Friday, July 31, 2009

Firewood update

The guys continue splitting & piling firewood. Each full row is a complete cord of a different type of wood. Some of it has been sold, and it is being organized into these rows prior to being delivered or picked up. And some firewood was already picked up before I took these pictures!

Here are some logs awaiting splitting:
The guys after a day of splitting & stacking.... Somehow they managed to not knock over the woodpiles by climbing on them...

Saturday, July 25, 2009


Almost 2 years ago a little stray orange half-kitten came to us. He was wild and covered in ticks & fleas. He had broken ribs & scars, and was terrified of the wild animals - deer, raccoons, opossums, woodchucks, even... He couldn't meow normally, he only could squeak like a mouse. We fed him dry cat food outside, and he moved himself into our barn. He was afraid of us, too, but eventually he trusted us, and eventually I fell for him. Here he is in early Nov 2007 shortly after we moved him into our house.

I named him Little Jack. Short for Jack-o-Lantern, because we took him in right around Halloween. Jack cleaned up and gained weight, got checked out by the doc, who confirmed he had broken ribs. He tested negative for diseases & got all his shots & got fixed. But he never got his voice back.

Here is Jack this year:

Jack went thru a destructive phase earlier this year:

Jack's fav thing to do is to get harnessed up & take walks with my husband. I don't let Jack go outside without a leash ~ I'm concerned he'll run away & get killed. He's not the smartest cat when it comes to taking care of himself around outside animals, and he still can't meow very well. But he's my Jack.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Splitting Firewood

The guys have been busy splitting firewood. They've been cleaning up the property, cutting up & moving fallen trees, and a friend dropped off some unwanted timber...before they knew it they had some huge log piles.

The piles before splitting:

After splitting & stacking ~ there's 4 different piles of split firewood in this pic (different types of wood):

These are not the final firewood pictures, more will be posted when they're closer to being done! Since I took these pics 2 days ago, they have split more firewood and made more complete rows.

27 Ton hydraulic log splitter ~ the Lifesaver!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Historic Hay Rake

While the guys were clearing out brush, fallen trees & vines beside our house, they came across this historic hay rake! Rakes like these were used to cultivate hay back in the early 1900's.

Here it is sitting upright, with the rakes resting lightly against the ground.

Leaning forward, rakes in the air:

Up-close shot of the rakes:

It appears the brand Champion is printed in the seat.

This property was a historic farm back in the 1700's, 1800's and early 1900's. I can picture this being pulled by horses out in the fields.

Historic landmarks emerge

The guys have continued to clear the old fallen trees, vines, and brush. Here, they uncovered our historic ice house. We knew it was there, it was just covered in fallen trees & vines. It's set in a small hill beside the main house. I'd like to restore the ice house one day & use it to store canned goods and such. It's in my list of grand ideas for this property.

Here is what looks like some sort of historic well ~ it's right beside the ice house. It's about 3 feet round. If you take off the cover there's water down there. The walls are made from metal. The cover is also heavy metal.

This is what it looks like inside:

The interier well looks pretty deep; we aren't able to tell how deep it is. We were told it may be something from the historic days used to produce electricity which was run to the house. We have another historic water well on the property which looks nothing like this.

This house was built in the mid 1800's, and there was a prior house on this property from the 1700's. If you know anything about such things, please let us know! I've researched it, but have found nothing online.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


A few months after we moved into our home last year, a second stray cat came to visit. We had been feeding Jerry, our outside cat, when a shadow snuck up in the evening darkness, ate from Jerry's bowl, and disappeared. A few days later we realized this shadow was sneaking up regularly for dry cat food. Sometimes we wouldn't see her, but we'd see big golden/green eyes watching us from under a bush in the darkness. We named her Shadow.

Shadow was a wild thing, she came & left like the wind. She ate and ran. One day we saw her on our front porch, then at the same time we saw her on the back porch! It was then that we realized we had two Shadows! Once we knew there were two, we were able to tell them apart - one was larger, one was more petite. One was male, the other female. They were both pitch black with a few white hairs on their chest, with big golden/green eyes.

The male Shadow fought like anything with Jerry. Shadow-boy was bigger and Jerry lost many fights. Then, much to Jerry's relief, Shadow-boy started traveling, only coming back for food weekly and then monthly.

Shadow-girl decided to adopt us. She stayed near the front door or in the bushes nearby, but for months we couldn't pet her or get near her. Jerry must have told her not to go near us. She stayed out there all winter long, and it was bitter cold. But my husband worked his magic - he is able to tame all wild animals (except for Jerry)- he just usually just needs to spend some time with them. So soon he had her tame. Well, semi-tame.
I just wanted to get her to a vet to ensure she had her shots & wasn't going to bless us with any kittens any time soon! Plus she needed to get tested for feline diseases.

It was love at first sight for Shadow when she met our inside cat, Jack.

So we moved Shadow-girl inside, got her cleaned up, shots, and she tested clean. Once she came in she never wanted to go back out again. We often open the door for her, but she wont go anywhere near it! She is happy having all the food she wants, playing with her cat toys & with Jack. Jack was very lonely & was happy to get a friend. In return, Shadow assists Jack keeping the house mouse and bug-free.

Sunday, July 12, 2009


When we first moved into our home a year ago, a stray cat showed up outside.
We named him Jerry.

We put food & water out for Jerry, eventually offered for him to come inside, but he declined. He never lets us pet him, he always keeps his distance. He seems to be happy living outside, free to do what he wants. He travels around the yard/property, but usually returns twice a day, for his morning and evening meal. Sometimes he sleeps on the chairs on our front porch at night.
Often we see Jerry hunting the wild mice, birds, woodchucks and wild rabbits - he likes to play tag with the woodchucks; they ignore him. The rabbits are too big for him to actually hunt, but he enjoys pretending. In return for food, Jerry does his best to keep our property rodent-free. He would get rid of all the birds, too, if he had his way.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Monday, July 6, 2009

Attack of the Vines!

Over this past weekend the guys worked diligently clearing the back yard. It was totally overgrown with fallen trees, knocked down fences, and vines. The vines were out of control! They included blackberries, raspberries, wild roses, honeysuckle, grapes, and other unknown varieties. This place hasn't been maintained in many, many years ~ it needed some attention and TLC!

The vines beforehand...

One of the unknown types of vines...

A gate was found along the fence line...

The black vultures watch over the guys as they work, just checking on them, making sure they're still alive!

Trees are down underneath the vines

A pear tree that's way out in our backyard

Look, we can see our house from out back now!

After the work, the men go on a ride...

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Garden update

The garden continues to grow...
The squash like to climb - here's a spaghetti squash that's growing up on the fence.

Tomatos... several of the tomato plants are going crazy producing tomatos, the others, not so much...

We have lots of little ears of corn!