Eight Years and Two Doors

As of this blog post, the only way to tell where our kitchen used to be is because the sink and fridge are still hooked up. That’s right – it’s down to the studs. We need to back it up a quick notch though, since I haven’t posted any of the “before”. As of a few weeks ago this is what the outside of the house looked like.

House Renovation June 2015-20

You’ll notice two side-by-side doors, one new window on the far right, Andy in the process of installing a window on the left, and a terrifying heap of what the hell in the middle. Let’s walk through these before we get to the inside. Well, except for the window on the far right. We won’t discuss that one because it’s not gross, it was straight forward, and I can’t find any pictures. I may not have even taken them. Here’s me. Here’s the rails. I’m off them.

A crazy freak malfunction in a pneumatic nailer and one 16 penny nail straight through Andy’s thumb (I will save you the photos, but he missed all bone/nail/nerves), we have a new door to what will become the mudroom. In fact, we have two functioning doors side-by-side. Eventually the old door will become a wall with a fridge in front of it, but for now it’s like a fun house guessing game for the dogs of which door I’m going to let them out of in the morning.

House Renovation June 2015-4 House Renovation June 2015-5

If this didn’t look messy enough, let’s move on.

On the far left is the room that will become the new bathroom. This room, as you can see, also needed a new window pretty badly. It’s not that I hated the oddly long sliding basement windows, but I hated the oddly long sliding basement windows. Not only was the windows coming out, because – gross, it was coming out so we could fit the new layout of the bathroom. House Renovation June 2015-25

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House Renovation June 2015-34Tada! That one wasn’t too bad.

The old bathroom window was the kicker. Get your heave bucket situated firmly in front of you. At no point move it.

House Renovation June 2015-8This is the bathroom window from the inside. What a window, right? Well, it wasn’t ever put in properly. Shocking, I know. It was more of a hack in the side of the house. There’s nothing better in this world than a permanent closed window, which was installed improperly, in the room that gets tons of moisture.

House Renovation June 2015-10Oh yeah, that’s mildew and rot. Let’s go closer.

House Renovation June 2015-12Have you lost your dinner yet? No? Let’s try again.

House Renovation June 2015-13Still No? One more.

House Renovation June 2015-15FOUND ALL MY BOBBY PINS! Also, I just found your dinner spewed on the floor. You’d spew more if you could have smelled it.

Take it in, take it in.

House Renovation June 2015-18I think that’s all I’m going to leave you with now. I’ll be back with another set of “before” images of the house on Wednesday morning so I can try to get everyone up to speed pretty quickly.

Be safe, strong, and go empty your heave bucket.


Farm Update: June 2013

It’s almost hay season on the farm, with a few more weeks to go before harvest. This time of year also means it’s time to do one of the more glorious farm aspects—mucking out under the barn with the tractor. Our tractor is small enough to fit under the barn with the roll bar down, so that means every May or June Andy heads on down and gets to work.

DSC_4926-01DSC_4927-01There’s no two ways about it, a barn filled with fresh manure in the hot sun smells like roses. Roses that the cows have eaten and then digested and then crapped out.

DSC_4937-01Good job ladies and gents.

DSC_4928-01DSC_4936-01DSC_4931-01 DSC_4934-01It honestly doesn’t take too long to do, maybe 30 minutes or so. While it doesn’t get all the manure out, it gets enough. We could shovel the rest out but the farmer doesn’t seem to worry about it so neither do we.

DSC_4956-01DSC_4957-01 DSC_4959-01Eventually some of the fresh manure Andy mucked out will age and become compost for the gardens, while the rest will be spread back across the pastures to keep the greens populating that the cows love. Where some might find pungently horrible crap, I just think about the fact that it gives the cows more food to eat as the seeds in the manure re-seed the pasture, and with the composted manure it gives many of the neighbors soil an extra boost of nitrogen to help our gardens grow big and strong.

Some people might say happy life, happy wife but I think it’s happy animals, happy life. It might not rhyme, but it’s true.



This Just In

It’s extremely vital you know what it looks like around here when it snows. Specifically the snow from yesterday morning, because it is entirely different than snow from another morning which will be just as imperative to post about.  This is clearly news worthy information people, and who am I to deny you?  This has absolutely nothing to do with me being camera happy, so here are a few vital points.

(1) Do you recognize this?

This is the orchard, which was entirely clear of snow on January 1st, which I posted about here. I think it’s much prettier covered in snow. Remind me I said that when it’s May and everything is green and I tell you that it’s much prettier in bloom and all green than in snow.

(2) I love how the sun coming over the hill makes the entire road glow.

Yes, I looked both ways before I stood in the middle of the road to take photos. That makes it safe.

(3) Winnie is a huge fan of the snow. Granted, Winnie is a huge fan of most everything, but I think the snow is at the top of the list along with cookies, swimming, sticks and her blanket.


I laughed when she laid down to cool off after terrorizing Primrose by running circles around her—the snow was level with her back. This is her partially propped up on her front legs. Other things Winnie likes to do in the snow:

  • Play snow ball
  • Run like a maniac
  • Eat snow
  • Run like a maniac
  • Roll in it (she likes to roll in everything)
  • Lay in and bury herself
  • Dig. She is not allowed to dig in the yard and she knows it, but the second she sees that first big snow bank she becomes a digging machine. I’m pretty sure a digging machine is technically called a back hoe, excavator or front loader but I’ll stick with general “digging machine”.

Don’t you feel better now for knowing all of that about my dog?

(4) Once the sun comes up and hits the other side of the field, it turns everything bright blue. I love how pretty and clear the sky gets after a big huge snow. It happens pretty often and is a stark contrast to the gray sky while it’s snowing (which is happening again right now).

(5) I was once asked why we don’t hang our laundry out all year round. I hope this photo answers that question.

(6) After all the snow romping (later last night) warming up by the wood stove with Winnie sitting between my legs, something she has done since she was a puppy, is my favorite. She kept staring into the kitchen, over my thigh, at my brother in law prepping dinner and I told her not to beg. Winnie would like you to know she is extremely clever by looking under my leg instead.

If you ever need anymore vital information just check back here. I am sure to have it for you. You can thank me later for enlightening your day in the most intellectual way.

Much Love,