Monday, June 29, 2009

This, That and the Other Thing

The storm that blew through the area - was it Thursday? - took down half of a tree in my front yard. It pretty much split in half. It's too bad, because it was a nice tree. Fortunately, the part that's left standing, still looks OK - not too weirdly shaped or anything. Now that I'm thinking of it, I should take a couple of pictures of the part that fell down before I get around to cutting it up...

Saturday was a beautiful day - I got *so* much done around the house - it was great.

Sunday's rain messed up my plans for the day.

I made an appointment to have my truck looked at again tomorrow and hopefully pass inspection. Except the Check Engine light went on again on my way home from work today. I can't wait to see how much it's going to cost me now :(

Going back to Saturday - it was the first full day the chickens spent outside. Before that, they have only been out for a few hours at a time - from when I got home from until it got dark. When they came in, they totally zonked. I thought for sure that after spending a *whole* day outside they wouldn't be able to wait to come in sleep.


I got them inside, and The Ladies were not happy at all. After a couple of hours of them totally not settling down, back outside they went. They haven't been back inside since. At night I have to make sure that they are in the coop on their perch, but once there, they have been settling in nicely. I still think they are still too little, and it's not warm enough to go outside permanently, but I guess they would know better than me what makes them happy.

I'm kind of bummed tho', because I don't have anything to show on my webcam now. I really liked having it. I am going to see if I can find an affordable wireless webcam somewhere. Hopefully I can and then set up something so The Ladies can be watched outside. I'm crossing my fingers!

And speaking of The Ladies, I finally have names for them. After the tenth person asked me if I named them (which I hadn't) I got together with my sister and she helped figure out names that I'm happy with. I still probably won't use them - they will still be The Ladies to me - but at least they will have names :)

The New Hampshires: Cocoa and Cinnamon
The Cochins: Banana and Nugget
The Red Stars: Pumpkin and Granola

I think that they all fit. Especially Banana.

Harper's Island - The finale is in two weeks. I am sooooo enjoying this show. I'm not a big fan of slasher shows, but there have been so many twists and turns, I can put up with the gore. Every time I thought I had something figured out, I was wrong. I love that. Shows and movies that are easy to figure out just aren't fun. The cliffhangers at the end of each episode have been great, too. I think the writers did a fantastic job with the show - it's going to be a shame to see it come to an end. I wish there were more quality shows like this on TV.

Monday, June 22, 2009


So today I replaced the gas line and fuel filter on my lawn mower. The gas line had deteriorated and was leaking gas, so it had to be done. I thought for sure that it was going to take forever, it would be really hard to take apart and put back together and just be an all-around pain in the butt. It turned out to be one of the easiest repairs that I have ever done. And the fuel filter must have been really dirty (I haven't opened up the old one yet to look inside), because I was amazed at how smooth the engine ran after putting in the new one. For $5.86, I made my lawnmower very happy.

I think some of my chickens are beginning to enter adolescence... their voices are starting to change :) Since I've gotten them, that's all they do is Peep. Peep peep peep peep peep peep peep. Now a couple of them aren't peeping. They aren't quite clucking, but they aren't peeping either. It's kind of funny.

Don't you find it quite annoying when people think you can work miracles? You tell them that you can't, but they still insist that you can. And then when said miracle doesn't happen, you look like the bad guy? Ugh.

And a couple of things that I have mixed feelings on:

Snow Park Niagara

Because we only have cold, snowy weather eight months out of the year? Heaven forbid the other four months feel left out... But you know what? It looks like fun :) I think that when I have out of town friends visit, I might go.

I thought it was interesting tho', that you have to pay even if you only want to watch. Kind of sucky for grandparents just want to watch the grandkids or something like that...

And then there is Body Worlds

My family wants to go see this when it come to Buffalo Museum of Science in July. At first I thought it would be a lot of fun - until I saw the price of admission. And read reviews.

In short, $22 is more than I want to spend ($27 if I decide I want the audio tour) at a very crowded exhibit for two or more hours.

The cost is my complaint. The crowds were a common complaint in the reviews of the exhibit across the country. Most people said that they let too many people in at a time, and it was hard to enjoy the displays. I could probably put up with the crowds if it weren't so expensive to get in.

I guess there is a lot of controversy over the exhibit, too - religious and moral. I wonder if there will be any protests on opening day.

Most people said the exhibit was good. I've been to the Mutter Museum in Philadelphia - which I very much enjoyed. I think that this is similar/along the same lines . I *know* the Mutter Museum wasn't that expensive to get in!

I don't know yet if I'm going to go. Probably not, but you never know.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Not Complaining

I've noticed that I've been kind of whiny in my last few postings, so I am not going to complain in this entry.

