Trees And Other Things

Discussion in 'Personal Diaries' started by Nancy Hart, Jun 21, 2018.

  1. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Veteran Member
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    Cats and Opossums

    An odd thing to me out at the farm is the almost total absence of cats. We've spotted many over the years, but usually just one time and never again.

    One exception was a very friendly one who took up in our new barn. I suspected it might have lived in the area and was just shopping around for a better place. It was a neutered male. My mother really liked him. She finally fixed a box on the back porch for him to sleep in. The box seemed way too small, but he loved it. He stayed around for a couple of years sleeping in that box every night.

    upload_2020-5-19_13-21-36.png

    One morning he wasn't there. I searched everywhere. Asked the neighbor, Mr. L, if he had seen a gray cat, and he replied that all the cats out there get killed by coyotes. For weeks I blamed myself for encouraging the cat to leave the barn so the coyotes could more easily get him.

    There is a pipe coming from the heat pump that constantly drips water. A couple of years ago I found an otherwise healthy looking young cat lying dead right at that pipe, as if it had simply gone to sleep. To me it looked like poison. The most common rat poison causes excessive thirst.

    This January a possum came from that drain pipe and crossed the driveway in broad daylight. At first it looked like it might be another case of poison---staggering, lack of control in back legs. After looking at a video I noticed its tail was missing. Maybe it was staggering due to the injury. Maybe a coyote got its tail.

    By coincidence a possum walked across the lawn in town while the painters were here last week. It reminded me of the other one, which I had been trying to forget. A clip of this one is attached to the end of the video. I kind of like 'possums. They don't hurt a thing out in the country. They don't even get rabies; their body temp is too low.

    All this reminded me of a cat we had in Ohio that got its back legs caught in a steel trap the neighbor boys set and failed to ever check.

    (HD better viewed full screen)
     
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    Last edited: May 20, 2020
  2. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Veteran Member
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    I'm usually successful in putting thoughts like those in the previous post out of my mind, because they serve no useful purpose except to make you angry and sad, but I'm in a not very good mood lately, and seem to want to wallow in unpleasant thoughts. I think I need to take a break.

    The nurses at the after-hospital rehab center where my mother stayed said if an elderly person becomes angry and difficult to deal with, a good solution that almost always works is to put them doing some simple task, like folding towels, to keep them busy. I've got 4 projects lined up which may serve that purpose. I think I'll describe them first here, because when I put things down in writing I'm more likely to follow up on them. And maybe just describing them will be enough to change my mood. lol
     
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    Last edited: May 20, 2020
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  3. Beth Gallagher

    Beth Gallagher Veteran Member
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    Nancy, I think a lot of us are struggling with anxiety and negative thoughts; this pandemic thing is raising the depression rate for sure.

    As for things that make us angry and sad, I have often wondered why negative thoughts and bad memories seem to stay with a person in sharp detail. The things I'd most like to totally forget seem to reside in my head forever.
     
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  4. Von Jones

    Von Jones Veteran Member
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    #1264
  5. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Veteran Member
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    Beth, if you read between the lines what made me angry had more to do with the neighbor, Mr. L (for Liar). I purposely made the post vague for my own amusement, and because it's speculation which unfortunately I'll never be able to prove.

    He is a gaslighter. He thinks if he scares a little old lady about nasty coyotes, she'll give him permission to regularly come on the property with his deer rifle (and stand) and keep all of them away. He bothered my parents about deer hunting when they lived here but they always told him to talk to me. Thank you. :rolleyes:

    Recalling the disappearance of the cat made me realize he has been at this coyote scare business for at least 15 years, back when I believed him. It just made me angry all over again. For sure, this guy has gotten into my head. I'm always on guard waiting for the next encounter. I don't want to lose my temper with him.

    Compulsive liars scare the hell out of me, because they can smear you with the neighbors, and figure out ways to make your life miserable, if they don't get their way, and still manage to come out smelling like roses.

    It may sound like I'm imagining hordes of lying people out there, but in fact I've only known 2 other people like him. One I will never see again, and the other I can avoid by simply going offline. To get away from Mr. L, I'd have to sell the property, and I don't want to do that just yet.
     
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  6. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Veteran Member
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    Von, the sad memories that stick with me are the ones where I think I could have changed the outcome by doing something differently.

    We should have searched for the cat a little longer and a little harder. I kept thinking it would show up. If I thought coyotes were after cats I should have left it in the barn. If I thought someone was putting out poison I should have made it a house only cat.

    It's those "should have" bad memories that stick with me. It's makes no sense, but that's the way it has been, with me.
     
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  7. Von Jones

    Von Jones Veteran Member
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    I always get caught up in conversations with my sisters who say 'You don't remember that?' I'm like 'No.' I find myself gazing at the clouds wondering 'They are my sisters they will tell me anything.' I can't remember a story told yet that wasn't about the same thing always something different. How can they remember these times and I can't? I guess more important things in life happened to make me forget, huh?
     
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  8. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Veteran Member
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    One of the 4 projects is small, the other two are big, and I forgot the 4th one already, but it will come to me. These two will be enough to keep busy for now.

