Category: lakehouse

Mon. Nov. 28, 2022 – home and working the list

Cool and damp, but probably no precip.   Lovely day yesterday at the BOL.  Sun came out and dried up all the rain, and the itsy  bit-sy ……….

Anyway, enough of the silliness.   No one called me on my “insert clever remark” joke?  I’ll take it as  you guys hoping to spare my feelings for a dumb mistake, and not a failed joke.  (I don’t actually have a template for posts, despite the familiar (some might say ‘well worn’) shape.)*

There, you see?   It was a kindness, not a bad joke.   The power of an author knows no bounds.

Anyway, enough of this silliness.   I did get stuff done to advance the ‘livability’ of the BOL.   Still plenty to do, but the master bath has made progress, and  the master bedroom.  Having a Christmas tree up makes it more homey than you’d think.

Now to really get to stacking up there.   I’ve got piles (stacks!) of stuff to take up.   The difficulty will be in deciding where the balance should be between the amount of stuff here and the amount of stuff there.   That will be a temporary issue if everything holds together long enough for me to get to parity….

So stack some stuff at your place.  Then stack some more at wherever you’ll end up if things go sideways.  You won’t regret it.



*and here I would have dropped the close parenthesis and made a ‘failed to compile’ joke for the programmers in the audience.

Sun. Nov. 27, 2022 – Put something clever here…

Cold but clear today, if last night’s weather holds.  It was 47F when I went to bed.   Of course it’s damp too, so it really feels cold.

Spent most of Saturday prepping and texturing the ceiling in the master bedroom and bath.   It looks ok.  Better than popcorn anyway, and certainly cleaner.  Considering that it’s been about 20 years since I ran the texture gun, and I didn’t do a whole lot o that even back then, I’m happy with the result.   My wife will be painting it today, primer (Kilz) then ceiling paint.

I’ll be buttoning up the property and knocking some more small jobs off the list.  We’ll probably stay here most of the day, then head home.

I’ve got a load of trash, some metal for recycling, and 2 LP gas bottles for refilling in the truck.  I’ll have to bring up some more bottles if I am going to be running the patio heaters, they go through gas like crazy.

I will have to ask the propane guy up here if there is a way to get set up for refilling BBQ bottles off the big tank.  My guess is “no, no, and HELL NO.”  Can’t hurt to ask though.

Lake is up quite a bit.   Supposedly we got more than two inches of rain the just the last two days.  With the area that feeds the lake, that made a large change in water level.   Guess I missed my chance to replace some of the dock posts without standing in water… oh well.  Gotta prioritize.

I’ll be moving some stacks up here, and some shelves to put them on the next trip up.   Time to stock the BOL a bit better.   Time to get a safe up here too.

Do some adding to your own stacks.   Don’t wait for the New Year’s Resolution.


Sat. Nov. 26, 2022 – gettin’ stuff done

Cool and damp, but maybe not raining today.  That would be nice.  It stayed damp and misty all day yesterday.

So I only did a little bit outdoors.  I did break two more slabs of concrete from the front walk and move them to the pile of free concrete rubble.   Don’t know for sure, but I think some of the pile might have gone away.

Spent some time chatting with a neighbor 2 houses down, who I don’t see often.   And chatted for a bit with my fisherman friend.  I even got a few minutes to practice fishing between little jobs.   But mostly I was scraping ceilings.    [that should be enough sentence fragments for a while… maybe I’ll do a run-on for balance]

My wife found the telescope last night as we were putting away the movie night stuff, unfortunately it’s been cloudy so I didn’t reveal it to her on purpose, since there was nothing to see, but she was surprised.  “Now THAT’S a big telescope!”  Maybe we’ll get a break tonight and it will clear up.    It would be nice to at least look through it this weekend.

There were a few more boats on the lake yesterday and the level is up, so they could use the community launch ramp next door.  Otherwise I might not have noticed.  I expected more people to come up for the holiday weekend, but it’s anything but “busy”.   I’m happy enough with that, we weren’t looking for a busy lake or a lot of people.   So far none of the holidays have been particularly busy that I could see.   Maybe on the other side of the lake the experience was different.  In any case, I’m pleased.

Turkey and leftovers were tasty.   Today D2 declared it was the best turkey every, although she prefers the “normal” way I make ribs.   Hooray for that.  Now to learn about smoking as a preservation technique and not just for flavor.

Maybe I’ll try salting some pork too.  Hmm.  Always good to learn new skills.  Most of my chat with my fisherman friend was about making sausage.  Time to start stacking up some more skills…

And in case those skills don’t work out, stack some more food.  It’s pretty cheap now, and will likely be very dear later.




Fri. Nov. 25, 2022 – it’s Black Friday y’all, time for a retail brawl…

Cool and wet again today.   At least to start. It rained here most of yesterday, going from storm to drizzle to storm to steady rain, back to misty drizzle throughout the day.  I’m hoping that it will dry out a bit later.

