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De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021

Donuel 13 Jun 21 - 01:40 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 Jun 21 - 12:59 PM
Charmion 13 Jun 21 - 10:36 AM
Charmion 13 Jun 21 - 10:19 AM
Stilly River Sage 12 Jun 21 - 07:31 PM
Donuel 12 Jun 21 - 06:33 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 Jun 21 - 01:48 PM
Charmion 12 Jun 21 - 12:41 PM
Stilly River Sage 12 Jun 21 - 10:47 AM
Charmion 12 Jun 21 - 08:50 AM
Stilly River Sage 11 Jun 21 - 11:02 PM
Stilly River Sage 11 Jun 21 - 06:07 PM
Donuel 11 Jun 21 - 05:52 PM
Stilly River Sage 11 Jun 21 - 11:53 AM
Stilly River Sage 10 Jun 21 - 11:19 PM
Charmion 10 Jun 21 - 09:14 PM
Stilly River Sage 10 Jun 21 - 05:27 PM
Donuel 10 Jun 21 - 04:32 PM
Jon Freeman 10 Jun 21 - 02:14 PM
Jon Freeman 10 Jun 21 - 01:15 PM
Charmion 10 Jun 21 - 12:45 PM
Donuel 10 Jun 21 - 11:39 AM
Stilly River Sage 10 Jun 21 - 10:33 AM
Jon Freeman 10 Jun 21 - 08:02 AM
Stilly River Sage 09 Jun 21 - 09:19 PM
Stilly River Sage 09 Jun 21 - 11:57 AM
Jon Freeman 09 Jun 21 - 10:43 AM
Stilly River Sage 09 Jun 21 - 09:46 AM
Jon Freeman 09 Jun 21 - 06:40 AM
Dorothy Parshall 08 Jun 21 - 11:24 AM
Stilly River Sage 07 Jun 21 - 06:06 PM
Charmion 07 Jun 21 - 03:51 PM
Stilly River Sage 07 Jun 21 - 12:24 PM
Charmion 07 Jun 21 - 09:02 AM
Dorothy Parshall 06 Jun 21 - 04:56 PM
Stilly River Sage 06 Jun 21 - 11:27 AM
Charmion 05 Jun 21 - 11:10 AM
Stilly River Sage 05 Jun 21 - 10:56 AM
Charmion 04 Jun 21 - 05:23 PM
Stilly River Sage 04 Jun 21 - 12:17 PM
Stilly River Sage 03 Jun 21 - 10:41 PM
Stilly River Sage 03 Jun 21 - 10:51 AM
Charmion's brother Andrew 03 Jun 21 - 10:30 AM
Charmion 03 Jun 21 - 09:24 AM
Charmion's brother Andrew 03 Jun 21 - 08:57 AM
Charmion 02 Jun 21 - 09:39 PM
Stilly River Sage 02 Jun 21 - 11:14 AM
Charmion 01 Jun 21 - 06:26 PM
Stilly River Sage 31 May 21 - 03:07 PM
Charmion 31 May 21 - 01:49 PM
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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 13 Jun 21 - 01:40 PM

Well I didn't mow until 10AM but it is a whisper quiet electric and besides has headlamps. i recommend spray Dry Lube with teflon for all mowers for several reasons, clean up and lube.
Crawl spaces should not ever be built. If anyone has a notion to store anything in a crawl space don't do it! It will mold.
At our pre civil war farm I did some crawl space work under a newer part of the house.
Fish hooks! were the worst. Fiberglass came in second.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Jun 21 - 12:59 PM

These basement descriptions dovetail nicely with that BS: Who first lived in your house/pad ? thread. The house I remember best from my childhood is the one we moved to when I was about middle school aged, and I moved out of there after community college and heading to university. In thinking about it just yesterday I realized that were I to have to move back into that house, I'd feel trapped. It was distinctive in its looks, with a very thick steamed shingle roof meant to look like an English thatched cottage. The exterior was stucco. The walls were thick plaster and it had pretty wood floors, except in the back ground floor that was concrete topped with wall-to-wall carpet. It was the mustiest house I've ever lived in, built on a hillside weeping with small springs. French drains barely touched the problem. And my mother smoked like a chimney. Add all of that and you have an olfactory quagmire that made your clothes and hair smell bad if you visited. I moved out as soon as I could and never spent the night there if I could help it. I hope the new owner has resolved the musty smell.

The basement in that house was under about 3/4 of the house, with a crawlspace into the remaining section. There was wall of cabinets set up down there that had originally been in the kitchen, but for some reason relocated and a new set built upstairs. I think it's because the woman who built the house was tiny and the counters in the kitchen were all pretty low for our very tall family. The rest of the space was a sloping area with a couple of windows allowing in some light, and one corner we tried to turn into a sort of rec area, but it was never very comfortable. There were windows over a soapstone sink (the laundry had been down there until relocated into the mudroom next to the kitchen). The window over the sink looked into the two-car garage that had really interesting wooden doors that had to be pushed from one side to the other. We were disappointed when it was replaced with a regular old aluminum door that rolled up. There was a sundeck on top of the garage, but we didn't use it often. There was one time, probably in my mid-20s, when I spent the night at the house and Mom left for work and locked the door. She had replaced all of the locks (even the basement door into the garage) with double keyed locks and I couldn't get out of the house. I was on the verge of climbing out of a back window or jumping down from the back of the sundeck when my brother returned home and I could leave. And that was the last time I stayed there.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 13 Jun 21 - 10:36 AM

Five o'clock wake-up call -- at dawn this morning, it was Robins v Grackles in the driveway. What a racket.

The first lawn-mower kicked in at 0630. Today is Sunday. (Not that Sunday is any different from all the other Groundhog Days.)

