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the builder SUDDENLY started to cut the GIANT materials order for cedar rounds from phone pole butts (the unused ends of phone poles you see along the highway)> They are dry, untreated, and demonstrably cedar. So, yay.
Of course he waited until the HOT weather hit us. I went to pick up the first of many loads yesterday and the tailgate on my 1999 chevy pick up decided that it was done with all that "latching" business and flapped in the wind all the way home on the highway. Cripes. I had a ratchet strap and some flimsy rope. That got me home but was NOT a great idea. I found another strap and will get more until I can figure out a fix on the tailgate. The latch has been failing for a few years and now the handle is clearly not connected to the mechanism. I had been hand adjusting the mechanisms on each side for about a year, but they are also just DONE now.

I also ordered a bit more cut lumber. The builder wants me to use concrete block as the inside wall base. I want wood (my toes vs concrete is not a lifelong battle I want to fight). He kept fighting me so yesterday (he works EVERY day except 10days when he had covid before we knew covid was a thing) in front of his 2 recent hired employees I said, "if you are so against it you won't cut the lumber I can go to the mill in Fernwood (a competitor) and he'll cut it..." SUDDENLY the builder said "oh no, I will cut it!" and took the order.
New technique learned!
 

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I hauled another load of the cedar rounds. I have my tailgate rigged up with a ratchet strap for now and a new latch assembly ordered. Today I get to get a quote on new tires because the heavy loads are super highlighting my balding ancient tires. They aren't dangerously bald yet, but old enough to have dry-rot type issues and bald enough to not be super secure on the grassy dry hillside as I go up in 4wheel. By winter they would be dangerous.
 

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nearly 1200 for the tires mounted/balanced. With a good guarantee. Folks tell me I could have saved money buying on ebay etc. BUT I don't have a deliverable shipping address other than my p.o. box unless I want to donate tires to the next vehicle headed down the highway by my house/construction site. I can't be home to receive them. No personal shipments to work. I can get my tires shipped to someone else's house which means mileage/time/hassle for both of us. Then I still pay for the mount and balance. If I had time and friends who are home all day with time to deal with my lifestyle choices like living on a highway... It does not seem worth it. The total savings since I still needed the mount and balance was under 200$. If I were totally broke I would have done it. Meanwhile the tire shop could get them in and on the next day (yesterday) after I asked about them, has stood being their tires in the past (even a sidewall hole from a rock...they replaced the tire), and could do my oil at the same time. I had a 13 hour work day out in the mountains booked yesterday so I could drop off the truck before 6am and use my spare key to drive it home. I go over in a bit and pay for it. This time, the convenience and service seemed worth 200$. Tomorrow morning I head back to moscow idaho for another load of logs.
I've been skipping my gym workouts this week because between the nearly 100deg heat and the loading/unloading wood and 13 hour days running around mountains, I'm whipped. Home HIIT workouts in the morning so I don't freeze up into a stiff old lady are the most I can do.

SO HOT yesterday. Not as bad as last year but hot enough. I was walking around when I finally got home at 8pm I was walking around with my arms away from my sides to try to keep cooler while I watered, got eggs, checked the hens. Gertrude, the dopiest hen, was IN THE SAME POSE! Walking around with her little wings held out awkwardly. I know people start to look like their dogs and cats, but now I look like my chickens!

Today is the farmers market. 3-6pm. I plan on melting. I nearly sold out of mustard last week so my stock is still low. I was up until 10pm jarring up what I had ready and only 22 jars to go to market. Oh well. I can't imagine that many people want to be out there shopping either.
 

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Glad you got your tires, Maggie. It's a safety issue. Our trailer tires had good tread on them yet but somehow we had overlooked the dates on them. They should have been replaced in 2017. To make it worse, we found 3 big chunks and deep scrapes on the tread surface of one of them when Husby took them off to go get the new ones. It's incredibly we didn't have a blowout on our trip to Illinois in 10/19. It's so easy to hit something with the trailer that gets missed by the truck's wider wheelbase.

Too funny about looking like your chicken.
 

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lol I dont' know how you even think of working out in the heat after long days like that. it is not worth the extra time and hassle sometimes. dh took his new car by our tire guys and he was guess what tires cost on there well looking the same as you almost. when the boys cleaned the ivy out there are four tires on rims.. we need to put for sale to get out of the yard.
 

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The tires will sell I bet!! Costs are high. My guys shaved 100$ off the final price. I must have been looking pathetic!

And yess on the safety. The new tires were not bulging as much fully loaded as the old ones. Surprised they didn't pop!!

Picked up a load of wood in the heat yesterday and started to get sick from the heat. I called the builder and said I would be in before 8 today. He is fine with that. Even he was in his office by the a/c yesterday and he never stops. His wife gets crankier the hotter it gets so she was a peak snark yesterday. I get a kick out of her
 

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Also...smashed my ring finger and middle finger while unloading logs yesterday!!! Bad. I made up new swear words. It was like the 2nd log of 30 I was taking off my truck so no stopping. I waited til 8 pm so it was cooler out. I keep instant cold packs and my well water was cold so I soaked it and chilled it for a while. I have a finger bob on the worst one to give it some back pressure. Helps keep the pain and swelling down. On my way to get the next load now.
 

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Sorry about the fingers, Maggie. Having pitched more logs off a truck than I could count, I know what backbreaking work it is and how fast and easy accidents can happen. I hope your hand heals fast.

Have you ever thought about a small solar setup that could run a small bar fridge? Or small wind turbine? It seems like that could be a big help to you, and maybe incorporated into your house some day.

