Saturday, May 28, 2016

I LATER SAW THE DINGS IN THE BACK OF HIS HEAD

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How wonderful the cool air I thought to myself when outside with Pheebs for a few minutes in our morning's silent pre-dawn air.  Could see a partial Moon through the pines & was reminded of oh so many early morning hours in the American South-west over the past 10 years with crystal clear winter skies overhead & stars for as deep as one could see.  I miss those big open night skies.

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AROUND THE PARK’S POND

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Friday's humidity beat me up pretty good & by the end of the day with an assortment of aches & pains from moving furniture around again I had very little physical or mental energy left to put a post together Friday night.  My posts have a tendency to be way too long both in words & photos & sometimes become too overwhelming even for me.  At those times I do have to ask myself a very familiar question.  Why oh why oh why do I pour so much time & energy into this blog of mine.  Of course I already know the answer to that question each & every time it arises so there is no arguing with myself.  It is the way it is and for the most part despite my periodic discouragements I am glad it is the way it is & this Monday my blog will reach a milestone a long time coming. 

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As it turns out our new gas furnace install did not quite go off without a hitch.  Although the furnace & A/C work fine some kind of an anomaly occurred on the electrical end of things.  Late Thursday afternoon power to our kitchen & living room began snapping on & off in an erratic manner.  Definitely some kind of a problem in our electrical panel.  In order to keep our television/stereo running uninterrupted I had to run a long extension cord to a receptacle in our sunroom.  Jeff from Wise Energy came this morning at 9:30 to check things out but 3 hours before he got here Pheebs & I were already on the move.

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EVEN WITHOUT A GOOD RAIN IT IS AMAZING HOW FAST AREA CORN STALKS ARE JUMPING OUT OF THE GROUND

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AND SOME FIELD CROPS HAVE NOT YET EVEN GOT STARTED

Freshly out of the shower & still wet behind the ears me & the Pheebers had Libby’s wheels a rollin through the early morning’s peaceful countryside.  With coffee & muffin in hand we headed straight away to our ‘go to’ place the Hullett Marsh.  So serenely beautiful at that hour of the morning.  Pheebe just hit the ground a runnin she was so happy.  I hauled my tripod out of the Jeep, dusted it off, attached one of my cameras & headed off down the trail behind her.  Refreshingly cool night air still lay upon the land keeping Mosquitoe populations down.  By 8:30 I could feel the day’s heat & humidity building so knew it was time to head home & get ourselves inside out of the miserable stickiness to come.  We were soon basking in the amazing comforts of our home’s air conditioning.  Watching area weather news tonight I see ‘heat alerts’ were issued today.

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THE HULLETT MARSH LOOKS MORE LIKE NORTHERN ONTARIO THAN THE RURAL FARMLANDS OF HURON COUNTY HERE IN THE SOUTH-WESTERN REGION OF ONTARIO

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BY TAKING MY TIME TO USE A CAMERA TRIPOD TODAY  PHOTO CLARITY IS IMMEDIATELY NOTICEABLE

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BESIDES THE BIRD CAN YOU SEE 2 SNAPPING TURTLES RIGHT BEHIND IT

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I am sooooo much enjoying not having our TV on.  The few times I did check in with the news channels on the hour it was all the same grumping, yelling, & dangerously bombastic hot air.  I think it is so sad to see our society's moral standings & sense of common decency & respect for one another in such a wide open declining free fall.  A once proud society rapidly going down in flames.

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SEEING THESE 2 WALKING IN THE MARSH THIS MORNING I COULDN’T HELP BUT THINK ‘LIKE FATHER LIKE SON’

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PHEEBE WAITS PATIENTLY WHILE I FIDDLE & FUSS WITH MY TRIPOD

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TAKE YOUR TIME DAD I DON’T MIND WAITING, MOMS NOT GOING TO BE THERE WHEN WE GET HOME ANYWAY

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A few days ago Tom way up there in that Alaska place had a few concerns about our new gas furnace in regards to winds blowing out the pilot light.  I asked Jeff about that this morning & he said newer gas furnaces do not have pilot lights anymore & now use ‘glow plugs’ so that was good to know.

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EVEN SAW A COUPLE COW CLUSTERS ALONG THE WAY TODAY

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THIS WAS MY FAVORITE PHOTO TODAY

<<< SAW AN ODD LOOKING BIRDHOUSE TACKED ONTO A FENCE POST

Our good friend & neighbor Bruce dropped by Friday afternoon & tarred up a small leak we had around our skylight in the sunroom.  Today he is here finishing up an inside moulding job Richard had started a week ago.  Richard suffered a serious hand injury when the belt on his roto-tiller exploded & he is not yet able to use his left hand.

