Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Getting Ready For A Trip

Wednesday: (04/29) Morning Wednesday webinar. Lou and I made a trip to a couple of hardware stores looking for a 3” trenching shovel. Couldn’t find one. I have a 4’ shovel but a narrower one will create 25% less dirt to get rid of. I did replace the sprinkler valves by the arbor. One of them was leaking but I haven’t been able to determine which it is so I did a bulk repair. I also installed a wireless sprinkler valve to replace the one that controls drip sprinklers by the house. That was easier than replacing the cable that ran through where the garden is now. I tested the sprinklers and aligned the sprinklers that were relocated for the garden. Popcorn for breakfast. Leftover Chinese food for lunch/. Lou made a chicken chorizo meatloaf with baked potatoes and carrots for dinner. 

Thursday: (04/30) I relaxed all morning then got outside after lunch. I completed the backfilling of the edge of the new garden and dug a little bit of the trench to extend the gray water discharge. I then worked on the sprinklers adding some needed emitters for planters and resolving low flow on one circuit. Everything is now watering except the garden spots. No breakfast. Leftover spaghetti for lunch, A meatloaf slider for an afternoon snack, Salmon fried rice for dinner.

Friday: (05/01) Lou and I did some grocery shopping at Nob Hill Market this morning. In the afternoon I reorganized my base rock pile to create more room to store bad dirt in the front yard. I also drained and filled the RV fresh water tank. We’ve been using it since we filled it up in New York in September. There wasn’t too much left. Leftover lasagna for breakfast. Sausage and fries for lunch. Lou made chili relleno with leftover meatloaf and corn on the cob. 

Saturday: (05/02) I dumped the holding tanks. I also installed a new connector on the old TV antenna cable. I still need to replace the cable , just not before our trip. I brought the slides in and raised the jacks and headed off with the RV to fill the LPG tank. Lou and I also tried to shop at our local Ace Hardware store to get some manure for the garden but the waiting line to get in was too long. On the way we noticed that the Summer Winds Garden shop had activity. They are preparing to open this Monday. Really nice! Frozen Waffles for breakfast. We picked up lunch from Harry’s Hofbrau in Redwood City. Had to pick up because they no longer do Doordash. Lou and Dawn enjoy their prime rib and I love the veggie lasagna. 

Sunday: (05/03) Granola for breakfast. We enjoyed the Sunday morning TV shows and finished loading the RV. I had parked the RV on the street in front of the house yesterday when I returned from getting LPG. I hitched up the Jeep and we departed at about 1140. We arrived at Pinnacles National Park about 1330. The guard at the entrance to the park advised us of the park closure. Only people like us with camping reservations were allowed in. No driving beyond the campground. Only bicycles and hikers. Except, I learned when i checked in that Handicap Placards allow driving up into the park so Lou and Dawn will be able to see further than the campground. After setting up camp we relaxed in the yard listening to the quail singing. Lou and Dawn took a drive around the park. On our evening walk around the campground we watch 4-5 condors settling in to roost over the campground host living area.

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

So Long Mr Hobbs

Tuesday: (04/28) Granola and banana for breakfast. Lou and Dawn were off to deliver Mr Hobbes to the vet to have his paw looked at. I took a bike ride out through Los Altos to Cupertino and back home, about 11 miles. When I was taking a butt rest in Cupertino Lou called and gave me some bad news. Mr Hobbes has cancer in his paw and lungs and was being put to sleep. Back home I had more leftover Chinese chow fun and black bean fish for lunch. After lunch and a short nap, I got to work in the yard. I moved some dirt from Mt Donald to the garden and mixed it in with the existing. That brought the level up to its final point and got rid of some of the excess dirt of Mt Donald. Lou made green salads for dinner.


Saturday, April 25, 2020

Ailing Cat

Saturday: (04/25) I headed off early to Lowe’s again. I picked up more mortar mix and some sand. On the way, I picked up breakfast from Happy Donuts, a nice egg, cheese and sausage sandwich. Back home, I mixed up some mortar and laid another row of bricks. I also cut one of the corner bricks and set it in place. Tomorrow it should be easier to do the rest of the bricks with the solid bricks to use as guides and backing. Leftover pizza for lunch. I relaxed most of the afternoon. Lou made pea salad for dinner.

Sunday: (04/26) Another birthday. I prepared corned beef hash and eggs while Lou, Dawn, and Mr Hobbs, the sick cat took a walk in the backyard. I laid more brick pavers after breakfast finishing all but two bricks that need to be cut to fit. I’ll wait until the rest set up and do the last two tomorrow. I relaxed the rest of the day. We had leftover pizza for lunch. For my birthday dinner we got takeout from Lucky Chinese Bistro in Mountain View. My favorite chow fun noodles and black bean fish. 

Monday: (04/27) Mr Hobbs spent the day outside so we took turns watching the ailing cat. Tomorrow he goes to the Vet. I installed the last two bricks on the garden edge. They required cutting the bricks and , unusually, I got them right the first time. I then cleaned up and put things away. After an afternoon nap, I returned to work and backfilled about ⅔’s of the edge. I need to clean out the debris on the final ⅓ before filling. Apple pie for breakfast. Leftover corned beef hash and fried eggs for lunch. Leftover Chinese for dinner.

