Hey Diddle Diddle

Yesterday we set to work and had in mind to get the lawn mowed and wall work done.  So of course before we even left for the mountain I bent over to turn on the water spigot to water the geese and


I threw out my lower back. 

I didn’t let it stop me going, but it sure limited my work.

Every week it is something new up there, but the surprises that help us to continue, and not become too discouraged, are awesome!   So while Bob continued on demo and reconstruction, I busied myself with cleaning out the old smoke house.  In recent history it had been used as a shed and was mostly empty after the Octogenarian’s estate sale, but there remained tons of old junk,

plastic bags, moth balls, old chemicals, baling wire, string, cracked and brittle extension cords, old antennas from two mystery cars, pine cones, mouse eaten black walnut shells, screws, nails, old silk flowers, rusty saw blades, spider webs, and of course the ubiquitous mud dauber nests.

A nice consolation prize was finding a primitive, hand crafted bench, and some ancient iron shelf supports that will look great when cleaned and repainted for the kitchen.

I apologize for not having pictures for you, but I couldn’t carry the camera and lean on the broom for support at the same time.  Rest assured you will see these items when they have been spruced up and placed where I need them!

However, at the end of the day I did find you these by using my tripod to support the camera, and on the trail I used my trekking poles to support myself!  HINT – if you find yourself on poles for support, well, in a pinch you can use one of the poles as a monopod and balance your camera on it.  It isn’t as sturdy as using the tripod, but it works well enough.  😀

UPDATE!  The fencing in question is called “Ring Lock” fencing and is apparently quite dangerous to wild animals and livestock.  Mostly in Australia, and mostly to Kangaroos!  Animals attempting to jump over it get their feet stuck in the wires.  Their feet go through and as momentum takes them over their feet cause the lower wire to the whip over the top wire and this captures their feet.  Very sad!  Glad I will be removing any of it that still remains.  I like the look of the wire fence, but imagine it put to better use as some Objet d’art.    Thank you Pam and Deb for getting me on the right track to solving this mystery fencing!  😉


Chimaphila maculata – aka:  Spotted Wintergreen, Pipsissewa, Striped Wintergreen, Striped Prince’s Pine, Striped Prince’s Plume, Dragon’s Tongue.  Dragon’s Tongue is my favorite of its names and it produces the prettiest petite flowers too!  Want to see them? Then look HERE!

Smoke House –  When the Octogenarian’s husband was growing up on the Mountain, they raised pigs.  To keep pig healthy for eating you had to butcher it in winter and smoke the meat to last you through the year.  The smoke house works on beef, venison, or fish too!  Want to know more?  Look HERE!

Construction notes on the Mountain Farmlet – I promised you a bit of history on cabin building, but now feel it will be more interesting if you wait for me to take more pictures of the cabin’s structure.

I know this is a big tease, and I am sorry, but I think you will be as excited as we are when you can see the photos along with a good explanation of what you are looking at.  Don’t you agree?

50 thoughts on “Hey Diddle Diddle

  1. Victoria says:

    Sorry to hear about your back wrench Lynda. Try not to use it at all for a couple of weeks otherwise you could make it worse carrying heavy weights or bending etc.

    I hope you recover quickly.

    I imagine your wire is just called ‘barbed wire’. Nowadays it is made galvanised and much stronger than the original agricultural barbed wire used by early settlers.
    Of course you will need a ‘winch’ or something to stretch the wire taunt between the posts.
    Not sure what my brother uses on his small hobby farm, but I imagine he uses some sort of winch (otherwise large animals like kangaroos would be able to knock it down). I have photos of kangaroos squeezing under the lowest wire on my brother’s fences though.

    • Lynda says:

      Thank you, Victoria! I did lay low today and I am feeling so much better. I will behave myself, I promise! No fun to be had with a bad back.

      The fencing I am talking about is not the barbed wire. You can see a good example of it if you look to the center of the picture and just a bit to the left. You will see two wires that cross each other and are held by a little circle of wire in the crossed section.

      Interestingly, when I went looking for this wire I found a lady in Australia who had found a small roll of it and used it for an art project. So this vintage fencing was used here and there!

  2. petspeopleandlife says:

    A “back out of whack” is certainly not good. Hope you are healed soon. Loved the slides. I grew up with smoke houses and in my imagination i can smell the smoke. My Daddy used mesquite wood and it was a bit of a chore to keep the smoke house smoking in just the right way. Loved your slides. All the photos are very nice.

    • Lynda says:

      It for certain is not a good thing, Yvonne. I am feeling better and better but know that that little tightness is a warning to me not to get stupid! 😉

      Mesquite wood is my favorite! The smell of it burning slow is wonderful. We have a smoker and use it often throughout the year. Very small scale and it only takes a few hours to a day to work its magic. However, I imagine that larger cuts must take days to get done. Am I right?

      • petspeopleandlife says:

        Lynda, I don’t remember how long it took for the meat to cure.I just remember it hanging form rafters. The sausage and the hams smelled so good. It seems that it was probably quite a few weeks to smoke. I’m going to google that for the answer.For many years I have not eaten meat except fish and I wish that I did not need to to that but must in order to get enough protein.

        Have you ever made your own jerky using a dehydrator? It makes great raisins, dried figs, persimmons, apples and banana slices, etc All are so tasty. 🙂

        • Lynda says:

          I’m certain it would! I don’t own a dehydrator yet, but it is on my list! 😉 I know that there is a way to make jerky in our little BBQ/Smoker. We haven’t tried it yet though. Meat is too expensive! Maybe we will try it when we are raising our own.

  3. shoreacres says:

    That wire of yours still looks like a form of barbed wire to me. You should send a photo of it to the Barbed Wire Museum in La Cross, Kansas. They claim to have 2100 different wires in their collection.

