Dad’s Alaska

30 December 2022

Here’s to 2022 a disaster preceding an even greater disaster.

At the end of each and every year of my adult life, I have been able to look back with some satisfaction at what had been accomplished not only by myself but my country. This year in retrospect has been and unmitigated disaster on the personal level. I totaled my 2006 Dual Cab F-250 on a patch of black ice. I had a utility trailer roll forward and pinch off almost a half inch of my left index finger. This cost me most of six weeks of prime Summer work time. I caught COVID and lost two weeks of work time. THEN as I became well enough to get out and get some of the work done, I caught the flu and lost another two weeks of work time. Then as I got well enough to get out and do some work on the property it started to freeze and snow. All in all I lost about half the Summer. I’m too damned old to be losing 2 1/2 months of my life. On the other hand, America is an unmitigated disaster. The invasion pouring across the Southern border is destroying America. The billions of taxpayer dollars going to the Ukrainian dictator Zelenskyy are putting us evcn further into debt. We’re like a ‘high balling’ freight train rushing past $31,000,000,000,000 (that’s 31 TRILLION) in public debt. That’s a debt we can never pay. Hence inflation. INCREASE THE MONEY SUPPLY which devalues the dollar and since the dollar is worth less and worthless we pay our debts in worthless paper. Millions of Americans aren’t even able to live ‘paycheck to paycheck’ any longer. The US Dollar is the reserve currency for the world. That means that countries value their currency, price and pay their debts in US dollars. When the money becomes worthless (very soon) the Chinese currency will likely become the Reserve Currency. The US Dollar will be good for nothing but wiping you posterior, if a paper dollar even exists. These scumbags are angling to make all of your money digital. That makes it even easier for them to manipulate it to their advantage. The only way to save US Dollar is to go back on the Gold Standard and wrest control of the money supply from the private company called The Federal Reserve. The Federal Reserve is neither federal nor a reserve. It is a bunch of the elites making themselves and their politician friends even more wealthy. We no longer print money. Nope, the Federal Reserve just deems it to exist. American is screwed and that means you are screwed. I’d like to see the government recall all paper money larger that a $20 bill. How would you like to be a Drug Lord and all of those shipping containers full of 100 dollar bills suddenly become toilet paper? Billionaire drug lords would suddenly be broke. They wouldn’t be able to pay their murdering thugs or the crooked politicians on either side of the border. I suspect that some of our Congress and Senate would suddenly become much poorer. What a wonderful thing that would be. Broke ass drug lords and scumbag politicians sleeping in tents on the street. One can only dream.

Fire in the sky but no smoke on the water

After much unavoidable delay and procrastination, I have begun to connect the new concrete pilings to the house. Well that isn’t entirely true. I have begun to attempt to connect the concrete pilings to the house. On the first set of straps that I attempted to install I found that the holes I had drilled into the metal straps were too low at the top. They were not going through the center of the beam supporting the floor and the eastern wall. This sent me back to the drill press. While attempting to drill the new holes the chuck came off the drill press. This set me back for more than several minutes. After pounding the chuck back into place I began to drill again. Then the chuck slipped off again. I figured out after much cursing and stamping of feet that the chuck had been put on in Florida when the metal was much expanded due to the ambient temperature being 50 degrees higher than today. I lowered the drill deck and with a 3 pound hammer and an axe head as an intermediary, I pounded the chuck on at Alaska temps. I finished the drilling just in time for the sun to start getting low in the western sky. It didn’t matter because all of the bolts I bought for this project were either too short or too long. Tomorrow, I’ll rectify that problem, if the building supply store is open. Otherwise it will be January 2 before I get back to this. You can’t hurry perfection.

I won the Ugly Sweater Contest.

The weather has been weird. -2.5 on one day and +40 a few days later. The wavy jet stream has the weather screwed up all over the world. I recommend electroverse.co, if you really want to know what is happening with this weird weather worldwide. We’ve had wet snow, rain, sleet and dry snow all in less than a week. The weather apps seem to be getting it right which is scary.

As a matter of convenience summer and I rented a dumpster from a company here in Homer. We get our water from these people, as well. Their water deliveries have been precise, on time and greatly appreciated. Their water guys chain up their trucks, if our short road looks too icy. They do this all of the time during the winter. It’s regular, not uncommon. The guy who is supposed to pickup our dumpster every other week deemed our road icy and too dangerous. I questioned the lady at the dumpster service and she told me that the driver that deemed our road too dangerous was the Vice President of their company. Their excuse was that it was a different kind of truck than the water delivery truck that comes in every three weeks regardless of the snow ice or lack thereof.. A water delivery truck is likely hauling, at least, 3000+ gallons of water at 8.3 pounds per gallon plus the weight of the truck or close to 60,000 pounds. I doubt that a garbage truck weighs in at anything near that. The driver, I was informed was a great driver with years of experience and as previously stated a Vice President of the company. I wonder if he just didn’t want to chain up because he’s somebody. Our dumpster is about 75 yards from the main road and on solid road bed at the edge of a heavily graveled parking lot. Mysteries. Life is full of mysteries.

