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.

Dad’s Alaska

My 14th attempt at a selfie.

5 April 2020 Sunday

In the background of the above picture you can see the snarled wiring that I am attempting to unsnarl. There is much electrical to be done. The are connections in the walls that aren’t in boxes and were covered up by sheetrock or wood paneling. Just wire nutted together and left dangling inside the walls. All of these stupidities are going to require that new wire be pulled in. What I have done in the interim is to make sure all of the wire nuts are tight and expose the wires. If there is a loose connection getting hot it will be visible and not burning behind the wall out of sight. In have worried every day and night that there is some connection unseen that will start a fire. Rewiring this house is high on the list of things that must be done soon.

Still don’t have the Corrosion Virus. I’m not rusting yet. Did not sleep well last night. My knee was hurting and burning all night. Decided this morning that it is indeed a gout flare up. The balls of both feet are slightly achy which is a definite indicator of gout. The “golden years “ suck. However, I am quite happy to have these ‘golden’ years, even if the price is some bit of pain. I‘m working with the full knowledge that “this to shall pass”. The Bible says that “to everything there is a season”. This is my season of gout. I don’t, usually, have these flare up unless I’m sitting around doing nothing but eating and drinking vodka. Seems every time I park my carcass in the recliner for extended periods I get a gout attack. Like the old saw “Doctor, it hurts when I do this.” Doctor replies,”Well don’t do that”. Good advice. I’ve got to end this sitting around crap.

It is another “Bright, bright, bright sunshiny day”. Today the wind is blowing 25+ with gusts even higher. There have been some so strong as to shake the house. Those, I’m sure, were closer to 50 mph or more. The strong wind and the temp above 35F is causing a rapid melting of the snow. Places on the property that were completely covered in snow yesterday are bare ground today. The ponds should be fully thawed in a week or so. Break up will be halted by several days of temps being just above freezing during the day and down into the teens at night. The halt will stop the running river under the house and I’ll, at last, be able to finish the last bit of house leveling. With the house level the new kitchen can be installed. Of course before that we must remove the ceiling sheetrock and do the necessary wiring to make the house electrically safe prior to the kitchen install.

I found an interesting fact today. On average there are about 7500 deaths a day in the U.S. These are completely unrelated to the COVID-19 “pandemic”. I spent 15-20 minutes on the web searching major newspaper sites trying to find out about yesterday’s death toll. I could find almost all of the hysterical rhetoric I would have cared to read but not a single word about the daily death toll. It is either so high that they are afraid to publish it or it is so low that they don’t want to give President Trump the credit or that the various government entities would have a hard time justifying all of this ‘House Arrest’. I did find that 95% of the deaths involve persons who are already deathly ill from some other disease. So in my common sense brain parts, I am thinking that it is the former reason not the latter. Why is there no body count like Viet Nam or all of the other military conflicts over the past 50 years? I did not find a single news story that gave that number. I’m starting to believe that the actual death toll is minuscule compared to the number of persons infected. Common sense commands you to know that there are tens of thousands of undiagnosed cases. And, also, that the majority of those with the virus are getting well without medical intervention, This is as Shakespeare said, “Much ado about nothing” as far as I can see. If you are healthy and under 60, your chances of dying in this “pandemic” are very near zero. Maybe I’m being paranoid but this does, in some ways, seem more about government control of people than control of an infectious disease. This seems particularly true at the state and local level. Just sayin’.

A picture of today’s weather.

