Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Mower Still Works

Tuesday: (03//31) I had to do something I haven't done in 15 years. I had to get the lawn mower out of the garden shed and mow the lawn. When I retired, Lou treated me to hiring a gardener to do the lawns. Due to the Covid-19 Shelter In Place Order our gardener needs to stay home. The lawn was about 4 inches high and really needed cutting. After that I needed to relax. I’m still not feeling well, not sick, just bad. Granola and banana for breakfast. Leftover creamed tuna and toast. Dawn made beet and bean burgers with new potatoes for dinner. 

Wednesday: (04/01) We awoke and planned to have soft boiled eggs for breakfast. We keep reserves in the RV. Dawn went out and couldn’t get in the RV. Change of plans, granola for breakfast. Last night When I closed the door on the RV I had difficulty locking it. I thought it wasn't fully closed So I tried to open it and shut it again. It wouldn’t open but I was able to lock the deadbolt, so I left it for the next day. April Fools!. So after breakfast I went out and tried to jiggle, rattle, threaten, and etc and couldn't get it open. Soon Ernie and Lou were out as well with all sorts of ideas. I considered what I wanted to break to try to get in. If we hadn’t placed dowels in all the sliding windows forcing one of them and replacing the latch later would have worked. I’m not sure we would have had better luck from the inside though. I thought the problem was that the latch had disconnected from the handle. Most of my tools both the RV set and my home pouch, were inside the RV. I decided to get my hole saw out and saw through the door latch and handle to expose the innards and try to open the latch slide. That worked and now I just have to try to locate an exact replacement for the old assembly. I’ll be sleeping in the RV for a while now. More comfortable anyway. I was finishing getting the door open as my webinar began. I attended it before relaxing more. I still don’t feel well. Hopefully my kidney stone passes soon. PBJ toast for lunch. I worked a little on the garden tilling off the top and raking out the pieces of lawn. We had tuna and noodles for dinner. Lou joined me for the night in the RV for guard duty.


Thursday: (04/02) Nice sunny day but cooler. I started with a neighborhood walk. I moved more dirt and removed more roots from the garden space. Lou made waffles for breakfast. We had leftover enchilada casserole for lunch. Lou made butternut squash with fish and broccoli salad for dinner. 

Friday: (04/03) Leftovers for breakfast. Lou and I went to the Grocery Outlet for a few things. I received and installed the new RV entry door latch. It fits perfectly. I prepared breakfast of home fried potatoes and eggs. And I moved more dirt from the new garden space to the front yard pile. We expect rain for about 4 days starting tomorrow so I tried to get the garden to a good spot. I rototilled and added compost and manure to part of the original dirt and leveled it all off. It doesn't look like I did anything. I still have about a 3x8’ strip to do the same reconditioning. My dirt pile in the front yard will be strained when I add the dirt from that strip and the walkway area. Dawn and Lou made bean and beet filled peppers with baked potatoes for dinner. Dawn also made almond chia seed bread.

Monday, March 30, 2020

Bol Park Walk To Mountain View

Monday: (03/30) I took a walk through the Barron Park neighborhood to Bol Park. I visited the donkey’s there. They were both in today but were busy eating breakfast. I continued through Gunn High School and along the Hetch Hetchy bike path to San Antonio Mall. Lou called and said she had a prescription waiting for pickup at Kaiser In Mountain View. I was at the decision point on whether I was going to continue down to Castro street or return home. Decision made, I walked on to Castro Street to Kaiser and picked up Lou’s meds. I then walked home but I had directions to stop at LUU Noodle House to pick up some lunch. That didn’t work because they were closed and not doing takeout due to the Shelter In Place Order. So, another try at The Counter hamburger joint failed for the same reason. Interesting that both businesses are in Mountain View and had signs posted saying they were closed by order of the city. Coupa Cafe and A Good Morning Cafe across the street in Los Altos are both open? I just went on home and enjoyed chili for lunch, something I love. Unfortunately, even though there was no rain and quite a bit of sun outside I wasn’t feeling well and napped all afternoon. I fear I have a kidney stone letting me know it’s around. I don’t think I strained my back. I eventually felt better and just relaxed in the RV/office tinkering on the computer. Granola and banana for breakfast. Chili sizes for lunch. Zucchini and homemade chicken sausage for dinner.

