Retirement is a week filled with Saturdays and Sundays interrupted only occasionally by a holiday.

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Monday, March 30, 2009

Money In Our Pocket

If you take a look at my vacation countdown timer on my sidebar, you'll see that our Baltic cruise is fast approaching. This week we make our final payment and, minus our $900 deposit in October, it's one very large $$$ amount. I've been fretting over it for some time now (what with the economy the way it is and our investments significantly down) but we are determined to make the trip and enjoy every moment of it.

One of the things I've been doing to ease my mind is monitoring the cruise line's website to see what's been happening with our cruise fare. Cruise lines are hurting big time and I have been reading message boards where the hot topic seems to be the falling cruise prices. Sure enough, today I discovered that our cabin category price was reduced by $620 per person. I called our travel agent who, in turn, called the cruise line. The result is that each of the five of us is having our final payment reduced by that amount. For the two of us, that means a savings of $1,240 which is nothing to sneeze at.

Is this the end of it? Heck no! I'm guessing that fares will continue to drop as the cruise lines struggle to fill up their ships with guests this summer. Hopefully we'll see more savings even after making the final payment and, you can be sure, I'll be watching our cruise line's website with a great deal of interest.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

In My Humble Opinion...

Today Rick and I had one of our daytime movie dates. As usual, I let him choose the film and this time it was "The Watchmen" based on the graphic novel of the same name.

I'm afraid to say I absolutely did not "get" this movie. Oh, I understood the storyline, the iconic references, the themes, the images. It's just that I found the film excessively long (nearly 3 hours), far too graphically violent for my tastes, and the storyline disjointed...moving chaotically between the present and the past over and over.

Now I know there is a large legion of fans of the novel who have adored this film adaptation and I'm happy their expectations have been met. For me, however, this was definitely the wrong choice! Oh well, at least I get to choose the next film we see.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Survey Says...

While visiting Are We There Yet? today, I came across this fun meme that Linda did and thought it would be nice to do on a lazy Saturday so now let's play Family Feud - the Blog Version.

1. Name something you use in the shower: Razor
2. Name a product for men: Old Spice Aftershave
3. Name something people hate to find on their windshields: Advertisements stuck under the windshield wiper
4. Name something a man might buy before a date: Um, let's just call it "protection."
5. What is another word for blemish: Pimple
6. Something you cook in the microwave: Popcorn
7. Name a piece of furniture people need help moving: Refrigerator
8 Name a reason a younger man might like an older woman: Experience
9. Name something a dog does that embarrasses its owner: Sniffs a visitor's private parts
10.. Name a kind of test you cannot study for: Mammogram
11. Name something a boy scout gets a badge for: Knot Tying
12 Name a phrase with the word home in it. "There's no place like home."
13. Name a sport where players lose teeth: Rugby
14. Name something a teacher can do to ruin a student's day: Give a surprise quiz
15. What is a way you can tell someone has been crying: Red, runny nose
16. Name a bird you wouldn't want to eat: California Condor
17. Name something someone would wear with a hole in it: Sock
18. Name something that gets smaller the more you use it: Pencil

If you want to play along, copy and paste the questions to a new post, erase my answers, and fill in your own answers. Remember, you can't use the same answer as the person whose post you read (that would be me) and, if my answers don't make much sense, it's because the person before me had the good ones and I was stuck thinking of acceptable substitutes!

If you want to tag 5 people, that's great. I'm not going to tag anyone but please let me know if you decide to play along so I can come by and check out your answers. Happy Weekend!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Wearing of the Green's already St. Patrick's Day; in a few days, it will be Spring. Yep, time really does fly by.

Today is also "Library Ladies Who Do Lunch" Day. We missed our lunch in February so we'll have lots to catch up on. I've been searching through my closet this morning trying to find something that's green. I originally planned on wearing a shirt I have but it's long sleeved and it's supposed to be close to 80 degrees today. I am wearing my green-framed glasses today (I nearly forgot I had them) so I guess that will save me from the traditional pinch.

Last night I played computer tech on the phone most of the evening. First I had to help my sister who was having trouble downloading songs from the iTunes website. Now I know most computer geeks don't read manuals and help screens but I'm a big believer in researching when help is needed. Sure enough, I came across a solution to the problem when a I read a message board reply which came up when I was Googling. Then I tried to help a friend with her computer problems when an attachment I had sent her wouldn't display. In turns out, she never set-up her Word program when it was loaded so she has to find that long ID key number from the original box to start the process.

If you noticed the countdown timer on the sidebar, we are getting closer and closer to our Baltic cruise. On Saturday, we met with the couple we're traveling with to do an initial selection of the excursions we want to do in the various port cities. Now we're trying to arrange a meeting with our friend who will be going with us so we can make the final decisions and purchase the excursions on the cruiseline website. Ka-ching, ka-ching...

Hope everyone has a happy and pinch-free St. Patrick's Day!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Oops...I Did What?!?!?

I feel like such a dolt right now. I just noticed that we seem to be missing one of the two wall chargers that came with our cell phones and which normally sit on the bookshelf with our TV. And I also discovered that, instead of having two Bluetooth headset chargers, we somehow have three.

A few months ago, I purchased a new Bluetooth headset and had to exchange it for a new one three times when they kept dying after only a few weeks. Apparently, when I packed up one of the headsets with its accessories, I must have accidently packed my cell phone charger instead of the Bluetooth one. Damn!

Thankfully Rick and I have the same phone model so we can, in theory, get along with just the one phone charger. Still...there are times we need to charge our phones at the same time and what happens when one of us goes out of town without the other? Who gets custody of the one charger?

Like I said...I feel like such a dolt.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

A Word to the Wise...

Okay...I've learned my laptop lesson Wanna know what it is? In plain English...never let your laptop sit in its case for months on end without taking it out, turning it on and letting the darn thing do its updating thing.

This morning, in preparation for syncing my new iPod Touch, I took out my much ignored laptop, turned it on and then went through hours of agonizing grief trying to get all 40 updates (yes, 40) to load properly.

...and then, when I finally managed to get most of the updates installed properly, I made the ridiculous decision to try and load Vista's Service Pack 1 (which failed when I tried in January). Yes, I finally got it to install fully and now Silver Wonder seems to be working OK but not without a whole lot of grief.

...and then, when I went to load iTunes on the laptop before syncing the iPod, of course that didn't go quite as planned...but it finally got done.

...and then I tried syncing the iPod and that didn't go quite as planned...but it finally got done.

...and then I tried to load one free Games app as a first step and that didn't go quite as planned...but it finally got done.

...and, at that point, I unplugged the iPod, turned it off, turned off the laptop and left it all in a heap on the dining room table.

After all...tomorrow is another day.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Another Year Older...Finally

My family may be slow but eventually we take care of business. Thankfully everyone was healthy this weekend so we finally got together to celebrate my birthday on Sunday evening...which officially made me a year older. It's become a tradition to go to an Italian restaurant in my sister's neighborhood and my cousin Ina was able to join us as well. We all had a great time and the food and service, as always, was terrific.

During dinner, Lynn took out her new I-Pod Touch and was showing us all the great free apps she was able to download. I could see Hubby making eye contact with her and I knew I was to be the recipient of one as a belated gift. Sure enough, yesterday while out for lunch with Mom and Rick, he presented me with a birthday gift bag. Inside was my brand new I-Pod Touch!

This is my very first I-Pod and, with every electronic "toy," there's a learning curve. It's still in its sealed box waiting for me to open it up and charge it. Then it will be time to go through my huge CD collection and start selecting songs to sync. much work...