Friday, May 30, 2008

Groomed Mikey, Now I can't get Emma back into room.

I let Little "T", the little six-toed kitten I rescued, out of his big dog carrier onto the screen porch for the morning. I thought of some names for him:

Teetonka = Talks Too Much, in Sioux.

Takoda = Friend of All, Native American.

Toe-Toe, even though he doesn't come from KS.

Trey-Trey = three-three, for his six toes.

But it won't be up to me to name him now.

This is Mikey, white poodle, after his bath, and before grooming. He is always dark gray when he first gets here, as he loves to roll in the dirt. His "Dad" had a stroke and people can't understand him, so I try to help him out with Mikey. I didn't know how I was going to groom Mikey with Emma in that big cage in the grooming room. Mikey has two cats, so I knew that he wouldn't bother her, but I didn't want her to get scared and upset. So I measured the cage, 42" long x 28" wide x 32" high, and found out that if I dragged it into the middle room, which is really a hallway, I could still open that bathroom door, which is right of the picture, to bathe Mikey. It meant that I couldn't get into the grooming room through the glass door behind her, but I could lead Mikey around the other way.

I left the dutch doors open, while I groomed him, so that Emma could see that I had done this for her own good. She watched very intently from the top of the kitty condo. The two kittens are in a cage that stays there on the left, and they are used to being locked up when I am grooming. That all went well, except that I can't drag the big cage back onto the cream linoleum pad that is behind Mikey in the picture, as the bottom rails keep on getting caught on the pad. I keep it under that cage in case water gets spilled, I don't want rust marks on my Old Rose linoleum. Now it is stuck in the middle of the dutch doors, until I can get someone to help me. I don't think that there is a button that I can hang around my neck and say " I got my cage stuck, and I can't get (it) up"

I spent some time gathering things together for tomorrow. I will be driving to Houston, well Cypress, tomorrow to my granddaughter, Kim's House Warming Party. There are things that I had forgotten to take to my daughter's when I visited her, and then gifts for the new house. It will be great to see my daughter, SIL, grandson and granddaughter, but unfortunately my three great grandsons will not be there. And of course, my other granddaughter, Susan, Kim's sister, can only be there in spirit since she got killed by a DDD (dam drunk driver) in Feb. 2006. I know that we will all be thinking of her, and missing her.

As I have to go through the next town, I also have to get errands done there as I go through, so I will be leaving earlier. So I have to get everything in the truck. I will have a cold bag with me to carry a side dish/dessert for the party, that I will buy when I am through with my errands and on the road to Houston. I am a stickler about keeping food at the right temperatures or I would bring something homemade. Bacteria doubles every ten minutes when it is not at the right temperature.

I went to an RV rally last year, and someone had not kept, or reheated their pot luck contribution to the right temperature, and I got very sick for a couple of days. If a dish is not kept at 40 degrees, or reheated to an internal temperature of 165 degrees, it is suspect. Chicken should be heated even more thoroughly, even to 180 degrees, as it carries salmonella. I stick a food thermometer in everything I cook or reheat, before I will eat it or serve it. But then I had to go through Food Management for the USAF, (when I ran their Rod and Gun Club Restaurant), Conroe High School Cafeteria, and when I had my Mini-Golf, as we served food.

Ray came from next door to help me move the cage, and saved the day.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Emma. Little "P" will be a "T". Blinds and Battery

This is Emma, the cat boarder. She was named that, as she has a big "M" on her forehead. Golly, getting her to hold still is something else. All the rest of the pictures I took turned into a blurr. I found out last night that she will be staying with me for an extra four days. The first time I boarded her she was worried that the grooming room would be her permanent home, but she knows that her Mama will be back for her this time.

Little "P" the little six-toed kitten will be going to a different SPCA foster mom, Terry, on Monday, so he will be a "T" then. ( Toesie, maybe) Trying to keep all the cats apart is something else, so I will be glad when he leaves. Then I can bleach clean the screen porch, and the box out there, and let my cats back out there in the mornings, if I don't do that before then. But if I do, Little "T" cannot go out there again, and he would have to stay locked up in the dog carrier, and that wouldn't be very nice for him. Mine do get to run around the grooming room and the house for some "house time", so they can do without the screen porch for a few days more. Except Emma, she has to stay in the grooming room, but she gets the run of that several times a day, when I lock the other two up. Like I said, keeping them all apart is keeping me busy.

Ray and I put the last few finishing touches on the bathroom in the Class C. We had to take the mirror down to spray the lighthouse pictures, and I had to take more photos for the ad that is coming out. Then we were going to mount the table in it's storing place, but decided on some different type of fasteners which I will have to buy, when I can get into town.

I had an inquiry about my vintage 1968 HiLo Travel Trailer, so we got one of the new cellular blinds installed in the back window. Now, I can add that picture to the album of the HiLo, to send out to prospective buyers. The AC isn't installed in it yet, and even though we had a fan in there, it was just too hot to do anymore. The other blind for the front window, and the drapes are all stored in my attic, and we didn't want to be up there, either. I'll post pictures when we get the other one installed. They match the like-new avocado/beige upholstery perfectly. Exactly the same color as the Dometic fridge, which is still in great shape and working after all these years.

After having it on the charger, we took the negative side of the Class B front battery off, and touched it to the post to see if it had a phantom draw. It doesn't, and it won't hold a charge. So I have that old battery in the truck to get a new one next time I am in town. With gas the way it is, I am consolidating trips like everyone else. Cheapest I saw gas when I was in the next town was $3.73. It is always higher in our town.

Another hot and humid day.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Got Sidetracked Weeding Hedge. Cat fight !

Another nice day....for a while., then it got hot and humid again. I let the 6-toed kitten on the screen porch for a while, even though he is in a BIG dog carrier, I thought it would be change for him.

I was waiting for Mindi's husband to bring the two poodles to be groomed. I just puttered around doing odd jobs, and he never showed up. But Ray did, his pressure washing job down the road got cancelled for today. Good thing I didn't go get another poodle down the street that is waiting to be groomed. I don't mind doing Mindi's dogs while Emma, the cat boarder, is here, as they know each other, but I don't know what would happen if I brought a strange poodle in here, even though I would have locked her up in the big cage. I'll wait to do Mikey until after Emma has gone home. Emma still hisses at Minkie and Boots, and I know there would be fur flying if they met without bars between them. I just let them take turns being loose in the room.

