Sunday, April 26, 2009


Still keeping busy

Just a short note to let everyone know I will be back posting as soon as I finish working in the dining room ( or should be now called my Horse collection room) as the table and chairs were moved to the kitchen edition years ago, just the name- dining room- stuck from habit.

The boys finished doing the last coat of paint on the back of the house, so it is finally finished. But I am still working in the room inside. Today I set some of the house plants out into the large planter box on the side porch railing. Now, hoping it doesn`t get too cold for them during the night. I also managed to clean off the back porch and gets everything back into a better order. I did have quite a time trying to push an outdoor lead chord through a drilled opening on the porch. I needed to replace the chord so I have a light and plug in on the back porch. You see, even the outside house boards were replaced on the back side of the porch . Every time I tried to push the small plug end in through the wall, it would go through the double outside boards and then fall down between the inside and outside walls. Very little extra room, but I did manage to tape a very thin wood stick to the chord line and it held the line stiff enough to go through the outside wall, insulation and the inside wall. so, another problem solved.

Then I managed to take down the plastic from one end of my side porch so I could remove the wood cover I made to protect my long large flower box on the railing. I placed some of the house plants in the large box to give me more room to work in while finishing the room. I am hoping it doesn`t get too cold for the plants to be outside over night

Then had to quit as company showed up- a granddaughter, her oldest daughter the new baby that was born on my Birthday last Sept. and the baby`s proud daddy. They have just moved back here from Virginia and it is great having them back.

While they were here my daughter ( the mother and grandmother) saw her daughters car in my drive when she got home from work and came over. When she walked in and shut the door, I noticed something black in her hair- at first wasn`t sure if it was a spider or a fly. Turned out to be a fly which took off flying in my house. I still haven`t found it again. Never remember having a fly catch a ride inside my house in someones hair before. LOL. Ended up playing the game "Connect Four" with the 9 year old granddaughter , which made her happy. Once they all left, I had stopped long enough to feel tired, so quit for the rest of the day. There is always tomorrow and the work won`t go anyplace. It will be sitting there waiting patiently for me when I get up in the morning.

Well, I will post better once I get more work caught up.

Hillgrandmom, I haven`t forgotten and will do the Tag soon. I just want to take my time doing the Tag so need more time to do it in when I am not so tired.

Monday, April 20, 2009


April20, 2009-Rebuilding Back of my Home

Sunday, April 19th, 2009- Rebuilding the back of the house.

WOW, What a week this has been.

My youngest son, Ronnie showed up on Monday with all the boards needed to re-do the bottom half of the back of my home. I have a second story on the back of the house. First he had to pull off all the old bad outside boards and then we discovered that a lot of the main house boards underneath were bad and needed to be replaced. Then came more bad news. We had to replace 4 of the main upright 2x4`s in the outside frame of the house as the old ones were rotting. Today the framework is done with 2x6`s, but back in 1955-56 when we built our home, they used 2x4`s. So, in order for the new uprights to fit the rest, we had to replace the old 2x4`s with new 2x4`s. We also replaced most of the insulation in the back wall. A lot more work than we were expecting. I never before watched someone go that fast working alone with no help. After 5 days of hard work, the back of the house is now ready for painting. We had hoped to do some painting today, but the boards were still a bit damp from the rain yesterday. I even surprised myself. I decided to fix the back door and the screen door so there would be no air leakage next winter as I had this past winter. Originally the screen door was just added without a proper fitted casing. I removed the old casings and the other boards the door had shut against. Then I cut and replaced the door framework so it fits the doors the way it should. There were extra boards used to fill in the space and now their is just the one solid board and a better fitting door casing all around the three sides and both doors shut snug and latch tightly. While doing this, I also was doing a washing. Knowing how I hate to stop working until I finish what I have started, I hung the towels out onto the line to dry. Before my son showed up, I had started digging out a tree so it could be transplanted further from the clothes line. I knew I would be too tired to do more digging by the time we finished the work on the house. I also knew if I hung some of the washing out on the clothesline I would not do any digging while those clothes were drying. This way I would have to stop and rest when the doorway was finished instead of doing more digging.

