We are painting!

And by “we” I mean we hired someone to paint.  Fully intending on doing it ourselves and with the Looooooong list of other things we are trying to get done this Summer we have vended this task out.

Now, don’t get me wrong, that leaves us plenty of things to get done first.  We picked up the paint this weekend and got it all home.  This morning we were up at 6:00 a.m. and in the yard cutting back plants near the South side of the house so they can have access.

We chose 6:00 a.m. because it was almost too hot by 7:30 and we both had workouts to get to after that.  We were cutting back the fire-sticks and they ooze this poisonous white sap that is a major skin irritant.

Because I was sweating so much from my face, I kept wiping with the inside of my T-shirt, but I ended up with both eyes having a red “burn” area and all around my mouth.

I was really trying not to touch my face, hence using the inside of my shirt collar but it was so hot and my face was sweating so much I joked that I alone was the cause for the high humidity level today.

We have some things to move like the kitty condo which will happen on Friday when they come to power wash.

I failed to get any pictures of the stuff we cut back today, but I will surely get before and after of the house.


4th of July

Our fourth was spent weeding and pulling out a huge agave.  I pulled out one of the beach umbrellas to try to stay a little cooler.   Granted it was the coolest day of the week, tomorrow is looking to be 107.  Good Grief.

We are making progress and we know this is a Summer project as we eliminate and thin everything and pull the damn grass out.  We are planning to move my garden bed which will be a huge endeavor once we get that far.

Today my sit bones hurt however.  I spent 6 hours on that little grey stool and although I added a pad to it during the middle.  Just another downside of having no junk in the trunk.

The evening on the 4th was spent watching a very loud TV to try to drown out the fireworks.  I left the hose out “just in case” and when I went looking for the outside kitty the air was full of smoke and the street full of rubbish.  I am not a fan at all!  Our city allows “safe and sane” fireworks from July 1st to the 4th so hears hoping no more are going off tonight.

endless yard work

The yard is OUT-OF-HAND.  We planted pretty sparingly a few years ago.  However all of the specimens have grown, pupped and in general taken over the entire yard.  The gravel pathway is impossible to pass as it is full of Aloes and Agaves and many other plants we are finding.


I don’t actually have a before picture.  This is from the cable exchange a couple of months ago but you can see the Jerusalem Sage, the Aoneums, the rose-bush and several of the Blue Agave’s that pupped from the one I planted.

The sage was the first thing pulled out last week.  I went off to work and Lori continued to tear things out.  All of the Aoneums are gone.  She cut them back and relocated the nice ones in a shadier are.  She also trimmed back the rose.  This weekend she worked on tearing out the Agaves and I weeded grass out of the path.

We have a long way to go, but there is a plan and the yard already feels clearer although it is a disaster.  We are piling up the yard waste and once complete anything that didn’t make it into the weekly pick up we will rent a uhaul and go to the green waste around the corner.



Vegas Vacation


One of the side events we did this weekend was going to Hoover Dam.  It is one of the coolest, remarkable things ever built and I really wanted to share it with Lori.  We took the tour and went through the remarkable timeline and feat of the building of the dam.


We drove up to Vegas on Friday, went to a lovely dinner to celebrate Lori’s birthday.  Our friends arrived on Saturday afternoon.  (We had done Hoover in the morning).  Both of our friends birthdays are this week as well and the event we were meeting for was a birthday surprise for one.

Sunday we went to see Cirque du Soleil Michael Jackson One show.  We had fabulous seats in the third row and the show was amazing.

Besides the show and the dam, the rest of our four days was sitting by the pool, relaxing at the resort, eating/drinking.  Pretty good time was had.  Now back to work today and back to reality as I catch up on the news from the last few days.


Road-Trip Recap

The weekend had a lot of driving and a lot of visiting.

After I flew up on Wednesday we visited with my aunt and cousins for a couple of hours then checked into a best western for the night.  In the morning we met Lori’s life long friend and her son for breakfast and then headed toward Nappa. We walked around Nappa (not big drinkers) we wandered through the shops and sat and sketched a while.

We then headed back toward Vallejo.   We checked into the travel lodge for the night and then went and met my friend Mike from 20 years ago.   We spent a couple of hours touring his lovely garden and house before walking to dinner.   It was so fun to catch up with him and there seemed to be no time that had passed since the last time I saw him.

The next morning we drove to Rocklin and see Lori’s friend Alice from grad school and see the baby and their new house.  We stopped in Sacramento on our way for breakfast and went to my favorite spot there the Fox and Goose.  Staying on Whole30 the whole trip while eating all meals out wasn’t too challenging but breakfast at the Fox and Goose was a breeze and so good.

