My Daughter got a new camera for her 20Th B-day Sunday. Here are some of the many photos she took at our new place. She didn't get any of the beautiful pine trees on the property--I hope to get some later. I didn't post the photos of the chicken coop and all that yet because Seller still has an awful lot of 'junk' on the land and I'd like to get some photos after its cleaned up. I HOPE He will have it all off in the next few days, its getting down to the wire here, but he has made a big dent in it so that is encouraging.
We went out yesterday and Hubby & #2 Son (our at home college student) were busy wiring and plumbing and fixing things. They have put in many hours per day since a few days after we closed. We are a little slower getting ready for the rough-in inspection because Hubby insists on repairing anything he sees that isn't straight or done to his liking--and that is a good thing! Its good because this is the time to do that--not later after the walls are covered.
Daughter and I were going to work outside--it was beautiful--but I was not sure exactly 'what' to do with the Seller's junk still in our way. Instead we donned face masks and cleaned up the basement. We hauled out some junk including an old transmission and piled it up with some other things for the Seller. We swept up the floor and the 'hurricane shelter/pantry/root cellar' which is an underground room full of wood shelves built by the seller. We started yet another burn pile and decided to continue to let that one build until New Year's when we can come out and have a little celebratory fire maybe. There were some large items to be pushed into tidier positions and when we were finished the basement looked great. Hubby was well pleased as it is a better work environment for him now. He has set up a large work area down there. He hauls his table saw and bench to and from the house every day as he doesn't want to leave it on site overnights. I probably should not have been sweeping--the dust cloud was incredible-- but I did use a mask and it felt good to FINALLY have been of some use out there. Our dust masks were filthy when we finished so I feel properly admonished now having seen what I could well have been inhaling.
I hauled some of my plants to the house yesterday. I guess I would like to get a bulldozer or a bobcat or something and just clean up the land and then plan where to plant things but that is likely not in our budget. Instead I am going to just 'study' and think and figure out how to make things nicer here and there a little at a time. I was thinking I could pick up some pine straw bundles and stacks of old newspaper and bring a little of that along with a little compost every time I want to plant something. That way I can mix the compost with the red dirt, plant my plants, put 8 layers of wet newspaper around the base and cover with pine straw. A little at a time, doing that it will be better. One thing I do have plenty of is TIME as this house is all mine and I don't have to finish anything planting wise quickly--I can work on it the rest of my life--which who knows? God willing could be a long time. ;)
Had a quick email from #1 Son this morning. He has been missing some work due to 58 inches of snow in his part of Idaho. His wife is down to only 3 days per week and soon will be taking leave for a few months. They are understandably 'tight' in finances. I know how that feels. Baby's due date is Saturday and we are all just really excited about that. I know I will LOVE being her Gramma!! Our plan is that as soon as Baby makes her appearance in the world we will purchase two tickets for Hubby & I for a weekend about 2 weeks away. We will spend most of two days flying there and back, and two days just visiting our Son, His beautiful wife, and our new Grand baby. Daughter-in-Love has lots of family and friends out there so we aren't needed to 'help' only to come and cuddle and love and be happy. :) Therefore our visit will be brief to keep out of thier hair and because we have so much to do here as well. I WISH I could bring them all here to live--maybe some day? You never know.. but if not I know they must have their own life as we did.
#3 Son up in Milwaukee called Sunday. Many of the folks he works with were laid off after the holiday. He is still there. He's a good worker so that is probably why. In a non-union place if you work hard it matters to your employer. Its good for him we think that he gets that recognition--which he often does. He was always 'the shy one'. Hubby said he wishes #3 would come home as he sure could use him right now. He also said that although he misses him and does wish he were here, he thinks its best he be on his own working in the world right now, building up his self-confidence and saving his money. Sometimes what is good for the parents is not what is best for the child, you just have to let go. They need to grow up and they are not our possessesions but rather our offspring. He has sprung off I guess, like #1, we miss him.
Today--I am working several hours. The first part of the day I will be doing things around the house and running an errand or two. I need some good seed start mix--I'll go to the nursery for that and then stop quickly in a grocery store. I have really not bought much for groceries in weeks here, I don't seem to be running down much--That is the advantage of having kept a good pantry and freezer all these months. I bought just a few things yesterday but I need to pick up sandwhich supplies I think today--that's about it. I don't think I will go to the house today. It is a 30 minute or so drive from here and my work is 30 minutes too--in a different direction.
One thing I am finding out about building a new house is that you get 'ideas' of what you will do and when you get out there, it can go completely different ways. The problem being the reality of the job can be overwhelming sometimes or you just see it isn't the best use of time to do what you were thinking. For me, since I am not the person who will do the construction type work --that's really the guy's thing--its a waiting time. I can't get at much of the land to clean things up since the Seller has so much of his clean up left to do. That always frustrates me.
My job--at this time--is basically making whatever I can better and ensuring that food, laundry and such details are taken care of daily. I wash work clothes daily because they are quite nasty and our present house being small I don't want to pile anything up. Obviously the new place is pretty big.
One thing with the new house is I have never tried to landscape a place that is so tall! Or paint a place so tall. The house is built into the hill somewhat but the basement--which is a huge space-- has I think about a 10 foot tall ceiling. Eventually, Hubby wants to finish and use that space in some way--other than for just work space. Meanwhile it makes the house seem gigantic to me when I think of how to plant around it. What do you plant around so tall a space? I'm thinking all the time.
The front of the house sits atop a wooded hill. From the road you see it a block away above the pines--it looks impressive from a distance. Now there is a door there because the Seller had intended to wrap deck all around the house--up on that level. Two of the decks are mainly in--and we will use those and finish them as soon as we can. The deck that needs to be built in the front--well we really do not have time or budget for that right now--so the door will need to be removed and sided over. I am thinking we may put in a large window and eventually patio doors leading to a deck--but maybe not for a LONG time as there simply are other priorities that we must spend $$ on first. (like drywall, flooring, appliances, cabinets...) We cannot do everything we want at once, that's just how it is.
None of us are real keen on baby blue--we were going to repaint the siding in a more neutral brownish gray tone. I spent some time choosing colors, paint brand and type but we then decided with the height of the building--which would make repainting the finished part that is up already pretty difficult, and the need to not spend $$ we don't have to spend--we will live with baby blue for a few years. So be it. Better to get the whole thing done than to get picky on that. Its not like the structural things that really should be dealt with now.
I didn't post the many photos of the back of the house or all the rooms that are basically about the same--wood and windows right now. Once Hubby & #2 Son finish what they are doing--we hope this week-- then comes our rough-in inspection and then assuming it passes we get busy insulating the walls. That's going to be a chore--but its something the kids can do unsupervised when they are free during the week and we can all do nights and weekends. Things will be hodge podge with work hours then because Hubby will not have his 2008 vacation days anymore and we will have our 4 day weekend to see the new baby and Daughter has a trip out to visit her boy friend in California and school starts back up for #2 Son. All the things that have to be worked around. My view is that we just take it like the ants in the proverb. Just keep on punching away at everything in sight whenever it is possible and it will get done. If you ever step on an ant hill--especially our dreaded fire ants here, you will see that ants have a definite 'get 'er done attitude' and are not likely to be stopped very easily.