Sunday, May 23, 2021

Newer Garden Beginning

Sunday: (05/23) I cleaned out the car from my trip, putting things away. I swept out the RV and garage. I stripped the concrete forms, laid the geo fabric and moved the remaining base rock onto the fabric. I’ll need to get a lot more base rock to finish the fill. Leftover Chinese food for breakfast. Lunch from Piece of Mind Pizza nearby. It’s a newer neighbor and our first time eating there. Not bad. Corned beef and cheese sandwich for dinner.

Monday: (05/24) I made one run to Mountain View Garden Center for 10 buckets of base rock. I threw that into the front yard patio area. I then made a run to the city free compost pile for 10 buckets of compost. I spent some time digging out Mt Donald dirt and mixing it with the compost in the mixer. Granola and banana for breakfast. Corned beef and cheese with hummus sandwich for lunch. Leftovers for dinner.

Tuesday: (05/25) I made one run to Mountain View Garden Center for 10 buckets of base rock. I threw that into the front yard patio area. It looks like I’d need 20 more buckets to fill the patio area. That’s about ½ cubic yard. I’ll also need 2.5 cubic yards for the garbage area patio as well so I will be getting three yards delivered. I’ll wait to order until I know how much garden mix soil I’ll need. I also made two runs to the compost pile for more compost. Granola and banana for breakfast. Corned beef and cheese with hummus sandwich for lunch. Corned beef and kale soup for dinner.

Wednesday: (05/26) Up at 0400 to look at the moon eclipse. My that's early. Granola and banana for breakfast. I attended my Wednesday webinar after sleeping in. I never got out to work. Late afternoon I did load my bucket into the car and headed over to get more compost, BUT, I forgot to load a shovel, so nothing gained. Lou and Dawn moved the remaining driveway free sale items out to the curb for pickup tomorrow on our semi annual pickup day. Ham and cheese sandwich for lunch. Lou’s chili for dinner.

Thursday: (05/27) We started by watching the City garbage folks remove all the stuff left over from our free sale this past week. I picked up a couple of loads of compost from the city’s free pile. Lou and I then went to Lowe's to get a couple of 1” conduit sticks. I need to replace the bottom pieces of Dawn’s swing. I also got some garden soil for the garden. I then removed the bad metal from the swing. We also had to watch the construction project down the street that was guniting their basement walls and installing a vault for the cable TV and phone. Chili beans for breakfast. Chinese food from Lucky Chinese Bistro for lunch and dinner.

Friday: (05/28) I cut off the bad section of the swing structure and welded new bottom cross pieces. I ran out of galvanizing compound. I built a ½ screen to filter the dirt for the garden. I then mixed some dirt and compost. Oatmeal and berries for breakfast. Guacamole and chips for lunch. Roast chicken, asparagus and rice for dinner.

Saturday: (05/29) I got out early and tilled the former Mt Donald dirt then mixed some dirt and compost. I determined I’d run out of compost soon so I changed to moving compost from the city free compost pile. I also picked up more galvanizing compound and sprayed the swing again. After it dried, I assembled the three pieces. It’s now ready when a crew is available to raise it up. Later i mixed more dirt and compost. I made ham and eggs with toast for breakfast. Chili for a late lunch. Lou picked up dinner from Harry’s Hofbrau.

Sunday: (05/30) I started by picking some berries for breakfast. Granola and berries for breakfast. I started work by having Ernie and Dawn help me stand the swing on it’s legs. I then drilled the concrete and bolted the conduit clamps on to secure the legs on the garden wall. I then installed the swings and the grills for the grape vine support. I then screened more dirt and mixed the compost until I had filled the new garden space. I added some garden soil from the store as a top coat and it is now ready for Dawn to plant her grape vine. I still have part of the space for the mixer and compost pile until I finish working the raised planter dirt. Lou’s chicken soup for lunch. BBQ ribs with Brussels sprouts and mashed potatoes for dinner.

Monday: (05/31) A day off. I took a bike ride over to the Arizona Cactus Garden at Stanford in the morning. Lots of nice blooms to be seen. I then rode back home via an extended tour through town. The only work done was to plant Dawn’s grape vine in the new garden. Leftover lasagna for breakfast. Leftover rib and mashed potato and a half a ham and cheese sandwich for lunch. Mizithra cheese noodles and carrot raisin salad for dinner.

