Category: Family

Where Did August Go?

So, the blog’s been pretty quiet, and there’s a good reason for that. My father-in-law has dementia. It progressed rapidly in August. Bad enough there were a couple of incidents. My mother-in-law couldn’t continue to take care of him. So, the end of August was spent finding the right facility that could take care of him.

Unfortunately that kind of care is not cheap. It looks like in the next couple of months, my MIL will sell her place and come live with The Wife and me. The good news is the Florida real estate market is still running hot, so she should get a good price. The bad news is that the Florida real estate market is still running hot, so rents are high and in short supply. Especially in less populated areas around here.

More Life At Ward Manor

This is more journaling more common events than anything else:

Last Friday, we baby-sat our 11-month-old great-niece. We love the little tyke, but she is exhausting. Particularly now that she is crawling – and want to explore everything. We also had her a little longer than normal due to scheduling conflicts with her parents. By the time we were done, The Wife and I decided to go the easy route and get fast food for dinner. Because of where the new manor is located, it’s usually faster to just race down the interstate. However, this was also at rush hour. Which makes things more interesting. So, while we’re in the drive-through lane, I’m going back and forth on whether it would be faster to go back on the interstate or go down the main street through our town.

The Wife, being much more brilliant than me, reaches over, turns on the GPS, and flips between the two routes and looks at the ETAs. Ah, technology.


The Wife picked up one of my various Transformers and asked me to convert it with the statement “How do you make it grow up?”

Then she was very pleased to find out there was a pink Transformer.


Before the move, Litter Genie refills suddenly became scarce on the ground. In fact, the only way we found some was in a big pack of a Litter Genie XL and 12 refills (or reloads, as I think of them). I thought the XL, being much taller than the regular, would be helpful with going up and down stairs and with all of the litter boxes. Yeah, not so much. I ended up wasting a large portion of the bag because you really couldn’t fill it to where the cutter was at the top. Anyways, the hinge broke while I was carrying it down the stairs, so I ordered a regular one.


Let’s just say my flip-flops and the stairs weren’t getting along. So, I switched over to some sandals. They do get along better with the stairs. However, since the mat I use for my standing desk and the desk elliptical both work better without the sandals, I take them off. Which has resulted in me going barefoot more around the house, since it’s more work to do the sandal straps than just pop off for a bio break or run down for a drink refill. Which may or may not have anything to do with some new pains showing up.

The Wife has also threatened harm if she catches me wearing socks and sandals outside the house.

Small Amusements

Yesterday, I saw this listing come across my FB feed. You really need to flip through the interior photos to see why it’s amusing.

The real amusement was sending it to The Wife, and then listening to her exclamations of horror and bewilderment at the interior decorating.

Life In The Ward House

Last week, since we were off the diet for our birthdays, The Wife offered to make us grilled cheese sandwiches for lunch. I was trying to finish something up when I got a the following text:

The Wife: Sharp or have dry cheese

Me (After pondering for a moment): I’ll have the havarti

The Wife: Stupid autocorrect

The Wife makes excellent grilled cheese.

In other news, The Wife used some of her Prime Day monies to buy me a Masterpiece Transformers Prowl. I wanted one because Prowl was my first transformer, and I’ve always had a soft spot for that toy. It showed up last weekend. I managed to get it from police car to robot. It doesn’t transform like my old Prowl, but it does look much cooler (and much bigger) than my old Prowl. Now, getting it back to police car…

In the helpful life hacks segment, we have found that Method Daily Shower Cleaner will slow down a wasp long enough to bring the hammer down. And by hammer, I mean fistful of paper towels. My fear of insects and similar creepy crawlies evokes a insecticidal rage. They must be killed!

Tropical Storm, No Hurricane, No Tropical Storm

I will admit to being a little concerned when the projected track for Elsa took it up the west coast of Florida. After all, The Wife and I have been in the new house for a little more than three months. And although Florida building codes are strong, I had this tickle in the back of my mind. The one that was screaming about how fast they’re churning out homes. How we keep finding little issues, like the dryer vent I talked about yesterday. So, we did a little bit of storm prep. I pulled in the grill from the back and The Wife’s decor from the front porch. We were a little perturbed with our neighbors who still had their garbage cans out due to a SNAFU with collections.

The rain came down and the wind blew. Not as bad as we feared. The Wife has anxiety around storms, so she didn’t get much sleep. Overall, we suffered one major casualty. The sapling tree in the front yard was blown down. The lawn guy’s coming out to take a look to see if he can get it back up. Failing that, he’ll get us in contact with someone who can.

Overall, not a bad first tropical.

