you might be a rockhound….

AKA you might be a little crazy…. to drive 4 hours, 1.5 on dirt roads 30 mins on very bad dirt roads, following a convoy of other nuts (rockhounds), in search of tiny stones called “peridot”, which unless you were born in August, you likely have never heard of. Below is a picture from a different convoy, but same idea. Six vehicles ahead of you and at least 12 behind.

This has become out “escape from it all”. Now you might wonder why we would WANT to escape from such a beautiful place, but just trust me, there are times you MUST get away from a house building process. Oh and work too. Because I never know if there will be cell coverage I always get another doctor to back me up just in case. The funny thing with these sites is that you might drive for an hour or more with no cell coverage, but when you actually get to the site of rock finding…. you suddenly get coverage.

You can see the peridot top right… green. We found it is one thing to see it, and quite another to get it out in one piece and even if you got it out, another issue to keep it from flying deep into the abyss… never to be found again while you chipped away at it. We have never looked for actual gems. I had this idea that since I lost the diamond from my wedding ring while rockhounding in Arizona, that I might find a green replacement driving 4 hours to get it…….NOT!!!

As you can see SOME people found nice ones and had the patience to gently chip the little gem out.. I do not think I have the patience for THIS kind of rock hounding. HOWEVER.

We are absolutely LOVING these trips. They have become the recovery part of our weeks and no matter what they are going looking for (except gold) we have been trying to make the effort to get out there. For one thing, the view is always incredible.

This place was called lightening ridge, and clearly the highest peak in the overall area.

in fact SO HIGH that…

There IS a lightening rod at the top of the peak to prevent forest fires.

Anyways, I have not even gotten to the very best part. These events get 40 or so people out each week and it is totally amazing how NICE everyone is.

This is from our most recent trip, Tucker taking a break from “mingling” with everyone else and the dogs. Everyone totally LOVES Tucker on these trips.

Our most recent trip was to Savanna a small town on the other side of Kamloops. So on our way home I stopped at the nursing home …. I changed into my scrubs, and told the nurses that I was dirty,….. but a good kind of dirty.

Ken and I are thrilled to have found this group, it is the vernon rock club, apparently the second largest group in BC. They are all just fun to be with and I am sure that it is just therapeutic for everyone involved. LOVE IT

I am not sure if I have shared how wonderful the flower garden is doing with all of those lavender plants we planted last fall. Beautiful now.

This week it is all about Drywall. A large crew came and got a lot done in one day. It IS a messy business. But ? essential?

We have been reassured that all of this comes off when they finish the floor.

For many walls we are only doing drywall as a fire retardant, because we are going to be putting something else there anyways. But in these fire days we need to be thinking into the future. Apparently drywall gives you about 40 seconds to get out of your house. Which at some point in my life would seem just weird, but now… I am OK with 40 seconds.. We are planning the siding etc for fire “retardenness” not a word, but I like it. (more to come on THAT)

We have been quite concerned about what is going on in California, Oregon and Washington. We had our in 2017, however this seems so much worse. This was yesterday morning… a little smokey. Big machines moving dirt, essentially landscaping.

AND THIS was a little later one

AND then a little later on

So now we are “sharing” the misery of our friends in Oregon. The air smells like burning plastic.

So hard to know just where we sit with mother earth these days, I really feel like she is really pissed off at us. Another big storm threatens Louisianna today…… and yet only 5% of main stream media is even mentioning climate change. (despite the most severe fires in California, Oregon, and Washington) If people are uninformed, and people are trusting in mainstream media, then….. we have a major problem. Main stream media is owned by major corporations….. problem???? Major corporations are part of the problem. They Benefit from the same things that are destroying our planet, so they are not telling the whole story, because they can’t.

So the area landscaped and ready for the concrete patios.

I am sorry, but WORDPRESS has changed into a very fancy site for professionals, and I no longer really know how do anything on this site.

Much Love from Ken, Myself and Tucker

meanwhile in Canada

could this be a moment for a potato?

odd question, but when you have over 200 lbs of potatoes, you really do have to delve into potato usage, at least once a day.

This is called a TIEN a layered scalloped potato dish you have on a burner while you build it.

