Tuesday, The 26th

After another night of thunderstorms and rain, I was up early to roll the trash barrel out to the street. I figured if I put it out last night, it could have been blown over by the wind, dumping out garbage all over the street…so I got up a 7:30 (yes!) today, and by the time I was done with that, I was wide awake and decided to stay up.

There are more prescriptions to pickup, but have chosen to wait until the last possible minute to go get those.

I did crank up the bbq pit yesterday, and cooked some Italian dressing with lemon pepper marinated chicken breasts, my bbq hot wings, and some burgers, that I flattened out to the size of a fry pan with a roll pin.

I decided to cook them mid afternoon to beat the rain…good thing too, as the rains came later, after I finished cooking, and put the grill away.

I usually use ground buffalo mixed with ground chuck for the burgers, but my ground buffalo turned out to be Angus beef disguised as buffalo; they are packaged the same in the squares. The buffalo will  keep the burgers from shrinking as much, due to the low fat content. I cooked 4 8oz patties, that shrunk to the size of a large bun, which I didn’t have…no matter. Very good. The buffalo burgers can break easily, and that’s why I mix the ground chuck; with it’s fat content, it makes the burgers more…pliable, shall we say. A broken burger on the grill is bad, as they usually fall into the fire.

I cook the burgers with the chicken breasts, as the breasts were HUGE. I had to leave them on until everything was cooked to get them done, they were so thick.

The hot wings are on second after burgers come off as they have to be brushed with their marinade, and cooking on too high a heat will  burn the sauce, so they cook slowly and are turned often.

I also discovered that I need to replace both grates on my Weber; lo and behold, both Lowe’s and HD were out of them. My chimney starter needs replacing too, as it has now rusted through. It was a shitty one anyway, the way the handle attaches.

The grates are supposedly stainless steel, but they rust badly. I figured it is because I leave the charcoal in to burn down before covering, and leave everything there. Even though technically, the charcoal is not hard wood, it has hard wood in it. Hard wood ash mixed with water makes what?……Lye…very corrosive.

I bought some welding gloves to aid in handling the hot utensils, and being so close to the fire…they work well. I haven’t figured out how to keep the smoke from following me around though except for wearing goggles.

I made some oven fries, and they were the best I ever made.

I think I’ll take the night off from cooking tonight, unless there is a request for more fries.

Sure would like some cheesecake though…


Stormy Weather

Yesterday, I spent more than usual time out in the gardens. It was cooler, and that made it  a little more tolerable.

The night before yielded rain and thunderstorms, making the ground much softer. Still some weed pulling to do…and still more to do.

I transplanted the onions; three varieties, bell peppers, jalepenos, and serrano peppers. In the same garden, I planted two rows of carrots.

Last night, another round of thunderstorms roared through for about 5 hours. We were under every kind of advisory out there: flash flooding, high winds up to 60 mph, tornado warnings, hail, and severe lightning and thunder.

The thunder shook the stuff on our tables, window sills, ice in our glasses, and lightning flashes so close that the solar dusk to dawn lights flickered off momentarily, then came back on.

The wife loves this kind of weather…I don’t mind it, because there’s nothing one can do about it. Just hope there is no wind damage.

These systems have sprung (sprang) up from the west, and moved from West Texas to the east, for the past several days now. The hotter it gets during the day, the worse the storms are. Yesterday, it was 94 here.

I have not been outside this morning. It’s probably too muddy to work in the garden, although I am curious as to whether or not (weather, whether) the weather did any damage to the new transplants.

The wife recovered from the r/a flare-up, and was back to her chipper self.

She said she killed a big scorpion yesterday, climbing the outside wall on the patio, and has requested another round of spraying.

We planted a passion vine into a whiskey barrel, with a teepee like trellis, on which the vine can climb. It survived the storm too.

It was made of three sections of quarter round moulding, tied together at the top in a criss cross fashion, and anchored by rocks. With a little training, it should be flourishing by end of summer, if she can keep it watered.

I thawed out a bunch of meat to bbq today…that will depend on the weather, but I’ll have to do it early before the rains set in; burgers, Italian dressing chicken, and my fave bbq hot wings.

I also filled a garden with corn; about 20 rows of 3 plants across, with an extra one tossed in here and there.

I still need to get the beans in the ground, and looks like I’m gonna do pole beans, and a type of bush bean.

The last garden will be okra, melons, and squash.

I started some new tomato plants inside under the grow light, and will try to get one more good Roma plant going, and a beefsteak.

Of course, weeds like rain too, and they are popping up all over. The yard is almost a jungle now, as I continue to neglect it. At least I got the ditch mowed.

I got all the irrigation fixed, and will use it…when the rains stop.

More rain forecast for today…I guess that will cause the rodeo to be cancelled again…it’s kinda like Indy…it rains every Memorial day here (almost) and 4th of July (almost) when they schedule the rodeos.

This town is big on parades too…Memorial Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, are very popular in the local lore as anyone can be in the parade. Folks ride longhorn steers, donkeys, pull covered wagons, old cars, tractors, whatever one has can be in the parade down main street from Highway 16, up 173 through town…about half a mile or so.

The parades go by the courthouse square, which usually has several vendors selling all kinds of food and souvenirs.

As for the rest of the day, I am planning to bbq before the rain arrives.

The fire is started, and am hoping can get all cooked in time.

