Saturday, July 22, 2006



It's been very interesting having visitors to the house, as we sit house-bound much of the time with work being completed for long days in a row. At least that’s been the way both mother's visits have gone, as they've been witnesses to many changes suddenly appearing with the continuation of our final renovation goals becoming complete and accomplished at last.

Thank goodness someone sees how much work we’ve done since arriving here!

Gardening perinneal nightmare, but I'm showing you the better side of the front garden bed. You just wouldn't believe it!

John & Betty, we need you here! *smile*

When my mother visited, she became involved in the our excitement and the flurry of activity with the barn raising (wink), the driveway pouring, the front porch covering & column construction, and other smaller details. She assisted me in cleaning garden beds, bending and pulling weeds out for hours at a time (!) , transplanting perennials, and assigning the hauling of brick duty to the children for surrounding the front bed using extra interlocking bricks. This allowed the raising the original brick laying to a second row on top, easier to keep the grass out of the bed while growing too. Just the front bed alone had three to four wheel barrow runs to the back compost!

So much gardening awaits us still, but in time, I’m hoping to have that project licked too.

Now that hubby's mother is here, she's been witnessing the rising of the fencing, all the fencing, from the wooden privacy fencing, to the dog and sport court chain link fencing.

The painter finally arrived back, after a long six week absence, so all the outer doors are now a wonderful blue color to match the brick veneer on the house, and the pewter colored paint on the trims has coordinated everything together for a final finish. In the photos I've enclosed, it's difficult to see how well the blue color matches, but believe me, it does!

Besides, it was getting to the point of not having enough hands to complete a few items ourselves, especially since hubby's vacation was cut short from two weeks to one, so when the painter was available, we rejoiced at having one less thing to do ourselves. Now only if the electrician will return for the lighting in the barn, though we heard he would be here to complete next week now. Yeah!

We had a glitch with the wooden fencing on the east side of the house, when we discovered the property line was further in towards the house than we had anticipated and the neighbor came over to walk the property lines with us. Not having a survey of the property with our legal transfers of the property ownership but merely a guarantee of the property lines paid for, we still weren’t exactly sure of the divider area between us and our neighbors to the east. We attempted to have a surveyor out to draft up exact lineage, however none were available during their busiest time of the year when we needed them present for the task.

Our neighbor didn’t exactly know either and though previously discussing the issue of placing a privacy fence between the back and front yards, he was fine with our original plans. He is the son in law of the original property owner next door, his wife and he had purchased her childhood home, in fact, our three surrounding neighbors the east, west and north, all have also purchased and reside in their childhood homes today.

Before they broke off this piece to sell, his father in law had given our neighbor and his wife the legal papers, he just couldn’t place them at the moment we needed them in our early planning... Luckily though he hunted for them this week and found them before we encroached too far into his legal area, and he has been so very friendly and kind enough to assist us with our property lines, let alone our whole settling in with the move here to the new community.

Fencing between the barn and the house on the driveway

We found out for certain, though both parties knew originally that the last post to the trees was encroaching. It hasn't been an issue between us to have the fence reach there, though later he wondered about down the line, if we ever sold in the future, a new owner might argue the issue of dividers because of the fencing permanency of encroachment and their rights.

Fence on the east side

At the end of the day, with posts cemented two feet in the ground, we all decided not to install the last wood panel between the two last posts towards his side, leaving a big gap there for now. It seems silly to have a fence up, only to walk around the last post, especially since there are two large double gates inserted in the fence itself. Oh well, now I suppose we should just agree to plant a nice huge prickly tree to edge the line, and allow the property grasses to grow and grow around it, the way a farm should look. It’s too bad, this issue was a little disappointing, but the way things go when there's so much wide open land to deal with.