Saturday, May 22, 2021

Dave's Ranch

Saturday: (05/22) I enjoyed an early morning hike out to the homesteaders cabin and then explored the North section of the ranch off trail. I had a diced apple with granola for breakfast. After that I drove my car up to a lookout point, setup my lounger chair and enjoyed looking out over the savanna. I had the other half of my burrito for lunch there. Dave and I enjoyed a nice hike on the ridge trail in the afternoon. I left for home about 1900, back home at 2200. I picked up dinner at the China Wok on the way home,

Friday, May 21, 2021

Foothills Preserve Hike

Friday: (05/21) I picked up breakfast at Happy Donut. I drove up to Foothills park and met my fellow hikers there. 18 of us hike up Steep Hollow to the Los Trancos trail and completed the loop back to our cars. I decided to go up to Dave’s ranch this evening. I picked up some food and drove over Mt Hamilton to the ranch. I had half a burrito for dinner. Enjoyed a nice evening campfire with the motorcycle club friends. While I was prepared with my backpacking tent, I just slept on the couch in the ranch house. The SCU fire did burn most of the East side of the ranch but the ranch house and homesteaders cabin areas were spared. The fire burnt the underbrush up to the South side of the lake. It will be a while before it is back like it was but is still a nice area.

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Watching the Building Rise

Tuesday: (05/18) All day watching the concrete pour at the building down the street. About 40 people working and 40 truck loads. Lou had a phone appointment with Kaiser about her hay fever and we made a run to the pharmacy to pick up some things. We also delivered a couple of boxes to the Post Office. Dawn was busy all day placing things on a free neighborhood give away Facebook group. Lou made French toast for breakfast. I picked up dinner from Panera Bread.

Wednesday: (05/19) Lou and I headed out grocery shopping early to Smart and Final. A short visit to Nob Hill and then back home. Our construction project down the street was very active too. A crane was there and lowered two forklifts down into the hole as well as tons and tons of rebar and rebar column cages. They also received a bunch of forms for the columns and walls. I was surprised at all the activity on the fresh cement. I attended my Wednesday webinar as well. After lunch I started building the forms for the front patio. It’s ready for the pour tomorrow. I had a roast pork sandwich for lunch. Dawn made beef noodles for dinner.

Thursday: (05/20) Checked the construction site and they are really making progress. The have half of the interior wall forms up and half of the rebar for the exterior walls installed. I was busy pouring the concrete for the edge brick base for the front yard patio. In the afternoon we all took a drive up to Foothills Park so I could look around in preparation for my hike tomorrow. We also went shopping at Best Buy for Dawn and Grocery outlet. Fried corned beef with eggs for breakfast. Corned beef and refried bean sandwich for lunch. Refried beans and chips for dinner.

Monday, May 17, 2021

Windy Hill Hike

 Monday: (05/17) I unloaded the concrete bags from my car. I met my fellow hikers in Portola Valley for a hike at Windy Hill Open Space Preserve. We hiked up to the top of the mountain on the Razorback Trail then along the Lost Trail to the picnic area. It was very windy and cold there so after a quick stop we hiked back on the Hamm's Gulch Trail. About an 8.7 mile hike. There was fog and there had been rain along the Lost Trail which was very muddy. I got gas and lunch before heading home. I made a ham and egg sandwich for breakfast. I picked up a late lunch from Los Altos Taqueria. Ham and cheese sandwich for dinner.

Saturday, May 1, 2021

New Cement Mixer

 Saturday: (05/01) Granola and banana for breakfast. I assembled my new cement mixer. It wasn't very easy and required some assembly and reassembly to complete it. I finished assembly about noon. After a nice Impossible burger for lunch, I headed off to Lowe’s. I picked up 10 bags of concrete, some rebar, and some PVC fittings that I need. Back home I was instructed to go to Kaiser Pharmacy in Santa Clara to pickup some meds for Lou who isn’t feeling well. I had to stop at Walgreens for an over the counter/under the counter decongestant that Kaiser was out of. Dawn made polenta with shrimp and marinara sauce for dinner.

