Monday, February 22, 2021

Arbor Concrete Edging

Monday: (02/22) Breakfast from Happy Donut, my usual sausage, egg and cheese English muffin. I checked on the construction site on my way to get breakfast. After breakfast, I started setting up to pour concrete then mixed about 18 bags and poured only one side of the arbor. I took count of my remaining inventory and considered I'd need a couple more to do the second side but didn’t have enough to assure completion. I also had extra work crushing the first 10 bags on concrete that have been stored for a couple of years in the tent and had some hard chunks. That and my getting older, and wiser, made me decide to do the second half later. Since the yard people will be here tomorrow, I’ll plan on doing it Wednesday. Fortunately we have good weather forecast through the week. I had a ham sandwich for lunch. Lou made chicken broccoli pasta for dinner. Lou and I went to Lowe’s in Sunnyvale and picked up 10 more bags of concrete.

Tuesday: (02/22) I removed the forms on the first half of the arbor concrete. Otherwise a day off. Granola and diced apple for breakfast. Lunch with Dawn and Lou at Baji’s Cafe in Mountain View. Lou made chicken cordon bleu with rice and coleslaw for dinner.

Wednesday: (02/23) I checked on the progress of the hole being dug down the street for the new building. Then I got busy and poured the second half of the concrete for the arbor curbing. 22 bags today, 18 bags yesterday. Granola and diced apple for breakfast. Leftover chicken broccoli pasta for lunch. More leftovers for dinner. I had veggie soup with an open faced ham and cheese toast.

Thursday: (02/24) I headed down before 0800 to look in the hole. They were using the huge backhoe to shave the edge of the hole flat between steel beams. They only had five sections left to finish having done most of the shaving yesterday. By the end of the day the big backhoe was near the top of the ramp and had pulled the remaining debris up behind him. It will likely be removed tomorrow. I returned home a little after 0900 and had some of Dawn’s rice ginger sausage mixture for breakfast. For lunch I picked up a veggie burrito from El Gruellense. Lou and Dawn headed off for lunch at Ann’s cafe in Menlo park and visited a few thrift stores and did grocery shopping on the way home. I stripped the forms and cleaned up the arbor construction area. Lou made leftover chicken cordon bleu with rice and roasted tomatoes for dinner.

Friday: (02/25) Breakfast from Happy Donut, my usual. I headed off to Bear Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve for a hike. My hike included all the trails in the preserve, a loop up to Madrone Knoll near 1700 feet up from the parking area. I went up via the Alma Trail and back on the Redwood Springs Trail. It was an 8 mile hike on a really nice day. Quite a few fellow hikers including a swarm of hikers from my hiking group. Unfortunately there aren’t any good views out over the neighboring mountains and valleys from the trail. I picked up lunch at the China Wok restaurant in Sunnyvale on my way home. We had tomato soup with toast for dinner.

Saturday: (02/27) We worked in the yard today. I continued cleanup around the arbor. I had to leave buried concrete debris around. I crushed all the larger debris into more baserock rather than have to add it to the garbage bin. Lou and Dawn cleared the new garden area. Lou and I went to Lowe’s and picked up a load of steer manure and some garden soil. Back home Lou and I spread the manure on the garden spot and then I ran the rototiller over it. We returned to Lowes for a second load of manure for the old garden spot. Dawn came with us this time. Granola and banana for breakfast. Lasagna from Harry’s Hofbrau for lunch. Lou and Dawn had their prime rib for lunch. Leftovers for dinner.

Sunday: (02/28) We all worked in the yard. I hauled some baserock to fill areas where brick will be installed under the arbor. I also placed some garden soil in the new planters under the arbor. We all went to Lowe’s again. I needed some PVC pipe and fittings and Lou needed more manure. And more supervision of the construction project down the street. Granola and banana for breakfast. Hamburgers from The Counter for lunch. Leftover Chinese food for dinner.

Monday, February 15, 2021

First Covid Shot

Monday: (02/15) Waffles and sausage for breakfast. I worked on our taxes today. I finished the first draft which is always a bank breaker. Now time th whittle it down to size. We had some rain last night and sprinkles today. Chopped salads form our nearby Corner bakery Cafe for lunch. Chili for dinner.

