Saturday, March 27, 2010

Est. 2009

Naturally, I did not get pictures of Black Mountain. Not only did I not take the camera out of the car, but I failed to put the card back in the camera prior to leaving town. Even if I had taken pictures, I would only have gotten about 4 with the camera's memory. Genius.

I took Tuesday off to sit at the hospital while Mom had surgery. She's minus a gallbladder and evidently feeling tons better because she was immediately back in the greenhouse.

In the afternoon I was able to get a lot done around here since it was so pretty. Got in the bees and did some work there - and they are still thriving. Saw plenty of pollen attached to small bee legs and some capped brood so that's a good sign.

Weeded out some flower beds, cleaned out the greenhouse, planted some seeds, etc.

Today was another pretty day, so we had workers out here doing the piers for the porch and Jay worked on digging the electrical line from the house to the box on the garage. Even using a machine and jackhammer, its still not a pretty sight. Nor an easy job trying to dig 2 feet down through the rock bed that we live on.

While Jay struggled with that, I planted another grape vine and worked out in the orchard clearing grass and debris from around my fruit trees in 3 foot circles.

It's difficult to see the vine, but it's there. And clearing around the trees? No easy task.

The same magicians that completed the support piers for the addition, made some for the porch as well. They also included the awesome cornerstone (made of Tennessee pink marble from Candoro Marble) that the Tugwell-Hann's gave us for Christmas.

If we weren't established before, we certainly are now.

Friday, March 19, 2010


Yes, it's almost officially Spring. Tomorrow it will definitely be Spring - and our anniversary. We're taking a day trip to Black Mountain and hopefully I'll have pictures of that next week. Even though that's not why you're here.

And I'm pretty sure it will ONLY be a day trip - not an overnight trip where the kittens might have to stay here and fend for themselves.

In the cabin, Matthew is framing the closet under the stairs and the electricians have been here the past week or so.

That tangley wire mess looks safe.

I took a walk around yesterday (because I still had DAYLIGHT left when I got home from work!) and took just a few photos. I can tell it's Spring by all the signs...

There are somewhat slimy looking critters hiding here and there.

The hollyhocks are coming back.

The willow trees are busting out.

I even just found some nastiness on one of my peach trees that wasn't there in the fall.

I understand it's the signature of a "peach tree borer" and I need to treat it immediately as it could affect the other peaches and possibly the cherries too. A local expert diagnosed it for me.

But I guess the surest and most rewarding sign of Spring, new life, hope, whatever you want to call it, were these guys.

Nothing says "determination" like having to grow your happy self up through a pile of bricks in order to see the sunshine and, from all indication, succeeding!

Monday, March 8, 2010

True Test

As I promised last week, some pictures of the porch...

Those knobby porch posts are from the woods over at Brian & MaryBeth's.

This past week some gentlemen have been out here working on this:

For our friends and family up North and on the East Coast and out on the West Coast, we're not the redneck hillbillies you think we are - that there is INDOOR PLUMMIN, BY GOD. At some point we hope to have toilets and sinks attached to it.

This past Friday Jay brought home a bunch of scaffolding for the guys to work on the chimney. Since we raised the cabin roof higher than it originally was, we have to extend the chimney as well. They got about 8 layers of brick finished and then when they were through, they broke the scaffolding back down and Jay loaded it up Sunday night to take back to the rental place. When he arrived this morning, the rental guy was surprised to see him. Conversation ensued about not in fact, being through, but we'll rent the scaffolding again next weekend so they can do some more work on it. The rental guy at that point informed Jay that scaffolding rental is for 28 days. Who knew? So he hauled it back home and unloaded it again.

This past weekend we FINALLY finished emptying out the Fountain City house. HALLE-FREEKIN-LEUYAH. After spending the last 100 weekends hauling crap out of that place, I can't believe I don't have to make one more trip over there. Well, actually I do - we still need to clean and touch up some paint, but still - completely empty, ready to be put on the market. If anyone is interested in seeing pictures of it, let me know. It's cute and I love it, but holymotherofgod I'm ready to be done with it.

I've always heard that building a house is a true test of a marriage. I'm sure it's in the top 5 but I'm going to have to say that packing up the old house might be a notch or two above building a new one. Particularly when the previous inhabitants are SERIOUS packrats. We took so much stuff to GoodWill and so many bags to the dumpster, it's amazing we have anything left. But OMG! We have so much stuff left! Our storage unit is full to the point where there is only enough room left to open the door. And, of course, yesterday we determined that our summer clothes that are packed away, the ones we'll be needing shortly, may be in the very back of the storage unit. Logistical nightmare.

I was going through boxes and finding old receipts and books of notes, etc, from Playruf. How long do you have to keep a bank statement? And I KNOW Jay came by it honest, because in going through yet another box, I ran across old checkbook registers that belonged to his Grandmother. She died in the 80s.

All of that is not to say that I'm any better - trust me, I have my own fair share of junk I will not let go of. I'm just saying the two of us together - someone should consider a t.v. show.

So with the 10 million trips back and forth, hauling stuff to storage, hauling stuff out here and cramming it in the already full garage, our patience with each other got lost in the shuffle for pretty much most of the weekend. Yelling, throwing things, crying, a possible fractured knuckle (associated with a huge dent in a metal cabinet) - you name it, it happened. But we gone it done and as of today, we're still together. And I had a whole (texting) conversation with my sister today about how freekin grateful I am to be where I am today. Not in South Knoxville, because that doesn't really matter, but with Jay. I've made some crappy decisions in the past, but he is clearly one of the best ones I ever made.

In the midst of everything on Sunday, the mind boggling amount of crap and deciding where to put it, and the physical exhaustion, Jay was standing in the garage, looking around and scratching his head, trying to figure out where to put something, he said to me, "um, do we we have a piece of wood or something I can set this on?"

Did you REALLY just ask me that question?