Monday, September 28, 2015

Summer Projects

Summer is a time for outside projects around these parts, and it was a nice treat to be able to work outside so much this year.  Last year at this time, we were still so busy working on house renos, and it was awfully fun to work on the yard instead, while the sun was shining and there was so snow on the ground. 

Our biggest undertaking this year was to do a bunch of fencing around the yard and shop.  I really wanted 3 rail fencing, simply because it looks so nice.  It's rustic and country and classic and beautiful.  It was, of course, a family project.  The Girls laid out all the fence and gate posts for us, and they measured and marked them, so we knew how far to pound them in.  They got a little creative in their markings, and left us funny little notes on many of the posts.  We spent the day chuckling at their sense of humor....
I really wanted to rework the garden as well this year - to beautify it.  The garden was massive - too big for me to take care of, so I decided to put some square foot gardens in part of the garden, as well as just a regular garden.  I think it's a nice compromise?  I had already planted my garden, so it made it a bit awkward, but next year, I'll plant it differently.  We pulled an arbor from another part of the yard (for now), but Art will eventually build a wooden one, and one of the other gates is an old headboard from an antique iron bed.

I'm super happy with how the garden area turned out, with even an area in the shade for sitting and relaxing...
 While we had the fence post pounder going, Art also decided to put some hitching rails around the shop, to make it easier to tie horses to while we tack up.  We also put those rustic beams around the overhang of the shop this year, to add a bit of rusticity (is that even a word?!) to the boring, metal shop. 
The Girls spent many, many hours creating their own "forts" this summer, and it was fun to watch them make something out of nothing.  There were many trips to "The Junkyard" (aka our scrap metal pile that has yet to be removed) to find materials for their forts, as well as many sticks and pieces of scrap wood from who knows where. 
One of the fun parts of watching them create their forts was seeing how they used "junk", and with their imagination, created really neat spaces. 

Since we moved in, just over a year ago, The Girls have been begging Art to build another swing set for them.  At our last house, we had a fairly sweet swing set/playhouse, and The Girls spent many afternoons playing on them.  After finishing up some other projects, Art decided it was time to get this one done.  He had an auger all booked and ready to go, when he happened on some guys that were doing work on power poles in the area.  After talking with them a bit, they said they'd come and auger the holes for us with their truck.  We were so thankful and blessed that they not only did the holes, but they also placed the poles for us as well.  What took this crew of guys 2 hours would've taken us about 3 days.  We made sure we fed them lots of treats, and everyone went away happy, happy, happy!

We still have to put up the tire swing, but meanwhile, The Girls are enjoying having a swing once again.  The rails are 18 ft. high, so it's quite fun for even the older kids to play on. 

We've had some other projects here and there, one especially exciting one, but I'll leave that for a post of it's own... one day.  Although we had a terrible drought here this year, which left us with terrible crops, it was nice to have many dry days to get work done.  Art was able to take many Friday's off, so that we could work around the farm, and I'm so thankful for that.  It was fun to watch my perennial gardens come up again, and set some plans for the next few years of things I want to change.  We (hopefully) got some of the weeds under control in some of the beds, and I'm always amazed at how quickly those beds go from looking overgrown and nasty to quite beautiful.  I'm blessed to have many, many mature perennials, and these delphiniums are just one example of that.  These flowers grew to be almost 6 ft. high!  They are beautiful!

Now, as fall is arriving, we will start to switch our focus back to finishing up a few outstanding projects inside.  I'm looking forward to some days curled up by the fire, reading a book, instead of working, working, working, outside. 
"...For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under the heaven..."
Ecc. 3:1

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