Wednesday, April 30, 2014

My Trip To Los Angeles On The Train

Was having the strangest dream when I woke up this morning. Actually I woke up around 2:30 am from the dream. I felt really strange when I woke up. I was dreaming that Ben was alive, but he was younger, like in his 30's or 40's. Also what was strange, he and I were no longer married, but we were like best friends who had been married. I found out he was going to marry another woman. Ben wanted me to be a witness at the wedding and I was very upset about that because I felt he should not be marrying this woman. I remember seeing Ben's mom and dad at the wedding. Ben's dad passed many years ago and his mom passed a few years before Ben did. I don't recall seeing Ben's brother there, but his sister was there and she was really mad a Ben for asking me to be at the wedding because she knew it was upsetting me. I remember she was about to rip into Ben about marrying this other woman and that's when I woke up. So anyway, got up at 6 am and we went for a quick dog walk with Jean and her dogs, then at 9:15 am, Jean and I headed over to the train station for our trip down to Los Angeles. Now let me remind you...I have never ridden on any trains other than the kind you ride at an amusement park. I thought the train ride both going and coming back home was really fun except for that the trains always seem to travel through the worst parts of towns. We got to Union Station around 11 am and then tried to find our way out of the huge station to the street where I would have to walk to the Federal Court House if I do have to report for jury duty. It was only about 3 blocks away and very easy to find once we found our way out of the station. The bad part is we had to walk past all of the homeless people and some of them would be yelling and cussing. So we walked by the court house and then by the city hall, then went to look for somewhere to have lunch. We walked passed Olvera Street (El Pueblo de Los Angeles) which was the actual birth place of Los Angeles and down to Philippe's. Philippe's is world famous for their French Dip sandwiches. After lunch, we walked back through Olvera Street and walked through the Avila Adobe, the oldest home in Los Angeles. We then crossed the street and explored more of the train station and then got on the train to head home. Got home just a little after 3 pm. I wouldn't mind riding it down there again for lunch, but I'm not looking forward the possibility of being on the jury.

Me and my neighbor Jean in downtown Los Angeles

Me on the train leaving the station to head for home

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Day Of Rest

I have been “on the go” for the past 7 days...starting with my support group last week, then spending the day with some friends on Wednesday, then going to Descanso Gardens on Thursday with the group ladies. Friday I did a load of laundry and did my grocery shopping. My brother Keith arrived Friday evening and he and I were out running around most of the weekend, and yesterday my friends came to my house to have me work with them on their laptop and we went out to lunch. I was so pooped this morning from all of that activity that I decided not to go to support group today. I just needed a day to rest and spend time with Hiker. That's another thing, Hiker got neglected all of that time that I was busy and I feel bad about that. Tomorrow my friend Jean and I are taking the Metrolink Train down to Los Angeles so I can have a “dry run” in case I have to report there for jury duty in July, so once again I'll be out and about and neglecting Hiker. I did have to wash some sheets this morning from when Keith was here, but the washer and drying do all of the work, so that wasn't too bad. Hiker is so funny. She knows that now and then I toss some of her fluffy toys into the wash to clean them and she knows that they come out of the dryer. I didn't wash any of them today, but that didn't stop her from looking for them. She first kept sticking her nose into the dryer as I was emptying it and then she kept sniffing all of the sheets and towels on the bed as I was folding them to put them away. Nutty dog. Was warm and windy here all day in Santa Clarita. Other than doing the quick load of laundry, I was true to my word about resting all day. I only went outside a couple of times into the back yard and also up to get the mail. The bad thing is I ordered 3 items on Amazon which I would not have done if I had not been home all day. I sure do like my new iPhone 5C that I got Saturday at the Verizon store. It is really fast. We were one of the last areas to receive 4G and I cannot believe how much faster it is than my old iPhone 4 with the 3G. Got up to 90° here today.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Another Busy Day

