Oh, what a day! :-D

How the day was going to go was a bit up in the air, to be decided after we picked up our van.  It ended up being a much longer day, but we got the bulk of our monthly shop in, after all.

In order to get the van home, my younger daughter and husband had to come along.  Now, my mother’s car isn’t a compact car, by any means, but my husband tops 6 ft.  Even with the seat back as far as it could go, he had to fold himself in.  He was basically wearing the car!!  Then my daughter squeezed in behind him, because that was the side that was clear.  Not sure what my mother has behind the driver’s seat, but none of us want to go into her stuff, so it was easier that way.

When our last van died, I made a point of replacing it with something that was suitable for my husband’s mobility and pain issues.  Today, we all really appreciated the space we have in the van!  I don’t know that I’d ever be comfortable driving a car anymore.  Not just for the roominess for people, as we could certainly find something roomier than my mother’s, but for the many other things we are able to do because of the space available in our van.

When I got to the garage, I had a chance to talk to the guy behind the counter as he walked me through what work was done.  I will have to bring it back in a few days to get the wheel they took of, torqued.  I remembered to ask him if he was the owner of the place, and he was. I then made sure to shake his hand and thank him for trying to take such good care of my mother.  Who is my mother, he asked.  I told him.

Oh, he said, his eyes going wide.  We talked for a bit, and he asked about her car and whether the other garage was able to get a mystery electrical problem fixed, which they eventually did.  He was happy to hear that.  Just from something he said in passing, it seems my mother had made quite a scene there, over their having trouble tracking down the source of her car’s problems.  😦  I mentioned that we were taking her car to the farm for storage, and she wasn’t going to be driving anymore.  He was very happy to hear that.  My mother should not have been driving at all.  The last accident she was in, this summer, was basically her going into drive instead of reverse, then panicking.  He was the one who replaced her tire after that incident.  She wasn’t going to even tell us about it, but my brother found out about it from the garage, so she finally admitted what happened.  Even then, we had to go to Google Maps, street view, to figure out what she was vaguely alluding to.  Once we worked it out, we realized just how much worse it was than she had made it out to be.

I will happily go out of my way to drive her wherever she needs, for her own safety, and that of everyone else on the road!

Once the van was paid for and reclaimed, I made a quick call to my mother to let her know we would be over in a few minutes.  My younger daughter has picked up a cold, though, and she suggested it wouldn’t be a good idea for her to come in.  Post-surgery, my mother would be immunity compromised, and there are others living in the same building that would also be at higher risk.  I’m glad she thought of that, because it had escaped my mind completely.  Unfortunately, when I let my mother know this, she became angry, accused me a lying, and said that I was keeping her granddaughters away from her.  ?!?!  Also, I am apparently keeping them tied to me (I think because they are still living with us, instead of moving out on their own?  Which they chose to do, so they could help take care of their father, and in moving out here, to help take care of the farm.)

That really threw me for a loop.

When I the girls and I talked about this later, their response was, what does she care?  She doesn’t even like us!


So I was a bit trepidatious about going in, yet when I got there, she was just fine.  She had some things for me to do for her, like throwing out her garbage.  I had thought my sister would be there, but she’s coming out tomorrow, for laundry day.  My mother’s first Meals on Wheels had arrived, which I had thought was supposed to be supper, but she ate it for lunch, so she asked me to take the trays to the pick-up location.  She enjoyed the meal, which is good.  If it works out, she has the option of getting it up to three times a week.

Once that was all done, I got my late father’s wheelchair, a mystery bag of stuff for the outside cats (meat, my mother said it was), the spare key for her car, and headed out.  The wheelchair went into the back of the van – my husband just brought a cane, instead of his walker, but we would have had room for both, even if the walker was there.

Did I mention I appreciate our van?

Once we got home, with the van pulled up to the house for my husband (he has been having some very bad pain days lately), and the car tucked away in one of the side sheds of the garage, the girls and I decided we had the energy to go into the city for the Costco shop.  None of want to go to Costco on a Saturday!

