First week of the New Year!

Monday, Jan 1 Happy NEW YEAR! & Super Moon Seattle’s view of the super moon with the Smith Tower in the center. That is the > 100 year old building my grandfather, John Benjamin Wilkins worked as a carpenter, lived in West Seattle, and began raising 3 children there. My mom was the youngest born in 1914. Then they returned to GA and raised 5 more children.

No CPAP – Oximetry for Dec 31: SpO2 low 82, 3 events <88% with overall avg., 92.5%. Avg. low SpO2 90.7%. Pulse avg. 57.4, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 18 min.

We spent the day on chores and the blog. Late getting it published, but we did… after 10 o’clock PM.

Tuesday, Jan 2

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 1: SpO2 low 85, 5 events <88% with overall avg., 93.5%. Avg. low SpO2, 90.7%. Pulse avg. 57.4, low 52. Slept 8 hrs 38 min.

My exercise class was cancelled today, so I did not go to town, for pharmacy items. I have much catching up to do on our Jan/Feb music for our Fiddlers & Friends group. I succeeded in finalizing the playlist, but will need only to run 19 copies, back to back of two pages, and attach to the audience copies from last year. Saves a trip to town and just costs a little for printing and only a few pages of paper.

I called Fairpoint customer service and they changed our email address to the new joint one, so we will receive our bill monthly via the G-mail account. It had been going to the old one that has faded into the Aether. While the neighbors were making noise late Dec. 31st, we lost contact with that old friend. So sad.(John says: “Since the heads up way last summer, Nancy has notified hundreds of people and sites to make the change. 3 cheers for her.

I wrote an email to my previous cardiologist’s nurse, Colleen Meyer, about a Cardiologist replacement for me. I await her call or email notification. John says she may be off this week. She’s usually very prompt in communication.

Wednesday, Jan 3

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 2: SpO2 low 85, 2 events <88% with overall avg., 92.9%. Avg. low SpO2, 91.8%. Pulse avg. 56.3, low 51. Slept 8 hrs 53 min.

I worked more on Jan/Feb F&F music. I took out time to make my lunch to take to the food bank, so I wouldn’t have to eat the pasta and dark green salad. It was tuna fish/egg salad & lettuce.

I met Kristin and Casey at the Food Bank. She brought back John’s WTA green hat she’d borrowed last spring, and stayed for our music and lunch. We had a nice visit.

I left and dropped off a loaf of bread to a gal who is visually impaired and doesn’t drive. I need to see if I can find her some white rolls and buns. She is a few blocks west of my trip from the Food Bank to SAIL exercise class.

Went on to SAIL class and we had a full house. My FitBit recorded 25 minutes of vigorous exercise. Good after the layoff for New Years. I picked up groceries and pharmacy items for John at Super 1, for me at Safeway, and took a box, with cut-out handles, for my groceries. A decree by the EBRG city communists council requires stores to charge 5¢ for 1-time use plastic and brown paper bags. Super-1 gives a 5¢ discount to those with their own box or bags, and that also saved the 5¢ tax. That is a dime in my pocket.
We use the paper bags for kitchen waste that composts. So, at Costco we bought 500 for <$8; or 1.6¢ per bag. These actually fit the kitchen space better than the large ones from the grocery store. Three cheers again! An aside, by John: The City of Seattle started a fee of 1.75¢ per ounce on soft-drinks. That's $1.18 on a 2 liter bottle. The item price for house brands is 90¢ to $1.20 before tax. The bean counters of Seattle expect to raise $15,000,000 this year to spend on their trendy projects. The Seattle Costco put a sign up telling members where to go to nearby Costco stores just outside the city limits. No extra fee there. We can see that $15 M not materializing. Link to story

On my way home I traveled the route near the airport and dropped off the WSJs we read and give to a business student, and a block away, I picked up a bunch of coffee cans. A gal was collecting these in her pump house, and her husband runs a business in Ellensburg, near where I travel to and from the Food Bank, so he is the transfer point. He met me to transfer these to boxes in the back of my car. The ice was treacherous in their parking lot on the north side of the building and made me consider carrying along my trax during weather like this. (I did later in the week).
Here is a photo from The Free Box Facebook site that grabbed my attention and I asked John if he wanted them. He has a unique use for them.
{Begin John} The use involves strawberries. In the photo, the two upper berries are called Cabot. The other one, with the top of a Quarter showing, is a different variety — very nice. These are from 2014. Cabot berries, being large and heavy, tend to lay on the ground. This makes for contact with organisms, both fungus and crawly things. I want to experiment with 3 or 4 ways to keep them off the ground, and keep irrigation water off the berries. [Remember giardia? I do.] Among other ideas, I want to cut the end of the cans out, sink them into the soil with extra fill, and have a single-plant raised bed. I’ve ordered new plants for delivery after March 26th. {End John}

Now I’m back to working on music. Worked much of the evening, with a break for a great chicken casserole dinner from John (brown rice, green beans, mushrooms, & with help from a can of chicken soup).

