The Aluminum Asylum

The Aluminum Asylum
Our home on wheels

Thursday, November 29, 2007


The tree is up, but is nekked except for the lights that came on the tree. I have set up my Santa collection on the top of the TV wall bookshelf thingy. I found Catherine's manger set but it is not one I recall her using. She had a very old ceramic set but I think that perhaps when they downsized she must have given it away. This set is like a dark pewter with glitter...she must have gotten this in Mexico years ago when they used to come down to the RGV for the winter. I have decided to set up my mismatched Christmas village under the tree since we don't think Santa is going to be bringing any packages...envelopes perhaps, but no biggies to fit under the tree. We are just going to give Zack some gift cards along with the traditional underpants, socks and handkerchiefs...its tradition from Grandma Catherine and a good one I think. She always got both Paul and Zack these needed items that one never buys for oneself.

Paul found me a used guitar stand at a pawn shop and we got a real deal on a music stand from the music shop in town that we have been to 6 times and they have been closed. So...all set for my beginning guitar lessons with the geezers at the Alamo Rec RV park.

We went to the Elk's club for dinner....Thursday is chicken fried steak and it was really good...the local "guys" from the lodge provided some nice country music and even did some Cajun numbers.

We finally decided to make fruitcake. My mom was disappointed that I wasn't gonna make it...the stuff I need is not easy to find down here until now. I usually make the cakes in October and no later than the first weekend in Nov. They are nice and mellow sitting in their weekly brandy showers by Christmas. I did give away my treasured pans (thinking I'd not make them again....*sigh*) but all I need is to borrow an angel food pan for the large cake and do a large loaf. The two cakes together weigh about 20 lbs they are so laden with fruit. I don't care for citron so I use candied pineapple and cherries, chopped apricots, dried cranberries and cherries and a whole pound of pecans and a pound of both white and dark raisins. It is like a white fruitcake, very similar in texture to a wonderfully dense pound cake with the fruit. Delish. I know a lot of folks make fun of it, but I bet they NEVER had a really good homemade one. I don't care for the molasses and rum type cakes...but in a pinch will suffer thru a piece. I will also make stollen for Christmas morning, a simple Bacardi rum cake and brown sugar choc chips. I may make some spritz if I can find someone with a cookie press, and what would Christmas be without pizzeles? Paul sold my pizzele maker....and those were his favorite! If I do one thing per day, I can handle things...mornings should be ok and then I can rest in the afternoon. No candy this year...we can't have it (except grandpa) but I can have grandpa make Hank Kerr's microwave peanut brittle. Zack certainly won't be eating anything sweet...he'll save his calories for his Jack and coke.

Well, the weekend is upon us again, and I am looking forward to going to the farmers market...the grapefruits are ready!



Monday, November 26, 2007's Monday already. For Thanksgiving we did go to the hall with 300 other folks for what turned out to be a nice dinner. Of course, I hated the turkey,(dry), the stuffing(cornbread, ick) and mashed potatoes(which I practically had to restrain the dufus serving that I DIDN"t want...) but everyone brought a dish or two and it was an incredible site to see all this food laid out. I found one or two things I liked (sweet potato casserole and raspberry cobbler) and was content. LOTS of green bean casseroles, peas and carrots in cream sauce (blech!)

Friday, Paulie and I did venture out to Wally World to get some DVD's so we could continue our transfer of VHS to DVD project...and for the 4th time I went to the music store to get a guitar stand and a music stand and it was closed! Maybe he took the weekend off.

Saturday we just kinda puttered and then went to dinner at the Elks. Prime Rib. Worstest prime rib I have ever eaten, and I am NOT making this up. Ugh. Never again...I just get a baked potato or something from the salad bar. Ick Ick Ikc.
I did sing two songs and they were well received by the crowd. We all went back to Bev's house afterwards except for Paul the poop. Not kidding...he had salad and had to use the bathroom immediately.

Sunday was a bad day for me...I slept alot and later it rained. Paul went to play Mexican Train, Grandpa was watching some slasher movie and I just read in the bedroom. We found our that one of the resident's here died Sunday morning so our dinner with Bev and the gang was cancelled for Sunday evening.

I am planning on putting up the tree tonight. Zack usually sets it up for me, but that's not gonna happen so I better ask Scrooge.

Well, not much else is going on...we finally have sun and 70's again but this weekend is looking nasty...rain and 60's again. Oh well, it is better than snow and biting cold wind!



Tuesday, November 20, 2007


Oh my, where do I begin? Paulie is off shuffling (like all the old farts who live here...Friday he lost $ this rate we will be broke by March...the loser!)
The other old fart went to get his hair(s!) cut. Just got done watching the weather forecast...jeesh, it is gonna only be in the mid 60's for the rest of the week...crap, I'll have to get out pants and close the windows. Well, we can't complain, the weather has been perfect since we got here.

