Box for Copic pens. More office organizers. Hotter.

smaller box
This is one of the smaller boxes in which Elaine stores Copic pens

Elaine has been keeping her Copic pens in some plastic boxes that will hold about 144 pens. She has two and they are mostly full so she needs more storage. She recently found and ordered a larger box, about 11×15 inches in size, that will hold ALL her Copic pens plus more that she hasn’t bought yet. This new box will hold 406 pens. She thinks it will be easier to carry the single box and have all her colors available when she goes to a class. And she has A LOT of Copic pens – more than 250 of them, in fact! Continue reading Box for Copic pens. More office organizers. Hotter.

New permanent bridge. John is off. Sorting parts.

Finally, my permanent bridge is in place. The dentist told me to not bite with those teeth for another 24 hours, while the cement is curing. But after that I should be able to eat as normal. The new bridge has none of the roughness and edges the temporary one had. I must have been good, because the last temporary did not break and did not come loose. The tech had to work hard to remove it. Continue reading New permanent bridge. John is off. Sorting parts.

Plants, chains, and caps.

lantanas
Three lantana plants for our front yard garden

So as to keep me from continuing in an untruth, Elaine today bought another purple lantana plant! Yesterday I had reported that she had bought two, but it was only one. I was fooled because she had set it next to the one we already had that had been blooming in whites, yellows, and oranges, but has now started blooming in purple! Trying to fit in, I suppose. You can see them in the photo: the one in back and the one to the right are the new ones, while the one to the left and in a square pot is the old one. Continue reading Plants, chains, and caps.

Mother’s Day lunch. Shopping at The Home Depot. Front yard work.

at Smashburger
Elaine at Smashburger. She’s talking on the phone with Destry.

It was her choice, so we had Mother’s Day lunch at Smashburger. Smashburger is Elaine’s favorite burger place, and she especially likes the Avocado Club Burger (Fresh avocado, applewood smoked bacon, lettuce, tomato, ranch dressing & mayo on a multi-grain bun) with Veggie Frites (Fresh green beans & carrot strips, flash fried). I had a Buffalo and Blue Cheese Burger (Frank’s® RedHot® Buffalo Sauce, blue cheese crumbles, lettuce, tomato & mayo on an egg bun) with Fried Pickles (Garlic pickles battered & fried). The was our first time trying the Fried Pickles; they were OK but not an outstanding choice for me.

new plants
A hanging basket of portulaca and some new plants in the planter beyond.

Earlier this morning Elaine, Kerby, Gizmo, and I had gone shopping at The Home Depot for some front yard stuff. We needed some additional plants for one of the planter boxes and Elaine also wanted some for the ground level. She picked out a couple of purple lantana pots for ground level; these shrubs grow well in Arizona and will expand and spread. You can see them in the photo below.

white chain
My first try on attaching the white plastic chain to the black posts. There will be two runs of chain between each pair of posts.

We also got the base hardware for the eighth post, and bought the white chain and hardware to attach it to the posts. We bought screw eyes for one end of each chain segment and screw hooks for the other end. The chains will be permanently attached to the eyes but can be removed at the hook end for whatever purpose. When I first experimented with the attachments I was not happy with the screw hooks because of their length; they stood out to far from the post face. But I realized later that all I have to do is screw them in further! Duh!

 

Record 108 temp. Planters progress.

forecast
What a change in spring weather in Phoenix!
108 temp
A record 108 temp today in Phoenix

Yes, it is spring in Phoenix. And as in other places, the weather can be variable. Witness today’s record high of 108° with the forecast of 74° on Tuesday! That’s a 32° difference. With relative humidity at 9%, that’s a dry heat of course. I worked outside a lot during midday and did not feel uncomfortable, even with those temps.

My work turned into a lot of frustration, however. I was working on our new planters. I needed three more 5″ corner braces to finish the job and had bought them a day or so ago at Barry’s Ace Hardware on W Glendale, not wanting to drive the extra distance to The Home Depot on W Thunderbird. I also bought some 5/16″ stove bolts to attach the planter facing boards to the brackets. Well today I discovered that the hole pattern on Ace’s braces did not match the pattern on Home Depot’s braces, so they did not fit my system. Then I drove to The Home Depot only to find out they were out of that item! On to The Home Depot at Cave Creek Road and Thunderbird, where I was able to find plenty.

