October 26, 2014
Birding at Home
The wild birds have gone into the pre-winter feeding frenzy. Where during the summer, I rarely had to refil the seed dispensors, now the hanging feeder is filled every 3-4 days.
In addition, the leftover Birdie seed that I place in a platform feeder, used to feed squirrels and the occasional bird. Now, the squirrel don't have a chance because of frequent visits of the avian kind.
I won't cry for the squirrels just yet. I am not aiming to feed them. However, it seems that we have had a total acorn failure this year - I have seen 1 acorn in my travels, so it may be a hard winter for them and other wildlife.
Air Infiltration is Everywhere
Air leaks in this house are everywhere. Some are so obvious, one wonders how she missed them before now.
The ceilings are not sheetrock, they are either acustical tile or material you normally associate with dropped ceilings.Normal housing construction has sheetrock for walls and ceilings so tape and mudd cover any gaps. Thus, airflow is kept to a minimum (there are other steps that good builders use, but lets just go with that simplified version).
With tiles, no such jointing can be done. Any gaps are covered with crown molding. This is something I completely missed, even after having new sheetrock installed. Here is a small joint (very rare in this house)
How could I have missed such obvious issues while I was putting up the crown molding in the bedroom? Once I recognized it, the crown molding came back down and I started filling gaps. With very small gaps, I could use rope caulk. With larger gaps, more creativity was involved. I had some weather seal from previous projects (some from the old house); some of felt and some of foam, so I started with what I had for the gaps less than 3/4 inches
I had nothing large enough for the 3/4 and larger gaps, so scraps of foam board are temporarily being used.
I have gotten larger foam weatherstripping to replace the rigid foam. Eventually, I will be putting in sheetrock ceilings and then the gaps will be covered more conventionally. But for now, this will have to do.
Last weekend there was a small mishap hear at the Bogie house. Iw was getting all the stuff together that I needed to make shower gel (I haven't bought any soap but dish soap and laundry detergent for a couple of years). I was being lazy and decided that I could carry the container of essential oils, a gallon jug of gell base, can of grapeseed oil and bottle of glycerin. I had quite the arm full and juggled everything around a couple of times until I figured I could make it the 20 steps to the kitchen.
Following picture is of my EO (essential oil) container next to the kitchen sink so you can get an idea of the size.
Wo, the EO container was balanced in one arm, the gallon jug clentched by the handle of the opposite hand, and the other containers wedged between my arm and body on the side that had the gallon jug. Naturally, I bumped into the door frame of the craft room as I was exiting. The can of grapeseed oil, being a tad slick on the outside, got just enough of a jolt to make it squirm out of my grasp and hit the floor in the hallway just in front of the bedroom door. At that point, its flip top flipped, and oil started to ooze out - Yay - NOT.
I proceded to the kitchen with the rest of the stuff, put it down, then headed back with a big wad of paper towels to clean up the mess. This is where I had a bit of luck; I had completed putting the bedroom in order and had mopped the wood floor a couple of times to get up as much of the sheetrock dust and other stuff off the wood floor. Once I started wiping at the oil, I realized it was helping to get all the stuff trapped in the wood grain out, and giving the wood floor a more finished look (most of the protectant of al the wood floors is pretty much worn off). So, I ended up spreading the spilled oil all thru the bedroom.
So, my clumsiness paid off. I will remember this as I finish working on each room and finish it off by coating the floor with grapeseed oil.
October 20, 2014
RIP Prince 10/20/14
Prince took his last breath today and I would like to remind everyone what all he had been thru while retaining his dignity, stoicism, and loving calmeness.
I got Prince as a "used" dog, He had at least 2 homes prior to my bringing him home in June of 2001. I hadn't planned to get another dog so soon, but Sampson shut down after losing his companions Bogie and Niki within 5 weeks, and my vet recommended Prince from a family that just couldn't keep him from getting out of the (loosly) fenced back yard and running in the streets. He had a plate in his right, front leg from being hit by a car in Peterborough.