Though the fence posts took an entire day to install last Monday, (thirty alone in the chain link fencing area), it was our good luck the concrete had settled enough in the high temperatures in the early hundred degrees the entire day, before the monster storm rolled through here. Sudden vicious winds rolled through blowing out every window screen in the barn windows and we realized the need to all run outside to secure everything down from blowing away. The garbage cans were already prepared and hauled to the roadside for the next morning's pickup, and without further ado, were grabbed and raced back to the garage so the insides weren't spewed all around to the neighborhood folk's chagrin. The patio furniture had to have a few bricks placed on each chair, the tables, the BBQ, and all the bicycles were secured to the racks. Just the trampoline remained unsecured, though a few bricks were placed on the legs. Not long after the gusts of wind began, they slowly died off just in time for the thunder to roar and boom about in the heavens above. Accompanying the clapping of thunder, it's companion lightning pals lit the skies, with forks plummeting towards the land below, high above it fell from the skies, a lighting festival showing encircling all 180 and more degrees in rotation from our view points. First there were forks to the south, and then to the north, back to the west, back and forth so no one could figure out exactly where the storm was! The worst of the wind storm we found out later, hit two hours to the east of us, with trees tumbling down, buildings struck and even campers injured terribly. Funnel clouds were all around, between our areas, something we hadn’t experienced before either. But, as I mentioned before, just like in the “Wizard of Oz” we do have the advantage of a storm area in the basement should we ever need it.

Today, every hand is on deck to shovel the gravel into the cracks between the wooden fencing portion against the driveway, and the two eldest are continuing to train the pups with their new freedom roaming kennels. It was fun to watch them first enter into their new abode, a perfectly assembled wooden "stall" with a door on latches, something likened as the youngest exclaimed excitedly to be "perfect for a pony for her someday" (Here we go again! Yikes!).

The new barn stall for the pups,
though perfect for a pony the youngest still dreams of!

Speaking of the pups too, their new adventure has them both totally occupied, firstly having to figure out the swinging doggie door built into the barn wall. The husky had no problems of course with her amazing agility, but not so lucky for the Labrador as she clumsily rose each leg to figure the darned thing out at last and is not lingering any longer to nibble on the door as it clunks her on the head on her way in or out of doors again. They've spent much of their first day upon the fence completion, clocking up miles and miles just sniffing and smelling their way around their barn stall, freely wrestling together, arguing over toys, running around back and forth inside the dog run and yard, then curling up together so sweetly, sleeping lovingly next to each other when sheer exhaustion creeps over them, and heavy eyelids droop eventually leading them both into a peaceful slumber.

Peek a boo, I can see you both!
Soon, they might jump on out into their pens though~

With their pool in their yard, they jump in and out, splish-splashing to their delights, and occasionally halt to see who or what is moving about around the property. Being a bird hunter, the lab bows to a hunter's stance and tail arcing into the air, browsing the many birds occupying the back grasses, pretending she is hiding, but oh so ready to pounce at any time. The husky's instincts are maturing giving way to her lingering much too long at the bunny's cage when out and about in the barn running free with the children, sending fear up the bunny's spine with him hopping speedily into his house to hide. Yep, I think they both know this pup's a small animal hunter and its beginning to hunt the bunny! Gulp...

Believe it or not, we're saving the red interlocking bricks to place around garden beds. They are truly in the way here, but save us from the lack of energy to move them at this moment!

This morning, our new day began a little cloudy, with everyone also laying about lazily stiff and sore from overproductive activities yesterday. Good news though, with the sun once again swiftly appearing to warm the outdoors towards the noon hour.

After a morning breakfast outing just down the road at the local golf course, we also toured about the pro shop, the banquet rooms, the entire facility in fact. Stopping at the spa though was real cute, when it was empty in the early hours from customers as yet, and the hostess was welcoming ushering us along to the various rooms prepared with candlelight warmth for the first clients to arrive for their ultimate pamperings of the day.

Stopping at the desk on the way to the exit door, hubby’s mother was booked in for her first ever relaxing facial there this afternoon. We teased her about being our “golf diva” for the day, when we found a brochure offering packages to the club’s guests naming them “Diva days”. After eighty years, it’s long overdue for her to experience something so simply luxuriously pampering and thrillingly delicious!

Diva queen for today!