Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Random tired thoughts

I don't think this will be much of a post as I had a long day out in the yard. I've been industriously working on cleaning up the yard, wood, shed, porch and flower beds and spending 4-5 hours in the afternoon on it while Emily plays on a blanket and Ben studies his radiology. Yesterday I cleaned all the wood chips off the front bed and hauled them via an old tablecloth (piled the chips on and dragged the tablecloth) to the back to build up behind the greenhouse. Then I dug up the flower bed in the front, cut myself an insert for the trailer hitch so that I can fill it with dirt and grow some flowers in it like the neighbor does, wandered along the old railroad track path behind our house to find four railroad ties the right length to finish framing in a flower bed and ended up cutting them with the saw because they weren't quite the right length. The saw blade isn't deep enough so I had to cut as much as I could on all 4 sides and then drop the railroad tie against another railroad tie so it would snap. Then it left a hunk of wood in the middle that had to be bashed off - I don't have much for tools, so used a hammer and shovel. I also cleared most of the wood chips out of the greenhouse - I had a 4 foot bed, then 4 foot path then 4 foot bed originally and put a greenhouse over the 4 foot bed and the 4 foot path, so had to pull the chips off the 4 foot path so I can turn it into a flower bed also (flower being the operative word as I am not supposed to grow vegetables). I dug up some sod to make it more square and for the railroad ties to sit in more evenly, and then sat down and listened to Ben talk about veterinary associate contracts for a while. Emily has just started to crawl so we teased her with toys to get her to wander around the little blanket. A classmate was jogging by and stopped to say hi to us and visit with Emily and then I took the clothes off the line, hung up some more clothes and started some supper. I left the yard in a mess and headed to bed early as Emily was tired and I was was too.
Today I hung up another load of laundry on the line before emptying the shed to get at something (can't even remember what, but it was a mess in there as one night we had a tornado warning and we'd thrown everything from the deck and yard into there so we wouldn't lose anything). I dug up another small bed on the south of the trailer and hauled some wood chips BACK to the front to see if I could make something decorative to join the front bed and the side bed so I wouldn't have to mow a little strip of grass. It doesn't look right and Ben suggested we dig up the sod and make it an L shaped bed, so I guess I'll haul the wood chips back to the shed tomorrow as I'm trying to get some mulch in front of the shed to stop it from being so muddy when it rains. I started to clean under the deck and realized the previous owner had stashed quite a bit of wood and odds and ends under there that could be scavenged and hauled to the dump, so got side tracked cleaning and getting excited over treasures in the form of wood to finish framing in the trailer hitch and scraps to finish bracing my greenhouse with. I hauled them hither and yon and then put the bicycles behind the shed and out of sight. Ben was home by now and made himself some deviled eggs for a snack while he studied on the swing in the back. He started some sun tea which he spilled all over the kitchen :). So we started another batch which is still on the porch and should be brought in as it was looking pretty strong. It is quite an American thing to have "sun tea" as we Canadians don't drink unsweetened tea cold unless it is "iced tea". The rest of the time our tea is served hot with cream and sugar.
