Saturday, October 31, 2020

To the Studio!

My car was filthy! With us getting into it after our several daily forest walks, and her with her Velcro pelt, the inside was a horror: The floor mats, handle wells and seat creases were full of pebbles, Fir needles, pitch and enough sand to make a beach. As for the outside: Well, we have dirt roads and lots of rain.

But man-oh-man does it look good now! And when I was done, I tidied and brought beautiful order to the shed. Everything is in its place. When you go inside, the big thing you see is the wall of wood. It’s ceiling high along the back wall and one side If you look ‘round, you’ll see the other big things: The ladders, the garden tools, the big honking red generator, the freezer, summer outdoor furniture, lawn mower, power tools, deck heater, recycling bins, etc. etc. It’s a busy building.

And my studio is just as full. I have fifteen mannequins, tubs and tubes full of supplies, a sofa bed, dresser with a television on it, chairs and a huge four-by-eight-foot worktable and shelves full of jars of stuff I use for crafting. And a wood stove. 

And then there’s my three-bedroom, two-bathroom house all furnished for comfort and delight. And I came from a seven-hundred square foot condo. Can you imagine how much I’ve acquired? I’ve bought a lot of stuff and downsizing again is ahead (sooner or later). But I’m really set-up well here now and using all my things and space. 

Today—yay—I spend all day in the studio. I’m really looking forward to it. And, of course, there’ll be dog walks.

So handsome and classy! R.I. P. Mr. Bond.

Friday, October 30, 2020

Three Days of Glory

I woke up calmer yesterday. With all the painting done, I slept longer and deeper through the night. I stayed busy all day, walking Sheba and doing more minor decorating. Yesterday’s task was replacing the cheap, ugly faded knobs on all the bifold doors in the house with nice new shiny glass door pulls.

Of course, a seemingly simple task was far more complicated because the owners installed super cheap hollow doors. I had to take some of the doors apart to change the knobs to align the parts of the new pulls. But it’s done, and what a lovely difference it makes.

It was grey but lovely and mild all day yesterday, but last night there was a mighty wind and so, of course, I was worried about losing power, but the lights were on when I got up this morning at nine. And when I went out for wood, bright moonlight guided my steps. The sky is crystal clear. We're in for three spectacular days!

Today’s task is a thorough cleaning of the car. Soon, I’m going to get some minor body work done on it that has to be done before I sell it. I contacted two Nanaimo Ford dealers and left my name with a salesperson, asking to be notified if they obtain a used Transit Connect.

When we respected those of differing opinions. 

Wednesday, October 28, 2020


Above is a Ford Transit Connect. It’s a teeny weeny van, and I’m going to get me one. It’s going to become a camping van for Sheba and me so that we can go comfortably on adventures next Summer and sleep in the van. And, I can visit friends in Vancouver with Sheba for a weekend, and we can sleep in the car. I’m excited!

What a way to finish! 

I like in a one-story log home, but the roof is pitched steeply and so over the guest rooms, there’s actually a room I’ve only once been in. At the opposite end of the house is my office, and above it, the western wall of my home extends to the roof. There is no room at this end. So, it’s blisteringly high.

And the cobwebs up there. Oh my God! Before I could paint, I had to do a thorough cleaning and taping before I could paint. And my office had to be completely dismantled. But it’s done and it looks great. And when I put my office back together, I got some power cords so that when I use my generator, it’s going to be a lot easier to power up my router and computer.

Reassembly involved climbing through the “loft” where I never go, to install a wire enabling me to relocate my phone. It’s a favourite place for the cats up there. They can go up there and be away from Sheba and I, and I threw cardboard up there for them to play in. It was a horrifying sight.

I cleaned it up for over an hour, working on my hands and bony knees. And, when that was done, it ended a Herculean task: Decorating and thorough house cleaning.

Here are some photos without great lighting.

The original colour: Jaundice. (Click on the photos to enlarge
them (but you lose the captions).

The hallway is now brown; the dining room and kitchen are green.

The two-story wall is now green.

The kitchen is now "Verdicchio."

Verdicchio again, in the living room.

Murder Hornets

I wrote about the search for a Murder Hornet nest close to Vancouver a while back, and about how they were going about it. They were catching Hornets and attaching tiny tracking devices. Well…the biologists found the nest just outside of Blaine, Washington and right beside the Canadian/U.S. border. Above is a photo of them. As if Covid-19 weren’t enough, we have Murder Hornets.

I feel like a dog who’s pissed on everything now, marking my territory. I moved into this house and I added the porch to the house, but otherwise I did nothingI left everything as it was and just loaded in my furniture; I was focused on the landscaping until this painting started. But now my mark is everywhere.

Besides painting, I cleaned and oiled all my furniture. It’s all Mahogany and now it shines. I tidied up drawers and cupboards, vacuumed every square centimeter, re-attached wall trim, decluttered surfaces, fixed things that were broken and replaced missing or damaged switches, handles and pulls.

Now I get to relax and enjoy it all. Actually, I’ll be moving on to finishing the curtains in the studio and tidying up in there.

Watching the documentary about stuttering on Kanopy had a huge impact upon me. (Old school here; still can’t use “impact” as a verb.)

When I awoke unable to speak and semi-paralyzed from the waist up, I went to the hospital. The diagnosis was C-PTSD. My problem was psychological; only my symptoms were physical. My treatment was psychiatric.

Essentially, I over-respond to stimuli in my environment. That’s why I want to live in silent solitude, away from triggers (noise, too much activity, bright lights, speed, things people say or do; an infinity of things). My treatment involved helping me to adapt to life with the symptoms by understanding their cause, effect and management techniques.

I have been referring to myself as a stutterer for well over four years. I needed a simple clean way to explain my speech. When asked about my speech, I did not want to get into the C-PTSD diagnosis, its cause and effect. Saying I was a pws was easy. In two words, I could answer the question and move on. It was a tool and it worked. 

However, I didn’t really consider myself a pws. I considered myself a person with C-PTSD who had a speech, seizure limbic motor disorders. But then I watched the doc and I had that wonderful, optimistic and uplifting “these are my people” feeling.

I thought pws stuttered all the time; I had a lot of misconceptions about stuttering. And the primary concern of support groups is children who stutter. I’ve been on my own. But no more!

I’m registered for the Annual Conference of the Canadian Stuttering Association that starts on November 6th. I’m really excited! It’s three days long and there’s one stream for children and their families and another for adults.

Sheba goes in for a haircut this morning, and I’ll do some shopping while she’s being cut, then I’ll come home to finish the painting. And what a way to end it: Painting miles in the air. And just in time for four days of sunshine and mild temperatures. Hooray!

Today’s paint requires shutting down my computer and disconnecting all the wires that lead to my router and phones, alarm and printer etc., so I’ve got little stickers on wires and plugs so that I know how to reassemble everything.