This is a noodle casserole that just needed a few potatoes..
and a cannelloni dish that was great with a few added potatoes.

I have learned this year that there is more to saving potatoes than just putting them in the basement or cold room. First of all you have to leave them sit for several hours out in the field.

Then you store them in a dark place that is close to room temperature for a few weeks. It is amazing how the cuts and bruises seem to mostly heal during this time. We used our new shed for this and covered them with fabric. THEN you need to go through and choose the very best ones that will survive the longest, so I picked out the ones that had a little green, or a cut on them, and those will be used now, and not put in cold room.

Not too much exciting is happening with the house, at least not in photos.

Insulation is going in, almost done…

We have opted for a small bank of solar panels and will add to them as we can afford. Since all of our heating will be electricity AND we have the electric car to charge, it just seemed like the kind of expense to put the money into before I retire, to cut costs after I retire.

It is kind of interesting getting solar hooked up to the grid. The way it works, at least in our situation, is that the power we generate with our panels, goes right to BC hydro (our electric company). We do not use it at all, it is like our panels are making electricity for somebody else, if they need it. I guess we will pay the balance of what we use in electric minus what we feed back into the system. For now, anyways, when the power goes out, we will be using candles and the wood stove. Or hanging out in the motorhome where we have batteries. There is much to learn, and as we delve further into this, I am hoping we can get a back up system with a few batteries, but we shall see.

Here is a lovely picture I snapped of Ken, the “motorhome salesman” Yes we ARE selling our old motor home after all of Ken’s love and attention has gone into it. He IS so good at selling stuff.

So we were just working around here a few weeks ago, we heard the ambulances, and they seemed to get close, and then stop. Then a few minutes later we saw this, a helicopter landing at one of the properties below us.

Sad tale it was. There are 5 large acreages below us, and they all have huge yards. I guess a guy was racing around with a “quad”. The neighbours said he has been racing back and forth from up at the house back down to the road and even was going around his wife’s barrel racing course. One time he just missed the edge and went over a small embankment, and died. The ambulances and helicopter were pretty helpless by the time they got there. Very sad, a guy in his 30s. A bit spooky driving by each day. Life is such a fragile thing at times.

So what blog would be complete without mentioning the very great wonderful grandson, Talon. His dad has a new work truck and he has to try everything out.

So wanted to share a recent discover with you all.

I have TONS of these beautiful babies, and was going through online recipes for zucchini, and all they seem to have for zucchini is zucchini bread which traditionally has been more like cake, with sugar, oil, and eggs.

I discovered a recipe for zucchini, but I used Patty pans and altered the recipe substantially, so will attempt to share it here.

It calls for 3 cups of grated pattypan, which is about one medium sized one 6-7 inches across.

7 cups of a mixture of whole grain flour and unbleached white flour.

combine pattypan and flour, add 3 teaspoons of salt and whatever herb you happen to have on hand, I have used my fresh oregano, rosemary Thyme, they all taste great.

Meanwhile, combine 1.5 cups warm water with a tablespoon of yeast and a teaspoon of honey.

When the yeast mixture becomes bubbly, add a teaspoon of olive oil, and then pour this mixture into the flour mixture.

I was thrilled to find my mixmaster and the bread hook, (as I have a sore neck shoulder). I processed this for 2 minutes on speed 1 and then 2 minutes on speed 2. I have had to add small amounts of flour while the mix master is working

I take it out of the bowl, and briefly knead it into a large round shape

Cover it until it doubles in size, then knead for another 2 minutes and divide in 2 and place in loaf pans and cover and let rise until doubled in size. Then bake in 350 degree oven for about 40 minutes and voila. Pattypan bread.

Of course I had to take it all a step further and make pizza also with the dough….

Pretty yummy pizza with pattypan bread crust. So this is my idea of preserving my pattypans.

I will write again soon about the house, I just did not want the blog to be too long

Much Love, Janet Ken and Tucker

the one year anniversary

Today marks the one year anniversary of taking ownership of this property, and it also marks the one year anniversary of us living in a motorhome.  We did not actual sell our other home until later into September last year, but we stayed here in our motorhome.

