20 hours ago
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
The seeds are ready. Most of the flower buds have fallen off of the seeds and the flower has reached a level that promotes drying. I cut them off the stem and have set them on the front porch upside down to dry. The drying process takes just four days and four nights outside in the open air. The flowers have been placed in this manner to detour curious birds from steeling the fruit of my labor.
Posted by littlejim at 7:27 AM
Monday, October 4, 2010
Morgan has spent the last couple weeks going through her day with little sleep. She has not only had to feed Gwen but she is keeping up on house work and bringing home work to do in her spare time. Even though all this is going on, she still takes time for herself.
Posted by littlejim at 10:21 AM
Sunday, October 3, 2010
The sunflowers have given my family great joy as we walked through the back yard. When pearing out of our bedroom window my eyes are drawn to their natural beautly. As of today I have noticed that a couple of the beautifull white seeds have fallen from the flower. The meat is good though not dryed. Almost ready to make some tasty seads.
Posted by littlejim at 2:15 PM
Saturday, October 2, 2010
The bag is in a state of fading. Yet the bag is still very crinkly. Again on the news people are claiming that these bags, though environmentally friendly, eating quietly out of them remains a neusance. My theory is that the bags composition will never let it become less noisy. Even when it becomes broken down and start to break apart it will still crinkle in your ears.
Posted by littlejim at 12:48 PM
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Saturday, September 25, 2010
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
She is finally wth us! Gwen was born September 22, 2010 at 6:45pm. She weighed in at 7lbs 3.1oz and measured 19.75" long. After over 26 hours of laber combined with just 25 minutes of actuall pushing; Morgan was the most physically exhausted she has ever been. But of course the excitement of her arival overpowered the exhaustion and the bonding began.
Posted by littlejim at 6:45 PM
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Show yourselves. How many followers of my blog are there? I do not know unless you post comments. I encourage you to create a google account and say hello. I know of only ten active followers and as many as twenty to thirty people who have looked at least once. Its free to sign up and will not give you any problems or unwanted things; just a way to say hi. I look forward to hearing from you all. Thankyou for your following.
Posted by littlejim at 8:17 PM
Saturday, August 14, 2010
Friday, August 13, 2010
I was out for a little jog today by the mercury polluted ponds at the base of the mountain of the Devil, when I came across this beautiful dog. From afar I knew there was something different about it. As I wiped the sweat from my eyes I noticed that it seemed to have an unusually long tongue. I gave the dog a little wave as I ran by and it just sat there with an unusual look in its eye. I pondered what I saw for the rest of the 10 mile loop. As I did this I recalled a story from a distant friend of the effects of mercury in the streams south of Reno making life altering birth defects/mutations to adapt to this new way of life. One might think that losing teeth and having a long tongue is a bad thing. In reality it is very purposeful. When trying to find grubs to eat in between the rocks, the teeth not only get in the way of the long tongue but become useless for chewing as grubs only need to be swallowed and digested. Also during this global warming epidemic; the tongue must be kept inside the mouth as not to loose vital fluids through evaporation. So next time you see weird and unusual things in this world; remember we are all going to die.
Posted by littlejim at 8:12 PM
Thursday, August 12, 2010
Friendship is a interesting thing. Think about the way that you became friends: you sat next to each other in math class; asked for a little milk from your neibor; became a co-worker; a hobbie; and by way of a friend. Friendship is a form of a relationship. You usually go through a lot together. You make each other laugh, angry, mad, cry, and even crazy. You sometimes see each other all the time and then may even go great lenghts of time apart. Some times it ends in a bad way and never speak to each other agian. But the coolest and most common thing about friendship is that no matter what happens you are always refered to as a friend. So remember that no matter what you do to each other; you are still friends and friends are the next best thing to family.