Sampson immediately perked up when I brought Prince home, even though there was a huge age difference (in dog years). Sampson was a senior, and Prince was between 1 and 2 years old. The cats, New, Tory and Indy, weren't sure what to make of Prince as they were used to being around older dogs and Prince delighted in chasing them if they were so foolish to run. Timid Indy was the first to figure out if she didn't run, that Prince would stop his charge and just sniff around. His other bad habit was chewing shoes, so those were kept out of reach until he grew out of that phase (about 6 months if I remember correctly, somewhat confirming our suspicion that he was around 1.5 years old when I brought him home). From day one, he had the fastest and prettiest sit any of my dogs have ever had and although he didn't play much with toys, he did have a favorite squeaky
Missy became Prince's fast friend when she came into the household 9/18/01 and being of around the same age helped channel his energy. When he was outside, he was on a cable until he got attacked a couple of times by the neighbor's dogs (who managed to get loose a couple of times). That is when we had the fence built at the Deering house, so he could roam the yard without danger. That is the only thing that seemed to change Prince; he was always very friendly with other dogs, but after a couple of bad encounters, he would not tolerate any other dogs coming close. I couldn't blame him, and honestly, the only major accomodation was when we went to the vet we made sure no dogs were in the waiting room when we went in and out.
Prince was a couch potato even though he wasn't allowed on the furniture. Anytime everyone went down the stairs, he was sneeking up on the couch. It finally got to the point that we gave up castigating him, as long as he got off when we entered the living room, so we tried to remember to place a comforter on it to keep the couch fabric somewhat clean. However, the couch was the only piece of furniture he got on - the bed and easy chair were of no interest to him
In the last 5 years or so, he lost a lot of his sight to cataracts (although motion was a magnet for him) and his hearing was very poor, but he still moved well. He also started developing fatty non-malignant tumors around his torso, spine, and rear legs.
Then the big changes came in 2013; Shadow passed, Missy had to be put down, the Ex left the house, then the menagerie and I moved to the Hillsboro house. Thru it all, Prince was stoic and accepting of all the changes. Okay, except when I tried to keep him in the kitchen when I was at work. I was gone 13-14 hours a day, so I wanted him to mess up the tiles, not the wood floor. Well, after about a week, he got tired of that and put in the most effort I have ever seen him put into anything to get out.
And then he went to a kennel a couple of times while I was out of town, or while the contractors were working on the house. They obviously spoiled him and he obviously loved it. I was so glad that he was in good spirits when he came out of the kennels as I felt so guilty!
He had also been on medicine since this spring for incontinence, which worked well most of the time. These last couple of months had been harder on him. Even though my work days were shorter (actually, drive time less), he could no longer hold his bladder. I got wee-wee pads, which he used most times. But the last two weeks he had also been voiding his bowels during the day, when previously he had been very regular - first thing in the morning and again after I got home from work. And his back legs have been very shaky - several times I have had to help him get up from laying down.
Tonight, when I got home from work, he had obviously been in the office all day long; voiding there (wehre is previously had been in the living room on the pee pads) and he had only been able to paddle along the floor to get away from laying in the mess.
I carried him to the door and helped him down the ramp so he could do his business in the yard. I debated with myself, but looking at his shaking back legs, decided he was in such pain and instability (I assume from the fatty tumors growing along his spine), that I had to make the decision and let him go with his dignity intact and not prolong things because of my needs.
I took him to CAVES, the emergency vet clinic in Concord and gave him the last gift I could, painless sleep. If there is an afterlife,
he is now cavorting with old friends; Missy, Sampson, Indy and Shadow- and gaining new friends; New, Bogie, Niki (who will mother him to death), Cleo (whose life was so short since she had feline HIV), Argent (Bogie's sisterm who was with us way to short a time), New (who was the most well traveled of the group), Shilo, Midnight, Black Angel, Midnight, Blackie, Butterscotch, and Fluffy.
Rest in peace friend. You are out of pain, can see clearly and hear all the amazing sounds of nature. You were a great friend and I'm glad I could provide your forever home after 2 other homes found they couldn't keep you. You were a rock, so stoic and calm no matter what happened. How I will miss you!
October 18, 2014
What is new here?
Yep, that is this morning after I slept in my own bed, in my own bedroom, for the first time since spring. The base trim has been sanded, stained and polyuerathaned
The crown molding has been painted, although not all is up. The sheetrock that was installed was 1/2". The sheetrock that I tore out was apparently 5/16" (or less), so I have to cut some of the pieces to length yet.
And, I haven't done any of the window trim. But I did get curtains up so enough is done that I moved in. Yay!
So, about 11 dyas ago (Wednesday 10/8/14) the driveway was paved. One is not supposed to drive or park on it for at least 5 days.
