The Mystery is Solved & A Family Picnic

villisca

When we came home Thursday night, the yard was full of holes, but when I got up on Friday they were filled and the workmen nowhere to be seen.

This is the mess they left my flower bed in

This is the mess they left my flower bed in

So we did what any concerned citizen would do – we went to City Hall. They were kind enough to tell us who is behind all the digging:

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Farmers Mutual Telephone Company

Why? Apparently they are running fiber optic line to everyone;s house – whether you are a customer or not (we’re not) – so that they can come later and install panels INSIDE everyone;s house – whether you’re a customer or not – so that next year they can offer a fiber optic internet/telephone/TV combo. I’m a bit torn on the whole situation. At the moment we still have internet and phone through the same people we did in Bolivar (yes, we’re that good, ha ha! No, it’s a nationwide thing), and when we do switch I don’t know who we’ll switch to. I have to admit that the mess they’re leaving all over town makes me not inclined towards them, but as one Facebook commenter pointed out, that mess is made by a third party company they hired… so I don’t know.

While we were running errands, we ran into an interesting thing at Casey’s.

Hemlock's bus

Hemlock’s bus

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Yes, they’re a metal band, who I have to say contrasted sharply with the usual customers. I actually know one of the member’s cousins. Does that make me cool?

After all the excitement we still had to hit Red Oak to cash a check and buy something.

No, not that

No, not that

No, not that either.

No, not that either.

Sadly not this

Sadly not this

Hubby would look cute in this, but we did't buy it either

Hubby would look cute in this, but we did’t buy it either

still no, though it would look good in my living room

still no, though it would look good in my living room

Okay. We did buy this. When they say intense dark chocolate, they are not kidding. Holy carp!

Okay. We did buy this. When they say intense dark chocolate, they are not kidding. Holy carp!

Then we came home and called the Sheriff’s department about the dump truck that was STILL parked next to our driveway two months later. (it first appeared in late July). We had run into the guy in early August and asked him to move it because it made it very hard to get in and out of the driveway and he said he would. Well, anyway, he FINALLY did.

Bye-bye Junky, May your clutch plate be fixed soon.

Bye-bye Junky, May your clutch plate be fixed soon.

Then we managed to get a little work done

Kitchen wall mudded

Kitchen wall mudded

That patch is almost ready to paint

That patch is almost ready to paint

Saturday was the family picnic. Everyone met here and then we headed to the park:

Bad picture of the park sign. It's the thought that counts.

Bad picture of the park sign. It’s the thought that counts.

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The brother, cousin Troy, Aunt Carol, mom and cousin Tanja

The men and children are bbqing

The men and children are bbqing

Tanja, Akina, Mom, Axi

Tanja, Akina, Mom, Timmy, Aunt Carol

Tanja's delicious Apple Cake

Tanja’s delicious Apple Cake

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The brother, mother, cousin Troy, Uncle Dave and Aunt Carol

We went on a short walk, wherein I took photos on my REAL camera *gasp* that I need to take off and upload soon. it was a picturesque place, to say the least.

No, not with the real camera

No, not with the real camera

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This was actually on the way there, but you get the idea

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By then the mosquitoes were biting so bad we gave up and came home to finish the visit, though first since we were so close to Clarinda hubby and I ran to Orscheln’s for a paintbrush for the brother , who had revolted and refused to paint anything else until he had a new one.

Sign in Orchelen's. I was thinking of going but it's the same day as Timmy's birthday party, so I think we'll miss it.

Sign in Orcheln’s. I was thinking of going but it’s the same day as Timmy’s birthday party, so I think we’ll miss it.

And then we went to Easter’s to get a piece of metal to hold down the edge of the laundry room floor.

The store that is everything: True Value, Radio Shack, a rental place,

The store that is everything: True Value, Radio Shack, a rental place, and something else… all in ONE building!

these are perfect barbie size....

these are perfect barbie size….

Speaking of that metal piece….

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Ta dah! Now we just need to get several more, ha ha!

Sunday was only notable for two things. One, I went out with hubby for a bit while he tried to make a ham contact

Our parking spot

Our parking spot

 

And we had Chinese for dinner

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I’m sure we did some work or something, but I don’t remember. I think I may have been working on book covers. I know I did do some work on the blog – I am out of room on here for pictures because my cell phone – which I have been using to blog – uploads 4000 pixel images. Ouch. So I am going through the older posts, downloading the photos, resizing, and reuploading. It’s time consuming but its that or start paying 20$ a year for more storage. And while that’s not that much, it’s a lock in deal because once you start you have to keep paying or you can’t ever upload anything to it again. Bleh.

