Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Rumors of my Demise

have been greatly exaggerated. I am alive and tired. Working daylight to dark all weekend makes one a tired, sore, grumpy person. And as I write this now, I have spent the morning in the office until 11:00am, then drove to Prince George, VA to pick up material, then drove to this lovely spot of Aiken, SC. About 10 hours on the road plus 3 1/2 hours in the office AND answering emails and looking up drawings now equals one unhappy and even tireder (yes, that's a word) person. I know, quit complaining. And like The Wife said, we have no basements but we do have an unfinished room over the garage, which I will not be visiting for a while. Then again, it would get me out of moving boxes :)

We did get a lot accomplished this weekend. I got six beds built and planted with a variety of tomatoes (German Johnson, Eva Purple Ball, Green Zebra, Brandywine, Better Boy, Mortgage Lifter, Jelly Bean, Romas, and the $1.00 tomato, California Wonder and Carnival peppers, Black Beauty eggplants, Eureka Hybrid, Bush, and Muncher  cukes, and that's about it. I spent some money that I really didn't want to spend but I built the beds out of cedar so they'll last a lot longer. As we live in the Sandhills of NC, the current soil is not conducive to growing anything out of the ground. Anyway here's a few pictures of the new beds.

And here's a picture of the dirt pile I have left! Can you say "more?" OK, so I overestimated a little.

So the plan for this coming weekend is moving more stuff, building a couple more beds, finish the watering system (I started this but it wasn't in the cards to get finished), and just more zombie- like work. You can see the soil that we have above. Bermuda grass is what we can grow. And it is infested with those pesty fleas/whatever. Not fun when you have sweat pouring off of you and they're in your face!

The Wife, bless her heart, dug up her Azaleas and replanted them at the house by herself.

Suffice it to say, we've been busy.

First let me say, The Wife posted pictures of me "Tossing Dirt" at my urging. I thought it would be great to use here. But after much consideration of my attire of the day (hiking boots, tee shirt, gym shorts, Titleist hat and shades) I thought better than to use those images for my profile. After almost 20 years of marriage, I still got it! Or I couldn't find something else to wear.

Secondly, my neighbor pokes his head off of his deck as says "Hey, I see you're building some deer feeders." Great, something else to deal with.

Off to bed because I'm beat and another early, long day, (shit) today. Be safe out there kids.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Wife posts...again

The Hubs and the Wof are staying at the new house while the boy and I are making the trip back and forth and are sleeping at the current house - and since we have no Internet at the new house yet, I am posting again...

We are slowly but surely making some progress.  Remember the Pod Dude that was my hero on Friday night?  Well, after unloading the bulk of the stupid thing on my own (the boy was playing paintball and the Hubs was working on garden beds) - Pod Dude isn't my friend anymore!!  I do have to admit between my Santa collection and my scrapbook/craft stuff, a lot of what was in the pod was my stuff anyway :)

The Hubs came up with the idea for this sequence of shots --- pretty cool idea given the title of his blog:

Get it?  TOSSING DIRT!!!

and the beds themselves:

The WOF supervised --- she is NOT loving her new house.  I think we may have to go to some doggie downers until we get settled in a bit.  As long as we are in the house she is OK.  I am really worried about what she is going to do when we have to go to work and she is there alone. 

Of course, just when good progress was happening on moving the monster dirt pile

The rain came --- and man, did it rain...

Remember last week's landscaping? 

But where there is rain....

It is hard to see, but there were two rainbows - this is the view from the front porch.

And finally - as you do what ever it is you do to celebrate Memorial Day, please take a few moments to remember the real reason for the day - THANK YOU to all the heroes who paid the ultimate price so that we can all enjoy the freedoms that we often take for granted.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Well That Kinda, Almost Sucked

Had the Pack Rat sitting on our driveway for about a month and a half. Called May 16th to make arrangements for it's move to the new homestead this weekend. So, I get off work at noon today and thought that I'd cruise by the old house and see if they'd picked it up. Nope, still there. So as I'm starting my drive to Harnett County I thought to myself, "call these people and double- check that we're on their schedule." Called their office and,
Me: My name is such and such at blank address. I was just making sure that our POD is being moved today as this is the weekend we planned this.
Rat: Well sit, I don't see you on our list. We are swamped with work and I don't think we'll be able to get it today.
Me: OK, can you try tomorrow morning. We need to move.
Rat: Let me check with my supervisor.
Really annoying music interrupted by ads describing how great they are.
Rat: Well sir, we can't do it today. We can move it Tuesday if that's OK.
Me: Are you crazy? We have been planning this for a while! Let me talk to the Supervisor.
Rat: His name's Tony and he's on the phone at the moment.
Me: That's the person I set it up with! Let me leave a message and please make sure he calls me.

Some time later......

