Over the fence chat for 2/2/03 - 2/8/03

greenspun.com : LUSENET : Beyond the Sidewalks : One Thread

Hey all! How’s it going? Looks like maybe - just maybe - our posting problems have been corrected - yippee! It’ll be good to get back into the swing of things again!

So, has anyone seen or heard from EM? I’ve thought variously that maybe she went to that peace rally in DC a week or so ago; or maybe they did decide to bug out for Canada? Or should I be prepping a Care package of bon-bons and organic seeds to surreptitiously toss over the fence at the detention compound?! Em; I’m worried about you - do touch base with us, okay?

Ahhh - Springtime and new baby critters! I am soooo envious of you guys! Doesn’t look like there will be any babies out here this year; bottle calves are going to be put off for a while, I think. Might pick up some chicks in MO, tho. Only a few more years ‘til Hubs retires and I can drag home critters for him to take care of! Won’t he be overjoyed! Poor guy had to crawl around and under my farm truck to figure out where to put in some hydraulic oil for the bed lift the other day - why on earth they put the fill for that UNDER the bed, I will never figure out! And then I had him out in the shed trying to find the big auger that we used to plant trees to see if it was repairable (since the guys at the elevator borrowed it and brought it home broken - grrr!) I can find him plenty of work to do in the garden and around the farm; that’s for sure! Can’t remember what I used to do without a husband around; tho I guess Pop and the uncles and cousins have always been around to do that type of stuff!

Things are going well out here on the farm. We finally got our “January Thaw” on Groundhog’s Day - at least one day of it, anyway! Phil saw his shadow and predicted us 6 more weeks of winter (like I didn’t see THAT coming!); but it was nearly 50* here that day, so Hubs and I went out and worked on the wood chip mulch that we’re trying to get put down around the blue spruce tree in the side yard. Hubs thought we had enough cardboard stockpiled to cover a couple of acres, but we didn’t even make it all the way around the tree! Then we picked up all the “dog toys” out of the yard - my old garden shoes that I’d left on the porch, some filters for the well pump, gourds, sticks, plastic flower pots that had been stacked under the canopy of the shed…. Then we took a look at the garden and tried to decide where to put the new fruit trees that I STILL haven’t gotten ordered yet; and tried to figure out where and what size to make the new garden beds. Sure, I know I said I was going to hold off on enlarging the garden, but….. The field that the garden is next to is sort of a trapazoid shape, with the larger end toward the garden; I’d like to square it off, so I keep encroaching farther and farther into the field with the gardens each year - and hoping that Uncle Ivan doesn’t notice! Anyhow, after we got done with that, we took a walk back toward the lake to see if the ice was breaking up back in the coves. Then I hit the kitchen and Hubs went to his shop to work on some race shocks; he didn’t even need to start a fire in the stove as it was warmer outside than inside; especially with the sun shining on the west side of the shed. A pretty good day, all in all.

Pop is doing well; got discharged from the home health physical and occupational therapy that had been ordered. The home health nurse is still around, but I told him he isn’t getting rid of me as easy as he did the PT and OT girls. He thinks he feels bad and grumps and growls around about not being able to do anything; then Jessie comes out and tells him about how some of her stroke patients can’t even walk or feed themselves and he quits with the complaining for a while. Made him feel a little better when I did his exercises with him and got worn out too! He did finally agree to let me apply for a handicapped parking placard - after a long walk inside the hospital to visit Uncle Red. Pop drove last Friday when we went in to town for coffee; then on over to Mattoon (in a blasted snow storm, no less!) to go out to lunch and then visit Uncle Red. Did okay, but it wore him out. He’s limited (by me!) to local driving only unless accompanied by a licensed driver - says that it’s worse than being a kid again, but is going along with it, so far. He’s back to baby-sitting Bailey; but now does it out here, where there is someone around, just in case. Bailey now thinks that they should eat supper out here every night - which is fine with me, but kind of hurt her Mom’s feelings! We’ve compromised by having Lisa fix supper out here on the nights that I work - so far, it’s working out well.

Pop has to go back up to the big hospital to have the stent put in his anuerysm next Monday/Tuesday; so he is still camping out in our room and the TV is still on the main floor until after the procedure; and then a few days until they release him to climb stairs again. I’m not going to miss the TV when it goes back upstairs to live; tho I will admit to enjoying the “24 hours of Clint Eastwood” movies that were on a couple of times. Saw “Maverick” with James Garner, Mel Gibson and Jodie Foster too - yep, we been watching the western channel. Also some bug and critter channel - I now know far more about fruit bats that I ever thought I would! Or ever wanted to for that matter! It’s almost like being back in grade school again, listening to that droning voice over the clackety-clack of the old reel projector - can put me right into nap mode, just like it did back then!