No problem, I have been parking my Jeep on the lawn and wasn't taking the bike anywhere once it was ensconced in the garage.
Saturday (10/11), I figured I better pre-buy 3 tons of wood pellets. They asked if I wanted to take some home. Sure. The Jeep can hold a few.
I got home and realized my issue - new driveway that leads to garage. Garage leads to basement. Basement is where I store pellets. Other way to basement is up the front steps, down the stairs and around the stairway to the back of the basement. Car was loaded with 1/2 ton (who needs a truck when they have the cheapest, wimpiest Jeep they make?)
Decided I could drive into the garage, unload, then park back in the yard. Since I didn't have to turn the wheels while in the driveway, not much danger of doing damage. But still . . .
Didn't see any damage. And since I didn't have to turn my wheels while on the driveway, there wasn't likely to be any. However, illustrates PPP perfectly.
October 14, 2014
Motorcycle Lowers Explained
In the comments to Putting CC Out of Her Misery, Cop Car didn't understand my term of "lowers", which the new bike has, but the old bike didn't.
See the little light to the left of the wheel and in front of the engine guard? Behind that light is a lower. Here is a side view:
Lowers, are the leg protectors that are attached to the engine guard. This particular set has vents in it so I can have more air flow on warm days, and almost no air flow on cold days. They are also removeable if I so wish. They do have small "glove box" type compartments. I'm not sure I would trust anything too valuble in there as the covers are held on just by snaps - and they hold only so well as you snap them on :)
October 11, 2014
So now that the cat is out of the bag (or the bike), now I can post about other doings about the exterior of the house. When I was looking at buying a new bike, I new that there would be serious issues with the driveway. The 2006 Street Glide is an inch shorter (in seat height) than the 2011. I had lowered the 2006 bike by 1 inch - meaning the 2013 would be 2" taller.
The 2006 was a major PITA to back up my driveway. The driveway is uphill (slightly), which would not be too difficult since it is paved, if it weren't for all the sinkholes, heaves and ruts. My old bike would take me a couple of minutes to navigate the 50 feet to my garage. I knew I would be in serious trouble if I bought the 2011. So, before buying, I contacted contractors about repaving or reconstructing the drive.
It wasn't nearly as expensive as I figured, so I contracted a company to dig up the old driveway, lay new gravel underneath and pave. They were to start the project during the week of 10/6, so when I bought the 2011, I knew I would have to suck it up and digure out how to back it into the garage.
OMG - 900 pounds is so heavy, much heavier when you add an inch and are on tippy toes the entire time! It literally took me 10-12 minutes to back it in the first time (and I had to take a break 1/2 way thru). After a couple of times, I had that down to 6-7 minutes using everything I had (and then some) to get it in to shelter.
So, last weekend, I emailed the guy and asked him if the plan was still for sometime during the week. We had rainy weather, so I wasn't sure if their schedule was delayd. He emailed back that they planned on starting Wednesday. I emailed him and told him that was fine, if they were going to start earlier, then let me know the day before so I made sure I took the correct vehicle to work - I needed to make sure a certain vehicle was in the garage. He replied that he would let me know if anything changed.
So, Tuesday I rode to work and had a great ride home. Until I pulled up to the driveway
Yeah, I wasn't thrilled. In fact I was downright irate. He had not called, emailed or in any way attempted to let me know they were starting the project early. Not only was there a 3" drop from the pavement to the dirtbed (and a 3" rise to the garage floor). But even if I had been brave enough to try to back up, I couldn't get to the damn garage!
I called him and blistered his ears. Oh, but he was trying to get ahead of the weather (rain due the next day). That is awesome except I gave you explicit instructions to let me know if you wanted to start earlier as I needed to make sure my vehicle was in the garage. Oh, but he saw my Jeep beside the house (it has been outside since I bought the new bike) and thought he was good - SAY WHAT? Oh, he thought I would be soooo happy that he started early. Yeah, IF HE HAD LET ME KNOW AHEAD OF TIME AS HE STATED HE WOULD- dum-ass.
Anyway, he finally drove 40 minutes to come move the 4 pieces of machinery and help me back the bike up the driveway. There is no more helpless feeling, on a brand new bike, to have both feet paddling the air and trusting an idiot to keep you upright as you are bouncing off the road into the dirt of the driveway, and once again going up a ramp into the garage.