Tony: Sir, I understand that you say you scheduled a move today but we do not have you in our system. We are off over the weekend through to Tuesday.
Me: Tony, that is not going to work, period.
Tony: Where exactly are we supposed to be dropping the unit off at?
Me: blank and blank address.
Tony: Ohhhhhhhhhh, I remember you because I remember that address. Hold on.
More annoying music.....
Tony: Ok, let me see what I can do. I remember our conversation but for some reason the system didn't process my input. We are very busy but let me try to work something out.

So, now we are trying to figure out what to do for the weekend and maybe have to speed unload the Rat next weekend (we also have tickets to The Prairie Home Companion show next weekend too. The Youngest boy likes to listen to NPR with me. Go figure.) The Wife wasn't happy.

Get a call while driving back up north to old home.
Tony: Hey, I'm on my way (needs directions.)
Me: That's great! This will make things easier for us for this move.
Tony: See you in about twenty minutes. I may call back for directions.
Me: Sounds good.
The Wife happy now

So now I'm almost home to speed mow the lawn here and get that out of the way when I get another call.

Tony: Hey, my transmission started slipping so I stopped at the warehouse to get another truck but I have to stop and get gas too, so I'm running a little behind.
Me: As long as you get it moved, you could show up at midnight!
Tony: Really?
Me: No.

The guy shows up at 7:45 pm to load up and move the unit. And his drive will be a long one. It's a good 40 minutes for us without traffic. Being the long weekend EVERYONE was heading east on I40 to the beach. His gps said he would get there a 8:44 pm. He may have made it there by 9:25 pm. As long as it's there. 

PODdude as the Wife calls him. 

Long weekend ahead. She gets to unload the Rat and I have to build beds and move the 10 yards of 50/50 mix I had dropped of today. Also run the water lines and set up the drip irrigation system. Then come back to old house and tear apart a bed, dig up some of our plants here, yada, yada, yada. No internet yet and barely any cell service at new place. Had to get satellite dish as cable's not out there. But man it's sooooooo quiet! Except for the stupid rooster that crows all day. Not sure what his problem is? Maybe something tomorrow night if I'm not too beat. Enjoy yourself kids and be careful out there.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The Wife hijacks the blog

With permission, of course - Jay is on the road so I am posting the photos he was unable to post last night...and besides, if I do this, I am able to avoid packing the youngest son's room for a little while longer :)

Here is the before of the house - it is hard to see the landscaping, but it is a singular row of what I like to refer to as "cat pee bushes".  They are really boxwoods of some sort, but they smell like cat pee and I hate them.  And we all know, when the momma ain't happy ----

It might not look like it, but this is a pretty good sized bed.  We didn't really measure when went on our trek to get landscape fabric and of course, we ran out, so off I went to the big metropolis down the road to get more.  As the oldest son likes to say, we have moved to the middle of freaking no-where - which was the plan, but we are used to having a lot of shopping options literally just around the corner from our house.  At the end of the day, this is what the bed looks like:

And a little ode to the oldest son and his fellow Marines - Semper Fi boys!

Clearly we have lots more to do and if I can keep the Hubs away from the neighbors and their beer fridges we will be in good shape! Until next time - I will leave you with the WOF of the week shot...she isn't loving her new rural home (and we had to make a trip to the vet today to deal with her new allergy to the carpet and drywall dust - seriously, not kidding here).

Thanks for reading,
The Wife

Monday, May 21, 2012


have I been? More aptly where haven't I been. It has been a crazy few weeks and about to get crazier. We closed on the house this past Wednesday, had the garage floor coating company in Friday morning and to finish up today, spent the better part of this past weekend moving in miscellaneous stuff and redoing the front landscaping as the contractor that did it originally didn't put down landscape fabric! Now Tami may know what this type of Kudzu grass is but I do not. This crap grows along the ground and when you go to pull it up, you keep pulling and pulling! The roots of this stuff are 5'-0" away from you and the root system should be used for foundations at trailer parks. Once it's established, you can't pull it out! I don't know but the whole front beds were full of them. If they could make this stuff edible, it would solve world hunger. This shit will grow on and around a rock. We also had some wonderful people come and help us unload a heavy desk Saturday morning that we wouldn't have been able to do ourselves. Thanks Dreama, Bill, and Don. And Don, if you're reading this, do not, and I repeat, do not bring another item to be used for work at this house! If you come again, have a cooler in hand and chairs! Seriously, thanks for your help and "lended" items that have come in very handy! Folks, it's people like the ones above that keep this world spinning in the right direction.

Supposed to be a picture here but this hotel's internet sucks big time! All pictures will be in next post then.