2 January 2023

As you may have observed it is days later from the writing of the above until now. I hope each and every one of you had a fun New Year’s Eve. Here’s hoping and praying that our 2023 personal lives will be a better and that our country is somehow saved from looming disaster caused by arrogant politicians and really ignorant people. 2023 wouldn’t have to go very far to be better than the last three years.

This is a young cow and I took this picture from about 20 feet away early this last Spring.

Today, I assumed that the building supply store that charged me an arm and a leg for bolts would be open. That was an incorrect assumption. So I’m still stuck with short bolts that are too short and long bolts that are too long. Not that it really matters today. We’re having some major warm weather and the temperature has been above freezing for a couple of days now. This advent brings us back to ‘Mud Season’. I hate mud. I can do hands and knees in the snow and ice but mud, NOPE! I am not going to crawl around in the mud, even if I had the correct bolts. The trip to town was not a total waste. I picked up a few groceries and some vodka. The grocery prices were outrageous and the vodka was even worse. Summer and I will have to do the COSTCO/Anchorage 450 soon. We need vodka, wine, coffee, dog food, dog treats and some other less important stuff like food. The COSTCO/Anchorage 450 consists of 225 miles to COSTCO and then 225 miles back in the same day. This marathon 2 hour (We limit ourselves to two hours in the store) shopping spree is because of the dogs. We have no one to leave them with and no hotel will allow 4 small dogs. Yeah, we’re probably not smart as we keep adopting dogs that other people don’t want. This time of year this will be a 13-14 hour adventure on icy roads, some through some mountainous areas and some crazy, stupid drivers in Anchorage. And again we’re probably not smart to take this trip but even after expenses we can save $400-$500 over the cost of the same products in Homer. When we go we load the wagon, so to speak.

A warm day in Fritz Creek.

We have about 4 more months of snow and cold left in this winter and we’re going to buy 2 more cords of wood later this week. As I previously said we are in a warm spell. However, the really cold weather is in January, February and the first couple of weeks in March. Because of the unusual cold in November and December we’ve burnt a lot more wood than usual. We’ve burned nearly 3 cords. We have about 5 cords left but like that old saw “Better safe that sorry”. I’ve had more than one person joke that “If you haven’t had to burn the furniture to stay warm, you aren’t a real Alaskan”. I think I’d just as soon stay a real Alabamian.

That’s all folks.

Dad’s Alaska

26 November 2022

Here’s to the Red Wave.

Mine and Summer’s COVID tribulations are over now for a week or so. Summer now has the Flu which I’ll likely contract in a few days. The Mid Term elections are in the rearview mirror and the predicted “Red Wave” was not even a Red High Tide. The only Red Tide is/was Alabama football and they got their ass kicked a couple of times, I’m told. I was never good at sports. Most likely because I have absolutely no interest in sports. The last time I watched a complete football game was in January of 1967. I had just come home from 3 years in the Navy and old friends were having a AFL/NFL National Championship party. I just looked it up. As it turns out, that was the first Super Bowl and the last football game I’ve ever watched. I’ve seen snippets of games in bars, Alabama/Auburn moments on TV, but I don’t have the interest or patience to sit down and watch. I really, really have no interest or care who wins. I’ve told many people, “When the NFL starts sending me a paycheck, I’ll be more than happy to watch”. Politics are a much more interesting game. This is a game where winning and losing both have real life consequences. For example, assuming that for the next 2 years that the current flood of illegal aliens continues we will have some 11-12 million more people, mostly uneducated and illiterate. A great number of these people are criminals and terrorist enemies of the US. This flood of unwashed, illiterate, uneducated humanity will be greater than the population of New York City and Chicago combined. Or to put it another way the flood will be larger than the populations of the States of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama combined. Who is going to pay the cost of feeding, housing and clothing this human tsunami? Yep, you’ve got it. YOU!! The American taxpayer will be on the hook for everything. Liberal/Progressive Marxists will tell you that the government will pay. They seem to be disconnected from the fact that all of the working stiffs out in “Fly Over Country” are paying for that government largesse handed out so freely to these people who have invaded our country. There are homeless veterans, handicapped Americans and all manner of American citizens needing financial help far more deserving than these invaders. In addition to this tidal wave of humanity there is a tsunami is Fentanyl. This drug killed 50 TIMES MORE AMERICANS THAN WERE KILLED IN ACTION IN THE 20 YEARS OF THE AFGHANISTAN WAR. And that was just in the past year. 300+ Americans, mostly dumbass kids, die every day from this drug. The drug cartels are in charge of our border and our government is doing nothing to retake control of our border. Without a border we are not a country. The next election better be a “Red Wave” or our country is lost.

