Saturday, May 31, 2008
Behind it is a royal blue Centaurea, not quite in bloom. I hope the Primulas last 'til the Centaurea comes out.
In other news from the Blue and White Garden... This Brunnera - also from Bill's woodland.
And Phlox divaricata. Bill gave me this years ago. I don't think it's from his garden. It's a native plant but I think he grew it especially for this spot.
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
But I'm not too happy about it. I'll have to remember to keep the screen door closed.
Monday, May 26, 2008
The view to the east includes this small garden. (Top, before weeding; bottom, after.) I started this garden years ago primarily to eliminate the need to mow among the trees. I put in a few hostas for structure and transplanted some native ferns. Most of the rest of the plants are native. So the maintenance is mostly deciding which weeds to favor over others.
I always eliminate dandelions. I like them and I have plenty in the lawns. But they're too aggressive in the gardens.
And I always preserve B's favorite, wild geraniums. They're beautiful and a bit too delicate to make a statement without encouragement.
I was reflecting on my choices as I weeded. Take out Creeping Charlie (too aggressive - and face it, no matter how much I pull out, it will always be there); keep most of the Lysimachia (attractive ground covering foliage with great yellow flowers in season.) Keep some of the Celandine and a few patches of violets. It turns out that most of my efforts are to steer the plants I like to places where they look good.
Saturday, May 24, 2008
Anyway, here's the picture later in the day with the temporary sink in place.
And the view of the creek and the bridge from the kitchen window.
This is the living room last week before windows.
And now, though the window is partly hidden by the sheet rock leaning against it. There's a great view north to the garden (and primary deer grazing area.)
Picture the woodstove on the left and the computer desk on the right. On the very edge to the right is the door to the bedroom.
In all honesty, they liked the old sliding door just as much. But I love this one. I can open it with one hand and without throwing my entire weight behind it. You know the routine: let the cats out, let the cats in etc all day long. Three cats out, one in, two out, one in and so forth.
Not to mention how much easier it's going to be to go out to the deck with a drink and a snack in my hands.
Thursday, May 22, 2008
This inside second floor view shows the connection to the log house. On the right, where you see the ladder, is actually where the stairs come up and the apartment door will be there soon. The bathroom will be on the left. In the middle will be a closet and, eventually, a door to the second floor of the log house.
More pictures later. There's an army of workers out there now and I'm going to work for some relative peace and quiet.
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
It was replaced with this "Sun Tunnel" somewhat like the ones we have at my office. There's a lens on the roof and a highly reflective tube through the ceiling to this diffuser.
This "after picture was taken with no electric light and no flash. I should measure the light. But it's as bright as a florescent and I can easily work at my desk with no electric light. This room has no windows. So the Sun Tube also means I don't have to turn on the light just to walk through to my bedroom. I can't wait to get more of them! Let's see, one for the top of the stairs, one for the bedroom hallway, another near my favorite reading chair...
The building guys had never seen one of these. So, I I was happy to catch this highly unusual event on film: men reading instructions.
Saturday, May 10, 2008
Sure enough. As we started to clean up the pile of scrap lumber, we found this nest with fifteen(!) eggs. You have to admire the craftsmanship. Carefully arranged walnut leaf stems.
What to do? I want to move the lumber. And I want to save my new garden where she's been dustbathing.
Greg stepped in. Last week I gave him some eggs to incubate with his grandchildren. He offered to add these to the eggs in his incubator.
Last night the hen was roosting forlornly halfway up the new back stairs. I had no trouble picking her up and returning to the chicken coop. I feel a little bad about that. But it will be nice not to see new damage to the garden every day.
There's one hen still at large somewhere in the yard. I haven't seen her yet this morning, which leads me to believe that she's nesting somewhere, too.
And Greg and Gary.
And all the helpers whose names I get mixed up.
They show up like clockwork with incredibly noisy tools, creating unbelievable temporary chaos.
But with all due respect for the builders, this is my new best friend.
Incidentally, it locks, it's energy efficient and beautiful.
But the big deal is that it opens. And closes.
Those of you who've visited here know that I've almost never had a door that open without hauling on it or closes without kicking it and leaning on it. You know I have a simple life here. And I tend to make do with daily inconveniences rather than spend any money. And I especially resist replacing things if the old, barely functional thing, however inadequate, will have to be discarded. In this case, the old door can be reused in the new space between the back door and the new garage. It will help me remember never to take for granted the ease with which my new door opens and closes. And locks.
Watch this space for the new patio door leading from the kitchen to the deck.
Sunday, May 04, 2008
Yikes. I'm getting the full impact of the fact that this is really an entirely new house attached to the existing one.
You have to appreciate these stairs. I worked really hard to make this design work. I love Brud Nash and his crew. They never tell me something can't be done. Brud says, "Nothing's impossible. It just takes a little longer." Just wait 'til I show them how I want to connect the new second floor to the existing one.
Murphy thinks the stairs are okay.
Meantime, we finished repairing the pasture fence and brought Charlie home. Not as easy as it sounds. Apparently he's fallen in love with one of the neighbor's horses. He whinnied and looked back while I walked him the entire half-mile home. Back in his own pasture, he took the full 150 yard length of it at a full gallop several times, jumping the four foot wide drainage ditch as if he were half his age. I wish I had pictures of that.
While we waited for Charlie to settle down, we proceeded with one of the other ongoing projects: the garden fence. For some reason we've decided to get serious about keeping deer out of the garden. I've always compromised by resisting the temptation to grow lilies and rhododendrons and resigned myself to a certain amount of damage to the blueberries and fruit trees. Come to think of it, that's no compromise. It's a total victory for the deer. So, we're putting up this six-foot fence.
We removed quite a lot of sod. And moved it to the chicken yard. They're really appreciating the grubs and slugs that came with it. I'll keep you posted on how long it takes them to completely scratch it up and return it to it's original condition as a dustbath.