Much Later

Got off my duff and worked on Summer’s bathroom wall. She had taped and mudded the wall. Problem is she had no idea of how to do it. The remedy was to use the mud knife to scape the dried mud as smooth as possible and then use a wet sponge to smooth it out. I’ve been using the wet sponge method on drywall for decades. It beats all of that sanding by a mile. Of course, there are still an few spots to be sanded but you aren’t spending hours breathing in the sanding dust. A bucket of water and a tile sponge gets the job done,

I often feel like that guy in the old donut commercial. But instead of donuts it’s dishes. Take the dishes down, use the dishes, wash the dishes, stack the dishes, take the dishes down, use the dishes and on and on ad nauseam. We try, as much as possible, eat off paper plates. Yep, I am aware that some people think that it is bad for the environment. “You’re killing trees.” “Yes. But I’m saving water.” The next day someone is saying something different. You please one eco-wacko and anger another. There is no happy medium or common sense being applied. The truth is that there are more trees in America now that when the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock. There are, also, more deer and lots of more of other game in America than when the Pilgrims landed. I’m surprised that more of them didn’t starve to death. Management of our natural resources has been seen as a critical need and it is being met. BTW, I am truly sick of dishes. Maybe I’ll just start eating out of the pot or pan. Laundry is a lot like dishes. Maybe I’ll try to find some paper clothes or just go naked. Nope. On second thought naked isn’t an option in Alaska. Could have done it in Florida but not here. Oh well.

I think I’ve sorted out why I am having this gout attack. I drank over a half bottle of really good red wine on Friday and woke up yesterday morning with a sore knee. Drank some more of it yesterday. I barely slept last night because of the pain and now have pain in the balls of my feet. Since the red wine is the only difference in my daily diet, it must be the cause. No more large volumes of red wine. I will miss it. Maybe I can have a glass now and then.

The washer is playing that pretty little tune that says that its’ job is done and that now it’s my turn.

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 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 9

I got a lot done today. I put a second coat of Kilz on my stool and vanity. They are now ready to be painted with the final coat of white. Then, I can install the new crystal (plastic) drawer handle. I’m also going to paint the frame on my vanity mirror silver to match everything. It’s gold now and too warm. Since, I am going to paint the wall grey it needs to be a cooler color.

I also need to finish the wall. It needs to be sanded and remudded and then sanded again before I kilz that wall and paint it the beautiful color of grey I chose. I am very excited to get my bathroom finished. It’s getting close!

I checked on my honey bees, they didn’t survive the winter. We were so close. Well, better luck next time, I guess. This year I am going to try something different and hopefully keep my new bees safe. Honey is an income. I sure would like to have it.

I got to hang out with my girls as well. We all stood about 10 feet apart in a circle drinking White Claws! Tiana and I traded eggs. She has chickens and I have ducks and geese. So, we traded. I love that our little neighborhood can trade farm food like this. I still have some of last years honey. I wonder what I can trade fore that?

I had to repot some of my herbs today as well. They are getting crazy big too soon. I got to check that off my to do list, so that’s something.

Without repotting my dill it would have died.

Dad finished the wall in the kitchen and it looks pretty darn good!

Cheers everyone! Stay safe!

Social Distancing (quarantine): Day 8

Today was a good day! I finally started on the bathroom! YAY! I put the first coat of Kilz on my vanity and stool. I need to add a second coat and then they will be ready to paint with the shade of white I chose.

From there, I will continue to finish the wall and get that painted as well. Then, the bathroom will be ready for the shower panels and vanity top install. I’m thinking it will take me another 3 days to finish the wall and such.

I still need to check on my bees! I am going to try to do it Sunday before anything else.

This evening, I was trying to text Dan, but I kept getting someone else. It was like our wires got crossed. Every time I tried to text him, I’d get another guy instead. It was funny, because at the time I thought I was talking to Dan. It all started because I decided to text on my IPad instead of my phone. I was streaming off my phone to the tv. So instead of Dad seeing my texts blasted all over the tv, I tried my IPad. When I got a text back “Who is this?”, I thought Dan was being funny so I texted back,” It’s Summer. Your girlfriend. You have more than one? LOL”. Still, I am thinking Dan was being funny and said, “ I can’t keep track”. Then, he said his name was Jared and I thought this was still a joke, so I said, “Jared from State Farm? What are you wearing?’ At this point, I suddenly realized that this was not a joke and this was definitely not Dan. It’s my new friend Jared. I apologized and tried again. I still got him. Once I found out who he was, we have mutual friends including Dan. LOL!! I am so embarrassed. Stupid IPad!

