Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Tumbling towards Christmas

So it's been a roller coaster of a week. Starting on Wednesday, I installed the brand new potty. Three hours of the grossest thing I've probably ever done, but it's all installed and ready to go.

I still reach for the handle to jiggle.

It's a push-button, dual-flush. So instead of using 7 gallons, it uses 1.1/1.6 which is an immense savings, even if we were to use the big button every time. Because of our leveled water bill, the 7 CCFs of water we used ever month is likely going to go down to 4 CCF. In a year, it will pay for itself. Not only that, we are saving water!

We're working on it.

In other news Mr. Smith and I ditched the kids at Granny's house and went to Blowing Rock, NC in search of his weather balloon.

My view on the way to the crash site wasn't so bad.

So I forgot to use my inhaler that morning, but dressed in five layers, aka Die Hard on a mountain, so I was quite toasty. We drove up into NC, down a winding graded road that was, frankly, terrifying. We searched and searched through laurel thickets and amid 80' tall oak trees until, halfway to an asthma attack, I reclined on the ground and saw:

Just 60' off the ground.

We're leaving it to the engineers to design a recovery system.

Probably a pole.

So we trudged back up the winding road. I picked up a little quartz mixed in with the quartzite, slate and limestone. Nothing outstanding about the geology, of course, it's not always what's under the surface that is cool.

Lovely isn't it? Oh, the mountains are nice, too.

We did the other thing that we love to do, we did the tourist thing and went to see THE blowing rock! In the picture you can see the bottom of Grandfather mountain just behind my sweetie, and to his left is Grandmother mountain. I'm not that familiar with the area. They gave us a pamphlet with a guide.

Sorry, ladies, this one is taken!

We didn't have to rekindle the old flame, ours burns stable and bright every day! But I did rekindle my love of National Geodetic Survey markers. There are a few around here to be checked out and I may start "hunting" them, which in my case is taking pics of them, but I popped up on the blowing rock to check out this well worn beauty.

Two pics for the price of one! 

We bought a new mug, which is going to look great on my mug display. Faces on trees were a thing, a little creepy, but a thing. So I bought a mug that had a tree-face on it. It is perfect for hot chocolate!

All the others had goofy teeth.

In other plant-related news, it's a mixed bag. Two of my sage seedlings died, leaving only one remaining. I have what is probably one peppermint seedling, and still have one parsley seedling. The millet is growing like grass, because, well, it's grass. The dwarf sunflower seeds have split but not put out roots, so I am not hopeful, but I'll plant them and see what happens.

I need a bigger window, and grow lights.

And Steve had three female blossoms in the rush of a dozen blooms, I accidentally picked one, but the other two were pollinated and little Steve now has five lemons. Of course, I'd be happy if he'd keep a few more of his leaves through winter. It's making me nervous.

Steve, noir.

And to wrap up the week, the boy got his magnetic laces in, which is both good, as it only takes a moment to get his shoes on and off, and better because I've figured out that I need to work on developing his dexterity and fine motor control. This is why he has trouble. I've been doing some reading from pros and parents for inspiration. I also managed to win at parenting while trimming the Diva's nails, and trimmed some dermis instead. I called the nurseline, but honestly, it's just fine. She's had her shots and the clippers were fairly new. But from now on, I'm going to file her nails.

Little monkey!

And, of course, the reason the post was late this week was because our previous internet provider decided not to TELL us that they forgot to bill us for three months. We have a lot going on, that's why the online bills are important! Well, we switched to their competitor to get faster, cheaper internet--which will still be cheaper than the previous provider once the special year-long promo ends.

And on Monday, I have an appointment for an eye exam. I'm looking forward to it, and to regular appointments from now on, because I'm a grown up.