Friday, August 31, 2018

I'm Over The Hill - Outdated

It's terrible when you find out you are old hat, sliding downhill, over the hill, past your prime, outdated and in need of upgrading.  I suppose we all get there, but I certainly don't FEEL like I need any upgrades.  Maybe a little nip and tuck here and there might be nice.

Not for me of course, but for my electronics.  Here's the thing ... my watch died, right?  The suggestion is to update it by hooking up to my computer and going to their website.  When I did, it informed me my Operating System won't support the new watch upgrade.  I need to update the OS first.

Then I got a message to update my iPhone.  Okay ... I can do that ... except it also said my Operating System was too old to complete the task.  Oh come on ... it's only TWO years old?  How can that be ancient enough not to work?

So no watch and a phone with intermittent problems unless I upgrade the computer.  But here's the thing ... Photoshop, my photography catalog program, will not run if I upgrade my computer.  It's pretty much everything to me, so upgrading has not been a possibility.

Oh I could join the CLOUD and pay $10 a month for photoshop, but I just don't like having all my "stuff" out there somewhere where it might get stolen or copied.  That will cost $120 a year forever.

So I'm in a catch 22 ... no upgrade on the computer means no watch and eventually no phone.  I'm sure the Apple people here is Tucson don't want to see me again after the fiasco with my computer last year, so I'll wait until I get back to California.  Plus, I left all my backup gear at my other home.  In the meantime, I hope nothing dies permanently.

Here are those cutie pie baby birds we spotted on the fire sprinkler system in Patagonia.
Is this just the cutest little face ever?  They were cheep cheep cheeping the entire time.  What caught our eye was the bright yellow mouths gaping wide open.
Like this!!  What a nest full!  There are actually four baby birds in this mud nest, all screaming for dinner as mom and probably dad too, flew back and forth trying to keep up.
I don't know what was on the menu, but it must have been good!!  I'm guessing they are starlings ... but really I have no idea.  I can tell you they are fast as lightning however.
Mom made sure to go down the row and feed every single one of them.
Which brings me to the babies in my own back yard.  Remember the pictures of mom dove sitting on the nest?  I found a broken shell under the tree and figured something got the babies, but mom was still sitting there.  

One day I looked out and she was sitting on the ground looking up.  What should I find but two almost grown baby doves in the nest.  All this time they had been there, growing like weeds, hidden underneath mom's feathers.  I can't believe they grew up that fast ... because the next morning, they had all flown the coop.  The nest is now empty.  Lucky I got this picture when I did.
With the weather finally beginning to cool off ... we are down to the mid 90's ... I took off on a road trip yesterday to explore the cattle ranching roots of Arizona.  What an interesting story that I'll relate over the next couple of days.

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Patagonia ... Not Just Clothes

I've got lots of Patagonia wear ... jackets, running gear ... so when Patty said lets go to Patagonia, I quickly ran through my brain what articles of clothing I still needed to acquire.  Unfortunately, Patagonia doesn't live in Patagonia.

It definitely was a beautiful drive with the Arizona desert green from all the rain.  The first sight was this very cool cutout statue against the horizon.  You might not know just how realistic looking this statue is, but I can tell you it is exactly what you would see when a cowboy drives cattle ... from the horse's low head, reins dangling, to the horseman's hands, to the calf falling behind mom.
This is actually in Sonoita, on the way to Patagonia.  If you look up Sonoita on the internet, it says it's a town.  That's about it.  

A few more miles down the road and you come to Patagonia.  Originally, the Papago Indians lived here under constant threat of Apache attacks, mostly for food.  Eventually this led to the military presence to keep order.  

Unfortunately, Civil War broke out in 1861 and the troops were sent back East.  The Apaches continued their depredation, killing several local miners.  In 1865 the war was over and the troops came back to set up Camp Crittenden.
In 1891, Civil War Veteran RR Richardson developed an area of his ranch near the railroad, which became Patagonia. This was a supply center for the mining camps in the area.  Trains came in from Tombstone and went all the way to Sierra Vista and Mexico for supplies.