Anyway, it’s 9 a.m. and time to get the others up, so I will leave Monday and Tuesday for another blog. Have a good one!

Jo :)

In Which Hubby Gets a Job

villisca

On Thursday we woke to an even bigger mess in the yard:

BURYING COFFINS?

BURYING COFFINS?

This is my flowerbed. In my back yard. Against the back of my house.

This is my flowerbed. In my back yard. Against the back of my house.

The culprits. But who are they?

The culprits. But who are they?

I wanted to go demand who they were and what they were doing, but hubby rushed me off because we were running late already. There were three jobs in the paper he was interested in; two in red Oak and one in Shenandoah. Though we whine about how far away Shen is, it’s actually .3 miles closer – or so Google says – yet it takes 48 minutes to get there – versus Springfield’s 30 or less – because of the 55 MPH speed limit. Get with the times, Iowa!

Anyway, we went to Red Oak first.

Rural

Rural

A little water building

A little water building

Autumn

Autumn

Hubby got two apps and we went to the park so he could fill them out.

the water tower

the water tower

Hubby fills out his applications

Hubby fills out his applications

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The mosquitoes have been bad this year, and as we sat there one the size of a B47 started to buzz around. I did what anyone would do. I smacked it. the sucker exploded in a spray of blood. All over Hubby’s application. Whoops. I washed most of it off, but it was in a section he didn’t need anyway.

Despite the blood spot, he got the job, so he is no longer an unemployed bum, ha ha! He starts Wednesday and is working in an assisted living place. He was hoping to get out of health care, but as he said, a job is a job. And he can always find another one later.

We didn’t technically *need* to go to Shen anymore, since he didn’t need to put in for the job, but we’d planned to see Dad and Mel, so we went anyway.

Random grain elevator. there is one or more in every town, even the tiny ones. This is why I put my vampires underneath them; it makes the location a bit more ambiguous since it could be ANYWHERE.

Random grain elevator. there is one or more in every town, even the tiny ones. This is why I put my vampires underneath them; it makes the location a bit more ambiguous since it could be ANYWHERE.

cool building in Essex

cool building in Essex

We detoured to Porter’s Lake because hubby had never been. Porter’s Lake is really a pond that has a park around it, including a small play area and a roller skating rink from eons ago. The rink is only open for rentals – for instance you might rent it for your youth group to go have a skating party. I have been in it a few times for school skating parties and once with my dad’s work (their yearly picnic). It’s also the place my grandma and grandpa Harris met. Back then it was open every weekend and was the popular place to go. Grandpa was a bouncer and threw someone through a window or something like that. I admit I am sketchy on the details, but anyway, it was worth a stop.

While we were playing on the merry-g-round dad called to say his car was down – again. This time it’s the water pump, so we went and picked him up and brought him to Shen where we hit Mondo’s first:

You thought I was gonna order spaghetti, didn't you?

You thought I was gonna order spaghetti, didn’t you?

And then hy-vee where they had a lot of pretty flowers:

We went back to dad’s, hung out for awhile, then went back to Shen and hung out with Mel and her kids, then did our Wal-Mart shopping and headed home, where we found the brother watching TV, as he admitted he had done all day. Not super productive where the house is concerned, but hey, he got a job, so that’s something. I then stayed up all night working on a couple of covers, which I am waiting to hear back on, so fingers crossed and I will end this here since it’s so photo heavy.

On second thought, I will leave you with this:

Hello!

Hello!

Have a good one!

Jo :)

Airplanes

artwork

For no reason, here’s the airplanes I mentioned drawing and coloring.

 

Crop duster

Crop duster

 

spitfire

spitfire

water plane

water plane

And now you may go back to what you were doing.
Jo ;)

Blah Blah

I have a decent klout score. For those who have no idea what i mean, klout is a website that tracks your “influence” by looking at your tweets and FB posts and stuff like that. Anyway, klout members get “perks”, which mainly means free stuff they want you to try and review. I’ve never managed to opt in to one in time to get it – they send a mass email and it’s first come first serve until they’re out – but I finally did! I got a book!

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Cool cover

Since I have yet to find my kindle I was delighted. Now… I dunno. I admit I am only a chapter in, but it hasn’t gripped me yet. I’m hoping it will improve, though. For one thing it’s first person – which I loath most of the time – and it’s… Well, anyway, I’ll finish it first.