Looks like I’ll need another charcoal grill, and cooking grill for my Weber.

The garden was unscathed, after a brief tour outside.

It’s warm and very muggy, with no wind…thunderstorm weather.

Enjoy the day all!

Saturday, the 23rd

I did make it out to the garden yesterday, and worked on the irritation lines, replacing one leaky one, and tried to fix the leaky head units. The head units are what I call where the on/off valves are.

From the head unit, a short length of t-tape branches out into usually 4 t-tape lines, that run the length of the garden, using elbows and in line connectors, in necessary.

I got all the garden lines replaced that were squirting geysers, and worked on the fitting to which the valve attaches. It has a mish mash of adaptors and reducers (not done by me) that have dilapidated over the years.

I bought some new fittings connecting directly to the valve unit, but they are barbed; I am unable to keep them from leaking even using two hose clamps; no doubt because they are barbed. Next time I’m in town, I’ll see if I can find a non barbed fitting. As is, they do leak, but not so much that I’m worried about it. We ARE on a well after all, and waste is waste.

I now have lost two  tomato plants…my guess is cutworms, as both of them just fell over at the soil level. Oh well, new seedlings are in the works. Normally, I wrap a small piece of aluminum foil around the stalk at soil level to keep the little bastiges away. I did not do that, and now I am punished for it. The little shits only eat the tomatoes when the stalks are small; not anything else. As the plant stalks get bigger, they shed the foil, and the cutworms do not eat the larger stalks.

Today I plan to plant corn; about 75 plants or so in one garden. I will use a hunk of cattle panel for a template, and plant a seed inside every other square to maintain some semblance of order. If they all come up and grow, it’ll be a jungle of corn.

I found a 1/4″ nut driver, only to discover that those clamps are too small to go around the t-tape and fitting. It’s always just one thing. My vintage quarter inch nut driver is missing still.

Gonna need a new one of those too.

The wife hurt her hand doing I-don’t-know-what yesterday, and was in a lot of pain last night..enough to take one her special Celebrex pills, and additionally, 3 ibuprofens. Apparently, nothing helped as she was up at least until 6 this morning.

The last time something like this happened, we ended up at the ER…and they could to nothing for her; even after a couple doses of Fentanyl…nothing helped.

Her r/a doctor told her that she cannot, must not, go to the hospital, or she would contract something, and surely die, given that r/a suppresses one’s immune system almost entirely.

It’s her rheumatoid arthritis flaring up, and there is nothing that can be done.

Meanwhile, I hate to wake her as I need to get dressed to go to the garden.

Enjoy your Saturday!

Happy Friday

In recent news, in case you missed it

President Trump has no plans to continue a White House tradition – the unveiling of the official portrait of his predecessor, President Obama

NBC: Trump abandons another presidential tradition to slap Obama

Yes, Trump finally gave Obamksi a public bitch slap by not having the portrait unveiling ceremony in the White House. No excused made, no options given…just “passed over”. Maybe there is more important stuff going on instead of further inflating Comrade Obasmki’s ego.

I saw that Governor Gretchen “Adolf” Whitmer of Michigan, tells the guppies that “Trump is not welcome here” and she is considering going after Ford Motor Company for allowing Trump to go maskless during his tour of the Ford plant yesterday…of course, this was after she asked Trump to declare a state of emergency in Michigan, due to the flooding by broken dams, due to negligence and lack of funding since she is as corrupt as the other democratic governors whose states are going broke.

I spent some time yesterday in the gardens, noticing some work that had to be done before implementing the irrigation. Some of the drip lines need replacing. I did replace two. Some of the older connections and elbows are leaking and have to be replaced with a newer version.

I’ll have to dig out my 1/4″ nut driver for the hose clamps I use to connect the t-tape to the fittings. I’m gonna have to pick up another one of those…I seem to have lost my other one.

Most of my hand tools are in my truck. There are three tool boxes in the pickup; two are mixed and one is a very complete Craftsman set my boys got for me. There is another tool box in the shed with tools I don’t use much, but over the years have their uses.

The tool box mounted on the truck has stuff like the trailer hitch, jumper cables, duck tape, a big hammer, a hunk of 2×4, ropes, tie downs, small shovel, bungee cords…stuff like that.

Given the recent theft out here and the crap that was stolen, I keep as much as I can now locked up.

Inside the house, there is a tool drawer with some tools I can access quickly, and my copier tool kit with many tools for fine work; files, jewler’s screwdrivers, assorted pliers, soldering tools, volt meter and the like.

One of the valves busted off the ears for the shutoff…that’ll require attention, and maybe replacement.

I lost one tomato plant; don’t know why. It bothered me at first, but then realized we rarely have any freezing weather here until November, so a late crop of tomatoes could be in the works.

I got bit by something during my garden visits…it itches like crazy, and three little blisters have cropped up, so not a skeeter or ant bite; probably a spider. I did find a snake skin during the weeding process too.

Jeans and boots are a must out there…such a pleasure when it’s hot and humid.

Pelosi says they will “closely monitor” mail in voting…yeah right.

I read that Corpus Christi NAS was the latest victim of terrorism, where a couple of ragheads drove through the gate, wounding a guard, but eventually getting “subdued”. One escaped. Details are sketchy. The wounded soldier was treated and released.

The garden awaits…