Looking good!

I’m happy to say that when I came out to do the cat stuff this morning (bringing 2 gallons of warm water, since we now have such a large heated water bowl), there was still liquid water left in BOTH heated water bowls!

The smaller metal ones were, of course, frozen. At this point, I think maybe we don’t even need them anymore, other than it allows for more cats to drink at the same time. It’s less of an issue with the water than the kibble. They don’t usually all try to drink at the same time, so having the four water bowls so close together works out. When the kibble comes out, though, they are all after the food at once. Not only do they not all fit in the kibble house (I counted “only” 25 this morning), but some of them don’t get along with the others. To avoid aggressive behaviour, along with the trays in the kibble house, I put a couple of handfuls of kibble into two of the shelf shelter shelves, a long line of kibble on the cat house roof – sometimes two, if I can reach – handfuls at three openings to under the cat house, the two trays under the water shelter, a tray just inside the entry into the cat house, a tray just under the eaves of the water shelter (the same spot it was in when the kibble house was there), and finally into a bowl under the shrine across the yard. Rosencrantz in particular prefers to eat at under the shrine, well away from any other cats. She’s gotten meaner to the other cats this year!

It sounds like a lot, but it’s still just a gallon sized container of kibble that’s spread out. This way, even the littlest, shiest and most picked on cats still get some food.

When I was finishing up my rounds, I found the bitty baby and Broccoli in the water shelter. Those ramps are being well used.

Broccoli got her name because she looked so much like Cabbages. This year, Broccoli had two calico kittens. (I think they’re both hers, plus a tortie. I’ve lost track!) I’m thinking we should call the new calicos Brussel and Sprout.

But I digress!

The bitty seems to be handling the colder temperatures really well, and has no hesitation about going outside and playing. Unfortunately, I couldn’t see what the temperature was inside the cat house. The two south facing windows were frosted over on the inside, and the big east facing window…

… was full.

Actually, there was too much reflection in the window that I couldn’t see past, but it was really funny trying to peer in and realizing just how many kittens were crowded at the window! Including both of Broccoli’s calicos. Several had run away when I came close, but I can still see at least seven in the photo.

One of the things I made sure to do this morning was stir around the smoldering ashes from the branch pile, then bank it up again. The pile is slowly getting smaller! What’s interesting is that some of the cats have figured out that they can sit near it and keep warm. When I was first starting the burn, they were a problem, because they were so used to going into the pile and playing. Meanwhile, I’m trying to keep it lit, and had to keep chasing them out of the branches. Once it really got going, though, there was enough heat that they kept away. Now, it’s just a warm, smoldering heap, and every now and then I’ll look over, and see a cat or three, loafed on the snow-free ground around it, enjoying the warmth.

Speaking of warmth, I was just looking at the 10 day forecast on one of my weather apps. Apparently, we’re only going to have one day with the high dropping down to -10C/14F – but 10 days from now, we’re apparently going to get highs above freezing!

That would be a good time for the roofers to show up. So far, no word on when that is going to happen.

The Re-Farmer

It got a bit chilly last night!

When I came out this morning to feed the yard cats, I found the heated water bowl empty again, even though it was refilled a couple of times, yesterday. I always put the kibble out first, but when I first rinsed out the empty water bowl, I had kittens already jumping into the water shelter, going for the bowl! They were very thirsty.

The two metal bowls were, of course, frozen. They, at least, are easier to bash the ice out of, so I did them first.

The big plastic bowl, however…

… that took a bit more effort! Basically, I just chopped a hole in the middle. In these temperatures, I don’t want to shatter the plastic.

I should probably plug it in, just to test it out and see if it still works. It stopped working last winter, but there is no sign of damage. The extension cord from the cats’ house has only one plug but, if it works, it would be worth replacing that with another cord with multiple plugs.

In other things, after getting the plugged drain cleared yesterday, I set up the washing machine and ran it through a “tub clean” cycle. I stood there and watched it for about half an hour, before it started to drain!

I love having a washing machine with a window in the lid! 😄 It doesn’t take much to entertain me!