There is nothing of interest to mention about Monday except to say that Casey’s sells bacon cheese potato wedges.

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Heart attack in a box

Dad brought Chris back and so we ended up watching TV. We watched Captain America 2 (I’d seen it before but it’s worth watching), Supershark, which was as bad as it’s name implies, but fun, and Not Another Sci-Fi movie which was funny IMHO despite the bad reviews. In fact it was refreshing. We recently watched Starving Games, and while it has funny moments, it had the same problem that most modern spoof movies have – it follows the base material almost exactly with a few cornball jokes. Kind of like the old Mad Magazine movie spoofs. Not Another Sci-Fi Movie, on the other hand, had an original story line, a plot unique to itself, that manages to make fun of the other movies in that genre, like Hot Shots, Wrongfully Accused, and the older spoof movies used to. Okay, so the effects and writing on Not Another Sci-Fi Movie aren’t Leslie Neilson standards, but they were good enough to amuse me.
On Tuesday we woke up to workmen parking in front of our house.

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I still don't know what they're doing

It’s vaguely important to note that these guys have spent the summer working all over town. They’ve been systematically going street by street, and the little flags that have been appearing in our yard like late blooming flowers clued us in that they were coming. I still expected some kind of notice, however. A note taped to the door, stuck in the mailbox, something. We got nothing, and I still have no clue who they work for, why they are digging up half the town, or what that orange sheathed cable is.
We had lunch to the refrains of the dog barking.

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The last of the free cucumbers

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Steak sandwich ala hubby

Then hubby and I ran to Red Oak to spend the last of our cash on the stuff to hook the dryer up.

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Pretty clouds

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We found this abandoned at True Value. Makes you wonder what project the owner was working on.

Then we headed home and had an ice cream break.

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With sprinkles!

Then we got to work. I admit I spent most of my time on the laptop working on a movie poster:

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Also a QSL card for Bob Heil, who is a bit of a celebrity in the ham radio world. (He has a Wikipedia page. Look him up)

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And I colored those airplanes, but I haven’t uploaded them yet, so no preview.
While I was busy with that, hubby and the brother got some stuff done. They installed the dryer.

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And got the doors on the bathroom cabinet.

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They look sharp

And some other touch up crap. The fun thing to note is that as part of the dryer assembly we bought a heat saver thing that you can click open and it will pump the warm dryer air into the house instead of venting it outside, which probably helps in the freezing, freezing, Iowa winter (especially since there is no heater vent in the laundry room).

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This is it

It comes with a panty hose sock – this is literally what it is, reinforced toes and all – that you put on it to filter the lint from the air. So, we tried it and….

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*cough*cough*cough* I think you can come up with all the comments yourself.
And I leave you with that. Have a good one!
Jo :)

In Which Some Stuff Got Done

Saturday was the city wide garage sale in Villisca. I’d planned to unload some crap at it and to wander around and collect new crap. However I was mentally on the wrong day and by the time I realized it was not Friday or was afternoon. So much for that.
We did get some stuff done. We put up the boarder that we have in bathroom:

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And hung the medicine cabinet and, though you can’t see it, the brother caulked around the sink.

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Hubby tried to hook the drain armpit and plumbing up for the sink, but we came to a standstill when the bits did not fit. So after spending an eternity on Google trying to find what part we needed, we came up with two solutions. 1: take a lot of pics and take those into True Value to show the sink guy or 2: save up for a new sink and counter top. Since everyone hates the countertop and current sink anyway, #2 won. So it will have to wait for awhile, as money is… Non existent would be a good word Lol!
While we did that, hubby hung the ceiling fan in the kitchen.

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And then they finished the laundry room floor.

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At this point we needed to go buy drywall screw’s before stuff closed, so we took off for Clarinda.

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And then we went to…

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And then to hy-vee.

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And then home where I worked on tiling the inside of the sink cabinet

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and they brought in the washer.

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We’ve been using the brothers old apartment washer that hooks up to the kitchen sink, but it’s tiny and in the way, and I think it’s on last legs, so glad this is set up. Hubby and the brother need to move the dryer vent and such to get the dryer hooked up (it stacks on top of the washer), so until then we’re line drying still.
On Sunday, Dad managed to blow his radiator hose so we dumped the last cash in the had tank and headed for Coin.

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Hubby replaced it and as a thank you dad took us to Mondo’s.

