Gate is Done and Hung, Going after the Puncture Vine

Gate is Done and Hung, Going after the Puncture Vine.

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Gate is Done and Hung, Going after the Puncture Vine

Finally, the gate is done and hung.  Now I am working on pulling up some of the puncture vine and hope  to start priming and painting the lower half of the house next weekend, if temperatures.  Never ending work, but I love it.  It bothers me that so many things need doing and I don’t like relaxing knowing I’m not doing those.  I think after 20 years on this project, I need to learn to kickback and enjoy because it is never going to be finished to my satisfaction.

Looking East to West.  Fence and gate are done.
Looking East to West. Fence and gate are done.
Looking West to East
Looking West to East
A better picture of the gate
A better picture of the gate
Looking through the fence to the back pastures
Looking through the fence to the back pastures

Now for a little more details on the puncture vines.  They are all over the place.  The seed spreads by puncturing the tires of the mower until they see a little spot then they pop off and imbed themselves in the ground.  5 years ago we didn’t see any but we can’t hardly get ahead of it now.

Another thing I did this weekend was to groom Kinzie.  She really doesn’t like it, so I have give her lots of hugs and kisses.  I put her up on an old coffee table then I don’t have to sit on the floor of bend over so much as I am not that agile or limber any more and these old bones hurt.  When I was finished with as much as she would let me and I told her to get down.  Instead she curled up and took a nap.  I sure do love my fur-baby.

Kinzie on the old coffee table which has been turned into a grooming table.
Kinzie on the old coffee table which has been turned into a grooming table.

While working on this post I heard my grandson Leon out front of the house trying to pull an old lawn mower out of the weeds, as he is going to work on that as a project this summer.  Uncle Troy is going to mentor him in doing it.  This is going to be interesting.  I guess he has a mechanical interest.  That can’t be a bad thing.

In pulling out the mower, he came upon a bee’s hive.  A pretty BIG bee’s hive.  You should have seen that city boy run, but I think his dad ran faster.  Hehe.  Here’s a few pictures for you viewing pleasure.

Watch those boys run

P1020324

Leon's project
Leon’s project
Checking out the hive.
Checking out the hive.
A double shot of bee spray
A double shot of bee spray
Running for the hills
Running for the hills

Now that made my afternoon.

Back to the weeds.  Here is my solution to the goats head aka puncture vine, gather together the vine as much as possible without dropping the pointy seeds, dig down to get the root and pull up and put in a container for disposal.  Then you can lay a piece of styrofoam on the ground and walk on it and it will come up with a lot of the loose seeds stuck on it.  Now you just scrape those little devils into the container.  You can never get them all, but you can get a lot of them.  The styrofoam idea came from a co-work.  It works Walt.  Wahoo.  🙂

One cluster of puncture vine.  You can identify it by it's lacy leaves and yellow flowers, and it thorny seeds.
One cluster of puncture vine. You can identify it by it’s lacy leaves and yellow flowers, and it thorny seeds.
an even bigger patch along the driveway.
an even bigger patch along the driveway.
The weed digger and disposal kit.
The weed digger and disposal kit.

Well, I guess that about sums up my weekend.  Back to the salt mines tomorrow.  Weekends go by too fast, but I don’t know that I could physically deal with a longer weekend.

Annie, The weed pullin’, gate hangin’ country girl.

Boiling Hot Washington Weekend

Happy 4th of July.

As you can tell from the title, we are cooking in Washington State and don’t see any relief until maybe Friday.  In the 100’s every day, after coming out of a week in the 100’s. This means that I didn’t complete the task I set out doing 2 weeks ago.  Weed whacking part of the back yard. Nor did we (Lynn) make any progress on the gate.

So that meant that I needed to get some inside work done.  The stuff that I have been putting off, and putting off some more.  So here is the progress report:

I had Friday off for the holiday. and was totally useless.  I tend to do that on 3-day-weekends.  My mind or my body refuses to work on anything, the first day.  What a lazy girl I am.

So I get up on Saturday, the 4th, racked with guilt because I wasn’t productive, decided to make up for lost time.  First on the agenda, while it was a cool 80+ degrees, I decided that I was going to get the outside in shape with my new handy dandy weed whacker.  I made it about 10 feet and it looped onto some electric fence wire.  A big bunch of wire.  Well I proceeded to get it all untangled.  That done, now we begin again.  Having an ear for this trusty little gizmo, it was sounding funny and wouldn’t run quite right, so I turned it upside down to see what was amiss and I couldn’t see anything wrong.  Luckily my son Steven was standing next to me and said “you broke the belt, Mom.”  I didn’t know it had a belt :(.  Did I mention I HATE mechanical stuff.  Well that ended any of the outdoor work.

Not one to be dissuaded, I figured we would go to town for groceries as it wasn’t getting cooler and we need to get back so Kinzie could come in the house out of the heat.  She can’t be trusted in the home alone as she is a veracious chewer.