9:30 Sunrise in Fritz Creek

Haven’t gotten a lot done lately. It decided to rain for a solid week. The wet ground, finally, froze and we were again out of mud season. Mud Season seems to have been extended somewhat this year. This morning was a comfortable, if you were sitting by the wood stove, 18.4 F. I will need to get in wood later as were have burnt the stock inside. In anticipation of a really cold winter (See electroverse.co ) I am ordering 4 more cords of logs. It is a ‘better safe than sorry’ move on my part. A couple of years back we saw temps that were as low as -9F. That cold spell lasted for more than a week and we burned a crap load of wood. We ended the winter with an arm load of wood left in the tents. I would really like to not do that again. I’m keeping the fuel oil heater set at 61F to keep us from freezing when the wood stove burns out at around 3:00 AM. Fuel oil is now about $5 a gallon and we’d probably burn $15-20 in oil every 24 hours therefor fuel oil heat is backup heat.

As mentioned below this is one of the concrete piers that I need to attach to the house.

Last week I bought 20 feet of 1/4”x 3” metal strap from the local metal shop. I had it cut to various pre-measured lengths. This strapping will be attached to the concrete piers to secure the house to this new foundation. It is taking a lot of time as I have to drill holes to pass the bolts through and holes to put the big screws into the wood beam. None of it is ‘rocket science’ but it is time consuming. Some time in the near future, I’ll be going to the ‘big city, of Kenai. The closest Home Depot is in Kenai 85 miles up the road. The trip is to secure 4’x8’ sheets of 2” insulation for the stem wall and the skirting around the house. The foundation isn’t completed and the skirting will need to be removed next Spring to complete the foundation. Sometimes it seems that every job we do is a temporary solution to a permanent problem. The foundation is the major hold up in getting the inside remodeled. I am pretty sick of looking at walls with the studs and insulation exposed. Summer would like to hang some pictures and I’d like to not feel as if I’m living in a hovel. The full interior remodel will likely not be completed before next Fall. Patience is a virtue in which I am sorely lacking.

Me about this time 5 years ago after I found out haircuts were $25

We adopted another homeless dog. His supposed name was Rowdy. One minor problem: He didn’t know that his name was Rowdy. Summer and I were just supposed to take care of the undernourished skinny little critter for a few days until he could fins a “Forever Home’. He managed in about 3 day to find that home with us. So-o-o we ran through a half dozen names from Rudy to Critter. After 4-5 days of this name selecting process he became Charlie Brown. And, unfortunately, none of his fellow critters look anything like Snoopie but that’s not a hindrance in the naming process. The name Charlie fits his personality and he is brown. He’s half MinPin and Chihuahua. The white dog, Betsy Boo, is a Jack Russell/Chihuahua and the bigger tan colored dog, Buddy, is part Chihuahua and only the Good Lord knows what else. The dog in Summer’s lap is, Taco, a full blood, fat boy Chihuahua. Yeah, the couch is ugly but we’re waiting to finish the remodel before we buy new furniture. Don’t need drywall dust all over our new leather couch.

Flu inflicted Summer quadrupled dogged. The one on her shoulder is the new adoptee, Charlie
A sunset in Fritz Creek

That’s it. I’m going to fix this big refrigerator for Summer.

See ya later!!

DAD’S ALASKA

16 October 2022

Here’s to the professional politicians “May they all rot in hell’.

