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Thread: bats in the belfry?

  1. #1
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    bats in the belfry?

    Hey, folks,

    I think I'm going nuts! First, I've got drywall problems in the kitchen. Big argument with Doorlink over "to tape or not to tape, that is the question." She says "always tape." I say "tape when the seams in new drywall are beveled." Last time we went around this bend, when I was doing #2 son's basement room, I gave in, and you can still see the taped seam if you look closely. But it's her kitchen, so I suppose I'll just do what she wants, even if it's a huge hassle and won't work anyway...

    Then, I decided to put up crown (something I've never done before) in the bathroom as preparation and learning for the substantial crown job in the kitchen. Knowing we'd eventually need some crown, and knowing how bad I am at visualizing angles, we bought a "cut n crown" setup at the woodworking show a couple years ago. Well, you can imagine the end of that story. The DVD says "using this setup, you get a glueable mitre joint with the crown." Yeah, right! Glueable joint, my you-know-what! Only massive amounts of caulk kept that project from complete failure.

    So anyway, I've got tons of projects. Meanwhile, yesterday evening, I decided it was about time to go up and turn off the attic fans. Should have done that weeks ago. So I climb up there, and I'm crawling around, and I notice the insulation is disturbed. Dang! At first, I thought it was mice. Then I start looking around, and the mess is substantial. I start thinking squirrels. We have lots of them around here, but how are they getting in? Then I notice, way down at the end by the chimney, the walls are messed up. Something has chewed and pushed through the walls. Worse, I find little pieces of asphalt shingle on top of the insulation. So I crawl out, and go outside. No evidence of disturbed siding. So I'm going to have to get up on the roof and inspect the area around the chimney... which means several trips on the roof if there's something I have to fix.

    I'm not fond of the idea. It's a three story drop at the back of the house. Now, I used to be a backpacker, and spent some time mountain climbing. Yes, I did a 5.9 climb in Yosemite. Still, I don't like the idea of getting up on the roof. I knew a guy in Pa. who's in a wheelchair because he was cleaning his gutters. On his one story house!

    I don't know why I take this stuff on. I can still hear my father saying, as I was complaining about something like this: "I have no sympathy! *You* decided to buy a house!" He's right, I must be crazy!

    A belfry was a medieval siege tower. Later, they turned them into bell towers. Hence the bats! Squirrels, I guess, are the modern equivalent. Bats in the belfry, squirrels in the attic, crown in the kitchen... I must be nuts for taking all this on!

    Thanks,

    Bill
    Last edited by Bill Lantry; 11-09-2008 at 02:54 PM.

  2. #2
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    buck-up bill
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  3. #3
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    Do you still have your climbing gear? If so, use it!! If not, borrow some!!!! Make a couple pieces of wood to keep the rope from digging into the roofing at the peak, and the tails of the rafters. Tie off to a tree or frame of a vehicle. Much better to have a controlled decent in case of a mishap!! Jim.
    Coolmeadow Setters...
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  4. #4
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    Ah, the wonders of home ownership. Do what I do Bill; throw money at it.



  5. #5
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    Breathe! Breathe! Now breathe in and hold it . . . . . let it out slow . . . . .Ahhhh. I am a “list” guy. They help me break things down into bite-size pieces so I don’t get lost in the flood or look too far ahead and give in to despair

    I have them all the way from the gigantic long-running I’ll-never-get-this-done-before-I-die list down to the “short list”. The short list is the next 3 or 4 things I need to do to keep a project moving forward. Interrupt my short list priorities at your own peril . . .

    Over-organized? Probably. Highly anal? You bet. Is the syndrome weakening and allowing the sufferer to be closer to ‘normal’ with each generation? You have no idea.