Tuesday: (02/16) Lou served beef soup for breakfast. I watched the construction project down the street digging their basement parking garage. One huge backhoe which could load a bobtail dump truck with 5 scoops was filling 10 trucks and making good progress on the hole. Lou and I were off to get our Covid vaccine shots today. It took about an hour in line for our appointments to get the vaccine and be watched for 15 minutes afterward. I happened to be in line behind one of my fellow hike leaders, Bob, from SJMWH. We haven’t seen each other for these past 11 months of lockdown. Seemed to be a popular place. When we came out we met Sabrina, another of our hikers. When we were finished we went to lunch at the Country Inn in Cupertino. After lunch we went grocery shopping at the Neighborhood Walmart Market in San Jose. Cottage cheese and diced ham for dinner.

Wednesday: (02/17) I spent some time watching the hole at the construction site down the street get bigger. I attended my Wednesday webinar. I did a little work on the arbor concrete forms amounting to only cutting some birds. I did make a run to Lowe’s for a few PVC parts and more wood stakes for the forms. Granola for breakfast. Green salad with fried cheese and corn on the cob for lunch. Pork puff dim sum for an afternoon delight. Lou’s chili for dinner.

Thursday: (02/18) I was busy watching the dirt disappear from the hole down the street. They are now ⅔’s finished digging. I also worked on the forms in the arbor. I finished about ½ of the forms. In the evening I made a parts run to ACE hardware for some pipe fittings. Chili beans for breakfast. Ham and cheese sandwich for lunch. Lou made baked potatoes with bacon wrapped asparagus for dinner. The asparagus was the best I’ve ever eaten.

Friday: (02/19) Another good day watching the hole get bigger at the project down the street. They were going good until the huge backhoe broke down in the afternoon. In between watching events, I was busy installing the forms for the arbor edging. Almost finished. Breakfast was granola and a banana. Lunch was a veggie burrito from El Grullense Taqueria. Lou’s asparagus soup for dinner.

Saturday: (02/20) Some rain last night. I made a nice egg, ham and cheese breakfast sandwich late in the morning. No lunch needed. Chili beans for dinner. I avoided work most of the day. About 1400 I went outside and finished the forms in the arbor. Now just some adjustment, if needed, and filling to prevent leaks out the bottom where I dug out too much. I’ll probably be able to pour Monday after I cut all the rebar tomorrow.

Sunday: (02/21) Nice day. I did a little work outside after the usual Sunday morning TV shows. I added some 2x2 fillers under some of the 2x6 boards to fix the fact I dug too deep. I also cut all the rebar and placed it for installation when I pour tomorrow. And Finally, Lou and i made a run to Lowe’s for more concrete and rebar. Granola and banana for breakfast. Lunch from Lucky Chinese Bistro. Chili for dinner.

Monday, February 8, 2021

No Jury Duty

Monday: (02/08) Breakfast from Happy donut today. I enjoy their sausage egg and cheese English muffin. I cleaned out my backpack from my overnighter. I am on juror wait to be called this week. Not needed this morning but I had to check in again at 1100 so I couldn’t get dirty so no outside work. When I checked at 1100 I was not called so I got busy and worked on the forms for the arbor edges. I finished the North side. Not just some level checking and adjusting, if needed. I also need to cut and bend the rebar I’ll drop in as I pour. I won’t be able to pour any concrete this week since I can’t count on a full day nor any mornings this week. I may buy some more 2x6’s and install the forms on the South side as well. We’re expecting some possible rain this evening.

Tuesday: (02/09) Threat of rain today. I made breakfast ham egg and cheese sandwiches for breakfast. I was on jury duty standby again today. At 1100 I checked and was clear for the rest of the day so I got to work outside. I finished up almost everything on the concrete forms. I aligned the pipes that need to be flush with the top and installed some cushions next to the fountain bowl. It was sprinkling on and off while I was out. Leftover chicken salad for lunch. Dinner was frozen veggie burrito bowls.

Wednesday: (02/10) Another day of on call jury duty. Nice day otherwise. I attended my usual Wednesday Alphasoftware webinar and also tinkered on the computer the rest of the morning. When I checked at 1100 I was clear of jury on call for the rest of the day so I had lunch then got to work. I dug out a good chunk of the South side of the arbor to install the forms. Leftovers for breakfast. Roast beef sandwich for lunch. Quesadilla for dinner.

Thursday: (02/11) Granola and a banana for breakfast. A nice veggie burrito from our neighboring El Gruelense Taqueria. I was still on jury call today. When I checked at 1100, I had been released from oncall and clear for a year. I watched the construction project down the street. They began hauling dirt out from their soon to be basement parking hole. I finally emptied the concrete bags out of my car and went to Home Depot to get some 2x6 studs for the forms. I was forced to buy from Home Depot because Lowes doesn't seem to sell 2x6’s except for super premium boards, or at least they are priced as if they are. We ended up with some rain in the afternoon. Leftover Quinoa Blue cheese grape salad and some ham for dinner.