My vegetable starts are growing extremely fast! They are going to have to be replanted in new pots. We still have a crap load of snow on the ground. I might have tomatoes and Brussels sprouts growing out of pots before they even get in the ground.

Stay tuned for Day 9. Stay safe my friends!

Self Distancing (quarantine): Day 6

Today I painted all the bee hive boxes in the living room where there is still no flooring. Good thing since I made a big mess on the floor. Lot’s of drippy paint since I had to really put on the coats to protect the hives from the elements. I choose black spruce green. It’s a really nice color. I wanted the hives to blend in with the rest of the area. Although bee hives are not an eye sore, I just wanted them to blend in more.

I can’t wait to get my new bees. They are still coming despite of the epidemic. There will be social distancing when I pick up my bees.

I feel better than I did yesterday. My heart has lightened up and I know I did the right thing by putting my drake out of his mystery. It’s a farm life and sometime you have to do what you have to do. In this case, I did right.

Dad and I were able to get the wall up in the kitchen. YAY! I think it makes the house look a little bigger. I can’t wait to add onto the house and get the living room I’ve always wanted. Then, I will have a larger eat in social area kitchen that is going to be awesome!

New wall being built in the kitchen

My upstairs bathroom has yet to be touched since the last time and I really need to get to it soon. I am hoping I can get to it tomorrow. Dad had to run the electrical and water to where the fridge is going to call its new home. So, I should have some time tomorrow to get it done. Oh, Crap!! I forgot I have to make a trip to town to help out a friend. I have to go to the store and get a few things. Then, I will get back and Lysol myself to death before doing anything else.

Well guys! I guess that’s all I have for tonight! Will talk to you tomorrow. Stay safe and disinfected. Good Luck!!!

Dad’s Alaska

14 March 2020 Saturn’s Day

Here’s to ya.

Today was a day of taking care of neglected chores and repairing the damned water situation. Yesterday we discovered that we’d lost all of our water, AGAIN. I cannot wait until we get our new 2500 gallon tank installed in the new basement. In the basement we can have hard piping and protection from heat tape failures and burst pipes. I am so sick of this half-assed water situation that I am very near running down the road screaming and pulling what’s left of my hair out. Repairing the water leak problem is plumbing. Plumbing requires, at least, three trips to the hardware store. Much to my amazement this project required only two trips to Kachemak Gear Shed for the necessary parts. While I was there I tried to buy a five gallon bucket of Corona Virus. The young fellow told me that they were out but later he was going to try to drink five gallons or a couple of six packs (which ever came first) of Corona Light. The chores consisted of picking up and putting away tools that had been used in the house leveling project., straightening up the tool shed, picking up trash, loose ends and other detritus. Level checks at the end of the day indicated that the house was dead level along the length and width. Success!!!!!

I still don’t have Corona Virus and only about 3000 people in the U.S. are known to have contracted this over hyped Main Stream Media disease. Only 30 have died and every one of them was already seriously ill from some other more serious disease. Nobody knows how many people had the stuff got well and went on about their lives. Common sense would indicate that for most people the usual symptoms were so mild, that most people would assume they had a cold or a mild case of the flu. 14000+ Americans have died from the flu this season. So far 30 have died from COVID-19. Where’s the panic, folks. AND stop hoarding toilet paper. It sure as hell won’t keep you from getting the flu or COVID-19.

15 March 2020 Sunday

Should have known that finishing up on Friday the 13th would not bode well for the leveling project. Got up this morning and whilst drinking my half gallon of coffee, I looked at the ceiling. I was horrified. Just eye ball alone told me that the house was no longer level. The house had, somehow, sunk an inch and a half across the forty feet of the front. To say I was disappointed would be a serious understatement. Dejected, morose, sad, gloomy, glum and more than a little bit angry would be more precise description of my feelings. Apparently, the jacking up of the house somehow allowed the pilings to be lifted. When the weight was put back on them they sank back to their rightful place. I would have gone back under the house today except that we have no water for me to wash the dirt and mud off at the end of the day. Tomorrow we will have water and I’ll be back at the leveling project. I am truly sick of this.

