Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Spring Update

Spring has really arrived in Bowville… Birds everywhere, flowers out, tree buds are swelling, orchard trees are blooming. And, even our dear friend from Colorado, “Dick D” came out from snowy Denver to spend some time with us….. only this time we tried our best to mix recreation with his constant willingness to help on the house. He loved the house. The last time he was there it was May 2009. He was out for a week and left today.
Again, the pics tell it all. We actually went to Larrabee State Park and walked the beaches and the rocky coast on a beautiful day. Also went on a ferry ride for part of the day to get a whiff of the saltwater and views of the islands and the snow-capped peaks. It’s a beautiful place.
We completed a few projects too. Dick and Chris started installing the deck railings which we absolutely love. They add a finishing touch and actually seem to make the decks “larger” because now we can walk to the edge without the fear of falling off! We also made screen windows for the screened porch (logical choice) and Chris will be bringing the screen doors this week. That is about it for now. Finishing the garden, the screened porch, etc., etc., etc. mixed with some NW fun is on tap for the next couple months….

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Picking up the pieces ....

Once again we pick up the pieces and continue to make some progress on the homestead. So much of almost everything seems so surreal for the past months. My Mom and now my Aunt gone within five months. It is not right.
A variety of projects are underway….some big and some small. Deck railings are being welded…we will transport to get powder coated, and then the installation. Yeah. We all will feel so much safer with rails on the deck, and it should look great. Deb and I put up a wainscot on the screened porch. We are jazzed about it. Got some very very cheap cedar boards that are called "drops" from a larger board. Most lumber yards can't use/sell boards less than three ft. long, but we sure found a use! Couple screen doors, railing boards, and screens for the windows and we are set for the warm season on the porch!
Chris is working on the dumbwaiter. We think it is going to be great too. Much less expensive than we thought because Chris made short work of it by using plywood to line the shaft, and use wood “rails” for the guides for the basket. And we found a winch to use for the power train. Going to love it when it is in. I told Deb that I did not mind bringing wood up in 5-gallon buckets, but regardless how careful I am, I still got wood chips, etc. on the stair carpet and we are constantly vacuuming….. I can get exercise a whole bunch of other ways.... believe me!!
We decided to do some seasonal work too. Check out the pics of Deb and I building boxes for our raised bed garden. We had a great day building six boxes. Gorgeous weather. Once again we were like an assembly line putting them together. I found some utility grade cedar (from Canada) that I got a fantastic price on. We found inspiration for the design of the boxes from a garden I saw when bike riding. Did some modifications and away we went. Plan to finish most of the other boxes but are thinking of putting in a pond for ducks etc. which means we need to bring a machine through the garden area first. Gee, what a mystery…. two biologists wanting to put a wildlife pond on their property….:)
The sunsets are shedding some magnificent light in the house now and it is only going to get better. It changes everything. And, last but not least, we have been doing some nighttime experimentation with our bake oven and voila!.... Deb made her FIRST loaf of bread!!! ...a beauty I might add! Yummy too!!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Aunt Mary Ann

As much as we had hoped that 2010 would prove to be a "better" year, we are again brought to tears with the passing of my Aunt Mary Ann. I received a call from the North Olmsted police, and was told they had found my Aunt in her condo after a neighbor of hers had called saying she had not seen her in days. I was shocked. I was shaking. I immediately wanted to call my Mom…. I called Debbie and my sister Sandra. Both were in disbelief. I can still hear Sandra saying "oh no, oh no!!" I want to forget it.
Aunt Mary Ann was a wonderful woman. Loving, sharp as a tack, always in a good mood, and full of curiosity. Like my Mom, she was really interested in eagles. Last time I talked to her on Valentine's day, she had plans to come out and visit us and was asking if it was safe to be at the house with eagles near by….. so cute! I told her it would be fine…:)
I sent her all 190 or so pages of this blog a couple months ago for her to read. She amazed us by calling us saying she had read the entire blog in one evening and was going to read it again!! She told us how proud of us she was, and how she was terrified when she read about Debbie’s broken back and saw the x-ray photo! She was a very special woman and Aunt. We already miss calling her. It is just so sad.
The photos were taken at Christmas a few years ago when Debbie and I were in Cleveland. Too bad we did not take a photo with the three of us.