Stratford is a very house-proud town, and lockdown made us particularly fussy about our gardens. Any time when it's not raining, somebody in the neighbourhood is firing up the mower, the weed-whacker or the hedge-trimmer.

About five o'clock this afternoon, when all the dogs are being walked and I'm on my porch with a beer, the Harley fan will embark on his daily promenade, all dressed up in studded leather so everybody can see just how cool he is. I don't think I've ever seen that bike go faster than about 40 kph.

On the whole, I think I prefer even the grackles.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 13 Jun 21 - 10:19 AM

The basement is the guts of a house, and when things go wrong down there it can get ugly.

In the basement of my present abode, about eight non-specialized receptacles and five light fixtures are wired on a single circuit. (Consistent with the National Building Code, the furnace, washer and dryer are independently wired into the breaker panel.) The electronic thermostat and switching technology of the gas-fired water heater is on that circuit. When any other high-demand gadget (such as an electric kettle) is running when the water heater kicks on, the circuit-breaker trips. We learned about this special feature when the the kitchen was under construction and we were living in the basement. With no stove for nearly two months, we had the microwave, the toaster oven, the espresso machine and the electric kettle all plugged in down there. It took me a week to figure out how to make breakfast without unpleasant interruptions.

A childhood basement can be a place of mystery. The hundred-year-old clapboard house where my family lived when I was born was built long before central heating was dreamed of, with a rubble foundation and a dirt floor in the cellar. The retro-fitted furnace lived down there, along with the coal bin, the oil tank and the sump pump. More than that I do not know, for we kids were forbidden to go down there -- probably because our Mum was afraid we would do something awful to the furnace and set fire to the house. Also, dirt floor.

When we moved to the city in 1964, the new house was a great, solid Edwardian pile with a stone foundation and at least ten feet of headroom in the cellar, which was dominated by the largest, blackest furnace I have ever seen. The space was divided into five rooms, one of which I was unaware of until 1981, when I cleaned the place so my Dad could sell it. My brother had a darkroom down there that rapidly became his personal bolt-hole. Except for that area and the furnace room, which also accommodated the laundry equipment and a toilet, the rest of the cellar was devoted to the stuff my mother accumulated and absolutely refused to relinquish.

By the time she died, in 1980, that cellar was packed from the floor to the joists with all manner of materials, from old appliances and a set of false beams from the rectory down the street (eight of them, all quarter-sawn oak) to shoeboxes full of door knobs, hinges, thread spools, and porcelain junction boxes from the days of knob-and-tube wiring. It took me a week of hard manual labour, including a full day with "two men with truck" who tried to quit on me at lunch-time, to empty it from room to room, wall to wall.

So ... yeah. No wonder I'm a neatnik today.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Jun 21 - 07:31 PM

Do your neighbors enjoy that 5am wakeup call?


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 12 Jun 21 - 06:33 PM

Mowing on a dry morning as early as 5AM is a pleasure.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Jun 21 - 01:48 PM

I enjoy watching This Old House, and am fascinated by the most complicated parts of any remodel/addon/etc. to do with the mechanical stuff. Getting down in the basement where the hot water and furnace and all are. When I was a kid had a pretty wonderful basement in the first house I remember living in, with the laundry at the bottom of the stairs and some rooms with doors on the other side of the space (in the autumn Mom hung up tomato plants so the fruits could ripen in one of those rooms, and used an indoor clothesline sometimes). On the south side of the house there were some long narrow (reminiscent of what you describe) rooms - one had my dad's tools and shop equipment, with a couple of very high windows to let light through from the next glass-fronted room that was parallel to it, under the back porch and extending along the width of the house. I now understand was a greenhouse area but I don't think my parents ever used it - I'd love to have something like that built in. (There was also a small building at the back of the lot where they used to keep chickens! I'd have loved to know the people who built that house and used those features!)

My next door neighbor is mowing my turf a little taller than I mowed last time, so I don't need to run out and mow myself for another day or two. (No fences or barriers, we just mow along the property line as demarked by the edge of the back yard fence and the light pole down at the curb.) The back really needs it, but the humidity is still high. I'm waiting for that point where the temperatures are hotter but the humidity drops, making work more comfortable. When you sweat and it evaporates, cooling you, versus right now if I mow I'll be drenched in sweat and just hot and sticky.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 12 Jun 21 - 12:41 PM

No, Stilly, it won’t.

The Glory Hole is a slice of the basement that was walled off about 20 years ago to hide the furnace, provide a small box room, and make a recreation space in the rest of the basement. It’s as long as the short side of the house but only about six feet wide, and it contains the furnace, the water heater, five sections of loaded IKEA shelving, and the wine. Two of the windows are in the Glory Hole.

Tony will do some of the installation work outside, but most of it, especially removing the the old windows, will happen inside. Tony’s a big guy — about six-two and 200 pounds, none of it fat — and he needs room to manipulate his tools and the framing materials as well as the window units themselves. Plus something to stand on, because the windows are at head level.

So the IKEA shelving has to come out, which means moving its contents first.

F*** my life.

But the basement will be soooo much better when the job is done.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Jun 21 - 10:47 AM

Charmion, was everything in that space accessible until now? The old "clear a path" option doesn't work?

I have soaker hoses stored in the greenhouse to set up in the garden (not used last year when I didn't have much of a garden after knee surgery). It has been several days since our last big rain, and now the trick is to flocculate the soil so everything doesn't rot in place when watering commences. Hydrogen peroxide or shampoo added to a watering can helps. I'm not sure how the science of it works, but some of the folks who participate in my gardening forum have been playing around with this stuff for years. I also have to ascertain the amount of Cookie-the-destructive-puppy damage to the hoses, and reassemble my watering timer and build a barrier to keep her from shredding the wires again.