Ray and I installed the new faucet on the plant sink on the porch. We found out why we couldn't stop the old one from leaking, the place where the seat screws in, was cracked.

Yesterday when I was at Big Lots, I bought an electric hedge trimmer. I know, you RV fulltimers don't have to worry about mowing and hedge trimming, but I do. Jay used to bring his up here to do it, but I needed my own. Why not, I have every other tool imaginable ! Ray trimmed the 100' long Privet hedge along my fence. I planted it to keep the north wind off the back yard and the back of the house. In England, Privet doesn't lose it leaves in the winter, but this does, so it isn't much of a wind break. Maybe when it gets more established it won't shed, I hope.

When May was working here it was one of her jobs to keep it, and the long Aloe Vera bed in that trough in front of it, weeded and raked. It gets pine needles stuck in the Aloe, and under the hedge. She hasn't been here for a while so it was a mess. Jay, Ray and I had been working on more important things, like RVs. It is all watered by an underground soaker hose which I manually turn on when needed, and it shuts off by itself, or I would forget about it. The other light green foliage in the background is across the street. There are cattle grazing there, and sometimes deer.

The new hedge trimmer worked great, I didn't know if a cheapie would do the job, but it did. Ray and I armed ourselves with gloves, snippers, and pliers to try to pull the vine's roots out, so they wouldn't grow back. Some had nasty stickers on them. We got carried away and worked on it for several hours, and it still isn't all done. There was even some poison ivy, oak or sumac climbing up one of the pine trees. Ray attacked that with Round-Up, he isn't allergic to Poison Ivy, so I let him do it. It climbed up another tree a couple of years ago, and I sprayed the leaves with Round-Up, and it has never come back.

The other picture is of two cats fighting through the door to the grooming room. Needless to say, I couldn't catch the real action shot. "Boots" was in the kitchen, and the boarder, "Emma" was in the grooming room. That thing on the door is a shade that I turned upside down and inside out, so that I can pull it up from the bottom and hook it on hooks on the door at various levels. I put that there so that dogs in the grooming room can't see Bobcat walking by, and start barking, but I can still check on them. The cats have pulled the lace trim loose, so I have to stick it back on again.

A weeding day.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Six-toed Kitten Pictures. Rained a Gully-Whomper.

Bobcat was sulking as she couldn't go out on her screen porch this morning. So she sat and looked at the traffic on the other road from a window at the back of the house. The little kitten I found zipped up in a bag at the dumpsters yesterday, is on Bobcat's porch. It will come to me now, so I discovered that it is one of the rare 6-toed cats, and that he is a boy. As it is easier for my SPCA boss to remember which fostermom has which animal, his name has to start with a P (for Penny). So far all I have come up with is Peter, Pierre, Piper, and Perry !! Or Pied-a-Terre (French for temporary lodging or Foot on the Ground). He is prettier than his pictures.

Ray and I both had to make trips into the next town first thing, so we didn't get started until late. We got a big dog carrier out that I haven't used for years, and cleaned it up so that I could bring it in the house for the kitten to get out of the heat. I found a place where I could put the carrier, and set it up with blankies, litter box, food, and water. First, I had to put Revolution on him, so that he won't bring in fleas. Now, Little "P" is very happy to be inside, and quit squaulling. Once he has been through Intake and checked by a vet, he can be with Minkie and Boots in the grooming room. He should get adopted fast.

We had another battle with the porch sink faucet. There must be something terribly wrong with it's innards. We tried different seats and 0-rings, but is still leaks from it's base, and it still leaks water under the sink. So I just bought a new faucet, and we will get that installed soon.

I started sewing on the drape that closes off the bathroom from the living room in the Class B, and there came up a terrible wind with pine needles and twigs blowing all over the place. Rain was not in the forecast until tomorrow. I had only just got the kitten inside in time, as there came a terrible downpour that blew rain into the screen porch. No wonder it has been so humid.

Not a very productive day.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Remember Our Troops. Found Kitten in a Bag.

I hope that you are all enjoying Memorial Day. We all need to give thanks to those who kept this country free. Just think what our troops are going through right now, too.

It started out nice, and the cats enjoyed being on the porch, but I brought them in midday again. Emma, the cat who I will be boarding for a week, arrived. I put a Kitty condo, her box, dishes and toys in the big German Shepherd cage. I left the door open so that she could wander around in the grooming room. I can't mix up people's animals, so I had to lock her up when I brought my kittens in from the heat. She doesn't like them, and hisses at them. She will get over it. Right now it is her turn to be loose in there again, and my kittens are locked up in a cage in the middle room. If she were boarded at a kennel she would be locked up in a cage all the time.

Ray and I just did a few 'catch-up' jobs and that took until after lunchtime. As the Class B still won't start without a battery charger, and Jim the mechanic hasn't had time to look at it, we ran heavy duty cords out to it to use the AC. It was humid, even this morning. We got Super Velcro on the shower curtain, and the sides of the shower. Or rather I did, as Ray had trouble getting in there. It must be for bathing kids !! Boy, I thought the shower was small in my B+, but it seems huge now. I hadn't really made up my mind which shower curtain to put in there, but decided on an almond one with burgundy shells on it. The burgundy Dryon shower curtain that I had bought for it, made it too dark in the shower.

Ray sprayed several coats of polyurathane on the lighthouse pictures, and put one more coat of poly on the table for the B. We still have to attach the pole holders and I have to go south of the next town to buy two poles the correct length. The table was missing when the B got here, but I found a picture of this model so I know what it is supposed to look like.

Jay used to vacuum for me sometimes, as he knows it hurts my back, and I had been asking him to see why my Panasonic vacuum cleaner didn't have as much suction as it used to. He never looked at it, he just stuck it in the garage. Ray found out that Jay had let the vacuum suck up a cat toy and it was blocking the tube. It sucks up the tube all the time, so that you don't have to attach the hose each time you want to use it. Ray had to take the cleaner apart and push the blockage out with a broom stick. Great, now I don't have to lug my big upright shop commercial Hoover into the house all the time. The workshop has big rubber backed mats like the stores have, all over it, and that commercial Hoover is great on them.