Now I have to get used to using the door handle to open the screen door. Before the latch didn`t strike far enough into the latch to hook the door shut and I had to add one of those spring type latches to hold the door shut. A couple times I started to just push the door open and the first time I thought the door acted like it was locked. Now, I do remember to turn the door knob to open it. Even the lock works with the key unlocking it. First time in years that door has looked good and worked great. My son , the carpenter, told me I did a great job. How`s that for getting a compliment? Usually it is me telling him what a great job he did for me. I had done a lot of house re-pairs, but never tried making a new enclosure around a door before. There is also a tiny place where the side door isn`t sealed tightly, so that will be my next project now that I know I can do it ok.

But before I can start a new project I must finish straightening up inside. With all the pounding outside, I had to remove all the pictures, etc. from the dining room wall, plus move everything breakable off the top of everything and even pull furniture away from the wall. Years ago when we added on the larger kitchen, we didn`t add an upstairs over it. Kitchen is just the single floor section with a small attic space over it. We had just closed up the grocery store and turned the Business back into a Bicycle shop and no longer needed the addition on the front of the building. So, Walt removed the front section and added it to the house for a larger kitchen. This room is not as tall as the rooms in the rest of the house and I didn`t care for how it looked where the two ceilings connected. To make it look like it belonged that way, I decided to make a shelf going all the way across the width of the 8 foot dinning room ceiling about a foot down from the ceiling even with the height of the kitchen ceiling. The new kitchen is only 7 foot- about 1 foot shorter than the connecting room. I made the shelf so it starts even with the 7 foot on the kitchen. I added a trim to make the shelf look good. this shelf holds all my fancy dishes and plates-such as my Mother`s Day plate, the two 25th Anniversary fancy plates, the 50th Anniversary plate, plus more pretty plates. Some are hand painted that belong in the family years ago, two are Horse plates, one is a fancy cake plate that is quite old, plus others. All the plates hang on the top back wall of the shelf and the shelf itself holds more items. I tell all about this shelf to show more work that had to be done. I had to take down all the plates and all the items off that high shelf so they wouldn`t get broken from the pounding. Wish it was warmer out as I would have liked to re-paint the shelf and back wall while I had everything down, but still not warm enough to open windows for painting inside. So, that has to wait.

Yesterday I started washing everything from that shelf and washed the shelf and back wall, plus the ceiling over the shelf and replaced everything. Today I removed everything off two and 1/2 more of the dining room walls, washed the walls and cleaned all the pictures and other items before hanging them back on the wall. I still have one more wall to clean once I have taken down everything on it- which includes three small glass door knickknack cupboards filled with salt and pepper shakers-which will also need washing. I still have the glass door cupboard filled with horses and other small items to wash, plus all the crystal, blown glass, regular glass items, horse goblets, other size horse glasses, musical Horse items and other items that sat on top of the bureau and on the top of the double glass door floor horse cabinet. I never realized all the work I would be doing just from replacing an outside wall. But I did need to take down anything that could break. And I never could put them back up without first cleaning them. Once you start on a room, the rest of the room needs the same cleaning. Can`t wash one wall section without washing the rest of the room.

Did stop for a few minutes after cleaning my organ and putting it back against the clean washed wall. I ended up sitting at the organ and playing music for about a half hour before getting back to work. Nothing breaks up hard work like enjoying oneself doing something you enjoy.

One of my twins showed up with Ron today with his paint sprayer. They were hoping to do the primer paint on the back of the house today, but the wood was a bit damp from the rain last night. Might rain the rest of the week, so might be the week-end before they can paint. Should save me some fuel cost next winter.