Friday: (02/12) Granola and banana for breakfast. Ham and cheese rolls with cottage cheese for lunch. We listen to the impeachment proceedings much of the day. In the afternoon, Lou and I replaced the tarp roof on our yard tent. The other one was dead due to sun exposure. The walls aren’t in much better shape but that will have to wait. The process of replacing the roof made the cleaning out for easier access providing a cleaner inside a nice side benefit. A nice veggie burrito for dinner from El Grullense Taqueria.

Saturday: (02/13) Lou made a Denver omelet for breakfast. We picked up the often usual prime rib lunch for Lou and Dawn and lasagna for me from Harry’s Hofbrau. We were busy watching the Impeachment close arguments and vote. Very disappointing ending. I looked at the sump pump which was stuck on. I turned it off last night. Today I confirmed the bad float switch. I ordered a replacement and enabled a temporary switch that pumps on a wider range and to a lesser depth. My original pumped from above 9” down to 4”. The temporary pump will pump from above 24” down to 6”. It will keep us from flooding in the meantime. Lou and I went to Lowe’s in Sunnyvale and I picked up more concrete. Lou was just out for a ride. Leftover lasagna for dinner.

Sunday: (02/14) Lou went out shopping for flowers for friends for Valentine’s Day. On the way home she picked up breakfast at A Good Morning cafe. I did some work outside today. I drilled some holes in the concrete to pin the new concrete to the existing. I finished the rough dig out on the South side of the arbor. We had some minor showers today but tomorrow a few more are expected and the next day there will be some real rain. So, I hope to possibly get some or all of the rest of the forms installed tomorrow. BBQ ribs with fries and artichokes for lunch. Chili for dinner.

Monday, February 1, 2021

Black Mountain Backpack outing

Monday: (02/01) I went to Los Altos Taqueria in Mountain View and got us all Huevos Rancheros for breakfast. I spent most of the rest of the day cleaning out some of the junk in my shop. That wasn’t the original thought. I planned on starting to install the forms in the arbor. It was still rather muddy but I have a couple of days with possibly no rain so I thought I'd start. I needed to get into my shop and, because of the high winds, I locked the shop door. I couldn’t get it unlocked today. I needed to enter the shop via the second door. But, there was nothing but junk and wood scraps in the way. I cleared it out and disposed of some of it , reorganized other stuff. I filled the garbage bin with a bunch of the scrap wood. I only kept the bigger, better pieces. Lou provided some flan that she made for lunch. For dinner I had a chilli relleno bowl.

Tuesday: (02/02) Cloudy but no rain today. Some showers last night. More activity down the street. Moving the last of the equipment out this morning. Breakfast from Happy Donut, my usual sausage egg and cheese English muffin.

Wednesday: (02/03) Granola and a banana for breakfast. Pizza from Chicago Pizza for lunch. Mexican food from the freezer for dinner. Busy day watching the construction site and tinkering on the computer. A mostly sunny day. I rechecked my backpack load for tomorrow's hike.

Thursday: (02/04) I was up early and headed off after breakfast just after 0700 hedging out through Barron Park and along the Bol Park Trail to the Arastradero Trail and up into Arastradero Preserve, Foothills Park, Los Trancos preserve, and into Monte Bello Preserve to Backpackers Camp on top of Black Mountain. It was a sunny day but very windy and cold at the camp. I arrived at 1420 but spent most of my time in my tent.

Friday: (02/05) I was back on the trail just after 0700 and explored a side trail on top then headed down via the Black Mountain Trail through the Rancho San Antonio Trail. I exited at the Rhus Ridge TH then walked back home. I was back home by 1230. A nice 26.9 mile hike with 3248 feet of elevation gain. Nice hike except for the wind at the camp.

Saturday: (02/06) I worked on installing the form for the edging in the arbor. I also made a run to Ace Hardware for some screws for the forms. Waffles and sausage for breakfast. Spaghetti with meatballs for lunch. Chinese from Lucky Chinese Bistro for dinner.

Sunday: (02/07) Leftover Chinese food for breakfast. I responded to my jury summons. I have to call noon Monday. I worked outside on the concrete forms for the arbor. I ran out of wood stakes so I headed off about 1530 to get more. Lou made chicken salad for lunch and we had tomato soup and toast for dinner.