Biden, McConnell, Schumer, Pelosi, Swalwell, Schiff, McCarthy, Murkowski and all of the other useless life long political scum of both parties are the real problems in America. Almost all of them owe allegiance to China and all of them work against the American people’s interests. What was once a duty to be undertaken as a service to one’s country has become a cash machine for most of the 535 people who are supposed to be upholding our Constitution and serving the people. The vast majority do neither. They serve themselves and their big donors like George Soros, China and whichever BIG TECH OLIGARCH WILL write the ‘Big Fat Check’. I have often wondered how a Congressman or Senator who gets elected with a net worth of a few hundred thousand dollars becomes a millionaire while drawing a salary of around $200,000 a year. Don’t you ever wonder about that?? If I sound angry, it is because I am. I have spent much of my life advocating for simple things like fiscal restraint, smaller government, equal application of our laws and other simple Constitutional behavior by our governments. I really don’t think that it is too much to ask to have a politician put in jail for fraud the same as some two bit con man. Actually, most politicians are a lower class of human being than most two bit con men. It is past the time to ‘Throw the bums out’. It has, finally, come to the point that “We the people” must put our collective feet down. We cannot vote these bums out. They have too much money and power for “We the people” to be able to touch them. The only solution left for us is a Constitutional Convention as authorized by Article 5 of the US Constitution. In such a convention we can get Term Limits, Repeal of the 17th Amendment, Equal application of the law, eliminate and/or curtail some of the activities of the Executive branches of the government like Education, Reform immigration law, and a number of other things that need to be done so that the average American can reap the benefits of “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” guaranteed to us in our Constitution. We have traveled to a point where just the act of getting out of your own bed is likely violating some federal law written by some nameless, faceless unelected bureaucrat in a unknown sub-department of some useless branch of the Executive Department. It is time for a change. Not a change of politicians but a change of the Constitution to eliminate the career politicians and their power over our everyday lives. I was talking to a guy the other day about repealing the 17th Amendment. He wanted to know Why? I explained to him that, before the 17th Amendment federalized the Senate, the various State legislatures appointed the Senators for their State. That meant that there likely WOULD NOT be a career Senator. This is because of election changing of new people in the legislatures, even those of the same party, were likely to appoint a different person at the end of each six year senatorial term. You might suffer a career Congress person but not a career Senator. This makes sense because the Senate was to be the ‘safety valve’ that kept the Congress in check. Did you know that the Congress ( House and Senate) exempt themselves from many of the laws that they make for “We the people” to live by? For example they and their staff are exempt from the Obamacare debacle. That’s just one example and there are dozens, if you want to go find them. They have set themselves up as our Masters. Your primary purpose in life is to work and pay taxes. Whether you can feed, clothe and house your family or yourself is of no interest or consequence to the various government entities from local to federal. Go to conventionofstates.com for an education.

Sunrise on last Monday.

Dangerous Dan continues his frontal assault on the foundation of the ragged old house. Both the front and back of the house have been stabilized. He is now under the floor in mud that is over his boots and with the consistency quicksand. I was under there earlier this week installing insulation. At one point, I thought that I was going to have to abandon my boots and crawl out in my sock feet. I was near boot deep in the mire and sinking. I could not seem to free either foot. I remember thinking that “If I fall down in this I may not be able to get up”. My second thought was “I hope I can reach my phone so that I can call Dan or 911”. The situation may not have been life threatening but it was scary because the longer you stood in one position the further you sank. I had visions of the scenes from old movies where some poor sap stepped into the quicksand and the last you saw of him was an upraised hand and a few bubbles. However, the femme fatale always get saved. Since I was not feeling very feminine then or ever for that matter, I had serious doubts that Tarzan was going to show up and pull me from the muck. I have made it perfectly clear to all concerned that I will not again be installing insulation under there until the ground has frozen solid. The background on this dummy episode is pretty straight forward. I got out of bed, got dressed and made myself a cup of coffee. I looked at the digital thermometer and it read 22.1F. I surmised that since the temperature was so low all night that the muck that Dan had been working in would be frozen solid. Of course, as you already know my surmise was incorrect. This decision to go under the floor was based upon false assumptions and insufficient data not unlike all of the Global Warming/Climate Change decisions. I did manage to, with great difficulty, extricate myself from the muck. This was a lesson in BOB STEELE RULE #1 “Everything good or bad that happens to you is, generally, your own damned fault.” There is one good thing about decisions, if you made a bad one you can just make another. Unless, of course, you’ve jumped from a tall building or a high bridge. Every decision has the potential to be life changing and some are, unfortunately, life ending. I’ve done so many stupid things that I am amazed everyday that I’m still alive. A funny story I often tell when someone mentions my or their life span. It was my 47th birthday. I had driven from Mobile to Bessemer (Alabama) as I did every weekend for months to visit my father who was dying from cancer. At this point, he was bedridden. I sat by his bed and we talked about this and that. Nothing of any consequence. As it was my birthday, that came up as a subject. I said, “I never expected to live this long”. He was sitting up in the bed and there was a long silence while Dad was,apparently, staring at the wall in front of him. After this most pregnant of pauses, he looked over at me and said, “Hell, Boy, I didn’t think you’d live to be 21”. And that brings me to something my Grandma Byrd used to say, “Better lucky than smart”.