Posted by littlejim at 9:32 PM
Monday, August 9, 2010
Ah the beauty of blue water. This is why Morgan has waited so long to have this tub in her house. It is long enough to lay in as well as having a 14” water depth. But lurking beyond what the eye can see is a leak. Yes this beautiful bath leaks. But it is not the baths fault, but the plumber who installed it. So yet another phone call to make to get him back out here to fix it. Thank God it is under warranty and the fix will be free. Yet more waiting for the soak.
Posted by littlejim at 11:21 PM
Sunday, August 8, 2010
Did you know that the sunflower is the most popular flower to be grown in a homeowner’s garden in the US? Well according to some data, this is true. Thankfully I am not a part of this statistic. This sunflower is a donation from a friendly neighborhood bird. Now I am just waiting for the seeds to come!
Posted by littlejim at 8:08 PM
Saturday, August 7, 2010
As the bag enters into the second month I am reminded of how long a month can feel. With temperatures still averaging 62’F-98.5’F with a high of 100’F, the bag is now definitely showing signs of wear. The bag has not weakened any but the colors are defiantly fading away. May the journey continue.
Posted by littlejim at 2:36 PM
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
That is a question for you to ask. But do you know what is inside your filter? I don’t expect you to cut open your brand new filter to find out but remember that there are different filters for different reasons. So make sure you do your homework before you put one in to make sure it is filtering what you want, ie: taste, rust/grit, chlorine… These filters were removed from a friend’s house today. The one on the left is from her insta-hot and the other is from her refrigerator inline in her copper line.
Posted by littlejim at 5:20 PM
Monday, August 2, 2010
This Mud Dauber lived in our porch. Today on my way to Home Depot, I walked out to find him flying around. I had a notepad in hand and used it to swat him against the window and into a daddy long leg web. Being dazed, he gave the time needed for the spider to sprint out and subdue it and weave it into a tasty morsel. Then the spider drug its dinner to the corner to eat in peace. Yet another good deed done.
Saturday, July 31, 2010
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
With temperatures soaring into the low 100’F range today; I was on a time crunch to get painting. I managed to get our chair rail and crown molding for our bathroom painted today. I need to do a little sanding and fine tuning prior to the last coat. Then the chair rail can go in and the crown can get cut and installed. Now we just need to get the door casing!
Monday, July 26, 2010
What does it mean to take your pulse when it is at rest? Does it mean that it gets tired and takes a nap? Does it stop everything; well no you would be dead. But this morning I awoke to the phone ringing to find that my heart was indeed at rest. I took it several times and found that it was around 46 – 48 bpm (beats per minute). So the journey on my feet has taken me towards a better overall cardio condition. How far can I take it? Only time will tell.
Posted by littlejim at 8:25 AM
Sunday, July 25, 2010
The bathroom has transformed completely over the last week. It now has an ocean themed wall paper professionally installed by a good friend. He matched all the pictures and seams up perfectly! The chair rail is cut and ready for paint and the mirror has returned accompanied by our beautiful lights. Morgan’s visions in her head are coming true in real life.
Posted by littlejim at 7:03 PM
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Again with temperatures 104’F during the day and 69’F at night; the bag has held up very well. For those of you new to this, my experiment is showing the decomposition timeline of a bag thrown to the side of the freeway. This is not to replicate the factories process, nor is sponsored by Sun Chips. Stay tuned for the long haul.
Posted by littlejim at 10:38 PM
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Monday, July 12, 2010
Yes it is true; I have just received a driver’s permit and only am able to drive with a approved driver in the car. But wait, at 28 years old? Yes, its true. Instead of a permit to drive a car; I now have a permit to drive a Class B truck with tank and haz-mat endorsements. The good thing is that I passed 6 written tests today; the bad news is that I now only have two months to get the drive test done. No big deal as long as all schedules mesh and I don’t fail. And on the bright side, I now have a picture of me depicting a prison inmate.