By 1900 Patagonia's claim to fame was running water and three hotels.  This is the Commercial Hotel.
All this history made us hungry, so we stopped in at the Stage Stop Inn for some lunch.
This quiet little hotel has a great restaurant and a pool in case you are interested in staying.  Mr. Chance had an amazing looking cheeseburger while Patty and I split a turkey wrap. 
Their onion rings are WONDERFUL.  Have two orders!!  We actually ate most of the onion rings before I took a picture!!
By the 1920's, the stock market crash was quickly followed by a Sonoita Creek washout with the railroad abandoning the tracks heading to Sierra Vista and Mexico.  In the late 30's, big mines came in sending copper and zinc to allied forces in World War II.  Otherwise, the little town might not exist any more.

We wandered through the lobby of the Stage Stop Inn to find some unique furniture and flooring.
There were many chairs made from cattle horns and hides.  The interesting part however is the floor.  They have tiles imprinted with local cattle brands.  That's something I've never seen before.
Across the street is the old railroad station, moved here from the OTHER side of the street in order to save it from destruction.
It is now Patagonia's municipal court.  See the old wig-wag on the far right?  It's one of only a few in existence, so they refurbished it and installed it here.  There are lots of stories if you go inside, but you can also find stories outside.
Not sure how we ended up talking to this guy .... I was taking baby bird pictures (to be seen later) when the conversation began.  Apparently he is walking the Arizona Trail from Mexico to somewhere in Northern Arizona.  

He looked rather beat up and hot.  I'm not sure walking this trail in the summer is the thing to do, but anyway, he began to tell us the tale of the HUGE mountain lion that jumped over his shoulder not far from here.  He is either lucky to be alive or a real good story teller!!
There's much more to see in Patagonia, as it has become sort of an arts and crafts town with quirky people, which is how they like it.  On the way back through Sonoita, we discovered this new enterprise.  I'm not sure it will survive, but the newly built Copper Brothel Brewery (yes you read that right) just opened for business.  It will probably be hopping in the wintertime.  Ladies, you may want to accompany your husbands to this one.
When people saw my camera, they asked if I was here bird watching.  Uh no ... I hadn't actually seen any birds until outside the restaurant.  There above us were several starling nests ... least I'm guessing that what they were ... attached to the fire sprinkler valves.  I took dozens of images I'll show you tomorrow.  Cute little buggers!!  

Lastly, I'm happy to say Cooper and Jessie are up and running again.  Now to find something in a can they will eat without bad consequences.  I'm terrible at cooking for myself ... if I have to cook for them, I'm sure my cemetery will exceed it's boundaries.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Strike While The Iron Is Hot

The mornings have been wonderful.  Cool and breezy ... perfect for lawn mowing.  I'm not really sure how my neighbors feel about that, but I wanted to strike while the iron was hot ... or cold actually.  I was done by 6:30.  I spent the next 30 minutes chopping and hacking bushes that are choking out my cactus.

Following that was another 30 minutes of repairing the drip lines I chopped by accident, shooting a stream of water directly into my face because they were ON.  Drip lines should be on the ground ... not hanging throughout the bushes!!  Then I ran drip to my three yucca plants that are looking pretty sad.  I'm not sure they are going to make it.  By 7:30 I was done.
Time to finish up all those lightning images.  Only this time I didn't get many.  What I DID get are pretty amazing, if you ask me.  I never knew lighting could strike like this.
Unfortunately, this storm was too far away and around the corner to get lots of images.  These are the only two out of twenty pictures worth showing.  I love the purple colors ... that's a first also.  Just mother nature doing her thing!
I'm happy to report Mr. Cooper is on the mend.  The rice/potato/chicken mixture worked it's magic.  Thank you readers for the suggestions to make life easier if I have to keep this up.  Hopefully I'll find something in a can that his discerning persnickety palate will enjoy.  

I did use a rotisserie chicken that I found at Safeway for the same price as the raw ones.  ???   He chomped down the mixture in a flash, making sure Miss Jessie didn't get any.  I figured to strike while the iron was hot also.  Since I was already cooking, I might as well cook something for me!!  

S'mores rice crispy treats!  Just stir in honey graham cereal, chocolate chips and mini marshmallows to the normal recipe.  That didn't work out so well because even though they were last, the chocolate chips half melted.  Still, they tasted WONDERFUL ... and just like s'mores.  

