primsong: (threejo hug)
2017-09-03 08:46 am
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Home times are very welcome

Hubby is home for the long Labor Day weekend plus a couple extra days on either side of it, nice to have him around at least for a bit. Too bad I have so many things that need fixing on the house before the rains come back that he's kind of just having to be a drive-by handyman. I am so grateful for every bit of it, though - he even went up and cleaned all the needles off the roof yesterday and didn't seem to mind while I would have been a bit freaked out running around up there.

Today is Fix the Leaky Outdoor Faucet day, which will be a great disappointment to the little patch of green plants around it in this summer heat. I potted a volunteer Rose of Sharon and was pleased to find it was a survivor of one that died last year so it's a different color than my surviving shrub.

Also, my Italian plums are definitely ripening up like mad. Got my spiced plums put up, taking a huge metal bowl of them to church this morning for folks to take some home. Yum! I felt very picturesque picking plums in the sunrise, gathering them into my grandmother's old calico apron over my church dress.
primsong: (penguin question)
2017-08-28 04:03 pm
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Amazing disappearing dirt

Wow, that dip at the corner of the house where the broken gutter washed everything out this past winter is even bigger than I thought. It didn't look like that much to fill and tamp down when I started in on it but I've now fed THIRTEEN buckets of dirt into it and I'm not sure it won't need more after I tamp some more and level it. Holy cow. It was like a funnel right into my foundation. Thank goodness I have a friend working on a deck who let me have clean fill dirt.

It looks like SO much dirt but when I put it in there and spread it around it's amazing how it all just kind of disappears and then there you are, still with a hole to fill. Now I get to figure out how to fix the gutter itself, adventures in home ownership never cease.
primsong: (snoopy wag)
2017-08-27 07:03 am

New Steps for house and for moi

One of those miraculous amazing old gentle men from my church came and helped me install the boards for my front steps because I was concerned I'd get them crooked and someone would trip. They look fabulous! And golly he was fast - I'm still carefully tap-tap-tapping away at the nails to tack down one end of the boards and there he is with over half of his side done already. I am SO grateful!

Also, "I did the thing!" and pat myself on the back, which was performing a solo dance up in Ilwaco and it went beautifully. My daughter filmed it on her phone - not perfect, of course, but I'm surprisingly pleased with it. She got me to put it onto facebook (I rarely use fb) so she could share it. The Lavender Festival folks even transformed a tool shed into an amazing dressing room for the dancers and all the quaint outbuildings were decorated with beads, drapes, persian rugs, etc.

primsong: (tarzan)
2017-08-15 05:27 pm
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Rotten boards and Dip in Road

Still poking away at repairing my house for eventual sale, learning all kinds of stuff - with Hubby down in CA I am free to run amok with power tools unsupervised, hee hee....

Finished replacing the rotten boards on the back deck with some caveats on it being 'successful' - I can't figure out why some of them refuse to lay flat when the boards themselves are not bent and the under structure was still sound. Better luck, I hope, with the rotten boards in the front steps that are next, I have them cut, sanded and half-stained in the garage at this point. Woot!

Busy chipping away at our very hard soil trying dredge up enough dirt to fill a dip the torrential rains this last spring dug by one corner of the house. Got a chunk of new gutter so I can do my best to replace the bad gutter section responsible for that - hope I can figure that one out, as the October Rains will be here before I know it. Also learned how to play with the air compressor so I could get the car's tires back up to snuff. ;-) Learned air compressors are fun!

Hope everyone else is also getting some of those summer projects out of the way while they can.
primsong: (poop)
2017-08-02 04:56 pm
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I guess this makes me an Official Dancer

I'm signed up for solo performance at an upcoming Lavender Festival, it's an outdoor stage at the coast so I'm not risking veils in the possible breeze but I made some nifty silk streamers for my wrists. I'm a slow bloomer, I guess - I've been dancing for eight years now but only performed as part of a group, so this is kind of a graduation to another level, where you need your own 'Nom de Dance' to register and get to pick your own music.

I'm happy and a little freaked out all at once, but it's good for me like vitamins for the soul.
primsong: (ship)
2017-08-02 04:43 pm

Football dancers and Marshmallows

Golly Moses it's hot today - 102+ at the moment and supposed to hit 106, unusually toasty for here. I've been working on replacing rotten boards on my back deck but it's too hot to be outside so I ended up learning to make quick no-corn-syrup marshmallows. These things Happen when I end up in my kitchen unscheduled.

Did a recipe mash-up and made it with 3 pkts plain gelatin softened in 1/2 c. cold water. Added a generous dollop of vanilla, a dash of salt and about half a cup of honey then 3/4 c. boiling water. Dissolved, cooled and whipped with beaters for 15 minutes - ta-dah!

Ate too many marshmallows. I regret nothing. Wish I had graham crackers.

Tonight our dancers are going to the local high school to teach the football teams some Greek dance steps, we go each year and the coaches swear it helps the teamwork and footwork. O-PAH! They sent us a message promising they'd have the A/C cranked up.
primsong: (lunch)
2017-07-07 01:16 pm
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Blueberry time

Went out and picked 2 gallons of blueberries this morning, now they're freezing on trays so I can bag them up without them all sticking together into a lump later on.

