Monthly Archives: June 2014

Birthday Wish List

Birthday Wish List

As the round of birthdays are fast approaching (august for both Hubby and I), I find myself contemplating what I want for my birthday. No matter what I think of, it is something for the house, not really something for myself. New clothespins, an apple or weeping willow tree, drywall for my craft room walls… etc. Its amazing how we go from asking for popular toys as kids, gift certificates to the mall as a teen, to a case of beer as an adult. Now as a homeowner, my wishlists, to-do lists and honey-do lists all revolve around fixing up, improving, repairing or removing things around the house or the yard. So I’m trying to really think about what I want that doesn’t scream “I just bought a house and need stuff”. Today I witnessed a few swallows hanging out on the clothes line, and I think a bird house would be nice. But do you do single family? A swallow birdhouse/mansion is usually huge, and would probably need it’s own pole as I doubt our poor old clothes line post could handle the weight. Or maybe a bat house. I’m sure hubby would love anything that will host critters that will reduce the amount of bugs out here (I’ll save hubby’s displeasure with the bugs to another post). I’ll have to put more thought into it, although to simply be able to plant a tree each year would make me happy.

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It’s Fence Time

It's Fence Time

Tis the season! The sun has come out, and its the first haying cut of the season, which means our neighbour and past owner of the house will be cutting the back field. While he was owner of this house, he actually used the back third of the property as his field, so we’ve got hay where we’d eventually like grass. Since we love our neighbours, and they seem to love us, our farmer has been cutting the hay in time for us to start construction on our black chain link fence that was delivered to us last week. Over $4000 in fencing and we still need to install it ourselves. We have over 80 posts to install and over 14 rolls of chainlink.
Day one of install went slow, painfully slow as my dad, and captain of construction, who is a perfectionist took his time to measure and set the first few poles in order to line us up properly for the rest. Hubby, my father in law, and our friend grappled with the two man auger, and dug all the holes for the cemented poles and my step mother and I helped pour cement and level posts. It was a hot and sweltering day and we didn’t get a quarter of the work done. We knew it was a major project but we didn’t realize just how slow it was going to be. BUT when you want something done right, take your time, make sure it’s done perfectly and it will last for many years. My dad will be returning tonight to help take down a dead tree from our neighbours yard that looks like it will have a death wish to land on our future fence. (I procured permission from our neighbours by bringing them a banana bread fresh from the oven, and we even get to keep the wood when the tree comes down). Hopefully within a week or two I can finally post a picture of the actual fence… but right now our yard is just a perimeter of poles sticking out of the ground.

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Our Lawn Tractor

mowerSummer is in full swing, our grass was starting to go to seed and our lawn mower had yet to arrive. True to form, my dad came to our financial rescue with one of his frankenstein creations. I’m not sure how old the tractor is, or even what make it is. But it is bright orange, the labels are hand written on as years of wear and tear have faded any semblance of instructions, and it puffs black smoke out it’s side when worked too hard. Oh and did I mention it backfires when you finally shut it down after a hard days work, like one final fart out of an old man after his workshift. My dad and my grandfather had put much love into the machine, and it was finally delivered two Friday’s ago (life with a baby means blogging takes a back seat). My dad and I did a few rounds of the yard that night and our neighbours must have hated us as we chugged across the yard at 9pm at night. The next day, Hubby’s day off, we attempted to slay the grass (aka. the hay field). After a few rounds of the yard, Frankenstein up and died and as I sat in it’s seat, swearing up a storm and banging my head against it’s steering wheel in utter frustration, our neighbour across the way, true to country neighbourliness, came to the rescue. As we couldn’t figure out what was wrong, he decided to help us out by bringing his mower over to lend a hand. Soon he was back with his shiny mower, looking like it was straight from the Sears catalogue, and soon enough, after twice around our “field”, his machine died. He had the genius idea to boost it, thinking it was the battery, and soon we had both machines up and running again after a boost from my truck. Hubby and the neighbour slogged through the long grass, both machines suffering with the length, but soon enough disaster struck again and the neighbour’s mower quit, this time for good. A cracked engine block. Frankenstein soon followed, luckily just needing another boost. I think we boosted Frankenstein 4 times that day, and Hubby had to help our neighbour push his mower back across the road. We’re thankful to have such great neighbours, who admit that they hadn’t maintained their mower before the season, and didn’t blame us or the long grass at all (although I’m sure offering to hack away at our field must have sped up their machines demise). After several hours the lawn was cut.
The next day we were out raking the grass trimmings that blanketed the lawn, and re-mowing areas of grass that had bogged down under the weight of our machine. Hubby and his friend had to drive my truck to the back of our property several times in order to boost Frankenstein where he died without warning whenever he felt like it.
Last night we had our neighbours over to thank them and we provided a feast of pulled pork sandwiches from the smoker and my dad’s famous three bean casserole. And today Hubby mowed the lawn again (this time much easier since it’s a “normal” length now) and Frankenstein weathered it like an old champ. After his initial boost to get started there was no dying, no furtherboosting and only with minimal black smoke and one signature back fire fart when he quit. (the tractor, not hubby)

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A Great Country Idea

A Great Country Idea

A neighbour and friend of mine gave me a great tip to keep my clothes pins from flying all over my yard and to keep them dry when being stored outside. My present mode of storage was an old plastic strainer that would blow over with any gust of wind, scattering the clothespins throughout the lawn and under the deck. My stash of pins was steadily diminishing since each time this would happen, I would come up with fewer pins from my search. My friend suggested a hanging planter to house them. Low and behold this past weekend, while out yard sale hunting with her I came across a planter (since I only purchased a flat of coleus plants this year I didn’t have one in my stash of junk in the garage). For 25 cents I picked it up and it fits perfectly on my clothesline elevator. Although it’s hidden by our meat smoker right now, but until we can build our dream deck, space will be limited. The holes in the pot allow for rain water to drain away and the hook is great for convenience. Now I need to head back to the dollar store for more clothes pins.

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