Wednesday, August 04, 2010
In 2004, the year we bought this house, four hurricanes hit Florida. Charlie and Ivan were both headed straight for Tampa Bay with 155 MPH winds, but Charlie turned right and Ivan turned left. One of the others hit the east coast, came all the way across the state, and still had 70 MPH winds when it got here. I don't think that's still a hurricane, but it was like a serious thunderstorm, and it blew down our neighbor's fence, which separated our yards. One of the attractions that the BW likes was a six foot privacy fence completely surrounding the back yard, and without Rob's fence, it wasn't private anymore.
Rob said he had just replaced the fence on the other side, but didn't have any money for this side, so I told him that I had money but not a way to bring the material home. After a little nagging, he borrowed a trailer and we went to Home Depot and bought enough fence panels to replace the fence. It turned out that he bought the thinner stock that matched the other side of his yard, and we reused the fence posts because they had just been pulled out of the ground and were still sound. He insisted on leaving the attaching spikes sticking up about three fourths of an inch and mounting the panels level, even though the ground slanted about three inches for each panel. That meant that Harry and Gracie could easily dig out, so I put railroad ties and landscape timbers along the bottom of his fence.
Then we got reclaimed water, which is essentially just pond water here, and I had an irrigation system put in. Six years later Rob's fence is in bad shape - the pickets keep coming loose at the top, the bottom, and in the middle. In the beginning I just nailed them back up, but they would come loose again. Eventually I started using primed 1 3/8 inch wallboard screws, which hold just fine. One screw instead of two nails really holds things in place.
The trouble is, some of the fence is weted every time the irrigation system does it's thing. The fence is coming apart where the irrigation water doesn't hit, but it's more worn where it does. Where the screws have been used in the middle and the top, or the middle and the bottom, the pickets have bowed out a couple of inches, and the privacy fence isn't private any more. Not only that, it looks funny, and one of his fence posts have rotted off, which I can't fix because it's on his side of the fence.
I can replace the bowed pickets, however, and today I went to home depot and bought six pickets. When I got home, the battery in my 18 volt drill was sort of weak. The last time I put screws in the fence I ran an extension cord out and used a hammer drill and a deck tool, which is a big drill geared down 6 to 1. The hammer drill for a pilot hole, and the deck tool to drive the screws. It turned out I didn't really need a pilot hole, which is also the case with the battery drill when the battery is fully charged.
Because I'm clean right now, and because I'm going to a Kiwanis meeting in a couple of hours, I decided to charge both batteries for the cordless drill and just take on the fence after my walk tomorrow. I already had a little sweat from storing and moving stuff in the garage, and I didn't feel like stretching the extension cords and digging out another drill. Tomorrow both the original battery and the spare will be killers.
Tuesday, August 03, 2010
I rolled out this morning, let the dogs out and fed them, and made it to Tiffany's Restaurant before seven, which gave me plenty of time to set up the room. There was a fair amount of discussion over the Ozona Elementary pancake supper because it is happening in October, after we are supposedly merged with Tarpon Springs, and also because it happens on a Friday night, early, and our tow truck won't be back to move the trailer on their time-table. Tom was going to check with the principal to see if the Sheriff's Department has agreed to put on the Bike Rodeo on that date, and we'll discuss it with the Tarpon Springs group tomorrow night. I'm going to get there early and get a view seat. The last time I had my back to the water.
We had 0.8 inches of rain Sunday after dark, and another 0.4 inches last night after dark. I got rained on a little in the afternoon, but it wasn't serious until later. Today there was some sun in the morning, but it's cloudy now and looking pretty grim. It's pretty miserable when the temperature is in the mid ninety's and the humidity is high. Every time I got out of the car my classes turned solid white, and I had to take them off to see until I could get into a building (which is always air conditioned around here).
Annie and Jerzy are in Warsaw now. We had an e-mail from Annie, and it sounds like Jerzy is having fun showing Annie his college and all the places he remembers from his youth. She is impressed with the buildings' architecture, the King's summer palace, etc. Says the US Embassy looks very plain compared to the rest of the city.