While picking a young family went by me with two little kids "helping" pick (Look what I got! Look! Look what I got! Look! I got some! Look! I can pick A LOT!) and the parents going along in good humor (Yes, I see. Yes. That's a lot all right. Berries! Yes. Pick the blue ones. You have berries. I see. You picked them! Good job. Now let's pick some more. The blue ones.)

As they were paying for their berries I could hear him (he was too short to see over the bushes): "I ate a...a...GALLON of blueberries! Weigh me!" - then he climbed into their car jauntily calling out "Have a BERRY NICE DAY!" while laughing at his own joke. X-D

Happy summer fruit time everyone!
primsong: (percy lud love me)
2017-07-03 09:06 am
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Perhaps a Trebuchet would Help

Well, my grown son adapted to mostly having to buy his own food so far by mostly just eating what he still has access to - in this case, he is essentially living off scrambled eggs and rice and strangely content doing so. Still no job, little signs of actively looking for one. He had one lined up and muffed it by missing the deadlines for their background check info - I am ready to stick a 4th of July rocket in his rear and send him out the door that way at this point.

On a better note, today I get to teach myself to cut tiles so I can finally fix the surround on my fireplace that has had two blank spots where cut tiles fell off over the years. I did also let my son know that this house might be on the market as early as next year and he will not get to move with us wherever we go. :-p
primsong: (threejo bessie)
2017-06-11 04:18 pm
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Dancing Geeks

One of the dancers in our troupe showed up recently with a custom outfit - a blue ghawazee coat done up to be the TARDIS, matching earrings, harem pants made from cotton with the pattern of the "Vincent" swirl artwork featuring same - and a homemade Four scarf. Now she bounced over to me to lend me three Big Finish eps with Ten and Donna (with commentary on how she despises Rose Tyler). Hee! Another one has a Star Trek costume and dance routine including producing tribbles from a concealed pocket and using them like hand candles. The geekery apparently permeates every part of life it you wait long enough.
primsong: (jo keys)
2017-06-11 03:26 pm
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Roses for the start of Summer

We had our last graduation event for my youngest's school chums, the ones who were Freshmen when she was a Senior so we worked with them in drama, etc. and got to know them. End of an era with her school in a way as most of the amazing older teachers she had that were so influential are all retiring as well now. Good people, the kind that pour their lives into those kids and it really shows, the kind the kids still talk about when they are old themselves.

The roses are all so tall and abundant this year! My yard is going crazy with blooming things so I cut back two big bouquets of miniature roses to give away to people at church this morning. Now I've dragged out my dehydrator and loaded it up with rose petals for a friend who adds them to her homemade soaps, the house smells heavenly with drying roses.

Hoping all is well for everyone as we all wade into another summer together.
primsong: (ladybug)
2017-05-29 10:17 am
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Miraculous rec

So, my daughter introduced me to "Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir" which she discovered while learning some French - hee hee! Yes, the episodes are predictable and have about as much content as a bag of potato chips but I'm finding I'm quite enjoying the characters. Ended up watching the entire first season on Netflix over the course of a week, quite pleased to see the second season is supposed to be out this summer. Also, I realize now I'd seen their 'miraculous' sidekicks as keychains at some point but didn't know what they were then.

You do have to allow that in this universe the "Superman Effect" is functioning, i.e. that Clark Kent's glasses have the ability to somehow keep everyone from knowing he is Superman. The two leads work as a superhero team without knowing each other's identities but are also classmates at school - she has a crush on him as her classmate and he has a crush on her as Ladybug but they never figure out they are the same people because....well... because a mask changes everything? The only explanation given is "magic" - works for me.

I get the distinct impression that the illustrators just really like to draw Paris. Also, it's way better in French with subtitles than with the dubs. Want some light superhero fun? I recommend!
primsong: (flower)
2017-05-29 09:43 am
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Greenhouse Project nearly done!

Almost there, all I need in a second coat around the base and cleaning off the roof, plus fixing a couple cracks in the roof panels. Yay!

Here's some pictures just 'cause I'm happy about it )

Much more presentable - and functional - than before.
primsong: (freshly dead)
2017-05-21 11:51 am
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Tomb of the Greenhouse Bird

Took a shop vac out to the greenhouse to suck all the cobwebs, dirt, lichen and other crud out before coating the inside with wood preservative - it has two shelves of spaced apart slats with an aisle between them, the planks have a corrugated trough underneath to catch drips and such.  Going along poking the vacuum nozzle in wherever it would fit and it clogged.  Pulled up the nozzle to see what was clogging it, expecting a wad of moss or something.

It was a bird skull.

Looking down through the slats I could see the flat remains of an entire bird skeleton with cobwebby, dusty feathers.  How in the world did it get down in there? The wings were spread so it must have been trapped alive?  It was long ago either way.  The Tomb of the Greenhouse Bird. 

