September 13, 2015
Finally - Glorious Rain
My little section of the world has been very far behind on rainfall. In a 3 week timespan, we got maybe 1/2" of rain. Funny as it sounds, I regularly drove/rode thru rain, and one night there were flash flood warnings for every town surrounding mine - but not mine (because the storms were going to either side). Other towns were dealing with cleaning up overrun culverts and drainage ditches alongside the roads, and I was watering my vegies and new plantings 4-5 times per week. I even had to water new plantings in the no-mow zone; which is a place that has always been damp. I water by hand as I find it very wasteful to water areas outside my gardens. And, I am not encouraging the grass/weeds to grow by giving them moisture. Fortunately watering is soothing, calming and lets me take the time to inspect for weeds infiltrating the mulch.
Well, Thursday into Friday we got a long drawn out rain. Probably only got 1-1.5 inches, but it was nice and slow so soaked in. Today it has been drizzly most of the day, and rain is expected tonight (assuming it doesn't go around us).
An extra 30-40 minutes per day gained in not watering is great!
September 06, 2015
I've had a couple of small projects that I wanted to get done, but had more pressing things to do. I finally found time to do them last weekend while I was feeling lazy.
The first project was to move one of the fence gates. Whe the EX put up the fence, one gate was placed at the corner of the house that is directly next to the lowest end of the ramp. At the time that made sense as it was protected by the eave of the house, so the gate entrance wouldn't get muddy. However, since having the standing seam roof put on last fall, I found the placement just didn't work anymore. The problem is from the roof dumping the snow, which is normally a good thing. The dumped snow compacts to a very hard mound and I was having trouble trying to keep a path from the yard to the gate open. The snow blower was not effective, so I had to chop and shovel.
Well, the obvious solution was to place the gate at the section directly across from the ramp. This improves the situation two ways; the gate is outside the area where the snow dumps, and it makes it more convenient to snow blow from the propane tank into the pen and up to the ramp. Of course the project took way longer than it should have because I went thru every socket I had to try to loosen the nuts on the bolts, then finally had to go buy a deep socket to reach - but at least the job got done. The first picture is the section placed where the gate used to be and the 2nd picture is of the gate's new location.
Another project that came to fruition was staining the landscape timbers to the front gardens. I had to wait for the pressure treatment to dry out enough for staining, and it was finally time. I think the stain helps distinguish the garden are from the house nicely. Also seems to help the plants look more "green" for some reason (all to the good of course).
And then the town almost completed a project; on the 28th I rode home from work and was delighted that they had laid some asphalt! I think they still have one more layer to go, but this is a vast improvement over the previous pavement and the dirt after it was torn up. When I rode in on the 27th, it was mud as apparently they had either oiled or watered the dirt (it hadn't rained) and that was a bit scary feeling the bike slither around. Anyway, I am quite happy with what is there now - and there is no big sinkhole directly in front of my driveway!
February 21, 2015
Record Year for Birds
This winter, both the NH Audubon Society Winter Bird Survey, and the Cornell / Audubon Back Yard Bird Count were on the same weekend. This pleased me as I had a record number of species to report (for me) and I could use that for both counts. There were also sparrows that I wasn't confident of the identification, and some I couldn't even guess or find in a book to my satisfaction. Without further ado, here is my list for this year:
- Blue Jay - 2
- Crow - 2
- Goldfinch - 16
- Chickadee - 2
- Cardinal - 3 (1M & 2F
- Purple Finch - 12 (Cornell tells me that is an unusually high number, but I am positive they were purple, not house finches)
- WB Nuthatch - 1 (too bad I didn't see both of them that are usually around)
- Pine Siskin - 4
- Junco - 2 (a really low number as far as I am concerned)
- Starling - 1 (first one I have seen in NH and was thumbing thru my bird book when I looked up saw the bird on the railing, looked down and I was on that page in the book - funny how that worked out)
- Tufted Titmouse - 2 (usually have 3)
- Downey Woodpecker -1 male
- Mourning Dove - 4
- Pileated Woodpecker - 1 (seen pounding on a dead tree in the empty lot/swamp next door. Was super excited to see it!)
