Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Late Spring

It has been a cold and rainy couple of months - right back to when it stopped being cold and snowy.

The lake is at full pool and there is still a schwackload of melt to come down. We haven't had to move the boats up but we have put one set of blocks under the stretchers and the coach-boat is hauled further up every day. The last time the lake was this high, the old bridge was still across the lake and the cables anchoring the floating part actually had to be lengthened. It was some odd bumping up rather than down. The Sr Boy was working in town and he would provide daily reports at the supper table of the number of wharves newly weighted down with barrels full of water. Sump pumps were considered reasonable Fathers' Day gifts.

I, for one, am not unhappy about this long wet season. The gully is a swale of grasses that come up to my chest and from last year's new deck, I can see where the deer have trailed through and the quail babies have a place safe from the neighbourhood cats. It also means that my slothfulness at getting the planter boxes and buckets planted is not the disaster it could have been: everything is now in and enjoying the cool settling. The two basil plants from the market turned out to be six so now I'm waiting for basil, feta, and tomato salad (but not holding my breath).

Next up is re-filling (and re-filling and re-filling) the green bin. The three I filled this week (mine + 2 neighbours') barely made a dint in the pine needles and the lot below me is a wildfire waiting to happen as its owner doesn't believe in disturbing nature. (She'll be some disturbed if it goes up in smoke and I'll be somewhat more than that!) Seriously considering 'getting someone in' - preferably someone with a big pick-up and a good raking ethic. The Jr Boy was here yesterday with a friend and an empty utility trailer to pick up a bike. Unfortunately, they had a tight time-frame and it didn't include a trip to the dump with a load of yard refuse. Maybe I could get the local fire guys to come over for a practice wildfire burn?

Maybe I could simply keep going at it one hour at a time.

Still breathing.

Monday, June 06, 2011


It's finding a place to hang the wind chime because the carefully crafted screen framework is gone from the south deck (now that I have two new decks, I am reduced to cardinal directions).

It's deciding to scrape and paint the planter boxes even though it is only the paint holding them together because there is no one to build new ones with the same attention to angles and I'm not going to learn how nor buy the necessary equipment this year.

It's the phone calls from friends who notice dates and check in.

It's drinking a lot of soda and tonic instead of gin.

It's staying up too late because the light is longer, later, and the evening air is almost a gossamer embrace.

It's 16 cans to the paint recycling. Which one of us decided that it was ok to hang onto cans of stain rusted shut?

It's thinking/not thinking "five years ago, I was making you a chicken sandwich from the ward frig and I found you some ice cream and apple juice to go with it."

It's trying not to go down.

Still breathing

Friday, June 03, 2011

One more sign

In the interests of not embarrassing myself (not too much anyway), there are a few pre-summer (and wedding - yikes!) things happening here: to wit: repainting of deck chairs and tables. There are six of the former, two of the latter and all of the Adirondack persuasion. Think: really comfortable wooden chair with armrests wide enough for both G&T and the cryptic crossword that takes me a week to (sometimes) finish. Also think: slats. Lots of slats. There will be a small pause here whilst I go out to the garage and count the slats.......


15 per chair, 9 per table which works out to 4[(6 x 15) + (2 x 9)] = a lot of fiddly painting (the 4 is because all four sides of the slats have to be done, right?) Of course, it helps that the finish on the chairs is really good (Gr 9 woodwork class, $50.00 each = Total Bargain) and that the tables are so old that they are more or less in pieces which will be put back together but which makes the 4-sidedness a bit more bearable but it is still a lot of slats along with the other essentials such as legs and armrests. The chairs are blue (4) and anotherblue (2) and the tables black. The anotherblue I invented by mixing some wrongblue with the black until it was the rightblue but is maybe really grey.

I've gotten quite organized - I do them back/bottom-side first because there seems to be more of that (do not try to logic me out of this idea - it is working quite well for me thankyouverymuch) and then flip them upright when dry and do the much smaller amount of top.

Flipped the first chair and there was the sign:

there are paint runs.

The Sr Boy would never have had paint runs - and if by chance one sneaked in, it would have been sanded to a faretheewell. Turns out, I am not TSB: I apologized to him, knocked the worst off with the brush handle and painted on.

It's coming up five years.

Funny how some paint runs conflate time and distance.

Still breathing

Wednesday, June 01, 2011


In two months, The Jr Girl will be wed which means that this house will have been turned upsidedown, another new deck built (so the future in-laws don't end up suing me after falling through the old one), all the wooden garden furniture stained, all the pots planted, the driveway raked, AND the shambles that is The Former Front Lawn will either be de-shambled or have become a campground/trailer park (don't tell The Jr Girl about the latter possibility) for various itinerant (hopefully not indigent) guests.

In two months, the whole shebang will be (more or less) done and I will be sitting outside with an XXL G&T reflecting on being a mother-in-law. Or maybe simply laughing over the various inevitable "challenges" that a wedding creates.

The local crow may join me with a few comments on the event but there won't be any cedar waxwings.

They were today - flying like they call - in larrups - and settling and lifting and settling and lifting. They pass through, markers of the late spring shift from winter to summer and warners of imminent snow in the late fall. There was new snow last week on the hills - I hope they aren't confused about which way they are going.

Lots to do.

Still breathing.