Jes and Chad are doing fine, as is my grand puppy Maraca; tho I still worry about the number of hours that Jessie is taking on at work, given her school load. One of her classes is a study at home/go in and take a test type class; and another is on the internet, so she does have some flexability; but I don’t want her to overload herself and burn out - mentally or physically! I still wonder if some of my thyroid type health problems a year or so ago didn’t have something to do with burning the candle at both ends and overworking my adrenals. Hmmmm.

Well, since there’s not been enough upheaval in my life lately (snort!), I am going to do something that I never thought I would do - I’m going to work day shift; at least for a while. Pop isn’t letting me sleep much during the day; I don’t think that he’s really TRYING to keep me awake; but he gets lonely, or decides to do something and makes a lot of noise, or turns the TV up too loud…so I bit the bullet and asked to go to days - for a while, anyway. I asked for a Saturday/Sunday/Wednesday shift, and thought the boss would weep for joy. Wednesday is the day that half the staff is off to class; and no one wants to work weekends, so he thinks I am a gift from the gods. Wednesday also happens to be a day when Lisa can check in on Pop frequently; and Hubs and Lisa are both available on the weekends. Not to mention that neckties are scarce at work on the weekends!! Boss had no problem with me keeping my scheduled vacations, either; so we will still be able to head for MO, and have the family out for Easter dinner in April. Another plus is that my dinner break will be during daylight hours, so I can go out and scope out the master gardeners perennial garden (read - sneak cutting and plantlets) without a flashlight (tho Carl the security guard just laughs at me when I do that.) Looks like it will work out well for all concerned, although Hubs and I WILL have to get used to sleeping together again.

Do any of you ever get sick of looking for the “Bright Side” of things? Usually it seems to be second nature with me, but every once in a while…..

I haven’t gotten much (anything?) accomplished on my 2003 list of things to do; and now I’m a month behind. Oh well. I’ll either catch up or let it slide, I guess! I do want to at least get my sewing machine set up so that I can make some dresses for work - I am soooo tired of these darn pants! Especially since I had to go buy some bigger ones! I’m trying really, really hard to stay away from Wal-Mart and places like that. Hubs and I need to go somewhere and make a light bulb, paper towel, bath and laundry soap run - I’m about out of the stuff I stocked up on back in November - still got plenty of TP tho! I still can’t find the time to get in for a darn hair cut - I’m starting to look scary! - and I still need to follow up with the doc, from back in November. Sheesh! Someday….

Well, I need to load up the car and head in to town to do some laundry - I will be sooo glad when it gets to be decent weather and I can hang the clothes out on the line again! You folks take care, hope to see some of you writing in.

-- Anonymous, February 05, 2003


NO time to answer, Polly, but so good to hear from you! I'll be back soon. Hi everyone from the Great Northwest!

-- Anonymous, February 07, 2003

MORE snow. Another 6 inches and more is expected on Monday. I know, I know, it's winter but the old stuff was just starting to disappear.

I found something really interesting. Remember I told everyone about my night terrors? Well, I brought home a lizard lightbulb from work. It has UV values that are equal to sunlight. It's what keeps lizards healthy. Anyway, I sat under the bulb for about 20 minutes the other night and slept REALLY great. I didn't do it for last night but I still slept great. I think there may be something to it. I also don't drink milk so maybe it's the Vit D.

The babies are doing well. I stopped putting on their little sleeve sweaters and opened the pen so they could visit with their aunties. During the feeding I have to make sure I move the kids before they get stampeded on. Stupid goats. I want to open up my side wall so there will be more room for when the other babies come but haven't gotten my husband to agree that it isn't a support wall and can come down. See, I put two free standing sheds together. One was closed in. He thinks that the siding is what is holding the thing together. I should just do it when he's not home one day.

That's another thing. I changed my working days from Tues, Wens & Thurs to Mon, Wens & Fri because the college kids had to have different days. I can't believe how mess up I've gotten. I used to clean on Fridays and now can't get to it on Thursday. And Tuesdays are the aution days so at least I can bring animals there now. And I didn't realize it but I had four free days in a row and don't now so if I start a project (like painting the basement stairwell) I have a few days inbetween and get sidetracked. Gee, if I'm having a problem with moving a couple of days, I hope you are okay with days, Polly.

I bought myself those errings I wanted yesterday. Today, my husband said that he wished he knew because he would have gotten them for me for Valentine's Day. I said I hinted and showed him before my Birthday and he didn't realize. I said it was okay for him to wrap it up if he wants to. I also said I would like another set and showed him a picture of them (I had told him to stop buying me jewerly a long time ago but now I just want some everyday stuff)and he asked where he could get it from. Sigh...May as well go buy that myself too...