Friday, April 24, 2020

Stanford Hike To Arizona garden

Friday: (04/24) After breakfast I rode my bike over to Stanford. I wanted to see the Arizona Cactus Garden. Lots of cacti in bloom. I also visited the Papua New Guinea Sculpture Garden and the Kingscote Gardens. Then I rode through downtown before stopping at the Gamble House Gardens on Embarcadero Road. Back home, I worked on laying some brick caps by the garden. I got one of the three sides done and had a lot of difficulty starting the walkway due due to the grade changes. It slopes down significantly to one corner to meet the existing walkway. I ended up removing much of my attempt and set a key brick to align to. It will be easier, I hope, with the key brick being stable and not moving when I set the neighbors. Granola for breakfast. Ham and cheese sandwich for brunch. Pizza from Chicago Pizza for lunch. Dawn made more pizza for dinner.







Sunday, April 19, 2020

Pruning Apricot Tree

Sunday: (04/19) Granola for breakfast. We ordered a late lunch from Harry’s Hofbrau. I really like their lasagna and Lou and Dawn shared a prime rib dinner. Ernie had roast turkey. I suppose Hobbes, the cat, shared with Ernie. Evidently the friction fit of the end cap on my stub out wasn’t enough to keep it on when Dawn took a shower this morning. It flooded part of the hole. I hated to waste the fittings so no glue but I did tape it on now. We enjoyed lunch in the backyard. In fact we enjoyed much of the day outside. I trimmed all the dead branches from our apricot tree. It may be on its last legs. Not too much left due to a blight. I decided to take the day off. Everything should be ready to pour the base for the garden edge bricks. Tomorrow will be another day off because of rain. We plan to do our grocery shopping then. Tomato soup for dinner.

Monday: (04/20) Lou and I headed off to the Neighborhood Walmart Market in Santa Clara to do our shopping. We managed to spend two hours and over $300 dollars and mostly bought what was on our list. Back home we prepared eggs, sausage and tater tots for breakfast. We didn’t have any of the forecast rain but I still didn’t do any work. I did do a little tidying up in the RV putting away some of the extra stuff from my projects. Lou made spaghetti for dinner.

Tuesday: (04/20) Granola and banana for breakfast. Lou and I headed off to do some more shopping at Sprout’s Market after breakfast. Back home, I got busy outside setting up the mixer to pour. I poured the subbase for the garden edge and walkway to the arbor. For the average person this would have been a simple job. Unfortunately it’s me doing this job. I dug the way deep for the base so it will be 9-10 inches thick. That made the job bigger by 2-3 times. I moved a lot of the baserock which I stabilized with cement such that it is just a weaker concrete. I didn't want the baserock to sluff out when the garden is tilled. I finished up about 1630 but didn’t get everything cleaned up until 1730. Now I get to wait a day or few for it to dry before capping it with paving bricks. Lou made chicken potato and corn hash for lunch. Our afternoon snack was Brussels Sprouts. Dinner was Lou’s chili.

Wednesday: (04/22) Off to shop a Grocery Outlet Market before breakfast. I made a run to Lowe’s Home Improvement to get some mortar and more potting soil for the garden. I pulled some of the stakes from the forms and tilled and filled the remaining part of the garden. I also cleaned up the RV a little and moved my office from the dinette to get ready for our camping trip.Chili beans for lunch. I made bell peppers with chorizo and rice for dinner.

Thursday: (04/23) I removed the rest of the forms from the garden edge and added some more garden soil to top it off. I then cleaned up the work area and salvaged the forms for reuse. I also pulled four 200 pound concrete blocks from next to Mount Donald (a large pile of dirt next to a raised flower bed. I intend to increase the size of the raised bed to include much of Mt Donald. Granola and banana for breakfast. Chili beans and an artichoke for lunch. Pasta and roast tomatoes for dinner.

Saturday, April 18, 2020

PCT Hike Start Date Anniversary

Saturday: (04/18) Anniversary of my start of the PCT hike from the Mexican border in 2014 on this day.

Granola for breakfast. I was busy all day in the hole. I dug out and added a stub out for a second gray water outlet. We’ll have one on each side of the arbor, eventually. Right now I just keep extending outside the edge of my current work area to keep most of the yard usable. Then I completed the forms after digging out a little, about 12 five gallon buckets of dirt, to make it fit. I reconnected the lawn sprinkler pipe. And finally, I added the rebar into the forms. Leftovers for lunch. We had polenta with pasta sauce and sausage for dinner.