So off we went again, this time with me driving the van.

I am in full agreement with the mechanic, when he told me it drives like a dream, now!

Oh, how wonderful it was!

A few miles from home, though, we suddenly realized the wheelchair was still in the van!  It was folded up and lying on its side, so I didn’t notice it.  We considered turning around but figured, even with it there, we still had room for the groceries.

Did I mention how much I appreciate the room we have in the van? 😀

So we continued on to the city.

As we approached, it looked rather strange…


Our first thought – after the summer we had! – was that it was smoke.  Then maybe it was a fog?  (The camera actually cleaned up the photo of the view quite a bit; there was quite a bit less visibility.)  Then we drove into the snow!  Enough that it was swirling all over the road and affecting visibility…

… and then it was gone.

I’m not going to complain! 😀

We did our Costco shop, this time focusing on refilling the freezer more.  I also picked up a couple of strings of LED lights to replace the old strings on the spruce grove fence line, now that the Christmas stuff is coming out. I look forward to setting them up!

One of the things we get at Costco are big bags of cat food for the outside cats.  For the last few months, I’ve been getting two, but as more cats are showing up, the skunk, and now my brother’s dog coming around again and eating it, I decided to get three again.

As I was walking out after paying, however, I glanced at the receipt and noticed we were charged for four bags.

I went back to the cashier and pointed it out to her.  Before I even reached her, though, I figured I may as well just grab a fourth bag.  I’d already paid for it, and it’s not like it’s going to go to waste!

Plus, it meant no one had to fuss with doing a refund.

After Costco, we made a stop at a Walmart for some other essentials.  There are still a few more things we’ll need to come back to the city for.  None of us had the energy for another stop!  Since I planned to go to the garage on Monday to get the wheel torqued, we have decided we’ll do that and just keep on going.  If we plan it right, we can bring my husband along and drop him off to visit his father while we run errands, too.

By the time we were done, we had to get creative to fit everything in, without crushing anything more delicate! 😀

A good problem to have.

Then there was the fun part of unloading it all when we got home.

With so much for the freezer, I backed the van up closer to the sun room door.  We have been leaving the sun room open for the outside cats.  When I opened the doors into the Old Kitchen, Doom Guy was the one brave enough to go in and start exploring!  As I was opening the door, though, other cats had followed me into the sun room behind my back.  One of them was The Outsider!  I really think that we’re going to be able to socialize him faster than the rest of our own kittens!

Houses these days tend to be designed more open concept.  Older houses tend to have doors everywhere.  The old part of our house is no exception, and I find I appreciate that more than the open concept design.  I like being able to close up the doors to the Old Kitchen, and not worry about the inside cats getting out, while also being able to open other doors to allow the outside cats some extra shelter.

The groceries unloaded, the last thing to take out was my father’s wheelchair, which will be stored in the sun room for now, and the mystery bag for the outside cats my mother gave me.

It turned out to be some deli meat, and half a baggie of the cooked chicken my sister-in-law had made for my mother’s meals.

Somehow, my mother had decided that it wasn’t good anymore, and I don’t know why.  It was perfectly fine.

Well, the cats got to enjoy it, anyhow!


So here we have Beep Beep, all our own kittens, plus The Outsider, going nuts over cooked meat!

Nice to be able to give them a real treat like this.  Usually, what my mother sends out is all starchy leftovers or dried bread.  Some, we’ve thrown straight out, because it wasn’t good for cats to eat.  When I was growing up here, we had lots of barn cats, plus always at least two dogs, and never bought cat or dog food.  The cats mostly fended for themselves, as they never really came by the house, and the dogs got things like trimmings from when we butchered our own meat, but we also did give them our leftovers.  Back then, we had no idea that certain people foods were not good for cats or dogs – and in some cases, even potentially deadly.  Somehow, none of them ever got sick from it, but now that we know about it, we are much more cautious about what we end up giving them.

I think they are happy and getting well fed, and that’s what really matters. 🙂

The Re-Farmer

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