My 60/40 cloth patio cover is a hot mess, all shredded, and I need to put up the tarp that usually hangs off the side to keep the sun from hitting my glass back door. I think I need to cover the entire thing with the same kind of loose-weave tarp that I use for the sunshade; I was going to do hard plastic, but that involves a great deal of ladder work.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 12 Jun 21 - 08:50 AM

While drinking beer in the downtown market square yesterday, I received a phone call from Tony, my favourite carpenter. My basement windows have finally arrived from the supplier, and he wants to install them next week.

Well.

That means moving most if not all the items stowed in the Glory Hole to the garage, along with the contents of the three-section IKEA shelving unit on the back wall of the rec room. I might also have to empty about half the wine storage.

An athletic job, to say the least, so I think I should recruit the in-laws. Fortunately, the basement is chilly on the hottest day.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Jun 21 - 11:02 PM

This evening I read through the sewing machine repair manual chapter to do with the adjustments on my machine. There are two or three possible adjustments and one possible repair (replacing parts this old could be difficult). Instead of tackling it tonight I will read through this chapter several times over the next few days, and give it time to sink in before I take screwdriver to machine. I'm also going to put the book into my tablet so I can enlarge the photos of the illustrations (they printed out rather flat with not as much detail as before).

It turns out that this book may have a more detailed origin the book is "a condensation of a home study course currently under consideration by the Job Corps for inclusion in their curriculum." Researching the Job Corps program is a huge longshot, but it would be interesting to know what was contained in that course. The introduction is typically sexist, talking about women who have machines they don't understand, and men learning to repair them.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Jun 21 - 06:07 PM

Goodwill and recycle bin run completed; I also found a few groceries that have been on the list for a while (had to go to a full-service grocery store for powdered milk and non-iodized salt). I also (finally!) found regular sized Ball canning lids and did what you're not supposed to do - I bought all eight boxes. I've been on fumes, hoping to find more because for the last 12 months or more none have been available and my supply had shrunk to less than a full box. I was prepared to pull out and use my various wide-mouth jars because those are the only lids available.

It's summer and I always have a jar of tea in the fridge to pour over ice; I'm going to have to shift the recipe. My quart jar with 2 green tea bags and a good-sized clump of lemon balm is delicious early in the day, but drinking it later in the day keeps me awake at night. So I'll switch to more lemon balm and one tea bag, see how that tastes. I'd rather use the herbs for the decaf tea than formulated black tea made to be decaf. That doesn't have any flavor, it's just colored water. It ranks up there with lite-mayonnaise and low-fat sour cream. Abominations.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 11 Jun 21 - 05:52 PM

Concurrent with the pandemic is the echo chamber of the less than successful and uneducated who bought into a vengeful psuedo victimhood by many well practiced con men. It would be wise to not arrest or direct malice upon them. Like the dillemma that Lincoln faced after the civil war, punishment only makes a percieved victimhood worse.

I can hang out with highly religious people, hippies or even the mentally ill but I can't even share a baseball game with an insurrectionist. Its probably best to forget who they are.
If the rich can own every single decade, the stupid should have at least one decade to call their own. But thats it.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Jun 21 - 11:53 AM

This morning I woke realizing I can't stand the state of the house. It's a combination of dust, clutter, and the humidity of summer. A clear and organized house simply feels cooler. More free room for air circulation (and it's also much easier to dust), so I've spent part of the morning picking up. I'm going to make a run to Goodwill this morning and that will clear several cubic feet.

I read this morning about the Emergent factory in Baltimore - given a huge responsibility to produce the Astra-Zenica and Johnson & Johnson vaccines - and they cross-contaminated them, rendering more than 100million vaccines unusable. People should be fired, people should be charged, and people should go to jail for such a careless operation. Lives will literally be lost without those vaccines. My house may be messy, but that house should be spotless. They got a lot of money from the Trump folks to be part of the bio-warfare supply chain, a sweetheart deal for Trump supporters. I guess they didn't think they'd actually have to do anything much to get to keep the cash. Someone is going to have to do a lot of decluttering and housework now.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Jun 21 - 11:19 PM

I ate a sandwich in a small shop on Tuesday for the first time in 16 months; there was only one other diner in there that time of day. I stopped by McDonald's at lunch today and they still have indoor dining cordoned off; I ate my burger in the SUV.

Tomorrow I'll be disturbing weeds and mulch in the parts of the new garden area that didn't get planted yet. I have a bunch of small Swiss chard to plant and an extra okra and some basil. Two squash seeds have just emerged in small pots and they'll go in the ground soon. And I have sweet potato starts also. A lot of moving of dirt and weeds.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 10 Jun 21 - 09:14 PM

At midnight tonight, Ontario moves out of lockdown and into the first phase of reopening. No haircuts yet, but patio dining is allowed.

So le tout Stratford will go out for lunch. Including me.

Woot! Woot!

(Is that still a thing?)


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Jun 21 - 05:27 PM

I have a friend who has bamboo in his back yard. He talks about keeping it under control by going out every year and using a long narrow "sharp shooter" shovel to slice down into the tubers or runners or whatever the rhizome roots are called that let it spread.

This is the time of year to shift my sleeping schedule so I can get up earlier in the morning for yard work. It's too hot to do much from midday on. I may mow the back for a while after the worst of the heat has passed and before the mosquitoes are out. It sometimes takes a couple of days to finish one of the yards when it's really hot.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 10 Jun 21 - 04:32 PM

All of May goes to eradicaton of new bamboo. A good kick will knock over a new tender sprout thats growing an astonishing 2 meters a day but I have loppers than can bring down 2 inch thick mature bamboo. I use the bamboo to support the roof of the car port. They also make good 15 m. teepee poles. Asian neighbors pick them and say the sprouts are good to eat but I haven't tried them. An axe and sledgehammer is required to get rid of a stubborn mature stump. ugh


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 10 Jun 21 - 02:14 PM

On loppers, we got a big telescopic ratcheting one when I was thinking of clearing behind the pigsties. I suppose in one way, needing 3 or 4 pulls to cut can be a pain but, on the other, they made light work of getting through elder over 1" in diameter - something I'd have really struggled with otherwise.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 10 Jun 21 - 01:15 PM

I brought a tiny bit of lilac (there is a small bush, I think mum must have planted, in the field) in earlier this week and shoved it in a small earthenware pot in the hall. I also picked a couple of daises, forget-me-nots and scarlet pimpernel and stuffed them in their own similar sized pots. I don't suppose they will last long but mum quite likes my "floral arrangement".