I guess there were moments in the past that we thought we might be in the house by now, but we are now looking at potential “realistic” dates like the end of October. The house will not be fully completed when we move in, but we are hoping it WILL be completed in the next year, rather than just prior to selling, as has been our custom with previous houses.

img_7178

So the floor…. We had a stressful week wondering what meant what.  We watered the floor many times and day and even many times during night, but still a few cracks formed.  So we watered MORE. .. THEN we noticed large scratches forming all over the floor, apparently from the hose we were hauling several times a day to keep the floor “moist”.  We then learned that we were trying to keep the concrete cool, vs wet. There is apparently a chemical reaction going on in there that happens faster in the heat and we wanted it to happen more slowly to prevent cracks. So we got a few small cracks leading out from the corners of the boards we had put there for our eventual placement of the rocks. I was SOOOO relieved when the main builder came to inspect.  I felt it was sort of like the surgeon coming to remove the bandages to see how the surgery had gone.  He looked cautiously at the cracks and all of the scratches and watched my reaction closely. I watched HIS reaction closely.

img_7177

I asked…. “can something be done about all of the scratches?”   He seemed relieved. “Oh yes all of the scratches will come out with the polishing”   He reiterated that he never promised “no cracks”   I verified that I did not expect “no cracks”.   So all is good.  He looked VERY relieved.   So we went on to talk of things like corrugated metal ceilings and other “interesting things”.

MEANWHILE the roofers were installing the roof.  I remember back when we lived in Chilliwack in a newer subdivision with lots of building going on.  I made a point of keeping my kids inside when the roofers were there because of the “language”.  Things have not changed a bit, except that I no longer take offence to the “language”, in fact oft times use it myself.

The roof is not at all what I thought it would look like, but I guess we chose the colour.  I guess living at (almost)  the top of a hill who cares what it looks like.  Apparently  90 – 95 % of it is recycled (even better).   AND the “standing seam” is apparently a seamless roof.

 

img_7167

So I guess with the longer runs of the roofing, the standing seam is higher, and I guess this is a long run.  Crowded LARGE driveway, the roofers took up most of the space.

img_7171-1

img_7174

The back part of the house appears a bit tattered….but we have several times covered the windows and doors at the back to keep storm rains out…. and then to keep the sun out.  I am sure one day it shall be lovely.img_7150

Ken has helped to complete the perimeter drain that drains the water around the house, usually into a street drain, but in our case, we had to dig a very large hole…..10 feet down, and fill it with drain rock and run the drains into that hole.  Ken is tamping down the ground around the house after that.

In the midst of this, we have had to harvest a lot of our potatoes, because we got invaded with Potato bugs. The bug invades the leaves, but not the potato, and only certain potatoes.  So we harvested the red potatoes and were pretty thrilled with the crop.

img_7137

Tucker is such a trooper,  just works hard along with us on every job we do.

img_7140

AND we have started getting ready to plant the garlic in the fall.  Our “garden” is full of rocks, and so we had a rock picking week….. and devised a way to save our backs. Dumping loads of dirt through  our bike trailer on the back of the jeep.  It was great fun.

img_7169

and our beds are looking great for this fall for garlic planting.

img_7166

 

and so ends our happy anniversary.  Stay tuned for my NEW song….. about Trumps mismanagement of the Covid virus….coming out soon.

Much love from Janet, Ken and our hard working dog, Tucker.

 

The day of the floor pour.

The garlic harvest is finally done, we took 2 weeks to get it finished and all hung up.

img_7091

i left a few out in the field to fully develop as bulbils.  These ones are Russian Reds.  Will plant the little bulbils in the fall with the other garlic.

img_7098

With Ken’s system we have gotten 5000 garlic hung in this small shed. AND it is drying quite nicely…  a week of very hot weather followed by a day of strong winds seems to have been perfect.  top side…

img_7118

view from underneath.

img_7117

and here is Tucker out standing in his field.

img_7015

I also learned how to clean the Artichokes and freeze them.  Years ago when we lived in Bandon, I decided to make an artichoke dish and looked up instructions for how to clean them.  I followed the instructions ….cut away this, scoop out this,,, and had nothing left at the end ????     I am getting better now that I am an artichoke grower.  We use a LOT of artichokes, I put artichokes in Pesto instead of olive oil. I put them in everything.