My son considered the skull.  "Man, that's totally metal." 
primsong: (lunch)
2017-05-20 06:40 am
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Nest booting, part II

My son was transitioned to buying his own grub recently but thus far has been chowing down on what he started off with as if there was no worry about that.  Then it finally happened:
Son: "We're out of milk."
Me: "You can buy some if you like, I don't use milk."
Son: . . . . . "I really, really want mac and cheese."
Me: "If you have some quarters you can get a box of mac and cheese for about 75 cents."
Son: . . . . . (makes a peanut butter sandwich from his remaining half jar of peanut butter for dinner)

The following morning he gathered his bag of cans to turn in, went to the store and returned excited because he'd gotten a half gallon of milk on sale.  It seems like a small thing, but to me it was a tectonic shift - it's the first time he's grocery shopped for himself, entirely on his own impetus with entirely his own money.  Those can refunds would have been used to purchase soda or pizza before - now he's excited that he has a singular box of mac-and-cheese.  This is good!
primsong: (cat hug)
2017-05-20 06:33 am
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Beautiful Kitty works for me

I recently realized from the way my cat responds that while her name is Pi, she believes her name is Beautiful Kitty.  It has made me suddenly self-aware of how often I greet her as "Hello, beautiful" and "Come up here, beautiful kitty!"  Now that would be a nice sort of nickname to acquire, no wonder she has such confidence in our servitude to her.
primsong: (medieval crowd)
2017-05-16 01:34 pm
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Ancient toddlers

At a shop earlier, toddler in cart in front of me having a meltdown.  Exasperated mother finally says "Atticus, will you please quit crying?!"

Atticus?

My son recently encountered a wee child named Brutus. This is an interesting trend, I like it better than soap opera characters I must say, at least the history the namesakes echo isn't fictitious. 
primsong: (starry sky)
2017-05-05 12:40 pm

My Sprog is going to Cambodia

My eldest came by to pick up her official papers we keep in our safe because she needs to expedite her passport renewal all of the sudden - she's going to Cambodia on a missions trip in June!

She's always had a heart for the people of Asia so she's excited at the opportunity. Says "I've been studying their history and language, it has a lot of the same sounds that Japanese uses so I'm picking it up." Now I get to be the gathering point for whatever monetary support she can wrangle on short notice to cover the passport, shots, plane ticket etc. She needs 3k, we'll see how it goes.

Life is never boring, is it?
primsong: (panda bounce)
2017-04-29 07:06 pm
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Booting off the Edge of the Nest

My now-grown son has been reluctant to follow through on applying for work and had apparently grown quite comfortable in the nest - too comfortable...so I told him "Congratulations! You graduated!"

Explained that he was graduating from being a child in his parent's home to a paying adult renter. He starts paying rent in June - I cleaned out a kitchen cupboard for his food and a section of the freezer for him and let him know he is on his own. He has access to some staples and spices should he want to bake, etc. - I'm trying to be reasonable. Rent goes up $50 every six months til it hits lower market rate.

Sweetened the deal with letting him know this also means his bedroom furniture transfers to his ownership and that I will no longer comment on the state of his room or the state of his employment (or lack thereof). So far he's taken it fairly well, even when he only had mac-and-cheese available for dinner, and he's started applying for jobs.

Whew! My other two flew out on their own, but sometimes they need a little more encouragement.
primsong: Danny Kaye and Basil Rathbone (jester get it)
2017-04-29 06:57 pm
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Greenhouse Project continues

My old greenhouse is slowly rotting into the ground, so I'm working on bringing it back from the dead. So far I've located the siding paneling I needed and got the guy at Home Depot to cut it into thirds for me, then cut the smaller bits I needed at home - only working saw I had besides a hacksaw was a jigsaw, so the cuts are a bit wobbly in shape, oh well.. .that's why the Good Lord made caulking, right?

Was very pleased with myself for managing to bevel all the 2x4 ends I needed with the miter box, now those pieces have been sealed and stained and are drying in the garage. Next is prying off a lot of rotten wood and using wood-hardener on some of it as there are parts of the support structure underneath that are in such bad shape I can't even nail something into it, it's like nailing into spongecake. Learning as I go! I read that Bondo (like you use for auto body repair) is essentially the same thing as the fancy wood fillers that are sold for way more just because they are brown instead of the weird salmon color of Bondo.

Now if it would just stop raining long enough to dry everything out!
primsong: Scan from an old Dr. Who magazine (find tardis win game)
2017-04-14 09:25 am

Hoorah for cheap furniture

Went to reassemble the bed in our guest room after my son and I wrestled it back into the house from the garage, just one of those basic metal frames. No bolts. Son: "It was wired together, Dad had me cut it apart with my wire cutters when we moved it."

I go fish around in the garage and locate four bolts about the right size. Assemble bed. It doesn't fit the boxspring. What the heck? It's a king sized frame? No wonder it was wired together. Go to Habitat for Humanity to drop off king frame and pick up a nicer queen one for only ten bucks. Yay! While there I notice 2 lovely green chairs and a small table to go with them. Chalkboard sign says chairs are 50% off today. Hm.

Go home and assemble bed, turn around and go back to Habitat. Now I have a new dining set! The chairs were only $12 and the table $14. Gosh I love that place! Woo!