They tasted a little too good and I ate three of them.  They reminded me at midnight that I had done a dumb thing as my stomach felt like I was wringing out a washcloth.  Okay ... okay ... I got the message.  Maybe I should have had some of Cooper's dinner instead.
I would love to relay my last story of the day, but I can't read my writing.  Something about gants deanrdbks.  Oh Wait!!!  I just got it!!  The Giants and Diamondbacks baseball games!!  

The Diamondbacks are in first place in the league.  We aren't in last, but we have had too many injuries this year and have been playing terribly.  Amazingly, the Giants have been striking while the iron is hot .... they have WON their first two games against the Diamondbacks with one more to go.

It was a hard decision to pick between the two teams, but I have to cheer for the Giants since they are so far behind in the championship race.  

The last bit of sad news ... another burial is imminent.  Alas, my Garmin watch has died twice more.  The internet says to update it with my computer, which brings up another recent problem.  I'm outdated.  They say I've been outdated for two years now, but we all know it's more like five years.  We'll discuss it later on.  

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

The Hospital Diet ... BLAND!!

So much for saving the best watch I ever purchased.  This Garmin GPS watch has saved the bell many a time.  Once you hit the start button, it creates a map of where you are going, so if you get lost, it can get you back home.  Pretty handy when in the mountains.

The lettering was plenty big enough to read even without my glasses.  Alas, I think it is on it's last leg.  It went blank again, even though it had a 70% charge.  I hate that things become obsolete so fast.  To replace it will cost around $450.  I can buy a lot of watches for that.

And so I guess I'll say goodbye to this magical piece of electronics that beeped me through the Nike Marathon five times, the San Francisco marathon three times and the California International Marathon once in 32 degree weather.  I'm so very sad to see you go.  I guess we all become outdated at some point.
I held a little memorial service on the patio, watching the clouds float by.  Wait!!!  Ding ding ding!  Maybe ... just maybe it needs to be updated on my computer.  More than likely, it's the battery that's gone kaput, but who knows.  I think I'll do a little more investigation before I bury my best friend.
It was rather a nice morning, but I had to make a call to my Vet in California and attend a sewing klatch at my neighbor's house.  
It's so cool how in just minutes, those puffy white clouds can turn into this!!
So here are the results of the call.  Cooper just seems to have a sensitive stomach and a taste for the finer things in life, like filet mignon.  He completely refused his food for the entire day, not to mention requiring a trip outside every hour.  Poor baby!!

I finally broke down and gave him some of Jessie's food, which he loves.  The Vet said that's like giving your kid with a stomach ache an In N Out burger.  It only makes it worse.  I was sufficiently chastised.

I was hoping for the easy route ... a prescription for the low fat dog food he's had previously, but try as I might, I couldn't talk the Vet into it.  He said what Cooper needed was rice, just a little chicken, and maybe plain macaroni or potato ... BLAND things.  Like a hospital diet.

Seriously?  I don't even cook for myself, and you want me to cook for my dog?  The answer was YES!!  So just to show you how much I love my puppy, I went to the store.  I bought potatoes to nuke in the microwave, cooked chicken (which he LOVES and because it was the same price as a whole raw one), rice and pumpkin.  

Yes .... pumpkin is supposed to soothe a bad stomach.  I won't tell you what Cooper said about the pumpkin, other than OH HELL NO!!  Some day I'll make pumpkin bread I guess.

I cooked the rice, chopped up the chicken and the potato and added in just a tad of chicken juice, having defatted it in the fridge.  Geez ... I don't even do that for ME!!  Then I heated it up just a little.

He ate every single bite!!  GOOD!!   No ... that's BAD!  That means I have to cook for a picky eater puppy!!  BUT ..... we only had to go outside ONCE last night.  Hopefully that means he's on the mend.

You will soon see me in the dog food aisles looking for a suitable replacement for rice, potatoes and chicken.  I really don't see me doing this cooking for long.  There must be SOMETHING out there he will eat that won't upset his stomach.  I guess he's just getting old like me.  Lots of things upset my stomach nowadays too!!

I really have been working on those lightning pictures and hope to have them soon ... like tomorrow!!  The sewing group was a kick in the pants, as always, as we chowed down on Chef Patty's Asian Chicken Salad.  Maybe I can talk her into making a rice, chicken and potato casserole!!