I am not going to mention that I've spent over $800 on my truck and it still hasn't passed inspection. I am not going to ask why my phone books are always delivered on rainy days. And I'm not going to grumble over the fact that it's supposed to rain all day Saturday and I have so many things outside that I need/want to do.

Instead, I'm going to talk about other stuff. Happier stuff.

I took a half day off from work Friday, which is very unlike me - but so needed. It was great to get home and have time to make a bunch of phone calls I've been needing to make. It was nice to call while the businesses were still open and be able to call in the privacy of my own house. It was also great to be able to take care of business visits I haven't been able to do that really needed to be done. It was such a great feeling to come home and have a ton of time to work on projects. I got a lot of stuff done and it feels great. I should take half days more often - they are good for the soul :)

Tops had baby potatoes on sale this week, so I bought a bag. I wanted to try and make baby salt potatoes. I *love* baby salt potatoes, but never tried making them. It was easier than I thought it would be - the 'recipe' I found said to boil the potatoes in water and a pound of salt. A pound of salt is a*lot* of salt in my opinion, so I only used about a cup. It was kind of interesting how the salt got all over the stove as the potatoes boiled - there was a salt powder all over. I have to report that a cup of salt is also too much - they turned out *really* salty. I saved some for tomorrow, so I'll see if some of the saltiness goes away after a day.

Today I used an orbital sander for the first time. That thing got five out of five stars. I've always used a sheet palm sander, which was OK. I learned today that orbital sanders are a million times better. The orbital sander was a lot faster, did a nicer job and the one I have sucks up all the dust into a little compartment, so the mess is very minimal. Yay for orbital sanders!

I ran into the son of a friend of mine - wow has Josh grown up! It's amazing what a difference two years make.

Sunday is going to be my first Father's Day without my Dad. We are going to be passing the Father's Day torch to my brother-in-law as he is now the dad in the family. We are going to have a cookout and celebrate him being a dad of *two* this year. And I know my Dad will be there in spirit :)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


The good news is that my back is way better than it was Saturday - thank goodness! Sunday I was able to move again and yesterday and today I've been improving. I'm still sore, but hopefully by the end of the week I'll be back to normal - normal for me anyway. I am so glad that I didn't hurt myself more seriously. Thank you to the Guardian Angel looking out for me!

Today I let the chickens outside again for a little while while I did some maintenance on the coop. As soon as I get everything in tip-top shape, the Ladies will be outside on nice days and I'll be bringing them back in only at night. Once they have all their adult feathers they will be outside for good. They zonked out as soon as they got back in again :)

Something is eating my peas. I suspect it's one of the bunnies that inhabit the yard. It's so weird - they never bothered my garden before and now they decide that they want to eat my lettuce and peas. I guess I'll have to start putting fences up. What a pain :(

I hate my work hours. I've said it before and I'll say it again - how do people who work Monday through Friday 9 - 5 (or 9 - 5:30 in my case) manage to get anything done? I have so many things to do that I am so far behind on, I have no idea how I am ever going to catch up. For every project I work on, it seems like three more come up.

On a happier note, Tractor Supply called and the battery for my tractor is in. Now let's hope that a new battery is all my tractor needs. Cross your fingers.

Saturday, June 13, 2009


That's what this weekend is - Wasted.

Next weekend has a lot going on, so this weekend I pretty much had every minute planned to make up for what wouldn't get done next weekend. I had a good plan, until this morning - when I pulled my back.

At this point, I still can't move without being in excruciating agony. I can't sit, I can't stand, I can't walk, I can't lay down. This is very reminiscent of when I initially ruptured a disk a couple of years ago. I hope I didn't do the same thing again. The suckiness of this is unbelievable. I really hope that I am at least mobile by Monday. Words can't express how mad I am that absolutely *nothing* on my very long To Do list is going to get done this weekend. $%#@ !&%** #@!! @%&#

As a distraction, let's talk about my chickens :)

They went outside for the first time this week for about an hour. I took them out to the coop where it was fenced in and I would be able to collect them again. I think that they really liked having so much more room to wander around and explore. When they got back to their brooder, they all fell asleep right away - it was pretty funny. I think tho', the next time they go out I will have a much harder time catching them to go back in.

I gave them their first bug this week, too. They had no idea what it was or what to do with it. That was one of the advantages I had when Mama Chicken was raising her babies - the babies saw what she ate and copied her. My chicks don't have that advantage. I am not about to eat bugs, and even if I did, I don't think the chicks would copy me. I felt bad for the bug, but it's something that needs to be done - that's going to be one of The Girls' jobs: eating bugs in the yard. I hope they learn quickly that bugs are tasty treats for them.

