Thursday, January 11, 2018

Well Folks, It Happened Again

It has been a very challenging month for sure. We started off our year with below freezing temperatures and I was just fighting keeping the outdoor birds food and water as the water would freeze solid within 30 minutes of me getting it to them. I was cold and miserable also and fighting to keep my energy up to accomplish the goals. Then I got sick, a sinus infection with the worst headache.

I had curled up in my chair with the pups and a blanket and dosed off to sleep as I was exhausted. I awoke to a fog- both in the house and in my brain. My eyes have not been working too great anyway-lots of blurry things ??? It was like I was in a house stuffed full of white cotton ??? I thought that was odd because the blow back smoke from the stove was always black and hard to breath in? But I got up and opened the front door to let the smoke out-but after a spell it was not going anywhere and was even more dense??? I checked the wood stove and it was almost out?? So, I decided to fill it up and it would cause an updraft and pull out any smoke?(Bad decision)  It did take right off but the smoke was not going anywhere?

I looked at the aquarium and I could see smoke rising up from the light-so I thought the light was on fire . I unplugged it and took it out on the front porch and came back and looked at the aquarium-only to see smoke drifting up from under the stand. I yanked off the front covering and pulled out the two bins of crochet patterns and placed them on the couch, but could not see the floor because the stand had a solid bottom. I thought maybe it was coming from the basement so I ran down to the basement and looked but no smoke - no fire???

On my way back around the house outdoors I spotted the smoke billowing from the side wall of the house -and I knew I was in trouble . I ran in , grabbed the phone and called 911 and Crystal.  Fighting to see in the haze I found my dog crates and started snatching up the pups and tossing them in the crates all crammed together. I ran them out to the car and moved the car up the hill to make room for the fire department . It was 3 degrees and miserable. Crystal had arrived and she grabbed a hammer and me a crowbar. She was tearing into the wall and found a spot where the pipe went into the wall and there was a nest of fire. I grabbed the fire extinguisher and tossed it to her and she hit it with that.  Crystal was trying desperately to tear the sheet-rock off the wall but the trouble she has been having with her hands and her carpel tunnel had weakened her hands so she could not even break through.

About that time our neighbor who is the fire chief arrived and tossed us out of the house. We took the animals up to her "Tiny House" and then came back down and Jessie on the rescue put us in her warm truck to watch. I went into shock as I watched the firemen cut out the wall and chase the fire in the wall. They also carried out the wood in the stove -piece by piece and tossed it in the yard -then carried out the entire wood stove and set it on the little porch , just big enough to hold it.  Hours later it was over and the one wall was gone to the living room.

They thought I would stay with Crystal in the Tiny House where it was nice and warm but I would not leave my house. Bill nailed up some plywood and Crystal got the old furnace working. It was a good thing I stayed because the heat kept going off and the pipes would have frozen and burst. I kept fiddling with it until the wee hours of the morning when the electricity went off entirely.

When my son arrived the next morning it was 39 degrees in the house. Cory tore off the outside siding all burnt and twisted and Bill gave us two sheets of the black insulation board , which Cory put up. Cory is outdoors working on this in 3 degrees and he is dead sick also..... Once he got the outside wall closed in some then it got warmer in the house. I carried bag after bag of trash down to the highway , just trying to make some room to work. Crystal took a day off from work and she put up the sheet-rock in the house .That night I was so cold I had on 3 layers of clothing and a winter jacket and fleece cap and went to bed like that with 3 blankets and my pups. I was shivering so bad the entire bed was shaking. My friend , Joyce came and brought me two hundred dollars so I decided to go to the doctor. But my doctor was closed  so Crystal took me to something called Urgent Care. They treated me like angels . I was so appreciative and they took X-rays of my lungs and they showed spots of damage from the smoke so I came home with a basket of medicine and all of Joyce's money gone. Medicine is expensive .

While Crystal and I were on the road traveling we became entangled in stalled traffic. We were just 8 cars from where a lady was on her phone , crossed the line and hit a tractor trailer in front of us -killing her. I was beginning to feel like death was nipping a little too close on my heels?

I know I was in shock and even grieving for all the disaster in the house and started to cry off and on . Finally I was too sick to continue to try to clean up. I have washed 3 of the walls in the living room but my energy gave out entirely to this stuff and I slept most of the day yesterday.  We had a break in the weather and then yesterday the pipes in the building burst flooding it . I grabbed the drill and drill bits and drilled holes in the floor to let the water escape -trying to keep it away from the chicken runs so their little feet do  not freeze.

Crystal is laying a ceramic mat on the floor for the stove to come back in .

Cory has installed the thimbles in the wall for the new stove pipe and he built a concrete form to hold the thimbles so there is NO WOOD anywhere around the pipe in the wall. The fire inspector said that the chimney had settled -crushing the thimbles that were in the wall , allowing the fire to escape into the wall on the board that was a cross board which all the 2 X 4's were hooked to and that was how the fire traveled inside the wall.