Will you be starting the cordwood construction soon?
 

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Re cordwood construction: Turns out there are more prep steps than I realized...and then it got HOT which is hard on cob and I got overwhelmed (ok, that might be the key point!).
Anyway, hope springs eternal.
The fingers are healing (typing without stretchy bands for counter pressure today!). ALL the rest of wood moved up to my place Tuesday because I took the day off and called a friend to be my "minder". She has chronic leukemia so not great on physical work and some brain fog from on and off chemo treatments but I mostly needed someone to remind me to drink water and motivate me to get that one last load...2 big ones and then a small half load. I picked her up near the purchase location so I had to take her back anyway. We had like4 hours to just visit and since we were outside she didn't have to mask up the entire time. Also good to have extra hands when securing the load with ratchet straps. Those things defeat me!

The tailgate latch kit I ordered (the tailgate has been jerry-rigged with a ratchet strap for 2 weeks now which is scary with 1000lbs of wood in the bed repeatedly) arrived and sunday friends will help me swap it out. I could probably do it but it was delivered to their place (my address still not deliverable and I'm on the highway anyway so packages wouldn't stay long!) and they have a shop with lots of tools. And some manure that needs shoveled I bet! I don't mind. We trade labor all the time.

My chickens have been on half rations for a week! THe feed supplier ran low and asked those of us who could to stretch. I cooked up some black beans and rice, then lentils and rice for them for a few days of supplements but really, they are eating so much grass seed around the place, and bugs like the dang grasshoppers, that I don't think they needed the supplemental beans and rice. I do like to feed them once a day while yelling for them so they know to come when I shout.
I get more feed saturday. The supplier warned me she'd be butchering out her meat chickens that day in case I didn't want to see it...I'm thinking of asking her if I can help for a half hour in exchange for feed. We'll see. She may have a system and not want interference.

OK, back to work!
 

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Busy weekend...well, SUPER busy saturday and naps on Sunday (it was hot...and I was tired). Had a friend put the new latch on my tailgate. While he did that I helped his wife, also a friend, grind a weeks' worth of chicken feed. I'm allergic to wheat dust and pollen so I was super sneezy but what the heck. Got it doen and my truck tailgate actually LATCHES now so I can use my unloader tachet again.

Checked on a log splitter rental. It is 66/day or 211/week...sooo...going for a week and checking on who to share it with to make the most of the rental and pay back some favors.
I also picked up more chicken feed from my supplier...she wishes I would get venmo or paypal. I am sticking with cash.
ALSO got 20 4lb fleeces for chicken coop insulation for 100$. Much cheaper than elsewhere. Mostly because they are dirty but it really doesn't matter to the chickens. SO...I can start that project when the temp gets below 95 again. I can't move at that temperature.

SUPER busy at work this week but hoping for a chance for a day off next week.

Friday night I canned up 4 or 5 half pints of dilly beans. They fit in my tiny pressure canner. I had ALL the ingredients sitting around and no way to get them eaten up before the beans got mushy. I was short on beans for one jar so filled it with chopped up beet and chard stems which I usually fry up in my eggs or whatever scramble.
Brought those and my canned pints of beans and hominy (I got those in dry form in New Mexico in June and realized that canning 4 jars takes the same amount of effort and fuel as making 1 batch just to eat. AND means heating up the wee shed just ONCE and then I can eat them cold or heat them up in the solar cooker).
This is all saving me on groceries which is good this year.

I made a trip to an actual grocery store. First trip in 6 weeks and indeed, prices are still up. I stuck to my list and invested in some honey at the farmers markets. It costs more than sugar but I'm motivated to eat less of it!
I am not buying any sugary treats out during august as an experiment. I was in the habit of grabbing a candy bar every time I hit a store or a rest stop in July...geez! At 1.50$ per candy bar that was like 20$ in a month on absolute crap! I got a big jar of honey for that. I have cocoa and coconut oil so I can make a much more delicious chocolate treat from those I'm sure. Similar to "honey mama" brand candies which I can't afford.

There were great sales at a local hardware store. 5$ for a 5 gallon bucket (which went as a donation to some hospital) and everything you put in the bucket that was full price, you got 20% off. I have been needing buckets so I went twice when I was in that town anyway. First trip I got a 175$ dewalt 20v battery (one of mine died) for 140$ and some oil and stuff for the car. The 2nd trip I got a 3ball (heh heh) trailer hitch for my truck. 64$ but minus 12.80$. I'll need a hitch to tow the log splitter around and I'm looking at buying or renting a cement mixer in the future which will also need towed.
 

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Glad you got some buckets cheap and good deals to go with them.

I've been enjoying a spoon of nut butter as an evening snack. As treats go it's not very fancy, but it has enough sugar for me to taste, and some protein so it feels like I ate something and not just empty calories. I sometimes put salt on it if I'm craving that, but you could add a drizzle of honey for a sweeter taste.

Have fun with the log splitter. That sounds like a big job.
 

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CH: I have a nutbutter problem...i eat teh whole jar. So only buying in tiny quantities from the co-op bulk grinder these days. I even eat nuts too fast! Cripes.
I'm pretty excited about the buckets...better for laundry. The others got commandeered over winter for other jobs and got cracked and grubby. Dang it.
 

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wow good deals maggie! don't blame boss's wife I am cranky in heat too. It is hard finding something to satisfy the sweet tooth. ice cream here lol I did buy a bunch of flavoured honeys I should do something with ..family doesn't like flavoured honey.
 
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