Rounding Up; Rounding Down

Blogging in itself is easy enough, all theory.  My blog is basically an on-line journal. And by journal I don’t mean anything with any depth what-so-ever.  I learned early on when I was called out and told just how wrong I was.  Wrong for my own opinion.  There were no facts involved to argue, just my P.O.V. which was shot right down.  I don’t think that particular blog stayed up long, I was much thinner skinned seven years ago when this view started.

However my shallow, non-edgy, commentary continues.  Since moving, this has become more of a place to keep my friends and family updated on what I am up to.  The down side of that is and always has been I don’t hear from many people.  Since they know what is going on with me there is a feeling “we are all caught up”   Sometimes it feels a little isolating.  I don’t have any friends here….well except for those I absconded from Lori.  But the place where I tend to make friends (work) I will not be making any friends there.   In fact I’m not even out there and it is both weird and limiting.  Someone recently asked “Does your husband work for us too”  To which I just replied no.  The conversation ended right there.

I realize it’s a two-way street.  I don’t make the calls either.  In our digital world and everyone’s busy schedules, I get tweets and blog comments and emails.  I may think to call and then realize, oh they are a blog subscriber, they already know all that I have to say and then I don’t call.   Seriously, you want to hear about my cucumbers on the phone if you’ve already suffered through the blog…I think not.

With that happy note, here is what is going on:

Yard, front:  Its been a year since it’s all been planted and boy oh boy id it grow more that we thought.  It takes very little water.  Once a month or so this Summer.   It does need some pruning and thinning and general up keep but in the evenings it is sweltering in the front yard until the sun goes down….well then there is no light obviously.

Yard, back:  The garden is growing crazy amounts of cucumbers and I am eating them as fast as possible.  I said no to them at first but was having such trouble getting the lettuce or spinach to come up because of the heat I settled on one single plant that right now would fill the 64 gallon yard waste bin if I were to just pull it.  The rest of the yard is coming along slowly.  We added some gravel last night and Lori has been cutting back and cleaning up a huge cactus plant.  We are going to put it all back in along the back fence.

Desert house:  Yard sale is scheduled for this coming weekend.   There was some hope that someone who called after the ad ran would drive up last weekend and buy the whole lot.  Good thing we weren’t holding our breath for that.  We finished cleaning out the rental storage unit and took six more cases of books to the local library.  One of the cars is 99 percent sold as well.  Lori’s friends drove it off to be checked out and it is a 2003 but only has 20K miles so it shouldn’t have too much to fix.  Working in the heat this last weekend to price all of the stuff for the yard sale I was not doing very well, I think I had a bit of heat stroke and was quite dizzy.  I drank plenty of water, in fact I felt ill from all the water but boy was I light headed and not feeling well.  This weekend during the sale its expected to be 103 again.

Job:  It pays the bills.  It is challenging and dysfunctional…….yep, sounds like every job everywhere.  Nothing more to add.

Mountain home:  My sister and brother both continue to take care of the place and it takes that worry off my plate.  They were pressure washing and staining the deck this weekend.  Della went back to an old job last week and made it three and a half days before deciding the great money wasn’t worth the over three hours on the road every day.  She now has another gig lined up that started today for half the money but only 15 minutes away from the house and that doesn’t include any freeway what-so-ever.   Dale has a new truck which has a long story behind it.   He is driving to Canada each week to visit his dad in hospice.  It is wearing him out as he has been making this 7 hour drive each way for well over a month.

Vistors:  Viv is coming next month for a few days!

What is going on with you?


Cucumbers and Cheesecakes

It has been a very busy week. Work has been crazy and stressful and the rest of the week has been quite packed.

photo(325)The garden is growing like crazy. I can’t keep up with the tomatoes and have made cucumber salad or had an entire cucumber in my lunch every day. The frig is full and there are lots more in the garden. I am not even going to discuss the tomatoes, well except to say I’m ready to pull them out and start over as they are taller than me and there are so many that are unreachable they are starting to go bad.

The house/project keeps moving along. We took a huge box of dog gear to the no-kill shelter in exchange for a donation receipt. They were thrilled. We then took 5 boxes of books to the library and 11 more to another library. The offsite storage unit is down to 6 boxes of books and one broken bookshelf. We will have it cleared out this weekend so we can turn the unit back and.

We also cleaned out the van and vacuumed it.  Lori is still working on getting the cars into her name but we thought for a day that Dale might be flying down to drive it back up.  His car is caput.  He took it in for tires and possibly brakes and it was deemed un-road worthy and they wouldn’t let him drive it off the lot.  He had to have triple-A tow it back to the house.  After quite a bit of back and forth he obtained a truck up in Canada where he is visiting his dad every week.

