Author Topic: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report  (Read 2669 times)

Hopalong

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 13857
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #30 on: January 31, 2022, 02:40:43 PM »
Mine? Plumber came but can't snake it out until hard ice over (shallow) snow melts off my yard. He can't find or reach the cleanout. But I'm okay with slow flushing for now, knock wood. Gross, but I'll be in touch with him in a couple days to reschedule. Nice guy that knows his stuff, though dragging a 300-lb machine across snow isn't on at his age.

Cancelled cleaner AGAIN -- both unfortunate and a great relief. My house is a cluttered disaster so I welcome the delay. I can walk thru dust/dirt w/o distress, but decluttering surfaces enough for her to clean them is torture, after a few weeks not doing so well (anxiety wise, but that's for Mental Health thread). Feels better to take another week to get ready for her return. Right now can't use dishwasher, washing machine or shower, which will be notable in a few more days. For now will wash dishes in a pan, and throw the water outside. "Pits 'n bits" -- what a winter.

Pooch is fine and the crows are a bit more jovial; great optimism for that project!

Amber, I dunno how you juggle all that you juggle but it's really nice to read how steadily you plan, and prepare, and calendar, and keep your eyes way off the pebbles and on the horizon so your life with all its changes is still working, and from the sound of it, working well! All fingers/toes/hairs crossed the B. stuff is moving ahead.

I will be really happy to hear every update, because your mountain is a consoling and captivating space for my daydreams.

hugs
Hops
"That'll do, pig, that'll do."

lighter

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 8544
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #31 on: February 01, 2022, 05:01:19 AM »
Oh, drat. Hops...... what a mess to soldier through.  You're doing so well with it!

The pug puked in my bed at 5am and I was dead set on mictro cleaning every inch of bedding and the floor and the washer's running and the sink is set up to receive said pug for a good dog washing session when seems recovered.  Pug's nervously eyeing the towels under the kitchen sink as I write this.  Inside I'm shivering in anticipation for the work you have ahead of you

Lighter

sKePTiKal

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5342
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #32 on: February 01, 2022, 09:50:20 AM »
Temps are warming up for a few days Hops. Maybe that'll speed your plumbing fix along. I'm hoping my snow melts too - but it'll be mud season. Again.

I guess I'm glad I APPEAR to be calm - LOL. I do try to organize, have a seasonal work calendar in my head and pre-stage for things as much as possible. I'm not really quite "all that". I can have nights of racing brain, still have unrealistic expectations about some things - or fantasize, the whole list of irrational anxieties... I just am not as "stuck" there as I was, once upon a time. I think, that working through being widowed at my own speed, my own way - and facing life alone (at least for a couple years) was the worst possible disaster I could imagine happening, and I still kinda landed on my feet. Meeoooow. It was actually a rewarding journey and I think opened up a crack in my "idea bank" of what could be possible. The "why NOT?" energy has kinda taken over.

Success is never final, failure is never fatal.

Phyll

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 111
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #33 on: February 05, 2022, 12:00:59 AM »
I am getting caught up on your discussions of chickens, home heating, snow and discoveries of poor repairs!
We have 13 hens in a coop W built 3 years ago.  I love their eggs.  We had a rooster, but he was unceremoniously dispatched after he tore most of the feathers from our hens that first year.  Now when W enters the coop or the run several of the hens will stand at his feet, crouch down and squat until he picks them up or pets them.  Apparently, W is the Rooster!   :)
We are considering investing in an outdoor woodburning gassification unit to heat the house, garage, and water heater.  It seems they can save about 60% of annual heating costs, the wood mess would stay outside, it would provide longer burn times, reduce our carbon footprint and get a 26% tax break for the cost of the unit and installation cost.
Four years ago, W bought a 1948 Harry Ferguson tractor.  We decided it was time for a newer model. Last month we bought a 1970 White Oliver.  We use it with various implements on the 3 point hitch for snow removal, making and maintaining our walking trails, hauling dirt, dispensing fence, grading the driveway, pulling out root etc.
We had tons of snow in December, and it has been especially cold this January into February.  We are in the process of re-installing the Jodel wood stove on the sun porch.  It was improperly vented to the same flu from the living room on the first floor as the wood furnace in the basement.  We were getting a chimney stink when the wind blew a certain direction.  When we first moved here W hired a chimney cleaner to come and do a more thorough inspection.  We discovered the pipe was never installed all the way to the flu - it was discharging into the basement block wall ... amazing the house did not burn down or that people did not die from CO poisoning.  We have discovered many things that were not right, safe, or repaired poorly.  Always keeping us busy
Just sayin, I can relate to your life on the farm!

