I spent a couple hours beginning the process of cleaning up the clutter in my house in anticipation of two house guests I have coming—at different times—over the next couple of months. I spent the entire two hours on "paperwork," which included:
- Going through a plethora of cash register and credit card receipts strewn about different places in my house including but not limited to:
- my kitchen table
- my washer and dryer
- in one corner of my kitchen counter
- on the ledge of the pass-through between my kitchen and living room
- on a desk under the pass-through in the living room
- on a computer desk in my living room
- on the ledge at the top of my stairs
- on my dresser in my bedroom, and
- on the chest of drawers in my bedroom.
- Organizing all of my medical-related receipts and documentation that has to be managed throughout the year in order to easily file my North Carolina Health Flexible Spending Account paperwork at the end of the year. I am putting aside weekly what will amount to $1,000 at the end of the year, and I wanted to see how I was tracking against spending that, as it's a use-or-lose situation.
First, I organized and totaled up the stack of receipts that I've been carefully placing (okay, throwing) on the TV tray that's set up in the corner of my kitchen (which I didn't count as a receipt-holding venue in item #1 above). These only represent the prescriptions obtained at my local pharmacy. I also found a receipt from my last dentist visit that I'd not so carefully placed there as well. And writing this, I'm remembering my fairly recent eye exam and subsequent glasses purchase, the receipts of which I'm going to have to find and include as well.
This task then took me online to merckmedco.com where I found my year-to-date prescription mail purchases totaling a little over $400, so I printed a copy of that record. All that, with my annual physical coming up in October, which will include lab work, should make me easily reach my $1,000 allotment. Yay!
- Separating what needed to be filed as opposed to what could be thrown away:
- Smith Exterminating receipts, which reminded me that when I stopped my service five months ago, they were supposed to process a one-hundred-eighty dollar-ish credit to my my credit card, which led me to check my online statements since April to find out I still haven't received it even though they said to allow two-to-three credit card cycles for the credit to show up. (Made a note to call them tomorrow.)
- My vehicle tax and my house tax bills, which were paid, but will be needed when filing my 2010 income tax.
- A boatload of Ameriprise Financial investment account statements, notifications, prospectuses, and voting proxies. (And yes, I have every one that I possibly can be sent to me via e-mail.)
- Credit union statements
- Utility bills
- Advertisements that came through the U.S. mail that didn't make it directly into my recycle pile.
- Expired coupons.
- Printed articles that I found compelling at the time, but in "clean-up" mode got relegated to, "If I really want to read about that, I can search for it online again."
I finished that task echoing words I've heard before, "From now on, I'm going to handle paperwork one time, when it comes in. I'm gonna look at it, decide its disposition immediately, and either file it or trash it on the spot." Yeah, right.
In violation of the shampoo study I am currently participating in, I got my hair cut today. Well the study doesn't expressly forbid it, but it does ask you not to if at all possible. My feeling is, "This study is taking longer than you advertised it would, and I need to get two haircuts between now and 09/15, when my $7.99 coupons expire."
Latoya cut my hair, who is the same one who cut it last time, but she didn't remember me as evidenced by her, "It's nice to meet you," as opposed to, "It's good to see you again." I told her about the hair study I'm participating in, about which she was very interested, being a hair stylist and all.
She asked me if it had a lot of natural ingredients in it to which I replied, "I have no idea." How would I know? Although, there are a lot of -iams, -ides, -zines, -trates, -icones, and -propyls in it, so I'm guessing not.
I said that it was some dandruff shampoo, and she immediately responded, "Well, we sell a great dandruff shampoo here; it's silky and it doesn't smell like tar." I noticed this about her the last time: This woman knows whence her bread is buttered. She never fails to try and "up-sell" her customer.
As I always do, I asked her to trim my eyebrows at the end. I didn't this time, but perhaps she would have remembered me if I'd've used my usual line of, "I have to keep them trimmed at my age to keep from having that eyebrows-tangled-up-in-your-eyelashes-ol
Later on this evening I would be the one not laughing, when it occurred to me that the burning sensation in the crease of my left eyelid was from where she'd ever-so-slightly sliced it while manipulating that shaver around my eyes to trim my brows. I hate when that happens.
I bought a very big watermelon that turned out not to look very ripe once I cut into it, and I wondered if I should have waited longer to cut into it. And then I wondered if it would have gotten any riper anyway, since it had already been picked. A quick Google search of "Which fruits continue to ripen after picked?" revealed this bit of information in one of the entries in the results list:
|Apricots, bananas, cantaloupe, kiwi, nectarines, peaches, pears, plantains and plums continue to ripen after they're picked.|
Fruits you should pick or buy ripe and ready-to-eat include: apples, cherries, grapefruit, grapes, oranges, pineapple, strawberries, tangerines and watermelon.
To speed up the ripening of fruits such as peaches, pears, and plums, put them in a ripening bowl or in a loosely closed brown paper bag at room temperature. Plastic bags don’t work for ripening.
I cut up, and de-seeded, a small portion of the watermelon before actually tasting it to confirm that it wasn't very ripe. Not only didn't it taste ripe, about five minutes after that my stomach made a noise like someone had unclogged a drain, and I had a "GI event" that I'm not going to describe any further and after which I decided:
- It's not worth spending the hour-and-a-half it's going to take me to finish cutting up this monster and de-seeding it, and
- I don't know if this could have possibly caused what just happened in my stomach so quickly, but it's not worth serving it to a bunch of people and finding out it could.
Yesterday, Sharon called me to ask me if I was going to our Mostly Social Book Club this evening out at the Streets of Southpoint Barnes & Noble in Durham. "Yes," I said, after which I sent an e-mail to the others reminding them of our meeting.
By about 2:00 this afternoon, only Mary had responded that she thought our meeting was next weekend and that she was babysitting for her granddaughter tonight, and so wouldn't make it. I called Suzanne to make sure she was going. She didn't have it on her calendar either, but she didn't have it on her calendar for next week either. However, she said she'd be there tonight.
Suzanne and I arrived at our 6:30 start time, and by about 6:45, Suzanne called Sharon to see if she was en route. "Oh, I forgot all about it. I'm not coming." You might recall from two paragraphs up that Sharon called me yesterday to remind me about the meeting. I'm just sayin'.
Minutes later, Janet called to say that she'd taken a physically-demanding class over the last two days, and she was exhausted, so she wasn't coming.
Suzanne and I had a luxurious catching-up and talked until about 8:45. During that time, we also reconfirmed our meeting dates for the rest of the year and assigned meeting places to them, as our meeting rotation had gotten a little out of sync during previous lapses in meetings.
I dropped by Flex on the way home, where Scareyoke was going on. I have no idea why, but the bartender gave me my drinks, of which I had two, in those big red Solo cups instead of the regular, much smaller, clear plastic ones. And it wasn't Jim bartending.
Things that make you go, Hmmm.