A new treated lumber ladder on the roof to service the stove pipe and the roof. The old one was not treated and had been there since 1982.

We are almost ready for winter. The wood is stacked in the tents, the loose items on the property have nearly all be stowed away, Summer and I have changed over to studded tires and my pre-winter ‘To Do’ list is shrinking daily. It snowed a bit this week. Very fine white stuff was falling out of the sky. It wasn’t sticking but is was falling. I am taking this early snow as a portent for a very cold and snow filled winter. The last two winters I have used a wheeled snowblower to clear our parking area and make paths for the dog to run in. The problem with the wheeled snowblower is that it often gets stuck and once it is stuck it has to be extricated by brute force. Putting it into reverse just digs it in even further. I’ll be 78 in a couple of weeks and snatching that 100+ pound hunk of iron out of the trenches it dug is getting to be too much. Summer decided that we would use our PFD (Permanent Fund Dividend) to purchase a snowblower on tracks like a tank. Dutifully, I traveled to the local Honda dealer 80 miles away and paid a $500 deposit on a $3800 tracked snowblower to be delivered in the last week or so of September. The delivery date was then pushed back until the first week in October. Since I had not received a call to come get my machine, I called earlier this week. Now they tell me that we will get the machine sometime in December. I am starting to believe that the dealer bet mine and other people’s deposits on some stupid football game and lost it all. I sincerely hope not because I’m old. Actually, the last couple of sentences were a joke except for the part about my being “old”. However, it seems that to Honda, we aren’t very important here in Alaska. Our equipment gets shipped last, if at all. With less than 800,000 people the entire state population is smaller than some medium sized cities in the Lower 48. The economics make sense for Honda but aren’t very helpful for us Alaskans.

If rocks were dollars we’d be billionaires

When I changed over to the studded tires, I found that the brake pads on the front wheels of the Subaru were very nearly gone. This coming week I’ll get the brake pads and new rotors. Then one day when it isn’t raining I’ll get them installed. One more little job before the snow flies. The Subaru had been running kind of funky for some time. I realized that all of the gas that had been put into the tank had come from the same place. I changed the gas location and now it seems to be running much more smoothly. They must have had some water in their gas or something. I won’t be buying gas there for a while. A couple of weeks ago the Subaru was running a little too hot. I took it to the local Subaru shop and found out that after the new radiator had been installed that the engine hadn’t been “Burped”. Who knew? Anyway the mechanic explained to me that Subarus have a quirk in the engines that traps air. Because of this you have to start the engine and let it idle for some time after the initial fill of the radiator. As the engine heats up the air trapped in the engine comes out and the radiator burps out a bit of fluid whilst releasing the air. The engine burped several times This process only took about ten minutes because the engine was already warm. The mechanic had a special funnel that fit tightly into the radiator opening so that no fluid was lost and after the final burp he filled the radiator to the top and put on the cap. I was very lucky that the engine was not damaged by the overheating.

Inside the big green tent with much stuff left to go to the Salvation Army

Summer and I spent a few hours yesterday (Saturday) going through the big green storage tent. This is a project that we’ve put off for many, many months. While the tent was closed the chickens were still able to get inside. They would climb and/or fly up onto the shelves, that I built to store glassware and other personal stuff, and lay their eggs. All of this flapping and moving around on the shelves, of course, knocked things off the shelves. There was broken glass and cooking utensils scattered around on the floor amongst the chicken droppings and shells of broken eggs. The plan was to go through the stuff and donate that which we no longer wanted or needed to the Salvation Army. About three hours into this mess we called it for the day. Today (Sunday) we will attempt to finish this filthy, disgusting project and make the run into town to the Salvation Army store. Five years ago we brought up a lot of stuff that we find that we did not need and now don’t want. Things that seemed useful or valuable at the time are now valueless and worthless in this new stage of our lives. Before we left Florida we donated a bunch of stuff (four pickup truck loads) to the Florida Sheriffs Boys Ranch. In retrospect, we should have donated everything except our clothing, a few pots and pans and some dishes. The trip up to Homer would have been way-y-y easier and exponentially less stressful. Again, I find myself quoting my Grandma Byrd. “Live and learn. Die and forget it all”.

A trailer load of green tent trash headed for the dumpster.
Kindling drying in Summer’s greenhouse. We’ll likely use it all before this winter is through.

Well, that’s it. We’re back to work. Winter is coming too soon

Another day on the Homestead

I have been extremely busy these past few weeks. I thought I could summarize it and bring you to speed. Although, most of you read my Dad’s postings you know what’s been going on on the homestead from his point of view.

