Sunday, 19 August 2012

Before and After

I've taken a few pictures around the house to show some of the rooms as they now look as opposed to last year.  In many cases, the change is remarkable!


Before - upstairs bedroom

After - Mike is using this room as his office

Before - upstairs bathroom looking at sink area 


Before - upstairs bathroom looking at shower/toilet area

After - upstairs bathroom looking at sink area

After - upstairs bathroom looking at shower/toilet area

Before - stairway heading upstairs

After - stairway heading upstairs

Before - stairway heading down

After - stairway heading down

I can't find 'before' pictures of my bedroom (it looked just like the other upstairs bedroom) or the hallway in between the two bedrooms, but here is how they look today.




So that shows what the upstairs looks like.  I'll do the downstairs pictures next post.

Just to show that I AM doing some work, here is a picture of the wood that I split for Mike the other day : )


That is one section of the wood shed and I filled about 1/3 of it.  There are four more sections to the wood shed and Mike will take care of those!!



Thursday, 16 August 2012

Update 8/17/2012



Mike put me to work again yesterday, this time splitting wood.  He has a wood splitter, so the work was not that hard.  It's just nice to get outside when it's not raining and get a little exercise!  

The chickens and turkeys have dried out since the rain stopped.  Here are some shots of Heather's Orpington chickens.


The Orpington Rooster


One of five Orpington hens


One day's collection of eggs


I haven't taken any good pictures of the turkeys yet, but will post some later.

Heather has hung some of her stained glass here in the house.

Morning Glories in the window in the upstairs hallway


Love Birds in the window in my bedroom

When we get a really sunny day I will be able to take pictures of the rooms in the house, then I'll post some 'before and after' pictures.

On Tuesday we stopped in to see Simone and her sweet young son Quinn. 




Heather is making pizza for dinner.  Yum!!

Sunday, 12 August 2012

A Sunny Day!

August 13, 2012

The sun did come out for a while on Friday, but it was overcast most of the afternoon.  Mike took advantage of the "dry" weather to cut firewood and I spent part of the afternoon hauling the logs out of the forest and up to the wood shed.  Two hours in I was done in and Mike finished up the job.  Saturday there was actually sunshine and Mike was up early to thin the turkey flock and prepare three birds for freezing. 


Mike's parents came out to collect some firewood and here his dad is watching as Mike finishes plucking the birds.

His mom brought some goodies for the turkeys and the chickens.



It rained all day Sunday so we stayed in and watched the Olympics and Heather and I continued our knitting while Mike worked on installing filters in the water system.

Today it's raining again and very windy.  We're hearing reports of flooding but I was getting stir crazy and talked them into taking a drive into Rangiora so I could get more yarn.  Last year I posted this picture of a dry river bed with poppies growing in it that we had to cross to get to Rangiora.


Mike and Heather have been living here in Eyrewell Forest for two years and have never seen water running in this river bed.  Here is a picture of that river bed today. 



I know this is a short post but I have to go and make dinner!  So I will put this up and promise to post again soon


Sunday, 5 August 2012

Return to New Zealand

I arrived in New Zealand last Tuesday after a very bumpy flight across the Pacific and I'm finally getting settled in.  It's wonderful to see Heather and Mike again and yesterday we had a delicious turkey dinner with Mike's parents Rita and Dave, his god-parents Alf and Margaret, and close friends of his family Margaret and Brian, who happen to live right down the street from us.  

Heather and Mike have moved out of the Wee Mansion and into the new house which is spacious and beautiful.  A few major projects remain - installing the wood flooring, building the wall of shelving for Heather's collection of books, installing an L-shaped island in the kitchen, and tiling the walls around the spa tub in the master bath.  But overall, the house is warm and comfortable.

The baby turkeys I posted about last visit have all grown to adult size over the past 8 months.  At one point earlier this year there were over 40 turkeys free-ranging on the property and they have pretty much destroyed the garden and the plantings that we worked so hard on last year.   But they have also provided many many delicious turkey dinners as well as some income from the sale of a few breeding sets, two hens and one tom in each set.  The stories of turkeys being stupid birds are completely true.  Mike built a turkey hutch for them to roost in, but instead they just hunker down on the ground, up in a tree, or on anything that is above ground level, and sleep for the night.  The weather does not matter to them and they will sleep unprotected in the rain and even in the snow. Tried to load a video of one of the female turkeys talking to her reflection in the window of the front door, but it didn't work.  Will try again later.








Friday, 2 March 2012

Virginia Garden



Well I am starting the gardening process all over again, but this time in Virginia.  And I don't have to spend time helping Heather care for her chickens and turkeys, but I do try to help Pamela, when she needs me, take care of my two grandsons.


Since the soil in Virginia is CLAY, which is as hard as a brick when it is dry, I've decided to make raised garden boxes, similar to what we built in New Zealand.


So off the Home Depot to buy the wood and have it cut.


Here is the wood stacked up by the workshop/studio windows waiting for me to get my act together and build the boxes.


And here is the first finished box, ready to be moved to the garden area.

So after waiting through three days of off and on rain, I finally got into the garden area this morning and was able to level the ground enough to get the boxes into position - just two at this point.  


Two boxes in position on the right and the tomato bed is ready to go on the left, up against the south side of the garage.

The raised boxes are 3' x 6' and 12" deep.  After lining the bottom with mesh to keep weeds out but let water drain through, I dumped in a layer of wood chips to help with drainage, a layer of humus, and then started filling the boxes with top soil.  

Unfortunately it began raining around 3 pm this afternoon and we're supposed to have more rain through the night and all day tomorrow.  I guess more work on the garden will have to wait until next week.


Sunday, 22 January 2012

Happy Birthday Uncle Mike

Daschel and Julian wanted to sing happy birthday to their Uncle Mike, so we did a short video of the event.

video

And they were so impressed with the pants that I wore helping Heather and Mike paint the house, they call them "paint pants", and they each wanted a pair of their own.  Of course I obliged them.  Here is what they look like wearing their paint pants.