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Photograph of Robert Bruce Thompson Barbara Fritchman Thompson Diary

Week of 10 January 2005

Latest Update: Sunday, January 16, 2005 4:15 p.m.

Monday, 10 January 2005

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I guess I will pick up on Bob's thread, ha ha, about his clothing. I often tell Bob how lucky he is being married to me when it comes to buying and wearing clothes. First off, I am not a fashion slave. Most of my work clothes come from Bean and Land's End where I can buy traditional looking stuff. Second, I buy clothes when I need them not just to buy them. Bob and I have a small, walk in type closet in our bedroom. It holds all his jeans, t-shirts, and flannel shirts plus my t-shirts, short sleeve shirts and year round cotton chino style pants. The only other clothing I have are my winter pants, golf pants, and long sleeve blouses in the small closet in my office. In other words, I have very little in the way of clothes then most women and spend perhaps 1/3 of what most other women spend on shoes and clothes. You may notice I did not mention anything about dresses. Well, I hate dresses, always have. I own one dress. Otherwise, if I cannot wear dress pants, I just don't go. The reason... I have not worn dresses on a regular basis for 25 years. If I needed a dress for an occasion I would go out and buy one. I was very lucky to have had a job and also in my current job to be able to wear slacks. I have also, in the last several years, come to hate jeans. I find them very uncomfortable, hot in the summer and cold in the winter.

Obviously, I cannot wear worn out, ratty looking stuff to work which means replacing things in that part of my wardrobe as needed. Usually my worn out looking work pants become spring and fall golf pants and then very often become yard pants. I rotate my tennis shoes the same way. Old ones become yard shoes. And of course he was very nice in not mentioning that the one reason he still has pants and shirts pre-dating our marriage is because he still wears the same size. I, on the other hand, am not the same size I was when we got married.

Of course, he also did not tell you the reason he is not in any hurry to wear his new shirts, shoes, or jeans it because I bought them for him to replace his worn out shoes, t-shirts, and underwear. I don't think, in the 21 years we have been married, he has ever bought a single item of clothing for himself.

Well, now you know all the ends and outs of the fashion world from the Thompson household. 


Tuesday, 11 January 2005

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I took Duncan to the vet this afternoon for his annual checkup. I have been concerned over the fact that the bald spot on his back was not growing back the fur from his surgery last November. Also, in the last few weeks he has started dribbling urine almost like he could not control it especially when I was brushing him. Today at the vets he did it continuously and it had a very strong smell to it.

After running some basic tests he determined the might have a bladder infection, he may have kidney problems, and/or he may have some prostate issues. Since I wanted to start Duncan on something for his hips/leg stiffness we also got two weeks of Dermaxx. Next week Duncan goes back to the vets for blood work and another urine sample to do a full panel. We are going to check for thyroid problems, kidney problems, glandular irregularities, and the prostate. Hopefully the fact his hair is not growing back in will be thyroid or some other minor problem.

Duncan still acts like a very young dog most of time playing ball, pulling on the leash when he is walked, etc. At ten years old minor health issues are expected to start coming up. Guess we will find out more in the next few weeks.

Lasts night I sat up reading until I finished O'Artful Death. It was a wonderful book. Guess tonight I will start another Sister Fidelma.


Wednesday, 12 January 2005

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Bob snapped this picture of Duncan taking a nap this afternoon. Note how he has neatly arranged the pillow for resting his head.

Duncan napping

We slept in until 7am this morning due to the fact that I had a 9am eye doctor appointment. As I suspected my distance vision had really gone south since my last eye exam. My close up vision has not changed much at all. From a little less than an arm's length out I could either not see at all or only large writing and objects. Rather than go from bi-focals to tri-focals I am going back to the progressive lenses like I wore when I first started wearing bi-focals. The eye doctor said they have been greatly improved from the six or eight years ago that I wore them. The last two times I switched my glasses I went to the lined lens. With the progressive lens I will have that variation in power at which ever distance I need.

One of the bad things about progressives that has not been fixed is the side glance distortion. In order to see something to the side you must turn your head and follow your nose so to speak in order to see. When I worked at the library all I did was glance up and back all day long. Now that I basically work either straight ahead at the screen or down at a piece of paper I do not have that issue to worry about.