Posted by littlejim at 10:32 PM
Sunday, July 11, 2010
Today Morgan and I planned and drilled 90 holes for the adjustable shelving. We also drilled 10 holes to affix the drawer pulls and door knobs. We purchased two new drill bits to drill clean holes. We guessed the right size for the knob screw holes but the shelving pin holes were a little bit sloppy. Believe it or not we went from a sloppy ¼” hole to a slightly snug 15/32” drill bit that left me using a hammer to help persuade the pins in nicely. All in all the cabinet is turning out nicely and will look even better fully trimmed out.
Posted by littlejim at 10:24 PM
Saturday, July 10, 2010
This past week the Sun Chips bag has been through some weather. The temperatures have ranged from as low as 65’F and as high as 104’F! But this coupled with humidity’s ranging from 10% to as high as 73%; I’d have to say that this weather is no ware close to that of a compost pile. So any early predictions on how long it will take? My preliminary estimation is that it will take an additional month too two months minimum. The journey continues.
Posted by littlejim at 10:13 PM
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Morgan has been dreaming of having this wallpaper up in her bathroom for years. It has the perfect backdrop of smooth walls. It will be framed in painted chair rail and crown molding above. We have taken the precaution of moisture destruction by installing a Tim Allan approved exhaust fan. This is one of the only areas that I have hired out due to our inability to apply wallpaper nicely and the fact that this wall paper is no longer available. It has been a productive week that has presented glimpses to a future finished bathroom. Good day.
Posted by littlejim at 6:14 PM
Monday, July 5, 2010
It has been exactly four months since Morgan and I demoed the bathroom beyond the point of no return. During this time Morgan has been living with her parents for yet the second time since she originally moved away. During this four month period I have removed every last bit of the old plumbing from the alley all the way to the vents and water pipes. Everything in the bathroom was completely removed besides the sub floor. I then have slowly put everything back with new parts and pieces. It has been a long journey lengthened by work and overtime. But I am happy to say that tonight Morgan has a functional toilet and is comfortably sleeping back in her own bed. Yes she has returned home! It has been worth all the hard work to see her return to her home. Now the finish work continues…
Posted by littlejim at 10:31 PM
Saturday, July 3, 2010
In today’s world we are being bombarded with the term “green”. It is not just a color anymore. Today “green” is a term used for anything and everything that is supposed to conserve, save, or just simply make our lives less damaging. Yesterday during lunch I noticed that we had a Sun Chips bag that is biodegradable. I had seen the commercial and I was under the impression that the bag would biodegrade in 14 weeks. As I found out via the website; this is possible by the bag being in a compost pile were internal temperatures maintaining 130F for those 14 weeks. They state that this is real world testing; I disagree.
So today I placed my empty Sun Chips bag safely in my back yard nestled in some wild grass. I am taking you on a journey of the real life of a Sun Chips Biodegradable bag when tossed to the roadside. This bag will be monitored weekly to maintain its position and optimal light exposure. Photos and all pertinent information about the process will be posted here for your knowledge and enjoyment. Generation “green” or “red”; time will only tell.
Posted by littlejim at 11:25 PM
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Today was another exciting day filled with painting, cutting, and rounded out by sealing the tile. The tile had to be grouted and cured for 72 hours before it could be sealed. As most of you know; that was about two weeks ago. So needless to say, it was ready to be sealed. I had to do a little cleanup first. Throughout the past couple of weeks I have managed to accumulate dirt, wood shavings, wood filler, paint, and as some of you know, arm hair. So after a thorough cleaning I laid down a nice coat of sealer over the tile and grout. It turned out fine with no bubbles to speak of. I then went outside and washed up. I regrettably used some lacquer thinner to clean my hands which left them in a gooey mess. So after a few concoctions of chemicals later, I had 99% of the paint and sealer removed from my hands. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome…
Posted by littlejim at 6:00 PM
Monday, June 28, 2010
Morgan and I took a little time this evening to go down to our favorite river and snap some photos of her. As we showed up she noticed that there were some geese feeding on the grass near the river. We walked by as she told them not to hiss at her with no success. I put a empty hand held in a fist out to one of the mothers and she came up and gave me a little friendly nibble. Morgan is doing great with her pregnancy and the doc still gives her a perfect 10.