img_7089

f50fee0b-c289-4ba1-b442-3f4ef14f62ab-5044-00000601c1527456_file

I guess there ARE  some perks to being a doctors kid……but HOW COOL it would be to be a plumbers kid. Dylan created this very cool water device for running through in hot weather. It attaches a hose at each end,

img_7036

then he drilled random holes into it,

img_7044

then just added kids…..

img_7046

img_7048

Talon was a bit more cautious.

img_7051

Moving on to more things plumbing……Dylan, with the help of Ken and Pete put down all the piping for the infloor heating system, last week.  img_7081

The huge roll that holds all of this piping….. so they can just pull the piping anywhere in the house…again a Dylan invention.. He claims one could purchase something similar.

img_7080

We spent all day, last Saturday, (in our living room) figuring out the details for the kitchen cupboards. Very comfortable living room/kitchen etc. even on lawn chairs.  And Ken and Sarah you will see that your “?TV trays” have come in handy.

img_7088

I should go back a little to explain that our house is going to have concrete flooring. I am sure I have said somewhere else that this IS the 4th house we have built.  On our second house, in Bandon, we had infloor heating as well. However, I did not think of a concrete floor until the day they came to pour the concrete over the piping, and I was told it was too late to make that call then.  On our next house in Scotch Creek BC, I had wanted concrete flooring, but the builder talked me out of it, saying that they all crack. Subsequent to that, I have seen floors with cracks and thought…. what’s the big deal?

So this time we have (our builder has) ….. taken many precautions to try to prevent cracking. He has put an extra wall in the basement (a temporary wall)  that runs along the centre of the living room area, to support the concrete floor when it is at its heaviest…IE when it is wet.  He has also installed angle iron metal pieces in each doorway to attempt to separate the rooms.  We are in the middle of a heat wave, which apparently is NOT a great time to put in a concrete floor, and so keeping the concrete wet for several days is also an attempt to keep it from cracking.

Also it has been a bit hectic, for the past weeks, making sure that everything that is needing to go through the concrete is placed… such as the plumbing, and the venting. We also got the electrician to put in two floor plugs prior to the pour.

So let the fun begin.

img_7106

img_7100

img_7104

 

img_7113

img_7116

img_7124

img_7131

img_7123

img_7130

img_7133

So at the end of the day, it is water water water.  The pieces of wood in the floor are where we will put the cut rocks. We will lift out the wood and there will be a space there.

img_7135

We apparently need to water floor 10x a day for a week.

Bye for now, much love from Janet, Ken and Tucker (an outstanding dog)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The garlic that just could not wait.

Life carries on up here on the hill.  Our area of the province, Interior health, had gone, I believe, over a month with only one reported case of covid, and then last week all hell broke loose and there have been over a hundred new cases in the past week.  The city we are close to is Kamloops and I do not think that there have been any cases there, but the city in the other direction, Kelowna is where all of this has occurred.   It all started on the Canada day weekend tourist area of Kelowna.

The long term care facilities in our area, have just this past week opened up to allowing one visitor for each patient. It will be just one designated person or friend.   We will be sending out a new memo this week asking that designated family member visitor to be very cautious with their interactions. I know that few people have a loved one in a nursing home, or even KNOW anyone in a nursing home, but if you do, then you KNOW what a hard time it has been.

I guess we HAD breathed a sigh of relief…. how naive… how naive.  ….sigh!

I thought I would post a couple of lousy pictures of a dreadful weed I have just become acquainted with. I did mention it before, but I FINALLY figured out what it was. YELLOW BURR WEED.

img_6969

The plant goes along innocent enough, gets to a certain size and has prickles making it harder to pull out…

img_6968

.. and then the final stage the little green pods shown here turn into brown burrs.  BRRR. GRRR.. So these little Burrs stay dormant in the soil for up to 2 years.  It is so amazing, I have never seen this weed anywhere here… and trying to figure out how it got ONLY into my garden area, the only conclusion I come to is that the equipment that was driving all over the place likely spread the seeds from somewhere.  I also contacted the seed company where I got all of the cover crop seeds, because apparently this burr can affect grain lots.  They never got back to me, and I am sure it is unlikely.

