HOUSE FROM HELL update ~ day 457 ~ going to take a MULLIGAN

Just a quick update on the House from Hell. Hubby has been working diligently to get the backyard and garage under control.

We still haven’t found anyone that can grind the stump of the old Magnolia tree out because of its proximity to the fence, garage and gate so hubby has been going at it with an axe trying to at least break away the roots from the stump.  The entire thing sticks up horribly into the pathway.  We have a few ideas for building a planter around it, but the roots have to go first to be able to do it efficiently.  I do worry that he will get as sick as I’ve become from messing around in that dirt, but he’s taking precaution and doesn’t ave the same compromised immunity that I have and has promised that he’ll wait a day or two before really getting in there.  Now that he’s “released” the area.


Many people don’t realize that many times there are viruses harbored in the soil.  This area in particular was a “cat box” for lack of a better description and though we have been working hard for over a year to treat the area, down deep may still be questionable.  I remember after the 1994 Northridge earthquake when people were getting mysteriously ill and it was later named “Valley Fever” from the dust cloud caused by the force of the earthqauke.  As I remember at least one person died from it.  It was a “THRUST” quake that came from down deep bringing with it everything that had been buried deep for years!  Under my house that was termites and ants from the old orange orchard stumps that had been turned under to build the new tract of houses 40 years before.

On another note, I did find some beautiful artichokes, but didn’t have a steamer big enough to cook them the “normal” way so tried using a new method and it worked really well.  I sliced them in half and laid them in my flat steamer.  I then sprinkled salt, pepper, garlic powder and powdered Parmesan cheese on them and started steaming. Not only were they delicious, but they were also easier to serve individually and took half as long to cook!

I have a new pet peeve.  UPS and FEDEX in our area just throw the boxes on the porch and DO NOT ring the doorbell anymore to let you know they have been there. I was waiting on a box from AMAZON yesterday and kept checking the front door as it was getting late and had yet to be delivered.  Amazon is good about packing and sealing, but when this box arrived after 7 pm last night, it was all beat up, had been opened and VERY poorly re-taped!

Since I’m still under the weather and having trouble getting my energy back I have been taking on only small projects, but have been making headway.  I have the car full again of donations. We’ve decided that since the past 14 months have been so trying and have averaged out to us BOTH working over 50 hours a week for 63 straight weeks in addition to normal life that we are going to take a “MULLIGAN” on many things.  One of which is the totes of items sitting around waiting to be ebayed. It is just not worth the time and effort to take good pictures, list, sell, pack and wait to get rid of many things.  So, we have set a price minimum.  If an item won’t bring that minimum price then it is being donated immediately and eliminated from our sight. I have also given much thought to my “hobbies” (never met a craft I wouldn’t try at least once!) and am paring down my art supplies tremendously. Some lucky person is going to be VERY happy when they are able to find my tools and supplies at the local women’s shelter re-sale store.