Tuesday, June 14, 2011

In No Particular Order


I have a bad habit on this blog. I start a story, and don't always finish it. So, in no particular order, here are second and third chapters to some of the things we've written about previously.

Recently, we had electricians certify the safety of our 1920s knob-and-tube wiring. They inspected, did a bit of work, and gave us the legal go-ahead to insulate our attic. I'm delighted by this, and more delighted that both the electrical work and the insulation installation were No Big Deal. We paid someone to pump in recycled (and flame-treated) paper pulp, and I didn't have to crawl on my belly in a roasting-hot attic, dumping out bales of pulp. I didn't have to haul bales of pulp up a ladder and through a tiny hatchway. I wrote a check, and some nice men came with their pulp-spewing pumper truck. It was over in a matter of hours, and there was no residual mess. Our spring has been protracted and freakishly cold, but now that summer has finally arrived, we're observing a notable difference in the temperature of our little house.

There's still one surviving fledgling jay. I hear it, skrawking to its parents from a number of different locations. It seems to have mastered flying, which will hopefully protect it from the cats. I won't lie. I spent several mornings, camped out in the back yard with the garden hose. Yeah, that was me, at 5:30am, shooting water at the cats if they got too close to the birds. I'll ever be a Morning Person, but I am a lunatic.

Our caterpillar plantation is humming right along. No butterflies have emerged, yet. The bees are also doing well.

My worries about my emotional state were pretty much resolved when I got a long-lingering sinus infection diagnosed and treated. In addition to having no energy, coming home from work and going straight to bed, I had been experiencing a freaky smell issue. I was constantly smelling a sort of ammonia/urea odor, that nobody else could detect. I really thought I had the world's most polite friends, and that I somehow smelled like a homeless person. But sniff as I might, I could never identify the source of this unpleasant smell. I mentioned this to my doctors, who tried to not act like I was insane, and sent me off for brain scans. The good news is that once we treated this chronic sinus infection, the weird smells went away. I must have been smelling the insides of my infected sinuses. The bad news is that I had been experiencing the smell for over three years. It took a freaking brain scan to find something that was cured by a week of antibiotics. My sinuses are still a mess, but then, I'm allergic to everything.

Our lemon tree is finally winding down. I never did manage to make a properly textured batch of marmalade. Turns out, you can't scale up marmalade production. Or at least, I can't. What I made tastes fantastic, but runs right off the toast. I have delicious knuckles, most every morning.

The plum tree is just starting to ripen. We've had about a half a dozen plums, and we're about to be drowning in fruit. Our arborist seems to have been overbooked this spring, and we never did our scheduled pruning. At this point, I think we should just let all the fruit ripen and then figure out where to go next.

We're also going to have an insane persimmon harvest, based on the amount of fruit on the tree. We're in the middle of what's known as "June drop" where the tree aborts the fruit it cannot support. Little bitty persimmons are falling on the back yard, but even if we lose half the crop, we're going to have more than we know what to do with.

We've resumed scraping boards. This project came to a halt when I was dragging around with the sinus infection. I scrape, Robb primes, and slowly we're chipping away at the heap in the driveway. We still haven't figured out who is going to mix up the paint. We've found the perfect color, but it isn't available as an exterior paint. (And no, I'm not going to custom mix our house paint.)

What am I forgetting? What did I talk about earlier, that you may have thought, "I wonder how that turned out?"


Anne Bonny said...

Just wondering how Mr. Smog is feeling? I've become addicted to reading your blog and always wonder when I don't see a regular posting! So how is Mr. Eartufts?

Christine said...

Wait... 3 YEARS?!?! Oh my gosh, I'm so glad that's taken care of! And I can't believe that through your illness you've managed to do so much. And blog about it, for that matter!

ASL Girl said...

I also am interested in how Smog, Cardigan and Sleeves are doing. That is a BEAUTIFUL picture of Smog relaxing on your rug! He's grown into such a handsome boy!!!!

Kristen said...

That belly demands a scratching. I do hope you gave into belly-rub temptation after you snapped the photo.

Congratulations to Robb on his 4,000 miles. Here's to the next 40,000.

I tend to smell blood, salt, or burnt tires when my sinuses are infected. Wee is a new one. I'm sorry you've been living with that. You've always just smelled like paint to me.

How are your tomatoes this year? Mine seem quite stunted--it's been alternately cold and rainy and hot and dry here since the first of April and my poor plants seem absolutely baffled.

Odd question, but since you've gotten over your face-clog, have you noticed any improvement in your vision? I've been having a hard time seeing lately and can't help but think the pressure in my ears has something to do with it. My GP is, naturally, useless.

Nataline said...

A third vote for news about Smog! And how IS Robb these days?? It sounds like he is fully recovered from the second back-breaking accident.


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