Thursday, April 29, 2010

Meet Marmaduke!


Okay, so his name is Clyde and he’s an 8 month old yellow lab. He looks more like a Great Dane to me, but hey, he is what he is. Bill had a co-worker ask if we’d watch his 8 month old lab puppy while he worked out of town a couple days. This wasn’t exactly what we were expecting!!


Unfortunately, no one at our house appreciated Clyde as much as he would have like them to. Mad gave him a lot of ‘advise’ to stay away, but he didn’t read it and couldn’t keep his nose out of her ‘private area’. Thus, Mad would hide behind us when they were together.


Seeker was fine with him as long as there was a ball involved. Seeker chased the ball, Mamaduke, um, I mean Clyde would run after him, all was good. He was so much larger than Seeker we just didn’t even try to have them loose together in the house.


Same with Kruz, too much size and age difference. Kruz did end up in the kitchen with him at one time, all we heard was the scream. No blood and the scream was Clyde. Apparently Kruz was a little more forceful with his warning than Mad was.

He didn’t understand that close doors couldn’t be pushed through with his head. He ran into numerous doors, I don’t think he even noticed they were shut. I hope the other puppies in the litter got the brains! G


He would literally hang over the baby gate in the kitchen, which is 36” tall. All our dogs would disappear into the back bedroom. Apparently it’s true, “outta sight, outta mind”!


Last night, Clyde went home. The house was amazingly quite! He’s a nice dog, but HUGE! He’d really benefit from some obedience classes.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Busy Weekend!!!

Holy Cow, is it Wednesday already!! Adam and I just got back from the Palo horse trial ride for Julie's birthday (which is Friday). We moved up the ride due to the weather forecast which is promising rain on that day. We had a great time with Julie and Nellie. Maybe I should say, Julie and Tammy had a great time! Nellie and Adam had a couple 'eye rolling' you GOTTA be kidding moments which involved multiple water crosses and a couple questionable wooden bridges! J & T are ready to go again!

Wow, it’s just amazing what you can get done in a weekend if you put your mind to it, and your back, arms, legs, well, you get the picture! Nice weather and a ton of stuff to get done! What a great weekend to be HOME!


I started off planting some annual seeds in little containers, over 100 Zinnia, 72 Coleus, and a few vegetables (for me!!). I used the handy dandy potting bench that Bill made for me!! I spent a couple dollars on hardware and the rest we already had! Actually, the table top is porcelain from my dad’s garage. My sister spotted it and thought it would make a great potting bench. She was RIGHT! Isn’t it cute?? The two totes below have 'soil' in them. When I remove the pots on top, there's a nice work area, even a shelf!



I also potted a few Dahlias and I got an Elephant ear. I’ve always wanted one, so what the heck. You should have seen the cashier at Menard’s trying to figure out what the heck it was. It was probably because I’d put it in a ‘hardware’ plastic bag and he was a guy! Bill got a laugh out of his reaction. These beauties are planted in my portable green house, it's made up of totes with windows as lids. This way I can bring them inside at night.



I moved onto potting some of my perennials for the up coming Benton County Master Gardener Plant Sale!! It’s on Wednesday, May 19th at the Benton County Fair Grounds. All monies will be used in funding a field trip to a nursery or garden, some day? I still have a few things left to pot up, but so far I have 17 Russian Sage, 18 ground cover sedum, 8 Silvia, 5 hosta (That I have to find the name for), and a few other things…I think?


I repainted all the agility contact pieces. I’m so really for classes to start! Hopefully we don’t loose all this nice weather next week!


I also measured the East and South walls of the enclosed porch. The contractors claimed the ‘ran out’ of barn wood and needed to use the T1 for those last two sides. Well, I measured the walls and the barn wood and guess what, they LIED!! I think they were just ‘tired’ of the project.


BEFORE



So, Bill and I teamed up and removed the T1 siding and put up the barn wood without any major injuries. We did suffer some sawdust in the eyes and a couple splinters, but a little whinnying seemed to cure it.


After


I think that was all on Saturday? I started at 5 AM and got into the house around 7 PM. I was bushed!


Sunday wasn’t much improved from a work stand point. I continued to re-pot perennials,

and then made up a ‘red neck green house’.


Pretty smart huh! We’ll see if it really worked or not when the seeds some up, or DON’T! I made it from some heavy metal cylinder “tree protectors” that the former people left us! He had cattle and I can only assume these were to protect seedlings from the cattle. Since the only thing we had out here 10 years ago were Silver Maples, I’m not sure why he bothered protecting THEM!! Anyway, they are very heavy and do a great job holding the plastic down. I have to be careful as it gets almost TOO hot under there. We’re closing it shut at night and then Bill opens it up a bit in the mornings.


We made our doggie smore video. That was fun!


Bill mowed the lawn, I sprayed round up. I planted some perennials out in the North East corner of the north agility yard. Julie, Aaron and Bodee dropped by. They spent some time playing with the dogs and laughing at Tom the Turkey. He thought the reflection in Aaron’s truck bumper was another turkey. It was pretty funny.



video


I think we called it a night. It was a very productive weekend, but now I’m exhausted! Luckily, or not, I think it’s suppose to RAIN this weekend! Hum, maybe some painting inside is in order?