 

sKePTiKal

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5342
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #34 on: February 05, 2022, 08:41:08 AM »
Phyll - one of the trade-offs of that wood gasification strategy is that, like everything else, the cost of wood is going up. I have enough wooded land, that I can supply 3 wood stoves (and the occasional bonfire) out here... as long as we start to replant trees. We refuse to burn pine - which totally covers chimney pipes in creasote - so those are either used in permaculture or bonfires.

We're kinda at a resting plateau with projects out here. The kids will build a geodesic greenhouse this spring and mom is waiting to get Buck fixed up pain-wise and totally moved before endeavoring too much else. Roofer was here yesterday and he's going to order the steel so we can lock-in price against any unforeseen increases. Decreases will be deducted from my bill.

B & I are running out this morning to get two more bolts & washers - then Helga is ready to be inspected until I can get her re-registered as a farm use vehicle. It gives Hol something she's used to driving in the winter, since the Pontiac needs to be in the garage during the weather we're having - but Steve is still working on his Subaru commuter car.
Success is never final, failure is never fatal.

sKePTiKal

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5342
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #35 on: February 07, 2022, 10:49:54 AM »
Lazy Monday (or "second Sunday", as we call it around here). Buck left yesterday, after a month here. He's absolutely spoiled me, fixing things and doing the little things for me in appreciation of the little things I do for him - pretty equal give & take. We seem to have begun settling in and it's like we've done this for years. So far so good, anyway.

The house seemed really empty yesterday without B and all his man "stuff". I kept busy; stopped trying to find things to take my mind off the quiet... and dropped in on Hol & her friend. (S is working half the country away on a couple jobs; back this week.) So there was some girl-time had. Think that helped me re-adjust to being solo again.... for however long it is this time.

It could be a very short time; or the way the system is slowed down - take a month or more till he gets an appt to continue jumping through the hoops prior to seeing a surgeon and getting a date for the pump implant. And it's not just medical care slowed down...

the roofer will order the steel for my roof replacement now - because it may be several months before it's delivered. He figures on doing the work this summer. Maybe the silly contractor can finish the metal shop by then... Buck's already moving some of his heavy tools in there... but we really need the doors installed. Then, B's druthers is full speed ahead on getting everything he's bringing - moved. And I'm good with that, too.

I don't know where I'm going to put it, but B keeps asking permission to obtain a pet dragon. LOLOLOLOL. Or put 'gators in the pond. And he's been bringing me rocks he wants to keep, from his collection. Latest one is obsidian, quartz & emerald that he found somewhere. Some are geodes.

We didn't get anymore snow, from that last storm... and the days are starting to gradually warm. I'm feeling kinda antsy for spring. But it's too soon to start seeds, because we can't chance planting until May. I have a lot of soil enrichment to take care of this year... once the ground thaws and the mud dries up. And I need to get started on that, asap. I could maybe prep my tools too.
Success is never final, failure is never fatal.

sKePTiKal

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5342
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #36 on: February 09, 2022, 10:09:23 AM »
NOW... the time till Buck is here full-time is short.

He'll be back the end of Feb, for a surgeon consult on the 2nd. Garage doors for the shop & insulation are scheduled too. B has spent the past couple days getting all the bank & paperwork hoops to jump through when moving sorted out; a plan for switching things up here. He's going to try to get his hearing aids replaced - he swears he can hear a gnat fart with the current ones and background noise is so amplified he still has problems with hearing voices. LOL.

He makes me smile, he's so happy right now. I'm happy too - but BUSY.
Success is never final, failure is never fatal.

lighter

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 8544
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #37 on: February 09, 2022, 03:10:41 PM »
That's a cheerful update, Amber.

I notice you aren't mentioning B's ex and I hope that means he's not being bothered or harrassed by her.  I assume his dd will always be a road his ex uses to gain access to him, but hope the dd feels she can step out of that terrible position.  I hope she already has.

I'll uncross and recross everything for this next medical appointment for B. 

Things feel like they're moving very fast suddenly!

Lighter


Hopalong

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 13857
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #38 on: February 09, 2022, 07:27:23 PM »
Done and Dusted.

How could one possibly not be swooning, over the moon, deeply and unconditionally in love with a man who says something like, "I can hear a gnat fart" EVER?

I would be a goner.

I'm so happy he'll be with you FT soon, Amber.

Really SO happy for you!

hugs
Hops
"That'll do, pig, that'll do."

sKePTiKal

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5342
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #39 on: February 09, 2022, 07:40:44 PM »
Thanks Hops... hugs back atcha.