Today with no water to spare for showers, I spent the day cleaning house. I don’t know why it seems that if I don’t sweep daily there is about ten pounds of fine sand and dirt on the floor. I moved all of the furniture, dog beds and everything else in order to sweep the place clean. Cleaned the kitchen as best I could with only the little bit of water I could spare. With the dishwasher locked and loaded, I turned my attention to sheetrock and lumber lying on the floor and in the path of walking. I stacked all of that crap against the wall and swept up that unswept part of the floor.

There was a mess made in the downstairs bath that I cleaned up. While trying to install the new beam under the old sway backed beam beneath the bath, I found a mysterious wire. I had to tear out some sheetrock in order to trace the wire. This was a Friday the 13th discovery. I found that it was feeding the receptacle that ran the washing machine. However, it was way more complicated than that. I turned off the breaker for the washer but the red light on my ammeter stayed on. In order to find out which breaker to which the wire attached, I flipped each individual breaker off. The current detection device that is my ammeter has a red light on it indicating a hot wire. There is no need for current flow for it to detect voltage. As a turned each breaker off and then back on the light stayed on. I’ve been doing electrical work for 40 years. I held Master licenses in two states and I have never seen a circuit that would not de-energize when the breaker was turned off. This one would not turn off no matter which breaker you turned off. I knew it was routed to the main breaker panel. Therefore, it must turn off when the proper breaker was turned off. I put the main panel back into the wall (it was lying on the floor of the bathroom) and wired up every existing circuit myself when we bought the house. I knew that nothing was jumped or improperly wire in the panel. However, just to be sure I took the cover off and inspected every connection. I was mystified. With all of the breakers off. I turned them on one at the time. I worked from the right bottom to the top on the right. The top right breaker turned on the red light on my meter. The notes on the panel indicated (in my handwriting) that the 5th breaker from the bottom on the left was the washing machine. I turned off the top right and turned on the breaker that was indicated as the washer. The red light came on. I disassembled the receptacle box for the washer and found that the mystery wire and another wire were both feeding the same receptacle. Some idiot had connected two hot wires to the same receptacle. That they were accidentally on the same leg of the 240 volt service is the only reason there wasn’t an electrical fire. The potential for killing someone (probably me) was very large. You flip the indicated breaker and start a repair or replacement (wrong color receptacle) and you get a big old handful of 110v at several hundred amps and before the breaker trips you are dead. I have truly been scared to death that this place will burn down before I can get it rewired. Who knows what other half-assed crap has been done. I’ve found a lot of it but this incident just proves that there is very likely at lot more. In Alaska, outside of the cities, there is no such thing as a building codes or inspection procedures. People just build crap anyway they want and which ever way that happens to be convenient. Don’t have the right material. No problem. Just use whatever you have. A prime example of that is that there are four light fixture boxes in various parts of the ceiling in the main part of the downstairs of this house. All four are on one switch by the back door. I had to put pull chain switches on all of he fixtures so that they weren’t all on at the same time. We will be pulling down the rest of the sheetrock to rewire as soon as I get this disaster re-leveled.

Miss Suzy in the Hood….ie

I guess I’ve complained enough for one day. Goodnight. Sleep tight and don’t let the bedbugs bite.

Are we there yet, Spring?

Weather is as unpredictable as usual. It warmed up and then it snowed, then it warmed up, and then it snowed and now its pretty chilly and sunny. The weather this week should be sunny and cool (highs in the 20s). Yesterday was warm around 33 or 34. It started to get really melty and difficult to drive in. I’m sure you read my Dad’s blog about his encounter with the water truck and him getting two vehicles stuck while I was at work.

