a yummy combination of oatmeal, yogurt, and chia seeds.

Yummy Breakfast

Unlike the "old folks", Kuya was in a great mood this morning!

Hi Kuya!

Sweetie made popsicles from raspberries, blueberries, and yogurt.  Not only are they delicious, they're good for you!

Dinner was pizza from Papa John's.  We had accumulated enough "pizza points" to get a free pizza, which was very nice.


Thursday, March 17, 2016

2016/Mar/17 - Green, Green, and More Green!

Happy St. Patty's Day!

Did you wear green today?

Here in central Georgia it was more yellow-green than green today, as our horny pine trees released burst after burst after burst of pollen.  As it hasn't rained in quite a few days, the yellow-green dust is beginning to accumulate, getting all over cars, sidewalks, and slow moving people.

Grump had to go to another day at work, but since he is leaving that cruddy place soon it didn't bother him.

Kuya got a haircut:

WonderPoll of the day:  What is your favorite kind of flower?  "Rose", "Tulip", "Daisy", or "Sunflower"?

Well they don't list my favorite flower, which is the daffodil.  Did you know that, according to , "There is literally no difference between the Daffodils and Narcissus. The two words are synonymous. "

Anyway, back to the WonderPoll....

"Rose" is the most popular flower, chosen by 57% of respondents.  "Sunflower" was next with 21%, followed by "tulip", (Sweetie's favorite flower), with 12%.  The flower I would have chosen from this list, "daisy", was only picked by 10% of respondents.

Spenglish of the day:

¡Todo el mundo está desgastando verde hoy!

¿Y qué?  ¡Gracias a nuestros pinos calientes, hay polvo de color amarillo-verde en todas partes!

Peace y'all!

2016/Mar/16 - Tiredness

After the adrenaline rush of Grump quitting his job yesterday, he and Sweetie didn't sleep too well, so they were tired today.  Something or other significant probably happened, but darned if I can remember what.

Oh yeah .... they enrolled Kuya in a homeschooling program given by A Beka Academy, ( ).  We're VERY excited for Kuya, and hope that this will be a great form of education for him.  It's Christian based, and although Grump is not a Christian, he agreed to put Kuya in it because he believes that a strong ethical foundation is crucial to survive in our society.

We'll let you know how it works out.

WonderPoll of the day:  You have three options for toilet paper: duct tape, sand paper, or your hand.  Which do you choose?

UGH!!  Some of these are really, really gross!

Anyway, I would use my hand, assuming there is someplace nearby where I can quickly wash it off.  But only 29% of respondents agreed with me.  Most folks, (58%), would use the duct tape, while 13% are apparently masochists and would use the sandpaper to scrape away.


2016/Mar/15 - Interesting

Today was an interesting day.

First of all, after fussing at poor Sweetie last week for dropping her cellphone in the toilet, Old Grump spilled his drink all over Mr. AZ's cellphone while having lunch at work.  Phooey!  Fortunately Mr. AZ's cellphone seems no worse for the unintended bath, but still ..... Grump needs to be more careful.

The other exciting news is that Grump quit his stinking' job!

Now don't panic; he does have another one lined up.  But he will be taking a pay cut, and having a much worse commute.  However, this is much better than staying where he was and putting up with the abuse.

Dinner was a yummy dish of bitter melon, scrambled egg, and rice.  Bitter melon does live up to its name, but it's supposed to be really, really good for you.

Dessert (suitable for the desert?)

After dinner we went to the mall, where we managed NOT to buy anything other than a soft pretzel for Kuya.

Hi Dodong

Dodong and the mannequin

As the "art photo" of his feet can attest, Kuya is becoming very interested in photography.

Kuya's Feet


WonderPoll of the day:  How often do you skip school or work?

a) Once a week or more  -  6% of y'all are gonna flunk or be fired

b) Once a month or more  -  13% of y'all better get your act together

c) A few times a year  -  I fit into this category, along with 39% of respondents

d) Never  -  42% of respondents are super-conscientious, and chose this