We got to Rocklin early and went to a movie!!!  In the middle of the day!!!  It has been so long since we went to a movie, it was a ton of fun.  We saw Oceans 8 and enjoyed the downtime along with the cool theatre since it was 110 outside.

We stayed at their place, we would both rather stay in a hotel but they were expecting us to stay and the guest room was all set up.  The baby slept through the night and didn’t wake us and luckily we didn’t wake her either.

Our plan was to head to Tahoe that morning, but we were getting a much later start and decided to just head home.  A few stops along the way as it is a very long drive.  When we got back my brother was still there and two of the cats were no shows for the time we were gone.

The cat who usually comes in and sleeps in the house showed back up but is very apprehensive about coming in.  She wanted in about 2:00 a.m. this morning and slept for a couple of hours before wanting back out about 5:00 a.m.   The pregnant cat came around for dinner last night and is skinny again, so somewhere in our neighborhood there are kittens.

prep for a weekend away

Here I am blogging on the airport WIFi, heading to the Bay Area to meet up with Lori. This bag doesn’t look like much but the prep to get ready for the weekend takes some effort.

A weekend away means a lot of prep work prior to ever leaving.

I worked Monday and Tuesday but before work each day there was a litany of things I needed to get done at home.

First I am still eating Whole30, but I didn’t really want to defrost any protein nor go shopping.  So there was a lot of leftovers and random meals like this.

IMG_6047The end of the peas, carrots and grapes along with compliant lunch meat.

There was laundry and packing (although its only 5 days so a small backpack is all I am bringing).

Since my darling brother will be coming by for all the CATS, and I now have no food there for him, I went to our favorite Thai restaurant and picked him up some Tofu Phad Thai and Veggie Fried Rice.

I knew I was missing Thai food being on Whole30 since January, but driving this stuff home my mouth was watering.  All is good, I put it in the fridge for my brother to re-heat while he is around this weekend.

IMG_6043What I forgot was the CSA box that would deliver Tuesday night/Wednesday morning so now my brother can eat off of those veggies as well. I got to put all that away this morning as well, time I hadn’t factored in. The bird feathers and skull on the back mat when I went out for the laundry this morning wasn’t factored into the timing either.

There was weeding to do this week. I wanted to finish filling the yard waste bin.  Taking all of the bins to the street for pick up this morning.  I also changed the litter box.  Lori clears it twice a day and I have only managed once each day since Saturday.  Usually in the middle of the day when I realize I forgot to do it.

I made new hummingbird food and cleaned out the feeders.  This has to be done every week because they start to mold hanging out there in the sun.  Since we are not back until Sunday and leave again next Friday I will have to change it again once I get home again.

This morning after the cats were fed, I packed my backpack I ran by the post office to mail a baby blanket for my niece who is due in a few weeks (oh yea, I finished the blanket yesterday as well.)  Now I am just waiting to board. And we are boarding so I will publish this and try to post as some point this weekend.


Lets get back to something more sane than healthcare.  Like the fact that we have MORE cats hanging around.  In actuality, the FOUR cats, only one of whom lives inside feels more sane then healthcare.

Seriously!  This newest cat has been around for days.  Will not leave the yard and MEOWS all the time.  I have no idea if it is male or female.  Based on size I think it is a few years old.



In other Cat news, the knocked up Lolli (or as Lori has started calling her Lolita) is back and about to pop out kittens any day.   She was there everyday while in heat and making a ruckus.  Then she was gone for a few weeks and by the time she was back was clearly pregnant.  She looks like she has in inner tube under her fur when she is walking.

Today I sat there while her starved self ate breakfast, I think this new cat lets call it loud mouth has been eating her food.  We don’t put it down unless she is there, but I think the last few days loud mouth is running her off.

So I sat there while she ate, then left the rest for what seems to be the starving loudmouth in the yard.  I am still afraid of cats and although the cat and a half that live in the house I am ok with.  I have still never even petted Lolli or gone near this new one.

Lori has been out-of-town since the middle of the night Friday and tomorrow I am flying up to the bay area to meet her and have a long weekend and drive back.  My brother will be coming by to care for the cat(s)(s)(?).    The cat feeding instructions just got a lot more complicated.

Feed the indoor cat and the grey indoor/outdoor cat (good luck timing her arrival with yours) and Lolli only comes by in the morning but she is about to have kittens so who knows (she was sleeping in the plants out front but I am no longer sure,) if you don’t see her don’t worry about it and now this new cat who will let you know it is here.  shew.