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 10 Jun 21 - 12:45 PM

Today I cut down the dwarf purple lilac in the back yard. The enormous pink lilac beside the garage is quite enough for one small suburban property, and I’d rather let the lavender bush expand into that space.

It’s amazing what can be done with a pair of really big loppers once you get started.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Donuel
Date: 10 Jun 21 - 11:39 AM

For tropical rain of inches per hour, today I placed hundreds of lbs of sand bags to divert an impromtu stream. Along with 25 bags of colored mulch that I put around the house and front fence, I am prepared to tackle the pool cover removal and related jobs. Trimmers are tricky manicuring where grass meets concrete so I will probably hire out the 700 feet of trimming. For a couple years I have used a trimmer to carve a maze in the grass.https://www.theedkins.co.uk/jo/maze/design/index.htm



.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Jun 21 - 10:33 AM

This trimmer is heavier than the last couple I've used, but it also has a more powerful motor. And after using it for an hour I realized I could adjust the handle position and it felt much better. (Default was set for a much taller user.)

The humidity, leftover from weeks of rain, is pretty awful, but the daytime temperatures aren't so high that the air conditioner runs enough to remove the moisture in the house. I'm going to be running it a few degrees lower than usual before bed, then adjusting it back to a higher setting and use the ceiling fan. (I have a long microfiber duster that this year I used on the fans all through the house, so they're good to go without dropping dusty specks.) Strategies for sleeping.

Must find my gym locker lock combination and refresh my memory.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 10 Jun 21 - 08:02 AM

It can be amazing how quickly grass (and at least here other things including cow parsley, hogweed and thistles) can grow when condition are right. It's not come to this but I've worried about times when I've been out of action and the grass is growing. The next step would be running the trimmer up the track. Doable (within reason with what I have) but more work than regularly running the mower along it.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Jun 21 - 09:19 PM

The grass outside was so tall and moist that it looks more like I used a scythe on it instead of a mower. I took my time using the weed whacker to edge along the driveway and side of the garden and part of the front yard. Not wanting to run it until the motor overheated I came in periodically to do office work. I mowed before the mosquitoes were too much around and last thing I took out some mosquito dunks and broke them in to pieces to drop in bird baths, the saucers under potted plants, etc.

For tomorrow I'll go through my various pairs of yoga pants and decide what fits best (thank dog for spandex!) and head to the gym for a while after I do some museum volunteer work. In choosing an audio book to take along I decided to follow up a reference I had to look up while reading the last Strike novel. At one point there is a conversation about Morlocks - all of this time and I have never read H.G. Wells' The Time Machine. She also references Anna Karenina and Spencer's The Fairy Queen, and there is no way I'm going to reread Karenina or start the other, but I am interested in Wells. With Tolstoy, once is more than enough.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Jun 21 - 11:57 AM

I have a hard time keeping my gas trimmer running; the ethanol gasoline here eats up the fuel lines after a year or two and I need to keep replacing those. The last time I tried to replace the silicone fuel pump bubble thing I found I didn't have the correct size. That one has a robust heavier line and I like using it when I get it running.

I'll be using that new pair of safety glasses (that have a bifocal feature added) for my trimming today. If I care for them (avoid scratches when stashing in my gardening apron, etc.) they may be a nice gardening upgrade.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 09 Jun 21 - 10:43 AM

I believe it is nice, SRS, though I've never been there.

Strimmer line seems to last me a good while with the bits I do but I've got most of the battery one I broke as spares and have its spool wound up and ready for use. I bought a complete spare head for the petrol one. In this case, the spools are quite different and use different lines. As well as the makers one, the petrol one would probably take this Oregon one and similar. Replacing the other would need something designed for it.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Jun 21 - 09:46 AM

That sounds like a pretty area, Jon, where your father was stationed. I pulled up Google Earth and found a 360o photo to show me the dunes along the beach.

I'm glad you were able to find some books, Dorothy! I keep a shelf of old mysteries in my guest room for the couple of friends who are always starting or finishing a book when they arrive, and always read before bed.

Today is yard day. I was able to pick up the trimmer spools and find they may be the exact size as the ones I already had for the last electric trimmer; I'll compare and see if I can use all of them for this new one. The direction the spools are refilled is different though - upper and lower spool channels go the same direction on these, they were alternating on the old trimmer. Anyway, first thing is to trim down around the driveway and garden, then get out the 10% vinegar, mix in a little d-limonene (orange oil) and use it to spray down some weeds (an organic formula).

I'm going to start going to the gym again; I need to re-memorize my combination padlock numbers.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 09 Jun 21 - 06:40 AM

My gardening hasn’t gone as well as I’d hoped. I hadn’t realised but the Swiss chard plug plants I bought were meant to be potted on before being planted out. What I’ve got doesn’t look very well but there are new green leaves starting on some plants so there is still hope. A couple of hanging basket tomatoes look ok but my other few outside ones are struggling. I think I’ll blame the May weather and having to make a decision with plants getting straggly indoors more than me for that. I’ve lost a row of French climbing beans and I don’t know why. Some replacements are on order.