I'm at 671 calories now, so I shouldn't have any problem today.
I need to put a battery in a wall clock and do some other chores, so this is all you get for three points.
Monday, August 02, 2010
I took the dogs for a walk first today, in case I had trouble. I did have trouble, because when they crossed their leashes I couldn't see to untwist them, so I made them heel most of the time. That went OK, as did the solo walk afterward. I think my feet will hold up.
Later I did the Spark thing, then finished the Kiwanis books, checked everything against everything else, and printed 10 copies of the August Profit and Loss statement for the board meeting tomorrow.
After that I was going to Ace Hardware, but the BW wanted some Superglue Jell and hadn't been able to find it at a drug store, so she came along. We went to five places and really economized on the travel. First the Sherrif's Ranch to give them a tea pot and big bag, then Walgreen's, but they didn't have the Gel either, then Ace Hardware, where I got a little plastic glazing to reinforce a frame I'm making and also got a free bag of popcorn, and she got what she wanted (on sale) and a bunch of other stuff that looked good. Then we went to Staples, where I got three binders, and finally to Sweetbay, where I dropped off two bags of grocery bags in the recycle box, then bought bread and a 12 pack of Old Milwaukee. We did a lot of travelling in a loop, and only spent about 30 dollars.
After that I just read a book, ate 12 cups of popcorn and drank two O'douls, and had soup for supper even though I wasn't hungry. With a little apple crisp it all came out to 1712 calories, which is almost at my target. I was looking good in almost all of the food components they measure. The bad one was sodium, and I don't know why.
Sunday, August 01, 2010
I did cut the grass today, then use the edger, and even the blower to clear the sidewalks and driveway, and my feet didn't bother me at all. I'm not sure, but I think maybe the one time when I did something or other where I wore my outside shoes with no socks was the cause of my troubles. I had 5988 steps on the pedometer when I finished my shower and was dressed again, about 10:30, and right now it reads 6021 at 1:20. If you just sit still most of the day you don't get many steps in - I only recorded 2090 for the whole day yesterday, and most days I'm past 8,000 by the time I'm done with the dogs and ready to start the day.
The spring rolls turned out much better last night than they did the first time I tried some. Practice may not make perfect, but it does usually make better. The next time I give it a shot I'll add some rice vermicelli to hold things together. Following the Spark recipe was impossible for me - there were supposed to be only three spring rolls, and I made a total of 10 with the filling, and those ten were larger than the ones I recall from restaurants. I got the knack of rolling them up fairly tight, but they are still translucent instead of white, and I think you need to make them a day or night before so they can sit in the refrigerator and dry out a little.
Saturday, July 31, 2010
My feet were almost too tender to make it to the bathroom last night, so I took today off from the walking routine. I need to mow the lawn tomorrow and wanted to see if they would recover some, and it seems as if they have. By about 3 PM they didn't hurt, but I haven't been wearing shoes. They weren't too bad on the carpet with the pad, but bare floors were tough at first. So far I have only put on 1265 steps, so staying off the feet might have some effect on the recovery.
I also have been putting Retin A on my right arm without any ill effects so far, except for one evening when I forgot and rubbed my eye a little with my left hand after rubbing the stuff on, but before I washed it off. It did burn a little, but I was fine. You really need to read the detailed instructions that come with the medicine, because they warn you that you can have all the skin peeling off if you put a lot on (only use a little) or put it on wet skin. It has to be perfectly dry and this is one of those cases where more is not better.
We trimmed Ralphie today and I got the clean-up detail. Since we did the job in the garage I used the shop-vac to suck up the dog hair. When I emptied the tank it was astonishing how much hair comes off of a little dog when you're just trimming his feet and ears - it looked as if there had been a whole dog in there.
Now my laundry is going and I'm about to just sit and read a book. I was going to make spring rolls for supper, but that's not for a couple of hours.
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