Monday, August 27, 2018

Full Moon Madness

It was a full moon last night.  Know how I can tell?  The puppies got me up at 11:00, 1:36, 2:44 and 3:32.  Both my kids are sick again.  Honestly, I don't know what's going on, but Cooper has been throwing up right alongside Jessie.  Same food as always and I constantly watch them outside, so I don't know what's up.  Two rolls of paper towels later, I'm exhausted.
The second indication was when I tried to eat this beef stew for lunch.  These things are awful, but keep my portion size under control.  I was spared this time however.  I removed the metal lid and replaced it with the plastic one.  

50% power for one minute it said.  As I walked away I heard a huge BANG!!!  Heavens to Betsy!!  What happened??  Figuring my microwave just blew up, I ducked down and reached for the door.  

The entire inside was covered with beef stew, having exploded with epic consequences.  Hmmm, it looked just like Cooper getting ......... oh well.  Saved by the microwave.  After spending an hour cleaning up the mess, I opted for taquitos.
Between taking the puppies outside and cleaning up all the messes inside, I finished this quilt top.  It's so big, I think it will become next year's donation to the Foster Kids for College program.  The local guild, which I'm not a member of, donates quilts to the kids just entering college on their own.  This one will be perfect.
On one of my forays outside with the puppies, I almost stepped on this dude.  It seems in one day my  hummingbird feeder found itself empty.  As I was going down the steps, I was looking up at bats flying around like crazy.  Do you think they could be sipping the nectar??  That was four cups in one day.

Thank goodness I looked down or I would have stepped BAREFOOT on this guy.  YIKES!!!  Only about an inch long, I've no idea if he bites or not.  Good thing there was a full moon and I could see him!!
Although I've had plans, I've been sticking close to home with the sick puppies.  That means lots of television and sewing.  I'm getting cabin fever like never before, which doesn't bode well for my checkbook.  

Today I'll contact my Vet and try to get a prescription for some dog food that won't upset their tummies.  Cooper is to the point he won't even eat the canned food.

There were a few spits here and there, but mostly just big puffy clouds passed overhead.  That always makes for amazing sunsets!!  Believe it or not, the nights are down to a lovely 65 degrees.
Hopefully the full moon passes by with no more ill effects.  This morning the sewing group meets again with Chef Patty providing lunch.  I'll be running back and forth to check on the puppies.  Patty says this too shall pass ... I just hope it passes as quickly as the full moon!!

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Confrontation With Thousand Trails Membership

If you've been RV'ing for awhile, campground memberships are the way to go.  Yes, some people dry camp and are able to stay off the grid for years.  I'm not one of them.  I have a household refrigerator that requires lots of juice and no solar equipment to make it.

As time went on, it became rather expensive to stay in RV parks, so I joined Escapees and Passport America for discounts.  When Thousand Trails came out with their Zone Pass in the Northwest area at a price I couldn't refuse ... get two for the price of one, which was $450 ... I jumped on it.

As time went on, I discovered the Elite package.  Up to 21 days at any one park at ZERO charge for the same price as the Zone Pass and I can go from park to park.  That means I can live at a Thousand Trails park for 365 days a year for my $450 fees.  I cancelled the zone pass ... I even have a paper from Thousand Trails saying the contract is null and void.
Then I purchased the Elite package for $5,000.  Now they go for around $7,000 and up.  At year three, they decided I should pay an assessment fee of $65 for campground repair.  I declined.  They said I had no choice, it was in my contract, only they couldn't seem to find it.

I've fought with them ever since.  It's a thorn in my side.  Not a lot of money, just a tricky way to get more money out of me since I have such a sweet contract.  This year my bill jumped up to $533, so I called to find out why.

It seems I got the same membership lady I previously spoke to.  I think she's the only one in the entire office.  I explained I was not required to pay the fees.  She put me on hold for 20 minutes to "find my account".  

When she came back, she said they took $65 out of the $450 membership fees I paid, making me short ... and late ... on my dues.  Add in a late fee and interest and it came to $589.   I tried to make the numbers add up, but they didn't.  Wait ... the website says I owe $530.  

She tried to explain that $35.86 was for assessment fees ... but wait again.  They were $65!  Absolutely nothing she told me matched up with the website.  This is crazy, and besides, my contract does NOT say I have to pay assessments.

She put me on hold again to find exactly where in my contract it said I had to pay those fees.  FORTY MINUTES LATER, she came back on.  I'm sure she thought I would hang up, but I fooled her.  I just put her on speaker phone and watched the baseball game.  

