Resolution: fix the roof, remove branches. DONE!

I love it when a plan comes together. Especially when that means I don’t have to do anything! What? I’m lazy.

But my resolution to get the tree branches off of my roof and check it’s structural integrity? DONE Y’ALL. And it’s not even 2015 yet. Bingo bongo.

Not by me. By a kind hearted neighbor with time on his hands. Thanks to the Nextdoor app, and my whiny post asking folks who to contact about city tree branch removal. He had a looooong ladder, and a keen interest in getting some exercise. Win-win!

Unfortunately for him (but fortunately for me), the guys who noticed the fallen branches & roof damage? Wrong house. Mine had just a smattering of branches. See?

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That's all, folks!

But the Good Samaritan soldiered on, and removed a few branches from the big branch over my house. Yay! He peeked over, but dropped them out back.

He even took the branches for firestarters, a cup of tea, and my gratitude. I’ll still need to get the big branch lopped, to prevent further problems, but for now? Breathing easier. Next? Trying to contact the folks four doors down about their roof.

Hooray for good neighbors, and crossing an item off my list!

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Whoa that's high.
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Another peek!
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2015 Resolutions

Alrighty. As I gear up for another year’s Oshogatsu (cleancleancleanmochi), I have a passel of stuff I’d like to accomplish next year. So I’ma jot ’em down.

Two reasons:
1) helps me to stay on track, and maybe even slow my spending roll on non-Resolution stuff
2) sharing is fun!

So, here goes. I’ll be revisiting this & updating as I check these puppies off….

2015 Resolutions!
(in no particular order)

* fix leaking disposal/kitchen sink. I adore my friend and his lovely attempt to help a gal out. But last night? I drained pasta, and SPLOOSH! Water gushed from the pipes where it drains from the disposal. That pipe isn’t locked onto the next connector it just sits there in it. Ergo? When large amounts of H2O hit it, excess spills out. As I cook a lot of stuff that needs draining, disposal repair has shifted from “have them fix it when I buy a new dishwasher” to “git ‘er done”.
* regrade my backyard so water flows away.
* audit all the pots and plants in said backyard. Plant more native species (helps with runoff/flood prevention), and be truthful with myself on what veggies I actually eat. Just because I can grow hot peppers doesn’t mean I need 8 plants worth.
* get back to spin class, on a once a week (or every other week) schedule. Strive for 4x/month, but applaud 2x.
* party! As in having more people over more often. Strive for monthly (as 2015 is a decade year, monthly celebrations are in order), applaud bi-monthly, be happy with quarterly.
* caulk windows and doors.
* water seal the fence!
* consolidate debt still looming from 2013. Dammit.
* get estimate for hardwood floors. Probably outside my 2015 budget, but nice to know what I’d be looking at.
* teach myself how to install hardwood myself. Home Depot free classes?
* Black Friday 2015 (or maybe Presidents Day) Treat: new dishwasher! That’ll also solve the poor connection issue with the hose. Thanks for nothing, proprietary GE connections!

Aaaaaaand here’s where I get queasy; the big ticket items:

* clean/caulk the roof gutters, remove branches from roof that are pressing on it, and get the city to cut down the branch of the sidewalk tree that’s causing all this. (Or, more likely, pay to get it done. Sigh.)
* get an outside dryer vent installed.
* rip down adorable but not code backyard stairs. Get stairs done properly. (Should have done in 2013, but hope sprang eternal that year.)
* get an outlet wired for an above-range microwave. Get above-range microwave. Get above-range microwave installed. Toss old microwave that is breaking down.
* fix whatever it is that’s rattling in my car. Ulp.
* equity line of credit! Needed for above.

Phew. Got my work cut out for me. Was going to add Go On A Cruise, Attend SDCC, and Visit Friends In Cali. But after all this necessary spending, who has that kind of scratch?

At least it’ll be a most productive, lowering-stress, new year. Yay?

I make jewelry things!

Well, at least I have one 2014 new year’s resolution that I’m still working on. Go me!

Granted, it’s a fun one. So it’s not like I’d be likely to shove it off. Jewellery making!

I’ve mentioned that I’ve done the chainmaille thing. But I’ve been practicing punching out “blanks” of copper, bronze, and “nickel silver” (aka Not Silver, just copper with enough nickel to make it silvery. Wordplay!)

I’m also practicing metal stamping onto said blanks, drilling holes (to attach cords, or other things) and then polishing the bleepus outta ’em. It’s grimy – polishing wheels and flexshafts are dusty and/or gritty work – but I’m having a blast. And I’m trying to remember that I’m just learning, it’s not going to be perfect, not for awhile at least…

Today’s finished practice piece? An ode to Tippi & Manny:

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I’m kinda digging it.

The polishing grit turned the letters dark. I can easily scrub it out with an old toothbrush (jewellery protip – save those old brushes you can’t use anymore! After a good soak in rubbing alcohol or somesuch, they’re perfect for metal &  lapidary cleanup!) but I don’t think I will.