Been busy all day giving my friend Wally some computer lessons and helping him with his photos on his computer and adding and deleting programs, etc. that he didn't need. Poor Hiker. For the past 3 days she has more or less been on her own because Keith was here over the weekend and he and I were gone a lot of time both days and then I was gone and busy here all day today, and tomorrow I'm going to my group and lunch so I'll be gone for 5 hours or so and Wednesday, Jean and I are taking the train down to Los Angeles for me to check things out in case I end up going to Jury duty down there in July. I woke up around 2:30 am this morning and couldn't go back to sleep for a couple of hours. Turned the TV on and that finally put me to sleep. We got up at 6 am and went for our walk with Jean and her dogs at 7 am. I had some problems with my home group on my computer, so I had to set that up again and then Karren and Wally got here around 10:45 and we started working on Wally's computer stuff. We went to lunch around 1 pm and I took my old modem back to Time Warner. Karren and Wally just now left around 5 pm, so I need to get some stuff done.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Very Busy Day

We watched the old 1959 movie “Journey To The Center Of The Earth” last night on Netflix. Had not seen that since I was a little kid. I could not go to sleep for some reason and got up to take a sleep aid around midnight. Got up at 6 am to let Hiker outside and I turned on my laptop and noticed I had not Internet connection and I'm thinking “oh great, the new router/modem is not work”. I went and reset it and then everything was OK. I'm guessing when you first connect it, it takes awhile for Time Warner to do their thing to make it run properly because it seems to be fine of today, except I know my RoadRunner email with Time Warner was receiving but not sending. Keith and I went over to the Verizon store and I upgraded my 2 year old iPhone 4 to a new iPhone 5C. I got the pretty blue one. The guy at the store put my contacts in my phone but I'm now putting all of my apps, etc. into it. Poor Hiker was left at home alone most of the day. I feel bad about leaving her. I was going to take my old modem back to Time Warner, but they are not open on Sundays, so I will have to do that tomorrow.

Saturday, April 26, 2014


Keith arrived a little after 6 pm last night. We had dinner and watched a little TV. Got up around 7:30 am. Wanted to go to Best Buy to get myself a new router/modem combination and get rid of the Time Warner modem so they won't be charging me every month to use theirs. We had to wait for my gardener to come and do his job before we could leave because I had to be here to let him into the backyard. We got the new router/modem and then headed over to Topper's Pizza for lunch. Stopped by Sam's Club on the way home and then started the task of setting it up. Had to call Time Warner to get some assistance. Hopefully we will settle down for a movie tonight and then tomorrow I want to go to the Verizon store and maybe upgrade my iPhone.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Somewhat Of A Busy Day

I woke up this morning around 2:20 am and didn't go back to sleep until around 3:30 am. Got up at 6 am to let Hiker outside and decided to go ahead and get dressed because we had a dog walk with my neighbor Jean and her dogs. After the walk, Jean headed home and Hiker and I had breakfast, then I went to do my grocery shopping. While I was at the grocery store, the sheriff was called because there were some people outside trying to get people to sign a petition and I guess things got out of hand and there was a loud, verbal confrontation. I don't know what the petition was about because I tried to get out of there quickly. Came home and put the groceries away then settled down to have lunch and watch Y&R. In the afternoon, Hiker and I drove up to Sam's Club to fill my car with gasoline. It started getting pretty windy and cloudy. We are supposed to have rain tonight and tomorrow morning. I hope it waits until late tonight because my brother Keith is out in Canoga Park doing some noise monitoring and is planning on driving up to my house when he is done to spend the weekend with me and Hiker. He should be done around 5 pm, so with the traffic, he won't get here until around 6 or 7 pm. While Keith is here, I want him to help me pick out a new modem/router at Best Buy and set it up for me. I also might go by the Verizon store and maybe upgrade my iPhone. I've had my current one for over 2 years and it doesn't hold a battery charge as well as it used too. I discovered something good today. I've been taking Crestor twice a week for the past 5 weeks. I also take two blood pressure medications. I have noticed that my blood pressure has been even lower since I've started taking the Crestor and I researched it and found out that Crestor helps lower blood pressure as well as lowering cholesterol. I just hope my cholesterol is lower when I go in for my blood work in 2 weeks. Just gave myself a hair cut so now I'll sit back and wait for Keith to get here.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

What A Fun Day I Had!

