Thursday, September 22, 2011

Storage Shelves for the Basement

The week before I hurt my back, I found time to put up storage shelves along the newly painted wall.  I felt just like an excited little kid putting them together. 

The thought I might be able to use my sewing room for its actual use just made me giddy.  Since last fall the sewing room looked like a hoarder lived there with little paths allowing you to pass through to another area.  On the morning before I put my back out, I transferred all the boxes pictured on to the new shelving. 

Sometime this winter I go through all the boxes and determine what can be thrown out and reorganized rest.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Way Laid for the Moment

For the last week I have been ordered to slay off the roof since I wrenched my back on September 11. How did I achieve this? Well I was sitting on the roof scraping paint off the wall. Trying to keep your balance on the roof and keep both hands free (one to hold the heat gun and the other to hold the scraper) is a feat. I twisted my body in funny positions and aggravated a minor back injury to a major one. I spent most of last week off from work barely able to get out of bed. I guess four to six hours a day for four days in a row was more than my body could stand.

I did get most of the scrapping done with only about 2 hours left to do. My biggest problem is that most of the caulking along the roof and wall needs to be replaced before winter comes. I can leave the rest of the work until next spring. I hopefully I will be able to get back on the roof in the next two weeks to caulk the roof line with removable caulk for the winter then next spring I can properly prepare the wall by sanding and priming it before applying the permanent caulk. I also removed all the old glazing from the window on this wall so I will most likely be using the removable caulk there too.

The small area on the wall left to scrap.
Roof eve area left.
My brother is visiting me for the next two weeks and will be helping me clean up the yard for winter but he is not a handyman when it comes to working on the house. I am more afraid of him falling off the roof than I am going up there to do the needed roof caulking for the winter. Yesterday I received a notice from Burpee’s that my raspberry plants are coming in the mail this week so Art will also be digging the holes so we can plant them too this week.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

It’s Done!

I finished painting and staining the deck on the last day of August. All I needed to do was unpack the new wrought iron furniture

and hang the sherpherd hook and lantern brackets.

I decided to spray paint the brackets the same accent color I am painting the screen and storm windows. They were finely ready to hang last Friday. The finishing touch came in the mail yesterday. The previous owner left lanterns with candles in them but I found solar Arts & Crafts lanterns to replace them and they look perfect.

The umbrella fabric needs to be replaced and that is my current upholstery project. Here is a picture of the new cover. I was checking the fit before I start covering the seams and umbrella edge with dark green binding. The umbrella should have the new cover on by mid-October.

To celebrate the finished deck I pulled this out of my pantry.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Labor Day Weekend

Over Labor Day Weekend, I was planning on spending just Friday canning tomatoes but things changed and I spend the entire weekend preserving food. I started by collecting the last of my 2009 whole canned tomatoes and reprocessing them into 6 quarts of tomato juice. Then I took 10 quarts from the 2010 whole canned tomatoes, made vegetable juice from them for a total of 8 quarts. On Saturday at the Dodgeville Farmer’s Market I brought large chili pepper for a Canned Tomato Salsa recipe I found on Simply Recipes web site. The recipe says it makes about 5 pints but I got 13 ½-pint jars of canned salsa. The previous weekend I tried Simply Recipes Tomatillo Salsa Verde and it was great. I used my new pressure cooker to can this salsa.

Once I finished with the juice and salsa, I started roasting tomatoes in the broiler, removing the skins and placing them in quarts jars to can. I roasted both paste and regular tomatoes and ended up with 7 quarts of each type. I still had some tomatoes left some I roasted them up and made “Hot and Spicy Chili Sauce” to use on hamburgers and sausages. This gave me 15 ½-pint of chili for my pantry. Then I pulled the last of the 2009 strawberry and rhubarb from my freezer and made jam for a total 3 pints of strawberry and 12 pints of strawberry rhubarb jam.

In between all the canning I did find sometime on Labor Day to wash the basement floor and apply hydraulic cement on possible leaks in the floor. Next Monday I can start painting that section of the floor.

I still want to roast another 5 quarts each of the paste and regular tomatoes before I call it an end to the canning season.  I am still picking bean, broccoli, zucchini, eggplant, and peppers and freezing them.  My winter squashes are dying off and soon will be ready storage in my basement pantry.  The gardening season may last until the end of the month if I am lucky and the weather remains mild.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Things are Moving Along in the Basement!

The floor along the east basement wall is now painted. I finished putting the fourth coat on the floor at 4:50 AM on Tuesday before going to work. Now I need to allow the paint to cure one week before I can set up my shelving.

Last night I started to move the jelly cabinet and other items so I can start to prepare a new section of the floor for paint. I noticed there is an area by the chimney which needs a coat of hydraulic cement before I can start painting it. So I will do that over Labor Day weekend and then I can paint it the following weekend. I cannot believe I might finally finish working on the east basement wall section this fall and I will be only six months late of my goal. I still will have the 2/3 of the north wall left to do and that is where the laundry tub, washer and dryer are located.

PS: I done painting the deck but need I want to put out the new furniture and put the hanging baskets up before I show it off.