More To Do

Moved this up from the previous blog with edits.

List updated 13 December.

Yet More To Do lists, priority ranked(?) (You'll recognize some of these from before)

  • We could get rain on Monday the 27th, so that means that I want to complete the downspout on my newly installed gutters. DONE. 0.31 inches of rain by my backyard rain gauge. Works well except the rain coming down the roof valley overshoots the gutter and splashes onto the patio. I can fix that easily enough. DONE2. Unesthetically fixed by cutting a piece from an aluminum baking tray and gluing it to the gutter.
  • My son has a family traditions day at school on Wednesday and we have to make a recipe from our culinary heritage, divide it in 25 bite size pieces, and send it with utensils to school. DONE (He thought it was tasty. His feelings were slightly hurt when his American cheese eating peers spurn our culinary traditions ;-) ).
  • Put front gutters in.
  • Get cotoneaster, morea, and jasmine out and down to chez frere. Jasmine DONE at the same time that I ferried cement board to his house Sun the 17th.
  • Get native plants in. Some done.
  • Call an electrician or three for estimates on service upgrades. Expecting $1500 to $2000 cost. Two sort of down (estimate of $1900 from Gene at One Stop Electric, but that doesn't include trenching the patio for a second ground rod attachment, $2400 over the phone estimate from Direct Electric Inc 310-978-8471 who advised me to call Edison to get my new meter "spotted" [approved as to location] at which point they would come by and give me a real estimate. Edison will be by on the 20th - I'll need to leave a map with preferred locations.), one to go. Apparently service upgrades have to be proven or justified somehow in the approval process with a "green sheet". Remodeling a kitchen seemed to pass as appropriate justification.
  • Pick colors and paint some sample areas on the house. Is there a service to color a digital photo beforehand? Step one complete: Called local favorite Supremepaint (Redondo Bch: 310-540-4456) . They have referred me to a computer product called Color Preview 2000 from Benjamin Moore and tell me that it will do the trick. Apparently they had it in stock until six months ago. I've managed to find and order Personal Color Viewer 2.0, on the Benjamin Moore web site which runs either as a web based application (free, but no digital imports allowed) and a downloadable / CD version (costs $10, but allows imported digital pictures). PCV 2.0 does not run nicely on my computer at home (Win2k). It works at work (Win XP).
  • Dump run Saturday early AM? Check with neighbor to see if they need anything hauled to dump. DONE. Got the neighbor's stuff too. The transfer station doesn't take large stumps, so I decided that my stump was medium. No one ran after me yelling.
  • Cut concrete on porch for weep pit - the second of my flood mitigation attempts. Tools are on hand. Dig pit as deep as possible. Need stackable concrete block, 12" grate, and gravel. Neither Lowes nor Home Depot have the stackable block that I need.
  • Cut porch concrete for ground rod placement. It's starting to look like I should just demo the porch concrete altogether now, before the electrical upgrade. Started by demoing the brick planter at porch's edge, but now am uncertain due to Edison requirement to "spot" the meter location. It could end up moving. I'm not too torn up though, the planter and the porch are going anyway.
  • Install attic vent (cut stucco, frame, paper, wire, repair stucco). I've now painted vent white. Need to cut a few framing members for inside the garage.
  • Complete electrical install near French Door. All parts at hand except outdoor lights.
  • Find a nice outdoor light or lights. Lamps Plus (18989 Hawthorne Blvd, Torrance, CA 90504) for purchase? Plenty of selection there, such as this one on sale. I really like this sale item - whimsical and not too "of an era" so that it would fit well into the no style / Ranch / Cal cottage / 50s tract theme that I have going chez moi. However, a tape measure confirms that it won't fit. Even the smaller one (not on sale at $134.99!! - Cotswold 12 1/2" High Down Mount Outdoor Wall Light) doesn't fit - too tall by 1.5 inches or so. Fiddlesticks! Home Depot has nothing and Lowes has only one possibility, based on several surveys of both stores' mechandise. Other places: Bellacor and Arcadian Lighting seem to have decent selection. DONE. Found a lamp at Lowes (at right) that was sized to fit, looks ok, and will do the job. At $13.47 I don't mind replacing it when I later decide I've found my ideal.
  • Establish Coverdell account. DONE (Had to use paperwork to establish the account at ETrade, but strangely my check hasn't cleared a couple weeks after it was mailed).


  1. German potato salad. The German variety is distinguished from the normal kind that is blamed for picnic illnesses by a vinegar dressing instead of mayo, bacon, and onions.

    Other parents had the foresight to think of fried or sugary recipes.

  2. I have a mayo-free tuna salad recipe along the same lines that is pretty good, although I can't really understand what you Germans have against mayonnaise, bacon and onions.

    Most of our family's favorite recipes are for baked goods. Unless you count things that pretty much nobody else likes, like sauerkraut filled pierogi, or haggis.