Had such a fun day today. Hiker and I got up around 7 am and I got ready to go over to the senior center and pick up some of the ladies from my support group (Linda Clark, Jane Hagar & Carol Blackstone. We then headed up the 210 Freeway to La Canada to Descanso Gardens...a huge botanical garden. DeDee Parenteau who is also a part of our group met us there. The five of us spent the morning wandering through the poppies, roses, azaleas, camellias, irises, lilacs and other native plants. There were birds of all kinds plus Koi fish, turtles, frogs, etc. I have been there several times, so I really enjoyed sharing this beautiful place with my friends. This was our first outing together, other than going to lunch after or support group on Tuesdays. I think the ladies really enjoyed the Japanese garden there. On the way home, we stopped in Montrose, CA to have lunch. We had no idea where we wanted to go, so DeDee suggested a few places. We ended up at The Star Cafe which is an Italian place and we had a good meal and a great time just talking with each other. We said so long to DeDee and headed back down the freeway to Santa Clarita where I dropped the ladies back at the senior center and then I headed home to Hiker, who was so happy to see me. She just kept jumping up at me and kissing me. I was gone a little longer than I normally am when I go out with friends, so I guess she really missed me.

Our "selfie" (Eat your heart out Ellen LOL!)

Jane Hagar, Carol Blackstone, DeDee Parenteau, Linda Clark and me up front.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Fun Day With Friends

Went to bed last night at 8 pm but didn't actually go to sleep until around 9 pm because I did a little reading before I settled down for the night. Hiker woke me up around 6 am to go potty and then she came back to bed with me and brought several of her toys so I was not able to go back to sleep. Why is it that the bed feels so much better in the morning than it does when we first go to bed at night? Finally got up a little after 7 am and made some breakfast then got dressed, did a few things around the house and then waited for my friends Karren and Wally to arrive. We went to Jimmy Dean's Grill for lunch and then came back to my house and Wally had some questions about computer stuff that I helped him with. In fact, they are coming back on Monday and bringing Wally's laptop so I can check it out for him and show him a few things on it. They left a little after 2 pm. Tomorrow I am going to Descanso Botanical Gardens with some of my lady friends from our support group. Should be fun.

My friends Wally and Karren

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Home From Support Group

Up early this morning to get things done before I went to my support group at the Senior Center. Had a full house again today. After group, five of us ladies went to lunch at Red Robin for burgers. We were also working out the details of our plans for getting together on Thursday and going to Descanso Gardens in La Canada. We are meeting at the senior center and I will drive us up to the gardens. This will be the first trip that all of us have done together. Hope it goes well so we can do more of them. Was a little overcast all day today but still in the high 70s. Tomorrow my friend Karren and Wally are coming down from Lancaster to go to lunch with me.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Sunny Monday

All weekend, all I wanted to do was sleep. I think it's from the antihistamine I was taking. I had told my retinal specialist that my eyes were dry and itchy, so he told me to get some Claritin, but I had not gotten to the store. I had some inexpensive antihistamine tablets and I took some of those and they made me drowsy. I need to buy medications that do not cause drowsiness. Saturday afternoon, I did get out for a very short walk with Hiker, but on Sunday, all we did was lay around on the sofa and watch movies and I kept dozing off. I went to bed at 8:30 pm last night and when I woke up, I was still sleepy. Went for our dog walk with Jean and her dogs and then when I got home, I forced myself to do some housework today, but at least I got it done. After lunch I took Hiker up to Canyon Country Park to take a walk. It was 85° so we just did about a mile in 20 minutes, but that's better than no walk at all.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Easter Sunday

Slept in again this morning and so groggy when I woke up at 8 am. I had taken an antihistamine before I went to bed because I was having itchy eyes. This morning I was feeling light headed. I think it's due to the changes in my vision because my blood pressure is fine and I've been drinking water, so I should not be dehydrated. Every time I get the eye injections, my eyes have to “readjust” some. Decided not to go out anywhere today since it was Easter and I'd have to drive by the Catholic church and I knew the traffic there would be worse than it is on a normal Sunday. Didn't even go to get my lottery tickets. I will go and get them tomorrow. Did my quarterly check of my earthquake kit this morning. Ran the generator for a few minutes to make sure it was working. Checked the dates on the food I have in the kit. Checked all of the flash lights and other emergency items. Had lunch and then vegged out on the sofa to watch “The Grapes Of Wrath” on Netflix. I have never seen that movie. I remember my mom telling me about the movie as she was from Oklahoma and it was about people migrating from Oklahoma to California during the depression. I just get so mad at myself for being so lazy lately.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Warm, Lazy, Saturday