I'm feeling really good about this and my fingers are crossed the pain issues/infection can be finally managed decently.
Success is never final, failure is never fatal.

sKePTiKal

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5342
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #40 on: February 10, 2022, 09:57:39 AM »
Hops - after 3 years, we're kinda past the swoon-y stage of feelings. The R'ship/connection side of things still has those butterflies from time but most often I experience a deeper, calmer, more peaceful - "rightness". Others may see different things about us (and Hol is the most intrepid about making her perceptions known) but between he & I, things are more practical, pragmatic and simply going through life together.

Oh the Ex is still hanging around & being nosy Lighter. But bothering him less internally. I think he's finally decided he is long past feeling responsible for her current circumstances or her fate. Even though she created the whole situation to take advantage of what he could provide her - upon the current whim. I'm glad you brought that up - because I need to research some stuff about immigrants married with a green card. Just to get the ins & outs clearer in my head. Obviously, he was her sponsor. She won't naturalize and is dragging her feet while whining about wanting to go back "home" to live with her sister. Kinda nutsy, to me... but it explains a little of his "once burned, twice shy" characteristics that pop up from time to time (they don't move in and make a pest of themselves).

B is understandably impatient and irritated by any more - each & every - paperwork, bureaucratic, or just incompetent office help delay he encounters even in this new med system. He's been trying to fight his way through this for 5 years now. Then covid, which has made the situation worse in some ways. He wasn't doing too well attitude-wise about having any hope of resolving it when I butted into his self-talk back then. (Hol got it from somewhere ya know.)

The reality is he never had anyone advocate for him; stand with him as he tried to navigate all this; or care enough about how he felt about it all to listen to him grumble. He is a good bit ADD; and while he does have the ability to concentrate, focus, and stay on task... in those interactions with healthcare people he has so much at stake with outcomes that anxiety amplifies and enlarges every little thing to him. My role as shield maiden is to ask the question that flew out of his head, cover all the bases about how the "process" is going work (managing expectations), calendars, etc and keep him as calm as possible. Found out feeding him after a Dr. visit that hasn't gone well helps a lot.

Because the pain pump is a long-term "management" situation, involves narcotics (which invokes the whole opioid mess) even though it doesn't affect his brain directly (goes into spinal cord to soothe nerve endings)... taking a psych eval was part of the process. I didn't get asked to leave and I have to say the questionnaire wasn't exactly subtle. Not to mention how easily it could be gamed. (I used to write these kinds of things to collect info about my faculty's tech needs/wants.) B has already been assessed as not having an addictive personality. He's not a depressive. He's the furthest from suicidal as can be. And he's not even anti-social. This eval was the least messed up part of what he's been waiting for & going through as part of the process and we're a year into it now.

Going through something like this with him - before we were an "item", all throughout the beginning butterly stages of the relationship is a pretty interesting (and different) "getting to know you" gauntlet and not exactly romantic. But if there is a successful outcome, his quality of life becomes more pain-free than it's been and even if the pump only knocks it down by half - he will accept that. He's not the kind of person to sit around feeling sorry for himself. He'll go do what he can do, to keep part of his mind anyway - off obsessing on the pain. I've been able to see this obsession in real-time myself... and have some ability to interrupt that, shrink it down to size in the bigger picture; provide perspective. He has a willing apprentice now, in Hol, too. They've already done some things together.

So, we've kinda jumped past a lot of "new relationship" stuff. right to real life stuff - for now. And I think our age, and what we've both been through in our lives, has contributed this kind of "fast forward". There's no point in putting on any masks - we just went to warts & all. And still, there are enough fun romantic moments that come out of nowhere and cause many smiles. But it's the strong deep connection between us that's contributing to the visible speed of events now. We did all our "homework" the past 3 years. We balance each other making us more together - than apart.

Or so, today's words for trying to describe how this FEELS goes. I ain't much of a poet.

« Last Edit: February 10, 2022, 10:01:57 AM by sKePTiKal »
Success is never final, failure is never fatal.

lighter

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 8544
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #41 on: February 10, 2022, 10:33:33 AM »
I'm very happy to see you posting about feelings, Amber:) 

Feelings and needs.....
the fruits and flowers of intimate connection when we can state and ask for them. 
Poetry or no...... it's really heartwarming to read how things are going.