Speaking of work. It was a challenge to walk through sticky, melty and mushy snow. The dogs really didn’t care, but I was walking around like I was a staggering drunk. The roads were melting and it was really really slushy in places. You kind of slide around and look like you are drunk driving. Then, the road starts crumbling into deep pothole filled with melting water. So now, you are dodging deep potholes and yet again you look like your driving drunk. If you can’t dodge them and you have to hit them you are only make the potholes worse. Good Times!

The ducks think it to be spring. They have started to lay eggs again and I have found myself with a surplus of duck eggs. I have made gathering eggs a game. Due to our below freezing temps in the morning, you have to get to the eggs before they freeze and then crack. Then they are no good.

This was Sunday morning and I haven’t gather eggs yet and I was just thinking to myself that the geese should start laying as well. So, after coffee and such I went out to the greenhouse to check out the situation. Low and behold, the waterfowl finally made a nest! The ducks just lay their eggs where ever they are standing up to this point. So, someone got organized and the rest have followed. I walk up to the nest of hay and start digging around. I find 3 duck eggs and guess what?!?!

You guessed it! Two goose eggs! YAY! I’m so excited! I’ve never had geese before and let alone goose eggs! I think I’m gonna try to make a custard out of them in celebration. I took some pics so you can see the difference in the size duck versus goose. Now, these geese are first time egg layers so the eggs should get bigger the more they lay.

Today, I was in the store. There is no Toilet paper in the stores at all! It feels like this mass hysteria and people are prematurely panicking. Today at the local supermarket the paper toilet/paper towel isle looks like this.

All that’s left is crappy commercial TP that will eventually be bought out when the entire U.S. runs out of TP and we will no longer get shipments into our little town. It’s ridiculous. I’m not going to panic until I absolutely have too.

I searched Amazon for my favorite TP only to find the price gouging has started. So freaking ridiculous!

Worse case scenario when the toilet paper runs out, we can always install one of these!

Thursday was a pretty good day. The snow is slowly melting and hopefully break up is near. My geese are trying to destroy my car nibble by nibble. They have chewed the plug off to my block heater on Zippy and have proceeded to do damage to my front bumper by the fog light. They must be fenced in ASAP! Come on break up we need you!

Thursday night we had such an amazing sunset!

Friday was such a lovely day to work (walk dogs or more like hike). The sun was out it felt warm due to the sun reflecting off the snow. It has been so warm that I have started shedding my major winter gear for more lighter stuff. It went from Arctic Muck boots, to Keen winter boots and gaiters. Well, the gaiters were getting too hot and not letting my sweat leave my legs. I had to come up with a better solution. I needed something that would work like gaiters but would allow my legs to dry quickly.

It’s been getting so warm on my hikes that wearing fleece lined Carhartt pants were too warm. So, I have gone to Carhartt leggings which work just fine as long as I don’t have those sweaty gaiters on. Low and behold! LEG WARMERS!

Yes, people! I’m bringing them back as the number one winter accessory you need for post holing through snow! My legs stay dry and the synthetic material keeps the snow on the outside. I recommend leg warmers for those knee deep snow days. Besides, they’re cute! I’m pretty sure Dan thinks so too!

We found another leak in our water system, AGAIN! We found the leak, but have to survive without water for the rest of the weekend. Thanks Dan for the use of your shower, yet again! Monday we will have a water filled again. It really sucks, what a waste of money when the water just drains out all over the snow and under the water house. My duty for today is to shovel snow into the Homer buckets and melt it on the wood stove. Something to last us all weekend. It’s already Saturday so it shouldn’t be too much trouble to go one more day without.

Then, it’s time to start some spring cleaning. I really need to stop hoarding clothes and such that I’m never going to wear. I also wish I had time to try to finish my quilt. Maybe I will finish it by next winter. LOL

Okay. It’s time to be somebody and do some work around the stead! I leave you with cute pics of my dogs. So long readers and stay disinfected!