I’m very annoyed with Suttons and my clubroot resistant brassica collection. The plants, which I potted on yesterday and may yet pick up, arrived in poor condition. Not only that, they couldn’t be bothered labelling which plants are which. I’m not planting (and don’t have space for) all 22 here but had hoped to sort out my own subset and give the others away. I can’t tell which are cabbage, callabrese, sprouts or cauliflower.

On a brighter note, greenhouse stuff, potatoes, leeks, lettuce, courgettes are looking fine.

I’ve got a fly screen for the patio door coming today (dad wants the door open in this warm spell and mum is getting bothered about possibilities of bugs and birds getting in…) so, depending on when it comes, I might try to fit that later. I’m not sure what that will involve but I’m reluctant to drill and screw into the UPVC frame. Perhaps I’ll see a better way with a bracket, perhaps not… One thing there is that is by any remote chance I could picture a simple (it would need to be simple..) bracket to help, I could possibly draw it and print it.

We’re having more visitors this week, I think just for an afternoon and the only thing I’ve been asked to do for it is to make a chocolate sponge cake. Even though we have all had our second jabs here, I’m not sure I’m comfortable with people calling from away yet. There again, we don’t see many people and it will probably be nice for my parents. I think they’ve known one another since the 1950s, starting with dad and Ray both being stationed at RAF Pembrey for National Service.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 08 Jun 21 - 11:24 AM

Beaver:

Taking a break this am. Hoping for rain but did a load of laundry and hung it out just now. So it might get wet... A re-rinse won't hurt - good country rain. And desperately needed. Rained enough yesterday and last night to dampen the surfaces. Still waiting for turtles to nest!

Started work at 7:30 am yesterday, until about 11, then a short nap, then more until about 5. Needed a book! Tried to reach a friend to no avail. Desperately went to the drug store - thrift shops and book store closed in lockdown. The Drug store books started at $8 EACH! $24 for anything interesting - a book that would take me 2-3 days to read! Went home.

Phoned Carol, who has twice helped me get my vaccine arranged - 2nd on Thurs!!! "When all else fails, call Carol!" She checked and phoned back; had some on way to thrift shop; I could come over... I went and we had a nice visit on their deck by the lake. Her husband joined us. I talked their ears off and thought, later, of some more interesting things we could have discussed. John was interested in my new car; He helped me a couple times with the old one! And helped me find the wonderfully handy Dan.

Two bags of books and a number of good to possibly. Started with a translation of a Danish book, thinking I would reject it but found it interesting; I has never occurred to me that people actually live in Greenland, and move to Denmark... Smilla's Sense of Snow by Peter Hoeg is a murder mystery which so far appears to be based on her fine understanding of snow - foot prints, and her fascination with Euclids Elements! Intriguing!

So, my break: Six plates drying to trim, other items trimmed and drying, and others drying to trim. My idea of throwing another batch hit the wall this am. Still have done no glazing of the large quantity awaiting - in the wood shed.

So I washed my hair and did laundry and went on line and discovered our area may come out of lockdown on Friday so Pat can re-open the shop, so I better glaze and fire so she has some new pottery stock - today! It is not so deadly hot; I shall finish my break and get on with it. she says with hope of re-surfacing energy!

AS I scrolled through emails, I realized the break is going to take longer... Maybe back to bed for a while... A real rain might help...

I de-cluttered a number of aloe vera and spider plants by taking them to the local horticultural society plant sale!

Oh darn, the toilet is leaking around the bottom!!!!!! I going back to bed.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Jun 21 - 06:06 PM

Except for being too old, Robbie Coltrane (who is even heavier than Strike) kind of fills the bill. Size and presence. I was looking through IMDB for character actors - just a mental game - when Adam Baldwin plays heavies or bad guys, he really has that hulking presence. For someone like him, add darker hair and gaining a few pounds would come pretty close. (At one point in the most recent novel he named his weight as 16 stone, it comes out about 225 lbs. He isn't Nero Wolfe.) I'm thinking in particular of a guest appearance Baldwin did on a couple of episodes of Castle.

Oh, well. They're interesting, well-developed characters with the flaws in plain sight. The Scottish sub-contractor Sam Barclay really cracks me up. I had to look up the spellings on character names because I listened to the audio book, I didn't see them written. Una in my head versus Oonagh on the page.

After raining much of today, the sun is out and my new glasses finally arrived. It took a very little time to adjust back to the bifocal placement, and it feels much more normal walking around and looking at things without putting on and removing the readers. I pulled a half-dozen pairs of my old glasses to donate over at the optometrists office where I have taken old glasses in the past. None of them would be helpful if something happened to this new pair.

I decided against making my convoluted shopping run now because it's just about rush hour; I can do some of this later before stores close. For several days I put off running around because I wanted to just walk out the door with regular glasses, not have a mask around my neck and the glasses loop around my neck and the spare sunglasses in my pack (I have a slip-on glasses from the previous pair that will work since it's the same frame.) In the past at the optometrist's office I usually ended up choosing new frames because they didn't have the same frames from before that I liked, but so far Zenni has let me use the same favorite frames three times.

There is a smallish dog sitting at my elbow emoting loudly - I think this is the "we haven't gone for a walk in a while" complaint that I will respond to closer to their dinner time. A walk and then dinner is a good combination and we can all use the exercise.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 07 Jun 21 - 03:51 PM

Knowing soldiers as I do, I have a very clear mental picture of Cormoran Strike: large and lumpy, and massive in combat clothing and body armour. I doubt there's an actor working today with that body type, or the bulky muscle that comes from training for deployment and extensive soldiering outside the wire.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 07 Jun 21 - 12:24 PM

I wasn't sure what time it was when I woke today - heavy overcast and thunderstorms have it so dark the porch lights came on. Taking trash to the curb was a wet operation (I had to go twice because I forgot to empty the vacuum for the first trip out).

