We’ve Gone Green!

Under my desk – one of his favorite spots when I’m working!

I guess our county is in the green phase of reopening now. The dog park is open, although both times I have gone there haven’t been any dogs Baxter could play with.

Tuesday after I got the stitches out from my dental implant, I treated myself to lunch at a Mexican restaurant. It was nice to sit there and enjoy food I didn’t have to cook that was still hot. Takeout is nice but it has its limitations.

I don’t plan to go back to church yet. I will continue viewing the online services, which I had been doing off and on even before the pandemic. I prefer that method anyway!

I am going to get my hair cut on Thursday. It’s halfway down my back and desperately needs a few inches off. Plus she will thin it out some and taper it around my face. I want to look somewhat presentable when I have to do some staff training next month.

Speaking of work, I have been very busy there. We are adding new health and safety products to the website, plus I’m helping test the new system we are switching to later this year. And my boss has also asked me to train the sales staff on how to use the new system, so I’m trying to prepare for that as well.

On the Baxter front, we are now working with a dog trainer. She is coming once a week and plans to help us with the various issues we have been having. Lately it seems like potty training has regressed a bit so we are going back to a more routine schedule for taking him out. I really hope we can get this under control!

He was so cute the other night though. I took him out around 9pm and he was fascinated by the lightning bugs. He really wanted to catch one!

Moving to Yellow (May 31st Update)

I don’t have much to report this week.

I had a very productive week at work. Splitting my time between new product entry and new system testing breaks up the monotony of doing one thing all the time.

Michael finished up his assignments for the fourth quarter, so all that is left is to return his library books and pay his fines, which are less than $1.00 in total.  That will be on Wednesday.

Our county is now in the yellow zone, which means the stay at home order is lifted and some businesses can reopen while following social distancing guidelines. People are encouraged to continue working from home if they can and are supposed to limit gatherings to 25 people.

Making Progress (May 24th Update)

I switched from part-time to full-time hours this week.  In addition to entering new products for our website, I am also needed to test the new computer system we will be switching to later this year.  I had definitely gotten used to my lazy afternoons reading and relaxing with Baxter, so this week was an abrupt change to my system!  I am very glad to have full-time work, though, especially with Joe’s job ending in just a few weeks.

Michael has one more week to finish up his school assignments. School was originally supposed to end the first Friday in June, but I’m not sure now if he will be doing anything that last week. I’m waiting to hear when we can return his library books. His case manager did tell me he can just hold onto his laptop for next year.

Baxter’s first birthday is coming up in just over two weeks, so I purchased a couple of birthday presents for him and got the supplies I needed to make a dog-friendly cake. He has been making a bit of trouble lately, pulling insulation out of a hole in our wall and somehow even detaching a couple of pieces of trim from the wall as well. I’m hoping Joe can get those all fixed soon so Baxter can’t bother them anymore. Here’s a picture of him being good, lol!

The Governor announced Friday that our county would move from red to yellow on May 29th. I don’t think much will change for us though. The only thing I’m hopeful for is that they will open the dog park, but I’m not sure if they will.

Some Big Changes (May 17th Update)


After several weeks of things being the same on end, we have had a couple of big changes occur.

Joe found out on Monday that his job is ending in July. His company has been bought out, and the new owner is shutting down his entire facility. It was a surprise, for sure, but I’m trusting that God will provide. We have survived my work getting cut in half, and we can survive this.

In other news, we are getting our house re-sided. There was some major wind damage a few weeks ago and after weighing our options we decided to go ahead with it. Thankfully the insurance company is covering the damaged areas. We chose a pretty light gray to replace the white that we had before.

Everything else is pretty much the same. I might be going back to full time hours soon because we need to restart testing on our new system, but I haven’t been given a date for that yet.

Our county is still in the red zone, which means we are still under a stay-at-home order. No word yet on when we will move to the yellow phase of reopening.

Happy Mother’s Day! (May 10th Update)

happy mothers day card beside pen macaroons flowers and box near coffee cup with saucer
Photo by Giftpundits.com on Pexels.com

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there. Whether you are a biological mother, adoptive mother, stepmother, foster mom or a mom in spirit, I pray you will be blessed today.

There’s not too much in the way of an update on the COVID-19 situation. Governor Wolf has extended the stay at home order until June 4th, although certain counties have moved into what he is calling the yellow phase of reopening. Even there, people are still asked to wear masks and practice social distancing (staying 6′ apart). Our county still has too many cases to move out of the red zone.

I’m still working part-time and collecting partial unemployment for the reduced hours. Joe is still going to work everyday, and Michael is still doing school online. Michael had a bit of frustration on Friday when he found out that he had missed some assignments because they weren’t showing up where he thought they were supposed to. He met with the autistic support teacher over Zoom, and she helped him find everything and figure out what needed to be done.

My support group that has been using a conference call line since the lockdown is going to switch to Zoom this coming week. Although I have enjoyed the conference calls, it will be nice to see everyone’s faces again. This is also the last week for my Zoom Bible study on Ruth. That has been a bit different than I expected due to the fact that the whole session is only half an hour and we watch a short video each week, so there isn’t much time to really share our thoughts on what we have studied. I’m glad there were only a few participants, as that made it easier to get to know people and to feel comfortable speaking in the group.