My dad has had glaucoma for abut 20 years or so. As you know it is hereditary. My pressure was not high enough to start me on drops but I do need to have it checked again in another year. While the doctor waited for my pupils to dilate I went over to the optical center to order and be fitted for my glasses. I am very hard on frames  with my active lifestyle of working in the yard, playing golf, etc. Taking them on and off to wipe sweat and keep them clean is hard on them. I picked a little more expensive frame made of the new NASA materials which bends and flexes while holding its shape. Also, being a lighter weight frame it will help the weight of the glasses since my lenses will be heavy with having both the progressive and transitions.

I was at work by 10am. The first hour was a lot of fun trying to work with my pupils still dilated. I was finally able to see well again early in the afternoon. As usual, it was rush home, fix dinner, and off to the gym for step class. You may have noticed (or not) that I have not mentioned body/power pump class for awhile. With all exercise routines your body needs change periodically. I have decided to stay with the step classes and go back to working out on the Cybex/Nautilus type machines. I will do those after my step workout for about 15 or 20 minutes. I will continue to do the Saturday morning spinning class.

Time to go out and give the dogs some playtime.


Thursday, 13 January 2005

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Well, it has been a long day. Our server for the InterAction software started acting up first thing this morning. The situation that occurs when this happens is each command made back to the server takes four to six minutes to clear. If I am matching a phone number to an address or approving a data base change it sits there for five minutes. It literally took me 20 minutes to clear four tickets. Needless to say this is very frustrating and a waste of working time. I keep copies of our two books on my desk and very often have a magazine available for just these instances. I enter a command, sit and read, enter a command, etc.

Our database guru was out this morning so we sent him e-mail it was acting up. He replied back that some behind the scene processes were going on and should be finished by mid-morning. At 11am it was still slow. Our supervisor finally got back in touch with said guru to see if the server needed rebooted.

Around midday things speeded up for about an hour. Then we crashed, going down completely. It was like that all day up until I left at 3.

Bob called around midday to let me know eye center called to tell me my glasses were ready to be picked up. I was flabbergasted to say the least.

I took off at 3 to stop on the way home. As soon as I put them on I was amazed at how sharp everything was off in the distance. My medium range and long distance vision had REALLY gotten bad. It will take a few days to get used to the new progressive lenses again. While there is still some distortion I can actually sit and work at my computer without sitting on top of my monitor. Walking around, especially up and down stairs is also tricky the first two days. Reading up close will also be different since I no longer have just the wide, straight across magnification.

On the way home I stopped at the bank to deposit some checks then came on home to pick up Bob. He was giving the dogs a quick out before we left for the library. I had Friends of the Library meeting. Afterward we ate dinner across the street at the Chinese restaurant then I shopped for groceries while Bob sat in the care and waited.

I think we are to get rain and possibly some thunderstorms tonight. It has been very warm the last couple of days actually setting some record highs for our area. The dogs need some playtime, better go.


Friday, 14 January 2005

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It has been a long week and I am feeling it by this evening. We found out at work this morning what the server problems had been. I knew something was up Monday and Tuesday when we had such a light number of tickets. Wednesday they picked up a little and then yesterday was the crash. They took the server down last night for two hours to work on it. This morning it spit out 528 tickets, guess that was what it was chocking on yesterday. Since I had to work through lunch and until 4:30 to make up the remainder of my time for my eye appointment and leaving early yesterday, I worked heads down all day to get my ticket box cleared out down to at least under 100 by the time I left this afternoon. Since I knew on Monday I had the eye exam I worked Monday and Tuesday through lunch plus yesterday and today. I am used to getting my half hour of fresh air and walk at least four days out of five.

I have now had a full day using my new glasses. Yes, I will stop talking about them, I promise. But, you just do not know how wonderful it is to be able to see. Last night I was sitting on my end of the couch. I looked over past Bob to his computer screen and almost fainted from shock...I could actually read the words on the screen. Grocery shopping last night was so much fun. I did not have to either stand on the shelf to see items let alone read them or stand all the way across the isle.

We will spend a quiet evening reading and listening to some classical music. I started watching Wednesday's tape of West Wing with dinner. Once we get the other half of it watched will proceed with our quiet evening plans. I am almost finished with the Sister Fidelma.