Once it started draining, I had my finger hovering over the pause button, ready to hit is if water suddenly started spurting out the drain pipe again. I also kept a close eye on the floor for any leaks.

Everything worked fine!!!

I gotta say, though, the water running into the drain is LOUD now! The washer pushed that water out and a very high velocity, so even with the pipe clear, it still sounds like it’s backing up a bit. Whether it actually is or not, I’m not entirely sure. The important part, though, is that we can put away that sump pump hose we’d been using to run the water out the door! Now that we’re no longer needing to run it through the storm door window, we can also insulate the main doors for the winter, so we don’t get frost building up on the inside.

Which reminds me. We need to insulate between the dining room doors, too, for the same reason. At least with that one, we can just shove the insulation in and leave it. We don’t use those doors. For the main entry, we have to figure out how to fix the sheets to the door. The first time we did it, we used self adhesive strips of Velcro and attached it to the inside door. Unfortunately, we discovered that there’s enough of an air pressure change when we opened the door. Between that and the cold, the adhesive strips started to give out and once they did, they never stuck properly again, so every time we opened the door, the insulation would get pulled loose. Because of this, we never use the insulation last winter, and that was not good.

So now we’re trying to figure out a way to maybe tie the insulation to the door somehow, or maybe attach it to the storm door, instead.

We won’t be able to get it done for this winter, but by next winter, I hope that we will finally be able to replace the entire door/frame assembly with a proper, insulated, metal door hung on a metal frame. We don’t use these doors as much, though, as going through the sun room works so much better, so at least it’s not an urgent thing. It would be really good if we could replace it with a wider, more accessible door, too. The arm bar mounted in between the doors is great, but all the doors are a tight fit for my husband’s walker.

On the “when we win the lottery” list: accessible doors, and a wheelchair ramp. The ramp would have to be off the dining room doors, so it would be good to make it part of a covered deck, too. If we do it right, it can double as a greenhouse, too!

Some people dream about winning the lottery and doing things like travel the world or buying nice cars and houses. I just want to renovate this house, and buy the tools and equipment that would allow me to get more work done! Or hire more able bodied people to help do the work we can’t anymore. Which is funny, because we don’t even own this place, but at some point it will go to my brother’s grandsons, and it would be nice to leave them with a place that isn’t falling apart!

The Re-Farmer

All gone, and looking ahead

The snow we had yesterday morning was gone by the end of the day.

Yesterday…

… and today…

I counted 29 cats this morning. Before coming back inside, I even had a chance to catch and cuddle the bitty baby!

The snow may be gone, but the temperatures are below freezing and staying there. At least it will be fairly mild for the next week or so before the highs are expected to start dipping below -10C/14F. I’m hoping the temperatures stay mild like this for a while. That will give the bitty baby more time with mama. We are fully expecting to bring this one indoors before the temperatures get really cold, but it’s definitely not old enough to be weaned yet.

We’re at the point where my morning rounds will now consist more of just switching out the memory cards in the trail cams, and checking on things. Today, I did finally move the stack of logs leftover from the giant branch pile getting chipped. These are logs that seem strong enough and straight enough to use somehow. I ended up restacking them in the old kitchen garden, between the double lilac and the honeysuckle. This is part of the space in that garden we’ve given up on, as it’s so filled with invasive flowers. I’d cleared away the creeping bellflower before they went to seed, but there’s nothing we can do about the low, creeping flowers that look kinda like periwinkle.

Okay, I just went and looked it up and confirmed, it is periwinkle, and yes, it’s considered an invasive plant! It’s been a real struggle to keep it out of the L shaped bed, because they spread through their roots, and my goodness, those roots are hard to get rid of!! I’m hoping turning it into a raised bed will help to at least keep it out of where I want to grow food.

I’d say having the stack of logs there will help keep them under control, too, but they are there to be used next year, and I expect the stack will be gone long before the flowers in that corner start reaching mature sizes.