After we quit for the day, I took my trash to the dumpsters. In the trash I saw this athletic bag move and wondered what made it do that. I used a pole in case it was a snake, and there was this little gray fluffy kitten zipped up in there. How could anyone do that ? It let me pet it, and seemed quite tame, as long as it was in the bag. I brought it home, of course, and put it on the screen porch, so now my cats can't go out there. I can't bring it in the grooming room with my kittens and Emma in there. I put food out for it, and it ate readily, but everytime I open the patio door it runs and hides, so I can't even get a picture of it, or pet it again. I am sorry that it has to be in the heat out there, but that is better than being zipped up in a bag and left to die. I will put up another cage somewhere and get it in the AC, but not in the grooming room with the other cats. If I can ever catch it !!

Another rescue day.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Last Drape. Lighthouse Pictures. Grooming

I awakened early as usual, took care of the cats and dogs needs. It was a lovely morning, but humid.

Ray arrived early, and we attached the gliders and installed the last side door drape, over the kitchen sink. We re-installed the newly painted stove top, and then pasted pictures of the lighthouses. One on each side of the mirror on the back wall in the bathroom. Those are both of St. Augustine lighthouse, and the other three in the kitchen, over the stove are the other three lighthouses that are on the drapes. We are going to spray them with clear polyurathane to protect them. It took some time, as we tried out different ways of doing it. The clear contact paper that I bought the other day, was a different brand from what I have had before, and it didn't behave right, and we wasted a lot of photo paper. It was too hot to do anymore. We still have to install the table in it's storage place on the back of the kitchen cabinet, just inside the side door.

I brought the cats in from the porch, as it is another scorcher today. I still had Mindi's dogs to groom, and I don't like to groom in the afternoon. I had some late lunch, and laid down to get my back rested from going up and down the steps into the Class B all morning. Of course, wouldn't you know it, the phone rang and woke me up after 5 minutes. I hate that, as I can never get back to sleep, so I dragged myself into the grooming room. I got Punkie and Shuggy cut down, and their face, feet and tails roughed in. Punkie is ready for her bath. There is still about an hour of finish scissor work on each one after they are bathed and dried.

I won't be finishing Shuggy today, her hair is longer and she is going to need a lot more brushing before she can be bathed. If you bathe a poodle when it has tangles they turn into clumpy matts. Poodles have to be cut down or brushed out completely before bathing. Then they have to be brush-dried ( brushing with a slicker brush while drying) so that they hair all stands out straight for scissoring. Poodles have hair that has to be cut like people, it just grows and grows, other dogs have fur that sheds. Shuggy will be back with the last of Mindi's poodles, Caesar, another day. I never have one here on it's own, as they get upset when away from the "pack". I need to schedule my grooming for the days that Ray is working elsewhere.

Even that little Chihuahua that was here for a few days, shed all over the place, and when I washed his blankies I had a thick layer of hair caught up in the dryer filter. If I were to have another dog, which I doubt, I would want one that doesn't shed !!

I had better go bathe Punkie, and get her finished today.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

This and That Day. Top Drapes lined.

It started out a nice day, but I had to bring the kittens inside by midday, it was too hot on the screen porch. It was humid, too, like it wanted to rain, but never did.

Muffie arrived to be groomed at 8.10 am, but I didn't get to start on her right way. I was already bathed, dressed, cat's boxes done, but I found a water leak under the plant sink on the porch. My late Johnnie and I made that cabinet to that old porcelain sink that has two built-on draining boards, one each side of the sink, and I didn't want it to rot. This is the sink that drains underground out to my little baby Red Maple Tree out front, and keeps it watered.

First Ray had to get the sliding screen door back on it's tracks, as it does get used a lot. Then Ray and I tackled the leak. We found out that it was coming from the hot side of the faucet, which is not even hooked up to water and is capped off. As it wasn't the faucet seat, it must have been something to do with the cap which is very difficult to get at. As the hot side isn't used out there on the screen porch, we stopped up the little channel in the faucet, so that water can't get to that side. Fortunately that faucet has a cut-off, so we will leave the water off until it has all set up, and put the seat and faucet handle back together tomorrow.

I went to start the Class B to move it so that Ray could mow, and the darned rig wouldn't start. This had never happened as the solar panel keeps the batteries charged. We checked the water in the front battery, and put a charger on it. I never did get it started before Ray mowed all three lots, so he had to mow around it. I got Muffie groomed while Ray mowed and then he had to go somewhere else and help some neighbors. The B started later, but it was too late to move it then. I hope I don't have to buy another battery.

Upon Ray's return, we went up into my attic and turned my water heater down a bit. It had been turned up this winter, but now it was a little too hot on the mixed setting, to bathe dogs and I knew two more of Mindi's poodles were arriving this afternoon. I might not get them done today, but we had planned on them spending the night. Then we set up the big German Shephard cage in the grooming room. I need somewhere a bit bigger to keep the cats while the dogs are here. It is too hot in the afternoons on the porch. The dogs arrived at 1.00pm.

As for the Class B, I had managed to get the last door drape sewn, and I took the top window curtains down and lined them with burgundy. See the before and after pictures, above. Ray and I were sweltering out there, so I started the genny and turned the AC on. We got the two top curtains up, and left the rest for tomorrow morning when it is cooler.

I just fed the dogs and let them have their " house time" in here with me, while the kittens have free range in the grooming room for a couple of hours.

A real "This and That" day.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Trying to find parts for Bissell. Lighthouses.

It has been a nice day, though it got hot in the afternoon. I brought the cats in from the screen porch before I went into town this morning.

I had a list, we all need to consolidate our trips now that operating a vehicle has gone out of sight. My truck was ready at Jim, the mechanics here down my street. I had to go to town to get the cash to pay him. He would have taken a check, but I had to go into town to put money in that account anyway. I was all prepared to go in the un-air conditioned Puddle Jumper, but he told me to take the truck.

I tried to make a route, to go to all the places on one side of the street, and come back and do the ones on the other side. So I started out at the Dollar General for paper goods, then to the bank. Crossed the road to the hardware store to try to find a fitting that would fit the Bissell carpet cleaner. The threads are non standard, so I guess I will have to go to Graingers when I am in the next town.