On to the continuing saga of “the house”.  Our garden out front has really worked out well.  I get all the orphaned plants from a friends garden in the city, she is calling it birth control giving all the babies to me.  I guess I have an orphanage for baby flowers.  The Lavender we planted last fall all survived, so by next year it should be nicely filled in.

img_6994

Tucker has sussed out where his place shall be to watch the world turn from. I am sure THAT is where he is going to LIVE.

img_6992

There WILL be a patio there.

OH and what’s this….? thinking emoji To the right of the SeaCan… It appears that the sheds ARE reproducing.   Our refugee village is taking shape.

img_6977

Actually Ken has built another shed for drying the Garlic, as you can see at THIS stage the shed is no more waterproof than the house.

img_6985

It is a small shed and so Ken HAD to be creative to be able to hang 5000 garlic, and he did NOT disappoint.Smiley - Wikipedia

img_7001

So there is a 2×4  angled down from the wall and a 1×1 going across and that is where he is tying the bundles of 10 garlic plants.

I  thought if I showed a few more pictures it would make more sense… ( like 3000 words).img_7005

img_7006

We have a great system, I pull all the garlic and Ken ties it all up. I love pulling the garlic out of the ground  and would hate the tying up process. It is interesting how we just work into the jobs that best suit us.

Oh and ONE more picture to show that the roof has metal on it. So waterproof nowimg_6997-1

OH and I DID want to show a picture of our son Dylan, the plumber with his fancy schmancy little troller he scoots around the crawl space working on all the plumbing that goes on under the floor boards, and the crawl space is only 3 feet.   AND that is where all of the plumbing is…. well lots.

img_7002

Oh and yes there has been MORE rain and more rainbows.

img_6987-1

So this is the house with all the plywood on the roof, however it rained a few days later and the water just came in pretty much the same is if the plywood was not there.

img_6975

This is TODAY and they are applying the “peel and stick” which apparently  makes it waterproof.  This is extremely important because all the stuff that has to get done prior the the pouring  of the concrete floor needs to have a water proof roof.

img_7008

Things have been quite slow up until now, but 2 weeks from now we will have a somewhat finished floor throughout the house.  The wonders of concrete.  Of course there will be blocks of wood in the floor awaiting our creative time to finish the rock work in the floor.  Our goal is to get the house “to lock up” which means walls windows roof are all in.

Then we can relax and work on things more gradually.

But for now, we are working hard to make use of our garden produce.img_6995

With all of the chicken manure out there, the plants all look huge, but not a ton of veggies yet, perhaps too much nitrogen.

but we have great suppers each night,

Much love From Janet, Ken and Tucker, ever watchful Tucker.

 

 

A whole lot of trussing going on.

Sadly Trusses alone to not keep out the rain……

This week the trusses arrived on a big truck with a crane.  Each bundle was set down on the matching section of the house.

img_6919

img_6917

img_6912

And then the fun begins. This does look a little bit dangerous work, but the workers seemed to do well with it. Every time I heard them yell a little loud, I cringed, afraid someone might have fallen off of roof.  I guess different work types have different risk factors, and they likely did not think anything of it.

So here all the trusses are done on the eastern part of the house.

img_6921

The east and the west wing done…Unknownimg_6923-1

 

Most of the central area done

img_6922-1

And here are all of the trusses in.

img_6925-1

 

The ones that go up at the front are covering of the patio.  There is a 12 foot extension on the roof…. or 16 feet or something like that.

The floors have dried up and things are going pretty well … weather wise..time to call the plumber Unknown

img_6926

I did want to point out this beautiful flower that I have found all over my garden and in the hills around, I posted it on Facebook and a friend IDed it as Grand Collomia trumpet.

