Saturday, February 27, 2010

It Keeps Falling

Our yard has been snow covered since about December 19 2009.

WV does not normally stay snow covered. At least in my neighborhood. So what is the deal already. Ok, I know, everybody out there either has had it worse or has the same complaint.

This little frog dude wants to have his say though.Can anyone make it stop? Please? My skin is starting to wrinkle!

I decided the birds could use some of the food that I had stashed for them, but never seem to remember to put out. So yesterday I filled up the feeders and today the birds are working on emptying them.

These cardinals are enjoying the smorgasbord, which is a scandinavian word from my childhood. It means dinner is going to be Great! Here they have some safflower.

And this feeder has a mixture in it that the birds aren't cleaning up too quickly.
I figure it might have too much milo in or something they don't like as much as their preferred type of seeds
The weather might keep them from being so picky though. It is snowing again.

Here is a Downy Woodpecker trying out the Suet bar.
And here a little bird is on the finch feeder. I don't know if it is a Finich or not though.

This is a big bird we call a Roof Cleaner.
FabHub decided the roof of the side porch doesn't get enough sun to melt right, so he climbed up there to shovel the snow off. There was just a bit up there.
A few days before that he shoveled the snow off of the deck too. It really is insane around here.
You might even see the ice build up above the gutter. We keep taking down the hanging icecicles, but there isn't much we can do. The chimney runs through the attic space creating heat, which melts the roof and then the ice freezes on the eaves. If anyone has an idea of how to solve that I would listen... and then get FabHub thinking about it. :) After reading some it looks like more shoveling off of the roof would help, but then so would normal weather!
Well, that is the latest update. Take care everybody.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Done Deal

What did he do? FabHub bought himself a new truck. This is what happens when the schools are closed for days on end - he had too much time to think about it. Ended up emailing with a dealer at the Ford store and while I was working went down to "look" at what the guy was offering. He came home owning a truck he hadn't even seen yet since the one he wanted was still in Virginia.Saturday morning we went to pick it up and it is everything he wanted. Ford 250 Super Duty.
He is so happy he didn't even complain too much about getting his picture taken with it.

In case you didn't know what he was driving, we called it his school teacher car. We bought it before he started teaching expecting that he would be traveling the county doing some Substitute work before getting a full time position. He ended up getting a job immediately and it is only about 2 miles from the house.
That is the Taurus in front of the new truck. Somewhat different profile.
He is happy. And more snow is coming so he wanted pictures of it clean before we got on the road.
By the way, there won't be any Grand Adventure trips this year like we have done in the last couple of years. Unless you call riding in air conditioned comfort back and forth to the livestock market or running after pig feed an adventure. That will be nice though. Oh - and the old Dodge is still around to do the "dirty work" around the farm.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Anybody Had Enough Yet?

On my way home from work yesterday, the roads kept getting worse and worse. Then I finally made it into the garage and stood there for a minute watching great big wet flakes fall. Again, it was snowing.
This morning I got up and looked out to see a bunch more snow. It has been accumulating for days, but when the paths we use every day are filled in again in the morning - ARGH! That gate and the wire bundle are supposed to be 4 feet tall. They look to be about 20 inches under snow. The dog house is insulated with a thick blanket of snow, but Jake isn't getting near it until the temperature comes up some - and we can open the gate again.At least my frogs are staying warm under the snow pile.
This view is out the kitchen door. We probably need to shovel some of the snow off the deck.
You can kind of see the windmill in the back yard. The concrete Dutch kids are buried under about a foot of snow. I could see the tops of their heads the other day.
Further back in that picture you can see the cows.
They look like they have had enough.
Nothing to do but wait for someone to bring hay and follow their calves around in the snow.
Personally, I had enough. I didn't want to fight with it and stayed home today. Weenie I know. Oh well.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Winter Project - Outdoor

While we are working inside on the basement remodel - one of the neighbors seems to be busy working on his own projects in the yard.

This pile of sawdust is at the base of a pine tree in my backyard.
Here is the culprit. Mr. Woodpecker has been very busy.

Mrs. Woodpecker was watching him when I first went to get the camera, but she must have had some shopping to do - new curtains maybe?
Look how far he is in this hole!
If he keeps that up our summer project might be replacing some fence after this tree falls on it.

Winter Projects - Indoor

This winter we have taken on a huge remodeling project in our basement. There are three parts to it. The first was in November when we installed a heat pump to supplement our wood stove.
That means if the stove goes out if the temp in the house drops below 55 degrees the heat will kick on so that we don't get up or come home from work to a cold house. So far it hasn't run too much since we have also been working on the second part of our remodel. The insulation of the concrete block walls.
We don't have a moisture problem above the floor at all so we glued 1/2 polystyrene to the walls and then attached furring strips over that so that we could put moisture resistant dry wall on the inside of all that.
We have since had to back off on the amount of wood we are used to putting in the fire. Who knew there was that much cold air seeping through those block walls!
Another part of the second level project is to insulate the upper basement windows. When we built the house originally we believed the standard single pane window would be good enough. With this project we decided to make a change and put some glass blocks in those holes. You can see how deep the window ledge is with all the insulation, furring strip, and drywall inside the block.
We put a piece of marble under the blocks to create a level sill for the blocks and then filled the hole to the top. Light still gets in, cold air stays out.
The other addition is a mud room from the basement door. We added a wall and door to seperate the entrance. This will hopefully be a way to keep the dirty boots and wet coat odor in its own place.
After we got all that done a nice coat of "Pale Vista" paint lightened the whole place up. Next is finishing some interior walls so that we can get the ceiling tiles back up and then the floor needs to be figured out so we can get the furniture where it belongs.
We also need to get the trim around the windows so I can put the curtains back up and get the drywall out of the holes. These lower windows are at the perfect height for the winter sun to come right in under the porch and blind a person - if it isn't raining or snowing anyway.
Part three of the remodel will be putting a bathroom in the basement. The one big 7x40 foot laundry utility storage room is getting split into three pieces - laundry/utility room, bathroom, and storage room.
So that is where our winter project stands now. Later!