Sunday, February 26, 2017

Septic Troubles

 Ever since the beginning of December I have been having trouble with water overflowing into my laundry room area each time the washing machine emptied after its cycle. I would squeegy it out each time, but it was quite a bother. We also smelled a really bad smell in the kitchen, especially when we were washing dishes. No matter how much I scrubbed and cleaned it would not go away. On Clancy's birthday we invited Mark and Carol over for breakfast and a small birthday party for Clancy. I asked Mark to bring his snake to help unplug the line for my washing machine. Little did we know that that was just the tip of the iceberg and we had a major septic clog going on. When the snake didn't even slightly touch the problem, it was time to start digging and I must say they struck gold... grey gold!! We got to know much more about the septic in our house. The kitchen, laundry, and an outside bathroom that is seldom used, empty to the city septic through its own piping and area. The other two bathrooms empty through a completely separate area. The area that was clogged was thankfully the kitchen side, so it was just a lot of grey water, but boy howdy is grey water stinky too~!

Digging for the good stuff

Mark, Rudi, and Myles all took turns digging down about three feet.

Intently studying the problem

And it looks like we struck gold!!

Here it all comes.
 The cement pipe had gotten a hole in it and the pipe had become filled with dirt and roots from the mango tree. We think that this happened MANY years before we arrived here and that the septic was backing up that whole time. I doubt anyone else used this side of the house as much as we have.

Myles and another fella replaced the cement pipe with a nice new plastic one.
Ready to bury the new pipe.

Pieces of the old cement pipe. You can see just how stuffed it
was with dirt and roots.

All clean and new

Meanwhile, back in the house we couldn't use the kitchen sink or that side of the house for 24 hours, so that the glue could dry on the new pipe, but life does go on. I washed dishes in the bathroom. Don't worry I sanitized the bathroom before washing!! Always a multi tasker, I had Peter on the pot while I washed!!! You will have to watch for him on his little potty in the next few blogs. He is showing up all over the place sitting on that thing!!!

Washing dishes, a la bathroom style!!

A Night at the Movies

Those that know us know that we are pretty old fashioned in the electronics department. We also haven't had a television screen in our home for the past eleven years. Our kids watch, max, about one movie a week. Some of our family favorites are the Andy Griffith Shows, Five Mile Creek, Sound of Music, and Friendly Persuasion. Our family criteria for choosing the movie is Philippians 4:8 "Finally brethren, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report, if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things." Not many movies fall under that criteria anymore!!!

Rudi and I seldom watch the movie with the kids. We would rather spend the time together. Our kids surprised us one evening with a dinner "out" in our room and they baby sat themselves with a movie!!!
The Theatre
Not quite the "big screen", but it works!

The Dinner Out
Yumm Bowls by candlelight!!

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Mango Madness

Our treasured mango tree
I have always loved mangos. You know those hard somewhat tasteless red fruits that you buy for a dollar each(on sale!) in the grocery store back home. I never dreamed I would one day live where they grew on the trees around town and even in my own backyard. We have the biggest mango tree in our yard. Not only do we love it for its shade, it gave off a bumper crop this year. This variety isn't my favorite, as it is more to just suck on, as it isn't very meaty. It also leaves lots of "strings" in your teeth.  Rudi estimated that our tree had around 4000 mangos on it. Some of the branches were almost touching the ground with how heavy it was with fruit. We threw away and gave away MANY mangos from our tree. Sometimes Rudi or some of the kids would collect them and take them down and sell them to the local fruit vendors for about three dollars for 100 mangos! Others we sold or gave to neighbors who gathered them themselves. It was a gift that just kept giving!!! The ones that Rudi sold, he saved up the money and bought us all ice cream with it! We started getting ripe mangos around the end of November and it continued through January. Around town many mango trees are just getting ripe, so we will have fresh mangos through at least February.
Rudi and helpers collecting mangos to sell.

25 mangos per black bag...

"Are you pushing or pulling back there?"

Aren't they sweet? 
On the other side of our yard our neighbors have another type of mango tree. These are actually my favorite. I guess you could say that mangos also are better on the other side of the fence, just like everything else!!! They are a lot smaller, actually the smallest I have ever seen, but have a better "meat" inside and don't have hardly any fibrous stuff to get stuck in your teeth! Ruth and I put a lot of these away in the freezer and we have made yummy smoothies from them.
Paula holding the little mangos with the
neighbors mango tree behind her!!
 And you may think I am a little OCD about mangos, but I measured the various types we had from our yard and neighborhood. After all I did title this blog "Mango Madness", so you were fore warned!! R. (just like people!)
A big variety that Rudi bought in the market, Our very own mango,
and Our neighbor's baby mango!

And from another angle!!
And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:12