Sunday, November 30, 2008

My Mini Vacation Is Nearly Over

I have gotten a few things accomplished. I still have more to do and today is the last day of my Thanksgiving holiday.

I pruned the tomatoes back yesterday.

Don't laugh, the bush was all the way over the picket fence and over the sidewalk. You had to step into the gutter to go around the plant. It was HUGE.

I still feel a little guilty, it was still loaded with blossoms, but the weather is getting cooler, I don't think it'll set fruit this late in the year. I harvested the green tomatoes, so I need to look up a recipe for fried green tomatoes.

I only pruned it back to the fence, I really should prune the bushes a bit on the inside so I can mow my patch of lawn.
And I need to weed whack over to the right of the gate.

And I have some things covered with plastic on the front porch, I need to arrange them a bit better.

OOOh, and there's hummingbirds at my feeders, I just saw one flit by.

Well, I guess I'd better get busy.

I still have to put a little more roofing tar on that low spot. I've got it almost done, there was just a little water standing after the rains last week. The roof didn't leak anyway, I got the cracked spot patched. So that's a plus.

I didn't work on my shed project at all. Oops.

I'm STILL unpacking and arranging books. I think I have an OCD problem when it comes to books...

Well, guess I'd better get busy before the Raider game. (Hey, I have my priorities straight! Football season is too short!)

Duty calls and my mini vacation is nearly over.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

We Give Thanks Today

My parents are here for the weekend, so while they're out at the gun club at the Toys 4 Tots shoot, I'm cooking.

Here's the menu:

Smoked turkey
Dressing with sausage and chard
Mashed potatoes
Gravy
Yams with brown sugar and pineapple
Pea salad (green peas, cheese, mayo, Ranch dressing and spices)
Apple Walnut Salad
Sweet potato pie
Apple pie

Still debating about mac and cheese....

Tomorrow, they go back to Oregon, and I'll be at work. Next weekend will be my long weekend and I have MUCH to do.

Yes, we'll have turkey again on Thanksgiving Day, I'll smoke a small turkey and we'll go to my neighbor's for dinner.

We are truly blessed to be together today.

We give thanks today, and every day.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Hockey -- The Perfect Working Parent Sport!

Roller Hockey, the perfect working parent's sport!

The practice and games are all on the weekends, usually just on Saturdays. So I don't have to try to transport a child to practices and games during the week. Since I really can't do all that, I have a J-O-B, hockey has the perfect schedule for me!!

video

The Golden Compass Movie -- Rated Just OK

I haven't written about The Golden Compass. For one thing, I haven't read the books yet. Perhaps I'll ask for them for Christmas.

We did go see the movie and to be honest with you, I wasn't all that impressed.

The special effects were so-so.

The story line kinda dragged in spots.

And I left the movie feeling like there should have been much, much more. Compared to richly layered storyline and textures of the Lord of the Rings, The Golden Compass fell flat.

Now, I do have to say that both of my kids, the teen and the preteen, liked it. Apparently it is reaching the target audience.

But for me, while it's an interesting premise, the movie fell flat.

(And did anyone else notice the evil woman was named Coulter? Hmmm, is there another Coulter in real life that's just as nasty? Probably a coincidence, but hey, I noticed it...)

Rated just OK, although I did buy the DVD.

(My personal scale is AWESOME, Good, OK, DVD ONLY, Don't think so, and NOPE.)

Update On The Leak

Whew! Not as bad as I feared.

The freaking contractor left a low spot that got a puddle of standing water. Of course at a spot where the roofing paper has a seam.

So I have the Henry's, I have the tape, I have a friend coming over today. We're just going to use the Henry's, tape over the seams, more Henry's, and level out that low spot.

And while we're at it, I have a caulking gun and plenty of tubes of roof repair tubes to go around every bit of flashing.

I'll fix the ceiling in the spring, after I'm sure I've fixed the leak.

FYI folks, if you ever have a leak, punch a small hole through the ceiling where the water is coming through. Now you can make sure it drains out into a bucket and you don't have to worry about the ceiling falling in. Believe me, it will dry out just fine, especially if you leave it open for a while. Also, it will be way easier to patch a little hole than to redo the entire ceiling.

I was thinking about repainting my ceiling anyway, there's a new product that you add to the paint that helps insulate. Interesting stuff, I'll talk about it later in another post.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Black Like Me

With all that's happened on the American political scene, I think it's well past time that we reread "Black Like Me" by John Griffin.

We have come so far, and yet in so many ways, we are still so, so stuck in the fifties.

Is it because another generation will have to pass, so there's no one left who remembers riding in the front of the bus, because it was a white right -- and of course, "white was right" during those many long years since this country was founded?

In my opinion, we need to revisit our past before we can look forward to our future.

We need to remember how SHAMEFULLY our Brothers and Sisters were treated, so we can see how and why there is such joy in the Black community today. Validation is the right word. I heard someone say it today. Validation. Our Brothers and Sisters have been validated.

Hope has been rekindled in America.

We need to go back and reread "Black Like Me" to remember how bad it was, and see just how far we have come, and then check out today's Internet to see just how far we have to go.

Take a step back from the drama, take a step back and review our sad history of race relations in America.

Reread "Black Like Me" and remember how it used to be.

And worse, at the end of the book, remember how John Griffin and his family moved to Mexico to escape the hate. Yes, John Griffin was absolutely hated because he had passed into Black America, and then returned to tell the truth of what it's like to be a Black man in America.

The attitudes that drove Griffin out of Texas still exist today.

There are many who will deny it.

Reread "Black Like Me" and reflect upon how much America has changed and then contemplate, if you can, on how much has stayed the same.

Trust me, there's still a deep undercurrent of racist thoughts and behaviors in this country.

But hope has been rekindled in America.

Links:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Like_Me
http://www.aaregistry.com/detail.php?id=955

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

DANG IT!!

Darn, darn, darn!!

I had a LOT of work done on my house, finished it about a year and a half ago. Actually, the contractor never did finish, but I got my final from the building department, so I thought it was all good.

I converted the garage into a master bedroom and bath.

Well, we had a lot of rain since last Thursday night and tonight, when I got home, I notice there was a bit of water on my new bathroom floor.

Hmmm....

And then I looked up.

My roof leaked.

DANG IT ALL!!

I do NOT want this man working on my house any more. I'm torn between calling him and telling him to get over here and find where it's leaking, or calling the Contractor's Licensing Board and having them deal with him while I get a roofing guy to take a look at my roof.

Darn it all.

I was supposed to get a new roof over that section of the house, but because of changes required by the building inspector, the plan was changed. Now, I wanted a new roof anyway, but he talked me out of it, claiming that it would cost a lot more. And he assured me that the roof would be fine, it wouldn't leak.

Well, with the other things he screwed up, I ended up with the same amount as it would have cost to put a blasted new roof over it. Like I insisted it would. And he insisted it wouldn't.

Personally, I think he was tired of the job and just wanted out of it by then.

I don't even want to go into how he took so long to "finish" that I got utterly screwed on my refi...

So I'm not sure what I'm going to do. I'm so mad I could spit nails.

I did punch a hole in the drywall so it could drain, and there was only a tiny bit of water, so that's one blessing, I really may only have one spot that needs a patch because it really did rain a LOT last weekend. But it will have to wait for next weekend, because I am NOT getting on the roof in the dark.

Sigh.

If it's not one thing, it's another.

I'll sleep on it, it's not like I can do anything more tonight. Other than check the weather report.

DARN IT ALL!!