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THAT BE BRUCE WAY UP THAR ON THE ROOF

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I COULD DO THIS MYSELF AS IT’S NOT SO MUCH A FEAR OF HEIGHTS I HAVE AS IT IS A FEAR OF CLIMBING SHAKEY LADDERS LEANED AGAINST BUILDINGS 

DSC_0001Because of the heat & humidity it was a good day to stay inside & plug away at the re-organizing of our house again.  Bruce  using his ‘Chop Suey Saw’ worked away at the molding.  Thinking I was being helpful, kind & considerate on this hot humid day I turned on the overhead fan for Bruce.  Of course as soon as he stepped up on the stool with a piece of trim in hand the fan clobbered him on the back of the head.  Bruce being the staunch Navy Vet guy he is thought no problem & with an acute short term memory like mine minutes later stepped up on the same stool & got clobbered all over again.  Now he didn’t tell me about this at first but I later saw the dings in the back of his head…………

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HULLETT MARSH……LAND OF ENCHANTMENT

GROANER’S CORNER:((  Two blonde builders were working on a house. One blonde was on a ladder nailing. She'd reach into her nail pouch, pull out a nail, look at it, and either toss it over her shoulder or proceed to nail it into the wood. The other blonde couldn't stand it any longer and yelled up, "Why are you throwing some of the nails away?" The first blonde explained, "When I pull it out of my nail pouch, if it's pointed toward me I throw it away. If it's pointed toward the house, then I can use it!" The second blonde explained, "Don't throw away those nails that are pointed toward you! They're for the other side of the house!!"

Friday, May 27, 2016

YET NO INSPIRATION COULD I FIND

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CROW ON A BRANCH

I looked everywhere even in the farthest of corners, I dug deep inside & yet no inspiration could I find for writing a blog post tonight so with that said I’ll just leave you with…………… GROANER’S CORNER:(( It Was So Hot Today::

- Farmers were feeding their chickens crushed ice to keep them from laying boiled eggs.

-  Robins had to use potholders to pull worms out of the ground.

- It was so hot today that if we had been corn we'd have been a poppin!!

- And here’s my biggest fear, "what if I get faint from heatstroke and end up lying on the pavement and cook to death?"

Thursday, May 26, 2016

CAUGHT MYSELF A LUCKY BREAK THIS MORNING

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OUT FOR A WALK ON OUR PARK’S PINE TREE TRAIL EARLIER TODAY

Made sure Wednesday night the sliding patio door beside my chair leading to the porch was closed.  Didn't want to start the day off with another mad rascally Raccoon scramble but I did start the day off with a different kind of mad scramble anyway.  Not the raccoon but something from the sky this time……….

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OUR YELLOW DANDELIONS ARE GOING TO SEED

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Luckily I woke up at 4 a.m. & decided to listen to some quiet music instead of snapping on that brain numbing television.  About half a way through the first piece of music I became aware of a growing sound which after about 10 seconds didn't seem to fit with what I was listening to.  Probably took my mind another dozen seconds to all of a sudden put 2 and 2 together.  "Oh-No"............. RAIN!!!!  I was out of my chair in a flash & the scramble was on but here's where I caught myself a lucky break.

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OUR LILACS ARE IN FULL BLOOM NOW AND SMELL OH SOOOOOOO NICE:))

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I had checked the live feed Exeter radar weather map before going to bed & there was no sign of rain in our area anywhere but figured while my Wednesday night post was publishing I might as well move some of the furniture off the deck back into the sunroom.   Fortunately that is what I did so only 1 bedroom dresser left on the open deck & luckily I had a tarp laying nearby & quickly threw it over the top.  I knew the Motorhome door would be open so in my Gummy Bear PJ's I quickly hustled myself across the driveway through the soft falling rain & closed the rig's door double checking on my way the Jeeps windows which were for some unusual reason all the way up.  I knew both shed doors would be open so scrambled myself into the back yard closing both doors & checking for anything else sitting out along the way.   A minute later I was back in the house slightly soggy but once again stretched out in my comfy recliner surrounded by nice soft music.   The single rain cloud passing overhead had been gentle & instead of pouring down a deluge of water it only left us with a 20 minute lite shower.  Not enough to help area farmers with their newly planted crops but enough to set me scrambling out of my chair for the second morning in a row.  What is it they say about whatever happens twice will happen a third time.  Well it darn well better not but just in case I’m gonna get up extra early & sit quietly in my chair waiting for something to happen!!  

