Spring time in SW Idaho

Overall it was a mild winter and we are having an early spring. The swings in temps of 20 degrees or more for the daytime highs and rain/spring storms have made me a little achy and sore during the weather changes.  Saturday was a tough day so I worked on my little laptop cleaning it up and reinstalling Comodo anti-virus and firewall and getting the old thing running the to the best of it’s capabilities. I want to get a new laptop with Windows 7 and multi-core processor via newegg.com in the $200-$300 dollar range as an upgrade around May or June for a laptop that will be a bit better for web browsing and some other tasks I want it to preform.  For now the old laptop is doing okay for what I need from a computer.  I’m looking towards the future of building a small chat/email server and nodes for mesh network this summer. I have done a little linux/unix coding but I need to learn more before I make a neighborhood server and routing network.

On to the yard work, I finally got the grape vines cut back from my gutters. Yes, I have let the grapes run rampant and they need to be cut back rather severely because of my neglect.  I only cleared one corner of the front yard this weekend as all of the big trash bins were full of large items like the toilet. Good news is my herbs did pretty good over winter and the sage and oregeno survived and are growing. This a big “deal” to a tyro gardener that usually kills plants or has them die via a lack of knowledge. Mulch of leaves and straw  deep (3-6 inches) seemed to work for me. Mom and I raked the back yard for doggie poo and plenty of other yard trash. The yard is cleaned up and ready for my next project.

The small bathroom is fully functional and I have not found any drips or wet spots on the floor after the toilet fix. I have to take these maint.  plumbing jobs one room at a time. The washer drain looks fairly straight forward replacing pipes to code rather than adding angles that create clogs.  The bathroom sink faucet replacement has me a bit “spooked” because of the bad valves and I need to shut off all water in the house until it is fixed.  I have plenty stored water on hand but I also know how much work transporting water without a tap can be daily. I think I’ll get the washer drain pipe done first then prep ahead of time on losing water for 24 hours with the igloo jugs and camp shower before the sink repair. Replace the hot water line first because I can cut the hot water off at the tank and once that valve is good to go, I can cut all water off to replace the cold water line. I suppose some people may think I’m being a bit silly about access to tap water.  But moving water by hand takes a lot of physical energy. If you are disabled, you may not have that energy too expend. Please do not think you will find some sort of motivation or energy based on need, that makes you move 15-20 gallons of water quickly or easily. Moving water by hand  is doable, it sure isn’t easy. Please practice you water plan! If you are like me you have underestimated your plan via real world scenarios.  I had plenty of water for me, though I underestimated cleaning, my use and flushing toilets and other little jobs.

Most thing in life are simple, that does not make them easy. There is nothing wrong with calling in a plumber on complex jobs if you can afford paying the plumber. A good plumber could do in less than two hours what took me about two weeks on replacing the toilet. The only difference is time and I learned how to fix everything on a toilet. If things go wrong can you afford to call a plumber, plus there is no reason not to learn how to do simple plumbing jobs yourself and save money and hire the plumber for the complex jobs.



2 Responses to Spring time in SW Idaho

  1. S.Lynn says:

    Since moving in we’ve had to replace the guts of one toilet. The other runs due to particulates in the well water causing the flapper not to seal property. Glad you can do things yourself as it costs quite a bit to hire people. But sometimes plumbers, carpenters, etc. are worth it when it would cost just as much to do and redo it yourself and use more of your time than you intended.

    • Jamie says:

      S.Lynn: I have to say you are correct about the balance of time and money. I learned a lot fixing my toilet and the cash cost was low overall but I was frustrated many times and it took me several weeks to correct all the problems with just one toilet.

      I will say I learned a lot, especially the value of a good plumber that could do the job in 2 days if he had parts on hand for the job. I had plenty of time if not money for the job when I started the repair and now I know how to replace a almost everything toilet repair related except some of the major plumbing and venting.

      For the cost of $100.00 in parts and my time that is a good investment in learning.

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