Sunday: (05/02) I spent the day filtering the topping sand from the garden patio area. I then dug out the clay dirt below and topped off the dumpster. All but full now. Granola for breakfast. Ham and cheese sandwich for lunch. Leftovers for dinner.

Monday: (05/03) I leveled off the dumpster and did some final digging in the old garden patio. I plucked out as much of the remaining clay as I could, adding it to the dumpster. The remaining dirt may be added to the garden after screening out the bigger rocks or used as backfill for the newest garden retaining edging. About 1230 I headed off to Lowe’s for another load of concrete and a pipe fitting. I dug a small trench in the newest garden so the gray water and faucet pipes will be below the bottom of the prepared garden so the rototiller doesn’t find them when tilling. Some of that dirt that couldn’t be used as a backfill for the trench went into the dumpster. I called to have the dumpster picked up tomorrow. I made ham, egg and cheese sandwiches for breakfast. Lunch and dinner from Lucky Chinese Bistro.

Tuesday: (05/04) I played on the computer until the wee hours of the morning so I tried to sleep in. I knew that our dumpster would be picked up today so I moved the car out of the way and set cones up to protect the area in front of the dumpster that the truck needed to access the dumpster. I was awakened by Dawn about 0730 and told the truck was here. I dressed and took my camera out and caught a photo as the dumpster was halfway onto the truck. I swept the area and moved the cars back in front of the house. Granola and banana for breakfast. I then continued my nap a little. I took Lou and Dawn out shopping. Lou doesn’t feel like driving. We visited Target, Walmart, Kohl’s and Best Buy. Dawn needed some pajamas. I found some shirts. And we looked for a new computer for Lou. Back home I had a ham and cheese English muffin for lunch then took a nap. I slept until 1530 when Lou woke me up to drive her to a doctor's appointment. Back home I made corned beef hash and eggs for dinner. I was informed that my use of a website included some unusual traffic after my access so I spent some time looking into what it might be.

Wednesday: (05/05) Leftover corned beef hash and eggs for breakfast. I attended my Wednesday AlphaSoftware webinar this morning. We all went to lunch then grocery shopping. Back home I couldn’t get into working so relaxed instead. Lunch at Coupa Cafe. I worked a little on the concrete form late in the afternoon. I also extended the gray water and water faucet pipes to be flush with the top of the concrete. Beef over rice for dinner.

Thursday: (05/06) I got up early and put out the trash from the wastebaskets in the house. Forgot to do it last night and the trucks come early. Lou and I headed off to Walmart next to buy her a new computer. The laptop I gave her a couple of years ago died. Back home, I set it up. After that I had a very late breakfast of waffles with PBJ. Then finally outside to work on the concrete form. I did have to go to Lowes to get longer wood stakes. Lou came along and bought fertilizer. I finished the form alignment and rebar installation by about 1530 but decided in favor of a nap rather than mixing concrete. I made Spanish rice glop for dinner.

Friday: (05/07) We all went to A Good Morning for Lou’s Early Mothers Day breakfast. Back home, I mixed and poured the concrete in the form for half of the back edge of the nest garden. I was finished before 1000. After some waiting to do finishing on the concrete, Lou and I went to Lowe’s and I got 10 more bags of concrete. I had used 9 for this morning's pour. About 1530 I stripped the form and installed it for the other half. Lumber is so expensive now that I’m doing this job in sections. Unfortunately, I cracked the first section installing the second. Too much torque applied in attaching and aligning the form. It should be fine, just an early crack. Coconut pudding for lunch. Leftover Spanish rice for dinner.

Saturday: (05/08) I got outside fairly early and started pouring concrete in the form I prepared yesterday afternoon. I was finished pouring before 0930, only 8 bags. I then watched the concrete dry for a while and tinkered with the finishing. Later I started a trench for a lawn sprinkler line that will run to a sprinkler by the new garden. Later , when the concrete had dried sufficiently, I stripped the form and installed it on the North side of the garden ready to pour tomorrow. I prepared eggs with leftover corned beef hash for breakfast. Lou made steak with mashed potatoes and Brussels sprouts for lunch. Leftover Spanish rice for dinner.