Thursday, Jan 4 Happy Birthday John !!

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 3: SpO2 low 87, 3 events <88% with overall avg., 93.8%. Avg. low SpO2, 91.9%. Pulse avg. 56.4, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 34 min. Wow, yesterday was good, but this is the best ever!

Go to Rehab. John went along to help carry things, and to read his WSJs.
We took cashews by to Louaine.
John made brownies from a box. A cup of chopped cashews made them special. We served some warm with a dollop of ice cream. Happy birthday! (photo snagged from web)

More time with music creation.

Friday, Jan 5

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 4: SpO2 low 84, 4 events <88% with overall avg., 91.9%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.8%. Pulse avg. 56.8, low 50. Slept 8 hrs 31 min.

I had to put trax on my shoes to walk to John’s car today. Mine had very little gas, and we are driving it to Costco tomorrow to get my new prescription glasses ordered and we’ll buy gas while there at a much lower price.

My sole purpose for going to town was to be the photographer for the AAC event today, Game Day, with a luncheon of Elaine Bleggi’s multiple cheese & macaroni casserole. It is so good.They served it with a wonderful looking spinach salad, but I cannot have spinach because of its vitamin K content & my being on Coumadin, so I took my own Iceberg lettuce/tuna fish/egg/ pistachios/Bleu cheese salad. John told me I should have had a few bites, and upon reflection I agree.

Because of the ice, many people cancelled. They had fixed food for 50, so I brought some home for John, in my container I took in for my salad. He had stayed home to, among other chores, put gravel down on the walkway to our cars, others: re-positioning a solar light, working on a broken fence, and providing water for the horses, feeding deer, cats, and exercising Annie.

Here are more collages of our AAC event. We had two tables and after lunch played Jeopardy that table 2 won, and Scrabble, which table 1 (my table) won. Everyone enjoyed the food and fun, and the temperature had gone above freezing for leaving. Each table started with the same number of letters, and we replaced them as we used them to put on the board. They were face down on a table so one couldn’t see the letter or the points worth. Also, it helps to have Scrabble players at your table to know all the rules for doubling up, and having successful words.
We got clever with our positioning of the letters off the board.

Happiness expressed by the winning team !! (minus one man). Sandra, Curtis, Marilyn, Catherine, Debbie, and Nancy. I do not remember what was so funny at the time, but maybe it was Katrina, balancing on two folding chairs using John’s camera.

The link below will go to all the pictures (some more than once) taken that day on John’s camera. I’m adding this link here, because otherwise people not on Facebook will not be able to see them. The above collages are pretty small, maybe even in this blog.

I have a lot more photos of the event (see above link), but I will send them to the AmeriCorps gals and they will put them on Facebook on the Ellensburg Adult Activity Center’s site. If you are on Facebook, search for it and review the photos and activities there. It’s a wonderful resource for people 55 and older, and in some cases, of need for exercise, people who are younger are allowed to participate in activities for their health. Every first Friday of the month is a lunch with some neat activity. We have people on walkers and in wheelchairs that come to the center. The local HopeSource bus delivers people with their wheelchairs or walkers (free of charge). They will come out as far as needed. A friend of mine rode the bus for 2 years 30 miles from Ellensburg to Cle Elum to visit her husband in an assisted living home there. They pick a person up at their home, and deliver them to doctors, to the grocery store, or other special needs.

I intended to stay for the SAIL exercise, but it would have been over an hour wait, so I ran one other errand in town, and left. I drove back through Kittitas and picked up some wool knitted hats — not that we really need more hats. Still they made a late birthday present. They were free, from the clothing bank and food pantry, there. They’re only open Fridays, at 1:00 for 2 hrs. I walked in and said I wasn’t there for food but just looking for the winter pullover hats for my hubby. The lady in charge said she had a box and would bring them out. (Clothing is in the unheated back of the building and too cold in this weather to allow people to visit). She left the box by the entrance in case others needed one.

I drove by a house off No. 81 Road. We haven’t learned why it is called that. There is also a No. 6 road, but not others. I picked up a
Seattle dressed teddy bear from a Buy Nothing East Ellensburg/ Kittitas Facebook site member, Shannon. I’ll give to Katrina (AAC Director & Seattle Seahawk fan, for their special decorated truck).

I finished the songs (PDFs) for our KV F&F group, and emailed them last night. I worked on them much of the afternoon and evening.

John took the Mac ‘N Cheese I brought home, added more cheese, and pieces of cauliflower to go along with slices of a breast of chicken we bought yesterday, and he fried it with a special sauce with spices. Nice meal to end a busy day.