I am still struggling with the problems on my computer. I have the four backup disks that I must scan for the sickies before I can reload my pix and documents.
Am just not up to facing the aggravation. So yesterday, since Paul didn't buy the DVD-RW's I asked for to start the video to dvd transfers, I decided to rifle through the thousands of pictures still not scanned and put on CD's. There must be 3000. I have been searching for a photo scanner that has an automatic feed. There is no way I am ever going to get them all scanned if I have to manually do each one individually. I did find an Epson photo/biz card feeder which was called a "scanner" but on further research, found that it is just an attachment that works with two other Epson photo scanners. Imagine my surprise when I tried to find out the prices on these two photo scanners...they are discontinued. Can you believe this crap? So I look on Ebay and there are two used ones...I hate to buy used cause you never know if someone has junked it up and is now dumping it to some unwary Ebay freak. *Sigh*. The attachment is about $150 with shipping, and the scanner I am thinking will go for about $100 with shipping. Services will scan the photos onto CDs for prices ranging from 12 cents each to 500 pictures for $60. Either way, its expensive. Paul's solution? Pick out the good ones (yeah, like I can choose which pose I like better of all Zack's baby pictures...unthinking foolish oaf...) With 3000 photos from both of us and our lives before we got married, our whole married life, including visits to now deceased relatives, and all the stuff of life in between like vacations, Christmas and other holidays, it will cost about $400 no matter what I do. Hmmm. Anybody wanna chime in here and give me some advice? I dumped all the fuzzy pix, bad pix of me (snark snark....most of Zack's life I was a blimp so many of those hit the shredder) and duplicates. I still have 3000 after the purge. I also have lots of pix my mom gave me of long ago with my godmother, grandfathers, and lots of great shots of Jan and me as little way am I gonna lose these. What is up with MEN? They are pack rats with THEIR stuff but goodness, God help the woman who wants to save her kids birth announcement for cripesakes. Grrrrr.

OK...I have about 15 minutes before the shuffleboard loser shows up and I need to get to Walmart. WE are bringing jello salad (carrots, pineapple, nuts and yellow jello) and I have three large bananas I will magically transform into my favorite and FAMOUS banana bread.

BTW, Zack is down about 75 lbs. 25 more to go before he'll cut his is down to his shoulders but curly(where that came from I'll never know...he had it when he was a baby too...blond ringlets that I cried when he got cut off....). He had a fill last Thursday, but didn't complain of any problems until Sunday when I dragged it outta him. He couldn't keep even water down...putz, what does he think he's superman and doesn't need any hydration? So get this...he tells me he is taking a lot of SHOWERS to hydrate his skin. OMG. Did he think he'd not get dehydrated by sitting in the tub or taking a shower? What is this kid learning in college for heavens sake...well, I guess as an English major he didn't take any science classes....common BRAINS would tell you to call the doc right?
He didn't want to bother him on the weekend....cripes, that's why you PAY the doctor to be there when you need them. So, being his mother I called the doc. Got the service, explained the situation and told them to page the doc and have him call Zack asap. Doc was on airplane and called as soon as he landed. Told Zack to sip Gatorade and get his ass to Clinton first thing Monday morning. The PA had overfilled his band, so the doc took our 1cc of the 2 they did on Thursday.
I am sure I was not told just exactly what the doc told the brat...sure hope he reamned him good. Supid ass. Well, like father, like son so they say....

OK, off to get ready to go to Wally world...well, at least get dressed, LOL!



Friday, November 16, 2007

Geez, arn't y'all lucky today!?!

Two posts from me...

OK, so I'm reading the boards and see the post about how to store DVDs. I get inspired (which is really rare these days ) and made Paulie dig out the VHS/DVD player/recorder out for me. He bought this for me four years ago so I could transfer all our vhs tapes to DVDs. Ok, so some stuff got in the way , like knitting, soap operas, rv trips, yanno...the normal important stuff. Well like I said, I never used it, we never even hooked it up 'cause the kid went off to college and who else is capable of adding another "thing" to the Dish/TV/DVD components?I read the instructions or should I say I paged thru the manual at least 5 times and NOWHERE did I find out how to transfer the video to the DVD. Paulie and I had some spicy conversations (read: bad words for each other!) trying to figure this out. Finally I got on line and did a search on the model etc and found some feedback on buyers of this damm guy lost his manual and asked on a board how to do the video to dvd thing. I just about stroked was there all along under, get this, DUBBING. I don't think of myself as a stupid person, actually for someone who has medical issues and spends alot of time visiting brainfog land, I do quite well.DUBBING...isn't that like voice overs on tapes and tv shows and movies? Grrrrrr. I killed a whole afternoon missing the instructions cause it was called DUBBING, not what a normal thinking person would look for...something like "How to transfer Video to DVD" or something equally intelligent and understandable to the normal NON-geeks of the world? Ok, I am done ranting.Now all I have to do is find the video thingy where you put the 8MM tapes in so you can watch 'em on the VHS so I can covert these also.I give up. 6 plus years of college and grad school did nothing for me...well, I did study marketing...hmm...maybe I'll "market" a how to for dummies on DUBBING.


Nothing new here at this point in laptop is still in shambles, I could write a book about this experience. I can't add much to Grandpa's computer and it is too slow to do anything other than get my email. Grrrrr. Hopefully I will be up and running again this week...have to figure out how to reload backup stuff without creating havoc with this piece of crap.

Sorry...not a happy camper....

Grandpa wants to eat Thanksgiving at "the hall" with everyone else. Crap. I had my face fixed for deep fried turkey, my stuffing, cranberries and pie...not see thru jello salad and cold pressed turkey. Hmmm, maybe I can change his mind? Do my own turkey on Saturday? Conflict with a 90 year old who has an extra set of stubbon genes (get the joke?) is a waste of energy and a certain trip to the medicine cabinet to get Maalox.