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We did a quick trip to Walmart

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Then went back to his place and watched Dr. Who for a bit. Finally got ahold of Mel so we left the brother at dad’s to watch a World War II show and hubby and I went and saw her for awhile.

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Then we headed home, watched Captain America, and called it a do-nothing day.
And that’s all for me. Have a good one.
Jo :)

Progress is Nigh

Or so I keep telling myself. Okay, we got a fair bit done yesterday, so things are shaping up.
Hubby and the brother went to Red Oak for drywall, and I worked on book cover stuff. When they got back we had lunch.

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Hot beef.

This is actually one of those Hormel sandwich makers and some instant mashed potatoes. I ended up feeding must of the potatoes to hubby, but it was good.
After that I went on a hunt for my light box so I could do some commissioned drawing, and hubby and the brother started readying the wall for drywalling.

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You can see the chimney

Only trouble was, there’s not enough drywall screws left. So….

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Just barely held on

They used what they had and it will have to wait to finish it.
They also got the quarter round put up around the bathroom ceiling.

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We need to touch up the nail heads when we put the second coat on the window but it’s looking good.
By then I was done with my drawings, and has even located the printer/scanner (not hooked up yet) so I sanded and put a second coat of mud on the laundry room patch.

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Lumpy. Thank goodness for sanding.

We have been saving our mixed mud (we bought the economy bucket that you have to thin out with water) in an older bucket, and so I tried using that, only it was pretty thick, so the result is going to take extra sanding.
We also finally brought the bathroom sink in.

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The sink cabinet I worked so hard on!

And we finally got started on gluing down the laundry room floor.

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The glue has to sit before you put the flooring on it

The big experiment of the night was attempting baked pasta in an electric skillet.

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How did it work? Well it would have been better had it not had to sit for half an hour on “warm” while they did something with the floor. But it was okay. Not as good as oven baked. Someday we will get the kitchen walls done and hook up the stove.
After that it was two episodes of Tytania and then bed time. Ah! How exciting. But at least things are finally coming together.
And that’s all from me. I know, nothing exciting, but at least I’m blogging.
Have a good one!
Jo :)
P.S. and for no reason, here are the four things I drew, completely out of context.

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Another Day, Another Mess

Okay not that big of a mess, but the title was fun.
Yesterday started with hubby spending two hours filling out his application to be a jailer. Then we had to take it to Red Oak to hand it in. The last said a clipped “thank you” and disappeared before he could inquire about anything else.
After that we had to go to True Value for more floor adhesive and some kind of fancy square that does 45 degree angles like this:

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Not my photo

While he was looking for it, I snapped a photo of him in his job hunting attire which prompted several face book comments.

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Apparently he looks dumbfounded

Poor hubby. He’s talking about cutting his hair and I’m not thrilled about it, though in the end it’s HIS hair and he can do what he wants with it. He thinks – and he’s probably right – that it will make it easier to find a job, but I dunno. I’m not much of an anarchist or a hippie or any of the rest per se, but there are things worth standing up for and men’s right to have whatever length of hair they want is one of them. Women can have long hair and work in the same fields that men are told they must cut their hair for and it’s sexist bullshit. I’m personally willing for him to make less and make a hair statement, but he may not be, so I guess we’ll see.
We came home to Dad, who hung around until he realized his football game would be on soon, then he hightailed it back home. I got on the laptop to do some work, and hubby volunteered to sand the kitchen wall.
In our quest to paint the kitchen we have ended up stripping two of the three walls to bare plaster.

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<------Look left and right------>

And we agreed the third wall could just be lightly sanded (since the old paint is gloss) and then just painted over. Well hubby decided that hand sanding was for woosies, so he grabbed the orbital sander and….

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Schlop

He says the wall has been wet at some point in the past and so all of the paper etc. just ripped away, as did some of the plaster. Which means we need to drywall a chunk of it. So he spent some time neatly cutting the bad bit out.

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Lathes

Meanwhile the brother finished up the white in the bathroom

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You know it looks good because he's using a tiny brush

And they filled in the cracks on the laundry room floor.

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Durham's water putty - dries rock hard!

The stuff comes in a cool canister

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Looks so retro!

Oh, and the brother and I got the front porch light hung properly.

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Ta dah!

I got that at that tent sale last month for about a1/4 what it’s worth. Go Jo.
I’d show you what I’ve been working on, but my battery is low and it’s boring anyway, so I will end this for now and say have a good one.
Jo :)

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