Posted by littlejim at 11:05 PM
Sunday, June 27, 2010
I was thinking of how many miles I had on my New Balance Running shoes. I purchased them in 2003 during my academy. In the academy alone I was running eight miles on Mondays and three too four the rest of the five days. Now as of late I have been running four too six miles a few times a week. I figured that I have at least one thousand running miles if not somewhere over fifteen hundred. Now I am interested in running some half marathons and even throwing in a full one. My hurdle that I am facing is buying shoes that fit and support my feet correctly. So if any of you marathon runners out there reading this have any suggestions, feel free to show your support. Good night.
Posted by littlejim at 10:34 PM
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
Do you know what 94 redwood boards, 284 staples, and one tube of liquid nails gets you? It yields the backdrop of wainscoting that will be the lower half of our bathroom walls. It was a long tedious process, but well worth it. To finish this off I need to secure the cabinet to the wall and then install the baseboard. After this I will putty all the holes and then a nice coat of white will be applied. The space is definitely getting smaller. Just wait until everything is in; the pictures don’t do it justice on just how small it is. The end is near!
Posted by littlejim at 8:00 PM
Monday, June 21, 2010
Today I finished cutting all my wainscoting and sanded all the board to check for blemishes. Then I took out my 68er to go ride a great ten mile loop dirt trail along Lake Shasta with Morgan’s cousin TJ. He has this beautiful example of a mountain bike that rides like a dirt bike without a motor. Absolutely amazing! The weather has been beautiful and the trails even have some muddy sections left. All in all a great day.
Posted by littlejim at 11:14 PM
Sunday, June 20, 2010
Saturday, June 19, 2010
This type of paneling is a not so simple way to dress up your bathroom. Not only does it come in long strips that you have to cut down, but to top it off there are usually splits at both ends requiring two cuts per board rather than one. But when it comes to applying it to the wall, that is the strait forward part. Literally I mean it needs to be strait and you move forward through the project with every board. So tomorrow is fathers day and I will get a little done but it seems that this project will be for Monday. So stay tuned folks.
Posted by littlejim at 10:00 PM
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
I usually reserve a reflection/past looking story for Sunday’s but today I will not wait. Today I have nothing new to tell you but the white cabinet that is for my bathroom is in its place. I will show you when the photo op is more view worthy. The picture we have here though is of my Grandpa’s shower that I tiled a couple years ago. This project was very fun getting both these six inch deep niches in and set perfect. Many things went into this design: two different heights for different types of bottles, sloped slightly for drainage, perfect height for optimal product retrieval, and all the grout lines blend together. Another job completed with many more in line.
Posted by littlejim at 2:07 PM
Monday, June 14, 2010
Late last night thanks to the compassion of my neighbors I finished cutting and laying all 42 tiles in our bathroom at 10:15pm. Today I awoke to see that not one tile had moved during my sleep. No they aren’t supposed to move but weirder things have been know to happen on this earth. So after all the shims were removed and the grout lines had been cleaned and inspected for any flaws; it was time to grout. Mixing the grout was just like all the many times I had done before. But the one thing that was different was that this tile was 5/8” thick. And with approx. 1/4” grout lines, this equals a lot of grout. It requires a lot more force to get the grout fully down into the lines fully and evenly and then scrape it off. After it was done I cleaned up and waited a half hour to set up and then removed all the excess. Then waited again another little bit to do the final wiping. Just in case you have never done grout before, the final wiping takes forever! The goal is a haze free tile. So now that I have written on about as long as it took me to do the tile, today is over. Now I look pretty and am off to Morgan’s ballet recital. You should see the excitement in these words that I am speaking. You don’t, too bad.