Then to the doctor's office to ask the nurse about a prescription they wrote for Fosamax, which I know makes me feel bad. Needless to say, I didn't get to see her, as I would have had to wait too long. On to Krogers, now that they have the $4 generic prescriptions and got some new generic for high cholesterol. I hope it doesn't make my muscles hurt, statin drugs usually do. I got a few other things there that I needed, including some clear Contact paper. Came back to our subdivision, and went straight to Jim's to pay him for fixing the truck air conditioner, that was just a loose connection on the resistor. But he had to put new front brake pads on the front brakes, and have the rotors turned. The brakes feel a lot better.

After lunch I finished sewing the one last door drape. Now they all have the little lighthouse inserts in them. I took one of the top window drapes down and got the burgundy lining sewn in it. It looks a lot better.

Then I did a search and found pictures of all the lighthouses that are on the drapes. They are pictures of real lighthouses, and I even found out where these lighthouses are.

So this was my lighthouse day.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Unexpected attic stairs fix. Side Door Drapes

It was drizzling rain when I got up. I had wanted to sleep in, as I was in the chat room till late. But I woke up at 6.00 am as usual. Turned the coffee pot on, and let Bobcat out on the screen porch to watch the rain. That is her routine, she wants the porch all to herself first thing in the morning, for about an hour, and then she wants to come back in and have her little bit of Special Diet canned food for breakfast. While she is out there I drink my coffee and check my mail, that is my routine. Then I put the kittens out there with their two little dishes of canned breakfast, and their dry cat food. Then I am dressed by 7.45 am.

When I had taken Jay home with his lumber yesterday, he had laid it out on saw horses so that Ray could sand and poly it today. I heard through the scuttlebutt grapevine that he had been drinking last night, so I knew that the lumber would be wet. Can't sand or poly wet lumber ! I told Ray that I didn't think that he would be working at Jay's today. Ray won't go around Jay if he has been drinking, anyway. Ray went down there, on schedule this morning, and got conned into taking Jay into the next town to return some gun nails and stuff. That means Jay drank all his money, and he will be hocking his tools. What a way to live !!

I just sauntered around doing some extra jobs, like deep cleaning and disinfecting cat boxes, sweeping the porch floor, and watering the plants, when Ray arrived. If I had known that he was going to be here, I would have sewn the one last drape for the Class B door windows. We went up my attic stairs, (not the new stairs we installed in the guest house a little while back,) to look at my Bissell carpet and upholstery cleaning machine. It needs a part that broke the last time it was being used. We figured out how to fix that, and next time I am in town I will pick up the parts. We use that old Bissel a lot.

The attic stairs felt weird and loose, so we investigated and found out that some big blind rivits had pulled through the wood that cover the stairs in the up position. Ray brought in the big step ladder, and we figured out what to do to it. We ratted through my carriage bolt bin and found some the right length, with lock washers and nuts to fit. I held the stairs up while Ray drilled holes the diameter of the carriage bolts just below where the blind rivets had pulled through, and we bolted the new carriage bolts in place. Now it is solid and better than new.

Then Ray lightly sanded and sprayed the final coat of epoxy appliance paint on the stove cover for the Class B. He had to do it just inside the workshop door as it might start raining again, or get pine needles on it, like it did yesterday. We put my stove back together now that the paint is dry. Then we attacked door drapes again, and attached carriers and snaps to more of them. Here is a picture of one more door done. One half a door to go. Hopefully we will get that done tomorrow when we re-install the stove cover.

I brought the kittens back into the grooming room as it was getting hot on the porch by early afternoon.

And we called it a day.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Cleaned Stove, and installed more Drapes.

Here is the clean stove, and the drapes on the back doors.

As three of Mindi's poodles had spent the night, I took them out first thing this morning, and my knees felt weak. I just knew that I couldn't face another day of grooming 2-1/2 more today, plus all the other things that I have to do. So I called Mindi's husband and asked him not to bring the other two today, and that I would do them tomorrow. Jay and Ray would be gone, and I wouldn't be trying to get stuff done in the workshop and the grooming room at the same time, like yesterday. If I had my "druthers", I would have gone back to bed as soon as the poodles were picked up, which is very, very rare for me. I gave the cats their last dose of the three day de-worming at 6.10 am. and put them out on the screen porch. They could not have their breakfast for two hours after their medicine, so I try to do it before I have even had my coffee.

I picked up Jay and a bunch of lumber that he wanted to rip on my table saw. He is making his own inside trim for his windows and doors. He and Ray are supposed to get it sanded, and polyurathaned tomorrow. Ray wasn't going to be here until after 1.00pm, as he had another job to do today. I took out the rest of the stove and it's cover, out of the Class B, and sprayed it down with Super Clean, used to be Castrol Super Clean. We use that for cleaning just about everything around here. It comes in a gallon at WalMart Auto Dept., ($7) and you can use it straight for cleaning engines, or diluted for cleaning mini-blinds, vinyl seats, counter tops or what ever. That got the grease off it, but there were some places that the grease was so baked on, that I had to use oven cleaner. I took the whole thing apart, and one of the nuts and bolts that hold a burner on the bottom, had to be cut off with a sawzall. Jay and I put more carriers and snaps on the drapes that I had made, and we got all but two, hung. It was time for me to take Jay and his lumber home. It was starting to get hot, so I brought the cats back in. Yesterday we had a record heat for that day, 20th May, 95 deg.

Ray arrived and he started cleaning up the parts of the stove that I had left soaking with oven cleaner with some fine steel wool. I still can't grip anything too tightly with my left hand. We discovered that we were going to be able to save the top without having to paint it with high heat gloss paint. I can't believe it came that clean. But the little chrome part where the knobs go, had pitted and we could not get it to look good, so Ray painted that with Rustoleum Hammered black paint, which would cover up the pitted look, and would match the black grates. The stove cover looked bad, too, so he painted that with some almond appliance epoxy paint, to match the counter top. It will take one final coat tomorrow. The underneath part of the stove was a mess. It had been used carelessly and they had let all the food spills accumulate under there forever. But it finally came clean, and Ray and I got it all back together. I can't understand someone having a gas stove and letting all that spilled over food just stay underneath. The gas stove in my house is an RV stove, older than the one in the B, and if I happen to let something boil over, I take the top off and clean it up right away, so it looks new under there. While we were at it, we painted the top of my gas stove with white High Heat Gloss Paint. It had already been painted with high heat paint but it wasn't gloss, so I had really ordered the gloss for it. So I am not using it tonight, I am using my little electric pressure cooker instead.