Fortunately, nothing bad happened. And, the next day the driveway was paved completely (and now I have to wait for it to cure before driving on it).
Maybe he'll surprise me by discounting the bill. I didn't ask after he took my tongue lashing without any indication that it irritated him. Only time will tell.
Putting CC out of Her Misery
Buffy, was so kind as not to spill the beans. I am sure she saw my posting on FB, so she declined to participate. Alright, here is the last hint - before:
Yep, just a little difference. In fact, a lot of difference. The black bike is a 2006 HD Street Glide. The Merlot Sunglow (burgundy/reddish) bike is a 2011 Street Glide. And here is the story as told on the Queens of the Road Forum:
So I was at my favorite Harley dealer a couple of weekends ago, looking at bikes like I always do. I wasn't looking for a bike, I just like to sit on the SG's [Street Glides - bogie] that take my fancy when I am at a Harley dealer. That day, I saw a bad ass 2011 Merlot Sunglow SG with lowers, but a naked back end. I walked past it a couple of times, circled it a couple of times, then sat on it.
Now I've sat on probably 100's of bikes since I got my '06 SG and never got the urge to do anything with it. BUT, this one felt right (only had one other bike "feel right", that would be my '06 SG). And, just like when I sat on the '06, the 2011 "spoke" to me.
My ever practical self got off the bike and left to continue with my errands. See, I have spent so much on my fixing up my house this year, and being single now with no back up income if I should lose my job, a new bike just wasn't in the cards.
A couple of days later I was looking to see what I could reasonably expect to get for trading in my '06. Then I thought of the things I would have to add to the 2011 - musts; heated grips, fog lights, LED headlight and 2 year extended warrantee. And I thought about what dollar amount I would be willing to finance (not payments, total dollar amount). Then, just for giggles, I emailed the sales guy to see what I could get for trade. Not nearly enough.
He asked me to come in and talk, but I told him I didn't want to waste his, or my, time and we were just too far apart. He said to come in anyway and bring the '06 so they could look at it and see if they could give me more. Last Saturday [9/20/14 - bogie], I went in and they offered me another grand for my bike. With the add-ons I wanted, and the price of the bike, the number was within a couple of hundred of the figure I was willing to finance. Then I asked if the price came with the 2 year warrantee, as I had earlier told him I wanted. Um, No.
So, I ended up in a room with the salesman, the boss, and the finance guy. At one point I got up, put out my hand to the sales guy and said, "well, it was worth a try." He got up, shook my hand and we took 1 step towards the door when the boss said "wait". He gave me a lower total (basically one year of the warrantee for free) and I just stared at him for about 2 minutes until he finally just stated that he couldn't do any better.
I thought about it some more, decided I could pay the difference and still have the loan amount of what I wanted. They spent the week putting on my parts and today [9/27/14 - bogie] I said goodby to my 2006, and hello to my 2011. I no longer have to lust after the 6 gallon tank, or the 6 speed transmission. And, it had the power pack upgrade, giving it the 103 motor with security system.
So here I am, with winter just around the corner, with a new-to-me bike. Most of my riding has been to work, or to the Harley shop for tweaks (they wired the fog lights in a way that I didn't like so they fixed them to the way I wanted), but it has been fun. The 2006 had right around 24k miles when I bought it 12/18/2010 (never rode it until the next April), and had 51k when I traded in. The 2011 had just over 24k when I bought it, so I know that I have many a year ahead to enjoy it.
October 05, 2014
Bed Room Paint
Finally got all the wallpaper off of one wall in the bedroom then mudded the nicks, dings and natural divots of the wall board. That, of course, meant retapping and mudding the corner that meets the new sheetrock (which I had already put on one coat of paint.
I then used leftovers from the livingroom paint to prime it and see if it would look okay with paint since it is wallboard and not sheetrock. Then started painting it with my color of choic, and gave the other two walls a second coat of paint. Ended up getting a second gallon made up at the Depot in a different town. Bet you can't tell where the first gallon meets the second gallon.
I'm quite pleased that the two cans of paint matched up so well. I haven't done the other wall as that is where all the furniture is shoved up to. Plus, the wallpaper is mostly intact so will leave that one for later. Now just need to paint the crown molding and base trim to those can be installed. Will trim out the windows later too. I may actually get to move into the bedroom in another week or so.