Westminster Kennel Club show is tomorrow in NY. I wanted to go because a friend of mine is showing in Bichon Frise class but I now work on Mondays. I didn't go to work Fri because of the snow so I don't think he would like me to take off again. Cough, cough... I also would like to go because you get to see so many different dogs and maybe I could make up my mind on a breed. And even find a breeder of a good quality dog. All well... Hubby gets nervous whenever I go to NYC anyway.

Hope everyone is fine.

-- Anonymous, February 09, 2003

We really should have started another thread today . . . but this one is so under utilized, perhaps we'll make it a 2-week thread.

Dee, I can just FEEL you getting sick -- I prescribe a heavy dose of dog watching to make you recover! :-D

Eek, my computer is doing funky things. Will try to post this, more later.

-- Anonymous, February 09, 2003

Wow, I did it! I did it! I got back in!!! For some reason, I haven't been able to (well, on and off) for the longest time so that after a while you quit trying it every day, y'know?

It's cold here. Maybe that should be Cold. No idea what it truly is out tonite, when I drove past the bank it said that it was -14, so I guess I'll take that as the standard.

Does anybody else see Polly's post above as having a capitol A w/a little roof over it's head (whatever that is called) by every upper case punctuation mark? It's only on the reply version tho. Very strange.

Now I've got to read and see what I've been missing out on.

It's been so cold and clear out that I've been hoping to at least see the northern lights lately, but no such luck. It's been cold out enough that I start to feel my face getting to the point where it could frostbite when I'm out tossing hay to the outside horses, and since I don't have any aurora borealis to look at, I go inside. It would be a good time to look at stars if it wasn't so blinking cold!

It could be worse tho...like the winter of '96. So I'm not going to complain a whole lot.

So tell me folks, what with the world situation at the moment, I see on the squawk box that there is some list of preparedness supplies for folks to be laying in in case of another terrorist attack. Unfortunately, I have a very active imagination as to worst case scenarios, so does anyone know where the list can be found for perusal? I want to check it off against what I've got in my basement already.

Otherwise, about all I do is shovel out, take care of the dog and other assorted critters, and dream about spring. I had an empty planter box and space in the green house, so I planted radish seeds just for something green growing. They're getting a little leggy, but they have two true leaves now. It should be an interesting experiment anyway. The critters will eat them if I get nothing but leaves so it shouldn't be any loss. (it was a packet of free seeds)

I SHOULD start thinking about garden catalogue orders, but it's hard to get inspired at the moment. The winter was so mild up til now, and now it's so cold that I'm not thinking a whole lot about it practically -- which is what happens every year, and the companies sell out of things I want. Fooey.

-- Anonymous, February 13, 2003

Happy Valentine's Day everyone! I've been like Julie, I haven't been able to get into the site for a while so I forgot to check it. I hope this post doesn't get ouched.

Keith and I are being boring for Valentine's Day. We got each other a card and that's all. I told him when we first started dating that if he ever got me flowers for Valentine's Day I would be mad because they're too expensive. We may go to a matinee this weekend, either "Shanghai Knights" or "Daredevil".

Our big news is that we've decided to make the move out to the country this year! We had been delaying because we wanted to save enough to have a 20% downpayment and avoid paying PMI. Then we discovered that if we get a VA mortgage we can put down less than 20% (even all the way down to 0%) and since the loan is guaranteed by the government the lender isn't allowed to charge PMI. The only downside (and I say that jokingly) is that we may have to get married so that we can count both our incomes toward the loan application rather than just Keith's (he's the veteran). Our plan has been to move to the country and then have a simple little backyard wedding once we got settled so we're hoping that being engaged will be enough for the mortgage lender and they won't make us get hitched before moving. We don't have any timeline for making a purchase. I'm pretty picky about what I want and properties with 10+ acres don't come on the market that often so we may be looking for a while.

Work is the same old same old. There was a chance that I would have to go to Germany at the end of this month but thankfully my boss decided my participation wasn't necessary. Now with all the stuff going on in the world it looks like the trip may be cancelled entirely.

Polly I'm glad that Pops is doing so well and that he has all of his family and friends around to keep him in line. We've been eating some of the salsa I made from the mix you sent to me and it's very yummy. :)

I've been getting seed catalogs in the mail but I haven't looked at them yet. I've had such horrible luck with squash vine borers the past two years so I'm considering pulling up part of my herb bed that's on the other side of the house and planting the squash there. Hopefully the bloody pests won't be able to find them there. Lots of spinach, a few green beans, some paste tomatoes, and some beets should just about cover it. Maybe stick in a couple of pepper plants for salsa and spaghetti sauce.

Stay warm everyone! :)

-- Anonymous, February 14, 2003

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