Friday, March 27, 2020

New Garden Area

Friday: (03/27) I finished relocating the pipes in the active new garden area. I still need to relocate one out of the other half of the new garden. I had to dig a 10 foot trench to connect the drip sprinklers and I abandoned the electrical line. Then I used the rototiller to shave off the area under a new walkway to use as fill for the trench I dug. The dugout dirt was heavy clay and went to the dump pile. Granola and banana for breakfast. Leftovers for lunch. Beet greens with rice and fish for dinner.

Saturday: (03/28) Rainy day activity so in reality no activity. Just some TV bingeing. Granola and banana for breakfast. Lou made creamed tuna on toast for lunch. We ordered Mexican dinners from Los Altos Taqueria via DoorDash. First use of DoorDash.

Sunday: (03/29) A relaxing Sunday, mostly indoors. I did get out and try to install a new antenna on the RV between rain showers. I also tried to setup my new sprinkler timers but didn’t complete anything. Nothing seems easy. Granola and banana for breakfast. We ordered in again for Lunch. DoorDash delivers lunch from Coupa Cafe. Butternut squash soup for dinner.

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Begin Shelter In Place

Saturday: (03/21) I took a walk around the neighborhood in the morning and afternoon. I also laid out the border for the new garden area. Pancakes for breakfast. Hummus toast and cottage cheese with broccoli salad for lunch. Leftover Tuscan soup and toast for dinner.

Sunday: (03/22) Lou and I were off at 0740 to Mountain View Garden Center where I bought two buckets of drain rock. Then we went to Ace Hardware and I bought more potting soil, manure and some pipe and fittings. The pipe is to extend our gray water discharge to the rear of the yard and out of the garden space and across it’s walkway border. I bounced among projects. I painted the cut line on the lawn and removed the strings. I cleared around the dirt pile in the front yard and installed some boards to retain the baserock and dirt. That took a while. I also installed the wire rings on Dawn tomato plants. It was threatening rain by the time I finished those tasks about 1500. I had leftover pancakes for breakfast. We had leftover broccoli salad for lunch. Lou and Dawn made spaghetti with mushroom sauce for dinner with a chaser of popcorn. Heavy rain this afternoon and evening.

Monday: (03/23) It was clear this morning but the yard was wet from yesterday's rain. Good enough reason not to work in the yard. I tinkered in the RV all day. I did try out a TV signal from our house antenna to see if it actually worked on the TV’s in the RV. It seemed to. I also installed the new amplifier and it seemed to work much better than the existing one. I still have to replace the RV amplifier or add an antenna switch to select between the external and roof antenna. That part of the existing amplifier doesn’t work and the second TV output doesn't work either. I do think the cables are OK. It’s so hard to get this thing to work and know precisely what is bad. I made pancakes for breakfast. Dawn made meatless chili for lunch. Leftover enchiladas casserole for dinner.

Tuesday: (03/24) I worked in the yard between rain sprinkles. I dug and exposed the sprinkler and gray water pipes that interfere with the new garden. Leftover pancakes for breakfast. Dawn’s chili for lunch. Dawn made German red cabbage and hamburgers for dinner.

Wednesday: (03/25) Granola for breakfast. I attended my Wednesday webinar in the morning. Lou and I headed off to the Grocery Outlet Market for a few things. Since it rained a lot last night the ground was wet and my dirt was muddy so no work today. I tinkered in my man cave (the RV) much of the day. L did order lunch from our favorite restaurant, A Good Morning, and drove down to pick it up. We are allowed take-out only during the Shelter In Place period. Lou and Dawn made vegetable soup for dinner.

Thursday: (03/26) We started with a walk to Boll park to see the donkeys. Unfortunately they were not on duty. We couldn’t see them in their pen. I spent some of the day digging in the backyard exposing the pipes to relocate in the new garden. It turns out most are not needed after the remodel. Granola and a banana for breakfast. Leftover spaghetti and some of Dawn’s eggplant casserole for lunch. Leftover chili for dinner.