Got up just after 6 am to let Hiker go outside and when she came back inside, I told her we were going back to bed since most of last week I was not able to sleep in any. My eyes were really tired from yesterday's injection. I kept falling asleep on the sofa trying to watch TV so finally went to bed around 9 pm. Fell asleep almost immediately. When we got up at 8 am, I made some waffles for breakfast, sorted all of my medications, vitamins and supplements for next week, put some laundry into the washer and did a few other things around the house. Took Hiker out for a 1 mile walk around our community in the afternoon. She didn't want to go walking today. She kept hiding in her portable crate and she nipped at me when I was trying to put her harness on her. She sometimes get lazy like I do and doesn't want to do anything but veg out. I made her go out with me but we didn't walk very long because it was much hotter outside than I thought it was going to be. Plus my calf muscles were starting to hurt. It got up to over 85° on my patio. I just hope we don't have a really hot summer like we did last year and the year before. Watched “Dying Young” starring Julia Roberts on Encore. I had never seen it and it was pretty good.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Another Eye Injection

Got up pretty early this morning. Originally Hiker and I were going to go for a dog walk with Jean before I went to my eye appointment, but that changed when I realized my iPad was missing and I went back over to the car wash where I was yesterday to see if they had found it. Luckily they did have it. I don't know if I set it down and just forgot it or if I dropped it somehow since I had so many other things I was carrying. Jean picked me up around 9:15 am to head over to Kaiser. Don't know if it's because it was Good Friday or what, but Kaiser was a circus! The parking lots were full and when we walked into the waiting room at Ophthalmology, There were only 2 seats left. Found out that someone had called in sick so everyone was doubling up on their work and patients trying to keep things running. My appointment was at 10:30 am but I didn't get my injection until about 11:45. On the way home, Jean and I stopped at Taco Bell for lunch and there were a bunch of school kinds in there. They can be so loud and sometimes rude. Hiker was glad to see me when I walked in the door. She wanted her mid-day snack. Now I have to “feel” my way around the house until my eyes get back to their normal size from being dilated. So I have one more injection next month and then photographs of the inner eye and then a follow up with the doctor. Then we will just go from there. Just laid back on the sofa and kept my eyes closed and the blinds closed after I got home to keep the glare from the sun out of them.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Nice Day For Lunch Out With A Good Friend

Didn't stay in bed long this morning because I wanted to get over to the car wash place in time to get the “early bird special” price. I was surprised that when I got there about 10 minutes after they opened that there were already about 6 or 8 people there ahead of me. Guess everyone wants to get the lower price. My friend Ed (Ben's best buddy) got her just after 10:30 am. Around 11 am we headed up to the Sizzler for lunch. I had their new “Italian grilled chicken” which tastes exactly like their “lemon herb chicken”. When Ed first got her, Hiker was not going to let him into the house. She growled and snarled. I finally got her calmed down enough to let him into the house. Hiker has met Ed several times, but she only sees him maybe once or twice a year. I also think maybe she does not like his long hair and full beard. She kept making sure that she was standing or sitting between him and me the entire time he was here. It's nice to know that she is so protective of me. She finally started playing ball with him in the back yard but she still kept a really close eye on him. He left to head home just after 1 pm to avoid the Thursday afternoon traffic. Was overcast here most of the day.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

