Homestead Update: March 1st 2014

February was cold. It snowed kind of a lot and we spent most of the time just keeping warm and eating food and less time on projects. That being said – we did do a few fun things in February… despite the efforts of idiotic Home Depot employees. Ask me how much i love the Home Depot.

March 1, 2013:

March 1, 2014:

I love these before and after pictures from the early months – i almost don’t remember how scary the place looked: nasty, rotting tile roof, ancient windows, no fence for the yard. Man. We’re taming this place! We started with the major ‘needs’ of the house: roof, windows, well, septic, yard, flooring and now we’re beginning some cosmetic stuff, inside and out.

Our master bathroom is huge. HUGE. And very masculine with black counters, a weird black tub and a tiny little sink stuck in the middle of the huge counter. While i was in the barn mucking about (literally) i perchanced to notice something large and heavy mired in the mud…. What’s this….. a SINK! A lovely, cast iron Koehler sink in darned good shape! Why don’t we rip out that nasty little sink and replace it with this huge one? So what if it’s a kitchen sink – i can always use the bathroom for soaking fleeces, right? And since the sink was free, we splurged on a lovely new faucet that turns on with the flick of a pinky finger. Swoon!

Here’s to my husband learning about plumbing and doing a great job on his first try! And by first try i mean after 8 trips to Home Depot after being advised incredibly ineptly by even more inept employees. Yeah: the answer is i HATE Home Depot.

I had my own little project going outside. Our house still looks pretty nasty from the outside- new siding slated for summer 2015, at least one wall of it, so i thought it would be nice to plant a nice little shrubbery in the front, a la the nights who say NEE. The Benton County Native Plant Sale comes around every February and i took teh opportunity to plant a mess of Mock Oranges to add to my big hedgerow in the front yard and to make a lovely stand in front of the kitchen window where i’ll also plant some Alyssum, pansies, and a nice row of bulbs (starting with some birthday Crocus from my sweety). I used some of the old facia from the roof repair to begin the grass/planter boundary and stirred in a mess of rabbit poo for fertilizer. Love having a barn full of ‘free’ fertilizer!

More information on hedgerows to come! Last year’s trees are coming back great and i can’t wait to see how the mock oranges add to it. On the animal front – Sugarplum the duck is still nesting and we hope for ducklings on the 27th! Woot!

And finally, in reflection of the snow: we discovered that yes we DO need 4wd and thanked our lucky stars we had the woodstove to warm and feed us and a pile of firewood to keep it burning hot. We both enjoyed the quiet the power outtage brought, but the lack of refrigerator hum was troubling at the same time. Luckliy the 13 inches of snow acted as a good cooler for our milk and the chest freezer barely raised temperatures since it’s so full of meaty meats. We both took the time to partake in simple things: my husband sketching and me on my spinning wheel. I sure didn’t mind having the coffee maker back when the power came on, though! Hot tea and toast on the woodstove is fine, but electric bean grinders are a useful tool. 😉

Lots of fun projects on the horizon! And check out my latest big indoor project- a new website for my Fiber Friends! It’s been a labor of love that i hope pans out… working as a full time artist and part time homesteader/farmer type is not exactly…. lucrative. 😉 Let’s hope it can be!

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