I am very grateful for my wonderful , talented kids. It is hard to believe that these tiny babies that I raised have grown into such talented adults. I am just so tired of being sick and having no energy to lay hands to what needs to be accomplished. This was suppose to be my month to rest. lol

My pups have really struggled trying to understand how their world got turned upside down. The 3 older ones have been in hiding most of the time, just trying to find somewhere to find heat. I have hated to see them stressed, with their life upside down too. Love to all!

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Life Challenges

I am beyond bone tired. This cold weather just saps the strength right from me. Yesterday I worked on wood and then last night at 11:30 pm I went up and worked on the fire at Crystal's tiny house. Daisy and Indy went with me -they are so much comfort when you are staggering around out in the dark in freezing temperatures.

I came to the house and Indy was with me . Daisy came shortly after , but she was acting very strange - HIPER, off the wall, big buggy eyes and and staggering and falling down????? I could not figure out what in the world was wrong?

This went on for a couple of hours as I tried to hang onto her and sooth her. Then at 2AM I heard crystal pull in , so I called her. As she worked on that dumb stove she discovered her sleep meds were gone-Daisy had eaten 6 of her sleep meds -so she was overdosed.

She called and told me and I looked it up and they said to give 1 teaspoon of peroxide for 10 pounds- I did and she did not vomit- so it said you could repeat it once - so I did and she still did not vomit. Then Crystal came through the door and said that her girlfriend said we should take her to the vet-so we took off and got her to the vet. They gave her fluids and charcoal . Her temperature was low so they put her on a heating blanket and they kept her . We got home at 5AM and then back up at 8 . The weather is horrible and that drains me and we had a lot of running to do and then my chickens needed their water and it was late????

I am bone tired and have to get up during the night to put wood in the stove and then have a full day ahead tomorrow.... Hard to believe it will be New Years Eve!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, December 28, 2017


 I have worked my little "buns" off today and I am POOPED. We are having terrible cold weather and of course everything outdoors is frozen and it is hard to keep the chickens with water. I fix them hot drinks for breakfast and they really appreciate that.

Crystal was home today and she moved the wood truck to the house for me because we had a small load of kindlin on it that I needed to cut down to size. I had gone in the house and changed my shoes because my feet were frozen and my gloves too.I worked for a couple hours doing that and carrying it in place until I had the truck unloaded.

Then Crystal brought a truck load of monster wood up to the wood buster and we spent the rest of the afternoon busting these all up. So, for now we do have wood. Yea. I was frozen by the time we were finished and it was getting dark so I ran around dumping out most of the ice that was in all the birds water dishes and locking them up for the night. I Hate to see them out in the cold although they do not seem to mind at all. I still miss my big outdoor woodstove that we had when DH was alive and I had all my birds in a heated building and did not worry about them. As long as I was warm - they were warm.... Not so now , since that wood stove cracked open and I went back to my original woodstove we started using in 1975. I keep having trouble getting it to put out a lot of heat for some reason???? But it certainly does help with that propane bill -that heat I tried the year that DH passed and it cost between 600.00 and 700.00 a month for that  and I did not have that kind of money????  I don't know how people afford heat these days?????

This is my "not so pretty sewing project" but very Helpful project of tonight. At my back door is a glass door and of course it leaks air like a sifter.  With these below freezing temperatures and high winds we have been having it has been a nightmare, since this is in the kitchen.

I Love the light -that is why I chose the glass door. So I bought a clear vinyl shower curtain and then sewed a piece of fabric across the bottom of it as it was not long enough for the door. BUT, the fabric was TOO THIN and the air just poured through it . So, yesterday I had killed one of my outdoor jackets. I mean wore it slam out -so tonight I laid it in the floor and cut a level piece all the way across front and back and then I sewed it to the back of the sheet fabric and low and behold all that nice quilted piece of fabric has stopped the wind from flying through! YEA!!!!!!!!!!!!! Might be really ugly from the outside as you can see all my rips and tears in the jacket but if it helps keep my frozen feet alive - I am happy with it -as nobody else will see it , except for Crystal and the pups and kitties. This freezing stuff is MISERABLE!!!!!!!!!!!! So, you have to fight Cold with ????? What ever you have available , Right????????????? LOL

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Merry Christmas

All of that hard work all year long comes to a close for the year. But it is thrilling to know that you have made something that your family members might use and enjoy??? Cory is my oldest son, but the middle child . He has lost so much weight this summer and fall I almost do not recognize him. He usually does not like homemade gifts but he was a great sport because he received two turkey callers so now he is warm and ready to hunt for next year. Turkey hunting is the only hunting that he really enjoys. But he works so hard all the time that I worry about him.

Tracy is his co-partner in crime for all of these years . Has raised 5 babies of her own and now 2 angels from our family. She is a great Mom and she homeschools so you know how dedicated she is.