There is another type of flower that grows in that corner, and all long the house, right through the rocks we put there when we built the path. These spread through their seeds, not their roots, so they’re not as hard to get rid of. I let those go to seed, then gathered most of them. I took them behind the storage house, where there are two rows of trees, all planted way too close together. It’s very hard to keep this area clear and tidy. This is where I’d scattered seeds from an alternative lawn mix we got, but with this spring’s flooding, that area was under water. None germinated, or if they did, they got drowned. So I’ve scattered the seeds from these white flowers in there. I don’t expect the coming spring to have anything other than normal spring snowmelt, so at least some of the seeds should take. I’ve been looking up invasive species in our province and, while I don’t know what these flowers are, I’m not seeing them come up in the lists. It’s one thing for something to be prolific, as these white flowers are, and another to be destructive, as the periwinkle and creeping bellflower are. At least the periwinkle are just in the old kitchen garden. The creeping bellflower is popping up everywhere that we’ve been clearing and cleaning up among the trees. We won’t be able to get rid of them entirely, but we’re hoping to drive them out by planting the things we do want growing there.

But I’m getting ahead of myself.

With the weather turning chilly, we’re moving back into planning stages, thinking ahead to the next growing year!

The Re-Farmer

More off the list, an anniversary – and that didn’t take long! (Updated)

I made it into the city today, but not for a Costco stock-up shopping trip. In fact, very little of what I got today was for stocking up.

After I got home and settled in to start this post, I found a notification from WordPress.

Today is our 5th anniversary since starting this blog!

Five years ago today, my husband and younger daughter were already here for almost a week, having left even earlier than planned when my FIL was suddenly hospitalized. My older daughter and I were downsizing, sorting, and packing things like mad before the movers arrived to finish packing, and we would make the drive out.

Somehow, in the middle of all this, we thought it would be a good idea to start a blog.

What were we thinking? 😂

Things sure have changed in five years!

Anyhow.

I’m happy to say that I took my mother’s car into the city and there were no issues at all with the repaired tire rim. Nothing else broke down either. That’s something I’m always grateful for!

All the stops I planned to make were along one strip, and all pretty close to each other, which made it very convenience.

Not any shorter, though!

My first stop was somewhere I’ve never been to before; Tool Town. I needed to get an affordable tarp large enough to cover that shed roof for the winter.

Oh, this is a dangerous place for me to be in!!! The location is actually pretty small but, my goodness, it was jam packed with so many things we could use!! I had to stick to my budget, though. I got a 20’x30′ medium weight tarp that should do well to cover the needed parts of the shed. Then I just walked through the aisles, ogling all the stuff I wanted to buy! I did get one more item that was on my list, though I was expecting to get it at Canadian Tire. Some time ago, we got a solar powered motion sensor light that’s facing the old kitchen garden, and it works quite well. We have a motion sensor light over the main entry door, but we use the sun room door almost exclusively now. That’s where the cat shelters are, and with things getting dark so quickly, we decided it would be good to get another motion sensor light for over the sun room door. There’s no wiring there, so it has to be solar powered. They had a sale on a larger size light, with two brightness options, for the same price as the smaller size, which was the same was what we already have. So I got the bigger, brighter one. The two items together was still under budget, so that was an added bonus!

My next stop was Canadian Tire, where I got a couple of bags of stove pellets for the litter boxes. I would have gotten more, but I didn’t want to put too much weight in my mother’s little car, and I still needed to get more kibble. I also went looking for a new kibble bin, since the racoons broke apart the lid on the one we have now. There was a sale on 80L bins, making them the same price as the 72L bins. It was the right size for our shelf, so I got the 80L bin. I also got a couple of little things, including a new pair of safety glasses. I bought some not long ago, but they’ve gone missing!

I also checked the prices on tarps. Canadian Tire didn’t have the same size as what I’d about, but the one I got was about a third the cost of their closest size – and that’s before the sale price I actually paid!

It was as I was loading the stuff in the car that I noticed a corner of the bin’s lid was cracked. So I grabbed the lid and went back in to customer service. I left the broken lid and my receipt with the employee after explaining what happened, then quickly went to grab a different one. I figured it would be faster that way.