My smoked turkey was a success.   It was done earlier than expected, so we ate earlier.   I thought I’d be short on wood for the smoke but I had plenty.   Shredded pecan stump works great.   It’s been a few years so I am happy it went well, and I will do more smoking soon.   The stuff will stay up here and  I should be able to do little jobs while watching the fire.  Both the turkey and the pork ribs had beautiful ruby red flesh, a good half inch deep or deeper and tasted great.

I didn’t get much else done, but I did get some (very) small things off the list.   And importantly, my wife proved we can do a big meal from scratch up here despite the work zone conditions and very small oven.

And hey, we found a  couple of things we haven’t brought up yet, like a small food processor, or an immersion blender.  Or honey.   If we’re gonna keep making cornbread, we WILL need honey.

Today I’m hoping to get back in the groove and make some real progress on the master bath.   We’ll see what happens.

And the next trip up, I’ve got to move a bunch of stuff.

Everyone  should be stacking whatever they can.


(you can probably do without the ‘free’ big screen tv…)




Thurs. Nov. 24, 2022 – Thanksgiving Day (US)

Thanksgiving Day.   I wish you all a wonderful and fulfilling day.

I’m thankful for the time we have.  Time to spend with friends and family, time to prep for what is surely coming.   I’m thankful for the good times that created the resources I’m using to get ready.

I’m thankful for family to share the burdens and the love.

I’m thankful for friends, here and in meatspace.   I’m thankful for the companionship and camaraderie I find here, as well as the help with a wide range of issues.

I’m thankful for the continued support of Barbara and Rick.

I’m thankful for the trust Bob showed me when he first asked me to contribute here.

And I’m thankful for everyone who comes here as a reader or commentor, regularly, or just occasionally.   You all make it what it is.

Enjoy the day.

Save me some pie!


Wed. Nov. 23, 2022 – now we’re gettin’ somewhere…

Chilly and damp.   MAY get some rain, but I hope not.

Yesterday’s rain continued until about 10am, then it was part sun for the rest of the day.  Around dusk, I drove through some very light drizzle north of Houston, but it didn’t get the stuff in the bed wet.

Did my pickups.   Made it here and had a relaxing movie  night with the family.

I was listening to a couple more episodes of The New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes on the drive up.  These are recordings of the radio show from 1946 starring Basil Rathbone.  It’s surprising how good they sound, how BAD organ music sounds on the recording, and how different the world was.   The sponsor, Petri wine, has to basically teach the audience about wine, when to drink what, and even what “dry” means.  The only wine they are selling is port, sherry, and muscatel.  But ‘every Petri wine is a good wine.’   It was a simpler time.  But, it was also a time when the audience had a much better vocabulary and understanding of the spoken word.

Today, I think you’d be hard pressed to find 3 people in 100 who could listen to a half hour radio show and understand it.

Speaking of today, the turkey started defrosting last night and will go into some sort of brine today.  If I have to head to town and the grocery store for anything I’ll be looking for cheap whole chickens or cheap ribs to throw in the smoker with the turkey.  If I’m going to run it for a day, I should fill it.

While the turkey is thawing, I’ll be working on the master bath, plumbing first, then popcorn ceiling and more carpentry.  It would be nice to get it back together and working (albeit without floor covering) this week.   Some more plumbing in the kitchen would be nice too.  And a myriad of small things might get done, or not, as the spirit and time move me.

Stacking up the improvements.   And sand bags.  For some reason the universe is putting sand bags in front of me this month.   So I’m buying them.  I’ve learned not to ignore something like that.  I’ve picked them up at Goodwill, and at auction.   I’ve got plenty of sand here…

If you see something you don’t usually see, especially if it’s something out of the ordinary, take a good long look, and see if there is a message there.   Could be coming from your subconscious, or elsewhere, but it’s always worth paying attention,  especially if you notice it more than once.

Maybe it’s something you need to stack.  There are lots of things I’m sure.  Or maybe it’s just someone you need to call, or maybe something you need to avoid, or embrace.   Live in the moment, you can sleep when you’re dead.

Stack stuff.



Sun. Nov. 13, 2022 – Chilly willy today

Cold this morning, warming later, but COLD now.  And it was 36F last night at 11pm by the water.   40F at the house.  At least for now we’ve gone straight from summer to winter, barely seeing fall at all.

Did my non-prepping hobby yesterday.  Great to see the familiar faces, and  a couple of new members, as well as some old members that don’t get to meetings every month.  Didn’t sell much.  That was a bit disappointing, but I’ll bring the stuff to the next sale and it might move then.

After that, I loaded the truck and headed out.   It was late afternoon by the time I got here, already chilly and getting dark.  I got my patio heaters ready, laid a fire, and ate dinner.   It was a nice night to have the fire.  Ate s’mores with D2 and W1… watched the stars move in the sky.   Moon rose about 1015.  Until then it was pretty dark and clear.   Needed the fire and the heaters though.  Damp by the water.  And chilly.  Did I mention chilly?

