Thursday, March 9, 2017

We had a bit of a blow.

No damage here at the Ponderosa,  and I'll be a little smug here and attribute that to what I'd like to think of as due diligence.

I mean, we've spent quite a few bucks over the years making sure that trees that were too close to the house or looking poorly were summarily dispatched.   We had one that was right on the property line between the two houses at the back.  I think that was the very first one to go,  way back in 1992 not long after we moved here.

It so happened that I had to take a little road trip this morning,  and couldn't help but notice that one of our neighbours was indeed pretty damned lucky that this tree didn't fall the other way.

This was a perfectly healthy tree,  but I have a theory.

See,  I'm really reluctant to water our lawn.  I figure, it's grass,  and if it gets a little brown along sometime in August say,  it'll come back in due time.   So my theory is,  if you water your grass to the point that it'll stay green,  the grass isn't the only thing getting the water,  as any tree in the vicinity is going to siphon off as much water as it can get.   The unfortunate result is,  the roots of the tree don't need to go down any deeper than where it's going to find water.  Then the wind comes up, and your tree takes a tumble.  

Hopefully not on your house.

Trees are wonderful,  but if you have them in a suburban setting,  you'd best be keeping an eye on them,  and make sure they're well rooted.

But hey,  that's just a theory.

Just today T.C. and I were eyeing the two remaining ash trees in the side yard.   We had one taken down last summer,  and I know in my heart of hearts that the remaining two have "the bug" and will need to get removed at some point in the next several months.
Sad but true.

That'll just leave the one oak tree,  which is seems to be fine.

Oh,  and the other little thing that came to our attention as a result of the wind yesterday?   Well,  a transport driver was driving his unloaded tractor trailer across the Burlington Skyway (a bridge around these parts for anyone not familiar)  and in spite of the signs saying,  "High winds on Skyway",  he figured he'd be fine,  right up until the moment when the wind knocked over his trailer.  
He came out of it unscathed,  read about it here if you'd care to.

I'm not about to offer any opinions as to the "state of mind" of this individual.  You can come to your own conclusions.

When another transport driver was briefly interviewed,  he was of the opinion that getting blown over was pretty much what you could expect if travelling light over the bridge when there are high winds.


That's today's missive.   Trying to be more consistent in that department.

Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Good thing it's a bit warmer out.

Otherwise I wouldn't be able to open the bathroom window.

I guess I must have missed the memo concerning the smell of the waterproofing agent I'm using for the shower.  It's something akin to the overwhelming smell you get just as you trowel out one of those monster nuggets from the bottom of the kitty litter pan.  You know, reeking of ammonia?

Travelling Companion is out for the day,  but I'm not so sure the smell will be gone by the time she gets back.


And we don't have a cat.

Of course,  I do vividly recall going into the other bathroom,  where the kitty litter was kept (back in the cat days)  and thinking,  "Oh my gawd,  somebody needs to clean that out!".

Of course,  nine times out of ten  "Somebody"  was me.

Not one of my favourite things.

The stuff is called "Redguard",  and there's a very good chance that I don't really need it,  but there will not be any "do-overs" when it comes to this bathroom.  Plus,  I could see where there had been water issues in the past,  and that was with a mortar bed and tiles.  The chances of anything moving at this point are slim to none,  but just the same.

Now,  speaking of "things that move",  this house has settled over the last fifty years or so,  and one of the very last doors that needed sorting out has been the door to the very bathroom I'm working on.

In hindsight (it's a wonderful thing,  isn't it?)  I really should have sorted out this door a long,  long time ago,  but that would have meant doing exactly what I did,  and that was taking off the trim,  cutting the nails holding the hinge side jamb in place,  and squaring up the frame.


What would renovation be like without a reciprocating saw?  Boggles the mind.

It doesn't *look* like a lot of work,  but getting the frame and the top there to form some sort of right angle did seem to take me an awfully long time.    You'll notice at the top there how there's considerably less on the left side as opposed to the right?
That's how much the house has moved.

Hopefully it's done.  

I think so anyway.

That's not the door that will be there when I'm all finished.  We have that door.  It's sequestered in another room at the moment.  You'll see it in due time.

I think the first coat of my smelly goop has dried,  so I'll go back in,  try not to gag,  and put on the final coat.

Keep your stick on the ice.

Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Dead squirrel on the lawn.

And no,  that's not click bait.  There actually was a dead squirrel on the lawn the other morning.
I didn't race out and take a picture because,  well,  why would I?

I did want to see what might have caused its demise,  but it was just out of range of the one camera on that side of the house.

Turns out,  I did get a screen capture a bit later on.

The poor little bugger was missing his head and the meat off his (her?) forearms.

Dead stock isn't really my cup of tea,  so you'll notice that really didn't sling the corpse over my shoulder or anything.

This has happened once before,  a few months back.   Some time last fall I think it was.  That time there was only a skeleton.  Freshly stripped,  mind you.  I'm guessing Coyote.  We do have them around here.  Not unhappy about that either,  as they keep the rabbits in check.  And apparently,  the squirrels,  although we still have an abundance of squirrels.

I don't have quite the hate on for them these days,  as they can no longer get up on the house and chew on the cedar beams.   Those are now covered with copper caps,  so even if they could get up there, nothing to chew on.

I'm still plugging away in the bathroom.  Bedroom is done. New set of picture hung up and such.

I had to tear away a wee bit more old plaster before continuing to button things up,  as I could definitely feel "cold" on one section of the old wall.

Turns out,  I could see daylight out past the beam.

 Best way I can show it is if you go back and forth between these two images.  You can see daylight.
This is a beam that runs out from this outside wall to the end of the "Veranda" as we call it.
Actually,  in the "screen capture",  it's the one that runs over and sits on the pillar outside the front door.

Not well insulated.

No worries.

With the addition of foil backed Styrofoam and some goop around the end of the beam,  it's all good.

And then it's back to the taping and such.  Which is ongoing.

Stay tuned.

Or not.

Thanks for stopping by.