I don't know about you, but fall cleanup and home improvement are about to kill me. On top of staining a lot of trim and then finishing it with two coats of polyurethane for the next round of new windows, I've had a headache for the past two days. I'm guessing the two are somehow related.
Saturday began with a trip to the recycling center and Walmart with Sam while Budley was off on a twenty-mile hike with the Boy Scouts. And yes, you read that right. Anyway, when I got home, I made Indian Paneer cheese and then spent the afternoon trying to get the green stuff off our ten-year-old deck with something called Deck Wash that you're supposed to be able to spray on the deck to dissolve the green goo and then rinse it off--with no scrubbing! Ha!!! They LIE!!!!
I used a lawn/garden sprayer with the result that the Deck Wash, which smells like it's mostly ammonia, dried so fast it didn't have time to work on the green stuff. It worked great in the places where I spilled it. Anyway, after I'd gone up to the barn for my big push broom to do some scrubbing, I realized the applicator of choice was my trusty watering can. Of course, by that time, the deck was wet (it's supposed to be dry when you start this process) and I was out of Deck Wash. I also need to get out the hedge trimmer and trim back some of the plants growing around the deck. *sigh* Looks like the morning glories will have to be sacrificed to save the deck.
I used to put Water Seal on the deck every year and ignored the algae. Last year, I didn't even get the sealant on it. I bought some--there are three big cans of it sitting right there in the hall near the door to the deck--I just never used it. For some reason, during the past month or so I've been trying to catch up with all the chores I've let slide while trying to work full-time and write the rest of the time. Not sure why I've decided to take the plunge now, but like I said, it's about to do me in. I had to come inside and lay down on a towel on the bed under the ceiling fan in my undies to rest, cool off, and dry off...twice.
No, wait. The second time I did that was after getting out the rototiller and tilling up a spot to plant garlic. And then I cleaned the barn and fed the horses. THEN I came back and cooled off for the second time.
After that, I downed a gin and tonic with lots of ice and made spaghetti.
By the way, if you're looking for a really awesome pasta sauce, I highly recommend Gia Russa's Puttanesca. It is truly heaven in a jar. I put a link there in case you can't find it in the grocery. Some places carry it, but most of them around here don't. I brown a pound of Italian sausage and simmer it with the sauce for a bit. Here's a picture of the, um, empty jar so you'll know what to look for. Sorry. I wasn't thinking about blogging at the time...
The paneer, which is the Indian version of cottage cheese, turned out fairly well. Here's the LINK to the recipe I used.
I'd never made cheese before. It's pretty cool how the milk curdles when you add the lemon juice. Sam thought so too! Wish I'd taken more pictures. The cheese was supposed to be pressed for two hours, which is about how long I was working on the deck.
Budley called at about seven pm when he reached the final stop on the hike to tell me that he had a blister on his foot the size of Texas and wanted to know why I let him do such a crazy thing. I told him I wasn't aware that I had any say in the matter. Then I told him my deck story. I think his day tops mine. At least I don't have any blisters.
Now that all that stuff is done and I'm cooled off, rested, and reasonably sober, I'm thinking that when I finally get the deck ready for the sealant, I should try drinking a gin and tonic before I start. Might make the process go more smoothly--either that or I just won't care.