Friday, March 20, 2020

Stanford Campus Walk

Friday: (03/20) Granola for breakfast. I took a walk up into Stanford University campus and the arboretum. Interesting with no people around. Unfortunately there are no restrooms open to the public since the shutdown. I might have had lunch there if something were available. Coupa is still open for takeout. Next I visited the cactus garden. One of my favorite places on campus. Then on through the Stanford Shopping Center. The flowers there are wonderful. Next I wandered downtown on University Avenue. I was headed home when Lou called and said they had walked at Stanford Shopping Center and were leaving if I needed a ride. I accepted the ride. Back home for lunch. After lunch I tinkered on the computer in the RV. Macaroni and cheese for lunch. Toast and Tuscan soup for dinner.




Monday, March 16, 2020

Sheltering In Place For Covid-19

Monday: (03/16) Lou and I were off early to do some grocery shopping. We went to Smart and Final at 0600 but they were closed and a piece of paper with their new hours which started at 0800. We returned home and had breakfast then returned to Smart and Final with a stop for gas on the way. The line at the door was about 50 people so we left and stopped at Grocery Outlet and got most of the items on our list. It was another rainy day most of the day. Later in the afternoon I went outside and repaired our Waterpik which had the wand shutoff valve stuck off. Quite a trick to disassemble and reassemble it but it works now. I did have an extra screw but i guess it wasn’t needed because it works better than new. I just had to oil the o rings. After that I got the rototiller out and mixed the compost and dirt in the new garden. Fortunately the compost soil wasn’t bad but the old clay soil underneath was a bit sticky. Granola for breakfast. Refried beans and chips for lunch. Tuna gravy and toast for dinner.

Tuesday: (03/17) Today is St Patrick’s Day as well as the first day of our Shelter In Place Order due to the CoronaVirus. We all did get out for a walk around the neighborhood then Lou and I returned home. Dawn continued on downtown. I then tried to catch up to Dawn but there was confusion as to where we were going and where to meet. I ended up with a nice walk around the Stanford Campus. Dawn did downtown and University Avenue. The morning was sunny, the afternoon windy, overcast and cold. Granola for breakfast. Chicago Pizza for lunch. The mandatory corned beef and cabbage with potatoes and carrots for dinner.
Our SIP pantry annex.

Wednesday: (03/18) I attended my Wednesday webinar. Mostly wasted the day. It was sprinkling outside occasionally. I did assist Dawn baking flat bread and doing the laundry, only a little. I have posted blog posts for days since Dec 27th. I still need to add the photos.. When I get behind I get way behind. Breakfast and lunch were leftover pizza. Dawn made soda bread disks and topped them with salmon and cheese for lunch. Leftover corned beef and vegetables for dinner.

Thursday: (03/19) Both myself and Lou had calls from our doctors in the morning. For me, it’s my last followup call from the cardiac department. I graduated. I drove down to the house in San Jose. I delivered 4 block bricks, my grinder, and the previously lost vacuum hose. I picked up all the food in the refrigerator and my $K Roku TV that I use as my laptop monitor. PBJ toast and leftovers for breakfast. Dawn made pizza on the soda bread disks she made yesterday.

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Reworking Lou

Saturday: (03/07) I installed the new Victron BMS712 in the RV and found it didn’t work either. So, I checked the battery fuse and found the one to the Aux battery broken and the fuse for the house battery open. It now works well. I set it up for the new battery capacity and for the lithium batteries and can now monitor the batteries on my phone. Nice. Of course, Amazon managed to have an early delivery of something i had sent to an Amazon locker in San Jose so I had to drive down to get the package.I won’t be returning until Monday and their three day return might have kicked in. This locker delivery to get my supplies for the paint job isn’t perfect. Otherwise a nice relaxing day inside as we had some rain today. Lou made salmon hash and eggs for breakfast. Green beans with quinoa for lunch. Dawn made chicken soup for dinner.

Sunday: (03/08) I spent the day working in the backyard re-potting and trimming the plans on the patio. In particular the jade plants. I had to make a run to the hardware store for more potting soil. We had some rain in the morning but most of the day was nice. I did turn the power off on the RV to test the battery capacity. It seemed to be generating solar and was using 18 amps from the batteries. With the solar it seemed to keep up and used about 7% of capacity running the refrigerator, which is a standard two way RV fridge. Soft boiled eggs for breakfast. Refried beans with chips and guacamole for lunch. Dan made mushroom soup and soda bread for dinner.