Well, not quite.

Despite there being so many of the 80L bins on display, there was only 1 matching lid left – and it had a chunk missing from one corner! This was a temporary display, and I knew they had some in the regular aisle for storage bins, so I went there, only to find there were no lids at all in that size.

I went back to customer service and told the employee there weren’t any other lids, except one broken one, on the floor. She called it in to get someone to look elsewhere, but after some time he called back to say he couldn’t find any at all, anywhere.

A bin isn’t much use without a lid, so I returned it. I just hoped I would find something somewhere else.

My next stop was at the international grocery store, where I could also grab a late lunch. There are a few things that we only find in this store, such as the big slabs of uncut bacon, which also happened to be on sale today. I even remembered to go through their pharmacy section and did find some lecithin for the outside cats that was NOT soy based. It was in capsules, but we can open those. I have to remember to ask the cat lady where she gets hers. We might have to order the containers of powdered lecithin online, which I would really prefer not to do, but for so many outside cats, we’d need containers with a whole lot more than what I found! I don’t want to be paying extra for capsules we’ll be breaking open, either.

Update: I messaged the cat lady, asking where she got her lecithin. You mean lysine, she asked?

Oops!

Well, lysine is a lot easier to find, and cheaper. She’s been buying the capsules for humans (the same thing marketed for cats is more expensive) and breaking them open. With so many cats, that’s going to get old fast, so I found and ordered a couple of tubs of the powder. Until it gets here, I can pick up the capsules and use that. So many of the little kittens are dealing with the gooby eyes and stuffy noses right now, I won’t want to wait before treating them.

That done, my last top was at Walmart, where I got a couple of 10kg bags of kibble, and a small cat bed for inside the cats’ house. I had looked through the window where the cat bed is set up, and it was full of bigger kittens, while the bitty baby was by the box bed it’s too small to climb into! I was able to find a small bed that should do nicely. I did also find a new kibble bin that was affordable – and with an intact lid! There weren’t a lot of options for the size and shape I needed. I would have preferred a semi-transparent bin, so we can see how much is in it, but I had to settle for a completely opaque one. After that, I just got a few small items.

When it came time to pay, I went to the single line for the cashiers, instead of the self checkout. There were plenty of tills, and one guy that kept an eye on them before telling the next person in line which till to go to next.

He goofed with me.

The till he sent me to had a couple with a very full cart. It looked like they had to do some price checks, too. They split their purchases into two bills, which made things take longer. The second bill included a microwave, which they got the extended warranty on, so that added more time, too. In the end, they had over $500 in stuff on the second bill alone. Which is fine, but while I was standing there waiting, the guy was sending other customers to other tills, instead of redirecting me to a faster till. At least 8 people who had been in line behind me were through with their purchases, before I was even able to start unloading my cart.

Then he sent a customer to wait behind me, and the couple in front of me wasn’t even paying for their stuff, yet!

It’s a good thing I wasn’t in any hurry, but I sure was glad to finally get out of there.

That done, I could finally start heading home.

While I was gone, the girls started working on the sun room, so there was quite a bit of stuff outside when I drove into the yard to unload. They didn’t get everything out, but they did get the swing bench out, which was the main thing to move. We haven’t been able to get around it to clean up, and when we’ve had yard cats in there for varying lengths of time, they don’t always use the litter box we had in there. Instead, they’d go behind the swing bench.

My daughter was able to get that mess cleaned up, and what a difference that made!

After unloading, I started setting up the new kibble bin, but discovered a problem. The bin just barely fits in the shelf – but only with the lid off! With the lid on, it’s too tall.

Ah, well, It will just have to sit on the floor.

We didn’t open the cat shelter to put in the new cat bed. For the time being, it went onto the swing bench.

It immediately had kittens in it, checking things out.

Then the tuxedo claimed it. That didn’t take long at all! 😄😄

Last I saw, he was asleep in it!

