Only ten days to go before we leave on our Mystery Vacation™! All will be revealed!
The mystery with my Social Security retirement continues as well. Last week I called the Social Security national toll-free number again to see if I could find out anything about the status of my account, but after finally getting through their awful voice-activated menu was told that the wait for an agent would be one hour and fifteen minutes! I was just about to hang up when an agent in Honolulu picked up and asked if he could help. I explained that I had applied for benefits last October and after one very difficult phone conversation with the agent in Salinas and also talking with our local office I still had heard nothing from Social Security and had no idea what was going on. He looked into my file and seemed very, very puzzled that I was not already receiving benefits as there was nothing in my account to indicate why they hadn’t started. “Do you have your copy of the letter sent on February 5?” he asked. I told him I have never received any mail from Social Security. He offered to print the letter off again for me; I received it just two days later. Where the first letter went, or if it was ever actually sent, is unknown. The February 5 letter is a confirmation of my October application, and states that benefits will begin in January. Everything else in the letter is correct as well so who knows what is causing the holdup. If there is no direct deposit again this month, which I am not counting on at this point, I will head back down to our local office once again to see if I can get an explanation. I’m also going to contact one of our Senators and ask if they will look into it. All I know for certain right now is that when they do eventually start paying, the first check is going to be rather large, because they will owe back to January.
On a brighter note, WenYu introduced me to the Neko Atsume (Cat Collection) game week before last and I am now totally addicted. I must check it ten times a day to see which cats have come to visit and play with the toys I’ve bought them.
Otherwise, this afternoon I am:
- Reading: I’m still reading Live By Night by Dennis Lehane, although the central character in this book was not a favorite in the last book and nearly half-way through this one that still hasn’t changed. Lehane’s writing is so good though which is what keeps me going. I’m also still working my way through Stick Figure by Lori Gotlieb. It’s definitely a flashback in some ways to my interaction with dieting and diet advice when I was that age, but I thankfully never got as obsessive as the author did (and develop anorexia nervosa). Finally, I’m just finishing up Mary Bartnikowski’s book, Everyday Naked, and have loved every word!
- Listening to: We’ve been enjoying a very quiet morning here. The girls slept in fairly late, and no one’s really been out doing anything outside, like mowing their lawns, etc. So, just birds singing and a few chickens making some noise, but otherwise it’s very peaceful around here.
- Watching: Tonight WenYu and I will settle in for the last episode of Downton Abbey. SOB!! It will be greatly missed, and a long time before something else comes along to match it. Brett and I also started watching Bates Motel last week and are a few episodes into it. It’s pretty intense, but so far so good.
- Cooking/baking: Brett made some banana-coconut waffles for breakfast (I had leftover vegan chili in a tortilla). We were supposed to have kalua pork, etc. for dinner tonight, but menu-wise things have gotten pushed back so we’re having curry stuffed peppers tonight along with some cucumber. Kalua pork will be tomorrow. I have been craving pie – maybe later this week.
- Happy I accomplished this past week: I finished up another month of vegan eating, but this month I’m adding back in fish and honey to what I eat, and I may have an occasional egg as well. I also rode the exercise bicycle three times every day last week, racking up nearly 75 miles and over 2200 calories burned. Finally, the girls and I got out for a long-postponed but much-needed shopping trip yesterday, and found what we were looking for at prices we could live with.
- Thinking of good things that happened last week: We put a total of $17.73 in the change/$1 bill jar this last week, which kind of surprised us. All the little stuff adds up though. WenYu and YaYu both needed new purses (WenYu’s $1 yard sale bag from four years ago is barely hanging on), so we “shopped” the Zappos site and found two they liked for only $15 each. I had a $30 coupon from Zappos, and because they don’t charge for shipping the purses were free! I also had a lovely conversation with Meiling on Friday – she calls once a week to chat – and we texted back and forth a few times as well. I miss her so much, but love how she is maturing and blossoming at college. The whole week was actually quite relaxing – I love being retired!
- Looking forward to next week: I’m heading up to the north shore tomorrow for lunch in Hanalei and some pool time with good friend Joy – we had to postpone from last week because of the weather. On Thursday morning I’m getting together with Mary B. and we’re heading over to the Hindu monastery for an instructional photo session.
- Grateful for: I’m very thankful that the Girl Scouts are still making Thin Mints and that they are vegan!!
- Bonus question: What are your favorite clothing stores? J. Jill is where most of my clothes come from. These days I shop from the catalog, but back in Portland I enjoyed visiting their stores as well (I only bought from the sale rack). I love the way J. Jill’s clothes fit, and the quality is excellent. I never pay full price for anything from J. Jill either. Everything they sell eventually goes on sale, so I always wait until it’s marked down (and these days can usually find a free shipping coupon to add on as well). Back in Portland I also enjoying shopping at Goodwill, and miss having a store here. I all (very) occasionally buy basics from L.L. Bean and Garnet Hill.
How is your Sunday afternoon going? What have you been up to? What good things happened for you?