Wife got the bedroom flooring re-installed.  Today we’ll probably do more work in the master bath, and the kids’ rooms.  Then it will be back home for school on Monday.  Short trip but more food and more stuff moved this way.  And more work got done.

Always be improving your situation.   Always be stacking.


Sat. Nov. 12, 2022 – 111222 – non-prepping hobby day, and travel

Cold and wet, with a chance of cold and clear.    National forecast says we’ll be clear, and it could warm up, but it was 48F when I went to bed.

Spent Friday doing my pickups, then finding the stuff I wanted to bring to my meeting to try to sell.   I had lost a thing that is bigger than a breadbox…   found it though.   Looked in three places before looking at home.  It was sitting here all along, not even hidden, just in a bin I didn’t think it would be in.   I was looking for it out in the open.  You always find it in the last place you look 😉


Today I’ve got my meeting, then load the truck and head out.   I’ll get some stuff moved up there, do a chore or two, and spend some time there.   All wins.

I have plenty to do at home, but I need to keep moving at the BOL if we’re going to do Thanksgiving there.

And I’m moving stuff there and building the stacks.  If I have enough time, I’ll divide my OTC drug bin and take half to the BOL.   I’m taking most of the food I bought yesterday too.  One of the deals at HEB yesterday was “buy a ham, get a free turkey”.  I’ve got freezer space at the lake, so I did.    Even though the ham was a dollar more per pound than Costco, the 12 pound turkey for free more  than made up the difference.   A couple of years ago that deal didn’t save any money over Costco.  Now it does.

If you aren’t normally a “deal” shopper, a coupon-er, or an ad shopper, this would be a good time to start.  Get a jump on the coming hardship, and practice saving money.  Learn the rhythm of the sales, and what stores have better pricing on what items.   It’s not yet a matter of eating or not eating, so you can make mistakes and climb the learning curve.   Going on as you’ve always gone, is not going to be an option forever.

Preps will help ease the transition.  So stack some stuff.


Sun. Nov. 6, 2022 – Fall back. Now you get the hour the gubment stole from you back…

Cool and damp at the BOL.  It was sunny and very nice when I arrived before evening yesterday.  The night was bright with the almost full moon, and a fire on the dock was very cheering.

Got some stuff done, see yesterday’s comments for details if your interested.

Got stuff to do today.  The vapor barrier needs to be applied this visit so my wife can get the flooring back down next visit.  We are going to have Thanksgiving up here, so some work needs to be done before then.

And apparently I’m just the guy to do it!

It’s ok.   I brought some more food up and the new freezer, so I’m continuing to stack here.   We could bug out to here now and be OK for a while.  That is a Good Thing ™ when world powers seem to be just fine with the idea of using nukes on top of the ongoing economic dumpster fire.

If you don’t have somewhere to go to, try to find someone to go to.  A mutual ‘swap’ pact where either of you can head to the other if things get out of hand locally might be your best bet.  Make sure you can bring some resources with you, skills and knowledge if not stacked goods.  That will ease an already awkward and tense situation.  Food is always welcome.

Having it on hand, or having it to bring with you is a good reason to stack more.  If you needed a reason….



Sat. Nov. 5, 2022 – work, work, work. Lord Warfin has left the facility…

Cool and clear.  After a night of storming and rain.   Temps dropped 10F between when I got home and midnight, with the rain starting right around midnight.  The front is supposed to move through though, and leave a gorgeous Saturday behind.  We’ll see, is about all I can say so far.

Did my pickups and none of my errands yesterday.   Forgot about two of them and ran out of time.  I’ll be trying to get them in before I blow town today.  I need to pick up some liquid slab sealer/vapor barrier.  I plan to just use the same stuff we used under our hardwood here in the house.   It wasn’t cheap but it was easy to install and I’m familiar with it.  I already picked up a structural crack repair epoxy.   Might be overkill, but where I did it here we haven’t had issues.   Where I didn’t, we’ve had moisture under the floor.  Store opens at 10am and is a mile from my house, on the way toward the BOL.

That is the big goal for this weekend- get the middle bedroom floor sealed, so my wife can put the floor back next weekend.

Wife and kids are at Girl Scout camp this weekend, so I hope the weather clears.   I can work indoors if it’s raining at the lake.  I don’t want to drive up in the rain, or have the stuff in the back of the pickup truck get wet, so I REALLY hope it’s clear later.

If I can’t work on the floor, I’ll do something else.   And on the way up, I pick up the new freezer.  Getting that up there is a secondary goal all by itself.

I’ll have the dog with me this weekend, so that should be interesting.   We’ll see how he behaves without his girl along, and if I can keep him off the floor goo.

Exciting times ahead.

Stack some stuff, you know you wanna.




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