One thing I did make sure to do right away was set up the motion sensor light. I was going to put it above the sun room door, only to realize the solar panel would be shaded by the eaves, so I ended up attaching it to the outer door itself. There was just enough room above the window to screw it in place.

It’s full dark now, so I will be going outside to test the motion sensor later. Before setting it up, I put it on the brighter setting. If it works as it should, it will probably be triggered by cats a lot, but I don’t mind that! 😁 Mostly, I just want to be able to see when we’re topping up the kibble for the evening. It gets dark quite early right now!

So this trip is done, and we only have the Costco trip left for the final stocking up for the month.

That one can wait until after Halloween, though!

The Re-Farmer

So tired…

Who knew that sitting around all day could be so exhausting?

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I was up early to do my rounds before heading to my mother’s, timing it so I would get there before the official time range for the exterminator guy. The hope was that he would start at my mother’s town and building early in the day. Then we’d do some stuff around town, have lunch together, and she was even considering staying in the lobby for a few hours at the end of the day, until she could go back into her apartment. Maybe after only 6 hours, though she is supposed to stay away for 12 hours, due to respiratory issues.

So we waited.

And waited.

And had repeated visits from a neighbour that was also waiting – with her cat in a carrier in the lobby/ A neighbour that is one of those people that will wander in and start talking, and not leave. Even when I finally got some Chinese take out and we were eating, she swung by twice – first to tell us the guy was there, then she came back to tell us she’d made a mistake. As we chatted, I found out she’s someone who should be staying away for 12 hours, too, but she never has. !!

After hours of being ready to leave at any time, my mother was really tired and tried to nap several times. Of course, the neighbour tried to come in while she was napping, too. By the time the guy arrived, my mother was fighting a wicked headache that Tylenol couldn’t touch.

It doesn’t take long for him to spray an apartment as small as these ones are, so we waited until he was done so we could lock up and go. This gave him a chance to explain to things to me, which I could later explain to my mother.

The first part is good news.

This is the 4th time her apartment has been sprayed, and the first time he saw zero trace of any bed bugs.

Now the not so good news. They don’t go with just one clear month. They go with three.

Sort of.

She will have her apartment sprayed again next month, just in case anything got missed this time. If there are no signs of bed bugs for a second time, she will get another notice a month later, but he will not be coming in to spray again. He will just do a visual check. If there are still no signs, she is officially done!

So it all hinges on there not being any evidence of bed bugs next month.

At least we know it’s going to happen, because my mother is so frustrated with the whole thing, she stopped telling us about the letters.

Because he came so late, my mom has to stay away until at least 2am. Once things were locked up and we could leave, we went to a nearby park where she could sit and get some fresh air, which did wonders for her headache. She was too tired to do any of the things she wanted to do, or even go to a sit down restaurant for the late birthday dinner I was planning to treat her to. She decided to get a hotel room again, and that was it.

She didn’t have a bag packed, so she basically had the clothes on her back, and the contents of her walker.

Once she was checked in, I made sure she got her complimentary coffee and a couple of muffins to eat when she took her evening and morning pills. She keeps some in her purse at all times, just in case she happens to be out when she’s supposed to take her medications. I offered to get her anything else – even buy her a nightgown or something – but she said she was fine. She just wanted to take her meds and go to bed! She was so tired, she was struggling just to move around the hotel room, even through everything is close at hand.

I’ll be coming back tomorrow morning to help her check out and take her home. She insisted I don’t come too early, because she wants to sleep in! So I’ll time it to be there just before check out time.

Even my mother commented on how it felt like such a wasted day. Neither of us got anything useful accomplished. And there’s no way to get around that. The guy shows up when he shows up, depending on how many towns and buildings he was to do.

At least there is now a light at the end of the tunnel.

The Re-Farmer

Appreciation

Today I found myself heading out to the city, and didn’t get to my computer this evening. My usual morning routine on the computer, such as uploading photos, checking the trail cam files and writing a blog post, got completely skipped.