Friday, April 16, 2010

Stink Bug Invasion

The Asian Beetle! (Looks similar to a lady bug) Or as we call them, the Stink Bug! If you’ve ever been bitten by one and tried to take your revenge by smashing it you your fingers, you’ll know EXACTLY what I’m talking about. Apparently, someone in the agricultural field thought it would be a great idea to import them from Asian in order to eat all the aphids that caused damage to most foliage crops. That ‘relocation’ apparently failed, but no one thought to tell the beetle that!

About a month ago, we had a HUGE population invading our house. I almost blogged about the bugs then, but we got busy with a lot of traveling, and it never happened. This week however, they’ve returned with a vengeance! So, here you go. The ‘low down’ on the Asian Beetle Saga!

Now, the research I’ve done states they don’t breed indoors like some other pests. You could sure fool me, as I’ve been sucking up literally hundreds at a time. Both Border Collies go totally nuts when I get the vacuum hose out. I’m sure it has NOTHING to do with the fact that I tease them with it by sucking their ‘butts’ if they turn their backs on me. I tried that with Mad, the PWD last night, she just rolled her eyes and left the room.
Our vacuum hose now as an orangish film coating it. Rather nasty!!

On health tidbit to make note of here. Do NOT rub your eyes after you’ve smashed an Asian Beetle. Apparently you could have an allergic reaction. I know I think of rubbing my eye after I touch them all the time. So, a word of warning!

I was brushing my teeth last night and felt something small and hard come loose. I thought I’d lost a filling! I bit down on it just a bit and it smashed. Yep, STINK BUG!! Luckily my CREST toothpaste could overpower the taste of the nasty little bug!

How do you prevent them from invading your house? Seal cracks and openings. Hum, our house was built in 1890, I’m thinking that is next to impossible! Larger holes can be filled with cement, hey, it’s what they have on this web site!

Bill found a Glad product that’s for flies. Remember those round cylinders that pull out to a long strip? If you ever hang them in the barns or outside you’re always getting caught in them? Well, they now make some rectangles that adhere to your windows. They work pretty darn well if it’s warm enough for the sticky stuff to be sticky. Once they are full you just peel them back off. We used a 4 pack, but they filled so fast they didn’t even make a dent in our bug population, so we’re back to vacuuming.

If you have any other solutions I’d love to hear them!!!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Mr. Coffee Woes!

Note the time on the coffee machine. I've been up since 5 and STILL waiting for a cup of Coffee!! Anyone else feel my PAIN!! Luckily I have some instant packets for just such emergencies, but it's not the same!

My timer on my Mr. Coffee is always set at 5 am. It has NEVER failed me. Now, there have been times when it didn't pull all the water from the water basin. I learned quickly how to solve that problem. We have hard water, thus the salt water deposits build up inside the percolating. tube. The solution? Make a vinegar and water solution and put that into the reservoir and let it cycle through the coffee maker a few times. Works like a charm! I love this coffee pot, it's stainless steel! I've always somehow break the glass ones, so this one is very valuable to me! It goes to work with me EVERYDAY!!!

Today's problem is a little different. The percolator just isn't percolating! Just a dribble. So, I'm "douching" the machine, but it's not looking promising. Normally I use a 5 parts water to 1 part vinegar solution. I'm not up to about 50/50 and I'm on the 4th cycle. It just stopped again, time to go see how it's doing.

If you have any other suggestions, let me know!

Monday, April 5, 2010

E-Book Anyone?



Do you like to read? I have a few friends who have purchased either the Kindle ($259-$489) via Amazon, or the Nook ($259) by Barnes and Noble. They all LOVE them! You can download up to 1500 books all on a little device the size of a small thin paperback. It’s pretty amazing! You can change the font size and one of the best features; you NEVER lose your page! WOW!

Now Apple just introduced the IPAD. Talk about KNOCK YOUR SOCKS OFF! You can surf the web, e-mail, watch a movie, play games, listen to tunes or read a book, magazine, etc! It can synchronize with your I Phone or I Touch, like I have either of those! You’re going to pay for it however. Anywhere from $499-$829 depending on how much speed and storage you want. You’ll also have a possible Internet service of $15-$30 a month.

It can make your head spin! Can you imagine a day when we don’t have paper? Look at all the trees we’d save! Look at all those librarians in the unemployment lines! Not to mention, putting the printing press out of business. Would we even need the US Postal Service anymore?

I wonder if there will come a time when you can get e-books free through the library. That’s the only way I can see myself going to one of these devices. I really like the idea and the size. What I don’t like is the need to pay for books. The big claim is $9.99 for best sellers! That’s all well and good, but if I have to pay $10 a week (that’s what I read on average) for a book and the library is free, I can’t justify an E-reader.

The other down side, that I see is the finger prints. I hate finger prints on my computer screen. I can’t see how people can stand those “I Touch” type devices. I’d be wiping it off constantly!

For now, I’ll stick with my handy paper backs and continue to kill a tree. Since I get my books from the library vs. buying them, I’m not killing as many trees as I could be. We recently subscribed a magazine ‘on line’, so that should be interesting. I don’t know about everyone else, but you only have so many books and magazines you can justify keeping!

In the mean time….HAPPY READING!