Grit Blogs > Adventures of Old Nebraska Dave

Making it through February

A photo of Nebraska DaveThere's not been much garden oriented work happening at the Urban Ranch this month. We had a battle against scabies over most of the month.  No pictures of that.  It was two weeks of horrific itching and house cleansing.  Anything with material had to be either sanitized or isolated for a week.  Scabies are little mites that burrow into the skin, lay eggs, the eggs hatch, feed on skin cells, and lay more eggs.  We battled through two house cleansing and two prescription cream procedures.  I think we are done with that plague.  We don't know where it came from and certainly wished it hadn't visited our house.  Bradley and I were covered from just below neck to the tips of our toes.  If you ever hear the word scabies .... run.  They can live on fabric for up to two days and is highly contagious.  When I visited my doctor, I pulled off my shirt and he stepped back a couple steps; made a comment about how itchy it looked; said he would call in a prescription for it; and scooted out the door.  You know it's bad when a doctor doesn't want to be near you. 

We got blasted with Storm "Q".  Well, we got about 9 inches at most.  However you know it's bad when the snow plow that plows the street can't make it up the hill past my house.  He did get the street plowed by coming up a shorter hill on the other side of my house and plowing down the longer hill.  Since I live on a street that has a T intersection on either end and most times the only traffic is those that live on the block long street, snow plowing our street is on the bottom of the list.  It's usually at least three days before the plow comes by.  The issue is not being able to leave the house but always getting back up the hill to the house on the return.  Storm Rocky gave us a whopping .01 of an inch of moisture.  Ha, we can scrape more off the windshield on any given morning than that.  That brings my area up to .87 of an inch for the month which is almost up to the average of .91.  March will be the key.  Our average moisture for March is two inches.  Hopefully, we can keep our averages up this year. 

Bradley finally got his wish for snow.  He and a friend of his spent two hours whizzing down the school yard hill.  His grade school has one of he best hills for sledding in the city.  Every snow attracts kids from all around.  Bradley had some one to sled with other than Grandpa.  I got to watch them slide down the hill for two hours from the comfort of my truck.  Yea!!Fort completed 

The ariel fort built for Bradley and neighborhood friends is starting to loose it's attraction.  This year a zip line will be added to the fort.  It won't start at the top of the fort this year.  The kids are only four foot tall so maybe about four or four and a half foot from the ground will be a good place to start.  It will have to be strong enough to carry my rotund self down the line.  That way I'll know that a kid of about 1/3 of that weight will hardly be a challenge for the line.  It will zip diagonal across the yard and be about 50 feet of sheer child adrenaline rush and end in a three foot high dirt pile.Cabbage sprout 

I started some Cabbage and Broccoli seeds at the seed starting station.  I have special sun spectrum florescent bulbs that are on 12 hours a day and a seed starting heat pad under the planted seeds.  After three days, as you can see, Cabbage is up.  It's supposed to take seven days to germinate.  Now I have to find something to put these cabbage plants in as the Broccoli has not germinated yet.  They are supposed to take from 14 to 21 days to germinate.  Right now I have them under the same saran wrap cover but that will have to change today.  Misting at least twice a day will be the routine from now on.  I sure hope the weather warms up or I might be in trouble with these plants.  I'm hoping to make some kraut this year and maybe some fermented pickles.  I have many gallon glass jars that would be great for that.  Yes indeed the gardening season has begun.  Yea!!  It won't be long before we all will be outside digging in the dirt again. 

It's that time of the year when girl scouts are selling cookies.  Today was spent helping a friend haul girl scout cookies. She is the cookie manager for her troop.  We hauled 218 cases of cookies from the district distributor to her garage.  That's 2616 boxes of cookies.  What a load.  You might think that's really allot but this is for one week.  She said that next week will be more.  Then there's two more weeks after that.  So I probably be called upon again to haul cookies the next three weeks.   

So how have you been spending your winter February days?  Do you have big plans for Spring?  Tell me about what exciting projects you have on the todo list.  In the mean time, I'll just right here sippin' on a cup of coffee waiting to hear from ya.  See ya next time. 

nebraska dave
4/25/2013 3:38:32 AM

Ilene, what a surprise. Since TV went stupid with all their reality shows, I made my own reality shows by actually doing something in reality. Gee what a novel idea. I have a friend that spends hours on facebook farmville. Why not just have a garden in the real world. Duh! The fort will be two year old and still standing so I guess that's a good thing. This year I may add a zip line to the corner of the fort that would allow the kids to zip down the hill and land in a dirt pile at the bottom corner of the yard. There's never a lack of things to do. This weekend I will be out in the woods camping doing guy things. There's man food (lots of meat and cholesterol laden deserts), gun power involved, and four wheeler activities. It doesn't get any better than that. Have a great GRIT day in the office.


ilene reid
4/24/2013 9:33:36 PM

Hey Nebraska Dave, I've sure enjoyed reading your blogs. Looks like you lead an adventurous life. Always busy with some project. Well, at least when the weather permits. The fort looks good. Last time I remember reading about it you didn't have all the added wood part. Looks like hours of fun could be spent there. Keep up the good reads and I need to check in more often to the blogs. I just might miss something!


cindy murphy
3/11/2013 12:04:28 PM

Scabies, Dave?! Wow! I thought that was an old pioneer disease, or something pirates got....probably I'm thinking of something else that's escaping my mind right now. I've heard of scabies but had no idea it was caused by an insect. Hope you are all non-itchy and relieved of the critters now. I don't think we are quite done with winter here - we had snow last week, and though it got above freezing this past weekend, there's more snow in the forecast for this week. Maybe I'll have a chance to get the skis out a couple of more times before they go into storage. Enjoy the day, Dave.


nebraska dave
3/10/2013 12:33:36 AM

Mary, you and me both hope that itch don't come back. I've never experienced anything like that hope never to have to again. I brought my little shamrock babies out to meet the real world yesterday. The temperature was a nice 50 degrees with very little wind. The sun was not out much but at least the little plants got a taste of fresh air. After a couple hours back in the deep dark depths of the basement under grow lights they went. They are looking real healthy. Have a great garden day and thanks for stopping by.


mary carton
3/8/2013 4:08:30 AM

Hope the itch doesn't come back. We had snow flurries the other day and Saturday temps are supposed to be back in the 70's. Last year at this time I was already mowing grass. My tomatoes are about 3 inches high and ready to transplant in larger containers. I bet your broccoli will be fine.


nebraska dave
3/1/2013 10:38:34 PM

Joan, thanks for leaving a comment. I'm glad you don't know about scabies. It's my first encounter and hopefully my last. It doesn't look like spring is quite here in Nebraska for at least another week. Every day show cloudy for this week's forecasts. We had some snow flurries today but no accumulation. I had planned on my broccoli seeds taking two weeks to germinate. Well, they are up about 1/4 inch in just five days. I am hoping for an early spring or I'll have some issues with big broccoli plants. I may start some more in a couple weeks in case the ones I have started now turn into leggy spindly useless plants. Have a great day thinking about the garden.


joan pritchard
3/1/2013 2:31:21 PM

You made it through to March 1, Dave! I've never heard of scabies, and I'm a farm girl! We had bed bugs when I was a kid that i thought were just disgusting, but never scabies. Since this is a new month, i am going on a field trip with another naturalist today. Its the Wichita Lawn and Landscaping show and there is always a smile on my face from entry to exit. By the way, we had 16.8 inches of snow at my house. Would have had more but some of it melted on landing. Hello spring!