Well, that was an unanticipated, almost 3-week, hiatus from my blog. I’ve been busy and I’ve been exhausted. I haven’t been sleeping much because my 10-month old still gets up 2 to 6 times per night. And only 2 times constitutes a good night. We have bedtime, second bedtime, sometimes third bedtime. He’s usually up again around midnight, then at least once more after that… although every two hours has been the standard. Last night it was midnight, 1 am, 1:45, 3:30, and 6:45. That, of course, was after bedtime and second bedtime. We almost had third bedtime but he only fussed for about a minute and fell back asleep.
Only once in recent weeks was the lack of sleep self-inflicted – I stayed up until 1:15 am on election night. I’m not going to open that can of worms, but I watched it up until the AP called Pennsylvania. And I found out the ultimate result around 3 am…. and I’ll bet you can guess why I was up then….
Backtracking a bit, the day before Halloween we had our obligatory baby in a pumpkin photo shoot. Here’s a photo while we were getting things set up…
For Halloween the kiddos were an astronaut and an alien… our “Space Oddities,” if you will.
A few days after Halloween, my in-laws came to stay with the kiddos and my husband and I went to a national convention in Madison for a professional organization that my husband is a part of. Having lived in Wisconsin for the better part of 16 years, I had never been to Madison before. We spent two nights there. I slept through the night, ate pizza that I didn’t have to spend two hours preparing, toured the capitol, and saw a vice-presidential motorcade. The convention was pretty good too 🙂
Then there were our water woes….
My husband did some work on the plumbing and electrical in our basement. We’ve had a water softener ever since we moved in – it came with the house – but the water for the barn was plumbed to go through it. So once we got cows and started pumping 100+ gallons a day we stopped using it. It became cumbersome to always go downstairs and flip valves open and closed, so one day the water softener got bypassed and left that way.
He reworked the plumbing so the line that goes out to the barn branches off before the softener. So we can use the water softener!! YAY!! Not so fast…. Now our water was coming out of the tap orange.
He flushed out the tank that pressurizes our water system. Lots of gunk came out, but the water was still orange. At first we didn’t know if it was just gunk that had gotten disrupted from when he was working on the pipes (we do have a lot of iron in our water), but it kept recurring and eventually we isolated it to the softener itself. So we regenerated the softener about every day… and you should have seen the filthy red-orange sludge that poured out! But it still didn’t help.
Here’s where the water softener backwash drains (the pipe at the top is from the softener) to give you an idea of what was coming out of it…
So last week we called the water softener guy and scheduled them to come out.
In the meantime… Saturday night around 1:30 am (I was up… again, you’ll never guess why…) my husband had just thrown a log on the fire. I smelled something weird and asked him what kind of junk he threw in there because it smelled like he had thrown some plastic in the furnace. But it was oak. So we went down to investigate the smell, and the odor drew me into the room with the softener, water heater, and pressure tank. We didn’t see anything, thought the smell was dissipating, and attributed it to the air flow in the basement – that it just sucked the odor I smelled from the wood furnace into that corner.
We went back to bed, but my husband couldn’t sleep and about half an hour later went back down and noticed some soot on our water heater. Long story short, there was something wrong with our tank and there was water condensing and dripping onto the thermostat, which shorted out and burned up all the wiring in the water heater. Luckily it had tripped the breaker. I smelled it when I did because the furnace blowing picked up the smell and transported it through the house.
We had someone fix the wiring on the water heater on Monday, but when it was back heating Monday evening the condensation started again, so we ended up with new water heater yesterday (all covered by warranty).
Just as the plumber was finishing up installing the water heater, the water softener guy showed up. I guess it’s good to know we didn’t call them for no reason – the resin bed in the softener tank was shot. So they put in a “loaner tank” while they take ours back and repack it.
Now our water is clear, soft, and hot. All is good on that front.
My husband also redid the wiring in that room… recessed lighting on a switch and a new outlet (no more bare bulb on a pull chain with a plug that’s part of the light fixture).
He even put directional lights towards the pantry so you can see it much better now!
In other news, we had our first toddler baking adventure – cupcakes!
It went well enough that we had our second toddler baking adventure – more cupcakes!
I’ve also been working on a sewing project that’s been taking up a lot of my spare time – more on that later, I’m sure.
And while my husband was doing all the stuff in the basement, I was working on our Christmas shopping. I’m not going to beat last year, but it’s close! Last year I was 100% done with everything (even had it wrapped) the Saturday before Thanksgiving. I’m not sure I’m ever going to beat last year… not wanting to waddle my 9 months pregnant self through busy stores was strong motivation to get done early. But, my husband and I just need to figure out what we’re getting for ourselves and maybe pick up a few more things for the kiddos, otherwise we’re done for this year.
Whew! It has sure been an eventful few weeks around here! If you don’t mind me, I’m going to excuse myself and go scrub the orange stains out of my bathroom fixtures now…
Today’s WordPress daily post topic is “filthy“