Sunday, August 1, 2010

I've been busy and busier....

I really wish there was some way I could transpose my thoughts (not all of them of course) directly to this blog without actually typing--I've been thinking about so many things I need to share with you all and I just haven't seemed to have time to actually follow through :-(

I'm not sure that any of this will be in any semblance of order, so if something seems chronologically out of whack, it's probably because I'm just spewing thoughts....

Anyhow.....I got a "new to me" car--to replace my little red Corolla that didn't make it through the deer encounter....I'm not sure if I told you or not, that the insurance company only gave me about $4000 for my car--it was a 2004, but it had 275,000 miles on it (from that darned long commute to the job that no longer exists), so they took about $3000 off for that high mileage.

So DH and I went car shopping.  Several times.  And I learned that it's really really hard to find used Toyotas.  And it's even harder to find used Toyotas that cost less than $5000.  Apparently, people tend to drive them until they drop, or until they hit deer.  So I went online and found a total of about three Corollas within a hundred miles that were in the right price range AND 2003 or newer.  It became obvious that I was going to have to "settle".  DH and I went to a nearby "big town" and went to pretty much every car lot there.  We test drove a couple of older Toyotas and a 2005 Kia Rio.  I liked it (the Kia), but I hadn't done any research on how reliable it is/was, so decided to stick to the Toyota plan until further notice.  It sounds like I made the right call there, based on what I could find online.

The next day, after finding a used car dealer that advertised several used (but older--sigh) Toyotas online, we drove to that place, about 120 miles away from home.  And drove about 10 Toyotas, from a 1991 to a 2002.  A lot of them were really junky.  Especially the "really old" ones.  But we wound up buying a baby blue 1997 Toyota Camry XLE, which is the top-of-the-line Camry.  Fully loaded, leather seats, power sunroof, etc.  Everything works except the dash light for the tachometer.  Rides like a limo.  The mechanic (who we didn't know but figured was better than nothing) we brought it to (on short notice) said he didn't see any obvious reasons why we shouldn't buy it.  So we/I did.  It's a lot bigger than my Corolla, which means that it'll get a lot worse gas mileage (and the 6 cylinder engine isn't going to help either) but I really want/need the reliability (hopefully) of a Toyota, because I'd rather spend a little extra consistently on gas than have huge unexpected repair bills every time I turn around.....anyhow, if you picture this car in baby blue, that's exactly what it looks like (I'd have taken a picture of the actual car, but it's dark out and I don't want to wait!)

I'm still really scared that it's gonna break down any minute.  The inside is so clean, I can't believe anyone ever drove it....and it's by far the most luxurious car I've ever owned.  I actually test drove it three times to make sure I wasn't being swayed by the luxury.  But compared to the other Toyotas I drove, even the 2002, it seemed a lot less worn (I hope!).  I'm glad that's over with.

One of the main reasons I haven't posted this past week is that we've been working on clearing out my mom's assisted living apartment.  It's been a lot more emotional than I anticipated.  Every time I've been over there I've ended up sobbing--even DH, who's "a man who's not supposed to cry" (according to him) broke down when he saw that they had taken her name off of the door.  I know it's been really hard on him, too.  But he's trying to be strong for me.  He's really been a help, although he's been somewhat stubborn about his ideas--one night he wanted to start moving furniture at 9:30pm, and when I said that we should wait until morning, he argued with me and sulked for the rest of the night...but he got up in the morning and moved furniture and it all worked out....anyhow....I'm not sure if we were supposed to have everything out today (7/31) or if it matters, but there are still a few boxes in the apartment and I still need to vacuum the floor and clean the oven...so I'm hoping nobody will care if I finish up on Sunday....it'll feel good to be done with that, too--then I can concentrate on just visiting with my mom.

And my mom's cat.  He's at our house right now, in DD's bedroom, because he's about 16 years old and I was worried that he might not adjust well to a house full of animals....he's been doing ok, I guess, eating and drinking....but.....today I decided to bring him to visit my mom in the nursing home, and I noticed that his meow had changed.  In my experience that is never a good thing.  I observed (and I may have mentioned this before) that his belly is very very large, but you can feel his bones.  It doesn't appear that he's jaundiced (which would explain the large belly [ascites

DD is still having a tough time at her residential treatment facility.  She's had to be physically restrained twice this past week, and she had a big tantrum in the therapist's office when the therapist informed her that due to her behavior, she would not be allowed to go off grounds with DH and I to shop or go out to eat.  And then there are her bio relatives, who, in the 9 years that DD has lived with us, despite our continued urging, have never called her to go out for ice cream, never called her to say hi, never called us to ask how she's doing....now that they've learned that DD is in this new setting, are demanding to visit her there, and accusing us of "keeping her from them".  Argh.  I need to keep biting my tongue.  The therapist says DD is too unstable at the moment to have visits from bio family members.  So I've been telling them to call the therapist.  But it's still stressful!

So that's pretty much what I remember about what's been going on this past week or two--oh--and I have a job interview on Aug. 9.  Oh--and did I tell you (probably not) that I found out that because my job went overseas I could go to school for whatever I want (as long as it's in demand) including a Masters degree if I wanted to and they would continue to pay me unemployment for the entire time I was in school????  I'm kind of leaning towards getting some sort of computer certification that would result in a better job (hopefully).  If DH keeps working (and I know that's a big "if"), it would be doable.  So if I were to take something that required one year of schooling at a local Vo-Tech, and if DH could hold out for a year or so, then when I got done with school, even if DH couldn't keep working, I could go back to making similar money to what I was making at my corporate job before I got laid off.  Some things to think about, for sure!


Anonymous said...

My job went overseas and I was able to do that. I am going to graduate this year and am going into the medical field. I wanted to go into something that was going to be more stable and I love it. I have a degree in computers but there are no jobs here in it. You have a lot on your plate, but if you can take advantage of it, do it! It is the best thing I have ever done.

perphila said...

When my car was hit and smashed a while back I had been hoping for more from the insurance company as well. I got close to $4000 but not quite but it was just shy ($500) of what I needed for the one I have now. I was very lucky and the one I have now is a year newer than my old one. Of course it's still a 2000 so I am scared to death what might happen if it goes. I hope your purchase works out. It looks nice...:)

It's not so bad to cry now about cleaning your mom's place. I had to clean out my dad's when he passed away I just focused on task and cried much more later. I was pregnant with Sofie and I had help at the time. Still, you have seeing your mom to look forward to and I am sure you will feel better getting all that emotion out.

School sounds like a great idea. You could start and hope for the best. If DH has issues down the road you I know will deal with it as it comes. It's good to think of you and your needs as well. I am SO trying to work on that myself...:)

Anonymous said...

My husband and I have owner four Camrys between us before we "moved up" to a Mercedes (me) and a BMW (him). Camrys are good, reliable cars and if you change the oil every 3,000 miles and keep up with the recommended maintenance as outlined in the owner's manual you shouldn't have any trouble.
As for the job training, go for it! IT jobs are in demand right now, that or nursing would be a good option for you, money-wise.
Oh, and about the cat? I wouldn't say anything to your mom unless she asks and then I'd tell her the truth. It's not your fault that the cat is sick. You took good care of him and there were no other options, other than to leave him at a kennel. Your mother won't blame you, although she might get a bit weepy at losing him. The dog's death could have been a coincidence but it was probably your DH's fault for turning him loose.