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HERE’S PHEEBS SHOWING OFF HER NEW JEEP PASSENGER SIDE SEAT COVER

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THIS LITTLE RED SQUIRREL IS FACE FIRST INTO THE SEEDS

There was already humidity in the cloudy air when Pheebs & headed off for a walk this morning about 7:30.  We were greeted with a lot of deep throated ‘Chug-R-Rums’ coming up from the Park’s pond.  Multitudes of Frogs must have hauled themselves up out of their muddy hibernation spots overnight.  So nice to hear them all Chug-R-Rumming in such sweet harmonious bliss.  Encountered our first Mosquitoes of the year as well & that snapped us back to reality & we had to cut our walk short & run fast for home.  Well Pheebs ran fast & I kinda did a brisk waddle.

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LOTS OF ‘CHUG-R-RUM’ FROGS IN THE PARK’S POND NOW

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Wise Energy's Matt & Jeff rolled in shortly after nine while I was out in the car-port painting some trim.  Now for you older readers out there notice I said Matt and Jeff and not Mutt & Jeff.  It was just a couple hours later at 11:10 while sneaking a quick rest in my recliner that I all of a sudden felt the house heating up & heard the smoke alarm go off.  Well not to worry, the boys had just fired up our new furnace for the first time.  Compared to our ill running 35 year old electric furnace I was amazed at the amount of heat hardily blowing out of the registers.  ‘Wowzers’ I thought to myself, we sure did make the right choice switching to gas.  A bigger & better blower as well & the whole set up is quieter.  Bonus.   The guys headed off for lunch and Jeff came back shortly after 2 o’clock to test the A/C.   Everything checked out A-OK and thank heavens for air conditioning:))

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NO NOT AUTUMN JUST SPRINGTIME COLORS

Decided to begin putting things back together by starting with the sunroom and I soon had our deck all cleaned off & most of the porch.  Things finally began to take shape and resemble some sort of logical madness again.  Still a ways to go but by golly we’re finally over the renovation hump.  However I couldn’t help but notice how faded & scruffy our deck planks have become & methinks I may have myself an outside deck painting project coming up soon.

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I LIKE WHEN OUR PINE TREE TRAIL FILLS IN & TAKES ON A MAGICAL TUNNEL EFFECT BUT i SEE I HAD BETTER GET BUSY WITH A WEE BIT OF TRAIL MAINTENANCE SOON

GROANER’S CORNER:(( Ever Wonder Where Some Of Those Old Sayings Came From??

“Houses had thatched roofs with thick straw-piled high and no wood underneath. It was the only place for animals to get warm, so all the cats and other small animals (mice, bugs) lived in the roof.  When it rained, it became slippery and sometimes the animals would slip and fall off the roof. Hence the saying, ‘It’s raining cats and dogs.’  There was nothing to stop things from falling into the house. This posed a real problem in the bedroom where bugs and other droppings could mess up your nice clean bed.
Hence, a bed with big posts and a sheet hung over the top afforded some protection. That’s how canopy beds came into existence.”

“The floor was dirt. Only the wealthy had something other than dirt. Hence the term, ‘dirt poor.’  The wealthy had slate floors that would get slippery in the winter when wet, so they spread thresh (straw) on the floor to help keep their footing.  As the winter wore on, they added more thresh until, when you opened the door, it would all start slipping outside. A piece of wood was placed in the entrance-way.  Hence, ‘a thresh hold.’”

“In those old days, they cooked in the kitchen with a big kettle that always hung over the fire. Every day, they lit the fire and added things to the pot.  They ate mostly vegetables and did not get much meat. They would eat the stew for dinner, leaving leftovers in the pot to get cold overnight and then start over the next day.
Sometimes stew had food in it that had been there for quite a while. Hence the rhyme, ‘Peas porridge hot, peas porridge cold, peas porridge in the pot nine days old.’   Sometimes they could obtain pork, which made them feel quite special. When visitors came over, they would hang up their bacon to show off.  It was a sign of wealth that a man could ‘bring home the bacon.’ They would cut off a little to share with guests, and would all sit around and ‘chew the fat.’”

