It's Saturday! No word from LawnWoman yet, which to be honest is the story of my life at this point. I am not worried about it. It will get done by someone else or I will do it myself at some point in the next 11 days.
But since I'm ostensibly not doing it now, I am using the time for something I can't hire someone else to do: decluttering and organizing my house. I also plan to clean, which I could hire someone else to do, but honestly the work I care about is decluttering and organizing and that's the hard part. Once I've done that, I might as well do the comparatively easy vacuuming and mopping and stuff. I started last night, by putting away some of the stuff that got moved when the ceiling collapsed last summer (yes, over a year ago) and never got put back. In the process, I found Lut's old phone. \o_ Lut hates his new phone, so I may see if I can get T-Mobile to give me an adapter for the new phone SIM card so I can fit it in his old phone.
Today, when Lut went back to bed after breakfast, I drove back home and started cleaning out his closet. The problem we have right now is that our stuff has overflowed all of our storage places for stuff, so I can't put away the stuff that's clogging up my rooms without first cleaning out drawers and suchlike. I also almost certainly need to replace my bed, as it's too tall for Lut to get into and out of comfortably. This sucks on multiple levels. First, my bed is a California king waterbed frame with a foam mattress stuffed into it. It's on a drawer pedestal and has a ginormous headboard for EVEN MOAR storage space. Getting a shorter bed means losing dozens of cubic feet of storage space. And, see aforementioned "I do not have enough storage space NOW." I need to get rid of stuff. Plus I need to figure out how to get rid of the bed, because just getting it disassembled and out the door is a two-man job, and it's not like trash collection is going to take it. Probably I should try freecycle or Craigslist or something. -_-
Anyway, Lut's closet held mostly electronics and empty boxes. Oh, he has clothes in there too, but it's a huge closet (like eight feet long and maybe three feet deep) and all of the clothes he actually wears are in a dresser.
The electronics were:
- Mice and trackballs
- Gaming controllers he hasn't used in years (some of which he never used much: he's gotten at least three different things that amount to "keyboard for one-handed use" and he's never used any of them for more than a few months.)
- Approximately two hundred cables, mostly for purposes I can't identify. Some were old power cables
- Surge protector strips
- A battery backup
- A CRT monitor
- A defunct printer
- Miscellaneous old computer parts: harddrives, fans, a motherboard, a CD ROM or DVD drive, not sure which
Most of the small stuff I packed back into two boxes and returned to the closet. It would make sense to throw it out, or at least to throw out 95% of it. Keeping spare network cables and power cords: fine. Keeping cords for peripherals we don't own and that don't fit to any computers we do: why. But I felt kind of bad about throwing away Lut's stuff and this doesn't take up a lot of space.
I did throw out all the empty boxes, though. Seriously, he just kept boxes for every electronics thing we ever got. There were three monitor boxes in his closet and a dozen or so for different internal computer parts.
The CRT monitor, though, I really did not want to keep. It is huge and it doesn't pack well: I can't put things on top of it and it's so heavy I don't want it on top of boxes. Moreover, it was one of THREE CRT monitors that we haven't used in 4+ years. Yes, I suspect it still works. I am also pretty sure we're never plugging it in again. Lut and I both have dual monitor set ups. We have a spare already on the desktop if anything happens to one of them.
Anyway, Lut has always been like "why shouldn't we keep the spare old monitors" and I've always been like "because they take up SO MUCH SPACE" and he's not here to argue with me so I decided to get rid of them.
Of course, you can't just put monitors on the curb for the garbage collectors to take. But I have a car now! I used Google to find an electronics center that was open and called them to verify that I could in fact show up and make my old electronics their problem now. They charged 35 cents a pound for TVs & monitors, and 20 cents a pound for scanners & printers. Everything else is free to drop off. (You can even take a tax deduction for other stuff, the place is a nonprofit).
So I loaded up my car with ALL THE WORTHLESS ELECTRONICS. My two scanners that I haven't had drivers for in 7 years (cry). The printer. The TV set that has been unused in the basement since we moved in 14 years ago. Two CRT monitors. One dead flat screen monitor. A broken lamp and two broken fans. An empty computer case. I almost took my two dead weed whackers, but I didn't want to spend the time to (a) dig them out of my garage, which is chock-full of a friend's stuff and (b) verify that I didn't confuse the dead weed whackers with the one that works.
I also tried to give them the pile of dead batteries from the basement, but alas, they don't take batteries.
Technically, this is not actually all of the junk electronics in my house. We still have three old desktop computers and one CRT monitor, for instance. We still have a TV set we haven't used since 2004 and a VCR we haven't used in even longer. Probably some other stuff, too. But it made a substantial dent in the pile.
My strangest find in the closet was Lut's duffel bag. It was almost empty, except for the following: one messenger bag, a paperback book, a cardigan, a box of tissues, and a mostly-empty box of tea bags, and a bunch of instant oatmeal packets. One of the packets had come open and spilled oatmeal all over the bag.
This utterly mystified me at first: why would anyone put a bunch of oatmeal packets in a duffel bag and then put the whole thing in an office closet?
But I figured it out! This must be the bag Lut packed when he left his last job. He would've kept the tea and oatmeal at his desk at work, for drinks and breakfast if he ran late. Then he never got around to unpacking it when he brought it home, and one of us got sick of it being in the way in the living room and stuffed it in the closet.
