It was 11 degrees at 6:30 this morning. We're more fortunate than the folks living up north. I heard it was -27 degrees in one of the Dakotas. Dang. That is cold!
We came home early from our Christmas vacation. Had to cancel St. Augustine and South Carolina. I broke a tooth biting down on a stone crab claw shell the Monday night before Christmas day. Every dentist I called in the Bradenton area was only seeing "patients of record." For seven days, I chewed...very carefully...on the opposite side.
I have the distinct advantage of having a little experience with dentistry. I was dental assistant in my very early twenties with just enough residual knowledge to be dangerous. My mind went from best case scenario (a simple crown would restore the tooth to it's former self, approximately $1,000) to worst case scenario (the tooth would be beyond repair, would be extracted and I would need a bridge, upwards of $4,500). When I walked into the dentist's office the Monday after our return home, I had, of course, resigned myself to worst case scenario.
But, an hour and a half later, with a numb lip and a temporary crown in place, I paid for the best case scenario and that night happily chewed my food once again on the left side of my mouth.
With still a week left of our Christmas vacation, Tom decided not to go to back to work. Instead, he chose to work at home. He scraped the popcorn ceiling in the living room and painted it. He painted and installed crown molding around the newly painted ceiling. Then he installed the hardwood flooring that's been "acclimating" in the guest room closet for a year and a half. It looks beautiful.
We'd work on the house most of the day, Tom scraping, painting and installing while I dusted, culled out and reorganized. Late afternoons we'd sit and watch the news, anticipating the approach of the "polar vortex." We'd left Florida and 80 degree weather, definitely our preference. Tom posed the idea first...
TOM: What if we spent three months in Florida next year? The coldest months - December, January and February. We could stay at that RV park across Cortez Road from Star Fish Company.
ME: I don't know. I hadn't thought about it at all.
TOM: Do you think you could live in the travel trailer that long?
ME: Yeah, because we would be outside almost all the time, except when it rains.
TOM: Do you think we could swing it financially?
ME: I think we might be able to if we shift some priorities.
So, that's the priority this year. I mean, who wouldn't want to spend several afternoons a week having lunch with a view while friends and family are back in Arkansas dealing with frigid temperatures and ice storms?