Saturday, Jan 6

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 5: SpO2 low 85, 4 events <88% with overall avg., 92.1%. Avg. low SpO2, 89.8%. Pulse avg. 57.8, low 49. Slept 8 hrs 37 min.

Working on pictures from yesterday, the blog, and getting ready to drive to Union Gap, to Costco. The weather is beautiful (cold) but sunny. John has already fed the cats, deer, and now went out to take care of the horses. We’ll have sausage, eggs, toast, and peaches for brunch and leave. Driving my car to fill up with $2.65/gal gasoline. Cheaper by 22¢/gal 50 miles away, and take off 4% of that too as a returned reward by the VISA/Costco card.

More deer (the twins and mom) arrived for treats, and Sue made it in for her morning cat food. The other two outside cats, Woody & Czar ate earlier.

We ran out of sun at the Military exit and I pulled off I-82 to grab my camera for the view of fog in all valleys ahead of us. We ended up driving more slowly through thick fog in several places.
In the photo, under the near fog is Selah, and after the gap is Yakima. The next ridge is 7 miles south of the gap, and we could not see any of it.

We made it to Costco and was it ever crowded! Checkout lines went down the aisles for a long way. Perhaps the first Saturday of a new year and after Christmas is not the best time to go.

I started my trip through Costco at the Optical department and had to wait until five people went ahead of me, but I occupied myself by coordinating people as they arrived, and told them who they would be following. They need a pick a number system for times like today. The two clerks were very appreciative of my efforts. I was appreciative when Daniel got to me (he was my original helper when I got them in November), listened to the story, took my new prescription for my right eye, and the glasses and said they would do it at no cost. I’m still surprised at that service, but pleased to accept it. They will regrind my right lens in my regular glasses and my sunglasses (identical frames). We will return in about a week to pick them up.

John and I went around the store picking up the few things we needed.
Nice they have wide aisles, because of the crowd. We went past a Sears store on the way to Costco. The large lot had, at most, a dozen cars. This may be the last year for Sears and K-Mart (same owner). Say good bye. We made a quick stop at Walmart just before leaving the metro-Yakima area. Walmart is working hard to adjust to the changing retail scene. Very busy, today.

We eventually made it to the medical supplies part of Costco. I asked the pharmacists about my GoodRX coupon to check if they accept them. I was happy to find out they do, if I print it out and bring with me. I am used to doing that already, in Ellensburg. On one recent drug John just refilled for $15.20, we can get it there for $8.73, so I need to transfer several prescriptions there, after I check them out on line, and as John said to me tonight, I need to spread the word. I’ll start here. If you need to know more, just email me. Or, you can go to and check it out yourself. I learned about it from my cardiologist’s nurse several years ago. It has saved us many dollars. You don’t have to go through your insurance and can use a credit card (such as I have), the VISA/Amazon/Chase Bank, and get an additional 2% discount on medicines. I cannot use that at Super 1 Pharmacy, because their charges report as a grocery store, not a pharmacy.
These medical things are convoluted, complicated, and tiresome.

I left John in the checkout aisle through the medicines and walked down through all the aisles to the farthest one (near the entry, and went back to tell him to come there. I’m sure we saved time but by being so far away from the office, we paid for our TurboTax program, and the “runner” never made it down before we were packed and gone. We got home and realized we didn’t have it. It will be our word only, so I tried to call to report it, because we were charged for it, but it is an empty box they replace after you have paid for it. According to the web presence, the office was supposed to be open until 6:00 tonight, and I called at 4:45. No answer, so I searched for some way of writing customer service an email. I did that, and hope someone responds and believes me. Otherwise, we’re out $54. + tax.

We came home to many chores and finally had our supper. It was a salad, with iceberg lettuce fixed by Nancy with Bleu Cheese dressing and pistachios, with smoked turkey leg chunks, apples, cauliflower, bread croutons on his and Cheezits bits on mine.

We continued working separately on our computers until dessert (a brownie with cashews, and vanilla ice cream). Now it’s bed time.

Sunday, Jan 7

No CPAP – Oximetry for Jan 7: SpO2 low 83, 9 events <88% with overall avg., 91.3%. Avg. low SpO2, 88.7%. Pulse avg. 53.8, low 49. Slept 8 hrs 24 min.

We have been doing chores and now getting ready for brunch, and to finish publishing this tome.

We checked the weather in Ohio and Pennsylvania where John has relatives. The serious cold just ended and the temperature is rising from mid-20s to low 30s. Freezing rain, sleet, and wind are on the way. That is through Wednesday Noon. There is an old joke about people living in such situations:
Q: What’s is the difference between people living in XYZ-town and a U.S. Penitentiary?
A: Folks in the prison know they are being punished.

Hope your week was fine.

Nancy and John
Still on the Naneum Fan