After getting rid of the electronics (141 pounds of stuff I was charged for, and probably another 60 of stuff that was free) I went back to see Lut for lunch, and hung out at the nursing facility until after supper. Lut mostly sleeps or rests in between meals; he has no energy. :| He was able to stay awake for an episode of Defenders, so that was nice. Apart from that, I got some proofreading in. After dinner, I went home. I didn't really want to clean any more, but I decided to take care of the little remaining clutter on the floor of the front hall, which consisted of a desktop bookcase and its contents. It all needed to be dusted, but I got it cleaned up and stowed back on top of the table we use as a computer desk.
Oh, and I did four loads of laundry: one of my clothes and Lut's, and three for bedding. And also the duffel bag I found in Lut's closet, to get rid of the oatmeal dust I couldn't pour out. My bed is clean! \o/
While I was cleaning, I got a text from LawnWoman that she wasn't going to be able to make it today but she would be out tomorrow THIS TIME FOR SURE. XD
I am honestly much less pissy about LawnWoman because even though the other services also promised things they didn't deliver AT LEAST SHE TALKS TO ME. I will give so much slack to people who communicate with me via text or email, y'all. SO MUCH.
There will come a point where I will have to tell her I can't keep waiting, obv., but I can probably let that slide until I finish housecleaning. -_-
On Wednesday night, I'd ordered a Surface 3, for a few reasons:
- I like having a laptop of my own, but I'd also like Lut to have a laptop, especially if I go to ProgPower. He's rarely alert and competent enough to use one, but he'd probably be able to at some point if I'm away for four straight days.
- I'd like to have a drawing tablet
- The Surface will be compatible with the art software I already own
- Micah used a Surface 3 for a year or so and said it worked pretty well as a drawing device
- Since the Surface 3 is a couple of years old now, it's pretty cheap.
I have Amazon Prime, but I paid for shipping because Amazon Prime would get it to me on 9/5 and $14 would get it to me on 9/1. I figured this way I'd have time to see how adequate it was as a laptop replacement. Bear in mind that my present laptop is also two or three years old, so I don't think I need the latest and greatest. My main concern is that I didn't like the Surface keyboard the one time I used one, several years ago. But that was years ago.
Along with the Surface 3, I ordered a case, a keyboard, and a stylus. On Thursday, Amazon told me that the case, keyboard, and stylus had shipped and would arrive on Friday.
Yeah, those are not gonna be a whole lot of use without the tablet.
Friday morning, Amazon told me they'd shipped the Surface 3 and it would arrive on 9/2. Okay, that's a little disappointing but not terrible.
Friday night, the peripherals still hadn't arrived. Well, I didn't need them before the tablet got here anyway.
When I got home Saturday night, I had a box from Amazon!
Just one box. It was a big box?
It had Surface 3! And also the shoes I'd ordered for Lut, which weren't supposed to get here until Tuesday. Well. Okay?
So I plugged in the Surface 3, which I am pleased to see uses a mini-USB cable just like my phone. I spent an hour or so getting it set up and updated and loading ArtRage and Clip Studio on it. Neither ArtRage nor Clip Studio works without a stylus. ArtRage almost works? I can kind of fingerpaint, but it treats "picking up finger and putting it back down elsewhere" as "you want to draw a straight line between those two points right?" Not so much. Clip Studio doesn't even try: it treats finger movements as "you want to drag the position of the canvas around" regardless of what tool I have selected.
So the only thing I've done with it so far is use it for reading in bed, instead of reading with my phone. It works pretty well as a proofreading device. I wouldn't want to type on its virtual keyboard, but I can peck out corrections as necessary, and unlike with my phone, it doesn't have any trouble with Google Docs.
My messenger bag has a little padded pocket which, it turns out, is a tablet pocket. The Surface fits it exactly. I am pretty sure once I get the case & keyboard, it won't fit. But if I keep the Surface to use as a laptop, I'll use a smaller bag and stop carrying the laptop in its messenger bag. Conveniently, I came across not one but THREE small messenger bags in Lut's closet. I suspect one of them will work very nicely for the Surface.
I still haven't addressed my "I need a new phone" issue. I am leaning more towards getting an older phone now, though. A refurb Galaxy S7 is less than half what a Galaxy S8 costs, for example, and it's still going to be a hundred times more powerful than my Galaxy S-We-Didn't-Need-Numbers-Yet.
This morning I really didn't feel like cleaning any more, so I decided to go to Panera, where mostly I'm just writing about what I did yesterday. I'm also In a bit, I will head off to the nursing facility to see Lut. I want to give my Surface some more time to charge; I thought I had it charging while I typed this but whoops. It'd come unplugged from the wall.
Also, maybe I can get enough words written to finish one of the boss mobs I need in 4thewords.
Anyway, this is my vacation so far. I have played some Tricky Towers in the evening for fun. Tricky Towers has a pretty small playerbase so its matchmaking only works in the evening, which has the side benefit of meaning I can't fritter away my mornings on it.
But yeah, it's mostly decluttering, cleaning, visiting Lut, and proofreading. Yes, this is my idea of a vacation, and yes, I am very glad to be doing it instead of going to work. Also: yes, I am an adult.
There was a time when I questioned whether or not I really was grown-up, but nope. I am. I am doing all the adulting. SO MUCH ADULTING. Weeks and weeks of adulting. I used to think that I would be really bad at caretaking, if I ever had to take care of my parents when they got older. It's kind of nice to know that I am okay at it instead. Not perfect. But okay.