Monday, September 14, 2020

September 14, 2020 Monday- 2pm

Good afternoon!  
I've already been at this since noon going through my photos, Leah's photos, uploading a couple of short videos (second one isn't finished yet) and trying to get them all on to the blog--LOL!  A bit trickier than it used to be but I am getting the hang of it...I think.
Myself, I didn't take many pictures at all this week, as you will see--but I got you kind of caught up on some of Leah's pics since July.  
Caught a flock of sparrows and didn't even get a shot of the big family of partridges--even though they've been here every day. 
Just been either busy or too tired--LOL!
Before I forget, though!  For those of you devoted letter writers, I have to warn you that something has changed besides just the mail being slower.  Remember when if you had a letter that was too fat (over 1/4 inch thick), too rigid, or an odd shape it was 70 cents?  You could stick an extra stamp on there and have covered more than enough for the hand sorting--no problem?
Well, I mailed a couple of pen refills I had ordered for Leah a bit ago (when we were isolating)...put on two stamps because it was rigid with the refills in their little container.  Leah had to pay several dollars before they would deliver the envelope!?
Well, I thought that must have been a fluke and some cranky person in the post office made a mistake.
Not so, apparently. 
This envelope that came to me had an extra stamp on it, just as I had done with Leah's envelope and have been doing for YEARS.  With two stamps that is $1.10...but I got a notice that I had postage due of $3.30 before they would deliver my "parcel".     

This envelope was that parcel.  ??
I went to the USPS website online and it still says that an envelope that is rigid, square, or odd shaped is supposed to be 70 cents.  Didn't mention about the being over 1/4 inch thick, though, under the regular envelopes.  So I looked under large envelopes (even though this was regular size as you can see and so was mine to Leah).  Well, they did have a category for over 1/4 inch thick under large envelopes--but still that was $ how did they come up with a total of  $4.40??  What a mess!
Therefore--my days of adding in little goodies in the mail are over--unless they are perfectly flat and bendable--LOL!  Things are changing at USPS so I thought I'd give you all a heads up.  Makes me wonder if anything hand-sorted is now considered a parcel?  And are they just randomly making up prices?
Monday I baked.  
Tuesday was Ian's first day of kindergarten--from home.  Even so, they took their traditional picture on the front steps of Ian...
...and both the boys. 
No backpack needed this year.
Ian has his school area upstairs in the hallway--cleared out so no distractions. 
Little table and chair with his laptop that the school district gave him to use.
Since then Leah's added some satchels, etc, that I sent over from my place.
I did a video chat with Ian after his first day.  He met his new teacher and was learning on the laptop how to mute, raise his hand, and stop the picture but leave the voice on...and demonstrated everything for me.  :)
Here's pictures of the McFamily vehicles.  The big burgundy one and the new-to-them little black one...
...which is an electric car!  Nissan Leaf, I believe.  Really cute and spunky!
McFamily has been working a lot on landscaping this summer.
The boys help, too.
They planted trees in the front yard.
This was back in July, I believe.    

Ian took over videoing.  Going to be funny to show this to him when he's older.
They've been getting rid of weeds and putting down rocks.  This is one side of the house.
Here is pre-planting after hauling rocks along the back of the house by the deck.
Planning where all the plants will go.
Going to be so nice when they are finished to watch it all take hold and grow.
The boys are always such good helpers.
Holes dug...
...and plants planted.
Looking good!
I would like a video of a walk around the house and yard when they are all done.
The boys have had a couple of visits with their cousins.
Harder to do the bubble with them since school has started and their parents are teachers.  More quarantining now.
Back to my week...
Thursday Leah dropped off a few groceries from Cashwise.  She's been doing the drive up now every week or two.  Looks quite stark at the waiting area.
But wonderful that they bring it out and put it in your trunk.  She'd go less if we got everything she asks for--LOL!  Still shortages.
On Friday the maintenance man came with the part and spent a long time fixing my dryer.  I was praying he could fix it as I realized that I would be in deep doo-doo if he couldn' you can see!
I'd have to remove all those bookcases in order for him to get the dryer out of here!  Never thought about that before.  Gulp!  I hope they never have to be replaced as long as I live here.  Five years and counting...
So, of course, I spent most of the day Saturday washing clothes and towels.  I thought I was going to go to visit McFamily on Sunday but Dagan got called in to work for a little while and Leah was doing the last day of an online weekend we switched to tomorrow.  Ian doesn't have any classes after lunch.
Today...blogging (good 4 1/2 hours again) and making more bean soup.  Am watching Scott & Bailey on BritBox and finally have been back to writing letters.  
Still feel kind of on a mental/emotional vacation, spending less time online, and plan to keep it up as long as possible.  So much better than being all stressed out over things I have no control over.  Now, sending out positive energy...spreading the love...that is something I can do.  I hope you can feel it!  Won't be long and we can vote!  I'm expecting to get a ballot in the mail fairly soon.  Meanwhile...take good care of yourselves and have a good week--come what may.  Till next time, my dear friends...
"We have a responsibility to hold to the power of love that we know to be true, and to not allow the world around us to deaden that in ourselves."
Lucas Johnson


Rita said...

