New Year Kitty, and looking ahead

Happy New Year! I hope you all had a wonderful time last night, kicking out the old year, and bringing in the new. 🙂

For us, we don’t normally do a whole lot. Living away from town or city celebrations is quite within our preferences! We had good food, each other’s company, and the entertainment of cats that were very interested in those good food smells! 😉

This morning, as I went into the sun room, I discovered one of the spice boys in there! He would have been there since yesterday morning. 😦 Not a very good New Year’s Eve for him!

Normally, when a cat gets accidentally closed up in there, we hear a ruckus or meowing and know to let them out.

We heard no such ruckus.

I suspect he didn’t actually mind being in there all that much. It’s much warmer than outside, and there are soft things to curl up on. He had to have been pretty hungry and thirsty by morning, though!

I’m not even sure which of the spice boys it was. As soon as the door opened, he ran and hid under the swing bench, then peeked at me. The two of them look so much alike, and move so constantly, it’s really hard to tell which is which unless they are next to each other. Even then, we haven’t decided which one is Nutmeg and which one is Ginger! 😀

That didn’t stop both of them – and four other cats! – from following me around as I finished my rounds!

Just look at that face! 😀 What a glare!

Today is going to be a quiet day of rest for us, then tomorrow is going to be a busy one! I will be heading into the city to do our monthly shop, as early in the day that I can. When I get home, we’ll unload the groceries, then load up the garbage and recycling for a much delayed trip to the dump. Earlier in the week, I had my days mixed up and thought we could do it on Thursday night, thinking that New Year’s fell on Saturday, not Friday. Thankfully, Saturday is the one day a week they are open for a full 8 hours – and it’s not a holiday – so we will have time make the trip to the city first. It’s been so long since we’ve gone to the dump, though, we might have to make two trips. We shall see.

Amazingly, it’s going to warm up quite a bit over the next couple of days. For Sunday, the predictions keep going up, and are now at 2C

Yes. Two degrees above freezing. In January! That would be 35.6F Then it’s supposed to stay warmer than -10C/14F for the next two weeks.

I had feared we would have another bitterly cold couple of months, as we had for the previous winters we have been here. I am really going to enjoy a milder winter – and the reduced electricity/heating bills. Even our equal payment plan payments will drop, with temperatures this warm! Before we were able to get on the equal payment plan, we were paying over $600 a month for December, January and February. Last year, we had a month were we would have been paying over $700 for our electricity. On months like that, our equal payment plan adjusted to a little over $300. Usually, it’s about $290, though it’s dropped to as low as $250ish.

This house is not very energy efficient, at all! 😦 And the upstairs is freezing cold in the winter, with it’s one heat vent for the entire floor. When I stand at the bottom of the stairs, I can feel cold coming down, like a breeze. The girls put sheets of rigid insulation on the walls by their beds, which they then covered with decorative fabric, which made a big difference. Without out the insulation, they were actually feeling waves of cold, coming off the walls. !! This year, they haven’t even needed to use their little heater, yet. Meanwhile, in the summer, it gets insanely hot up there. :-/

Of course, with snow on the ground, my mind keeps going ahead to garden plans. In fact, I’ve been almost obsessed with garden plans! In a good way. 😉 I’ve been researching on different ways to start seeds indoors – something we had issues with last year. I am constantly reading about how important it is to use grow lights, which is something we just don’t have and can’t afford right now.

Or…

Maybe we do…

Everything I’ve been reading says ordinary lights can be used, so long as they’re bright enough.

We have two aquariums.

The little 20 gallon one I’ve given up on after the last fish finally died, has a light that is part of the lid, so no worries about the cats getting into it. It can hold one of the seed starter trays we have now, and maybe a bit more.

The big tank has two lights. The original that it came with, and one we got later. The glass lids on the big tank eventually broke and couldn’t be used. The original light rested very close to the glass lids, which actually caused problems with algae growth and scale forming on the undersides. When we had to get rid of the glass lids, the light was no longer protected from what little splashing there was from the filter output, so we got one that with risers that set it higher off the frame. It also has a built in timer.

Since a piece of the filter system broke during the move and we have not been able to find a replacement part, the tank has been used to store baskets, hidden by a cover that the cats can sit on. If we can find a way to cover the top of the tank to keep the cats out, while still allowing full light and air flow, that tank would make an excellent greenhouse for a whole several seed trays or lots of pots! We plan to use at least 3″ pots to start squash, this time, and we have a lot of summer and winter squash we want to start this year! 🙂

So that is going to be a project for the next while. I’m pretty sure I have enough hardware cloth left cover the top of the big tank. I just have to figure out how to make a frame that can handle the weight of cats that are sure to jump on it, while making sure the stands that hold the light will still sit on the tank edges, where they are supposed to.

That would leave us with one more aquarium light from the big tank. If we can find a way to set that up over trays and keep the cats off at the same time, we could have even more seed trays well lit.

This might actually work.

The Re-Farmer

5 thoughts on “New Year Kitty, and looking ahead

  1. Tomorrow is our big grocery shop too. Thankfully I am able to order it online and they shop for us and bring it to the car. I haven’t stepped foot in the grocery store in almost 8 months. I go to Costco about every three months for the staple items. Our house is insulated okay but our room upstairs over the garage gets cold because it is on a separate heat run and we don’t like to turn it on. We keep it about 50-60 which is okay for sleeping but getting out of bed is tough. Your project sounds like a great idea!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks!

      re: grocery shopping, we’ve used such services before when our vehicle died, and while it was handy for such a situation, it had its problems. If something I want is not available, I want the option to look around at what *is* available to get instead. That sort of thing. Plus, we don’t have a credit card, and a surprising number of places can’t do debit Visa. :-/

      Like

      • Some simply can’t. Their POS systems can’t process them. That’s why I have to pick up my husband’s prescriptions in the pharmacy parking lot and pay with wireless debit, since they don’t honour medical exemptions in the mask mandate. If we had a credit card, they would deliver the meds to our place, even as far away as we are!

        Liked by 1 person

      • I learned something new today! This is information that is important to know. I never thought of now being able to pay with debit card anywhere.

        Liked by 1 person

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