Imagine my surprise when I had a moment to log on and discovered a big spike in visits and views! To those of you popping by from City Steading Brews, welcome! Another welcome to all those who found their way here to check out my posts about doing things crab apples. It’s definitely the season for it! I hope what you’re finding is useful.

Normally, I post at least one photo with my blog posts, but today I hadn’t taken a single photo! Which is very unusual for me. 😁

So, I instead went back a few days and put this together for you to enjoy.

It has nothing at all to do with anything I did today, but it’s cute kittens, so who cares?

They absolutely loved it while I was raking up that pile of grass clippings – and made it a real challenge to not accidentally rake up a kitten, too!

With things working out for my daughter being able to pay the vet bill for Leyendecker, we no longer needed to delay our city trip to continue stocking up. Today is Labour Day weekend, but a lot of places were open for at least short hours. I was not going to do Costco yet, but was going to try one of the other wholesale places I sometimes go to – only do discover it was closed! I still went to the international grocery store that I planned on, making a quick stop at a nearby Dollarama, then hit a Superstore. This time of year, a lot of places have case lot sales that I took advantage of. More stuff for the pantry, as we work on the assumption that we will have at least two months this winter, stuck at home due to weather conditions.

A couple of years back, a daughter and I would make these trips and do all the shopping in one day. Since then, we’ve added a couple more regular stores to shop at, and have split things up into two, sometimes three, trips. Thankfully, gas prices have been slowly going down. We’re currently at 165.9 cents per litre locally, though I did see one place in the city that was at 157.9 It’s still way too high, though. I put $40 of gas in my tank on the way to the city, and it gave me just over a quarter tank. I’m saving the fill for when I get to Costco, where the price will be better.

So, aside from stopping at the gas station, I went to three different stores, with two of them right next to each other.

It still left me totally drained. It doesn’t seem to matter how much I pace myself, whether or not I had an energy drink, or took a break for lunch. These trips just leave me exhausted. Being around so many people sucks the energy right out of me.

How on earth did I manage to keep going, when we were still living in the city? I was so involved in things, too. I now realize I must have been running on fumes for years. My mother often goes on about how we need to get out and around people more. Which makes sense coming from her. My mother spent some 40+ years here on the farm, raising 5 kids, growing a huge garden, and doing all the things that comes with running a “subsistence farm”, as it was called back then. Mind you, I do remember quite a lot of visits from their friends in the city, and attending social events, so it’s not like they were hermits. Still, once my mom moved to where she is living now, she had a lot more social opportunities right in her building, never mind the stuff in walking distance for her. My mother is a social person.

I’m not.

She, of course, thinks I should be. She especially brings it up when she wants me to drive her around all over the place, and/or stay at her place for hours, and I point out I have things to do at home. That’s when I get told how I need to be around people! I am allowed to take a holiday every now and then!

She has no idea just how people’d out I still am. I’ve tried to tell her about all the various things I was involved in before we moved here – things which often included a lot of conflict – but it’s completely beyond her experience, so she doesn’t quite get it.

These trips to the city remind me just how much I am NOT a city person, even after all those decades off the farm. I’m not a people person. It’s not that I don’t like people. I just don’t like being physically around lots of them for too long.

It makes me appreciate being where we are now, that much more. Even if it means dealing with our vandal, or getting snowed in repeatedly, or all the vehicle troubles, or living in a house that needs a top to bottom renovation (but I’ll be happy with just a new roof!), and struggling to keep the garden alive, or cleaning up the place with all the working equipment gone before we got here…

It’s still better than what we left behind. We have quiet. We have space. There is so much less stress. And I love the work that I’m able to do here, even if I have to resort to fairly primitive means to get things done.

There’s a reason I haven’t changed my tag line after being here for almost 5 years.

Sometimes, you really do need to go back, to go forward.

The Re-Farmer

While I’m waiting…

Yesterday, I finished up a garden tour video I made, using my recently acquired software. I’m getting the hand of using it, and quite liking it. It has been a while since I fired it up, though, and there was an update waiting. I have no idea if that’s related or not, but when it came time to export and upload the video (which is does in succession), it saved the export file, but failed the upload. Which is fine. I could just do that manually.

