It wasn’t a bad day. More, it was a day when you don’t stop moving and when it’s over, you wonder if you accomplished anything. There were so many stops and starts and lots of running up and downstairs. I never made it to comments. I haven’t opened any emails. I did take quite a few pictures but haven’t had time to process them.  The rain is just starting. It may not hit us as hard here —  not the rain, anyway — but definitely very high winds. With the trees still full of leaves, that means blowing branches and breaking trees. The animals must know what’s coming. Everything was in a feeding frenzy.

Photo” Garry Armstrong

Our nor’easters are essentially “local hurricanes.” Storms come in from the ocean and start to spin. They don’t move. So if it’s rain, there’s flooding. In the winter, we’ve gotten as much as three or four feet of snow before it finally breaks up. With the contractor working, there was a strong sense of pressure to get finished before the weather moved in. Then, there were phone calls. I’m checking out other medical insurance. I should have made the calls earlier in the week, but I had to make them today.

Meanwhile, it’s the world series but I think they are going to cancel the American League Pennant because of the weather. A glitch in Garry’s baseball channel went on for hours and entailed a prolonged wait on hold for tech support. To learn, as I suspected, they were having problems. The baseball channel has a lot of problems, but if you want to watch baseball, gotta have it. I needed to fix Garry’s broken email too — which wasn’t difficult but took a long time. Warning! Delete old emails! If you don’t, eventually your email server stops serving and goes on strike.

The contractor did a GREAT job on the house. He’s still here. It is a real improvement. No more rot and no more of that sloppy, moldy old door … and the front door is finally insulated and nicely finished. It needs a new painting, but I think maybe it’s too late.


Tomorrow, we have to take the car in because somehow, one of the two latches that keep the hood in place broke off. No accident or anything. It’s just gone. It’s not a big deal driving a few miles into town, but a longer trip could cause serious damage. Meanwhile, since both Garry and I have doctor appointments next week at UMass, their automated equipment calls every day for each appointment. They are such long calls, too. I feel a powerful need to go edit their electronic phone calls.

None of this sounds like a big deal and it wasn’t a big deal, but It was busy and fragmented. This is the only thing I’ve written today and I need to process at least a few pictures. Frozen pizza for dinner because I’m off my meds for a few days to give the rest of me a break. Today is the day I realized what a difference they make. With the washing of the dishes, the official day is done. I feel like the day never fully started. I knew this month was going to get weird. On my agenda for tomorrow is explaining to the doctor that Garry’s has run out of hydrochlorothiazide because The Duke ate the container. Duke doesn’t (fortunately!) eat the pills. Just the plastic container. And any wood he can wrap his jaws around.

I have a lot of natural antiqued wood furniture. Duke is not the first wood chewer in the household. Only the most recent and enthusiastic.

Wood-Eating Duke

Categories: Anecdote, Gallery, Home, humor, Marilyn Armstrong, Mumford River, Photography

Tags: , , , , , ,

21 replies

  1. Really happy you were able to get some repairs done on your house before winter!


  2. Delighted your door is new and protection from incoming weather. Looks wonderful! Pizza sounds good, always a great stop gap. Hate fragmented, so annoying. You just get settled and it’s time to go again. I prefer to do all in one go if possible. We’re still enjoying sunshine for part of most days, but it’s begun raining. Still wondering what the winter will bring as the summer wasn’t that hot and not prolonged. Talked to other long time residents and they all agree with my assessment, probably more rain than snow for the winter. We’ll see.


    • It’s just not possible anymore. Garry has his stuff to deal with and I have a whole other set of issues, but at least the house looks a lot better. It should be a LOT less drafty this year, except of course for the doggy door. We should change that too, but the Duke will destroy it in less than a week.


      • I’m thrilled, really thrilled about the house and getting that major problem fixed. It looks wonderful! Sorry about Duke, I know, we were thinking of a doggy door when we finally move, but Loki is 100 lbs. and sits to my waist so it would have to be huge and that might let other critters in which is the concern. If we get a place with a fenced yard, which we’re hoping for, then I can let him out he can do his business and all’s well. He got himself into problems with this last surgery, nothing major, but he did require antibiotics in case as liquid had built up around the surgery. Its looking well but he can’t walk on it so another 4 weeks indoors. It’s been 20 weeks now. He’s eager to get out, and he has a high pain threshold. The vet was astounded. He didn’t mind them plunging a needle into the wound, not a wince or anything. Personally I think it’s because it’s his first out side since the first surgery. but then who knows. He does have a high pain threshold why we didn’t know he had a problem.