At Home All Day

I was so tired all day yesterday. My eyes were killing me. I mentioned that ever since I've started getting the shots in my right eye, that both of my eyes are very sensitive to the bright light. I had a Facebook friend tell me that her husband gets eye injections and he has sensitivity to the bright light also. I went to bed pretty early last night and fell asleep almost immediately. Got up early this morning because the Sears repairman was coming to check out my dishwasher. My time window for him to come was between 8 am and 12 noon. The repairman called me at 12:04. He had gotten lost which a lot of people do when they come here because the Internet maps take them into our community the wrong way. Anyway, he checked the dishwasher and it worked perfectly, but made the loud noise I had called them about. He said the noise was coming from the pump, but that the pump was working perfectly. He said the pump motor was making noise because it is getting old. It would have cost me $99 for a new pump motor and $130 for the labor. I could buy a whole new dishwasher similar to the one I have for anywhere between $299 and $399 plus installation so I decided not to do anything right now. I'll just put up with the noise. I still had to pay $79.95 for the service call, but I knew that when I made the appointment. They gave me a 90 day service guarantee so that if I have to call them back within 90 days, I won't have to pay the $79.95 again. He also gave me a voucher for anywhere from $60 to $100 off of a new dishwasher. I don't use the dishwasher all that much, so I'll just wait until this one completely stops working. The guy who came out reminded me of Scott Caan who plays “Danno” on “Hawaii Five-O”. Had a late lunch and then took Hiker for a walk down along the dry riverbed. It was pretty warm outside and I was sweating pretty good when we got back. Got up to 85° on my patio. Have to get up early tomorrow and get over to the full service car wash to get my car cleaned up. They have an “early bird special” from 8 am to 10 am. My friend Ed (Ben's best buddy) is coming up from Pomona tomorrow to go to lunch with me.

Me waiting for the repair man this morning:

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Support Group and Lunch Out

Up and dressed and headed over to the Senior Center for my weekly group session. It was clear and warmer this morning. I sure was tired yesterday evening. I don't know when I got “old”. I used to be able to do some house work and go out on hikes the same day and be just fine, but now just one or the other causes me to be so tired in the evenings. At least when I get tired from house work or from hiking, I don't have any problem going to sleep. Had a small group in our support session today. My eyes were bothering me a lot today, so I was pretty quiet. Seems that the bright lights bother me more now than they did before. After group, DeDee and I went over to Backwoods for lunch.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Warm Day Here In SoCal

Up early and out for a walk with Jean and her dogs this morning. It was chilly when I let Hiker outside at 6 am, but by the time we went for our walk, the Santa Ana winds had kicked up and it was already getting warm. We let the dogs play in my back yard for about 45 minutes and the Jean left and I did some housework before heading over to Sam's Club to fill the car with gas and buy a few items I needed. Watched Y&R and had lunch and then Hiker and I went over to Placerita Canyon and did a short 2 mile walk. It was about 90° while we were out today. They say that it will start cooling down the rest of the week.

Here is Hiker at the Boo Tree in Placerita Canyon

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Another Lazy Sunday

On Sundays, I like to sleep in awhile and then watch “CBS News Sunday Morning” while lying in bed. Got up around 8 am and made a couple of poached for me and one for Hiker. Put the sheets and towels into the washing machine and then into the dryer and then Hiker and I headed out to get my lottery tickets for next week. Balanced my check book, made the bed and did a few other things around the house. Kept telling myself I needed to get out for a walk with Hiker, but I just was not in the mood to do so. The weather was hazy again today. Last night I watched “August, Osage County” and was very disappointed. I really thought the movie would be much better than it was because I love Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts, but this movie was not one of the best from either of them. I have now seen most of the movies that had been Oscar nominees and out of all of them, I still think “Gravity” was the best one. So this coming Wednesday, I have a repairman coming out from Sears to look at my dishwasher. It is starting to make weird noises, so I'm thinking that the motor or pump is going out. Back when Ben was alive, he would have just said “let's buy a new one”, but I'm trying to decide what I want to do if they cannot fix the problem...if I should just buy a new one or not. I only use the dishwasher once or twice a month since it's just me now. I'm hoping they can just change the bad part out but since the dishwasher is over 15 years old, I'm wondering if they can do that.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Simple Saturday

Slept in about a hour this morning then headed over to pick Jean up as we were going to the Earth/Arbor Day Event at Central Park. Before we went there, Jean wanted to go by the college to the HazMat materials drop off. She had some old cans of paint she wanted to get rid of. By the time we got to the park, there were already a lot of people there. A lot of them get their early to get the free bags of mulch and the free trees. Didn't seem as though there were as many booths at the event this year and they were not giving away as many good free goodies as they did last year, which is actually the main reason we go. But I always enjoy talking with the fire fighters, sheriffs and foresters. Ran into a couple of Jean's friends there and I ran into my friend Linda Clark from my grief support group. This year the weather was cooler for the event than it was last year. Actually had to wear a sweater. Got back home just in time to let my gardener into the back yard so he could mow it. As usual, Hiker was excited to see me. I know she hates it when I have to leave her at home. I could take her to the Earth/Arbor Day Event because it is in the park and a lot of other people take their dogs, but it would be hard to look at things if I had to keep an eye on her. Stayed a little hazy all day and in the mid-60s.