I looked it up and you can buy the seeds online. Somehow I felt kind of special having something growing wild in my yard that companies sell the seeds for.

img_6918

Dylan, our son, who is the father of….Talon…. our grandson..

img_1654

…came out to our place yesterday and today, and has done a large part of the plumbing.  I did NOT get any pictures of Dylan. (I should have thinking emoji .)..AND I did not take any pictures of the plumbing.Unknown

But I did take a picture of the one inch plus layer of water on the floor, after the deluge today.

img_6936

img_6937

Moral of the story, if you want to get a lot of rainbows, (which we seem to have here,) you are going to have to put up with a lot of rain.  Ken took this picture, I wonder if he noticed the flying saucers? thinking emoji

img_1661

AND we (actually KEN) have/has finished the fence around the garden.  We have stopped watering the garlic to let it start to dry out prior to harvesting (not that we had to water it this year at all anyways….)(not sure if it will ever dry out,  but manoman….. do we have potatoes.

img_6927

Much of our garden seems to love all this rain, because we are getting periods of sun in between, not sure if that will be the case for the garlic, but we shall see.

We had friends visiting today from another town in BC, and we were talking about Covid and “mask wearing” in our respective towns.  I said that I have started wearing a mask in stores, but that very few other people were. She said in her town it was similar, except at stores that required that people wear masks. She said that her and her husband wear masks, but mainly because she is a seamstress and has sewn several theme based masks.Unknown She also said that the only store that required that they wear masks was the fabric store, and she thought it was so that everyone would get an opportunity to wear their lovely sewing creations somewhere!  I thought that  was cute. I guess us “west side” Canadians have not taken Covid seriously.  I have noticed, however, that on my facebook feed I get lots of ads of VERY cute masks from major clothing design companies. Perhaps THAT is how you get people to wear masks.

As things are happening faster with our house I am trying to write blog more often, so I do not miss any important bits.

Much  love to all, Janet Ken and Tucker. And please, stay safe!

 

 

so we have joined a rock club….

So what do you do when you move to a new place?  To get to know the locals…. join a church, a choir….   I guess one might consider our attachment to rocks a bit like a religion???

So we have joined the Vernon rock club and have been out on 2 field trips with them.  As you can see Tucker fit right in.  Everyone loves Tucker.  This first one was at another gravel pit in Armstrong. (Quite a bit larger than our gravel pit.)

img_1646

And this was the view from the second field trip we went on. Something about rockhounding, you always get to go to the coolest places. In the middle of nowhere and with great views.  Turns out that this site is just on the other side of the mountain from our place.

img_6807

So our THIRD field trip was here…. look familiar???  Yes we invited the rock club all to come up and look for rocks here.  The Vernon rock club sent the invite far and wide and … over 100 people showed up at our place.  The largest turnout that they have ever had.

img_6897

The neighbours down below were freaking out seeing 45 cars come driving up the road….. the road that usually sees maybe 10 cars a day… My picture does not show them, (I started taking pictures after many people had left.)img_6899

Everyone dispersed in all directions and everyone had a great time, especially the kids. …. and social distanced, I think? There are about 25 acres in total to explore, so lots of distance between everyone. One guy even went all the way to the top of the mountain… to see what was there.

These kids found some great agates etc…. and they were quite excited about it until the found……

img_6904

THIS…. a snail in a shell, and suddenly there was No interest in rocks, only what they were going to do with the snail.

img_6902

…. and some kids found the large puddle down below and…..img_6901

people brought picnics and everyone just seemed to have fun. There were some clever “hounds” that we learned lots about rocks from.  AND everyone found agates to take home with them… COOL.  We have  been quite thrilled with the family nature of the rock club field trips, lots and lots of kids. Makes us wish we had taken on rocks back when we had small kids. What a great way to run them ragged.

 

e7fb4458-78c3-4a8c-9136-ad1ebd53a4da-4368-00000359a4ecc368_file

A few weeks ago we purchased a smaller motorhome.  It is a 2016,(so over 20 years newer than our other MH)  and it is shorter, but has 3 slides. So pretty much as big as the other one, only easier to drive, easier to get around things.  With all of the rock cutting we have been doing for the past few months, we are starting to miss the southern rockhounding we do in the winter.   We are hoping that by next spring… it might be easier to travel.  We are taking some time to go on a trip around British Columbia for the first 2 weeks of August.  See what BC has for cool rocks.  In previous years I feel that since I take 3 months off in the winter, that I should not take time in the summer, but….. i am getting old. what the heck.

img_6911

Our newer motorhome is really quite nice…… after we got rid of the cigarette smell.  We were so enamoured with the rig we had not noticed it at first, but after a night in it we realized that the strong perfumie smell was covering something up. So we took it back and they “ozonated” it over night and it really seemed to work. Now it just smells normal.

