Paradise ponders, chaos edition... Man, what a day! Four workers from Leading Edge (the company we use for our heating and air conditioning, and a few other things) showed up to start work on an accumulated list of projects here. First up was replacing our old water heater. It was on its last legs, and the capacity was less than we needed. It's been yanked, and in doing so they discovered the thing was nearly half full of sediment. Sheesh! Now we have a pair of brand new 50 gallon water heaters, plumbed in parallel. That gives us 100 gallons of nice hot water anytime we want it.
The workers also started on correcting a problem the home's previous owner created: not enough air returns to the furnace. This was causing us all sorts of problems. Basically the size of our furnace dictates that there be at least five returns in the house (returns are the grilles that return cold air to the furnace to be reheated; they're generally located near the floor). Our house only had two, and even those were undersized. Why did we only have two? Turns out the previous owner decided to cover up four returns! Argh! Today the workers installed two new returns; tomorrow they're going to install a third and enlarge the two existing ones. They're also going to install a large surface area filter on the furnace to reduce the resistance to air motion in the system. We're hoping that finally ends our series of heating problems.
After they've finished with the furnace, they're going to plumb our diesel and gasoline tanks to the “filling station” we started last year. We've talked with our mason, and he's started the project of putting rock on that. With any luck at all, in a couple of months we'll have our own little filling station here.
Meanwhile, the sprinkler workers were back at it today. They're still making trenches for the 6" water line and risers they're moving out of our back yard. Once that's done, it's grade correction, then sprinkler installation, followed by sod installation. They're going to be here a while.
Both of these groups of workers needed quite a bit of input from me today. I was constantly being pulled in one direction or another by these guys. All necessary stuff – I'm not complaining – but not at all conducive to getting anything done on my list of things to do!
But wait, there's more!
Debbie (who's doing fantastically well) really wanted some chicken noodle soup. To satisfy her requirements for a low sodium diet, that means we have to make it – and right at the moment, we means me! :) So I ran to the grocery store this morning, then came home and cleaned and chopped celery, onions, carrots, and roast chicken; sauteed the veggies, spiced up some unsalted chicken broth, dumped in the veggies and chicken, tossed in some fresh fettuccine to make some homemade chicken noodle soup. It tasted good to me, and got Debbie's enthusiastic approval. Meanwhile, the water in the house is turned off completely (because they were installing the water heaters), so I couldn't clean anything in the kitchen – not even my hands. I used paper towels and Pine-Sol to wash up with. :) Later in the day, when the water was restored, I managed to clean up the disaster area formerly knows as our kitchen.
But wait, there's still more!
Partway through my chicken soup preparations, I saw Miki (our oldest dog) vomiting. That made it three days in a row that he'd done so. Time to be worried. Debbie made a vet appointment, and right after I finished making the soup I headed to the vet with poor little Miki. We were worried about bloat, something that had happened to Mo'i (another of our field spaniels) nearly ten years ago. The vet quickly eliminated both bloat and a different kind of blockage. Good. But he suspects pancreatitis. He took blood and urine for testing, and we'll know for sure by Friday if that's what it is. The vet thinks it's equally likely that this is just some temporary GI disturbance, and will go away all on its own in a few days. If it is pancreatitis, then Miki will be going on a special low-fat diet for a while, and getting regular doses of anti-nausea and metronidazole (an antibiotic used to treat stomach infections, amongst other things). Other than the vomiting he seems to be just fine, except that he's gained almost ten pounds over the past year (from 41 to 50). There may be a diet in his future. :)
For some reason I'm fairly tired this evening. :)