She actually admitted upon her return that she couldn't find it anywhere, but she was SURE I had to pay.  I asked to speak to her Supervisor or someone at Corporate Headquarters.  Her answer in a loud nasty tone was ABSOLUTELY NOT!!  Really ... you don't have a supervisor?  She finally relented and I was transferred to an answering machine ... who never called me back.

Two days later, I received a call that I would normally never answer.  This time I did, and amazingly, it was someone from Thousand Trails ... or so she said.  I was late on my payment and I needed to pay it NOW!  I explained the whole thing again, asking if she was from Corporate or from the accounting agency that handles their billing.  

She got very angry, saying she worked for Equity Lifestyle Properties and I needed to PAY UP!!  I declined.  My dues are not DUE until October 1.  Send me a copy of my contract highlighting the part that says I have to pay assessments.  In fact, send me TEN copies so I can pass them out to my lawyers and let them have a look see.

Well of course that didn't go over very well.  After another screaming match, I finally hung up on her.  You see, I paid my dues four days prior, a fact she wasn't aware of because it apparently takes two weeks for it to hit my account.  

I blocked her phone number so I don't have to listen to her scream at me any more.  I'm sure in the end I'll have to pay the rotten lousy $65 ... only $25 this year.  It's just the principle of the thing.  It's not in my contract, so why should I pay it?  Yes, the membership is still worth every penny because I stayed there so much the first three years, it paid for itself.  I'm on their dime now.  

I can camp there for 13 days a year at an average of $35 a night (that's my $450 dues), then spend the other 352 days for free.  Which is exactly what is happening with all their annual sites.  People can live there for the price of their dues plus maybe another $2,500, making their living costs about $8 a day. 

That's why us members can hardly find a place to park any more.  Between the druggies and the locals, they take up much of the park that was originally meant for members only.  Not only that, but Passport America members can now stay there at a discount, not to mention the public who can call up and reserve spaces.  They say for only one time, but that doesn't seem to be the case.

I know, it's all about the mighty dollar.  If they used their proceeds to repair the parks, I might not care.  Shoddy management has allowed most of the parks to go downhill to the extent that many of the electrical hookups aren't even working.  Several have even had to shut off their water.  Don't even get me started on the "no enforcement of the rules" problem.  It seems corporate only cares about the money coming in, not how the parks are run.

Still, the parks are on my beloved Northwest Coast where I can fly my kites.  I think one more year and I will give away my membership for free, they pay the $700 cost to transfer it over.  Ridiculous, I know.  Geez it only cost $150 to transfer my Giants Baseball contract.  I just don't want any more confrontations from angry Thousand Trails employees.

Saturday, August 25, 2018

DON'T Go Outside!!

In spite of staying up late last night and playing the ball game with Cooper in an attempt to get him to sleep in ..... he didn't.  I figured to catch a snap in the afternoon, but that didn't happen either.

Up bright and early, Miss Patty and I trucked on off to downtown Tucson.  First stop ... the Jeep Store for windshield wipers.  I only went to the Jeep dealer because I loved the look of the ones I had, but they didn't seem to have anything similar.

With all the rainstorms, I really needed wipers.  The nice kid not only put them on, but showed me how.  I already knew since Mr. Chance had helped me the day before, but it was nice of the guy to help.  Besides, he was rather cute!!

Five stops later, we made it to the Adobe House Antique store.  At least I never have to go back now because it's prices were through the roof.  A few more stops and we landed back home, just in time for a rain storm.  I never even got to use the wipers.

Although it was a rather cool day in Tucson, 80 degrees I think, storm clouds came over the horizon about 5:00.  I seem to be drawn to the lightning like a moth to a flame.  I can't stand not trying to capture it.
These were all taken with my iPhone.  You know, the one who recently stated I have been using too many gigabytes of cell data?  I have an unlimited plan so they can't stop me, but they CAN and DID start charging me another $5 a month.  Stinkers!!!
The clouds got pretty black across the wash as lightning flashed every few seconds and rain fell in torrents.
There would be flashes clear up in the clouds, then a big strike to the ground.
Even this far away, they were almost blinding.  You know those scary movies where you say "don't go outside!!!" or "don't go in the cellar, you dummy!!" but they do anyway?  Well don't go outside in a lightning storm ..... but I did anyway.  
As darkness began to fall, my iPhone began picking up the pink flashes reflected in the rain.  Not your normal lightning strike, this one looked like four at once.
Cool stuff ...... I sat and watched as long as I could before heading inside to find Miss Jessie an unhappy camper.  The thunder was barely audible, but that would soon change.
Another storm right on the heels of this one brought out my big guns camera.  I know I probably shouldn't go outside with a tripod, but just like the dumb blond who went down in the basement, I went outside and set up.  