Back at home, Kinzie safely snoozing on the floor in front of the AC vent, and I am ready to do some of the indoor work.  I have a mile long list, so I am not at a loss for things to do.  The one thing I have avoided for (well since we moved in), is putting up the towel racks in the master shower.  I don’t know why I didn’t want to do this task, but I just didn’t.  Any way, I had bought a 5/16 drill bit especially for the tile and I needed to find two spots between studs, to mount them with these drywall thingamajigs that really hold tight.  I found I liked using those, thingies, when I was installing the closets.

Well the towel bars were 24″ Moen (Vale style) brushed nickle.  They matched some of the other bathroom hardware.  Anyway, the first thing I did was use the template to mark my holes that I needed to drill and made sure they were level and that the holes would be avoiding the studs.  Figured that out with my handy dandy stud finder.

The marking and drilling went fine, and now it was time to put in the drywall thingies.  I don’t think the manufacture took into account the thickness of the tile, nor did little ole me, and the thingies didn’t want to spread out like they were supposed to, so it was a little tougher getting them in.  Then I had to pry one out, but eventually I was able to get them in after a few (alright a-lot) of mishaps.  Here is a picture of my progress:

If you look close you can see the little holes I drilled.
If you look close you can see the little holes I drilled.
Some tools and template
Some tools and template
Thingamajigs
Thingamajigs
First towel bar up
First towel bar up
My failures.
My failures.
The 2 towel racks installed and ready to be used.
The 2 towel racks installed and ready to be used.

Now I’m on a roll.  I have a toilet paper holder, a towel ring, and a mirror that needs to be installed in the 1/2 bath off the back door utility entrance.  This went very smooth (finally).  I installed a pivoting toilet paper holder, Moen (Vale) style.  That is the handiest thing!  I really like the style.  Have one in the master bath, and I need to buy 2 more for the upstairs.  They are about twice the price of a regular TP holder, but worth it.

I also installed the towel ring.  It is from Glacier Bay and it is White Porcelain.  I am not above mixing it up, if I like the looks of the accessories.

Now for the mirror.  It came with the vanity and I just haven’t gotten around to installing it.  It had two little wire triangles to hang it on.  We got this vanity set about 10 years ago when we saw it on sale.  Liked it then and like it now.  Hanging the mirror was a little tricky, but I got it done.  Now, I just cross my fingers and hope those little triangles hold it securely of which I am not too trusting.  If it falls, it will ruin the porcelain sink also.  Now for those pictures:

Pivoting Toilet Paper Holder
Pivoting Toilet Paper Holder
Nothing like a full roll
Nothing like a full roll
Towel Ring in the 1/2 bath
Towel Ring in the 1/2 bath
Finally got the morrow up.  Love it.
Finally got the mirror up. Love it.

Later in the afternoon we cooked out hamburgers with Steven and Leon and Sierra.  Steven did the grilling and we all pitched in and had a wonderful ending to the day.  Then the kids headed into town for the fireworks.

Had a wonderful 4th.

Sunday

Wanted to get out and mow the back yard before the weeds got too high.  Of course the gate is not finished so Lynn can’t get into the back yard to mow with the rider (which is now fixed) so I decided that I would mow it with the walk behind.  Haven’t used it since last year.  Gassed it up, checked the oil and primed it.  On the first pull it started right up and quickly died.  So in working the throttle, I discovered it was broken and not hooked up.  So I set to dismantling it.  Pretty simple really, just one bolt.  After a few tries, I fixed that.  But it still wouldn’t start.  So along came Lynn as the back-up.  By this time I was done with trying to get it to start, so I stomped (really stomped) over to Steven’s and borrowed his Toro as I knew it worked as he was using it Friday.  Lynn said he could get ours started so I let him try for the next 15 minutes without success.  I told him that oil was leaking out of the side so there was something wrong with it.  Not really wanting any mechanical input from me, he just shrugged and said do what you want.  Another piece of —-, not working.  Did I mention I hate mechanical stuff.  Ugh.

Well I got the Toro running without a hitch, but Kinzie wasn’t having it.  She doesn’t mind the riding mowers, but she hates the walk-behind-mower and the walk-behind-weed-whacker, and growls and barks and throws an absolute fit.  I have never mowed when she was in the back yard before as I would usually lock her on the porch out of the way, so I wasn’t prepared when she came up behind me and took a big nip at my bottom.  On reflex I turned around and swatted the heck out of her snout.  She didn’t break the skin because I was wearing jeans, but I don’t think she expected the mower to bite back… She gave me a wide birth after that.  Neither of us was hurt.  Except her feelings.  Nothing sadder than a collie with her head hanging down.  She has never bite me even when I am brushing her.  So it was a shock to both of us.  I think she saw me as an extension of the mower.

I mowed half of the back yard but had to stop as I was getting too hot.  So inside to the air conditioning I went.

Stay tuned for another update next week.

Annie, with her bottom in tact. 🙂