One thing I am looking forward to is that I am building my beds this coming weekend (between unloading boxes from the Rat), running water lines (learning pex plumbing) and FINALLY getting my plants in the ground! I have enough more than ready to go in, and I'm tired of seeing everyone else's blogs and how they are doing so well! :) Not really tired of it but envious. All of this going on and we are slammed at work so badly that I have my laptop and my work laptop going at the same time in this rat trap. Nothing like multitasking. Oh, and the wife and I are texting too. Funny, texting is coming up as a mispelled word. I have a good space picked out in the far corner of the yard for initially 5-6 4'-0" x 10'-0" beds. Need to get a good dirt source (this will be the wife's duty) and have it delivered Saturday morning. Then the work begins. Yeah!

We have met, well, most of the neighbors (there's 12 houses in this neighborhood) and all seem like good people. A couple even have beer fridges so I'won't feel the odd man out now. They are also Harley riders so that may be in the distant future. Not likely but one can dream. Rather have an Indian but not at $28,000.00. No way! I want to retire some day.

Well, enough of this boring shit so I'll say goodnight and get back to work. And texting.

And for those of you that noticed that I misspelled mispelled, congrats! I know the wife did and I'll hear about this later. :)

Saturday, May 12, 2012

She Thinks my Tractor's Sexy

Well she may not think it's sexy but I like it.

Made a trip to the big box store of Home Depot (for some reason I like it better than Lowes) today to get a refrigerator for the new house. Picked out a nice one after debating for about an 1/2 hour between two. After that we cruised on over to look at lawn tractors as we'll definitely have the need for it now. I've had my eye on a Cub Cadet for a while as they seem to review well from other users. Took lees time to pick it out and believe it or not, it was cheaper than the fridge!

We were going to have them deliver it but they wanted a delivery charge so we just brought it back here. Felt kinda stupid mowing the small yard we have here with it until I got done and wasn't sweating and tired. Didn't feel to stupid then. Even mowed the next door neighbor's front yard.

Poor, poor Woffie. Went to the Vet Friday to get her nail and teeth done and have a small bump on her nose taken off. You'd think she had major reconstructive surgery the way she's whining around. But she does like her pain medicine.

Tired tonight so heading to bed. More tomorrow. :)

Monday, May 7, 2012

Frontier House

There was a show which I believe was broadcast on PBS many years ago called Frontier House. The wife and I learnt about it through one of our fellow coworkers many years ago. So being the series junkies we are, we ordered the VHS set of the series (remember video tapes?)

Well it just so happens that the DIY network is re-airing the series, so I set the DVR to record it so we can watch it again. The first two episodes are already to be viewed so now we have to find the time to view them. Basically, they take three families into the wilderness of Montana and let them live off of the land as during the Homestead Act of the 1880s. All conditions are as they were in those days with no modern conveniences. From memory it is interesting to see how each family group copes with their new surroundings and each other. All are given identities that they must follow and prepare for the upcoming winter season, along with several surprises that the producers throw their way, such as a cattle drive through their property. If you haven't seen this, it is good viewing. Makes you wonder how we modern people would be able to assimilate into 1880s life, leaving running water, toilets, fast food, phones, etc. behind. I'm sure it wouldn't be easy at first but overcoming the odds and situations are what we do best. At least most of us. Still can't convince the wife to go camping in a tent where there are perfectly good hotels nearby :) Here's the link to the website- Frontier House

Yee Haw!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Cleaning up and Blah

Well, second post of the day.
I spent the better part of yesterday morning to mid afternoon mulching the front bed of the house and planting some Petunias and Marigolds I bought. We're moving soon so I can take them with me and it makes the front of the house look better. I normally don't by too many store plants but this year we've been behind the eight ball on getting things going so let's at least get the place looking livable and lived in. Look close enough and you can see the Red Solo Cup transplants ready for the new house. Even the Azaleas are blooming good.

Also set some transplants out back today to start their hardening off. Cloudy all day per the forecast so there wasn't any chance (maybe slim) of me killing this batch. All's good and they seemed to like to outdoors when I put them away tonight.

Then the youngest boy and myself took a trip down to the new house to see how things were progressing. Not too much change in how things are going. They did have the main power hooked up and did some cleaning. All of the flooring is in, walls painted and cleaned up. I believe all we need now is grass, the stove, and a closing. We are trying to get the closing moved up a week earlier as the rental company that has our house wants to start showing it to customers although we are paid through to the end of June. I understand their need to do this and it is per contract but we also told them of the mess we have here plus we'll hopefully be out mostly by the end of May. Who knows. 

Looking good! Hope everyone's doing OK. Be careful kids...

Happy Sundays

I have a good schedule for my Sundays. It suits me well.
Sleep in a little, get up and make coffee, read the paper on the couch and watch the morning shows, which for me are This Old House, Ask This Old House, America's Heartland, and This American Land.

Lazy morning I know but it works for me. If we got the gardens going, then it will be an early morning for me but for now, couch time it is. Got a lot done outside around the house yesterday so I'll share that later today. May even run down to the house this morning. Gotta run, This American Land is coming on.