It was incredibly slow to upload. So slow, I thought something must be wrong, and restarted it. When that didn’t work, and it still took forever, I finally had to shut down for the night.

Today, I made a trip into the city for our first monthly stock up shop. When I was finally able to settle in on the computer, I started uploading the file again.

It was just as bad. It shouldn’t take almost 2 hours to reach only 14%.

I ended up re-saving the video at a lower resolution. It’s almost half the file size now, but it’s still slow as every to upload. I’m at 51% right now, and it’s telling me it’ll take just under 3 hours to finish uploading.

I’ve uploaded large files before, without having this much trouble before. I’ll just have to leave it alone and let it do it’s thing. I meant to post the video today, but it’ll have to wait until tomorrow.

While I’m waiting for that to upload, here’s how the day went. 🙂

I was able to do almost all of our stock up shopping today. There are just a few things left to pick up later. I wasn’t able to get the spare sump pump I intended to. They were out of stock.

It was another day of sticker shock, too. Yikes! Some things may need to be dropped from the list this month. About the only “good” price I saw was when I got gas at Costco, where it was at 196.9 cents per litre, instead of the 208.9 cents per litre locally. The city was mostly 207.9 cents per litre.

I was able to get more of the 6′ bamboo stakes, in packs of six, for the garden at a better price than the last ones I go, so my splurge of the day was to get 4 packs instead of 2. I also found one package of trellis net of the same type we are using from last year. The problem is, I need 2 of them to finish both trellises, and there were no more to be found. Hopefully, I’ll find another one when we do our second city trip and go to different stores. If I can’t find any, I’ll just have to use twine.

We have a beef order made, which will tentatively be ready for pick up in a couple of days; I’m just waiting for confirmation on that, as they put the pack together. It’s their largest freezer pack on their regular orders, and they choose what’s in it. Since we’re going into summer, they like to put in more cuts suitable for grilling. I find I quite like not knowing what’s in the pack ahead of time. It’s like Christmas. 😀

On another note, while I was in the city, I got a message from my sister assuring me that my mother’s apartment was locked up after getting treated, so I didn’t need to check it on the way home. Which I’m extra glad for, because on the way home, I drove through my mother’s town and completely forgot about it. I do wonder how much of my mother’s stuff they had to put into the hallway before they could access where they needed to spray. Hopefully, the smell will have dissipated before my mother gets home tomorrow. She has become extremely sensitive to chemical smells.

On yet another note, we are thankfully staying dry enough that I should finally be able to finish mowing. We have extra reason to get the area by the fire pit done. We’re actually going to have company this weekend! We still haven’t worked out exactly when, but my husband’s brother and his family will be coming out. With my husband hardly getting out of the house at all anymore, they have seen each other only a couple of times in the 4 1/2 years we’ve been living here. We used to be able to get together regularly, but with my husband’s pain levels, he just can’t make the trip to the city for any length of time anymore, and their work schedules keep them from coming out here. It’s Canada Day weekend, though, so they have some extra time, for a change. 🙂

Ugh. In the time it took for me to write this, the upload has only increased to 58%, and it says there’s still another 2 1/2 hours before it’s done.

I’m going to leave it and go to bed. I’m sure I’ll be awakened by something during the night, and can check on it then!

I will have it posted as soon as I can. I hope you enjoy it!

The Re-Farmer

Messing things up

I ended up not heading over to my mother’s today. She had already started packing and bagging, so there was progress. She was feeling tired after church, though, and wanted to rest. So my sister and I will both head over tomorrow and get things done, in preparation for her apartment to be treated the next day.

I decided to start trying something out.

When we first started this blog on WordPress, we posted all sorts of photos without any thought to space limitations. Eventually, we figured out that there was a limit and started resizing them before uploading, but we still quickly ran out of storage space with the free account. We went ahead and paid for an upgrade. It did take longer, but we are starting to run low on space again. WP has changed their plans and the one we are on right now is no longer an option, and the next level up is way too expensive to justify, just so we can upload more pictures.