Takes my mind off the branch hanging over my house that needs to come down…and all the branches on my roof that a repairman told my neighbor about. Ones that are putting pressure on my roof. Dammit! Yet another reason I’m dying for roof access… I’d take care of that myself if I could. But nobody wants me to scale a 40′ ladder. Srsly.

Bye bye, moneies!

Deck: goin’ dooooown.

It’s been one of those weeks. A slew of things came along that drove me crazy. Or rather to….

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This week, you complete me.

Why? Because my deck is driving me batty. Fortunately, I have good friends that care, and one in particular that came, saw and sawed. As in sawed apart my deck, and helped with the rotted wood behind it. Huzzah!

Because I have Photo Grid and I’m nothing if not excited by new toys, here’s a nutshell of the work he put in. (I think I passed him a level at some point.)

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Holy bleep that's a lot of work.

But today? A contractor that’s working on Red next door (and doing a darn fine job) told me he had stairs and cinderblock, and would I like to have him put up stairs? “How’s $400?”

Um, yes please?

Now, of course I wouldn’t be me without freaking out about something, so looking a gift horse in the mouth was bound to happen.

* I worry about the sewer; the opening thingy will be covered by the stairs. Even though he’s leaving a space for plumber types to access it from under the stairs? I still worry.

* I worry about the glass block window, as it’ll be covered completely by the concrete stairs. But it’s a small price, right?

I worry that it’s a good thing, and I’m not particularly used to good things. I’m gonna have to get over that though.

Right now? It looks really nice, and extremely solid. In fact, it’s kinda got a Sesame Street vibe. Me likey.

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I’ll update once the final piece is up. The other guy is off getting wood filler to cover the rim joist. And, yes, I worry that’s not good enough, like I know what’s better. But what else? Iron? Kryptonite? My friend put up temporary flashing, but that was a stopgap, not a solution (though he did a damn good job of it.)

Seriously, I’ve got to learn how to breathe.

Oh. This can’t be good.

I did a bunch of yard work today. Pulled out a few of the cucumber plants that have called it a day (one more is still trying to send out blossoms, bless it’s heart.) Picked a peck of peppers. Planted a new mum. Went inside and celebrated my workness by popping the peppers into the fridge.

Then, as I popped out onto the deck for a final look-see…

*snap*

*pop*

But no crackle, and certainly no rice crispies. Instead, I felt like I had been lowered about an inch or two. Because I had. The deck pulled itself away from my house. Oh yeah. This is great.

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Yep. Boom goes the dynamite.

I hopped off the deck to see what was going on underneath….

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Creeeeeak. Or that's what I heard in my head.

Aaaaaaand checked out the view from a level spot.

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Awesomesauce. Not.

Sigh.

I really want to just rip the whole bugger down and get a quote on iron stairs. Hot as a bugger? Most probably. Expensive as [RADIO EDIT]? Ditto. But it wouldn’t go anywhere.

Or maybe brick. Though I’d hate to lose the window, and it’s bit of light in the swamp room.

Just when you think it’s going on an even keel….

Bright side? Peppers!

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I'm saying this is a peck. Sure.

Rose water.

My little tea roses are blooming! Well, three are. The biggest one has some gorgeous color, and after the rain it looked pretty. So I share.

I can’t decide if I like it better…

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Au natural
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... Or with a little light on the subject.

And good news – I’m putting a hose spigot in on the back wall of the house! Okay, not me. But I am having someone do it. With a “frost free” setting, which means more protection from the elements (though I will have to cut the water off to the spigot in freezing temps.)

Next, the outdoor dryer vent. And maybe, just maybe, a kitchen disposal. I’m craaaaazy! Woohoo!

How to paint a front door. Sorta.

* gather your accouterments, including something to drink. This is thirsty work y’all.

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* put on your grubbies. Or just grab something out of the donation bag that has been sitting by the door for three weeks.

* make sure your cat is nowhere nearby. Ish.
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* open a window or two for ventilation. Make sure your drop cloth is weighed down in case of a strong breeze.
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* decide to skip the gloves while you stir paint. Stir paint. Paint hands. Put on gloves.
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* start painting. Think it looks horrible. Wonder if you should have paid somebody.

* finish painting first coat. Feel badass.
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* moisturize hands as a thank-you for them putting up with latex gloves. Take a break while the first coat dries. Realize why you never played sports.
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* put on second coat. Immediately freak out after you notice all the spots you missed. And that the paint looks like old orange skin instead of smooth glass. Dammit.

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* an hour later take a stab at a third coat, instead of a first beer. Sigh because it still looks pebble-y. Even after sanding between coats. Notice even more places you missed. Try to even the pebble-y out again. And again. Wonder if you’re coming down with OCD.
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* head outside to get an idea of how it looks to everyone who walks by. Hope they all suffer from nearsightedness.
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* call it a day, knowing you’re probably going to try another round of sanding and painting. Sometime.

* get that beer.