I’ve been trying to get the greenhouse ready for planting, setting up for new bees, and getting ready for hatching eggs as well. So, here’s what’s been going on.

I was given 6 hens for Fabio. He has been very lonely since his girl DB was murdered by a dog. So, I posted an ad on Homer Communications on Facebook and it was answered with 6 hens! They are very very nice too. They come up to me and dad and I can pet them. They follow us everywhere on the stead. I really really like having them.

Fabio and Elvira
Dot
New bee bench
Bess are happy to have a new home

We built the new bee bench on a Thursday to prepare for the coming of the bees on that Saturday. And the bees are in place.

New goslings

We have new babies! I thought I would try to hatch out some geese! I did and I ended up with 4 cutie pies! They started hatching on Saturday, the same day I was picking up my bees. All four are healthy.

UPDATE: I sold them to my two best friends and they are doing well.

Little happy campers

During this time, I was also trying to get the greenhouse ready for planting. We had the geese and ducks over winter in it and they destroyed the bails of hay I was storing in there. Which means dad and I had to scrape hay and poop off the floor of the greenhouse. It was about 6-8 inches of hay and crap! It took us all day to clear it out. Then, the next day I raked the rest out and then dad and I shoveled more dirt into the house. After this exhausting part of the process dad ran the tiller through the dirt to mix it all together. It smells! Smells like composted goose poop, hay, and dirt. The smell of hopefully a successful garden.

After tilling the dirt, I had to furrow it. This was exhausting! It was me and a hoe. Once I finished it was drink thirty and I was done for the day! Since, we had all that hay in the greenhouse (which was a big mistake) I am going to have to use ground cloth to grow in to keep the weeds down.

At the beginning
Ground cloth and netting

Here I have started the ground cloth but I ran out of ground staples so I had to post pone finishing. I did get my netting up for my beans, pea and cucumbers!

Here I have planted all the bean and pea seeds. Cucumbers are started in the house. I also planted the Chinese cabbage. That’s the green stuff.
I’m almost finished planting inside. Yes. I know some of the plants look a little tight, they’ll be okay. I had to bring the tomatoes into the greenhouse because I have run out of room in my house for them as I plant them in 5 gallon buckets.
Here’s what’s left that needs to go into the ground.
In the house, I have onions, lettuce, kale, and cucumbers that need to go into the ground soon.

Weather is getting warmer. We are going up into the low 50’s and with the sun out its short sleeve shirt weather! I’m hoping in the next 2 weeks we get to the high 50’s low 60’s! Tank top weather! It’s already tank top weather in the greenhouse. We no longer have snow and mud in it’s place. The mud has dried up a bit on the property so that’s freaking awesome.

Squash and cucumbers that also need to go into the ground as well.
I repotted jalapeños and basil that will stay inside

There is still so much to do! I need to build some raised beds for the rest of the winter crops that I have started. As you can see with the pictures above, I still have lots to go into the ground.

I will be making the raised beds out of old wood slabs from a saw mill. It’s gonna look really cool! They will kinda look like log cabin frames. I’m gonna make 4 of them or maybe 5. I would like to dedicate one to really nice cutting flowers. I am so happy when I’m working in the garden. It’s my happy place.

Well, better get back to work! See y’all later.

Social Distancing: I don’t know what day we’re on!

Lots of stuff has happened and not happened. I give up!

Just kidding! I have been extremely busy with my plants and working around the house. I have hardening up all my brassicas, artichokes and onions. They now reside in the greenhouse.

My tomatoes, brassicas, onions, and artichokes.

We are melting rapidly and are just about out of snow. We have been left with mud and that’s okay. I am not gonna complain!

We have been waiting for spring and it has finally arrived. We can finally burn our brush pile! And so that’s what we are doing now.

Me and the fire

It was a glorious day yesterday as we started the fire. Sun shining bright, 55 degrees and warm, total short sleeve shirt weather. Today, we will try to finish burning. There will be a burn ban starting at the end of this month so we need to get our burn on!

Dad chillin by the fire
Music and hard seltzer. I buried them in what’s left of the snow to keep cold

We hung out and enjoyed burning in the sun and watching all the snow melt before our eyes. I am so happy that the snow is gone. Now I will have to change my tires from studded to regular.

3 days ago. Now its almost completely defrosted.
Friday’s dinner with Dan consisted of bear sloppy joes on top of tater tots and Romano cheese! YUM!
Fabulous Fabio

Well, That’s all I have for now. I will try not to be a stranger and keep posting.