  3. I’ll add my congratulations to the pile for you being able to get that necessary work done. Thank goodness!! I was really getting worried about it. And bless the contractor who doesn’t try to bankrupt the pensioner. Sounds like you found a really good one!! Keep his number somewhere handy so that if he’s needed again, you’ve got the info. But it sounds like Winter in your home is going to be all right. *phew*


    • It will be a lot less drafty. The deck door still needs repair, but I need more money first and that’s going to take a while to collect. Surprisingly, there are still a lot of leaves still on the trees. The storm didn’t strip the trees as I thought (everyone thought) it would. So we are still having Autumn!


  4. The house looks much better — glad you were able to get it repaired before the weather came in!


    • There’s no disguising that the new window used to be a door since it totally doesn’t match … but he didn’t have the right color siding and to go buy it especially — and you can’t just buy a little bit of vinyl siding because it comes in house-sized sheets — it would have cost us a lot more. Anyway, the window still has a doorbell which is a bit of a giveaway. The front door looks GREAT. Not only did he add the decorative stripping, but he also insulated it. It will be a LOT less drafty in here this winter! Not counting the mess from the doggie door being opened and closed 200 times a day which sets up its own draft. But it’s better. If I just had a little more money, I could get a really inexpensive repair to our gutters (which need it!) … but I think until we find out what the car will cost, we’re out of money.

      Next, trying to keep Owen from cutting down oak trees in front of the house. He just wants some LIGHT in the house. We are so enclosed by trees, it’s really dark inside. I don’t mind much, but it has always bothered him. Trees fall on people and I know that even the pros can and do get badly hurt. No falling trees, son.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I am glad you have now managed to get your house fixed against the weather and it is really looking good. I think one of the negative sides to getting old is the time spent on visits to doctors and other unpredictable upheavals. At lunch time a piece of one of my back teeth broke off. No big deal and it doesn’t even hurt (yet) but I made an appointment to see the dentist, which will be next week. There is always something that crops up.


    • Teeth are a big one, too. Good you are seeing the dentist right away because teeth don’t get better.

      I wish I’d gotten more done on the house, but at least it is sealed against the weather and we won’t be getting those drafts from the front door. But today we have the car dealer. A little clip that holds the hood in place fell off. I think it should be covered by the warranty. We didn’t have an accident or anything. It just broke off the hood, but one way or the other, it has to be fixed. The hood is sitting funny.

      AND I’ve got two doctor appointments next week and Garry has another the week after and a dentist a few days later. Whatever happened to the free time we were supposed to get when we retired?

      Liked by 1 person

  6. That door looks great. You’ll be so glad to have it on cold, windy days.


    • He insulated it properly, so aside from the doggie door (I need a new one of them, too … another $20 and the Duke will shred it in days so it doesn’t seem worth the effort), it should be much warmer. We’re a well-insulated house otherwise. Our attic is entirely stuffed with fiberglass insulation so the snow doesn’t melt off our roof until summer. That’s great unless we have a lot of heavy snow. Then I have to get someone up there to shovel it off. ANOTHER few hundred dollars!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Marilyn, how late was it when you wrote this, because I went to bed really late and didn’t see this before I went to bed. Your “new” exterior wall and door look great. Did the insurance ever agree to pay? Yes, I’d say you have some week going on. Glad the frozen pizza came to your aid. And, in case you need something more to do, throw an “Unfortunate Signage” photo my way:


    • I actually wrote this early in the day, but I scheduled it for the morning. It was the ONLY writing i did until late at night when I finally got enough pictures processed to put them up. I have hundreds more and Garry came back from the dentist with an SD card full of pictures, too! There’s not enough time anymore for anything. What happened to retirement and lots of free time? I have NO time. I barely get time to sleep.

      Liked by 1 person

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