Warning: Weirdness and personal details contained within. Mostly weirdness. You've been warned.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Yoshi update

I was just looking back through my last few posts, my last update about Yoshi was a while ago.  He's now grown a lot and is bigger than Roly.  He's also turned out to be a medium hair kitty.  His armpit hair is super long, and he has tufts of fluff sticking out half an inch between his back toes.  His tail, which is really long, is very soft and fluffy.  He likes to play with feather toys like the one behind his head there, is pretty cuddly, and loves sleeping on the end of the bed if we leave the door open at night.  Other than stealing the other cats' food and trying to play or cuddle with them constantly (Roly doesn't want Yoshi within reach, and Gizzie will play most of the time but doesn't really want to cuddle with him), he's a really good kitty.
Yoshi's fluffy belly

It's a Christmas miracle!

Oh hi!  You might (not) remember me from such blogs as this one, where I used to post things once in a while.  Fell off the earth for a bit there.

So, new house.  6 months ago, that is.  Here are some of those pictures I promised:

This is the back yard before we made any changes (this is in November, you'll notice the lack of snow).
The back yard when we first moved in
More lefter of the first picture

And this is after we took out the unsightly, rotting, chicken-wire-on-the-bottom-half fence.  And the deer feeder with the wasp nest in it.  And got rid of some of the overgrown trees/shrubs.  And mowed the lawn.

 I helped Jay build a garden cage to keep the deer and rabbits out and the cats in.  He also built a shed (you can see the start of it in the first after picture there).

Here's the before and after pictures of the bathroom facelift:
Before: Removing the hideous wallpaper.  Also, you can kind of see the leaves that were on the light fixture
After: This is more our style
I painted the mirrors flat black with some silver.  Jay cut the leaves off the light fixture and ground it smooth where they'd been, then I painted that flat black with a light sprinkling of silver.  We had thought about replacing both, but we would have had to fix the spots on the wall where they attached, and Jay had already worked hard to get the wall mudded smoothly enough to be paintable.  Did you know that when builders put up wallpaper, they don't bother making the wall look pretty, or even priming it?  We found that out the hard way.  Also, it was cheaper and easier to just use what was already there.

Mirror before
Mirror after
The house is pretty much in the same shape as when we bought it, except slightly worse.  The leak by one of the back doors, which we were aware of when we bought the place and thought was just by the door, actually extends all the way across the rear living room.  It's due to a crack between the foundation and the brick, and when rain drives in really hard the water comes in and seeps up through the living room hardwood.  This has only happened once so far, and it's been an unusually rainy year, so we're hoping it will hang in there till it stops raining/dries out and we can fix it.  Unfortunately, after realizing this, I got to looking at the rest of the hardwood in the house and realized that the same thing must have happened before in the dining room.  We thought, as did the inspector pre-purchase, that there had been a leak but that the previous owners had fixed it.  Apparently not.  So there's that.

As well, Jay had been playing around with the sprinkler system, trying to see where the different lines were, and left the valve on but unused.  Come to find out a month later when the utility company emailed me, there must be a leak somewhere - it used about 4 times the amount of water as usual.  So yeah, we turned that back off pretty quick.

We also had a bit of a scare, Jay was puddling around in the garage and noticed one of the cats sniffing at something:
Ever since then I've been rather paranoid.  More paranoid, that is.

Otherwise, we really like it here.  There are tons of wildflowers (aka pretty flowering weeds) in the backyard and general area, as well as wildlife.
lizard basking in the sun on the wood pile
Roly watching the deer during the very brief 3 days of  snow this winter
My garden is growing - the things that came up are doing pretty well, at any rate.  Not sure if I had some bad seeds, but my first round of beans didn't show up, only a couple of the carrots came up and they died off pretty quick, and the 4 swiss chard plants are sad.  But my beets are doing well, the summer squash is good, and the tomato plant is taking over the world.  The constant rains have definitely helped; until they started I didn't really have much coming up.  Here's Gizzie in the half-garden/half-weed/newly planted grass:
I have since pulled up most of the weeds in the foreground, they're mostly tree-bits.  We cut down, but didn't root out, the scrubby trees that were originally there, and it's probably going to be a constant battle to keep them from coming back.  The grass seed we put in there is doing well though.  The cats like it out there but still long to be out and free.  With the rampant cacti and scorpions.  We're only a bit protective of our babies.  

We also replaced the fence in our house in Fort Worth, which we're renting out at the moment.  It used to look like the parts of the fence that you can see in the picture below - old and rotting.  We replaced the rotting wood posts with metal ones, and put up the same panels that had been there before.
Replacing the fence
New fence and the shed Jay built last year
Turns out we should have gotten approval from the community association before replacing both the shed and fence.  Oops.  Not going back to do it now.  They were aggravating jerks when we tried to get approval for adding a covered patio in the back yard so I don't feel bad.

We also went on a cruise at the end of last month, but I'll save that for another post.  Hopefully it won't take as long as this one did to put in.  Sorry about that.