“Those with money had plates made of pewter. Food with high acid content caused some of the lead to leach onto the food, causing lead poisoning death.  This happened most often with tomatoes, so for the next 400 years or so, tomatoes were considered poisonous.  Bread was divided according to status. Workers got the burnt bottom of the loaf, the family got the middle, and guests got the top, or the ‘upper crust.’”

“Lead cups were used to drink ale or whisky. The combination would sometimes knock the imbibers out for a couple of days.  Someone walking along the road would take them for dead and prepare them for burial.  They were laid out on the kitchen table for a couple of days and the family would gather around and eat and drink and wait and see if they would wake up.  Hence the custom of holding a ‘wake.’”

“In old, small villages, local folks started running out of places to bury people.  So they would dig up coffins and would take the bones to a bone-house, and reuse the grave.  When reopening these coffins, 1 out of 25 coffins were found to have scratch marks on the inside, and they realized they had been burying people alive.
So they would tie a string on the wrist of the corpse, lead it through the coffin and up through the ground and tie it to a bell.  Someone would have to sit out in the graveyard all night (‘the graveyard shift’) to listen for the bell.  Thus, someone could be ‘saved by the bell,’ or was considered a ‘dead ringer.’

“Most people got married in June because they took their yearly bath in May, and they still smelled pretty good by June.  However, since they were starting to smell, brides carried a bouquet of flowers to hide the body odor.
Hence the custom today of carrying a bouquet when getting married.”

“Baths consisted of a big tub filled with hot water.  The man of the house had the privilege of the nice clean water, then all the other sons and men, then the women, and finally the children. Last of all the babies.  By then the water was so dirty you could actually lose someone in it. Hence the saying, ‘Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water!’”

“They used to use urine to tan animal skins, so families used to all pee in a pot. Once a day it was taken and sold to the tannery.  If you had to do this to survive, you were ‘piss poor.’  But worse than that were the really poor folks who couldn’t even afford to buy a pot. They ‘didn’t have a pot to piss in’ and were considered the lowest of the low.”

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

PHEEBS & I STARTED OUR DAY OFF WITH A MAD SCRAMBLE PLUS CARPET LAYERS & FURNACE INSTALLERS ALL AT ONCE

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It was 5 a.m. and I was still asleep when suddenly jolted awake by a speeding noise going right by my recliner where I was sleeping next to our patio door leading to the back porch.  Being a warm night I had left the patio door open with only the screen door closed.  Years ago Checkers had plowed right through that screen after a cat on our porch one night & we have never bothered getting it fixed.  The screen still hangs neatly in place but Pheebs can go in & out the bottom section easily & that big barking noise streaking past my chair about hundred & fifty miles an hour had been Pheebs in hot pursuit of what I quickly determined to be a rascally Raccoon right outside on the deck.  Quickly stumbling to my feet & heading out the door I knew it was a Raccoon right away when I heard the sounds of little paws scrambling up one our big backyard pine trees.  Quite a way to start the day but it was Okay because I was close to getting up anyway.  Say, I wonder if that rascally Raccoon was trying to sneak in & make off with my peanut butter jar.  Now that could have got nasty!!

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PHOTOS FROM OUR MONDAY MORNING WALK IN THE HULLETT MARSH 

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ONE MUST ALWAYS KEEP A SHARP EYE OUT FOR CRITTERS & SOMETIMES ONE ONLY SEES A PART OF THEM…..HEY WAIT A MINUTE THAT TAIL LOOKS FAMILIAR

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Had myself a nice break from routine Tuesday night when I didn't bother to turn the TV on after posting my blog.  Turned out all the lights & just sat in my chair listening to music.  I think over time TV habits become so ingrained in us we become addicted to the tube regardless of what's on.  This morning was a good example of that again as I snapped it on only to once more be assaulted by loud annoying repetitive commercials interspersed with all the news channels  tunnel-visioned on the political madness going on south of the border.   In total disgust I quickly snapped the TV off and surrounded myself with music again.  Yes indeed, a much preferable way to start my day.

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THIS SERIES OF PHOTOS SHOWS SOME CANADA GEESE TAKING OFF & LANDING THIS PAST MONDAY MORNING AT THE MARSH

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Been a long time since I made my own coffee but make it I did this morning & Holy Smokes if it didn't turn out to be the right darn color and even tasted good too.  Now how did that happen I asked myself. 