So I never did get to lie down today. I just kept on going. Mindi called, and as she will be off tomorrow, she wants to spend the day with her "babies", so I won't be grooming them tomorrow.

Maybe it will be a rest day.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Getting Hotter. Catching Up with Grooming

It started out like the other mornings, and the cats were quite content to be on the screen porch. But by about 1.30pm I had to bring them in as it was getting hot, especially as the sun is on the porch in the afternoon and evening. That is why there is a reed blind on one side, to keep it cooler in there. That is the blind that the cats are having such a great time taking apart reed by reed. They wouldn't have fooled with it, except I cut some off the bottom, and that started it. I will be glad when my little Red Maple is big enough to give shade on that south side of the house. Though probably not in my life time !! It is just above the bird feeder now.

Mindi's husband dropped off three of her poodles to be groomed. I said I would do 2-1/2 today, and 2-1/2 tomorrow. We will trade out 2 poodles tomorrow morning, so these three will spend the night. I have been their "Nanny" for many years while Mindi is flying (she is a stewardess), so they are used to being here, and are like my furbaby grandkids. She calls me at just about every other landing she makes, and likes to know how they are. If she doesn't call me, I leave a message on her voice mail each night with a report. One of them is very old, and we keep close watch on her.

I don't mix up different people's animals, so when I brought the kittens in this afternoon, I let them loose in the middle room. There is just a dutch door in between it and the grooming room, and I thought that they would have enough sense not to go over it. But they had to jump into the grooming room while I was grooming. Old Sheba (5 lb) and her son Jakey (6 lb) didn't pay too much attention to them, but fiesty Punkie (13 lb) who I was grooming, got all aquiver and seemed like she wanted to chase them. I held her near Boots, and they sniffed noses then I locked the kittens up in the big cage in the middle room. Seems like Boots is getting over her fear of dogs, I didn't think that she would come over that dutch door with dogs in there.

I picked up Jay this morning, as he is behaving right now, and gets bored if he stays at home. I went in the truck as he wanted to work on his bicycle here. He started looking at the fuses on the truck to see if that was the problem with the fan motor, they were all good, even the big ones under the hood. I had joined a Dodge Dakota forum when I got the truck, did a search there, and found out some info about resistors and stuff. Jay also washed the bed of the truck, it has a spayed in bed liner that looks a bit worn out and ratty, we will have to find out how to fix that. Jim the mechanic came by, and said he would look at the fan motor problem. So Ray and I took it down there. Jay fixed his bike, and he went home to tend to his sick mother and mow their yard.
Ray did his usual magic with a caulking gun loaded with cedar colored caulk, and fixed a little space that I didn't like under the toaster oven shelf, in the B. Then he stained and polyed the underside of the table Jay and I made yesterday. As it will be seen every time the second door is opened on the side of the B, it needs to look nice. He even primed and painted the pole holder that will be mounted on the bottom of the table, a shimmery pearly almond to match the table top. I had ascertained that the propane tank wasn't on, and I started to take the 2-burner stove out. It is grubby and needs attention, but Ray had to leave.

In between keeping Jay and Ray busy with different projects, I was trying to groom the dogs. I finally had them done by about 5.15 pm. I fed everybody, and the poodles are in here with me while the kittens roam the grooming room. I try not to leave them locked up in the cage.

A hot busy day.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Made the Table for the B. Hand Doctor Again

The day started out the same as the last few days, but by the time I had to leave to go to my doctor appointment, I had to bring the kittens in from the screen porch and put them in the air conditioned grooming room.

I picked Jay up this morning, as he knew that I was going to the next town this afternoon. He wanted to go with me, as he needed to pick up more floor tile. Ray is not comfortable with carpentry work, so Jay and I made this table for the Class B. It had to be the right length as it stores behind the sink on the wall there inside the side door. We did it on the table saw to get nice straight cuts, then rounded the corners with a jigsaw, using the outline of a coffee can as a template. Then contact cemented the Formica on it.

We left early enough so that we could go to the three thrift shops that are open on Mondays. Jay bought some jeans and an ice slushy maker, and I just got a burgundy liquid soap pumper, 25 cents, and a new box of cone coffee filters, 50 cents. Then to the doctor, who still wants to take the bone fragments out. They X-rayed my thumb three times, and said that there was no infection in the broken bone.

As I presumed that gas would go higher for Memorial Day weekend, I finally filled the truck up with gas, at $3.61 per gallon, so that I can find out how many MPG it gets. Though when I checked the speedometer against the mile markers on the freeway, I think it is running a tad slow, so I might not get a very accurate calculation when I fill it up next time. That is assuming that I can buy another tank of gas without getting a reverse mortgage !! Goodness knows what the cost of gas will be by then. When we left the gas station the fan on the air conditioning wouldn't come on. If it is not one thing, it is two others !! Maybe the truck went into shock from having a fillup, or saw the cost, and blew a fuse.

A hot day.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Showed the Class B, and sold a TV finally.

Another day spring day with the windows open and no air conditioning. Just didn't need it.

I did a few liitle jobs to the Class B, but I didn't have anyone here to help me attach any more carriers to the drapes. I had some local folks coming to look at it, and I explained that it would be finished very soon. I had listed it on Craigslist to test the water, so to speak.

I had listed the Merry Miler on Craigslist to see what responses I would get, before fooling with the hassle of eBay. It sold to some folks in Houston very quickly. Sometimes things sell right away and sometimes it takes a while on Craigslist. It isn't so much the hassle with eBay, it is that the winners often have no intentions of buying. I sold the Coachmen Class C twice on eBay, but the high bidders never even came to look at it, or pay the depost. In the end I traded it, and some cash to me, for the Little Van through Craigslist. I still have the Little Van, but as it doesn't have insurance on it, I don't drive it. I can't use that fancy Little Van with all the clean plush velour, and immaculate carpet, and beautiful oak for hauling stuff. I am thinking about building a little "tailgate kitchen" in the back, sort of like the "teardrop" trailers have. It already has a couch/bed and ice chest in it. That might make it sell. Just adding something different makes it more appealing when there is a lot of competition.