    1. When I screened in the front porch I broke a couple of shingles installing the frame near one corner of the house. Didn't fix it because I couldn't figure out how to do it at the time. Painters didn't have any suggestions how to fix it either.

    upload_2020-5-21_0-18-19.png

    Will try to put a piece of hardware cloth in those gaps, then cover it with some kind of plaster. The gap is less than 2" wide. Would like something smooth, hard, and fast setting, like Plaster of Paris, but it says only for interior applications. Maybe quick dry cement?.. .I have a feeling PP will work just fine because there are ways to water proof it. If it doesn't, I'll knock it out and try something else.

    2. There is a sinkhole that's been in the front yard forever. I keep adding stuff and it keeps sinking. Water drains into it when it rains and eventually ends up in the basement if it rains long enough.

    I've got to get to the bottom of it. Literally.

    Will start digging. If I never get to the bottom, or it heads toward the house foundation, or there is a bunch of rotting construction trash down there, I'll have to get someone to come dig it out to the foundation and fill it in. Otherwise I'll figure out something else to do. Long story. Hopefully it's just rotting tree roots.
     
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    Last edited: May 21, 2020
  9. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Veteran Member
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    The projects are not going well. It has been raining off and on since Friday, predicting 50-80% chance every day for next 8 days, sprinkling right now. I don't have the stuff ordered for the only indoor project. Too many decisions.

    Project #3:. Replace the carpet pads on the stairs

    This house had fully carpeted stairs when I bought it. I removed it and had the tops refinished, bare wood. They turned out really nice, red heart pine. The cats scratched the polyurethane coating with their toenails, so I had to buy some cheap peel and stick pads. They are finally coming off after decades. I still have a cat.

    Two days searching on the internet for new ones and finally settled on these. They have attached double sided tape. Two things I don't like. There are 18 steps and they only come in 15 or 12. At least 9 will be wasted. "Due to the skid-resistant rubber backing these stair treads are not machine washable." I didn't want any rubber backing, period, but they all seem to have it.

    upload_2020-5-26_11-20-49.png

    Did one last search last night and stumbled on a place in Chicago that will make custom stair treads and rugs. They look better quality ("1/4″ thick Berber Loop ").

    upload_2020-5-26_10-11-13.png

    For the same money I can also get a matching rug for the landing. They don't mention any rubber backing. Could be from the same place. Who knows. They have 21 different color patterns, and will take 2 weeks. By the time I make up my mind the rain will have stopped. :rolleyes:
     
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  10. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Veteran Member
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    I almost missed this.

    Was just going to place my order for the stair treads but couldn't get one of them into the Cart. Sent an email inquiry to the company. While waiting for a reply I found these. Now I have to change the order. The cat will love them.

    They are called Bling Fluffy Shaggy Treads :D

    upload_2020-5-26_18-49-17.png

     
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    Last edited: May 26, 2020
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  11. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Veteran Member
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    Put in the order for the carpet yesterday. Normally takes 2 weeks. Today they've reversed the weather forecast to no rain in sight for a week, after today. Perfect timing. It will probably take 2 weeks to remove the old treads.:p

    Remembered some left over mortar mix for a basement shelf project. Put some of that in the cracks in the shingles today, just to see how it would handle. It may fall out. The space is shallower than I thought.

    There comes a point where if I try to make this stuff look better it only gets worse, so I'm leaving it like this. A couple days drying and and see what happens.

    upload_2020-5-28_15-10-6.png

    This, of course, has opened another can of worms, because I noticed a layer of concrete sitting atop the basement wall that has come loose in places, and should be fixed. Another project.
     
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  12. Bill Boggs

    Bill Boggs Veteran Member
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    Be careful. One project could become fifty.
    245AF444-9FD2-4BE7-86EF-DE33BBC4A596_4_5005_c.jpeg
     
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  13. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Veteran Member
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    :D

    Tell me about it. That's one reason I have trouble getting started on anything.
     
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  14. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Veteran Member
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    Couldn't resist taking off one old stair carpet to see what was under there, then couldn't quit.

    Most came off easily but left thin lines of glue. It comes off only with acetone and a lot of elbow grease. Good news acetone doesn't affect the polyurethane, else I'd be up the creek.

    upload_2020-5-29_11-41-35.png

    The cat scratches have absorbed dirt and glue. I'm tempted to ignore anything that will be covered by the new carpets.

    The carpet on the very first step stuck so well it removed the top layer of poly when I pulled it off. Should have tried a heat gun. Will have to refinish that one and one with cat scratches near the edge. Not confident I can do a good job.

    I have a feeling this project will be delayed at the factory due to the pandemic, so it will now go on the back burner.

    It rained this morning. The mortar patch is still holding. Think I'll start digging while the ground is still wet and see what I find under there. That job will be too easy to quit.
     
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  15. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Veteran Member
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    Strong thunderstorms yesterday afternoon, so no digging. NOW we are supposed to get a break from the rain.

    Picture from last Saturday (5/23/20). There are SO many berries this year they are going to be even smaller than last year. Some are already turning pink and some are just beginning to set on. They will have to be picked over a 2 or 3 week period. At least there has been some rain.

    upload_2020-5-30_9-31-42.png

    The first year canes are giants again this year, and need to be lopped off, I suppose any time now? There has to be a way to make this patch more manageable and productive. Didn't I post all this same stuff just last year?

    upload_2020-5-30_9-46-16.png

    It has been interesting to watch the re-emergence of plants that have been hiding from the goats as roots all these years. OTOH it's beginning to look like a jungle in places again. :(
     
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