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No sunlight poking through the pines so knew an advancing cloud cover had moved into the area overnight.  Figured I had better double check all the stuff we have temporarily stored outside on our porches, deck & carport.  Rain was on it's way for sure and could be upon us by the end of the day and stay for awhile.

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A COUPLE LOCAL DAIRY FARMS

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KIND OF A BEEFY LOOKING BUNCH HERE

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Furnace installer guys from Wise Energy arrived right on the crack of 9 a.m. with 2 vans & immediately set to work on our furnace switcheroo.  One fella worked away on prepping the new gas furnace while the other guy busied himself temporarily decommissioning the A/C unit outside.  It was a good working morning for them with temps hanging around in the low 60’s.  (it later changed & got humid) And mentioning the weather as I of course I have a habit of doing I just noticed all the rain days ahead have been cancelled & thank heavens for that because the action around our place was about to heat up. 

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THAT’S OUR NEW FURNACE OUTT HERE

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OUR OLD SET-UP WITH THE A/C ON TOP & FURNACE BELOW

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WE HAVE 3 ROOMS OF STUFF PILED EVERYWHERE & THIS IS OUR FRONT PORCH RIGHT NOW

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FRONT PORCH & DECK

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OUR BACK PORCH

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FRONT DECK

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AND THAT’S THE TRAP DOOR LEADING UNDER OUR UNIT WHERE ONE OF THE GUYS HAD TO CRAWL DOWN & UNDER NEATH TO MAKE SOME CONNECTIONS

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OUR DOUBLE CARPORT SURE HAS COME IN HANDY FOR TEMPORARILY STORING STUFF & SO GLAD WE DECIDED TO PUT A CEMENT FLOOR IN THERE A YEAR AGO

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LOTS OF STUFF PILED IN MY FORMER BEDROOM

I had just sat down in my recliner in order to stay out of the furnace installers way when the phone rang.  “Oh-No” it was the carpet installer & he was on his way planning to get the last 2 rooms carpeted.  What ensued was me immediately racing around like a manic Magpie moving Kelly’s mattress & box spring plus bed frame out of that bedroom along with a dresser.  Biggest challenge was in finding where to put everything.  Then it was quickly into the sunroom right beside where the carpet installers were working to get everything out of that room as well & onto the porch outside making sure of course that both furnace installers & carpet layers all had room enough to maneuver.  I was able to get everything re-located with the aide of a fridge cart except for one heavy dresser in Kelly’s room & of course the computer table.  Those things I needed the carpet guy to help me with.

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AND THEN THE CARPET GUY SHOWED UP

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CARPET GUY STARTS WITH KELLY’S ROOM FIRST

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KELLY’S ROOM IS FINISHED

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NEXT CAME THE SUNROOM

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SO GLAD I DIDN’T HAVE TO DISCONNECT ALL THESE WIRES & PLUGS…..WE JUST CARRIED EVERYTHING OUT ONTO THE DECK JUST THE WAY IT WAS

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SUN ROOM IS ALL DONE:))

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PHEEBE LIKES THE NEW CARPET

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HERE COME THE FELLERS WITH THE NEW FURNACE

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It was shortly before noon when the carpet fella showed up & right away set to work on Kelly’s room.  He had that one done in about 40 minutes.  Luckily the furnace guys had another short service call & that enabled the carpet guy to also finish laying the carpet in our sunroom.  Good job on both rooms & he was gone before the furnace fellas returned shortly after 2.  They worked away for the rest of the afternoon & will return in the morning to finish up the job.  All those 3 guys worked a lot harder than I did today but I bet none of them is as tired as I am tonight.  Damn this age thing!!

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HERE’S A 7 LEGGED 2 HEADED PONY PHEEBS & SPOTTED MONDAY MORNING

GROANER’S CORNER:((  A Canadian is walking down the street with a case of beer under his arm. His friend Doug stops him and asks, “Hey Bob! Whatcha get the case of beer for?”  “I got it for my wife, eh,” answers Bob.  “Oh!” exclaims Doug, “Good trade.”

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Did you hear about the war between Newfoundland and Nova Scotia ?  The Newfies were lobbing hand grenades; the Nova Scotians were pulling the pins and throwing them back.

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In Canada , we have two seasons… six months of winter and six months of poor snowmobiling.

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A Quebecer staying in a hotel in Edmonton phoned room service for some pepper.  “Black pepper, or white pepper?” asked the concierge.“Toilette pepper!” yelled the Quebecer.