Back to the Class B. They liked it, but apparently she would have to "haul several suitcases on top to hold all her clothes". I don't think that she is an RVer. How many clothes do you need to carry to go camping ? You are traveling, who sees them twice ? It has quite a large closet, and a couple of big cupboards with shelves, and there is a lot of room for clothes that have been sucked flat in space bags, under the bed, etc. If she needs to haul a mess of costumes for a Renaissance or somewhere, she doesn't need to be looking at a B. The listing clearly stated that it sleeps 2, and then I find out that there is a 6-year old, too. They did discuss making a bunk bed across from side to side for him. They came in a big pick up truck, towing a utility trailer, so I wonder why they are not looking at Airstream trailers. I think that is more her style. He liked it though. But, I don't expect to hear from them again.

Speaking of big trucks, a man came from Houston to buy this LCD TV/DVD with surround sound speakers on this black glass stand that I have had on Craigslist for ages. I had just re-newed the ad, and this time it sold. I hooked up the TV, and showed him that it worked. He got it all in the four door cab of his truck.

I am so glad to get that out of my way today.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Installing Drapes. Adoption Day Again.

It started out a bit chilly, and I wore a little cotton cardigan for a while.

Ray and Shay were supposed to go do a pressure washing job, drove all the way there, and the folks weren't home, so they came back and Ray and I got some more work done on the Class B drapes.

Getting the carriers attached to the drapes straight takes two pairs of hands, but we have found an easier way to do it, where they slide better on the tracks. The rest should go a lot quicker.

This is one of the back doors. This is the two drapes slid all the way to the side, for better visability for the driver. But they cover the whole window when closed, and there is a snap or super Velcro to hold them closed. They come from the factory with a drape on each side of each window, but I like to be able to see out of my rear view mirror, and try to get the rear door drapes out of the way. It doesn't look as cute, but tell that to the judge when you back into something, if you want cute ! I think my little lighthouses are cute enough.

Then it was time to don my SPCA foster mom clothes. We usually wear those uniform tunics like the vet and doctor's office help wear, but ours have critters on them. I have picked up several at thrift shops. Today I wore the one with giraffes on it, and off we went to Adoption Day, in the next town. The kittens are quite used to this as they have been going for quite a while now, so they travel well.

I picked up a few things that I can't get in our town. I had been making a list all week, knowing that I would be there today. Before all this gas thing started I would sometimes make 3-4 trips a week there, but now I try to wait until Adoption Day on the first and third Saturday.

When I went to pick up the kittens, I was told that some folks had put in an application for "Minkie". So we will know next week if they are an approved "forever" home for her. They started out wanting "Boots", but they have a dog and Boots is very leary of dogs. Minkie just gets along with everybody and everything, purring all the time.

A busy day.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Re-installed the Couch/Bed. Drapes and Photos.

A lovely spring day, so I had the windows open, and no AC until later when the humidity rolled in.

Ray and I got the couch/bed back in place. It was fun trying to figure out how it went back together, as we hadn't taken it out of there. The back flips all the way over to the front of the couch and makes a bed. So there are two weirdly shaped metal arms on each side of the back which has to be the right way up and the right way around for it all to fit together. I think Ray and I took the back outside and turned it around, or turned it over, three times before it all worked out right, and could be bolted back in.

I spent a lot more time on making the drapes, and working on the ad for selling this Class B. As we get each part completed, I have been trying to take pictures of this B that can be sent in an album to prospective buyers. So I was sorting out which pictures should be for that album. Most of the pictures I take, are just snapshots to record what we did. I just store a jillion of them in AOL's Picture Storage, and then pick some out to store in a separate album.

Just a productive day.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Power Cord Chute, and More Drapes

A great day with the windows open, and no AC.
The cats have enjoyed being outside on the screen porch all day.

Ray had a little bit of time this morning, so we were going to put the fold-over couch/bed back in the Class B. It had been taken out so that we could access different things under it. We had already added little doors to the front. Jay had made a kind of chute to stop the main power cord, which comes in the rig on the left of the picture, from getting tangled in the plumbing lines. That is the water tank at the top. He had also made that box over the back of the converter, right, to protect all those wires. But he hadn't vented it, so we cut a slot in it and covered it with aluminum screen wire. It is also open at each end. We found a 110 v. junction box that Jay had not put a cover on, so we remedied that. The white plastic chute didn't go back under the power cord entry, so we made that longer, so that the cord will go in the right place when it is pushed in the cable hatch. People start tugging on power cords, and if they have got tangled up in plumbing and things, it can cause a lot of grief. The cord had already loosed the connections to the generator auto switch-over box. I like cords to have a designated space where they are not going to do any damage. I don't know why Coachmen didn't think of that. $$$ I expect.

I spent more time making the little door drapes, and like most things, the more I do, the faster they go.

Now it is a humid time of day.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Lots of little door drapes. Surprise Thunderstorm

The day started out great, and not too hot, so as Ray had an hour before he had to pick up Shay, we decided to attack a stack of building material that had been moved when we skirted the guest house. It was supposed to have been bought by Jay, who never did pick it up. Now it needed to be moved back in place. We sorted out some other things that needed to go to the dumpsters, while we have them. They are starting house to house garbage pick up next month.
We loaded those items that I no longer needed into the back of the truck. It had been getting darker and darker, and of course, as soon as we got down there to the dumpsters it poured, and we got soaking wet unloading the truck. The wipers couldn't cope on the way back, and I had to drive slower than the 20 MPH speed limit.

When I got home I let the kittens in the house, as I think that they were a little scared out there on the screen porch. So they played with the reels of thread on the sewing machine. The torrential rain didn't last long, and then the sun came out. That's TX for you, just enough rain to make the grass grow.

I spent several hours making the 8 little door drapes, burgundy around the sides, with the light house fabric in the middle. Getting it all planned out and pinned in place, took quite a while, so I still have several to make. The burgundy lining in the top window drapes isn't done yet, either. I have to get this done, as the Class B is supposed to start on eBay soon. At least my thumb is better enough for me to do it now.

A rainy sewing day.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Some More Drapes Done in Class B

It was a warm day again today, with high humidity, too.

The kittens were glad to sleep in the grooming room without being locked up in a big cage, now that the dog is gone. This morning they scampered out to the screen porch for their breakfast, and even when it was warm they still didn't want to come in until their dinnertime. They have been pulling a reed blind apart, reed by reed, and that is so much fun. I let them do it, as it was old, and needed replacing anyway, and it gives them something to do.