Guess I should add on that I ended up recalling something Walt used to say to me whenever I was working hard for hours doing something. He was always telling me to " sit down and rest before you get hurt". Well, while pounding in those small finishing nails , I ended up hitting my left hand middle finger with the hammer. Ended up with a blood clot that measured about 1/2 " long and about 1/4" wide on the left corner of the tip of the finger and the whole end of the finger was discolored. That was three days ago and I have been careful not to break the blood fester so the pain has already left. Now it is like the old saying- It never hurts unless I touch it. Ha Ha. A few more days and the finger should feel back to normal. Discoloration has already left. Walt always said I do things differently than most people. I cannot use my thumb and 1st finger to pick up or hold things due to the arthritis putting my joints out of alignment. So in place of the first finger, I use the middle fingers with my thumb to do things, or I use the 1st and middle finger to pick up many things by squeezing the fingers together around the top of bottles, etc. As my Dad always said, "Where there is a will, there is a way". Yes, if you wish to do something bad enough you can usually figure out a way to accomplish it. Of course that should only be when doing things you can feel proud of doing. Wonder where the saying "doing things bad enough" came from, when this time the word "bad" means wanting it a lot.

This reminds me of what one of my Dr`s said to me about a week or so ago. He asked me how I manage to do things with my hands in such shape. I showed him how I use the two fingers for things others would use the thumb and first finger together for and how I keep a pair of scissors and a pair of pliers in a kitchen drawer. I cannot hold bags of food tight enough to tear off the top of the bag, the bad just slips out of my hands, so I use the scissors, can`t pull up the tongue in my shoes, so use the pliers for that, and so on. Dr told me I was very resilient. Must have meant being flexible, so guess he is right. Maybe I am just too stubborn to stop trying, or maybe I just learned not to give up from watching my parents keep working hard as they aged. I am already almost 6 older than my Dad reached, but my mom was 4 days short of being 91 years old. She was still putting up wallpaper in her early 80`s and still on a Bowling Team then. She never slowed down very much until the year she broke her hip and ended up with a hip replacement. With my help, she was still able to get back walking with the use of a walker. I knew she could have walked without it, but my fear of her falling again kept me from saying it to her. When she first came home from the Hospital she asked me if I thought she would ever be standing or walking again. I told her-before I was through doing her exercises with her - she would be on her feet walking, but that she might need to use the walker for security from another fall. I would often see her taking a few steps without the walker, but for going very far she did use the walker. I spent every day the first three weeks doing her exercises with her and I was as happy as she was when all our hard work paid off so well. I will always feel happy knowing I was able to help her manage so well.
Still so much work to finish doing before the dining room is completed. Actually it is not used as a dinning room any more because years back we added another section to the kitchen to hold the table and chairs. It now holds my organ, daybed, horse collection and other items- but mostly filled with the large horse collection. Many of the items were bought by Walt and my kids, gifts from my grand kids and gifts from my sisters and brothers and a brother-in-law. I bought very little, but some are worth a lot in money value, but all are worth a lot in memories.

Guess I should stop writing and get more work done. I made a new frame for one puzzle that I want to hang. Waiting for the glue to dry so I can stain the frame before adding the picture puzzle .

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Friday, April 3rd, 2009

Ever feel like God must be trying to protect you from yourself? Today I decided to see if
I could get some of the leaf raking done. Weather report says rain this evening. I figured it would
be a lot easier to rake before the leaves are soaked and matted on the ground. Plus being wet makes them heavier and harder to rake. I fed the dog, filled the bird feeders and headed outside to rake. I started raking about 8 AM and managed to get the front lawn and part of the 2 lots on the other side of my home raked up. Then I noticed my daughter and her husband already had bags of leaves waiting for the town to pick them up. That told me this must be the week the town is doing the spring pickup. I must have missed the notice that is usually in the newspaper.

