The New Lawn: Part 3 – Earthworks Continued…

Posted in Animals, Food and Drink, House, Plants and Gardens, Rants And Rambles on August 30th, 2011 by Coffee

It’s been all go here today! Plasterer and painter, as well as the wardrobe guys installing a straight wardrobe, along with the continued driveway and lawn works. My main contribution to things was to keep the cups of tea flowing and to stir the simmering Pinto beans. (The beans were for us for tea, nothing to do with all the troops). And to keep the kitties settled. As much as I could with so much going on. They found it all a bit much and spent most of the day sitting on chairs under the dining table.

But stage one of the driveway project was completed about 3:30pm. The whole drive had been dug out, and all the piles of dirt transported to the “lawn”, which looked like it had been visited by some sort of giant mole or something!

Then the hideous eyesore of the back area got a quick clean-up, and is now looking almost flat and quite presentable. I need to get out and do some shovel work tomorrow to clean up the bits close to the house, but I’m quite happy to do that small chore when I’ve seen how fast all the other stuff gets carted around and evened out. The thought of trying to do that with shovel and wheelbarrow isn’t a good one!

By 6pm a large number of molehills had been flattened out and spread around, and a level area was appearing in the courtyard area. It’s made a huge difference already not to have the ground sloping away from the house.

Assuming it doesn’t rain tomorrow I wonder what progress will be made then!

The New Lawn: Part 2 – Earthworks

Posted in Plants and Gardens on August 29th, 2011 by Coffee

The creeping brownness seemed to have reached an appropriate level so the lawn man was back this afternoon to start the process of levelling out the lawn area around the house. To get enough soil he’s also digging us out a nice driveway. And all the huge piles of gravel around the place can then be inserted into the driveway hole, and then hopefully we can stop slipping and sliding along the drive on a rainy day! And we won’t have to stare at ugly piles of gravel any more. I love it when a plan comes together! (fingers crossed).

So as of now we have about a dozen or so large mounds of dirt piled up all over the place, looking like we’ve been visited by a giant mole or something. And that’s only half the drive dug, so there’ll be a few more yet. Then the fun bit of trying to spread it all and get a decent level. Good job we’ve called in an expert! Or we hope he is. I guess we’ll find out!

A creeping brownness…

Posted in House on August 24th, 2011 by Coffee

A creeping brownness seems to be afflicting us. First all the lawn started turning brown – a good thing as it’s been sprayed and should be doing that! Then the “pasture” turned a bit brown here and there where having 3 days of snow crushing it was obviously just a bit too much for it. And now our deck has started to turn brown.

Unfortunately this isn’t happening naturally. There’s a bit of outdoor work involved, but as the weather has been so stunning we don’t care! We’ve started with the smallest bit to see if we really do like the colour. It seems to be fine so far. Otherwise we’ll have to work out just what you do with (almost) 10L of deck stain. But unless the colour looks horrible overnight, with the good weather scheduled to continue we’ll hopefully make a bit more of a dint in the pail tomorrow.

“Wildflower” of the month – August

Posted in Plants and Gardens on August 24th, 2011 by Coffee

Whenever we’ve been out wandering the messy grass that makes up our plot over the last year or so we’ve seen various flowers come and go between the grass. Some of you might very well call some of them weeds, and I’ve got nothing to argue against that! Although we seem to have pretty much got on top of the “things that aren’t lamb’s ears”, at least for now.

At the moment we have these little blue things dotted through, mainly in the shorter grass areas. Or maybe it’s just easier to see them there!

I have no idea what they are, or an even an easy way to find out. So if you do, let me know!

Can’t remember what was around in September, but I’m sure you’re now looking forward to finding out just as much as I am! Stay tuned!

Quite a while ago…

Posted in Animals, Rants And Rambles on August 23rd, 2011 by Coffee

…we lost count of how many mice Pinot had caught. I think we’re averaging well over one a day now. But luckily none of them have made it inside. Yet!

Notice I said “Pinot had caught”. I think the only one that Fidget has managed to score for himself was the one that Bec saw in the short grass and called him over and pointed him right at it! And then she felt bad for a bit.

Not that he has any problem stealing them off Pinot to play with. Which seems to be OK ish. She seems to enjoy the hunt, while he just wants to be friends with them and play all afternoon. Although there does seem to be a bit of good natured growling from the one that currently “controls” the mouse.

His favourite game seems to be taking them to the sole tree in the middle of the “lawn” and chasing it around and around the pot it’s in, changing direction now and then, just like kids do. It’s really fun to watch. He can go for hours! At least as long as the poor mouse lasts. Then he looks so sad when the poor mouse can’t play any more. And then he tries half heartedly tossing it around to see if it’ll play any more. But of course it doesn’t.

And then it’s over to me to add it to the stack of used playthings. That stack is getting pretty big now! Three on the shovel is the record so far. They are pretty cute though. Although not quite so cute with rigor mortis and covered in kitty slobber!

Snowmen were sooo like 3 weeks ago!

Posted in Rants And Rambles on August 22nd, 2011 by Coffee

Yes, we did indeed get more snow last week. More snow than the first dump a few weeks ago by quite a few centimetres! But we were bored of snowmen, so we had to think of something else to build.

Several changes of artistic direction later, and narrowly steering clear of the usual giant phallus (not my idea, I’ll have you know!) we decided on a 7 foot high rocket.

Unfortunately all the photos I have of it don’t do it anything like justice. Taking a picture of a white thing against a white background with an almost white sky proved almost impossible, so you get what you get. Sorry!

And now, a few days later, we’ve got beautiful sunny days in the mid teens (Celsius). Although we did find one little spot of snow down by the river today. It must have really drifted there!

The New Lawn: Part 1

Posted in Plants and Gardens on August 9th, 2011 by Coffee

Somewhere in that glare and spray there’s a nice man on a little tractor spraying all the rubbish that’s currently growing around the house. Once that’s all died off he’s going to come back and with a bit of pushing and pulling flatten out a bit of space and try to get us a decent lawn for summer.

We decided it would just take way, way too long with our knapsack sprayer, wheelbarrow, and shovel. Some things are better left to the experts.

More Construction

Posted in Animals, Plants and Gardens on August 5th, 2011 by Coffee

It’s been pretty quiet around here really. Nothing too exciting to report for the last few days except a few onion seeds in seed trays popping up. Not really worth an entry, that!

But today saw the construction of… A door!

Yes, that’s right. All the timber that we had lying around to make a chicken run went on a door for a, um, chicken run! Which we don’t, as yet, have. But at least when we do get one we’ll have a door for it!

After hearing some stories from the local neighbourhood about dogs and chickens, and given we’ve had a few visits from roaming dogs I thought it was a good idea that we have a fairly high and strong run to protect the birds when we finally get them.

And it’s quite a substantial door that should do the job. 2 layers of wood sandwiching the mesh and everything.

Worked out quite well in the end. Pretty happy with the day’s efforts. Now we just need some pretty substantial hinges for it, and of course the poles to hang it on.