Ray and I got a late start as he had to go somewhere, so I used that time to do more sewing on the door drapes. This is the first time since I hurt my thumb that I was able to push the fabric through the machine, comfortably.

First off we were going to put the battery in the truck, but we decided to prime and paint the battery tray first. So we had to wait to put the battery in. We got the snappers screwed into the front of the van and attached to the windshield drape. Then unsnapped it and put it away in the top cabinet in the entertainment center. Gee, that big cabinet is handy.
We got the little glider carriers attached to the top of the door drapes, and this is a picture of the "dry run", as they are not finished yet. Three more doors to go. I have a few more of the little carriers coming, as I found some on eBay for $10. All the RV catalogs had them in bulk at $137, and I didn't need that many.

Jay called this afternoon and wanted me to take him to Lowes in the next town to get lumber to make a pantry, and more floor tile for his house. He is getting bored staying at home. He put the new battery in the truck, and off we went. He bought the lumber, and the last 48 squares they had of his pattern of tile, and I delivered it, and him, to his house. He wants to come back to work, but he had been drinking again. That means that he won't be able to think straight for days because once he starts drinking he cannot stop. Some folks just have that switch in their head, and it only takes an ounce of alcohol to turn it on. What a waste of a life !

That was it for today.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Hand Doctor. Handed over Chico.

Lovely morning again, and gratefully, not hot, in fact it was quite chilly at 7.30 when I left. I was going to the next town in the Puddle Jumper, with no AC, and I had Chico with me. I couldn't drive the air conditioned truck until I got back with the new battery.

I was supposed to meet the Dog Rescue lady first, but she was delayed, so I had to leave Chico in the car in a carrier, with all the windows down a bit, while I went into the clinic. The hand doctor's nurse had me squeeze some items that measured the strength in each hand. Then she touched the tips of all my fingers with a little thing that had either one or two points on it. I had to keep my eyes closed, and say if I could feel one or two points touching. Then the doctor came in and looked at my thumb. He had seen the X-Rays, I think that they have a way of faxing them, too, now. That must have put a lot of couriers out of a job!! The hand doctor said that he might have to operate on it, cut it open and take the bone fragments out. I wasn't too crazy about that idea, so as it doesn't seem to have any sign of infection, he is going to look at it again in a week.

I met the Rescue lady, and Chico was on his best behavior, so that went well.

I should have worn my pedometer to day. I went to every thrift shop in that town, looking for a wooden paper towel holder, and a shower curtain for the Class B. I had seen some on eBay with lighthouses on them, so I was really looking for one like that. The burgundy one I bought for it looks so dark in that little shower. I came home with four shower curtains, (one is for my little bathroom) , and no wooden towel holder. I have one that I was going to install on one of the ledges, but it is the kind of wood composite that you can't stain, and it is too light colored.

Then I walked from one end to the other and all around Home Depot, all around Lowes, all around Big Lots, and all around Wal-Mart looking for different things. Good thing that I was wearing comfy shoes. I finally found some snaps that I could use in Wal-Mart Craft and Sewing Dept, as they have a hole where you can put a screw the length of your choosing. The ones at Lowes came with the screw attached, but they weren't long enough. I got the Dakota a new battery, and wouldn't you know it, the cheaper ones don't fit, or don't have enough amps, and I had to get their top of the line battery. Back on the freeway, and then stopped in our little town at our local hardware store to get the screws for the snappers. I finally got home at 3.45 pm, and had lunch.

I got my exercise today.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day. Snappers and Snapping.

The weather is lovely, and Jay and I installed the boxes along the ledges on each side of the Class B. We also installed two mirrors. One over the sink in the kitchen, round, like a port hole, and one in the bathroom.

The original burgundy drapes, and tiebacks, are up over the couch/bed. They are difficult to open and close, and I think it needs something to keep the sun out, during the day. I put cream day cellular blinds, the kind that you can see through, that I got at a thrift shop, in my RV. It sure does cut down on the glare. I am going to hunting in my attic, and see if I have any more.

Ray and I also found out that we are going to have more hardware to make this all come together. We measured the burgundy velour drape that goes around the inside of the windshield, and I don't have enough snappers. The shower curtain railing is really a pain as it is so small, so I will have to put a larger one in to give one some elbow room.

Chico was in one of his 'snapping turtle' moods, and made my hand bleed when I tried to take him for a walk. Talk about biting the hand that feeds you. He is so loving one minute, and the next minute he is terribly ferocious. He would NOT go to bed in the grooming room, which he has wanted to do ever since he got here. I wasn't going to try to get him out from under my bed, so that is where he slept. I hoped he wouldn't pee or poopy on my carpet, as he refused to go outside, too. He has done that a time or two since he has been here. I didn't scold him, as he must have been through a lot of trauma since his "Mom" died. I just cleaned it up. Thank goodness a lady from the Chihuahua Rescue will get him tomorrow, as they know what to do with these 'turncoat' dogs. I heard that Chihuahuas are like this sometimes. I had a Long Coat Chihuahua, and he was sweet all the time, so I am not used to this.
So it was a 'snappers for the drapes', and a 'snapping' day.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Navajo Sandpainting. Medicine Side Effects.

Yesterday I spent some time looking for the nearest Chihuahua Rescue, and contacting them about Chico. They have not replied yet.

More time was spent looking up info on a sandpainting that I have. I was asked to post pictures, so here they are. I found out a lot about the history of them, too. The Native American Indians have very many interesting cultures and beliefs. They believe that: "The natural colored sand rainbow bar on the bottom, is a path to where the great spirit is". Not many sandpaintings have that rainbow bar on the bottom.

More later today.

I didn't go to WalMart to get the new battery for the truck, I have to go right by there on Monday anyway, when I go to the hand doctor. My thumb isn't "sticking out like a sore thumb" anymore, but I still don't use it much as it is difficult to grab hold of anything with this big bandage on it. Awkward as I can't get it wet.
I have been feeling like I couldn't breathe right this afternoon, I just feel breathless. When I did a search about these antibiotics I am taking, that is one of the side effects. Another side effect is that it making me sleepy. I hate taking medicines, they are just a bunch of chemicals, and I know that can't be good, especially as they all have side effects.
I leashed Chico and I was going to walk him down to the mailboxes, which are a way down the road, by the swimming pool. But I turned back halfway as I was getting out of breath, which is not like me.
I cleaned and re-stuffed the filter in one of the air cleaners, the one by this computer, as I hoped that would help. I don't buy new $40 filters for it. I have some of that sticky backed filter material, some of the black charcoal filter stuff and then I cut up good quality pleated furnace filters. I pack it in layers in the cardboard box from the original filter, about once a month. It seemed to help my breathing, but I am going to feed all these critters, including me, and try to get an early night.