Sunday: (05/09) Waffles and ham for breakfast. I poured a side of the newest garden spot. Later, I stripped and relocated the form for the final side to be poured tomorrow. In between I dug the trench for a sprinkler pipe for the recircuiting of the sprinklers due to the new garden. I also was busy finishing the cement. I picked up lunch for us all from El Grullense Taqueria. My super veggie burrito was also my dinner.

Monday: (05/10) I poured the final side of the newest garden spot edging. Next I installed the PVC pipe for the lawn sprinkler rework and then cleaned up the area. Ernie wanted to attend his monthly high school reunion group lunch but due to his not feeling top notch, he didn’t want to drive down. I had mentioned to Lou it would be nice to get down to Bakersfield for some good food at their special restaurants. She put the two together and suggested I drive Erne down. So, we’ll drive down Wednesday and return late Thursday. Happy Donut breakfast sandwich and a donut for breakfast. Lou made a tomato, pepper, onion and ham salad for lunch. Lou made cold roast chicken with potato salad and corn on the cob for dinner. After 25 years, or so of hosting the website I finally decided to sell the domain. I’ve never sold a domain before so this might be interesting. The TSA group that i hosted the site for hasn’t updated the site in 3 years and there was no response when i tried to contact them.

Tuesday: (05/11) Not much work today. I cleaned up the newest garden pit. I put away the form materials and cleaned up the concrete debris. I also moved the mixer out of the hole. Later I worked on the sprinklers a little. I had two sprinkler circuits that seemed to be clogged after I rebuilt the valves manifold. Turns out one was “clogged’ because there was a flow restrictor in one of the fittings. The other problem was a clogged rainbird sprinkler. Lou made fried eggs and ham for breakfast. We had chopped salads from our nearby Corner Bakery Cafe. Leftover Spanish rice with bacon rolled asparagus for dinner.

Wednesday: (05/12) Leftover corned beef and eggs for breakfast. On the road before 0900. Lunch at Denny's in Madera. Arrived at motel 1410. While Ernie relaxed in the room, I took a drive around town. Later, we went to dinner at Bill lee’s Bamboo Chopsticks Restaurant.

Thursday: (05/13) I dropped Ernie off at his class get together and took a drive around town. Ernie was finished about 1220 and I picked him up and we stopped at Dewar’s for milk shakes to go and some of their taffy chews. We drop home via minor roads. Highway 33, Highway 198, and Highway 25. Breakfast at Milt’s restaurant. No lunch needed. Pickled up some Chinese food at China Wok in Sunnyvale when we were nearly home.

Friday: (05/14) Busy all day installing sprinklers near the newest garden pot and backfilling the trench. I dug a short trench to locate a sprinkler near the cottage front door. Granola and banana for breakfast. Lunch was leftover Chinese food. Lou made chicken pot pie for dinner. In the evening I prepared and posted two hikes for next week on Monday and Friday.

Saturday: (05/15) I cut some borders for Lou for shelves. I restacked the wood that I moved out of the way yesterday to install the sprinkler by the cottage door. I reconnected the water line to the faucet by the cottage and replaced the concrete block into the flowerbed wall. I then removed a concrete block nearest the cottage end of the flower bed and relocated the water line to the sprinkler there so it goes under the wall rather than above. The sprinkler will now be buried rather than on a pole. Ham and eggs for breakfast. Leftover chicken pot pie for lunch. Pork roast with baked potato and broccoli for dinner.

Sunday: (05/16) I completed the connection of the sprinkler pipes including running a new pipe under the wall without lifting the concrete block. I used an auger and after two attempts at gluing up the pipe, I succeeded. I had to make two runs to Lowe’s to get parts, and lunch. My mental note paper must have been folded and I didn't see the needed sprinkler and flex hose needed for the last sprinkler. I backfilled all but the piping inside the flower bed because I want to assure it doesn't leak or break. It was a tight fit. I then tested and adjusted the sprinklers. Granola and banana for breakfast. Dim sum for lunch. Shepherd’s pie for dinner.