Sunday, September 24, 2023

Week 38: Smoky air, progress and plans

An unusual week

Wow, we had two really bad air quality days followed by several hours of “unhealthy” air each day the rest of the week. It was smoke from wildfires in the far north of California and in southern Oregon. 

Then we found out our landscaper is injured and can't do the planting work. The person doing the hardscape work will step in thankfully and Hubby is pitching in as much as he can so this can be done. 

We agreed to a 10 hour day of babysitting both grand-girls in early October so son an DIL can go on a boat trip they won at a silent auction. Since the grand-baby burst into sobs when left with us briefly this week, we have concluded she has reached the stranger fear stage and we realized she had been asleep the last few times we were at their house. Ages in baby time since she was familiar with us being around lol. The plan is for me to spend big chunks of time at their house before babysitting so she is used to us again and we know her current schedule/likes/needs and how to use the high chair, etc. Babies change so fast at this age. As I told my 40 year old son, we haven’t taken care of a 7 month old baby since he was one!

With lots of advice from the local Benjamin Moore store staff followed by internet reading, we have a tentative plan to fix the slippery paint on the large old concrete patio. Right now it seems the sequence is to pressure wash, lightly sand with an orbital sander, vacuum and wash again, perhaps prime depending on what the surface is like, and then paint with an anti-slip acrylic coating. The final coat can be made any of their colors so that is a plus. Our son lent us a handheld power orbital sander to test on a small area. Then we will decide how much of this to do ourselves as we could rent a larger orbital sander that you stand up to use and our landscaper will pressure wash. The store staff also carefully picked and recommended 3 small company painters for us to contact for bids if we want to hire a crew.

Got stuff done

  • Son and the grand-girls came over for dinner Wednesday while DIL worked late. 
  • Cleared off my desk and that checked off at least 7 things on my 20+ items still on our move to do list and also got pile of paperwork filed.
  • Cleaned the high chair so it is ready to use
  • Exercised a bit more and ate fairly healthily 
  • Bought 2 long sleeve tees after checking my wardrobe for fall. Decided to check out the local Marshalls before ordering anything else.
  • We watched a video specific to our thermostat and reprogrammed it so fingers crossed it works correctly for us! No more coming on in the middle of the night when not needed hopefully.
  • We agreed on the largest plants for back and front.
  • Ate 6 of 7 planned dinners at home and got takeout from the local taco truck when son and girls were here.


Complete last week’s nagging tasks: 

  • finish cleaning the kitchen appliances that came with the house (refrigerator coils vacuumed, dishwasher cleaned)
  • complete more items left on move to do list

Exercise more before flu shot on Thursday

Plan all meals at home

Try sanding painted concrete and decide how to proceed with painting after earthquake retrofit work is done

Get paint chips for colors used on house so can pick patio color easily

Mending/alterations done

Clear off “donate or undecided” items on table in garage

Rearrange non clothing storage so I have more room for clothing in my closet and bedside table

And that is once again ambitious!


  1. We used to mix sand in paint to make it less slippery. I suppose they don't do that anymore. Love how carefully you research each step of your projects.

    1. Adding sand is still an option but with a patio the size of ours it is hard to make it look uniform. The new product seems like it work better once the old surface is properly prepared.

  2. We did an overnight with our 2-year-old g'daughter. It was a little worrisome at times, but we succeeded. I think you'll enjoy this opportunity (as we did) to spend time with the baby and really get to know her. You are lucky . . . and so are your son and DIL!

    1. It is lovely to spend time with them. She was fine with us until this last time when it had been a while. I spent the morning with her and my son at their house and got smiles so hopefully it will go well.

  3. Our wooden deck gets fairly slippery and we have been talking about adding sand the next time we paint.

    Babies make strange at the strangest times. Going and spending more time with baby is a great idea.

    God bless.

    1. Wood can get quite slippery when wet. I did enjoy the baby time. More this weekend.

  4. Sympathy to the landscaper for being injured and having to miss work; so glad the hardscape guy can help out to move things along for you!

    Love hearing about your experiences with grandgirls, since mine are so 'old' and independent now. Miss those little girl days!

  5. I have had the same goals since spring. Waaaa. Have to make them happen before we start a new year with a whole list of new things to deal with. You have accomplished a lot. Will be interested to see how the painted concrete project turns out. And to see the backyard once everything is planted. One of my goals was trying to get our bougainvillea to bloom. NO LUCK. We did buy and plant a tree in the backyard in hopes that next summer our lawn under the tree will stay green throughout the hottest days of the season.

    1. My goals seem to slip in time too lol! Fingers crossed the new tree does well.


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