One really pretty aspect of all this rain is my newly planted bush blooming like crazy.  The three little yucca I planted are still alive too, so I have hope they will survive.
In the midst of all that, I noticed my watch had died.  It's what I time my exposures with, so panic mode set in.  It's a huge GPS watch for running that I've worn for many years.  I just replaced the ugly red band with a black beauty and now it's going to die?
Surprise!!!  After finding hard reset instructions on the internet, I'm happy to report it's up and running ... hopefully for another ten years!!

I'll process those lightning images today, but don't expect much.  The storm had passed before I got set up.  The final result?  It's downright cold at 68 degrees this morning.  It's going to hurt when it actually DOES get down in to the 30's this winter!!

Friday, August 24, 2018

A Storm Like No Other

Here I thought the worst of the storms were over and we were headed into autumn.  Close, but no cigar for Nancy.  Although the forecast had been for sunny and warm, Mother Nature had other ideas as a storm warning came across my phone.

I looked outside but it was sunny and beautiful.  That's when I heard the CRACK of lightning at my back.  We were being attacked from the South.  In less than five minutes the wind picked up to hurricane proportions, whipping the trees around like me shaking spider webs off my feather duster.

When the rain began, I felt rather smug as it was across the little valley.  I should have known better.  In another minute it was raining horizontally with the biggest drops of water ever!  
It completely obliterated the mountains and trees.  I know I keep saying this, but I've never seen anything like it.  It's a good thing I wasn't in town because my windshield wipers are trashed, with the rubber mostly gone.  Twenty minutes later, the sun was back out.  The nice part is that it cools things off.
I checked the front to find my walkway flooded, but it didn't last long.  In spite of the concrete like dirt around here, it absorbed completely within 30 minutes.  All this water certainly is making my plants happy!!
As I pondered my latest fabric purchase, a nice variety of Australian prints, another storm came crashing through.  I was hoping it didn't continue, as the Chance Family had invited me to an ice cream fundraiser at granddaughter Laila's school.  
I was't about to miss out on THAT!!  We stopped on the way at Native Wings for dinner.  My chicken parmesan sandwich was pretty tasty.  When I heard they had curly fries, it sealed the deal.  LOVE them!!  I only ate half however ... there was ice cream on the horizon.
That's when we found out it wasn't at the school, but at Baskin Robbins, which has a store just a few miles away.  Ho ho ho ... I'm all over it!!  We donated $5 for a raffle, then went inside and ordered.  BR donated I think 20% of all sales between 5 & 9 to the school.  My favorite Rocky Road was delicious!!  It was a small cup, but the lady filled it to the brim!  That pretty much made up for the spider/scorpion killing in the morning.
The rain storm made for a beautiful sunset as I sat on the patio with the puppies, shovel at hand.   I've been tippy toeing around my house ever since my morning encounter.  I'm now in automatic scanning mode every second.  I do have a pest service and I filled up every hole I could find.  Honesty, I don't know what else I can do.  It's just too hot to wear my cowboy boots.

Wintertime will be much better as they all go back to hibernation ... or at least I HOPE that's what happens.  I'm not going to let them chase me out!  The Arizona sunsets are just too pretty not to see in person.

Thursday, August 23, 2018

I Have No Words .......

Bet you thought you'd never hear THAT!!  Actually I had plenty of words to say when I got up at 4:00 and let the puppies out before wandering into the bathroom.  Wasn't I shocked when I looked in the mirror and saw THIS directly behind me.  I ran screaming into the bedroom.  I'm pretty sure my heart rate jumped up to 200 and my blood pressure went through the roof.