Joys Of New House

Don’t get me wrong. I love our new house. I love that it’s a new house. Particularly with a tropical bearing down. However, because their cranking these houses out as fast as they can, sometimes we run into little issues.

Shortly after we moved in, the dryer’s performance degraded. Rapidly. Frustratingly. I blamed it on the fact that we got, as my nephew in the business calls them, “renters specials”. These were base model washer and dryers that came with the house. Okay, they were part of an upgrade package – which we mainly got because they put blinds on all the windows. I used the dryer’s poor performance to lobby for a sooner-than-planned upgrade for the washer and dryer.

New washer and dryer came in last week. LG’s recommended by one of the consumer sites I frequent. All the options I could want. (I am the family laundry person, so I want all of the fabric, temp, and spin options). Dryer still isn’t working right. However, because this is a nice, new, higher-end dryer, it tells me that the issue is it’s having issues with the dryer vent. Check the hose? Some there, but not a significant blockage.

We call the dryer vent cleaners we used at the old place. They tell us since we’re in a new-build house, the construction folks probably forgot to take the screen off the vent. We could call the builder office and put in a warranty issue. Last time we did that, it took better than a month. I’ll pay the damn service charge and get it fixed faster. In the meantime, we put a pantyhose on the dryer hose and at least get the week’s laundry finished. Okay, the laundry room was a little bit of a sauna, but at least it worked.

Vent tech came. Yep, they didn’t take off the vent screen. You could see the striations of lint from all of the loads of laundry. It was like the walls of a canyon. Except, you know, made of lint. Now to go fight with the warranty folks to see if they’ll refund us the service charge.

I feel like we’re in the shakedown cruise for this house sometimes.

Another Peek Behind the Curtain.

This one’s another in my using the blog as a chronicle of my life.

After months of lies and delays, The Wife and I got fed up and told the furniture store to go fuck themselves, cancel our order, and give us back our money. Good news, we had our cash back. Bad news, we still needed a couch for the upstairs family room. Off to furniture store’s competitors. We wanted a leather sofa or loveseat that didn’t recline or have electronics. And something we could expect to be delivered in less than six months. Sweet FSM, you’d think we were looking for an antique from the colonial period.

One of the competitors said they might have something. Salesperson shows us a floor model of a discontinued line. It’s orange. Very orange. Burnt orange. Not something we’d thought would ever go into our house. We sit down. Damn. Comfy. Very comfy. He takes us around to a couple more that are more traditional in color, but won’t be available for weeks to months. None as comfy as the orange couch. He sees we’re leaning to the orange, but are are still a little leery. Takes us to the sleeper sofas.

It’s gray, so definitely more traditional. But it’s a sleeper. But it has a nifty way of rolling out into the bed that tickles that same part of my mind as my transformer toys. But not as comfy as the orange couch. But we wanted a sleeper sofa. But in the guest room downstairs, not the upstairs family room. But it’s not a bad price. Yeah, not a bad price. In fact, we had some money set aside for the guest room. Calculator. Uh, yeah, we’re taking both.

Actually, the orange couch looks pretty good up there.

Family Happenings

Pretty soon, the Ward household will be a two-teleworker household again. The Wife’s former boss (and her favorite boss) recruited her for a new virtual position with his current company. Full telework and better pay. About the only downside is that because the office is based in New Jersey, we have to pay New Jersey taxes. I am oh so thrilled about handing over money to that government. Of course, the fun part was on the same day The Wife scheduled a meeting with her supervisor to hand in her notice, The Wife’s co-worker quit without notice. Her section lost its two most experienced people.

Meanwhile, I’m dealing with another issue at work. Let’s just say an upgrade went sideways and I’m stuck using web-based version of Office apps. Yeah. Not fun. Particularly when I have one of my big monthly reports due, and IT doesn’t seem to be very responsive to getting it fixed. Fortunately, my boss is very understanding. When she’s not busy laughing at my predicament.

The Wife’s cousin flew in from Washington State, so we have our first houseguest. Since we’re the ones in the family with the spare room. It should be interesting, as this will be the first time I’ve met this individual. It’s one thing to meet new family members. It’s another thing to meet new family members and then have them stay with you. This also means my exercise is being put on hold for the rest of the week. I fear the scale on Monday.

The rifle now has a Holosun red dot and magnifier, some generic BUIS’s, and a Streamlight mounted. Now I just need time/ammo/money to zero the dot. The Brother-In-Law is willing to go with me, but our weekends are looking busy for the next month or so. Maybe we can sneak off for a couple of hours. It still needs a name. I wonder if there’s a Czech version of Vera.