Social Distancing (quarantine) : Day 14 -16

I have spent three days repotting plants because I still can’t use my greenhouse and the outside garden. I had to go to the feed store to get more flats and pots. While I was at the Wagon Wheel, I bought some asparagus roots that look like they are about three years old. This is good, that means they will produce large enough sprigs that we can harvest. My old asparagus is one year old now and won’t be ready to harvest for another two years. I can wait that long! It’s one of my favorite vegetables. But that can’t go in until the geese and ducks are out of the greenhouse.

It looks like I am going to have to move more plants upstairs so I can make room for new vegetables I need to seed out. Otherwise, I’m not going to have kale and lettuce this summer. It must be done.

Excuse the mess. As you can see the plants have taken over the living room.
Cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower
Brussels Sprouts, shallots, tomatoes and peppers
Basil, dill, cilantro and lots of tomatoes
Tom Thumb tomatoes
Three baskets of Tom Thumb tomatoes
Saw this little one while driving back from Dan’s house.

It was wild Alaska the other morning when something attacked and ate my hen Dead Bird II. I didn’t name her, my friend’s children did before they gave her to me. It stuck. There is no sign of her little body. Just lots of feathers and a trail of blood and feathers to the road. I’m guessing it was a dog or a coyote. It’s so sad. My rooster has been looking for her since it happened. I will get him a new hen when I think its safe.

Well, I guess that about it. Going back to work to get the bathroom finished and move plants to my bedroom.

Social Distancing (quarantine)’: Day 13 & 14

Day 13: I didn’t do much. It was a gloomy day and just didn’t do much. I did paint my vanity and stool one coat and needs to be done again tomorrow. Then, I went on my daily walk with the girls and had a few adult seltzers and hung out for a while. I love seeing my friends even though we are over 6 feet apart. I also went to Dan’s house for dinner. We supported one of our local restaurants and ordered take out. Alibi is one of my favorite places to eat. They have the best shrimp tacos! I am so thankful they can make it gluten free! So, my day was a whole paragraph. LOL

Day 14: Today I got a bunch of things done! I finally finished painting the vanity and stool. Tomorrow I will be finishing the dry wall and hopefully painting the wall soon. I, also, had to repot my tomatoes because they are getting so big! I almost didn’t have enough pots. I swear they were getting bigger as I was potting them.

Tomatoes on the right in bigger pots
Ran out of big square pots and used round ones
Tom Thumb tomatoes in hanging pots. They are already starting to get buds.
Brussels Sprouts and Shallots
Cabbage and Dill

As you can see. Everything is growing and I have no place to put it. I am supposed to be seeding out kale, lettuce and a few other things that I want to eat! Believe me. I’m not complaining, just a little concerned. Lol! Well, That’s all I got! Talk to you tomorrow! Stay Safe my friends!

Social Distancing (quarantine): Day 12

Today was a very gloomy rainy day. I painted the first coat of actually paint on my vanity and stool for the bathroom. I only did the one coat because I gave up on the day. It was just one of those days.

I really need to get a few plants repotted so they don’t die. We are still waiting for the snow to melt.

Tomatoes, peppers, and onions
Tomatoes and Brussels sprouts
Broccoli, broccoli raab, cauliflower, cilantro, dill, basil
Cabbage, tomatoes, cilantro, etc.

I also have a surprise! I did it! I cut my own bangs! #covid19bangs This is a terrible photo but I don’t care.

covid-19 bangs

I also installed the shower curtain rod and curtain. I took my first shower in my bathroom! It was awesome!

Slowly but surely it’s coming together! Well, that’s all I have for today! Hopefully, I will have more to say on the next blog post!

Social Distancing (quarantine) : Day 11

During yesterday’s cooking events, I also realized that I had run out of ketchup. This is a slightly big staple in the house. When I started looking around I realized that we were about out of mayo, bbq sauce and some other very important items that you must have in order for recipes to fit together. I have to go to the store AGAIN!

Turns out we needed a plumbing part for my shower and a shower curtain rod as well. So, off to the store I go! It was a nightmare! I think I held my breath all through the store only to take a fresh gulp when no one was around. I got everything on my list and a few extra stuff. I decided I wanted finger foods for dinner. So, I got some frozen home style meatballs, grape jelly and Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce. Tossed in the jelly and BBQ sauce in the bottom of my crockpot, threw in the frozen meatballs, stirred and called it good until dinner. I also made chicken wings! I like cooking them naked! No, not me, the wings you dirty minded people! LOL

I don’t batter my chicken wings is what I meant. I just season them with garlic salt and pepper and call it good! I fry them in lard. Yes, lard! These wings come out so crispy! To dip I use Hidden Vally Ranch Dressing and Crystal hot sauce. Delish!