As you can see it is Garlic Scape season and we are falling sadly behind in doing things with the garlic scapes, but did make some pesto with them.

462eaac2-730e-40b7-850f-8d08a18028e5-264-00000007642686a7_file-1

Speaking of the garlic, it has sadly been through a lot this year. If it looks kind of striped in this picture, it is because last fall, I took the tractor and left piles of chicken manure in various spots.  As you can see, the deep green garlic leaves are in the areas near where the chicken manure was left. The garlic that was covered with the chicken manure…..died.  Too much of a good thing.  You can also see in this picture that there are areas that were lower than others. The guy we bought from said that the whole place was really well drained. Well not so!  The areas in the garden that were lower lying have tended to be under water whenever we get the torrential rains.. that we SEEM to be getting quite often…. NOT good for garlic.  We also at this point are wondering why we bothered to put in an irrigation system. We have not gone more than a day or two without rain for ?? a few months (pretty much when we put in the irrigation system)

img_6909

Here are the walls going up.

img_6849

img_6862

img_6863

so what it will look like in the Living room,/kitchen/dining room room

img_6892

f2bb8813-9c59-4565-a98a-9174d3eb6e59-216-0000001753b999b7_file

458beda9-b296-43f8-a48a-95e26d030857-216-000000173a139cc1_file

Some days we think perhaps we should be building an Ark, rather than a house.

 

img_6908

img_6910

So this picture is from today, storms coming and going.  We are warm and dry.  Ken has never wanted an RV with slide outs …. “because they all leak”  We shall see. We are dry thus far.

Much Love from Janet, Ken and Tucker, the rock hounders hound.

 

 

The Big storm…..

Progress is being made on our house, and in fact they were supposed to be pouring the basement yesterday, except for a huge storm that was forecasted (which did end up coming true).

At about 5 pm, the sky became black, with a lot of lightening and ensuing thunder.   Then  the large hail stones came, and rain, lots of rain.  Ken took some great pictures, it was pretty scary in a motorhome and poor tucker was hiding under the table.

img_1630

Warning: expletive language. Unknown   WHOOPS

It was brie,f but scary, we could not help but think of how nice it would be to sit and watch the storm in a house, warm and safe.   Then we had to deal with diverting all the water away from the bank.

img_6730

img_6728

unfortunately it had already gouged out the bank in front of where the house will be.  Still a long ways from the house to the bank, but we clearly need to work on this.

img_6734

So we now can clearly see where the water will go in a storm and have a few plans to divert the water.   I was thinking … an engineer would be able to determine where the water  would go and prevent it.  We can now see where the water DID go, and so we can change it for future storms.  We seem to get the brunt of some of the storms.

Our garden did OK, I feel it is somewhat sheltered from the south winds, however the hail put holes in large leafed plants, and the onions seemed to just break off.

img_6732

The garlic did OK, but there are low areas in the garden that the water seems to sit, and yesterday was no exception. The long dark rows are the potatoes, and they look great.

img_6675

So here is the house, a week or so ago.

img_6674

Then this is a few days ago, there is a “ledger board” screwed into the top of the concrete. this will form the basis to attach the “joist hangers” and subsequently the joists will be attached here. The purpose of this, is so that we can have a house that we can just walk out to level ground, with no step down going outside.  These two guys showed up a few days ago to measure the tar area space.  They had billed our builder for WAY more in square footage, and so they came back to measure…… it was odd, two guys in cowboy hats and measuring tapes just pulled in to the driveway. (I am sure they did not think anyone was actually living there )

img_6722

so in this picture you can see that they have done a lot of levelling out the big piles of dirt from the basement dig.

img_6681

I guess when we were having the plans drawn up we thought we would save money by building a small basement and the rest crawlspace, and the greenhouse area, just a slab.  This has turned out to be completely wrong in that having 3 different levels in the basement it has complicated things quite a bit.  I am sure adding a lot to the cost.  I am sure that the apprentice builder is learning a lot with such a complex basement build.