My comment to (please, please, Blogger) get your comments in my inbox. :)

Bonnie said...

You've got some wonderful pictures of the boys and of all the planting the family is doing. What kind of plants are those in the large bed? They did a good job of spacing everything out. I bet Ian is excited about starting kindergarten. Since all the kids are doing virtual school they will really be computer experts at an early age! I'm so glad you got your dryer fixed. I bet you have been busy catching up with laundry! I hope you and Annie have a good week Rita!

Jon said...

Everything about the postal service is annoying nowadays. I used to love writing letters long ago, but now I haven't sent any Snail Mail in over a year. I don't even know what the current price of a stamp is.

Glad you got the dryer fixed. Moving those bookcases would be LOTS of trouble.

ashok said...

Lovely post

Anvilcloud said...

Scott & Bailey: why did they stop that series? The actor who plays Rachel is also in Vincent, about a private detective group. It's on Prime.

Mail is expensive here. I take package to the post office. They have a little slot to check out envelopes, and I pay dearly if the parcel doesn't fit.

Jenny Woolf said...

We have an online tool here to help calculate postage, giving dimensions, weight etc. and the postage. It's really useful and means there aren't too many nasty shocks! Those children are looking so grown up. Oh, imagine having virtual school! I hope they can get back to "real" school soon with other kids to play with. Of course that has to take second place to defeating the virus. Sure wish we had an election coming up here in Britain. You're well to disengage a bit. Much healthier that way!

Divers and Sundry said...

The house sparrows are taking over the patio, and we don't get the variety we used to because of that :( A little public education on new rates would be a good thing. They're doing a good job with their pretty landscaping. I had bean soup for lunch today with cheese toast (it was national cheese toast day). I've never seen Scott & Bailey. Might hafta try that one :) I'll vote in person early pretty much as soon as I can. Guaranteed not to be crowded :)

Jo-Anne's Ramblings said...

All I have done is looked at the photos today, I have a bad headache making reading stuff difficult, photos are easy and make me smile and think of how our grandchildren bring such joy to our lives

Deb J. in Utah said...

Hello Rita - I love the pictures of your grandsons. So glad that online school is going well! McFamily's yard looks great! So glad you could get your dryer fixed. I'm with you, I am trying to stay away from Facebook in particular right now. Crazy times to be sure. I am glad you are going to vote right away after you get your ballot. We are going to get ours, mark them, and then hand deliver them to the Country Clerk's office. This election is a very important one for sure! Interesting information about the problems you have encountered with the mail. I have been so ticked off about what is going on with the post office. Don't even get me started..... ;-) Hope you enjoy the rest of week. I'll be back to visit again soon. P.S. Hope my letter made it to you.

Lady Fi said...

Awww - the kids are so sweet!

DJan said...

It looks like things are coming along great at the McFamily home. I love all the pictures and am glad to hear that all the birds are back. And glad to hear your dryer is fixed! :-)

Far Side of Fifty said...

Good photos of the kids planting trees! What a great activity for them! I think the Postal Service is one post office I can mail something for $1.10 and the other it is $3 something...unbelievable. Always good to catch up with you! :)

pearshapedcrafting said...

What a fabulous post - apart from the post news that is! Our postage went up quite a lot last year, not that we het any better service! I love the joint effort the Mcfamily are making with the gardening - it looks good too! Ian's home schooling area looks to be well organised - I hope he gets on OK ! Pleased to see you got your dryer fixed too! Are you enjoying Scott and Bailey? We have found a way to get Unforgettable season 4 but we are on a time limit so a bit of binge watching required! We watched as far as we could of Yellowstone, not keen on the violence but the scenery....Oh My!!! I keep telling hubby not to worry about things that won't matter in 5 years time but I really should practice what I preach, one of my sons is in France where the levels are high, he is hardly having any contact with others, but he has to journey home soon through a large part of the country. I am allowed to worry about that surely?
Have a great week, Hugs, Chrisx

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Glad to see a new post (a bit late) as I have been keeping blog catch-ups mostly to weekends now. Nice setup for Liam and out grandkids also have desks for school work set-up in their rooms by their mom. Nice to see the family gardening projects too. Scott and Bailey is a new one for me as we are presently watching Foyle's War after finally catching Broadchurch. These older series are very enjoyable and take up the evening entertainment quite nicely. Glad the dryer repair has been completed.

Sorry to read about that postage hike, Rita, and I suspect that was the letter and surprise I mailed. The local post office did a boo boo by not letting me know ahead of time. Guess I too will refrain from sending future surprises to folks as I don't want them to have to pay. Glad to read that less news watching = feeling better and less stressed as it's a good formula.

Harvest Moon by Hand said...

Postage has gotten to be expensive. Sending treats and unexpected things in the mail was so fun. I'm not mailing as much either these days.

I hope that Ian enjoys learning from home. You all have done such a great job so far with teaching him so many different things.

The plantings look very nice.

The cars look great! The electric car looks like it would be fun to drive.