Posted by littlejim at 6:12 PM
Sunday, June 13, 2010
There is a difference between a good tile setter and a mediocre one. One thing is that they consider the pattern and layout of the tile before they even begin to cut. With every tile job you need to consider the beginning and end point; the squareness of the walls; and where is the eye going to be directed. The worst thing you can have is after getting to your focal point of the room and realizing you have left a ½” angled sliver to look at. Also is many tile there is a pattern/or color variance tile to tile. In this picture you will notice that I have made the patterns flow and work together to make the whole thing look like a piece of art. So next time you walk into a tiled room; take a look and see what design elements were used to create the space.
Posted by littlejim at 2:46 PM
Saturday, June 12, 2010
The hardybacker is layed down and ready for the thinset and screwing process. I used my new sheetrock inside corner maker tonight to achieve profesional corners from a amatures hands. After the vertical corners dry I will apply the same treatment to the seiling corners. With three more days off the work must go on. Oh and some sleep too.
Posted by littlejim at 11:37 PM
Friday, June 11, 2010
After a full day of leveling the floor, getting new plywood, running errands, running to my moms and back (~6miles), and sitting in the river. My neighbor and I spent two hours putting a skim coat over the whole ceiling and the walls. Now that is was 11:30 at night we called it a day. But the good thing is that the walls look incredibly level. Now they need a good sanding and then one last ultra skim coat that will just fill all the little nicks and imperfections. Then it will be time for primer and paint. Getting closer!
Posted by littlejim at 11:56 PM
Thursday, June 10, 2010
Sunday, June 6, 2010
Many of you have thought “what took him so long this weekend?” Well what some of you may not know is that Morgan and I were married 5 years ago this past Friday the 4th of June. Well, this took us to dinner and lunch yesterday. And when the bathroom is done a small trip is order as well. So today I awoke and ate some nutritious breakfast and enjoyed a cup of home brewed coffee. Then with the help of my overly gracious neighbor we were able to finish all the final touches and insulate and sheetrock the walls. It went well but today was probably the muggiest day in Redding’s history. So with the help of a fan and a hot halogen light, we stayed nice and sweaty. Now, its time to go back to work. Next on the list is doing the floor. Oh, and yes the bathroom looks as small as it is. It is only 72” X 79”. But we are making due with what we have. Bigger is not always better, just nicer feeling.
Saturday, June 5, 2010
Friday, June 4, 2010
This evening the clouds broke and the sun peeked through. I had a spur of the moment idea. I took off my flip-flops and replaced them with my running shoes and socks. These shoes are no stranger to pounding the pavement as they started life running in my 2003 Academy. I trekked off toward the infamous Sundial Bridge. As I stepped on to the bridge I was struck with beautiful post rain fog blanketing the river. I made my way past the few others enjoying the weather to the trail that leads up the ½ mile trail up to the top of the bluffs to Hilltop. Two miles and a hill were behind me with four and quarter more to go. Running through town is refreshing because you can see the character up close that makes up your town. I made my way across the Cypress Bridge and through my neighborhood to my house. I had just completed 6.25 miles in 55 minutes and I felt great. Now what do you do after this? Stretch, drink some water/electrolyte drink, and take a shower… Well how about putting on some swim trunks and driving over to the river and sitting in the water for a little over 6 min. Well that is what I did and it felt great. A great end to a great day.
Posted by littlejim at 11:43 PM
Sunday, May 30, 2010
Saturday, May 29, 2010
My Cabinet for the bathroom in all its glory. Some of the design elements include: drawers open over the toilet, one lower shelf, two upper, an afterthought upper cabinet, wide enough to cover old door and leave enough room for paneling, deep enough to fit towels. The top cabinet space was added because without it in a 6’x7’ bathroom, it looked like a giant skyscraper.
