Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving !

Today is Thanksgiving and it is my 2nd favorite holiday after Christmas. It is the first time though that I have spent it by myself. It was totally my choice to come up to Mokehill even though Nick has to be at his dad's house and my parent's were at home. Saturday, my parents are coming, my aunt and uncle who live in Oregon and maybe my sis and niece and my cousins... lots of maybes but I am happy with whomever comes.

I am at the house right now and using an ATT connection thingie my work gave me in case of an emergency. It sorta works.. but it is slow and takes a long time to load things. This webpage took 5 mins..

Today I got a call from my neighbor in Moraga that a transformer blew out and some of the appliances were smoking... and the fire dept was there and yes... my house was affected. They couldn't get in to check but looked through the windows and didn't see anything on fire. PGE is supposed to pay for the damaged items so when I get home I will have to check. Everything was off but I have that big flat screen tv and nick's gaming computer that are really expensive... hope they made it okay.

I have been  priming the kitchen walls and got that done finally. I was painting the kitchen ceiling but ran out of paint so I will need to get some tomorrow and finish it. Hope Lowe's isn't a zoo... don't see how it could be but you never know.

Walked down by the creek and saw a covey of quail with at least 30 birds! Amazing! We have them in Moraga but not that many in one group. They are living in that mass of branches from all those down trees. So maybe I will leave those for now.

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! And I hope this gets posted... 

julie

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Nov 14th and 15th

The dog and I went up to the hill house this weekend and brrrr... it was chilly up there! But I was so excited because it meant that I could finally fire up the wood stove. When I got there I got the ATV out and moved some more wood from the front.. just 1 load. Then I rode down the hill over to the meadow area. Casey actually followed me really well and only ran in front of the ATV 1 time and stopped. She seemed to really like running with me like that! Until she had to come up the hill back to the house. That was a bit slow but she is an old lady so I can't blame her.

I finished 2 window screens and that took a long time. You can't buy premade screens anymore, they just don't make them. So you have to buy these kits and build them yourself. The screen frame is held together by these plastic pieces you shove into the corners. The problem is that they break really easily! I thought I could put it together, see if it fit in the window, pull it apart and fix the length and put them back together. Nope. Once they are in, they are stuck and pulling them out will break them. I broke 3 corners at one time because I pulled 1 corner too hard and the frame twisted and the others snapped. I was so mad! I had to use the corners from the 3rd kit just to finish the 2 screens. Now I have to see if I can find some corners somewhere so that I can build the last screen I need in the living room. It took me about 2 hours to put the screens together and another hour to get the screening material in. It would have gone faster if I hadn't used the old screen as a guide. You see they made the screen that was in the window too big and they were keeping it up (and together) with tape and I didn't realize the size was wrong. I put a new one together and just figured it would work and of course it didn't. I should have known. Nothing in that house was done right and that is why everything has to be redone.

I lit up the woodstove that night and boy does it warm up the place! But I forgot that I wasn't suppose to close the door because the paint is curing and the material used around the door will stick to the stove. It is fiberglass insulation braided together in a rope and glued around the door frame. I had to go out so I closed the door tight and when I came back, half of the baffle fell down. I have just ordered some more glue so I can stick it back on. Here is a picture..

1st fire in wood stove!

Other news.. my mom's friend's plants are all still alive. I watered them well and hopefully they will get some rain here soon to keep them going.
No signs of the rats so I am hoping that with the trees gone and my bugging them they have left the attic. Dad is bringing his long ladder up, over Thanksgiving, so that I can plug up the holes that are way up high.
Mom and Dad are coming up for Thanksgiving. I got a 18lb turkey because last time I cooked for just the 3 of us they complained that my turkey was too small! I plan to be up there all weekend so if anyone wants to come visit, give me a call! I can't guarantee that I won't put you to work though... :)

julie

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Quiet Sunday... in Moraga

I needed to stay home this weekend and just try and recover some.. running between the 2 houses and working has made me tired. But today I feel much better and will go out and work in my (little) yard here that I have been neglecting so much. I have some tulip bulbs that are sold in sets that I bought to plant in pots. They have been "chilling" in Nick's drink frig and he had a hard time explaining to his friends why they were there! Oh well! We picked up a sofa bed, chair and drop leaf table this weekend for free. I belong to this yahoo group called freecycle and this lady was getting rid of all this stuff. I got the sofa and chair for nick's basement room and the table for the dining room. I am going over the Thanksgiving weekend and my parent's might come up so I needed a bigger table. And did I mention it was free?
This group is a great resource for giving and getting stuff. I got someone to pick up the bricks in my yard for free off of it. Annoyed my dad because he said I should have sold them but I knew that I didn't have the back strength to dig them out and stack them and the sell them.. so someone else did it for me.
They have all sorts of things on there and you would be surprised at what people are trying to give away.
To find a group go to Yahoo Groups and type in Freecycle to find the one in your area.

julie

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Happy Halloween!

I ditched the Moraga house for a quick trip up to Mokehill this past Halloween weekend. Not a lot to share but I did get the wildflowers seeds out there, and the plants my mom's friend gave me got planted. So some stuff got done on my list!
My dog, Casey, found me a Halloween trick in the garage...

Baby Scorpion in my Garage
He/She was very small about 1 1/2 inches so I wasn't feeling threatnened at all.. in fact it was so small it disappeared into a crack in the floor! Casey hears these things or smells them and goes over and sniffs around until I notice what she is doing and come investigate. It was a bag on the floor that she never paid attention to before.. and there she is pushing it with her nose trying to move it. So I waltz over and pick it up and this big beetle comes out! I mean big... 2 inches or more! (that thing scared me!) I think that is what all the fuss is about and I go to move the bag, and there is a movement again.. and there is this little scorpion. Kinda of a creepy moment to have on Halloween...and my dog is going nuts because she wants to eat it and I am trying to get a picture of it...i got a bad one as you can see. (My life sometimes feels like it should be on candid camera... or for the young crowd out there... punk'd. I sometimes catch myself doing stupid/clumsy/crazy things and think, I am glad no one is here to see this!)

There are 3 things up in the hills that give people trouble:
1. Rattlesnakes  - poisonous
2. Scorpions - Ouch!
3. Tarantulas - Scary but not poisonous

I have had 2 of 3 so far... waiting for my next creepy crawlie!

Oh! I got my home warranty information finally!! Scorpions are not covered... I checked..

julie