Saw this white poppy in our community which is strange because our California poppies are usually yellow or orange.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Spent The Day With The Poppies

Up early this morning to first take all of the dogs for a walk and then Jean and I headed up to the Antelope Valley to visit the California Poppy Reserve. I was not able to take Hiker with me to hike with us up there as they only allow service dogs on the reserve. The parking lot was really full when we pulled in and then we found out that there was some kind of a field trip with a bunch of kids, but I guess the parents brought them as there was no bus or anything big in the lot. It was breezy when we got there and wasn't too bad for about an hour but then the wind started blowing really hard. The poppies were starting to close up and we were getting dust in our eyes. We hiked about 2.5 miles all over the hills and we stopped at the visitor's center and we each bought a T-Shirt. On the way up to the reserve, we passed an antique barn, so on the way back we stopped and went inside. They sure had a lot of stuff in that big old barn. Jean bought a little dog figurine, but I didn't buy anything. We then headed into Palmdale where we went to Alice's Diner for lunch. I used to go there when I worked in Palmdale at Lockheed, but had not been there in about 10 years. The food was not as good as I remembered, but was OK. Came home and put a load of laundry into the washing machine and then started going through my photos. Tomorrow Jean and I are heading over to our city's annual Earth Day/Arbor Day event at Central park. Should be a fun day.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Hazy Thursday

I fell asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow last night. Hiker woke me up at exactly 6 am to let her go outside then we went back to bed for a little while. After breakfast, I headed over to Wal-Mart. Bought some food for Hiker, some stuff for gardening, 3 pairs of shorts for the warmer weather and a take and bake pizza for dinner. Hiker had to look in all of the bags while I was putting stuff away. After lunch, Hiker and went outside and played ball for awhile. It was hazy all day, but still in the mid 80s. We also went on a short walk to the park. So my neighbor Jean and I are going to try to go to the Poppy Reserve again tomorrow since we didn't get to go yesterday. I won't be on the computer most of the day. Hope I'll have some good photos to share with everyone.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Power Main Breaker Fixed

Got up at 2:15 am to go to the bathroom. I have night lights all over my house and when I got up, I noticed it was darker than normal then realized that the night lights were not on. I started checking the rest of the house and found that 2/3 of my house did not have any electricity. The exact same thing happened 15 years ago and at that time one of the guys from the our community's construction crew came by and found that the underground electrical box between my house and my neighbor's house had shorted out, so I was guessing that the same box was causing the problem. I could not go back to sleep because I was upset. I called Javier (the foreman of the community crew) and he came by around 8:30 and checked it out. He found that what was causing the problems was my main breaker switch. It had shorted out and so the GFI shut it down to prevent it from catching fire. He said he'd come back during his lunch break and replace it for me. Since it is not a community problem, he cannot fix it except on his own time. He got it working for me until he was able to come back. So I had called Jean a little after 6 am because we had planned to leave around 8 am to go up to the Poppy Reserve. We have rescheduled our trip for Friday. I went out after lunch and sprayed some weeds in the area of the yard that I do not let Hiker go into. Since I only got about 3 hours of sleep last night, I fell asleep on the sofa this afternoon. Javier arrived around 3 pm to fix the breaker. He said he was extremely busy with work today so it took him awhile to get back. It only took him 10 minutes to switch out the breaker. He showed it to me. You could see where the plastic around the terminals had melted. It was very warm here today. Got up to 90° on my patio.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Another Tuesday

