Rain

Posted June 20, 2019 By Ruth

Two weeks ago we started a 3 day long “dry spell”.  At which point local news pointed out that the last time we had 3 days in a row with no precipitation at all was back in Sept.  No wonder my yard is wet.  At the end of that dry spell we had barely half the yard mowed.  We managed to get an additional ~1/4 of the yard mowed later last week, but thats about it.  A not small portion of my yard is still waist high grass.  And it just keeps raining.  As I type this its pouring outside, with predictions of up to another 2″ of rain between last night and tomorrow morning.  Blah.

Garden update

Posted June 1, 2019 By Ruth

Garden is officially all planted.  It was 90% planted last week, but I ended up ordering some extra jalapeno plants, and those didn’t arrive till this week.  I swear I started plenty, but somehow when it came time to plant I only had half of what I thought I had.  Oh well.

 

The rest of the yard is a mess.  Its been so rainy that we’ve not been able to mow most of the property.

Its hard to get perspective in this, but most of that grass is taller than my knees.  And the ground under it still squishes when walked on.  Its going to be “interesting” to mow it all  once we can finally get the mower back there.

House Wren

Posted May 23, 2019 By Ruth

We have a fairly large population of House Wrens here.  They can be a bit of a nuisance, taking over BlueBird boxes (and even occasionally damaging eggs), but they’re feisty little things who’re totally not afraid of the House Sparrows.  They tend to stuff the boxes (and occasionally my manual well pump head) full of sticks to make their nests in.

This year we have a new twist.  We have a half dead tree in our yard.  The Pileated Woodpeckers love it.  Last fall a Downy appeared to make a nesting hole in it, and at one point we even saw a layer of feathers in the hole, but nothing came of it.  Then, last week, I noticed the House Wren dragging sticks to that tree, but NOT going into the Bluebird box!  A change of viewing angle and I realized he was stuffing them into the woodpecker hole!  Today I got a picture of it.  That little Wren has been singing his heart out in that tree, here’s hoping he decides he likes that spot better than the well pump this year!

Life

Posted May 21, 2019 By Ruth

Turned out that a fair bit of my lingering symptoms were dehydration.  I do not understand why I’m suddenly having such big issues with dehydration.  I swear I’m drinking alot of water!  So, I bought a bunch of Snapple and Arizona Iced Teas (all non-caffeinated stuff), all of which I normally avoid, because sugary drinks, and keep forcing myself to drink and drink and drink.  And presto, I feel better!  Ugh.  Appointment with the gastro specialist is Thursday and I intend to ask if dehydration is a normal symptom or if there’s something else going on here.  Seriously, I never stopped peeing at a normal rate, and it was normal colored too.  So why was I dehydrated?!

Garden is about half planted, now if Mother Nature would stop trying to drown us…..

As of last Friday there were 4 Bluebird eggs in the nesting box, cross your fingers!

We’ve had a bunch of Baltimore Orioles this year, they’re going through orange halves at an insane rate.  I need to remember to take more pictures, I keep forgetting, on the other hand I’m enjoying watching them.  The hummingbirds are out in force again this year too, such little birds, so big egos!

Power Tool Bleg

Posted May 7, 2019 By Ruth

I have just enough energy to be thinking about all the things I want to be doing, and no where near enough energy to do any of it.

But anyway…..

I mentioned back in the fall that I’d acquired a 6’x6’x6′ wooden box to use as the basis for a future greenhouse.  My goal for it this summer is to get it moved into location on the property, get the clear roof on, and a smaller door built.  If I can get at least one sides worth of windows on that’d be awesome.  But the roof and the door would mean that I could potentially use it next spring even if I don’t get the rest of it done right away.

But this means that I’m going to have to cut holes in the plywood sides and roof.  I currently have a corded circular saw (Black & Decker), a battery powered recip saw (18v Dewalt), and various hand powered tools.  The circular saw is a full sized saw, and its heavy, no way I’m going to be using that.  I MIGHT be able to managed it with the recip (which is lighter, but not lightweight by any stretch), but especially the roof parts, only might.  I know my limits, and having either of those up over my head and running doesn’t sound like fun.  Yes, I can get Husband to help me, and plan to, but still.  I may end up on a ladder cutting down on the roof instead, but then that’d be awkward too.

Best suggestion for the tool to use for cutting out the window openings?  I kinda have my eye on some of those little corded circular saws, but they’re not especially cheap……

Bleh

Posted May 6, 2019 By Ruth

I already had my spring sinus crud, so I figured I was good till fall.

Except then Husband brought home his version from his work.  And spent a week miserable on the couch.  And of COURSE I caught it just as he was getting better.  Went in to see the doctor on Thursday with an elevated temp, mild cough, sinus pain/pressure, drippy nose, all the usual sinus crud stuff.  She wasn’t happy with me getting sick again in barely a month (but hey, I wasn’t happy about that either you know), prescribed me an antibiotic and a new allergy med.  Except when I got home and actually read the label I realized I’d tried that allergy med before, and it knocks me on my ass for two weeks while my body adapts to it, and then god forbid I miss even one pill because I have to repeat the adaption to it, so yah, not taking it.

Friday woke up, pulled off my cpap mask, and instantly felt short of breath.  Tried my asthma inhaler, and it made no difference.  Then the cough got worse, and my temperature climbed, topping at 101.7.  I spent the day on the couch with my cpap machine running.  By the time I realized how bad off I was my doctors office wasn’t answering their phones (to be fair, Spectrum had had a weird phone outage the day before, so it might not have been the fault of the doctors office).