Ashley is her daughter that she and Cory raised and she has married this dashing young man , named Timothy who is just a God-send. A real family man that I love dearly. Both of them love their family and work hard to take care of them. I was so thrilled when they sent me this picture of the matching caps I made them for hunting.  Ashley always trys to send me pictures and they mean the world to me that she cares enough to include me.

Their two little french-fries (my nickname for little people), wearing their caps.  
 But you know how little french-fries are - they are mainly out for the toys! LOL

I seem to get a smile from my daughter, who is the oldest of the brood with this shirt as she loves her guns. lol  I am sure it did not tickle her "Funny bone" as much as the gift she gave me - a HEATED JACKET!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Man is that thing TERRIFIC!!!!!!!!! It even has heated pockets ... She tried with the heated socks , but I cannot make them stay on. They have some kind of safety feature I believe to make the batteries last longer ,but you only have them on for a few minutes and they turn themselves off???????? At the moment my feet are freezing and I tried to put them on just to warm my feet up but they would not even last that long?????????? GRRRRR. But, it was a great idea.

Rosie had a great Christmas because my "sister-chick" from Tenn. sent her gifts and she was having a high ole time.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Peek A Boo

                                     A new day is at hand and someone is a sleepy head.

                                There seem to be several sleepy heads at my house this morning.

And my little couch all decked out in Christmas colors that came from Mallie , the daughter of my best friend , who passed away this summer. These were her pillows . I sure do miss her.  We helped each other survive Christmases during the hard years . I wish she did not have to go so early.  I had planned for her to go AFTER me , as I am the oldest -so something went wrong with my plan somewhere along the way.

It was a lovely day here and after I got all the chores caught up Charlie(an old friend) took me to town to pick up one of my pups heart medicine.. While I was there at the vet a couple came in and were bringing their little dog to be put to sleep . You could tell he had a really bad heart and I was getting ready to break down with them. I really do not handle death well at all.

Then we went to the local "fruit-stand" and I bought two big bags of loose beans. I told Charlie that if it came a big snow -we could at least have beans to eat..

Then he took me to Rural King and bought me a pair of boots and fleece lined leggings for my Christmas present. I was "over the moon" thrilled.

These are really comfy and I am hoping now my feet will quit freezing. Friends really are a gift.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

An I Don't Know Day?

I had loaded the car last night so I could get an early start this morning delivering a few gifts and mailing a few. It was very dark and overcast and I was grateful because the sun had been giving me a problem driving. I did get the first stop at the post office and got the gifts mailed - only to realize how close to the deadline I really was ????? Time had really got away from me.

Then I headed out to deliver the next two and caught one of my friends at home and got to visit with her for a brief spell. I tried not to take up too much of her time because she was trying to clean her house for her daughter to come in today.... She divided her seasoned wood with me . I hated to take her wood as she pays for hers and I have wood , but just cannot manage to get enough cut to let it season out?? and the wood I have does not put out much heat.

Then the last friend must have been working so I left her gifts on her porch and headed home. Home Sweet Home - all safe and sound . My eyes keep me so scared and I always thank God for delivering me home safely......

I was tired and needed a lunch break so I took the time and watched a wonderful Christmas movie! How much fun was that . I have a friend who always watches Christmas movies and talks about how much she enjoys them, but this was my first time in years -so it truly was a treat.

But my good mood was to be diminished. A vehicle went flying up by the side of my house and I looked at the clock and thought it was too early for Crystal to be off from work? But she had bought me some heated socks and they needed batteries and I had got them today and got enough for her too-so I decided to walk up and feed the donkey and give them to her-only to discover it was Not Crystal- it was my brother-in-law and he just stated he was going in the back to help himself to parts for his truck from one of my old trucks?????  Not even bothering to ASK. I was very upset with him because he would have nothing to do with my husband when he was alive and now he wants to act like he owns the place. ????? So, I was in a bad mood for a while?

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Why Do They Always Hate a Bath?

I had planned to deliver some gifts today -But- my plans were changed when I discovered that something had got into one of my pigeon cages last night and murdered two of my pigeons. So, I spent most of the day working to make the area stronger, but while I did Indy managed to find some kind of perfume that he thought I would love???????????????

Needless to say, I did not have the same appreciation for it that he did -so here he is drying himself off and helping to get my mind off of losing my precious pigeon, Jammas? He was so special to me- solid white with feathers down his little legs and a funny little waddle when he walked. He always made me smile each morning when I went out to feed.

It gets very discouraging to lose animals that you try so very hard to protect and care for?

I wanted to hide my face in the blanket too - and have a good cry.

But Indy's funny antics helped ease the pain and make me smile at him. I do not know if it was what killed my birds or not , but Indy and Daisy caught something up under the chicken building in an area that I could not see into and they barked and howled and carried on for about an hour. I did move the rest of the pigeon family into a building that I hope is safe for the night. We will see what tomorrow brings. I hope it is not more heartache.