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Hobbs Bad Paw

Tuesday: (04/14) Granola and banana for breakfast. We all delivered Hobbs, our cat to the Vet. He has a bad paw. Lou and I reviewed our tax return and I did some final modifications and efiled our returns. After that It was time for lunch. I had planned on getting takeout from our nearby Chinese restaurant that we’ve never tried since it opened 10+ years ago. I walked over but they were closed. They have short open hours for lunch and dinner with a gap when they are closed in the middle. I waited too long to walk over, so I had chili beans. Then it was nap time and then tinker on the computer time. I never got any garden work today. Nice. I received a call from my dentist’s office this afternoon and my appointment for cleaning has been pushed out again into late June now. My heart attack delayed it for 6 months then Covid-19 delayed it another month and now a couple more months delay. It will now be at about 14 months since the last cleaning back in Virginia. Leftover rice with beans for dinner.

Wednesday: (04/15) Breakfast egg, ham and cheese sandwiches. I attended my Wednesday webinar. In the afternoon, when I got outside, I moved more dirt. Today I was digging out for the new walkway. First, I had to add some more boards to the dirt pile walls. I don’t have much room except going higher. I received a bill for part of my heart procedure back in Vermont last year. It should be covered by Kaiser. I called Kaiser and they confirmed that they rejected a payment for the amount billed because it was a duplicate billing item. I then calle Vermont University Hospital and the person that has been doing that billing is no longer there. The new clerk is checking and will call back. Cottage cheese for lunch. Lou made fish risotto for dinner.

Thursday: (04/16) Lou and I were off early to the Sunnyvale Lowe’s where I bought some 2x6’s for the sidewalk forms. The bricks will have 6 inches of baserock below them and the baserock will be dosed with cement to stabilize it. Back home I had leftover waffles with peanut butter and jam for breakfast. For lunch we had Baked potatoes with leftover stuffed bell peppers. I cleaned up a bunch of leaves that blew down from the oak tree. It was almost like fall. Lou had a call with her surgeon and then we took off her cast. I emailed photos of the arm to the doctor. Then I took a walk and got myself a nice chai latte. Later in the afternoon I finally got to work and finished the digging and installed the forms. I seared some chicken in the Instapot and added some canned artichokes and Italian dressing and we had that over rice for dinner.

Friday: (04/17) I made breakfast sandwiches this morning. I worked on the new garden digging out and trimming the area for the walkway. I installed a branch pipe for the sump pump discharge. We’ll eventually have two outlets and shorter hoses. I made a shopping run to our Ace Hardware store for some PVC pipe fittings. I'll need to relocate the lawn sprinkler pipe. Then I tried to use strings to locate my forms for the walkway. Not much luck so I just started at one end and leveled the edge toward the other side. It comes out a little high on that opposite end where there is a ramp down from Dawn’s shed but I’ll just have to merge the levels as I get close. I finished most of the inside board of the form but I need to dig out more because it seems I didn’t get my painted lines on the lawn in the right place. Tomorrow I’ll dig some more and finish the form. Likely won’t be pouring concrete tomorrow. I do hope I get it poured before our next rain storm. I had a tuna and cheese sandwich for lunch. For dinner Lou made burrito bowls with banana pudding.

Monday, April 13, 2020

Montebello OSP To Black Mountain

Monday: (04/13) Lou and I went to Kaiser Pharmacy to pick up a prescription. Every visit is different. Very few people, metering entrance into the pharmacy, waiting in the lobby rather than the pharmacy. Back home, I made egg ham and cheese breakfast sandwiches then I washed the car. I finally got away around noon and drove up to Montebello OSP and hiked the Nature Trail, Indian Creek Trail and back on the Bella Vista Trail from the top of Black Mountain. Along the trail I ran into Jonathan and Leslie from my hiking group. We haven’t posted any hikes for over a month. Back home I had leftover lasagna fo ra very late lunch. Our cat Hobbs has a sore paw and has an appointment tomorrow morning. Since we got out the carrier, the cat is nowhere to be found. Lou's trying to introduce him to his carrier so he can go to the vet tomorrow. Rice pudding for dinner.

Friday, April 10, 2020

I really Dig This

Friday: (04/10) I tinkered in the RV a little. I helped Dawn with setting up a gmail mail list and shared documents. Later I got outside to dig in the garden a little. I completed about a 4 x 4” section and have about that much more to dig of the garden area. I still have more to dig out for the walkway. I hope I don’t run out of storage space in the front yard. We had breakfast delivered from A Good Morning. DoorDash works really well. Leftover Jack In The Box croissant for lunch. Dawn made a tofu and fennel casserole for dinner. She plucked the fennel from the garden. 

Saturday: (04/11) I moved the rest of the dirt out of the new garden spot. Tomorrow I need to relocate a couple of pipes then add the forms for the edge. I want to pour the base concrete before I add the garden soil back into the garden. My pile in the front yard was just barely big enough for the dirt.Granola and banana for breakfast. Ham and cheese sandwich for lunch. Dawn made something like scalloped potato hash with sausage for dinner. She blended last night's fennel dinner as the sauce. 

Sunday: (04/12) I mowed and edged our lawn and also one of our elderly neighbors front lawns. Granola and banana for breakfast. We had lunch via a Doordash delivery from Harry's Hofbrau in Redwood city. I had some great veggie lasagna. We did our first Zoom gathering with all the usual Easter lunch crowd, Cecelia, Dawn, Courtney, Ernie, as well as Dawn, Lou, and myself.