I got a new desk pad/mouse mat today – Joe had recommended I get one and I’m glad I did – it’s very pretty!


So that’s my update for this week. I hope everyone is staying safe and has a good Mother’s Day!

How Are We Coping? (May 3rd Update)


For this week’s update, I thought I would talk about how each of us is coping with the lockdown.

I am settling in to staying at home fairly well now.  For a few weeks, I was having a lot of trouble relaxing enough to read or watch shows much, but now I am doing both of those things more.  I am working in the mornings and then am on call for the afternoon to enter products if needed.  I make the occasional trip out to the grocery store or pharmacy.  When I can get a grocery delivery or pickup slot, I take it – this has been about every two weeks, so I am trying to order enough food to last that amount of time.  I was doing well at meal planning at the beginning of the lockdown, but it has been getting harder and harder to figure out what to make.

Michael has been experiencing some frustration with online learning.  His laptop keeps crashing, especially the internet browser, and it is really causing some stress.  I don’t think the assignments are too difficult; it mainly seems related to technology issues.  He also misses his social skills group and D&D games, although he is still seeing his dad at the usual times.

Joe doesn’t seem too bothered by the whole situation.  He still goes to work as normal, although there are extra safety measures in place there, such as temperature checks, wearing gloves and masks, and additional cleaning routines.  In the evenings, he plays his online PC video games and watches a little YouTube.

Baxter is definitely missing his trips to the dog park.  He whines to go out a lot more and is begging a lot at mealtime.  He also gets overexcited sometimes when he is playing and has a hard time settling down.  Joe has been taking him on walks after work, and I have been occasionally taking him to an open park in another township that has a fenced in tennis court where he can run for a while.  It’s not the same as getting to run and play with other dogs, though.

Peanut Butter seems pretty much the same.  The dog is bothering him a bit more than usual, but he mostly hangs out in our bedroom or up on the cat tree, so life is fairly normal for him.

So that’s the update for this week.  How are you doing with everything?


April 26th Update


Monday – I was so productive today. I’m not sure where all the energy came from, but I got a lot done. I answered a bunch of emails, updated my budget in YNAB, sent family tree updates and photos to my aunt, renewed our car’s registration, and even mailed two ebay items that had sold on Saturday. Also, my new office chair arrived today, and Joe put it together for me when he got home from work. I love it!

Tuesday – Another pretty good day. Worked a bit extra in the afternoon to get some new products entered in the system and then had my first experience with a telehealth appointment. Michael met with his psychiatric nurse practitioner. It was short and sweet, just checking in on how he is handling the lockdown and making sure his meds are all good.

Baxter has learned how to open the closet door in the bedroom and keeps getting out slippers and other shoes to chew on. I asked Joe about putting a latch on the door, so hopefully he will be able to figure out a solution!

Wednesday – I am struggling with the Bible study on Ruth that I am part of. We get an email each morning with a few verses to read and some questions to answer, but I find that the questions seem very subjective. Many of them ask me to discern what the people were thinking or feeling, which is definitely not a strong suit of mine due to the way my Aspie brain works. This all makes me nervous for the Zoom call tomorrow evening, wondering what I will have to contribute to the discussion. This is besides my normal anxiety surrounding a group social interaction.

Thursday – My Bible study meeting went well. Just like I do with my support group, I prayed beforehand that God would give me something to share that would fit in with the topic of the meeting, and I was able to share something appropriate to the discussion.

On the book front, a title I have been waiting for from the online library app came through, plus my mom sent me a book that had a really long wait time online. So I am currently reading Golden in Death by J.D. Robb and Eye Spy by Mercedes Lackey.

Friday – Today Michael and I had a phone meeting with OVR (Office of Vocational Rehabilitation) to talk about his needs and interests. They will get info from his psychiatrist and psychologist to determine eligibility and then we will go from there. One of the things they will pay for is an evaluation by an occupational therapist to see if Michael is ready to learn to drive. He does want to learn but boy am I nervous about the idea. I’m open to hearing what a professional has to say about it though.

Worked a few extra hours today to get a bunch of new products in the system. Not sure yet if I’m supposed to just claim the additional time or work less on Monday and Tuesday.

Saturday – I ordered a new face mask today. The ones I got originally were just white, and they are kind of boring. So I found a pretty blue one and ordered it.

blue face mask

I also attended the first of three free workshops on creating your dream budget hosted by Nick True from Mapped Out Money. He is a YNAB guru with a great YouTube channel and a new podcast that I enjoy. I got some great ideas today and am looking forward to the next two sessions.

Sunday – plans for today are to attend church online and make Parmesan Drumsticks for lunch. Plus spend some more time reading my books.

The stay at home order has been extended to May 8th, with a progressive lifting after that for certain regions and businesses. I haven’t been out anywhere this week, although I do need to make a trip to the pharmacy.

I hope you all are staying safe and healthy. God bless!