Dad’s Alaska

10 March, 2020 Tuesday

Not water

WATER!!!!

Yep. We, at last, we have running water. It turned out that the water line coming into the house had frozen because the heat tape had failed. I spent about a quarter hour ripping off the insulation that I had spent most of an hour installing last week. Got down to the pipe and found the defective heat tape. Took it off put on a newer heat tape, redid the insulation and in about an hour we had running water. Whooppee!!!!

On one of the dormers on the north side of the house had about a ton of ice and snow on it. The south side dormers are snow and ice free. Tried using a travel trailer jack stand tied to a rope to pull it down. Ten attempts later I had pulled down pretty much nothing. Took 4-5 attempts just to get the darned thing on the roof. After I got the range, I was pulling almost nothing off the roof. PLAN B. I went into the room with the overhang and used a 2×2 to punch the hanging ice off the eave. Didn’t get the snow off the roof but I did get the ‘widow makers’ knocked down. Some of the chunks of ice weighed near 5 pounds. Certainly enough to give you a massive headache.

Went to the kitchen and turned on the dishwasher. Heard that wonderful hum and the sound of sloshing water. How wonderful. There were several pots and pans that had been abandoned for lack of water. I washed them all with great joy and I really, really hate to do dishes. When I was just a teenager, myself and two brothers had to do the dishes nightly. It always seemed that my turn was almost every night even though it only every third day. Childhood things seem to hang onto you even when you think you’ve out grown them.

I have very nearly gotten the house level. A few pieces. of lumber and a couple of tweaks under the downstairs bath and this nightmare project will be over. Tomorrow I will go to the local lumber yard to procure the last of the necessary materials. This has been an aggravating trek through time and space and I will be elated to have it finished. House level means sheetrock, tub surround for the upstairs bath, new kitchen counters on new kitchen cabinets and best of all real flooring. Of course, real flooring means that I have to build and arctic entrance where everyone sheds their shoe.

Like winter before it Spring Break Up is bearing down on us like the proverbial freight train. This means that any of our winter projects that are still not finished must be finished in the next 2-3 weeks. It will be nice to be able to find those things that I lost in the snow like for instance my Pasquali tractor. I know it’s out here somewhere but the exact location is a mystery. Well, that’s not exactly true. I know where it is and the location of the parts tractor I bought to repair the tough little momma. I broke and axle last fall and could not get parts as it is old and the factory no longer supports it. I lucked into another tractor of the same model. It presumably doesn’t run and it has some transmission problems but the parts I need are ready to rock and roll. Rock and roll as soon as the near three feet of snow melts. By next winter, I hope to have built myself some kind of enclosed space so that I can do work like repairing the tractor.

This coming fall when the snowblowers are on sale again, Summer and I will be the proud owners of one of those little beasties. I have shoveled innumerable tons of snow to keep the access to the various buildings open. It isn’t that I couldn’t use the exercise and the cardio workout but it ate up time that could have been spent more productively in activities like sleeping, napping, dozing and restful contemplation whilst sipping vodka.

Our Alaska experience has been kinda tough. Not tough like going out into the bush and building a cabin and clearing the land tough. But it has been by modern standards ‘tough’. I suspect that most sane people would have abandoned this place long ago. I told an acquaintance who saw the enormity of the job “I don’t fail”. I’m sure he went away fairly certain that failure was a ‘fait accompli’. However, as we finish one of the harshest winters that they had here in many years, I am still determined to succeed by completing the renovation of and the addition on this house. Quitting is not an option although dying might be. Anyway, I’d rather die working than rotting away in some stinking rest home for old farts waiting to die.

Finally, got a shower tonight. Also ran the washer with a load of my clothing. Later this evening I will strip off my bed and put on new sheets and pillow cases. Clean body-Clean bed. Actually, I’m going to do that now it’s midnight and I can hear that bed calling my name. See ya tomorrow.