Saturday I got ahold of the doctors office, and was informed that I needed to go to the ER.  Do not pass go, don’t try Urgent Care.  Ugh.  Spent 7 hours there.  Turns out that I’d somehow managed to let myself get way dehydrated, and it took two liters of IV fluids to get things back to some semblance of normal.

Except that when you walk into the ER, and you’re 40, overweight, tell them you feel short of breath, and your heart rate reads 137bpm they tend to panic and run ALL THE TESTS.  The attending doctor got me to admit to having “gas pain” for the last couple days.  So on top of the list of bloodwork, EKG, and chest CT with contrast, she added to the list a pelvic CT.

So, the heart rate and shortness of breath were caused by the dehydration, the IV fluids fixed that (and got me a stern talking to about the need to stay hydrated, I don’t normally have a problem with that, I really don’t!).  The EKG read normal.  The chest CT read everything normal.  The bloodwork read mostly normal, except for being dehydrated and an elevated white blood cell count.

The pelvic CT?  Well, “acute diverticulitis”, “gall stones”, and a “mild hiatal hernia”.  The hernia’s not a huge surprise, I’ve had acid reflux symptoms for years, though the way the attending doctor put it on my paperwork initially confused the hell out of me.  The rest of it though…..yay?

Today (Monday) I might actually be starting to feel better, though I have absolutely zero energy for ANYTHING.  I got halfway through watering the greenhouse this morning and had to take a nap.  God only knows how I’m going to get the garden planted as I’ve not managed to prep ANY of the beds yet.

I did manage to get the hummingbird feeders out.  And on the way home from the ER, I MIGHT have seen a Black Throated Blue Warbler in the brush next to the road.  I can’t find anything else that would match what I saw anyway, very much like this bird.  Chickadee-ish, but not chickadee-ish.  All black (though it was in the shade, so it could have been dark blue), with a white belly and white splotches on the wings.

And now that I’ve typed all that I need another nap……

Garden update

Posted May 2, 2019 By Ruth

Tomatoes are out in the greenhouse, melons have been started.

I need to start getting the garden tire beds ready to be planted in, I’m behind on them.

I’m alive!

Posted April 20, 2019 By Ruth

Really!  Just very brain dead.

The co-worker who had medical issues is back to work, however he shouldn’t be.  I’m not entirely sure if he didn’t explain his job very well to the doctor, if the doctor didn’t believe him, or if the doctor is an idiot.  To be fair, I’ve found that when you tell your doctor that you work at “big box store with orange aprons” they hear “I’m a cashier” no matter what you say afterwards.  I now tell my doctors that I work in a warehouse.  It’s a much more accurate description of what my job entails when it comes to physical demands.  So yah.  At any rate, I’m still working his job, hopefully only for another week, but I’m not holding my breath.  I’ve now found that the management’s apathy in regards to the folks on the sales floor is totally beaten out by their apathy towards the folks working in the receiving department.

At home I’ve been experimenting with sourdough bread again.

As much as I like a good homemade sourdough I’ve struggled with it in the past.  Struggled to keep it alive, struggled to use it, gotten frustrated by the discard-feed cycle.

This time around I armed myself with King Arthur Flour’s list of recipes for discarded sourdough.  Reminded myself that even if I didn’t want to do a true sourdough bread I could always add a scoop or so to my regular bread recipe.  And made a very interesting discovery about keeping it alive.  Every sourdough recipe out there says that once you get past the initial buildup you can use white flour to feed your sourdough.  And this is technically correct, you can.  However, feeding your sourdough starter with whole wheat results in the happiest sourdough starter EVER.  Wow.  So my sourdough starter is whole wheat.  It was an accident, I ran out of white flour and somehow forgot to buy more at the store, so shrugged and fed it with whole wheat, and wow!

isn’t that pretty?  That is a true sourdough bread, no added commercial yeast.  Specifically its KA’s No Knead Sourdough.  This particular loaf will be going with me to the family Easter party tomorrow.  Yum.

On the subject of spring: FB reminded me that on this date last year I got snow, so I’m delighted by the green grass I’ve got today.  In addition the Bluebirds are definitely nesting, though as of yesterday afternoon there were no eggs yet.  And I’m back to trapping House Sparrows.

I have good news, and bad news

Posted April 5, 2019 By Ruth

Good news: Yesterday I spotted several Osprey and a huge flock of Tree Swallows, which means that the birds, at least, think spring is here, regardless of what Mother Nature might say

Bad news:  Mother Nature is still confused.  This is my front yard right now:

 

Good news: the coworker who was out for emergency medical is planning on returning to work next week!

Bad news: with my usual impeccable timing I have managed to come down with my spring sinus crud just exactly at the same time as when there’s zero extra coverage to cover my absence.  I spent several hours yesterday bundled up in ALL THE LAYERS shivering with a fever before the meds kicked in enough that I could cut back.  The only good part of this is that I found another doctor at my regular doctors office who believes in KILL IT WITH FIRE, and I feel noticeably better today.  Hopefully I’ll be able to go back to work tomorrow.

Saturday was lovely warm.  Overcast and drippy with rain, but easily mid-60’s (F).  It was SO NICE.

Today?

*sigh*