Monday: (03/09) Lou had a little work done at Kaiser on her wrist. I dropped her off then went to breakfast. On the way home I stopped at Grocery Outlet for a few things and at the Mountain View library to return some of Dawn’s books. Back home I relaxed and tinkered with the RV. I picked Lou up at 4pm. Breakfast at Los Altos Taqueria, some huevos rancheros. Baked potatoes with beans for dinner.

Tuesday: (03/10) I continued my test of the lithium batteries. This was the second day and I started at 250 AH down. I ended up at 8pm with 330 AH used at 11.7 volts. That’s probably about it, but quite good. With different charge settings that fully charge the batteries it might do more. I made a run to the pharmacy for Lou in the afternoon. Dawn made egg and salmon sopas for breakfast. Green salad for lunch. I made enchilada casserole for dinner.

Wednesday: (03/11) A nice sunny day but I relaxed inside all day anyway. I attended my Wednesday webinar in the morning. PBJ toast for breakfast. Dawn made cauliflower mac and cheese (no mac) for lunch. For dinner we had quinoa pudding and banana freezes.

Thursday: (03/12) Granola for breakfast. I drove the Hyundai down to the dealer to have some service and to get the intermittent power steering looked at. I had to leave it so I looked around and the nearby dealers while Lou came to pick me up. My new rototiller arrived in the afternoon so I assembled it and tested it in the new garden area. I also moved the plants from the new garden space to allow tilling it later.It works well. Leftover enchiladas for dinner.


Friday: (03/13) Ernie dropped me off at the dealer to pick up the Hyundai. I relaxed at home and did some tests on the RV electrical. It successfully charged from the RV engine at 26 amps and 58 amps with the generator. Later I used the rototiller in the garden and worked about half of the new space. I made fried eggs with sausage and home fried potatoes for breakfast. Leftovers with McDonald’s fries for lunch. Dawn made a quinoa chicken casserole in the Instapot.

Saturday: (03/14) Pi Day. It was a rainy day all day. Not heavy but continuous. I made a run to our nearby Ace Hardware and bought some Manure and garden soil. The little car was full to the brim with eight 3cf bags of soil and four 1.5cf manure. Back home I spread the bags on my new garden area. While it’s only half of the intended garden spot, the remaining area will take more work and Dawn is itching to get her garden going. The garden spot is now at the proper level but needs mixing with the rototiller before Dawn can plant. Interesting side, of course, the little car demonstrated the power steering fault when I started it. So my expensive dealer visit was worthless. Otherwise, I relaxed indoors all day. Dawn made egg and salmon sopas for breakfast. Lou and Dawn prepared roasted peppers and tomatoes with corn on the cob and chicken for dinner.

Sunday: (03/15) Another rainy day at home. I studied and debated the Coronavirus pandemics effect on my hiking and decided to cancel my week of hikes at Pinnacles NP. These are the first hikes that I’ve hosted that I’ve ever cancelled. The best advise, and of course Lou, recommend not going out and not meeting in groups. The fact that we elderly people are more prone to have problems when infected and the fact I’m hiking with a bunch of world traveling retired folks necessitated the cancellation. Hopefully we can do the hikes later before it gets hot. We need to stay optimistic and practical. Granola for breakfast. Refried beans and chips for lunch. Dawn made some cabbage and potatoes and fried tofu for dinner.

Friday, March 6, 2020

Ed Levin Park Hike

Friday: (03/06) Granola and a banana for breakfast. I emptied the car of all the stuff from Dawn’s apartment. I had cleared space in the closet. I was then off to San Jose to pick up the hula hoe from the apartment. I had brought it down to help with some cleanup and, of course, Lou and Dawn decided to cleanup the garden space. I continued on to Ed Levin Park for my Friday hike. Adrienne, the hike leader took us up the side of the mountain and back down on what can only barely be called trails. Very steep. Lots of cows and calves along the trail. Only a 7 mile hike with a 1700' climb. Lots of flowers and birds as well on a nice day with great views of the South bay. I had a chili size for lunch. Lou made chicken chorizo burgers for dinner.