Scrambling to catch up, and a court update

Today turned out to be a lovely day. Sunny, and at a high of 8C/46F, warmer than predicted. It made it very hard to believe that there is a storm and blizzard coming our way, starting tomorrow! While my phone’s weather app has been saying a blizzard was coming since yesterday, it was only until early this afternoon that my desktop app changed its forecast and began giving weather alerts.

After losing so much time yesterday, today was a day to scramble and get the essentials done. The rest will wait until spring.

Last night, the girls lifted the roof on the cat’s house, cleaned it out and replaced the old straw with fresh. Unfortunately, the heated water bowl had to be removed; the cord’s sheath had cracked, right where it contacted the bowl itself, exposing wire. That is unfortunate, as the heated water bowl made a huge difference last winter! So far, however, we are still expected to have mild temperatures, so we won’t need to plug in the electricity to the shelter. Which is good, because I forgot to buy a new 9V battery for the fire alarm we have in there. The ceramic terrarium bulb we have in there for warmth is well shielded, but we still want to have the alarm functional as a safety precaution.

I don’t know of the cats are happy with the clean up. I haven’t seen them in there, yet!

When I headed out this morning to do my rounds, I counted 20 cats.

But only Nosencrantz was willing to pause for a photo! 😀

One of the things I took care of while doing my rounds was to finally scatter some wildflower seeds.

I had two packages of wildflower seeds that were meant for the area outside the yard, in front of where the new sign is. Eventually, I want that entire strip to be filled with wildflowers for the pollinators – and so I don’t have to mow it anymore! I used a bulk sized spice shaker and some soil to scatter the seeds evenly.

This was something I expected to do in the middle of September, but it was just too warm. I didn’t want to risk the seeds germinating too early, and getting killed off when winter temperatures arrived. With the storm coming, these will get covered with snow and should be good to lie dormant until things melt in the spring.

Last night, the girls also used the insulated tarp we found in the garage a while back and used that to cover the septic tank, instead of straw. It’s large enough that it could be used, folded in half. It was full dark by then, so they just weighted it down with some fence posts. This morning, I shifted it a bit to get it right up against the house, then pegged it down.

As you can see by the two pegs on the right, I hit some rocks in the process!

By the time I pegged that down, I was done my rounds and headed inside to go through the trail cam files while eating breakfast. It was rather funny to see all the files of my mother and I, when I took pictures of her at the new sign. It feels so weird to see myself on video! 😀

By the afternoon, things had started to warm up nicely, so I headed outside.

The first thing I wanted to get done was scatter a different wildflower seed mix in the yard.

This one was an alternative lawn mix, for shade and partial shade, of flowers native to Western Canada. This double row of trees is really hard to tend, so I settled on this as the location for the seeds. Unlike the area in front of the sign, though, this one needed to be raked, first.

The first raking was to remove the leaves and debris, then it got raked again to loosen the soil surface a bit. There were some maple and willow suckers coming out of old stumps that needed to be pruned as well.

Then the packet – one larger packet of seeds – got added to the shaker with some soil and thoroughly mixed before being scattered on the raked ground.

Then, the leaves got raked back, as a mulch.
I look forward to seeing if this works in the spring!

One of the priorities on our to-do list was to finally repot our house plants. They’ve been hit with overnight frost, but amazingly, the aloe vera was still alive! They were overgrowing their post, though, so most of them ended up in the trench of the third low raised bed, to break down, except the biggest one that was too big to be buried in there, so it went to compost. I ended up transplanting 4 or 5 strong, healthy little aloe vera for the girls to bring inside later. The umbrella tree looked dead, but I pruned it back and repotted it, because it does actually seem to still have life to it! I would hate to have lost that thing. It had been doing so well, even with the cats constantly trying to get into it!

One of my daughters was working on commissions, so she could only come out to help briefly. My other daughter tried to help, but she was feeling sick and looked so horrible, I sent her inside. Poor thing felt so bad! She did, however, get the last hose put away for me, and was kind enough to run into the basement to shut off the water to the taps.

Once the water was shut off, I opened the back tap and put one of the new insulated hard covers for the taps on it, then finished putting up the rest of the insulation we put around the bottom of the house. This area had been left until we were done with using the taps, and the septic was covered. The front tap still needs its cover, but it is much more convenient to get at, so it can wait a bit.

Along with some other clean up, I did finally make it to the squash tunnel to prepare it for next year, but was only able to do one side before I had to go in for an expected phone call. The rain barrel was turned on its side and weighted down, the long tools and rolling seat went into the old garden shed, and the storage bin we kept to hold shorter tools and various other things we might find handy, went into the sun room. The things we have left undone are all things that will be okay if they wait until spring. It was just time to finally put the tools away!

Then I made a quick run into town to get a few things we thought we might run out of. The predicted storm is supposed to hit the south of our province, but it’s hard to know if we’ll get hit by it as well, or just catch the edges of it. At the very least, we expect to lose internet more often. That happens any time there is bad weather to the south of us. Though it is supposed to start with rain, we might get about a foot of snow, over two days, at which point we won’t be going anywhere for a while! I had already planned on tomorrow to be a baking day, and the last thing I wanted was to runout of ingredients in the middle of something!

Meanwhile…

I got an email from our vandal’s lawyer asking if I were available for the case management session on Monday. That went back and forth for a while. It turns out it will not be with just me, him and our vandal. It will be with the same judge that we’ve been in front of, this whole time.

My brother will not be able to make it, but we don’t want to delay this any more, so I took it. I feel more confident knowing that the judge will be there. The unfortunate thing is that it is going to be at 9am – in the big city, not the closer, small one we’ve been going to all this time. Worse; the court offices are downtown. So not only will I have to leave unfortunately early, just to make sure I have time to get lost among all those one way streets, but it’s going to cost more in fuel, and I’ll have to pay for parking. Minor things, but with costs going up, there just isn’t much wiggle room in the budget! Very annoying. But, it’s that, or wait a year for a trial. :-/

So that has been confirmed.

I am both looking forward to getting it done so quickly, and dreading it.

At least, by then, wherever snowfall we get from the storm will no longer be an issue. There will be plenty of time for any road clearing needed to be done by then!

As for our scramble to get stuff done, no, we weren’t able to finish it all, but the essentials are done, and the rest should be all right to wait until next year.

Speaking of next year, we’re made progress there, today, but that will be the topic of my next post! 🙂

The Re-Farmer

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