It sure woke me up in a hurry.  Really, when is this going to stop?  How are they getting in?  Afraid he would jump at me .... some of them do, you know .... I grabbed my five foot long swiffer cleaner and smashed him from a distance.  Of course that left a nice mess on the wall I had to clean up.
I tried to remain calm as I got on my hands and knees, scurrying around the entire perimeter of the house to see if I could find any holes they could crawl through.  I found nothing.  Not even under the doors.  I did buy a large bottle of turmeric and spread it around outside every door, hoping that would help.  My only thought was maybe they are coming down the fireplace chimney.  Please, I just want it to stop.

Once I regained my composure, I went to work on minor repairs around the house.  Having removed the broken bulbs from the ceiling fan, I purchased four more.  Weird though, they just didn't want to screw in easily like a light bulb should.  I sprayed them with a tad bit of WD40 and VOILA!  They went right in.  I hit the switch.

Maybe I used a tad bit too much WD40.  One bulb didn't work.  I screwed it in and out three times, checking with the switch each time.  Nothing.  Finally I thought to switch BULBS.  Sure enough, the brand new one had burned out instantly when I hit the switch the first time.
Next I went outside to replace these two bulbs with the LED kind.  No use running up a bigger bill, even if it IS cheaper here.  That's when I realized the bulbs I bought were of the indoor variety.  Well rats .. another trip to the store.
While I was up there on the ladder, the cable cord that was hanging down along a 20 foot distance needed to be tacked back up.  I had a box of clips ... it was just a matter of squishing in between the bushes with the ladder so I could reach.

Unfortunately for me, it takes a hammer to install the clips over the wires.   It was hard to hold the wire tight with clip attached while hammering UP with one hand.  The first one went in fine.  The second one went in with my thumb attached.  Gosh that hurt!!!  You can barely see the wire under the eave.  Not as tight as I would like, but it's MUCH better than it was.
The last project before the heat got me ... a new hummingbird feeder.  The last one just wouldn't stay full overnight.  This new variety was much larger and had a fully threaded neck, unlike the last one.  It also had an S-curved hook for hanging.

Once I got it home and went to fill it up, I couldn't find the top.  The girl at the store had taken it off to show me the hook ... didn't she put it back on?  Surely it's not a "senior moment" ... I don't remember taking the top off!!  

I checked the car ... the house ... the back porch ... everywhere I had been.  Nothing!!  Well rats ... I grabbed my purse to head back to the store and what should I find inside?  The top!!  Oh good grief.  Back to the kitchen to attach the hook and fill it up.  Clumsy me ... I dropped the hook and of course it went right down the garbage disposal.

Every stick your hand all the way inside one?  I'm always afraid it will magically start up.  I felt nothing ... but I KNOW it went down there!!  With flashlight in hand, I finally spotted it.  I gingerly reached inside to fetch it, and then .... over the counter this time ...  got it all put together.  The hummers are happy as can be.  Now at least THREE can eat at once.
By then I was nice and relaxed after the spider incident.  I was playing on the floor with Cooper when he rolled his ball under the chair.  I had to remove my kite bag in order to reach the ball.  That's when I found THIS!!!  I instantly jumped back six feet, feeling like my head was going to explode!!  I could feel my heart beating in my throat!!!

Up until now I had not found any scorpions INSIDE the house.  Why me Lord ... WHY ME????  Hoping he wouldn't scurry away while I found something to kill him with, I walked backwards to the closet.  I should have reached for the shovel ... but instead got the fly swatter.  

I know they are hard to kill ... I should have gone for something heavier.  I whacked him with all my might.  OMG!!!!  He fell to the carpeted floor and totally disappeared!!  He blended right in and I panicked!!  He's going to get away!!!!!!!!!!!  

I made a mad dash for the kitchen to get a flashlight and luckily ... thank you Lord ... found him dead on the floor.  I hit him six more times, just for good measure, then slid him on to the swatter and dumped him in the trash.  Take THAT!!!!  Only about an inch long here, by the time I squished him, he was about two inches .... a small one.  
All in all, a terrible morning.  I tried to sit and meditate the blood pressure away, but it wasn't happening.  I'm getting out the can of spray this morning and going all around the inside of the house.  It probably won't kill them, but maybe the smell will deter them a little.  

I whipped out a huge frozen container of bacon mac n cheese.  Maybe if I have a nice fat-filled comfort meal for lunch, I'll feel better!!  The day did get better, but I'll wait until tomorrow to relay those details.  In the meantime, I'm scanning the floor and furniture CONSTANTLY!!