Up at 7 am and then headed over to the Senior Center for my weekly support group. Good group today. We were celebrating Jane's 80th birthday which is on April 11th. Had another member from the “Caregiver's Group” join us. I remembered him from when I was in that group when Ben was in the hospital. His wife passed away yesterday. She'd been sick for about 4 years and was in a coma her last few days. Tomorrow I won't be online until later in the day as my neighbor Jean and I are heading up to the Antelope Valley to the California Poppy Reserve. I cannot take Hiker with me on this hike because they do not allow dogs out on the trails at the reserve. I don't know if it's because there are so many snake out there or what, so Hiker will have to stay home. Hopefully I will have a lot of photos to share with everyone.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Warm Monday

Out of bed early this morning and out for our walk with Jean and her dogs. It was already pretty warm. After Jean left, Hiker and I went in to have our poached egg breakfast and Hiker was a very bad girl. I always give her an egg in her dog dish and I put mine on an English muffin with low-fat ham and fat free cheese. I put hers in the bowl and mine was on the counter. I left the room for just 2 seconds and when I came back, Hiker had stood up on her back legs and took the slice of cheese off of my sandwich and I'm sure if I had not caught her, she would have taken the rest of the sandwich too. She has never done that before. I scolded her, telling her how bad she was and that she was not to do that. I never spank her, so I hope the scolding will help her to understand that what she did was bad. I also ignored her for awhile to let her know that if she's bad that she doesn't get any attention for awhile. I cleaned the house after that. I vacuum all the time, but every 3 months, I do what I consider my “deep cleaning” and that's what I did this morning. When I finished, I sat down on the sofa and Hiker got on the sofa next to me and kept looking at me while I ignored her. Then she laid down next to me and every once in awhile, she would touch me with her paw, but I continued to ignore her. I want her to understand she cannot be bad. Since I do not spank Hiker and I cannot “ground” her as you do children, I just ignored her for most of the day. I finally went in and gave her a hug and told her I still love her. She started kissing me like crazy. She knew I was mad at her. We did not go for a walk this afternoon because I was tired from doing my housework this morning. Got up to 89° here today.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Tranquil Sunday

Another night of not falling asleep until after midnight. Slept in until 7:30 am. Would have slept in later but Hiker decided she wanted to play with her squeaky Santa toy. Last night she pulled the barking “I wanna get a different toy out of my toy bin” routine. I opened her bin for her and she pulled out the rubber Santa that I got her last Christmas and now that's the only toy she is playing with. She gave up on the rubber pumpkin that she took out of the bin last week. Put the sheets and towels into the washing machine, made breakfast and then headed over to get my lottery tickets. Came back home and emptied the dishwasher then checked my emails and my Facebook page. Started watching “Pearl Harbor” on AMC. I have never seen the movie in its entirety and I still haven't because after lunch, I took a break to get Hiker out for a short walk. We didn't go very far because I am expecting my friend Lynn to come by and see if she wants any of the CalKing sheet sets I still have. Lynn came by a little after 2 pm. Hiker had never met her before and Hiker's hair was standing up and she was barking. She finally calmed down though and let Lynn into the house and accepted her. Lynn thought maybe Hiker reacted toward her the way she did because Lynn was wearing a hat. Got up to 80° here today.

Topsy Turvy Tomato Planter

On February 17, 2014 I bought a Topsy Turvy tomato planter and hung it on my patio. My brother Keith was here when I set it up and he told me to take a photo of it every Sunday and send it to him so he could see how it was progressing. Below are the photos I've taken for the past 8 week and today I found 2 very small tomatoes starting.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

What A Beautiful Day!

Thirty-four years ago on this exact date (and yes it was a Saturday), Ben and I were married in Las Vegas. We took both of our mom's with us up there for the day. We went to the court house and purchased our marriage license and then walked around the corner to the Justice Of The Peace office and were married. We went to lunch and then on our way out of town, stopped at one of the casinos to play some slots and then headed home. Our last anniversary together (our 31st) was spent in the Kaiser Hospital in Panorama City. Ben was in ICU with a trache in his throat and he was unconscious the whole time I was there that day. I sat next to his bed and held his hand. I've gone through three anniversaries without him since he passed away, but for some reason, this one was hitting me harder than the previous ones. Last night I sat on the edge of my bed crying while Hiker cuddled up next to me and looked at me with sad eyes and her ears down. She kept licking me. Don't know what I would do without her. We got out of bed at 8 am and I had some breakfast and put a load of laundry in the washer. Watched a good movie on The Hallmark Movie Channel called “Edge Of The Garden” then took Hiker out for a walk in the afternoon. What a beautiful day it was here in SoCal, but we are supposed to get hot and have summer like weather next week. Hope it doesn't get too hot.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Overcast Day