We had spring, now we are back to winter. While it did rain and blow last night, we did not get any major storms or weather. We were under tornado watch until later in the night. This afternoon the temperatures continued to plunge from the 70's at 10pm last night to the low 40's by dinner time. With the long weekend, we have Monday off, I have a lot of plans for getting my inside projects completed.


Saturday, 15 January 2005

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Making progress. The Christmas decorations are packed away in the downstairs closet. I vacuumed the carpet and tidied up the room. For Christmas Frances and Al gave me a new hand held vacuum to use on the stairs made by Shark. Last week I used it to vacuum out the car. Today, I did the stairs. I works really well. Not only does it have enough power to suck up the dog hair from the car seats and stairs but it had a HEPA filter and plastic dirt catcher rather than a bag. Works very well.

I was up this morning around 7:30. My plans had been to hit the 9am spin class at the gym but arriving half an hour earlier to work the weight machines. Just as I started fixing my breakfast the phone rang. It was our neighbor across the street. She has been going through pretty rough time of it the last year taking care of her elderly 92 year old father. She also worked for US Airways. Several weeks ago she lost her job on a Thursday morning and her dad had a stoke that afternoon. When she needs to be away for long periods of time she calls us to let her dog Max out and sometimes to feed him.

Her dad passed away Thursday morning. She called this morning in more of less of a panic state and asked if I could come over. I quickly got dressed and went over. Her daughter and son-in-law live here in town but both were at work. She just needed someone to be in the house with her and provide moral support. Bob had already told her he would type of the obituary for the newspaper for her. I was over there about half an hour just talking with her. While she took a shower I brought her written out obit for Bob to type up. While he did that I ate my cereal. When I returned for her to read it over she was on the phone with the florist. A little while later Bob came over. Once she was off the phone and read through the drafts Bob brought them back home to correct and burn to a CD for the funeral home. By this time she was back under control and feeling much better. She had someone coming over to drive her to the funeral home and go in with her to make all the arrangements. I was glad to be able to be there for her.

I left around 10 to go to the gym to work out on the cardio equipment and the weight machines. After lunch I got the downstairs stuff done then tackled my office. I moved some books I am not using off my book shelves to make some additional room for our growing paperback mystery collection.

My belated Christmas present from Bob came yesterday, a Creative MuVo MP3 player. I wanted something small and light I could take to the gym to replace my cassette player. I am on my second or third one. Bob loaded some of his MP3 he already had stored to see how it worked. It is really cool. I addition to playing MP3 music I can listen to the radio and record. It is about the size of cigarette lighter and weighs almost nothing.

Guess I better get dinner started. I am grilling steak for Bob and chicken for me with our favorite red potatoes boiled in their jackets. It has been cold and windy today with the temperatures barely making it out the 40's but the wind chill down in the 30's.

I did take the dogs outback around 3:15 for a short playtime while I cut my butterfly bushes back for the year.


Sunday, 16 January 2005

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Greetings from the cold south. With the temperatures not expected to reach 40 degrees until noon plus a 5 -10 mph wind it was too cold to play golf. I cleaned house this morning while Bob did the laundry.

I left at 11am to go to my folks house to visit and have lunch. Also, dad needed to have his lawn mower taken in for service. The John Deere place is five miles or so out past our house. I brought it home with me today and will deliver it tomorrow.

While I was at my parents Bob went over to Paul and Mary's house. They had some computer stuff they wanted Bob to do for them. I told him I would come on back home and get some stuff done here.

I have spend all afternoon catching up on e-mails and working on my office.  I cleared off things to be looked at/filed from my desk, finished up organizing my shelves, etc, etc.

With the new year I had spreadsheets to create and files for the filing cabinet. I took a break to walk the dogs but have otherwise been working steadily since 1:30. Bob just now got home. I am glad I did not go with him. While I would have enjoyed visiting with them I would not wanted to have wasted an entire afternoon when I could be getting things done.

On the new glass front news. It has taken several days to find the correct range for working at my desk between my eyes and the monitor. I am still used to having to sit right on top of my desk, so to speak, to be able to read the monitor. I experimented with moving the monitor back and forth as well as my chair until I think I have found a comfortable distance.

Hope you had a good weekend. Time to get some dinner going.


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