I finished binge-reading the most recent of the Robert Galbraith/Cormoran Strike mysteries. They're very entertaining, but there is a lot of talking and I imagine they're not for everyone (though they seem to be bestsellers). In the UK they have televised version of them, but I won't be watching. In particular, the male actor they selected is a lightweight compared to the character Strike in the novels. Not tall enough, burly enough, or heavy enough. Since appearance is such a feature of this character (a disabled army veteran, having lost a lower-leg from an IED) I think I'll pass. I'd rather have the version in my head than the BBC or whoever produced it version.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 07 Jun 21 - 09:02 AM

Stonking heat in Stratford yesterday; a bit better today, according to Environment Canada. I'll believe it when I see it. The Perth County summer is well and truly under way.

The lilacs are still blooming, and their heady scent will pervade the neighbourhood until the next upwind pig farmer power-washes his barn. Folks are entertaining in their back yards (five people allowed!) and strolling the riverbanks in packs. Ice cream queues snake down the street. We still have no visitors, so the locals are enjoying amenities the tourists normally crowd us out of. Likewise, there's plenty of parking.

I'll know we're back to the pre-COVID status quo when out-of-town cars again jam the space currently occupied by restaurant patios, and townies return to griping about finding nowhere to park near the pub and the post office.

After my prolonged orgy of paper-shredding, I have no desire to do anything resembling work once the carpet cleaners have taken away the pissed-on rugs. I shall probably spend the afternoon on Zoom with Joe Offer and the Mudcat singaround, which has reached its first anniversary.

I made whiskey sours last night. My lemon produced enough juice for two drinks, so I shook 'em up and poured one serving into a cocktail glass and the other into a small Mason jar that went into the fridge for future reference.

Even five years ago I would have drunk both. Moderation snuck up on me when I wasn't looking.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 06 Jun 21 - 04:56 PM

BEAVER!!:

Time flies when... So I read through the posts since my last one and am overwhelmed and enthralled- by the amount of papers that need shredding, by the gimmicks of strange and mysterious ... I have no idea. Living off the grid for 15 years and planning to live off for the previous years, I avoided all things electrical for the most part. You guys are talking a foreign language. I do have 3 blenders - all from thrift shops, all in good working order, rarely used now. Life has been simplified to - I don't cook much, almost never bake, If it takes more then 15 minutes...

Two books of ?    I really am starting to lose words - getting disconcerting. Oh yeah, passwords. One sheet of paper folded in half and copied so I have a copy in each of strategic places. Have misplaced my Air Miles card and they want the number and my last two addresses. They can send me an email advertising some... Why can't they find me in their system??? I don't remember how long I have had it or what address I used... They also want a picture of my driver's license with certain things blacked out... I cannot figure that out either... It has actually earned a bit for me in spite of the paucity of my purchases. I will re-visit later.

But I did get here on Tuesday as planned. Turned on the already loaded kiln, only to have it quit, sometime before 9 pm; put in new fuses (I thought), still did not work. Oh well. Texted neighbour re cutting the jungle. He arrived with multiple devices before 9 am. YAY!

Exhausted as usual but did errands on Weds, visited friends in their yard. Talked their ears off and mentioned my kiln problem. Michael informed me he is an electrician and once worked in a pottery studio. He said he would come on Friday afternoon. He did. He showed me how to use that meter in the K drawer to see if a fuse was any good. (one was not- why was it in the box...?) Did the firing on Saturday, Unloaded on Sunday, waxed bottoms and everything is out in the wood shed as it is too hot to work. That's today! I did throw two plates for Erica and a few smaller items and readied clay for more plates and... Also today. Now it is 85 in the studio. The plates are drying!! Cooked a batch of rhubarb, will freeze it and take it back for R. (Do not like it.)

I have been getting some clearing up done in house and studio and lots of weeding, visit with Sue(next door neighbour) in the screen house on Friday. Took pots to shop and picked up my earnings. Arranged an earlier second shot - on 10 June!! I am staying until 19th then going back to be there for R as he has his second on 24th. Les is visiting me the afternoon of my shot and I asked to check on me on the next day. I think I will arrange to text her "And if you don't hear from me, maybe you could check".

Have eaten too much, maybe due to exhaustion. Read an incredible Autobiography on line, SRS: You might enjoy: https://www.harlanhouse.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/2019%20HHBK-FINAL.pdf

no blue clicky - my brain cannot deal with any more tech stuff.

Great pics of amazing pots and a story full of - well, "things happen..." R was enthralled.

Harlan is a world class potter with attitude. I took a week long course from him years ago and ... "a Zen potter"... I learned I would never do porcelain but it was a great week. "We were saving for a frig when we met this puppy... The frig still works." He brought the Akita to class.

Weeding is very bad for my shoulder which I need for potting... I was happy potting this am and happy that I managed to throw the two plates easily. I need bats to do plates and I seem to have left a couple at Dupont - brought what I thought but wrong ones. So I shall have to throw two, wait for them to be dry enough ... Tomorrow...

Time for a salad. 77 in the house. OK as long as I don't move much.

I added your link, Dorothy. :) ---mudelf


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Jun 21 - 11:27 AM

The investment company playing Big Brother - definitely an organization to extricate yourself from asap.

The only way I would burn here is with the closed burning barrel; people talk about burning papers in their fireplaces, but laying papers in doesn't work well, it isn't safe. There used to be a fireplace insert called the "Elizabeth burner" (as seen on TV) that had maybe a dozen tall cast iron upright dividers so papers could be slid in between each upright. Think of the bulk of a fully-loaded Sunday New York Times in each crevice. The effect was that air got in to keep it burning for about an hour and they burned consistently in that vertical position but there weren't ashes and embers flying up the chimney.