Lori has taken a few loads to the auction house and just yesterday a load of square dancing dresses, men’s western shirts and 40 some odd ties to the local theater group.

Sunday was an errand kind of day, we fit in Costco, Michael’s so I could pick up cake boards, Ross for a birthday preset, Target, Sprouts grocery and Trader Joes.  Then later in the day I made a couple cheesecakes, one for a tester in our gas oven and another for a co-worker who was paying for it.

The work week started and it seems like I have hardly blinked and it is half over.

Lucky me!

My sister has a few jobs lining up so soon the progress in the yard will certainly slow.  However I am feeling quite blessed that Della and Dale are keeping the house in good repair.

Dale who just got home from seeing his dad for the weekend, a weekly trip he has been making for a month now, was still able to get the pool cleaned before heading off to work.

Della worked on pruning up the Lilac that was being overtaken by suckers.

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I also sorta love just how brown the grass is.  I wish LA could embrace the brown grass and quit watering every single day.  I am so glad we are putting in the succulents and water wise gardens.  Except for the vegetable garden bed we are able to water about every 14 days in this heat.


multi-tasking life

Monday and Wednesday nights are usually when I do my weight workouts, Lori is in class and I spend extra time at the gym.  However there are only so many hours and many more projects,work, chores and workouts to squeeze into these hours.  On my 30 minute lunch break today I went to home depot and bought the 1,000 pound bag of gravel and let my ‘weight’ workout be unloading it.  I got about a third of this pathway completed and although it wasn’t as strenuous as the weights it was still ten or eleven wheelbarrows full.

I managed to fit a light run in after so it felt like I really got some exercise in, I am trying to remember it’s not the “finding time” but “making time” !

There was still enough light left when I got back to water the back yard.  It’s now dark so I am imagining Lori reading this in the morning in her email and walking out back to see it.  teee heee heee  (That is if I can NOT tell her tonight)

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T minus 19 days , or something like that

We are just under three weeks away from the yard/estate sale.  Saturday we managed to get almost everything else sorted and into the appropriate stack or shed.  We have a full shed of yarn, sewing stuff and craft stuff.  Two sheds full of kitchen appliances.  A garage full of vacuums, lamps, tools, and lots of miscellaneous items like 60 or so square dancing dresses.

This weekend starts the tagging, pricing, tagging, pricing, tagging…… you get the idea.  Lori has lined up some of her friends to help on the actual yard sale weekend and she will be running some advertisements in the local newspaper.

Besides selling these items and clearing them out, we are most excited to get to the flooring, painting and fixing up part of this endeavor.


One rogue cucumber

Just a few days without watching the garden and all crazy happened.


So this is the current garden.  There are volumes of what could be written about the amount of tomatoes we have and are eating at. every. single. meal.  But this is a story about the cucumber plant, the single, only one plant cucumber.

The cucumber has now grown over my pepper plant and some strawberries.  There are hundreds of little cucumbers.  They don’t seem to be growing.


Yesterday when I was watering I happened to notice one in the leaves.  It was bigger and I thought “Oh good they are starting to grow” all of the others are still small, like the one in front of this what turned out to be a monster of a cucumber.


When all the others are an inch to maybe two inches long and barely the diameter of a pencil, this rogue cucumber is over a FOOT long.  When did this happen, how did it happen and a general WTF!


Family / Project week

What a week, we are home now, over heating and exhausted.

We headed North with lots of plans for projects and visiting.  As usual things get sidelined but we were still able to get a lot accomplished.

IMG_6888We were not able to stain the deck or paint the house.  We ended up with far more family at the house then we first planned so those things had to be put on hold.  My niece, her partner and their son flew in from Philadelphia.  It just wasn’t feasible to not have the deck available or that much going on with a two-year old running around.  I did pick up the stain for the deck, Della and Dale will be tackling that once everyone has left.

We ended up having a four day BBQ but were still able to get some other projects done around the house.  One of the things we did was take down a fence that was no longer needed.  We reused some of the fence panels to build a new planter for the fig tree that had completely outgrown the whiskey barrel it had been in.  I am sure the poor thing will go into shock after it took a sledge-hammer to get it out of the barrel.

We also took out a diseased nectarine tree and trimmed up a bunch of other trees that needed some trimming.

Luckily Dale and Della have taken such good care we were able to do some fun projects and not spend the entire trip catching up on things.


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Besides these projects and family we also did get in bit of visiting.  We had dinner with Tonya and Briana, we had coffee with Linda and I went over and saw John.  I was also able to visit with Katherine but not in the fun carefree way we had planned as she had to have surgery on Monday and so most of our time together was visiting in the hospital.  The entire family was in town except Turaeza and the kids and I had two great nephews there and one was only 3 months old.  The weather cooperated for some swimming, lots of bar-b-queing and mostly hanging around on the deck.

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