- Sparrows of indeterminate species - around 20
I reported today on the Cornell BYBC site, and will mail in my list to the NH Audubon on Monday
February 16, 2015
Snow, Yeah We Got That
Cop Car asked if we were getting any of the blizzards that have hit the area. Technically we haven't, although we have had plenty of snow and wind. We've had major storms in each of the last 4 weeks, along with minor storms in between.
A few pictures from Sunday when there was 14-15" of snow on the railing of the ramp:
I was actually somewhat happy about the high wind on Sunday as it helped throw the snow over the banks. We have been lucky, parts of MA and the seacoast of NH have gotten hammered worse than this area so far this season.
January 31, 2015
No, not my luck - the Town of Henniker just lost almost its entire fleet of snow removal equipment due to a fire at the town barn. Henniker is next to my town, and I know several people who live there (the town, not the barn - LOL). There is a snowstorm expected Monday that should dump 12-18" of white stuff on us.
I hoped this morning my town, and other surrounding towns would pick up portions of Henniker streets. Then late this afternoon, I was on my way to Manchester, and passed 3-4 state plow trucks heading the other way. I wonder at the time if they were headed to Henniker as loaners.
On tonight's evening news, I found that both my hope and my guess were true; several towns, including mine, will help cover some of the routes, and the state is supplying some equipment too.
Although they like to say that this is good old Yankee generosity, it is my belief that the same would hold true in Kansas (neighbor helping neighbor), or any other state.
EDIT: Here is the NHDOT FB page describing the help that Henniker will get.
January 11, 2015
Low Temp of the Season
The lowest temperature yet this season was at 4 AM on January 8th:
Right now it is -10F.
Still nice and warm inside from the pellet stoves!
November 27, 2014
I started today with snowblowing the driveway. I had snow blowed last night, but that was just the first 5-6", so I had to get the rest of the 13" total taken care of along with the berm the town plows left at the end of the driveway.
After getting the driveway cleared, I took time to look at the trees and how magical they look
These trees are just across the fence
This tree is across the street from me, and usually doesn't look like much, but with the snowy covering lit up by sunlight makes it just explode with beautifull
I went to my boss's house for an early Thanksgiving dinner and she had created a lovely spread
On the way home, I was enchanted with the trees to either side of the road
Stop and smell the roses during the spring and summer, Enjoy the colors of fall, and take the time to be enchanted with the beauty that fresh snow brings to the otherwise barren landscape during winter!
For Thanksgiving NH recieved a snowfall that turned the landscape beautiful. The first measurable snowfall for fall of 2014 measured 13" here in Hillboro. I am so very thankful that we didn't get the massive snowfall that Buffalo recieved last week!
Along with being blessed with the beautiful scenery, I am thnakful for family (both by blood and in-laws), internet friends and furry friends, that I have a job, that I have a place to live and can afford to keep myself warm and fed, and that I am healthy and able to take care of myself. Addtionally, I am thankful for those men and women who defend our country.
I hope everyone finds time today to realize what they have.
October 04, 2014
NH Home of the Mini Earthquake
One of the few times I didn't feel/hear/realize that there was a quake when I was awake. Heck, minor quakes have waken me up before. In my defence, that was when I was at the other house sleeping in the basement. Also, I live in town now, so more heavy traffic. Don't think twice when I hear what sounds like big trucks coming down RT 149, unlike the quiet road I previously lived on.
July 07, 2014
Summer in the 603
The Super Secret Project is a NH band that doesn't do mainstream airwaves, but has done several songs about NH (or the 603 - our area code). The have teamed up with Roots of Creation and made a new song, Summer in the 603.
Money quote in my book: The Devil Went Down to Georgia because Daniel Webster kicked his ass!