Back at the house I then discovered that the 5/16″ bolts that fit Ace’s braces were too large for Home Depot’s. Back to Ace and I exchanged the three braces I bought plus all the 5/16″ bolts, nuts, and washers for 1/4″ bolts, nuts, and washers. They only had 20 bolts, so I will have to go to a different store to buy the rest I need – another 20.

face panels
I have the first face panels in place on our planters

I installed the new brackets to finish that part of the job, and then turned to the facing boards. I was able to use the bolts I did have to mount the board on the south side as well as one of the boards on the front side. You can see the partial result in the photo. I think they will look good when done; I still have to paint the bolt heads, touch up the boards, and do some minor tweaks.

Elaine braved the heat to wash down the porch floor. It had gotten quite dirty and was well in need of cleaning. It sure looks good now!

On with the project. African Violets.

We received approval this morning from the office for our front yard project, so after Elaine was back from crafts and we had lunch we headed to The Home Depot to purchase the items for the posts. I needed post bases and post material. We had decided on 4×4 wood, and I looked for redwood but there was only 4×3 so I bought two. I also bought the metal post bases to set in concrete. I was a little concerned that the bases are for 4×4, but I figured they would still work. Then on the way home I thought also about the post caps we want to use and they will look strange with a 4×4 cap on a 4×3 post. So I will return the redwood and get 4×4 Douglas Fir instead.

Elaine reported that there were only 2-3 people at the craft session this morning. While most of the RVers have left for the summer, there are still several who attend crafts who are here year-round. Some have left on trips, and the others may have been busy with something else. But things sure do quiet down noticeably when the winter visitors leave!

violets
African violet plant in bloom

Elaine has bought several African Violet plants and has them on the the kitchen bar. They have been there for a few weeks now, and all the plants look healthy. But only one has started to bloom and it is going crazy with blossoms! It is strange. They have all been treated the same EXCEPT that the blooming plant was accidentally dropped and its pot broken a few weeks ago. Elaine repaired the pot right away and repotted the plant. She has looked for some African Violet food in a couple of stores but has not found any yet. She’s hoping she can persuade the others to bloom as well.

Hard day shopping.

“My ass is dragging!” said Elaine as she headed out the door to play cards tonight. “That’s because you shopped so hard today,” I teased her. We had started with a trip to Trader Joe’s this morning; Pete Petersen came along as well. Then she wanted to stop at the Tuesday Morning store at 12th Street and Northern and then the 99¢ Store in the same complex. So we did them all. Or, I should say, she and Pete did them all. I waited in the car for the Tuesday Morning and 99¢ Store forays.

Back home about 11:30 it wasn’t long before lunch, and then about 1:15 we headed to The Home Depot. As I thought more about the layout of the window box liners I want to use in our planter boxes I realized that on the runs on each side of the house there was a distance of around 40″ or so and the spacing of the bracket supports left a foot or so between the front one and the house corner. The 32″ liners would leave a lot of empty space. I checked and The Home Depot now had 36″ Pennington liners in stock and I wanted to get a couple. They don’t make 40″ liners.

Thinking further about our front yard project we decided we want to also add about five posts along the sidewalk and the first part of the driveway edge and then run some rope or plastic chain in a couple of runs between posts. So while at The Home Depot we also looked at posts and found some 3×3-inch posts the size we want, but not 4×4. I will have to order those.

I stopped at the office here in the Park to ask about adding the posts and was given a form to fill out requesting approval for the changes. This is a new feature here at Royal Palm. I got that filled out and returned to the office.

We got a good swim session in this afternoon; great sunny and warm weather, though we did have some wind come up while we were in the pool.

And then it was time for Elaine to prepare supper. After we ate she looked like she was going to doze off in her recliner, but she got up around 5:40 since it was time to head for cards. That’s when she made the comment I started this off with!

Back to Home Depot. Breakfast treats. If all else fails.

in shopping cart
Kerby and Gizmo in shopping cart at The Home Depot

We were back at The Home Depot again this afternoon; this time to return some items purchased a couple of days ago and to purchase some others. Pete Petersen took advantage of our trip to go along and buy some lumber items he needed for projects he is working on. And Kerby and Gizmo went again, too. They love to go shopping! They didn’t get as much attention today as the last time, but they still enjoyed it. I just had to buy some shelf supports and some brackets; I am going to install them on the outside of the shed and use them to hang an extension ladder to get it out of the way. Continue reading Back to Home Depot. Breakfast treats. If all else fails.