Update

Plumbing repairs are all holding…good.
Had to do some last minute checking on exposed water lines, as we are expecting snow tomorrow with temps likely to keep me indoors a couple days.
I rebuilt the carb on my chipper today as well. Still won’t start. Will run briefly if I prime it. Probably needs a valve job. Must get more tools.
Checked the air filter on my riding mower; remember the one I replaced the engine in June? That sombitch collapsed. I ordered three today, and commandeered the keys. That’s my project for next week.
I found a whole case of Castrol 10W-40 oil in the shed. What can I do with that?
Later…
Special congrats to Dr jim soon to be Grampa jim!

So What’s Goin’ On?

The new year arrived quieter than being in the city. Sure country folk shoot fireworks too, but expended ordnance doesn’t land on my roof.
It’s been unseasonably warm here with temps in the seventies, which will change by the weekend.
Wife went back yesterday, and does not return to the classroom until next week. She did manage to schedule a colonoscopy for herself on the 23 to address a problem she has been having. The last time she had it scheduled, she…you don’t want to know. I shall have to drive south to accompany her.
I have had more plumbing problems here. The kitchen faucet began leaking, and required replacement.
Well lemme tell you this: the leaking refused to be uninstalled, and for the life of me, I could not remove the nut that held the faucet to sink.
It seemed simple enough; one nut screwed onto a pipe, to which the sprayer was attached, just needed to be removed so as pull the faucet off the top.
At first, I was able to get a small crescent onto the nut, and turn it about an eighth of a turn, fighting for room with the general small space behind the sink bowls. Keep in mind that the space under the sink is not designed for a 270 lb 6 foot tall guy lying on his side. Then I figgered I could disassemble the faucet from the topside. That would work wouldn’t it?
FUCK no. There were more parts in that faucet than a 747 turbine.
Still not enough.
Back under I go with hammer and chisel. I chiseled about half the nut off before I realized I had missed the chisel so many times, my hand was now bleeding.
All right. That’s it.
Back under with the vice grips, with which I finally broke the damn spacer. The nut is still attached, however, but it came off.
Installation went much better.
Am I done?
Hell no.
All that thumping around under there, I musta bumped the trap as it began to leak.
At least I have running water now. It just a new compression washer.
Am I done now?
No.
The water heater in the spare bathroom keeps popping the thermal breaker, so I bought a new element.
The guy at HD tried to sell me an element wrench, and I scoffed saying I would use my trusty crescent.
NOT.
My 12 inch was too small, so I drug out the 15 incher.
Funny, the $7.87 for the element wrench doesn’t seem so ridiculous now.
The unit is not leaking, nor did the thermal breaker pop and the water is hot, so we’re calling the plumbing issues fixed (knock on wood).
It was such a nice day out, I shoulda been working outside on the chipper. S’posed to get colder as the week progresses.
No internet yet outside of the phones, and few options.
Am looking forward to purchasing a large tiller.
Will update.

It’s Christmastime…

This will be our first Christmas at the ranch. The wife will be driving up after her last day of school on the 22nd. She will stay through the first of the year. I just hope the kid doesn’t burn down our house while we’re away.
It has been a year of ups and downs, and I’m sure I speak for all of you as well as our family. This will be the first Christmas in my 60 years without Pop.

Some of the dancers remind me of the Petula Clark video I posted the other day.




3 years ago




Merry Christmas everyone

Meanwhile, Back At The Ranch…

It’s been fun, and time to return to the ranch. I just have this thing about leaving the place unattended, even though I have a neighbor that collects mail and keeps an eye out, and the yard man comes in too.
I do miss full blown internet, and postings to this blog will decrease. I do have a few extra that I have written already, but only for a couple days.
With the onset of winter, the biggest worry are exposed water lines. All the lines I have are covered and strapped with foam insulation.
Before I left, I noticed the heating unit in the bedroom side of the house was not working properly. I packed a portable electric heater for my trip back. Maybe time to figure out the woodstove, and fire it up.
The yard man cut down a huge oak tree that was threatening to fall on the bunkhouse. In doing so, a large branch fell onto the bunkhouse porch, and busted part of the roof and the rain gutter.
There is a stack of logs as big as a Volkswagen so far. The remaining two trunks have enough wood to actually cut lumber from it. These will all have to ‘season’ for a year before their trip to the woodbox.
The bunkhouse had a problem with the circuit breaker that kept the lighting. It would just pop without even a load on it. The work shop and store room also run off the breaker box for the bunkhouse, and I unplugged a non working florescent lamp, and the lights came on.
There are many large chunks of leftover trees from previous tree cuttings; some stumps large enough that in enough numbers, could be used as barrier to keep vehicles off the property. With a chainsaw, I could cut those up for firewood as well. As I said, there’s a lot of them.
The yard guy cleaned out the dead grass in the stump field. Perfect rattlesnake hiding places. Pop said he never saw one, but added that that doesn’t mean they’re not around.

I still would very much like to purchase a large tiller and work on the 2500 sq foot cornfield/watermelon patch during the winter. I wait for the opportunity to arrive (or my ship to come in).
I read recently that cola drinks are useful to add to a garden to speed up the composting process. You may remember I wrote a post about adding diluted molasses to the garden, which increases microbial activity beneath the surface; also keeping ants away. Worms are probably a good idea as well, I just am not sure if I can keep feeding them as they are voracious eaters.
The Direct TV contract is up in March for the house on the border. I am considering getting satellite internet for the ranch, and “cutting the cable”.
Before I know it, I figure I will be too busy day in and day out to sit on my ass in front of the 73″ television.
I also have a full blown chicken coop. Totally self-contained, with water and power in its own fenced yard. I just know nothing about them…although I have been reading a little. Pop said he looked into the coop last year, and it was rodent free as it was closed up tightly. We do have foxes, possums, raccoons, and skunks running around at night. Pop said that they eventually lost all their chickens because they got careless on closing up the coop at night, and the rodentia feasted.
The yard guy has begun to keep it mowed, apparently waiting for me to get something started out there.
I just heard the a/c kick on. Supposed to be 80 here today.
I’m heading north tomorrow.

December 19…Electoral College Vote Again?

I could hardly believe when I read that the EC will do a formal revote.
It seems to me that back in ’12, there was some controversy of voting fraud, but the dems said something like “what’re you gonna do about it?”
Now, here we are and the tables have turned, and the squeakiest wheels on the planet are getting all the grease.
Could we still get screwed?
Where has Swillary been since she got crushed in the official election?
All of a sudden, all these votes are popping up everywhere, and the dems are squawking about it.
http://globalguerrillas.typepad.com/globalguerrillas/2016/12/warning-the-electoral-coup-.html
http://m.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/dec/12/free-and-fair-election-seen-as-faulty-by-the-left/
Could a change in the EC vote switch the outcome of the election?
Could be time to bug out…again.