So, I stopped raking because I do not bag my leaves for the town to pick up because I have a three section compost bin that I save my leaves for. So, I can rake the rest anytime. But, I had a large pile of tree branches to get rid of. I often wished I had one of those mulch machines that chew limbs up to use in compost . But, since I don`t, I have to cut them up small enough for the town to put through their chopper. I finished cutting them small enough and then made four trips carrying all the branches out into a neat pile near the road. By the time I had finished doing this job, I started to do some more raking. I knew I was getting tired and should stop, but wanted to get more done.

Well, no more than I started raking again it started sprinkling, so I knew I had to stop and put everything away before it started raining harder. So, I put the wheelbarrow away in the shed. Never ended up using the wheelbarrow, but had planned on using it to carry the raked leaf piles to the compost bin. Then I remembered how much easier it was last year when I used an old bed sheet. So, this time, instead of using the wheelbarrow , I again laid the sheet on the ground, raked the leaves onto the sheet and carried the leaf filled sheet and dumped it beside the compost bin. Made four trips and the leaf piles were all cleaned up. So much easier than trying to keep the leafs from flying off the wheelbarrow with each tiny breeze. Also much faster using the sheet as I can rake the leaf piles onto the sheet much faster than I ever could have picked up the leaves, put them into the wheelbarrow, pushed the wheelbarrow all the way to the compost bin and then dumped it with every load. Also the sheet holds more leaves than the wheelbarrow can which means less trips.

To get back to the rain. I hurried to take care of everything. Put the wheelbarrow away, took care of the rake, my garden work gloves, and the large limb cutting shears, plus the phone I always set on the porch so I will not miss any important phone calls. By the time the rain was coming down harder, I just grabbed the sheet, shook it good, picked up the phone and made it onto my back porch. Not quite fast enough, so I had to get out of those chilly damp clothes. Then I decided I deserved a rest. I feel I should be thanking God for bringing the rain when he did instead of tonight or I might have kept raking till I had done more than I should have.

Funny how you usually find yourself feeling better when you have accomplished something. Yesterday I was on pins and needles as the saying goes. My only Aunt had an operation to replace the battery in her heart machine- monitor. or? She will be 89 years old on Sunday. Her Birthday is also her Wedding Anniversary date. So having lost her husband just before Christmas, this will be her first Anniversary without him. They would have celebrated their 68th Anniversary. Her Birthday, which should be a Happy day, will be a sad day spending her Anniversary without my Uncle. I was relieved when my cousin Tom phoned me yesterday afternoon to let me know the op was over and they were back home and that everything went well. I was down visiting her the day before and she was having trouble getting enough air and was feeling light headed and a bit dizzy. The new battery should get her heart beating faster and solve her other problems. She was so scared before the op, but she should feel much better now that it is over.

Yesterday my twin sons- Walter and Roger- turned 54 years old. WOW, that made me remember how old I was getting. Next, I remembered their older sister will be 57 in September, shortly after my 78th birthday also in September. Boy, how time does keep flying by.

April 4th, Rained again today. Said possible snow, sure glad that was wrong. Have seen enough snow and shoveling for this year. So, can`t work outside. The rest of the leaves will have to wait till another nice day comes along. Going back down to 31 degrees F again tonight. Can`t wait for some warmer weather to arrive and stay for more than a day or two. Garden seeds sprouted and are starting to grow taller. Looking at them makes one wonder how those tall skinny plants will eventually grow into tall thick stemmed strong plants. Every year when the plants first start growing I get impatient to see them growing stronger so they can amount to the large great producing vegetables I look forward to having. Then I remind myself they start this way every year. Will have to keep them inside until after Memorial Day before I can set them outside. Can have a frost until then which could kill the plants. So, they still have another 7 weeks to grow stronger in. Every year i look forward to what i call "My Stand-up Garden". I use the Earth Boxes and made standards to sit the boxes up on, so I can just stand up and walk around the boxes to take care of the garden plants. Always have good luck using the earth boxes. Glad someone invented them, or I would have had to give up gardening when I could no longer work the large regular ground gardens.

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