    Hang in there Bill, there’s an end to the tunnel if we just keep moving.
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C. Clarke

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by glenn bradley View Post
    Hang in there Bill, there’s an end to the tunnel if we just keep moving.
    YUP, It's a bright light... or a warm glow for some folks.
    Darren

    To a small child, the perfect granddad is unafraid of big dogs and fierce storms but absolutely terrified of the word “boo.” – Robert Brault

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim O'Dell View Post
    Do you still have your climbing gear? If so, use it!! If not, borrow some!!!! Make a couple pieces of wood to keep the rope from digging into the roofing at the peak, and the tails of the rafters. Tie off to a tree or frame of a vehicle. Much better to have a controlled decent in case of a mishap!! Jim.
    Ditto on this suggestion. If you don"t have a harness, a lot of rental places carry them.
    By the way, if you decide to tie-off to the bumper of your vehicle, put the keys in your pocket, in case someone decides they need to run to the corner store for milk! You can imagine the consequences. It supposedly has happened, according to the internet

    FWIW, I discovered recently that bats don't like compressed air, but that's another story.
    Work safely, one thing at a time.

    Peter

  8. #8
    Interesting write up, but I was a bit confused on whether you found bats or squirrels? If it was bats, you can breath easier as they are easier to get rid of and do less damage overall. Squirrels in the attic though...now that is something to get rid of now! They do amazing damage and probably are worse then rats.
    I have no intention of traveling from birth to the grave in a manicured and well preserved body; but rather I will skid in sideways, totally beat up, completely worn out, utterly exhausted and jump off my tractor and loudly yell, "Wow, this is what it took to feed a nation!"

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by glenn bradley View Post
    I am a “list” guy. They help me break things down into bite-size pieces so I don’t get lost in the flood or look too far ahead and give in to despair

    I have them all the way from the gigantic long-running I’ll-never-get-this-done-before-I-die list down to the “short list”. The short list is the next 3 or 4 things I need to do to keep a project moving forward. Interrupt my short list priorities at your own peril . . .

    Over-organized? Probably. Highly anal? You bet. Is the syndrome weakening and allowing the sufferer to be closer to ‘normal’ with each generation? You have no idea.

    Hang in there Bill, there’s an end to the tunnel if we just keep moving.
    I am the same way Glenn, but I go a bit farther so that I can cram more into a 24 hour day then most. I write down what I want to do, then I add in a separate column how long I think it will take me. My lists look like this...

    Feed sheep 30 min R
    Make Hay rack 2 hr R T
    Fix sheep gate 1 hr R T
    Put in Fence posts 2 hr D T

    Cut wood 8 hr D T
    Groceries 2
    Move Hay/Cover 10 min T
    Build Sheep Sluice 2 hours D T
    Change Water 10 min
    Feed sheep 30 min R

    This was my list for today, and I will help decipher it. The tasks are easy to figure out, but the D and R stands for Rain and Dry because that helps me decide what I need to get done to take advantage of the weather. The T simply stands for Tractor because its always down to my dad's house. When its up here I try to get as many tasks done with it as I can. Because the hay was big round bales...I needed the tractor. I needed the tractor to get lumber for the hay rack from the sawmill too.

    Of course things always don't go as planned. Today it rained so I did not get to cut wood and my sheep hay rack went over time budget as it took me 3 hours to do instead of 2. Everything else went pretty much on my time budget. The sheep gate took an hour to fix and the fence posts took 2 hours to do. It was a rainy day thing I know, but I just forged ahead and got wet while doing it. I didn't melt. Now its 15:00 and I am doing groceries...or shall I say watching Alyson as my wife does groceries. Its pretty sad but I have to budget in time for that.

    The reason I show this is so that people can see how having an itemized list helps you get the most things done in a given day. If I am pressed for time, like say the wife says supper will be ready in 40 minutes, I know I can look at my list and know I can most likely feed the sheep and change the watering bucket. (30 minutes and 10 minutes=40 minutes of "free time")

    Just to do the list forces you to figure out how much time its going to take to get something done and that means your planning. You'll notice too there is no way I can do everything on the list. That's fine because the list is not there to simply check off as they are done, it is there so that I can figure out what needs to be done and the best time to do it. What doesn't get done, gets put on the next day's list...
    Last edited by Travis Johnson; 11-09-2008 at 08:20 PM.
    I have no intention of traveling from birth to the grave in a manicured and well preserved body; but rather I will skid in sideways, totally beat up, completely worn out, utterly exhausted and jump off my tractor and loudly yell, "Wow, this is what it took to feed a nation!"

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