Okay. I gave you dinner first so I guess I need to go on with the rest of the story. We got the shower completely put together. YAY! All is lacking is finish work. There will be trim where you see wood.

This is a close up on what the panels look like

I am so happy! It came out so beautiful. Thank you Dan!

Later, It was time for our ladies walk! Two Alaskan Brewery Seltzers and a group of women standing over 6 feet apart walking and having conversations to stay sane. LOL. I so enjoy it. I think this social distancing, children being out of school and no one is working has brought us all closer together as friends. It looks like its going to happen on a daily basis. We get exercise and don’t feel so isolated in an isolated neighborhood. Our houses are not close to one another like a normal suburban neighborhood. We all love it!

It snowed a little today and expect more tomorrow. Seems like a great time to finally finish painting my vanity and stool. Then I can work on finishing the drywall and get that sucker painted so Dan can install the vanity.

Well, That’s all I have today. It was a pretty slow day. Talk to you soon!

Social Distancing (quarantine): Day 10

Dan came over to install my shower panels and I had to go to town to get Dad more potassium, bread, and a few extra grocery and hardware items that we needed. I tried to keep it down to two stores and trying to stay away from other people. I just walk the other way if someone was getting close to me. It makes it very difficult to grocery shop when you keep having to change directions to avoid other people. If I got boxed it, I’d hold my breath. I carried my Clorox wipes with me so I didn’t contaminate my personal items like my purse, wallet and sunglasses. Then, I have to wipe down my car keys, car handles, steering wheel, gear shift, emergency brake just to make me feel clean.

After making it back from the grocery store in one piece and mostly disinfected, I unloaded the car, got everything in the house and put away. At this point I am starving and I need to eat before I go on a hike with my friends. No worries, we stay more than 6 feet apart the whole time. I needed to get some fuel in this belly because we blocked out 2 hours for this hike. It starts at the top of our main road and goes straight up before cutting across another road to get to this awesome snow machine trail that goes into one of our mountains. During the summer, its swamp area and can be a deep and messy hike. It seems the best tine is now!

Panorama where we decided to stop and turn around on our hike

The hike started off on flat snow covered land until you start a slow incline of elevation into the spruce. That’s where it got interesting. Trail markers were great! Old t-shirts, a shot ski, lanterns, street signs and fake booze hanging from trees. We loved it. We got up to the base of the mountain and decided to turn around due to our time limit. Most of my friends have children and have only so much time to have adult time. Anyway, we turned around and headed back. Tiana was mentioning when we get back to the flats that we should keep our six feet apart and do cartwheels on the snow at the same time. I haven’t done a cartwheel in 20 years! And it shows.

Attempting the cartwheel
Hurt my back attempting the cartwheel
Then, I just collapsed because trying a cartwheel after 20 years can be deadly

It was all fun and games. I decided that my other two friends can do cartwheels and I’m just going to jump!

So we came up with this!
Close up!

It was such a beautiful day! It was so sunny and warm! We totally needed this five mile hike! We also had a sun dog or halo around the sun.

Sun Dog/Halo

We didn’t notice this phenomenon until we were walking back. The only thing missing was our friend Jamie. Will definitely hike it again with her when she has her husband home to take care of the kids.

When I finally got home, Dan was just about finished with the shower and I needed to start dinner. The menu was Jalapeño Popper Meatloaf! It requires a whole 8 oz pack of cream cheese. Low and behold when I pulled it out of the fridge, half of it was eaten. I specifically bought it for this recipe. Two jalapeños, pack of cream cheese, a pound of ground meat, chopped bacon, onions, garlic, salt and pepper to taste. Anyway, Dad ate half the cream cheese. So, I had to improvise and grab the ricotta cheese from Dan’s house and add that to the cream cheese, then spread on the bottom half of the meatloaf. I did and added bacon and the chopped jalapeños to the cheese. Then, I put the top part of the meatloaf to it and drizzle on some ketchup. Turns out ketchup is gluten free. Duh!

The meatloaf was fantastic! Here is the recipe! My friend Jamie posted the link on Facebook. <https://lowcarbinspirations.com/jalapeno-popper-stuffed-meatloaf-recipe/&gt;

So, Dan finished the shower and it needed to dry. It will be ready to shower in as soon as Dad installs all the shower controls.

Well, I leave you with an awesome picture that Tiana took of her sister and I walking down the road towards home after our hike. Thank you Tiana for such a beautiful picture!

Thanks Tiana for such a beautiful photo!