I'm so happy you and B are navigating the medical stuff well.  Learning how to calm and soothe B, with B learning to accept being soothed and comforted......
that's the stuff of safety and longevity in relationships: )

Lighter

Hopalong

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 13857
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #42 on: February 12, 2022, 07:14:48 PM »
Amber, thought you might find this as fascinating as I did. Really amazing. (It's a freebie, no subscription).

https://wapo.st/3LyI2km

hugs
Hops
"That'll do, pig, that'll do."

sKePTiKal

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5342
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #43 on: February 12, 2022, 08:45:26 PM »
I'm familiar with the neolithic sites in Orkney. Not really chasing after any theories... but just curious about what is supposed about those people and their culture.
Success is never final, failure is never fatal.

sKePTiKal

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5342
Re: 2022 Frozen Tundra Farm Report
« Reply #44 on: February 14, 2022, 09:27:03 AM »
Very quiet weekend here. It snowed again. Not very much... and its going to be 60-something later in the week, so I guess we're in the schizo phase of spring... LOL. Hol has company - so I actually got a peaceful quiet day to myself... with no one needing attention, no big project to work on. Whee! I did a little online shopping. More to do, too.

I'm still mentally composing the look/feel of my living room makeover. I found a rug I like, but after measuring again the size is just a teeny big too big. Everything has to be durable and easy to clean - with a man dragging man-dirt into the house, 2 more kitties coming... one outdoors, one indoors... and B's "stuff". He gets a shot of pain relief from the radiant woodstove... so we've been building fires upstairs instead of the smaller stove downstairs. Wood dirt is the WORST, and during the cold snap, I was cleaning on a daily basis.

Found a set of 5 herbal medicine books; each addresses a different area of health/body - there is even one on pain management/psychological issues - so I'm curious to see how in-depth the books are (supposedly includes dosing recommendations and describe strength of decoctions, infusions & tinctures). I took a quick dive into the certification onlne schools... and well, I'm self-taught in a lot of other subjects but I've bought very few actual reference books in recent years. So I thought I'd give these a shot. The next set will be the German Herbal references. Weirdly, I can read manuals and reference books; integrate - and then present in distilled fashion. Synthesizing the essential info, I guess.

I'm also starting to gather up the gardening essentials. It's almost time to start slow-growing herbs indoors, under lights. I have fertilizer ordered to be tilled into the garden... the traditional one's I used to spread twice a year at the first homestead, and some blood meal for the heirloom tomatoes. I can spread fertilizer, while it's still muddy... but it'll be late May/early June before I can work it into the soil. I'm going to need more seed pots - my old ones migrated to the Hut. But at least they're growing too - so we have redundant chances of getting a crop. Green house will get delivered middle of March. No idea how long that'll take to put up, but Hol assures me she and S are good at this kind of thing.

She finally has gutters on her garage; and the shop gutters are on. That just leaves garage doors & insulation in the shop. Doors are in; subcontractor has me on the schedule; just waiting now. After 2 winters with solar/batteries/generator backup... adding the garage electric into the system... her big rack of panels and chargers/inverters/batteries are pretty reliable. Road work is definitely on the agenda; along with an equipment shed, fence & coops at Hut pond for birds... when we get around to it. I'm going to plant a little differently this year, so we have things to can - get Hol up and running now that she's pretty much got her spaces dialed in. It was hard to find wide-mouth lids... but a friend in KY has cases on his shelf and sent me a dozen boxes. I've been seeing lids & rings - of all places in an upscale grocery over the mountain. I grab a couple boxes of those when I see them, and they're adding up. The jars have been more available & I stocked up again (third time in my life) pre-covid.

I'm gonna run out today and get a new faucet for the utility sink in studio garage (old one is leaking badly) - I need water for my seedlings down there. Hol got everything else plumbed back again. If y'all are looking for a good book on basic household DIY, Reader's Digest and Family Handyman magazines both published basic how-to books with good instructions & illustrations. Got mine on Amazon. I figure things out better reading rather than watching a youtube video; other people are different... and with a book on the shelf, one doesn't need to fret over losing bookmarks, or remembering what the vid was called.

Even with Buck around and claiming jobs like that for himself - I still want to do them; know HOW; and get some practice in. We're figuring that bit out. Many times, it's better to get out of his way & let him do it himself.

I know this SOUNDS like a lot going on - but day to day reality is nothing much is happening until it warms up and the ground thaws. And as far as my house makover stuff goes - what I brought from the beach has fit & served ME, pretty well... but now it needs to adapt again. I think I'm kinda waiting until ALL B's stuff is here before I commit to any new purchases, so mostly window shopping, measuring, visualizing... and thinking about letting things go that no longer serve: just take up space. I might MAKE some furniture; I have all the tools to do so... it's just going to require finally getting the barn, shop & garages organized.
Success is never final, failure is never fatal.