Posted by littlejim at 9:19 AM
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Sunday, May 23, 2010
Today went great and not so great all in one sitting. I finished wiring the lights; but had to make two trips to Osh to get a metal box to junction the light wires in the attic. Next came the big disaster. Unless you have been over here, you would not know that my toilet drain was crooked. Well this was due to me making some of my cuts just slightly too long. So today I cut the whole works out from under the bathroom and took it out to the garage and chiseled the fittings apart. When I got under the house I had one more to do. I got a little over zealous and broke the fitting. And of course it is Sunday and not one supply house is open. So next Friday when I am home, I get to go to the electrical and plumbing supply houses to get the rest of my parts. Then I cleaned up the bathroom and went to take a picture for you to all see; and I did a little too much zooming and the battery died. So now I am done with this day, see you in a few.
Posted by littlejim at 6:34 PM
Saturday, May 22, 2010
How do you run wires to lights that are all over the place when you have vent pipes and many other things in the way? That is what I am up against and after a day of putting in the boxes I have decided on my routing. Then the fun begins to draw all this stuff on graph paper so that I can hang the rock and for someday that you dont want to put a nail through anything important.
Posted by littlejim at 11:09 PM
Friday, May 21, 2010
Today I had a 60mg Cortisone Injection due to the overly pollinated air we are seeing in northern California. I have been struggling with allergies for a long time but it seems to be getting worse. I bought some daily allergy medication over the counter called Zyrtec. I thought it was working due to the fact that I was not quite as bad as normal. But the last two weeks were a disaster. I even have developed a slight cough due to the severity of it. So my opinion is that I will try a different type of daily allergy medication. The trials and errors of life!
Posted by littlejim at 9:04 PM
Thursday, May 20, 2010
Spaghetti made for 40 hungry people is no task designed for your average home kitchen. But today using a average home style kitchen with some restaurant style amenities, this task was completed. The sauce with around 12lbs of meat and various veggies was devoured. The noodles were about 2lbs too much as well as the salad being about one head left over. But the garlic bread had only a couple pieces left to the scrounger. The scrounger was myself; as I was left with only a couple of spoonfuls of sauce painstakingly scraped from the serving dishes, a few noodles, a little salad, and the last few pieces of garlic bread, end pieces of course. All in all it was a total success. Everyone left overfilled with great food and great memories of eating a fine meal after a hard days work with a bunch of friends. May this be a tribute to more of the same times to come.
Posted by littlejim at 11:46 PM
Sunday, May 16, 2010
This morning I woke up and had to ride my bicycle home; darn. I came over the bluffs overlooking the river before the sun had shown its face to the water. I have said it before but the river is one of my favorite places. As I rode down to it I found a nice little place to snap a photo of my bike. I then rode over the bridge and found myself heading towards the new trail next to he freeway. As I was making my way on to the trail, I noticed a young couple suiting up to go fly fishing. I rode around for while and as I was leaving I stopped to talk to them. They were married and on vacation visiting their parents. They grew up here but moved away to San Francisco and now reside in my birthplace of San Diego. Both of their names were a form of “Jess” and they were excited to get out there together and enjoy the river together. This is something that Morgan and I have shared together before and hop to soon share it again along with our new little girl. Happy fishing.
Posted by littlejim at 3:41 PM
Saturday, May 15, 2010
I have spent my days off of work now completing the hot and cold water lines for the bathroom. As some of you know, last week the copper pipes that are in the wall gave me quite the struggle. But after a day lying on my back listening to the radio; I completed the maze that is called the bathroom plumbing. There were several things that I had to consider when building this system. I have integrated the supply lines for the tankless water heater just outside the wall, need to leave room for the sewer lines to connect to the main, and I also wanted to be able to be able to crawl under the pipes. But the main design was to give adequate size for volume but small enough that the hot water would get to the faucet the quickest. I have a recirculation pump for the hot water to have instant hot water at all the fixtures; but due to the size of the house and the frequency of hot water use, I would rather not use it. But after a day of the water being on, I am happy to say that out of the 105 joints soldered (yes I counted) I have not one leak! Another job well done!
Posted by littlejim at 10:08 PM