We are continuing to cut rocks, in fact the saw is running all day, most days.

img_6696

img_6697

Ken is working on fence building and starting to act his age, and hired someone to dig the holes for the posts.  We have just hired someone else, as a labourer to help with the fence posts.  These posts are HUGE, we found them online in the fall, someone was selling them cheap, so we got them delivered here.

img_6723

 

So THIS IS the builders toilet… and this was before it started raining today.  I wonder who decided to put it there thinking emojiimg_6731

could be an interesting week

Bye for now, much Love… Janet, Ken and Tucker the scaredy dog…..

 

 

 

 

RIP William James Ramier Feb 12 1928- June 5 2020

10 days ago my dad fell coming out of the grocery store where he bought lottery tickets and newspapers for the crossword puzzle.  An ambulance was called, he was taken to ER, and his injuries were determined. Fractured ribs, clavicle and left hip.

It was determined that he needed surgery, so was transferred from Williams Lake to Kamloops to see orthopedic surgeon.

However because of Covid 19 there was no family members there and when I was phoned, there was no mention of WHERE he had fallen.  My sister went to his house after this and realized that he car was not there, and so a search ensued to find his vehicle, and it was only then that we found out where this had happened and what exactly had happened.

He was received in Kamloops and prepared for surgery. But because of Covid no family members were there to tell them that he has COPD, and kidney disease, and what his medications were.  (we could only phone in and get snippets of information.)

His surgery was delayed because a clever anaesthetist noticed that his potassium was high and so the kidney specialists gave him treatment to lower his potassium. I was able to talk to a family practice resident… I guess at this point I thought that they knew his history and no one asked.

He went for surgery, and because of covid he was all alone, none of his family were there.  He came back from surgery and because of covid none of his family were there to be there when he woke up…. or tell them that he is quite sensitive to narcotics, even as a younger man, they made him wingy.

ALL day Long I made calls to find out how he was doing and my sister called in once and the nurse said that what was going on with him was normal for dementia patients.  I guess because of Covid 19 we were unable to tell them that he HAD been out in his vehicle a few days earlier getting lottery tickets on his own.  102911137_915453112213393_4049043637802230254_n

Then it was back to the phone for me to make sure that they knew that he was not that demented before.  He had been slowing down recently and I am sure he memory was failing, but they were thinking he was normally like this, because of covid, and because no one was there to say otherwise.

I guess there is no point in going into the whole story, sufficient to say that because of covid he was all alone.

I was able to use my position to get into see my Dad on Wednesday.  Had to go past the gestapo at the front door.  Wore my hospital badge and said it was all approved.

THEN I was able to speak for my Dad.

He went downhill quite a bit and so yesterday, I was able to get permission for my sister and myself to visit him. (they told us we had to visit separately but we ignored that)

We sat there for the afternoon with him, and reminded him frequently that we were there and that he had 4 daughters who loved him. Not sure if he heard.

And then he died.   He was not alone, and we felt that although we had missed all the previous times to be there (because of Covid) At least we were there at the end.

Covid 19 has been an earth shattering disease. I am frequently surprised by how every aspect of life seems to have changed somewhat due to Covid, but in the area we live in Interior Health Authority, which is a large part of BC, I am guessing at least a million and a half people, we have absolutely no active Covid cases.   In medicine we always weigh treatments, Risks VS benefits. I currently wonder if the covid restrictions right now are causing more harm than good.   We have another rule in medicine “above all do no harm” Although it is not part of hippocrates oath, it is attributed to him.

The premise is it may be better to NOT do something or to do nothing at all at the risk of causing more harm than good.

Although I was an early voice to add protection to LTC facilities and the elderly in the coming of COVID, speaking out loudly in early March.  I was all for screening all visitors for symptoms and travel history, the concept of stopping all visitors to hospitals and LTC facilities, I BELIEVE is a case where we are causing harm by our action.

I hope it changes soon.

Much love to all

Janet