A lazy day.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Vehicle Problems. De-winterized the house.

It has been a lot hotter today. I hope it isn't going to be like this for the next 6-7 months. Though it usually is.

I had to go to the doctor's office for a blood test this morning, and the truck wouldn't start, so I went in the Puddle Jumper. When I got back, I put a battery charger on it, and that didn't help. Jim came and tested it, and the battery is no good. So poor little old Puddle Jumper will have to go all the way to Wal-Mart to get a new battery tomorrow.

Ray was concerned about his car, it was suddenly losing about a quart of oil a day. He took it down to Jim's, (the mechanic), and found out it was the oil sending unit leaking. So Puddle Jumper, Ray and I went into town to get one. That solved that. I have seen PCV valves do that, too.

Ray and I de-winterized the house. I am on top of a hill and there are just fields on the north side. There is a terrible biting cold wind on the north side in the winter, especially when those Canadians send down a "Blue Norther" . My water lines, and water heater are in the attic, so we cover the soffit vents on the north side in the winter, with board insulation. The attic can still breathe from the south side, and the tall ceiling in the workshop. We also cover the inside of the turbos, and other vents in the roof in the winter. Even though the water pipes in the attic are insulated, it not only stops them from freezing, but helps keep the hot water warm in the pipes. Then the long trough of aloe vera, on the north side, has fabric screwed to the trough so that it can be flipped over to protect the aloe during a freeze, see picture. That was all unscrewed, the fabric washed, and put up. The soffit covers were all put up, too.

Ray applied the last coat of polyurathane on the parts for the Class B, so maybe they can be installed tomorrow. He also did his usual great job of caulking around the new tub. We tried out the faucets, and hand held sprayer, and it is working. We tried out the Dryon shower curtain, and he even got in the tub to see how the curtain would work, as it is such a little shower track. It doesn't give enough room, the new tub is deeper and wider, and I am going to have to sew it a bit differently. I have been staying away from the sewing machine, as it is difficult to feed material through the machine with a bad left thumb, and it hurts to touch things with it.

Tomorrow will have to be a sewing day.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Stain,Poly. Made table. Medical $ Machine !

Another nice day with the screen doors closed and no AC needed until the evening, when it gets humid.

I had taken some Aleve last night, and it did help the throbbing in my thumb, and it didn't hurt as much this morning as it had yesterday.

Ray spent quite a bit of time staining and polyuranthing the little storage boxes that go along the ledge, and that little sliding drawer, for the Class B. It was so nice to be able to work on the outside tables again.
I made a little table, and didn't have any trouble drilling the holes, and countersinking holes to put the braces on the back of it. No drill bits went through any body parts today. Though I had to use the chop saw to cut boards, as I can't really hold anything with my left thumb. I bet you right-handed folk didn't realize how much you use your left thumb to hold things still for your right hand !

I knew that I needed a tetanus shot, so I went to the doctor this afternoon. They soaked my thumb in some Betadine, and said that it needed to be X-rayed. Golly, all this fuss over two little holes. So it was X-rayed from three different angles. I got my shot, and then the doctor told me that the drill bit had broken the bone in the top of my thumb, so now the medical dollar machine has started to grind. I have to see a hand specialist, (more co-pay than regular doctor) on Monday. That, and take 2 anti-biotics for 10 days.

Three dogs to be groomed, but no bathing dogs for a few days.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Little Boxes.Truck.Green Bags.Beware of Tools !

The before and after pictures of the Dakota. Now it has a bumper, with a Class III receiver hitch. At least with the bumper I have a step to climb into the back of it, if I have to.

A lovely spring type day, the kittens are happily sunning them selves on the porch. I went to get Jay, but I already knew that he had got himself polluted last night, and that there was no way I was going to work with him today. But his mother had trash that needed to be hauled off, so I did that. She is still in a lot of pain from her liver cancer surgery.
I needed to get to town to the Post Office, as I had sold my Topsy Turvys on eBay, and the buyer wanted them to get to his mother for Mother's Day. While I was out, I had to buy some more bananas, as I had tried storing some in those new "green bags", and they went all mushy and had a chemical taste to them.

Ray stained and poly-ed the little Napa Valley boxes that I bought to go along the ledges in the Class B. It is gradually coming together, and looking good.
I was drilling out some rivits, and the drill slipped and the drill bit went through my left thumb. As I am on blood thinners for my heart, it took a while to get it to stop bleeding. But I finally got all the rivits drilled out. I don't think I had better do any sewing on drapes today, as my thumb is still leaking a little.

A bloody day !

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Sewed Drapes. An Apache Road Cover We Made.

It is nice weather, so I have had the windows and patio door open, but screen door closed, all day. Chico likes to play with the kittens through the screen. But it seems to get humid around dark, and then I have to close everything up, and turn on the AC.

Ray and Jay were installing Jay's new bathroom vanity and getting the plumbing ready for the sink. That gave me time to measure and start sewing the curtains for the four van door windows, the side and the back. I had bought some burgundy valances at a thrift shop, and with a little bit of altering they will be the right length for the door windows. As the last drapes that were on those windows rotted, I will install solar film to protect these.

Looking back on some of the RVs we have repaired, here is a 77 Apache Hard Side Pop-Up Trailer. These are very famous and sought after, and have a couple of clubs devoted to them.
It had lost it's ABS road cover, (roof), and they are not something that you can just go out and buy. First we had to install the new ceiling inside, as it is accessed and clipped in from the top. I bought the almond fiberglass sheets from Lowe's, ($35 ea.) to match the original. With that done, we covered the whole roof with foil covered insulation board. The roof we made out of a sheet of almond trailer roofing that I got in Houston. A bunch of self-tapping screws, and rivits, and it was like new again. That roof won't crack and break !

Today was a drapery day.