Anyway, I put Emily out on a blanket to play with a container and a hose sprayer and she immediately tried to crawl to it, kneeled on a hard tree root and cried. But she got over it quickly and played on her blanket for what seemed like an eternity while I continued to putter around, moving things here and there, and moving them back and sweeping the porch, hauling deck chairs out, marinating chicken wings and . . . then I went in the house and realized there was a reason Tia had been panting and barking to be let out. I thought it was just her and Becky's way of driving me crazy when they want to go outside, but she wasn't feeling well and I came inside to find a trail of diarrhea all down the hall - such fun to clean up. I put it off and put it off (thankful that we have hardwood floors), and took Tia outside to finish her business. Eventually I cleaned it up, washed the bathroom rugs and then washed the bathroom and hall floor. I hung up another load of laundry, very thankful that it wasn't winter and I had nice spring breezes to dry my laundry out. (between sun tea and sick dogs I had to do another load today) Emily was squawking so I put her in her jolly jumper with a cut up boiled egg which she thoroughly enjoyed. I sat down to enjoy some late afternoon rays with Ben while he studied radiology and I looked through a farm catalogue. Eventually the chicken wings were burning on the grill and Ben rescued them while I finished hauling stuff to the dumpster. Emily sat in her little chair on the deck and ate bits of BBQed wings (she is a meat eater!) We ate supper on the deck and then took the dogs to the country for a walk in the dusk. I am usually the brisk walker and Ben the meanderer, but tonight I felt tired and was looking forward to Ben's meandering. Much to my surprise, he stepped onto the road and took off at a very fast pace and I thought I dare not complain as I usually want to speed things up. His pace soon left me huffing and he turned and said very sweetly, "How's the pace? Fast enough?" I sheepishly admittedly I was a little tired and it was plenty fast. We walked that speed till about 1/8th mile from the van and agreed to meander the rest of the way. Emily fell fast asleep and is still rather tired as she didn't have her normal 2 naps. She is very cute though, sitting in my lap resting her head back and trying to pull my nose off while I type. The dogs are both spent as Ben got up early and took them for a lovely long walk and then they got another nice walk this evening.
Emily's latest is learning how to crawl. She can move forward very well if she is on carpet, although she hasn't learned how to get places really fast. But she looks awfully cute while doing it. She has learned some new sounds and likes to make them by the hours. She loves to eat the bugs and dirt and play in the sun.
I am busy trying to get everything ready to plant this spring. Flower beds, ornamental corn, greenhouse, and then a list a mile long of things we want to do this summer in preparation for selling the trailer next spring. (see how very positive we are about Ben's passing his boards!!!)
Tia is not enjoying this lovely heat and spring weather and wanders around panting.
Sorry I forgot to answer your question Lynn - Becky is a dog I had on the farm in SK. Because she is high energy and loves to live on the farm, we left her there, thinking we would just bring her down when Ben graduates and we move back to ND. Tia wasn't doing so well this spring and we though she would perk up with some companionship, plus we knew Becky would have to move into town soon when Mom and Dad sell the farm, so figured now was a good time to bring her. She is a sweet dog, but definitely likes the farm a lot more than living inside in a trailer. She drives us crazy all day long whining and scratching at the door to be let outside, but I have learned to either put her in the bedroom or tie her on the porch while I work so she and I both get a break from each other. She is some type of terrier/collie/coyote cross with longer hair and when we take her for walks in the country it looks like we have a coyote following us everywhere. We have to watch that she doesn't get shot at because of how she looks - a farmer told us he almost shot her thinking it was a coyote in the field!
Mocha and Frank have settled down again (it always takes at least a week for them to get back to normal after a trip away from home) and are their usual moochy selves. They both come to watch Little House on the Prairie before bed and then Mocha either curles up on my head or sleeps in the hall while Frank kneads us to death in his constant search for the best place to sleep. He usually ends up on my head or behind my head in Ben's face. We don't have the heart to kick him out as he is purring loudly and every pore of his bodies is screaming, "I love this!" so we just pet him and put up with it. Interestingly enough as we drove out to the country this evening, we saw a gal sitting on her trailer steps playing with a cat that looks identical to our runaway cat. While we were not missing him (not the nicest cat in the world) and had had enough of his mad dashes for freedom every time we opened a door or window, it is nice to see he has been taken care of and somebody is enjoying him.
Ben is vigilant as ever with his studies and is preparing for a radiology exam and a food animal take home exam. He is busily entertaining Emily and I with the guitar tonight.
I am wiped out - oh wait. I did come up with a way of making a little extra money. Yesterday while working outside I counted a good 50 people that jogged up and down the path behind our house. I figure I can charge .25c per person and make over $12 per day if approximately that many go jogging every day. Then I could set up a lemonade stand or some other forms of refreshment, maybe a little tea shop with nice crustless cucumber sandwhiches and scones and make a tidy profit while working in the yard. It's a nice shaded area and a few deck chairs and an overhead canvas tent or two would spruce the place up quite a bit.
I'd better get going as I need to get the clothes off the line before it storms tonight.
Signing off
Heather, Ben, Emily, Tia, Becky, Frank, and Mocha (phew, no more animals!)

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