Since I have not been sleeping very well, I took a sleep aid last night before I went to bed and it helped me to fall asleep around 9:30 pm. I still had some strange dreams but I slept through the night until around 5:30 am. Got up at 6 am and got ready for our Friday dog walk with Jean. Jean and I were going to replace an outside faucet that leaks in my front yard so after she took her dogs home, she came back and we tried to remove the old faucet but it was so old and the hard water deposits caused it to be stuck to the main pipe and we could not remove the old faucet. We didn't want to try to force it because we didn't want to brake the water pipe, so we gave up. Guess I'll just have to have the leaky faucet. It doesn't leak constantly, but it does leak bad when I have the hose turned on. Was overcast here this morning and only 40°. Warmed up to 60° by the afternoon. Before lunch I decided to make some homemade dog biscuits for Hiker on my “Bake-a-Bone”. After they were done, Hiker and I took a bag of them over to Jean's for her dogs Sassy, Timmy and Charlie, then Hiker and I went for a walk down along the dry riverbed.

Hiker waiting for Jean and her dogs for our walk

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Couldn't Wake Up Today

Went to bed at 10 pm last night but didn't fall asleep until after 1:30 am. I've been having trouble sleeping the past few night and I know it's because I've been thinking more about Ben due to the fact that this Saturday would have been our 34th wedding anniversary. Hiker woke me up just after 6 am to go outside, but then I went back to bed and fell back to sleep for another 2 hours. Was still very drowsy when I finally got up. Had some breakfast and then I headed over to the grocery store for my weekly shopping. It was only 37° on my patio when I got up this morning, but it warmed up to 65° by the afternoon. There was another small earthquake over in Malibu today. I didn't feel it as it was small and far away. Hiker and I went for a nice walk this afternoon over at Canyon Country Park. The sun was shining and the sky was very blue. The flowers in the park are really blooming.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Cloudy, Sunny, And Then Cloudy Again

Since it was Wednesday, and I don't usually have anything planned on Wednesdays, Hiker and I slept in this morning. However Hiker did not want to stay in bed as long as I did. She kept bugging me to get up, but I won (LOL). Went up to Sam's Club this morning to do a little shopping. Left Hiker at home this time as I was only gone for about 45 minutes. The weather here today was “iffy”. We had a little rain again last night and all day today the sun would come out and for awhile and then go back behind the clouds and it would get really dark looking like it might rain. Had thought about going somewhere for a walk or a hike, but was not sure about the weather so decided to just stay inside. Plus I was just not in the mood today to exercise. When Hiker and I walked up to the mail box this afternoon, it was raining a little. My older brother Ron called me this afternoon. He had to go in for secondary cataract laser surgery today and he was calling to tell me all went well. Now I'm waiting to hear from my younger brother Keith who is going to get a second opinion for the digestion problems he has had for years.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Another Day At Group

Woke up around 12:30 am and it sounded like it was pouring down rain outside. Went back to sleep and woke up again around 6 am and didn't hear any more rain. Let Hiker outside and gave her some food and then went back to bed until 7 am. Went to my support group today. Unlike last week, we had a full house when class started. The two new ladies that came last week returned plus we had another new lady join us today. Excellent discussions today. After group, 6 of us went over to Sizzler for lunch. We are planning a day trip over to Descanso Gardens later this month, so that will be nice. When we came out from lunch it had gotten very cloudy, windy and a little chilly. They say we may have more rain tonight. We seem to be getting our wet weather late this year. Our raining months are usually January and February. Hiker was really in a playful mood when I got home. I guess last night she got tired of the usual toys she has been playing with because she wanted me to open the tin container that the rest of her toys are in. She picked out a specific toy and has been playing with nothing but it since she took it out of the container. Silly dog.