Mama Chicken with her brood -
May they rest in peace

My Girls don't have names. My sister has really good names for all her chickens, but I just can't come up with anything I like. I had Miss Poopy Butt for a little while, but that is no longer relevant, and I suppose not very flattering. My sister said that she has two favorites out of her bunch - Tank and Big Red. I guess with names like those, you can imagine them perfectly :) I can't say I have a favorite - I think I am lucky and all my ladies are amiable and have good personalities. One of the Cochins is a bit spazzy, but she still seems to fit in well. With my last 'flock', Brown Chicken was the outsider. She was such a nice chicken, but she was very afraid of Mamma Chicken. I don't see any signs of anyone being ostracized in this bunch so far. I hope it stays that way.

It is really nice to be able to watch the chicks grow up up close and personal - I didn't have this luxury last time. And they are definitely growing up fast! The green markings are finally starting to go away as the adult feathers are growing in. One of The Ladies looks a bit like a bald eagle right now - it's actually kind of cool looking. Her body has her dark adult feathers, but her head still has the light baby feathers...

I try to handle them regularly so they will be easier to handle once they go outside permanently. They like to sit on my lap when working on my computer (one at a time, of course!) :)

As always, feel free to visit my Chicken Cam by clicking at the link at the top of the page!

Well the distraction worked for a little bit, but my back is killing me again. I hope I'll be able to sleep tonight...

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Stupid Planning?

Every year around this time, there is some kind of bike race or bike-a-thon or something involving a lot of people riding bicycles. Every year there are what seems like a hundred cyclists bogging down the streets of Niagara County. I don't know what it's for or what it supports (if anything), but I am amazed that I don't hear on the news of dozens of people being killed or maimed during this event.

Who plans the route for this thing? Granted, I don't know the whole route, but everywhere I've seen these guys riding has been on a busy and/or dangerous road. With so many bike paths around, why can't those be used? Or maybe a more bike friendly area?

I've seen these bikers riding on Transit Road - with volunteers (I'm assuming) stopping four lanes of traffic repeatedly to let one or two of them go by. Every other road I've seen them on over the years were two lane back roads with speed limits of 45 - 55 mph with no shoulder at all for them to ride on. Not a very safe place to be riding a bicycle.

It's even a horrible experience getting out of my driveway on Event day. At my present house, it isn't as bad - I don't have to back out onto the street so it's easier to see the bikers coming. At my old house I didn't have that option and I did have to back out onto the street. Every year I was terrified of hitting someone (my house happened to sit on a curve). Once I had to wait almost ten minutes before I could leave my driveway. That may not seem like a long time, but just try it some time... sit at the end of your driveway for ten minutes before going to where you need to go - it seems like forever.

At both houses, there are/were never people riding bikes down the street - presumably because people have better sense. On normal days, I didn't/don't have to worry about hitting cyclists or pedestrians while pulling out of the driveways. But BEWARE on Event day.

I think that whoever is in charge of planning the route needs to rethink it. The present route - at least what I've seen of it - is a menace to the cyclists and drivers alike.

Thursday, June 4, 2009


I took a break today and made some progress in my garden after I got home from work - it's been over a week since I've done anything, and I really need to get moving.

I got my peppers and beets in at least. And I have pink strawberries... pretty soon fresh berries - Yum!

The big news is that SuperWorm - the biggest, fattest, slimiest worm on the planet (well maybe not the planet - but definitely my little part of it) has reappeared. This time I pulled out my camera to prove it's existence :)

OK, so the picture isn't that impressive - but next time you're by your garden tools, pick up your weeder and take a good look at it. This picture proves that the worm is thicker than the shaft of the weeder - that's thick for a worm! It's definitely a lot more impressive (and icky) in real life. Hopefully SuperWorm will help me have a SuperGarden this year :)

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


I can't believe it's been a week since my last post.

I can't believe that I have nothing to write about.

I've been concentrating hard on job hunting, and it's just unbelievable how time-consuming a task that is. Even tho' I have all my information together, it seems to take forever to fill out applications. And so many applications are so very redundant - why ask for a copy of my resume if you are going to make me reiterate the whole thing in pieces in the application? All I can do is hope that something good falls my way soon. My hours at work are changing again for the worse - I get to come home later every day than I have been. Lucky me.

The baby chicks are doing good - they are growing up so fast! I need to take some pictures before they are all grown up. They are so funny looking right now - they are getting their adult feathers on their bodies, but their heads and butts still have the fuzzy chick fluff.

My odometer hit another milestone: 141414

Sadly, that's my story for the week.

I need to become independently wealthy so most of my time is freed up to do fun and productive stuff instead of being at work or looking for other work :)