I ended up deleting and reinstalling everything. Worked like a charm!
I think where I screwed it up was when I got some message about it not communicating I reset my token or whatever, and NM and Nest never spoke again.
Everything is smooth as can be now (and no Watchdog warnings either). I was dreading re-automating but afterwards I kinda thought it is probably a good idea to rebuild anyway. It went really quickly this time around and I think I probably have a more efficient schedule set up that does the same thing.
One note though, it was mentioned that NM shouldn’t make a room get warmer if it looses connection because the thermostat itself has the set-points. While that is true, if you are using a remote sensor and virtual thermostat with a 5 degree buffer and then NM loses connection with Nest after the vT jacks up the temp to turn it on then your set point is still set 5 degrees higher than where you want your temp to be and will be there until you happen to notice it getting hotter than it should. My use case is I have room that heats and cools much faster than the others and there is actually no supply vents going to the hallway where the thermostat is (which seems pretty damn boneheaded from a design perspective). So, I have that room set at 69. The hallway may itself be 71. When the room gets below 69 the vT cranks up the regular thermostat to 76. If after it is set at 76 NM and Nest stop talking, it, of course, stays set at 76. Since there is no heat directly going to hall it may take a long time to get 76, especially if the door is closed. In that time, the room can get from 69 to 80 or higher. If the door is closed it usually only take about 10 minutes to increase the temp 5 degrees. In that same 10 minutes, the temp in the hallway hasn’t increased at all. So, yeah, there is a condition where a room can get overhot if they stop talking. I don’t know what could be done about that though (other than lowering the buffer but that wouldn’t completely solve the issue), its just something to be aware of.