Dawn of the dogs

We woke up Thursday morning to the sound of Sam and Zeke tap dancing in the living room. Leah got up to shush them and then saw the sunrise through the living room window. She came to get me up, and this is what I shot with the new iPhone’s camera.


I love the view from our bedroom window.

A little while later Zeke started bowing, a sure sign that his hips or back are bothering him. This is an occasional problem. He gets restless and starts stretching. If it gets bad, he whines. The vet we used to take him to couldn’t find anything specific, but suspected arthritis. We have some prescriptions that help after a few days. I started the medication immediately. He seemed a little restless Thursday evening but wasn’t stretching, so maybe this episode won’t be bad.

Rain update, 7 December

We have had a nice string of rainy days lately. Monday we recorded 0.42 inches. The total since December 1, when our terrible string of day days ended, we have had 2.16 inches of rain. Most of the rain has been slow and gentle, just what we need.

The forecast is for a cold front to pass through, dropping the temperature to around 19 F by Friday night. The next rain is not expected until next Monday. We are still in a drought, but you couldn’t tell it by the soggy conditions.

Dark Side with a new phone

My old iPhone was having problems holding a charge, so I took it to a shop to have the battery replaced. After two new batteries, it wouldn’t charge. It turned out that the logic board was bad, so rather than spend the money to keep a three-year-old phone working, we changed cell providers and I got a new iPhone 7 for “free”.

One of the major advancements of the iPhone 7 is a better camera, so after a hiatus of three weeks or so, we went back to the Dark Side of the Moon bar for jazz night on Tuesday and I took a shot of the band.


The iPhone 7 camera has a significantly faster lens, and I think it shows in the photo. It’s hard to see all the band members in this. We like the saxophonist. There are two keyboard players, a drummer and a bass player.

As you can tell, the bar was not exactly hopping. We don’t know why, but at least we got a good choice of seats.

Trim work

I have been working on trim in the house lately. We’re going with a Craftsman style for several reasons. For one, I don’t have to miter the corners. For another, I like it.

Here’s a view of the kitchen with a small closet on the left, the freezer alcove in the middle and the laundry enclosure on the right.


I have finished the trim from the right side of the laundry area door to the right side of the closet door. Here’s a close-up of the top of the door casing.


The top piece is the head casing. If you’re looking for a much more impressive name, you could call it the entablature, but I think that might be stretching it a bit. The top casing is made from a piece of stop molding to give a little definition to the bottom of the casing. The center of the casing is a slightly cut-down one-by-six. The top is a slightly cut down piece of brick molding. It still needs to have the nail holes and little gaps filled. Once that’s done, I’ll add another coat of paint. The paint looks white, but it’s slightly off-white to match the doors, which were painted at the factory. I think the factory called the color “moonglow.”

Here’s my work area. At some point it will be called our garage. I used to think our garage was huge. Not so much now.


I have a painting station on two sawhorses in the foreground. Behind that is my miter saw, which hides my table saw. To the right of that is a whole bunch of stuff that will eventually end up in a storage building or, possibly, in the basement. Among that stuff is the temporary sink the cabinet installers put in before the countertops were installed. There’s also a chainsaw, a tool bag, two lawnmowers, a pressure washer, some Mexican rugs, a compressor, two generators, four cat beds and two cat houses with heated pads. It might be a fun game to find stuff in the picture. Did you notice Smokey?

I use the compressor and a nail gun to install the trim. We usually keep the garage door up a little to let the cats come and go, but when I’m using the nail gun I close it to keep Zeke from running away. He does not like the sound it makes. Unfortunately for Zeke, I have a whole lot more trim to do.

Rain, Nov 30 2016

We had more rain Tuesday. It started sprinkling around 9 or 10 am, and was raining hard by the time we left for our regular Wednesday lunch of huevos rancheros. Getting into the car was a powerful reminder of why we have a garage and a rude awakening about what happens when the garage is so full of stored junk and working spaces that we can’t park in it.

The rain tapered off early in the afternoon. By the time it was over our gauge had recorded 0.88 inches. That makes a total of 1.88 inches this week, the first significant rain we have had on the mountain in more than four months.

This rain came faster and harder than the rain we had the day before. I had managed to spread more wheat straw around the house, but the runoff was strong enough to wash a deep rut in the front yard. There are several other places that will need some work to prevent erosion. That will have to wait for dry weather, which might not come soon. There is a chance of rain almost every day next week. Maybe the dry pattern has finally changed.