So I’ve been cutting back on how many pictures I upload – my apologies to those who have been coming here for the cat pictures! I’ve also started uploading resized photos to an online album to store the images, but WP still uploads them into my account’s media storage, so we’re still taking up more space with every photo.

The alternative is to go back to old posts and replace the original images with resized versions that take up less storage space.

I’ve finally started to do that.

It’s messing things up.

Oh, the posts are still working. I’ve figured out a way to just run through, post by post, removing and replacing images in a way that doesn’t have me losing track of which are done and which are not.

No, where things are being messed up is in the background stuff.

I’m starting in 2017, with our first blog posts. Which means finding the original images in our media storage, going through the posts, replacing the full size images from 2017 with resized ones, the deleting the original full size image from the account.

WP organizes files by the dates they are uploaded. Which means these resized images from 2017 are now the first images that are showing up in my media as new images, ahead of 2022 images. That will make it take longer to find more recent images, but there’s no way to sort by, say, file name. The original images have the dates as file names, and when we started resizing them, I continued to use dates in the file names as one of the ways to keep them organized. So now my media images are going to be all chronologically messed up.

On top of that, it’s messing up my stats. As I changed out the images, I have to view the posts in order to make sure they are still working. WP stats do not have the option of not counting my own visits and views. Which means that my stats for today are now artificially high.

What hasn’t happen is any reduction in the percentage of used data. It may well be because these old images aren’t as large and high resolution as more recent ones, after my phone was upgraded. I think where I will really see a difference is when I start resizing photos taken with the DSLR camera. Those are huge files. Still, considering how many images I resized, and how many full sized images I removed, I would expect to at least see at least some difference. WP’s percentage tracker goes to the first decimal point, and that hasn’t even changed. Even with re-uploading the smaller file size images, it’s hard to believe that all the larger original file images I removed still don’t make up a tenth of a percentage point! Especially since a couple of the original files were duplicated for some reason.

I think I’ll stop for today and continue the next time I have a bit of time to dedicate to it – probably about 3 days from now, at the earliest. :-/

I’m rather annoyed that all that time spent resizing images today has apparently made zero difference, though!

The Re-Farmer

A couple days break?

We had quite a lot of rain yesterday, with temperatures much cooler than forecast for the first day of summer. The cool was much appreciated! It was nice being able to open up more windows again.

The problem is how wet everything is. Even the new part basement now has water pooling in places. Unlike the old basement, we can’t sweep this into a drain or a sump pump cistern. All we can do is keep a fan on it, really.

We’re supposed to have a couple of days that are warmer and without rain. Hopefully, that will be enough to let the grass dry out enough that I can finish mowing the lawn tomorrow. No chance of being able to get it done today, even if I wasn’t going to be at my mother’s for her home care assessment appointment. After that, however, we’re looking at possible thunderstorms and more rain for several more days.

While doing my morning rounds, I saw a couple of the kittens under the cat’s house again. I’m glad to see them, after they got so frightened by the lawn mower. I caught a brief glimpse of the little calico’s face. Her one eye still seems gooby, but otherwise all right.

The garden plots seem to be holding out all right, though I noticed a lot of pole beans at the trellises seem to have lost their leaves. I can’t tell if it’s because they were eaten by something, or because they wilted and fell off from excess moisture. There are still lots of plants, though, so we should still be good.

I’m pretty sure one of the lilacs at the corner of the storage house has been totally drowned. The few leaves it managed to grow are gone. If it survives, I’ll be amazed. There are others that aren’t quite as bad, and I think they’ll make it.

The Kulli corn seems to finally be recovering from transplant shock, looking more green and actually growing. The bush beans growing with them are progressing nicely. The first planting of spinach and one type of lettuce are getting big enough we should be able to start harvesting leaves and thinning them out.

As much of a problem the excess rain is, after last year’s drought and having to water every day, twice a day, throughout the summer, I’m really happy with how things are growing right now.

Still, it’ll be nice to have a couple of days break from the rain!

The Re-Farmer