I have two shredders; tucked behind the paper recycling basket in the kitchen is a small crosscut one (three sheets at a time) and the small lengths of mangled paper fill up the bin fairly quickly. In the office, for things I want to shred but have less critical content, they go into the larger capacity straight shredder. (The x-cut is in the kitchen because that's where I open the mail, and I decide right away what kind of shredding is called for.)

I have several small antique Persian carpets that are kept in a room the dogs aren't allowed into often (they're supervised if they're in there). When I had cats that was even more the case.

Today will include a run to the Goodwill donation center since I have to go by the nearby post office. I ordered some re-fillable replacement trimmer spools and after distinguishing my billing from my house shipping address, the inattentive company sent it to the post office (if you're lucky, this involves a key in the PO Box and picking up the item in the parcel cabinets; if not, it means queueing during business hours to have one of the staff make the long walk to someplace out of sight and appear five minutes later with your parcel.) I'll make that part of an errand loop that includes a grocery store and Tractor Supply for dog food.

Humid as hell today, so while mowing is necessary, it may not happen (or only a part of the yard.)


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 05 Jun 21 - 11:10 AM

Isobel deigned to share the lap with Watson this morning. Crisis over.

Except, of course, for cleaning two Oriental rugs (the other casualty is a small red Turkmen from Kabul), and paying for the whole adventure. Watson should return to the cat hospital in three weeks for another urine sample to find out whether the special diet is doing the job. Rinse and repeat (probably literally).

Meanwhile, in other news, I finally replaced the cross-cut shredder that died about a year after we moved to Stratford. I took another look at the bylaw on open fires and realized that burning the tightly packed contents of at least two more banker's boxes would definitely attract official attention, and not in a good way. So back I went to the Staples website.

The instructions that came with this machine tell me what I did to kill its predecessor, which was not accompanied by a users' manual. Maximum 16 pages at a time, and no more than 20 minutes of shredding before letting the machine cool for 30 minutes. Now I wonder how our first shredder lasted as long as it did.

The investment broker sent a clutch of documents for me to sign. Can it be ... ? Finally, after eight months of nagging, is it possible ... ? But the investment company's delay means that Edmund's estate can't be finally closed and settled until the 2021 income tax returns are completed and assessed.

That sucks.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Jun 21 - 10:56 AM

The time I tried to merge outside dogs with indoor cats, my pitbull Cinnamon tried to play with the calico. We heard a ruckus in the bedroom where Cinnamon had Clementine by the leg (not a bite, she caught her gently) - but Clementine turned and bit the dog so hard she broke her own jaw. Two vet visits, for the injured cat and the dog needed antibiotics for the cat bite. After the cat came home, she smelled so much like the vet that a tussle with the other cat happened and one of them ended up with a bite that abscessed on the chest. I was pouring hundreds of dollars into the vet's bank accounts at xmas and decided to leave the dogs sleeping in the garage at night and in yard or garage by day. After the last cat passed away I didn't get any more, so the dogs could come in the house.

More. Rain. Today. I can't effing believe it. We've literally gone weeks with rain almost every day. I live in a rain prairie (since there isn't much of a forest here.)

Anxiously awaiting the delivery by mail of my new Zenni glasses. I'm tired of this on-again-off-again reading glasses for close work. I think I'll report more progress on projects around here once I am back to moving around through space all day with all of my vision clear. The cataract surgery did a great thing for distance vision and such, but we spend a lot of time looking at things up close, as I have been very aware since the second eye was fixed.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 04 Jun 21 - 05:23 PM

Days after Watson came home from overnighting with the vet, Isobel is still treating him like a stranger. Arched back, bottle-brush tail, hissing and swearing — she’s clearly convinced that this creature is not her brother.

Sigh.

They are both eating the special prescription diet with every evidence of enthusiasm, so at least that part is going okay.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 04 Jun 21 - 12:17 PM

The back yard was mostly mowed (I missed the edge strip behind the garage) but the front yard, that I hoped to mow this morning, has been rained on for a couple of hours so far this morning. Maybe mow tomorrow afternoon if this ends now.

The office desk is stacked with papers, things that need attention. I've had a busy week and now a few quiet days may see me getting caught up. Yesterday evening I went to a party with other museum volunteers, and took a batch of my homemade yeast dinner rolls. They had a large honey-baked ham (a US brand, not sure if it's regional, good spiral cut bone-in hams) that went nicely with the rolls. Or vice-versa. I didn't leave any here at home for me, so I'll make another batch today then share a few and freeze the rest. It's warm here but we're not yet into the weather when cooking becomes a ponderous chore.

Activities to address this month include the above-mentioned fence and pruning, I have a 10-day cat-sitting gig that I can use as a springboard for other activities (it puts me close enough to that gym I was thinking about rejoining after COVID to make multiple trips up there during that time). And eBay. There's a pent-up supply of things to list there.

As a special annoying bonus, I have a limited amount of time to re-do my income taxes and file a protest with their decision to keep most of my refund. The "adjustment" they made was a mistake, suggesting I was changing my income level to take credit for alimony payments. Now that's totally out of the blue and clearly a human error.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Jun 21 - 10:41 PM

My insurance company is offering a targeted exercise and PT program through remote devices and I've signed up for the knee and hip exercises. As the thyroid adjustment makes everything feel better when it moves, I now need to conquer the bursitis and strengthen the non-surgery knee. My hands and joints aren't stiff like they were before the thyroid, so now I can comfortably start exercising.

Today was busy but tomorrow I'll be home to finish mowing the lawn - this time tackling the front. And the last two veggie beds. We have a long growing season here, so it isn't late, but it could have been going quite a while ago.

It is four weeks until my street's quarterly bulky waste pickup, so I need to use this time to finish some of the fence work (old slats go down to the curb) and cut a bunch of the privet growing in the back yard and lug that out to the front (it's an invasive shrub here and is mixed into the trees growing above the creek beyond my back fence). The yard work is good exercise, but in a general way. Perhaps between the two activities I'll whittle off some weight.

Lilyfestre posted progress photos on Facebook this week and is showing excellent progress in her health goals. That's great inspiration!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Jun 21 - 10:51 AM

Of course it's there - I just always saw "Charmion's brother" and stopped reading at that. :) Thank you, Andrew!

It is entirely possible to have days jam-packed full of stuff to do, even if you're retired. Today is one of those. I have a batch of my famous dinner rolls rising (I season them with granulated garlic and dried oregano, and use olive oil instead of shortening) while I prepare for three events and one change of clothes. Haircut, museum class, museum class party (with rolls). In between, return library book, stop by Halal grocery store. By having less time I end up doing more because I have to prioritize and overlap (I can do several other things while the rolls rise and then bake. When I have all day long, well, sometimes things don't get done. Mañana.

This is my first event since anything in early 2020; I don't know anyone so it won't be as exciting as a party of friends and family, but I'll take it. We've come a long way since we met early this year, pre-vaccines, as a family for our xmas holiday at a fast food (Panda Express) restaurant equidistant from our homes, ate our takeout in our cars, then hopped in and out of our vehicles to do the gift exchange in the open air, all the while wearing masks. I'll still have my mask today, but to be indoors with other people will be a second (since museum class today is our first together after months of Zoom).


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion's brother Andrew
Date: 03 Jun 21 - 10:30 AM

... CCM and Sprocket, Handlebar (no grip)


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 03 Jun 21 - 09:24 AM

BA, CD, RSVP and Bar, VD and Scar … ;-)


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion's brother Andrew
Date: 03 Jun 21 - 08:57 AM

Stilly, my familiar name is right there in the "From" line.

Major (retired) Andrew Bartholomew Chaplin, CD, BA
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
:)


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 02 Jun 21 - 09:39 PM

Stilly, the company is called Thunderworks, and the product in question is ThunderShirt (note fancy capitalization).

Their website is www.thundershirt.com


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Jun 21 - 11:14 AM

Has anyone else ever noticed how difficult it is to put on socks and shoes when there are dogs in the room? They see your bending over or exposed foot as an invitation to schmooze. My socks and tie-up shoes are for yard work today (I started mowing the back yesterday, wearing flats, just because I wanted to get a start on the tall grass, but they aren't made for that kind of work.) This morning I heard a mower running in the neighborhood but I'm waiting for the dew to dry, it is such a gooshy job otherwise.

I stepped on the scale this morning - I need to work on weight loss now that I've been on synthyroid for a month. This morning's numbers reveal that the ice cream and chocolate plan doesn't contribute to that goal. The mowing and dog-walking activities might help.

Good catch on the cat pee problem source. You'll both be more comfortable as the food works to bring that under control. I need to pull up Charmion's Brother's link to the thunder shirt (I did some research - and does Charmion's Brother have a regular name as well as that moniker? Thank you!) and see if I can offer Pepper some extra reassurance when it comes to thunderstorms. They're reasonably priced and offer a good return policy. What's not to love?

I made the final corrections to the sewing machine manual, OCR and printing a copy for the sewing room. I need to get a good set of small screwdrivers to keep in there. I have lots of oddball tools, but one of the guys on YouTube who repairs machines said he made a point of getting a good set of what I think are stainless steel or high-carbon tools to avoid stripping screws and such. I'll look at his video again before I head over to Lowe's.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 01 Jun 21 - 06:26 PM

It seems that, as aging tomcats are wont to do, Watson has developed struvite crystalluria. The vet says I caught it early enough that it can be treated with a special diet that is, of course, not cheap.

No kidney stones, which tend to be fatal in cats, and no infection. Grateful for small mercies, me. The vet’s bill was not small, but neither was it as bad as I feared it might be.

I hoofed over to my fiddler friend’s house this morning and we played tunes for an hour and a half in her garden. Later in the afternoon, once Watson was resettled at home, I took a trot around the neighbourhood, checking out the annual explosion of lilac blossom. According to my Fitbit, I logged more than five miles today, and my wonky foot DOES NOT HURT!

So, all in all, a good day.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 31 May 21 - 03:07 PM

Cat pee has featured in my last two pet-sitting commissions. In the first place I think it's mostly one cat acting out against all of the medications in his daily routine. I failed miserably at finding all of the places where that cat managed to spray and piddle, making the assignment more difficult than usual (and where only one of the three cats is willing to be picked up, let alone touched). At the second home the cat is very old and if the litter box isn't scooped twice a day, there will be a puddle on the floor in front of it. That cat is gregarious and happy to be petted and talked to and not retaliatory in her accidents.

You mentioned a number of other gadgets here I didn't think to enumerate. Yet I also have a long of the analog versions of those things that get a fair amount of use as well. Knives and cutting board vs chopper, etc. Usually the decision is based upon the amount of cleanup involved versus time to do the task.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness in a Pandemic: 2021
From: Charmion
Date: 31 May 21 - 01:49 PM

Different topic.

I think my cat Watson is developing urinary tract problems. He pissed on the parlour carpet yesterday afternoon, right in front of me, after a prolonged session of padding in small circles, pawing at the nap of the rug, and mewing disconsolately. This is the fourth such incident since about Remembrance Day, and the third that is definitely Watson's doing.

Once is happenstance and twice is circumstance, but three times is enemy action.

So Watson earned himself a trip to the vet today, which could get expensive. X-ray, ultrasound, blood and urine samples -- the beat goes on.

The big green Bokhara carpet is rolled up and stowed in the garage until I can get the carpet cleaners to come and get it. Washing it and giving it the anti-piss treatment will cost a bundle of dough -- probably about $250.

BUGGER!


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