    It’s just a little west and north of Great Bend. I was going to visit, but it was closed. It was so funny – I must have seen two dozen huge balls of wire at ranch gates. I finally figured out it was decoration. I suppose it’s the ranching equivalent of collecting string. 😉

    Sorry to hear about your back. That sort of thing’s no fun, but as you say, a little rest often does the trick.

    I just know I’ve heard of Pipsissewa. I looked up the etymology and saw that it may come from the Cree for “breaks up into small parts”. That makes sense, since one of its uses was for kidney stones!

    • Lynda says:

      Linda, if you had told me that I would ever be interested in wire fencing, and old barbed wire before this year I would have thought you nuts. However, after finding, or should I say the geese found, those short bits of barbed wire from the 1800s, well, I’m hooked! (No pun intended!) In my picture there is a bit of barbed wire, but the fencing itself has no barbs.

      I found this: http://playingwithmycamera.blogspot.com/2013/04/an-old-page-wire-fence.html

      and her fencing looks exactly like mine! However, looking up “page wire” was sketchy and I was getting tired last night. My friend Pam sent me a link for some fencing that is very similarly constructed, but the tying wires were wound more securely.

      As for the back, I am treating it gingerly, bending only if I can’t avoid it and not doing much of anything. It is so boring being good!

      Pipsissewa. I love a language where a whole concept can be found in a single word! Hebrew is like that and there are probably others as well.

  4. PS Nunn says:

    Hey Lynda, I just got over my bad back! I pulled the trapezius muscle on my right side. Usually I wrench my lower back muscles, so this was new to me. I was carrying things upstairs (using my legs to lift, like they say) and ended up doing this. I thought it had healed after a couple weeks, but then a few weeks later and BAM same pain, same muscle! Cold on the first three days (to reduce swelling) then heat afterward to loosen up the muscle. The cold packs really helped me. The discouraging part: learning that a sore muscle can take up to 6 weeks to heal!! :/

    • Lynda says:

      I know that muscle well, Pam! When you are healed you will want to start some exercises to keep it flexible and happy. After my car wreck, years ago, it was a terrible pain for a very long time, and it still flares up now and again. I’m glad you are feeling better! 😀

      However, this time it is a disk. I think it is rotated and pinching a nerve. I probably need to go to the chiropractor. 😛

      And, HEY! Thank you for the link on the wire! The page was very informative seeing as we are going to be in fence building mode before we move the animals up here. 😀

      • Deb Weyrich-Cody says:

        SO glad you mentioned the Chiro: ) and, if this is a recurrence (been there) ask your DC about some gentle stretches to loosen and help prevent reinjury. Meanwhile, there’s a little memory tool that FirstResponders use for Sprains (joints) & Strains (muscles): RICE
        Rest Ice Compression Elevation. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RICE_(medicine)
        Arnica (ointment on & “beads” in) is awesome for bruising and inflammation.
        I have read more recently that if heat feels better than cold (but ONLY after initial swelling’s been reduced), sometimes that’s what the body prefers for long-term healing.

    • Lynda says:

      Thank you, Julie! BTW, we will be having similar troubles up on the mountain with phones and internet connections. Though we don’t live so far out as you, the technology still suffers because of the hills and trees.

      Lately, we have been having connectivity issues even here! Twice in the past month we have been without internet connection for days, and calling gets a recorded message that our “region is suffering an outage”. I feel your pain. 😦

    • Lynda says:

      Thank you, Joan. I hope my investigations will make it fun for you to read about later. 🙂
      I am being very good with my back… I have no choice. 😉

  5. tootlepedal says:

    I have a walking pole with a nifty thingy at the top that I can screw into the camera and it becomes a monopod. The only drawback is that I find holding the camera on the monopod more trembly than holding it my hands so I don’t use it much.

    As a fellow bad back sufferer, I feel your pain as they say. Find some good exercises and do them religiously.

    • Lynda says:

      It is more wobbly, Tom. I found it helped to lean onto the the support and then hold my breath. Still, not so good and a tripod.

      Yes, I think that is principally the problem I am having. Lack of exercising. I need to get back into it now that I am getting out more. 😉

      Thank you!

    • Lynda says:

      Thank you, Annie! I am feeling better day by day.

      I followed the link from your link, to the video and it made go all teary eyed, but then it would wouldn’t it? What a lovely vet, not charging for the surgery and implant!
      vid is here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-leeds-24856543

      The owner if Tilly is so correct! Geese are the most lovely and devoted animals and only a Goosewoman would know that secret. (Of course there is always an exception to the rule… like Georgie who is auditioning to be Thanksgiving dinner!)

  6. LB says:

    You inspire me … do you know how many would have changed plans after their back went out. Despite the challenges you have battled, you have such strength. Love the photos!!

    • Lynda says:

      Laurie, the back was fine sitting down or standing up… it was the in-between bits that were a killer! Amazingly, after I took my walk with the trekking poles I felt better! However, I then took the kitty’s water dispenser in to clean it and fill it. Apparently, 2.5 gallons of water weighs more than my back was happy with. 😦
      Should’a let Bob carry it back out. 😉

      I’ve been watching you for inspiration too, Laurie! 😀

  7. chatou11 says:

    Hello LYnda, yes I agree and I shall wait for your pictures of your house with explanation.
    Hope you back is feeling better today. Thank you for sharing of these pictures, you have done very well. Colours are beautiful.
    I think when all will be finished you’ll be able to write a novel on the farmlet!

  8. Littlesundog says:

    That spotted wintergreen puts off a lovely flower! I wasn’t familiar with the type of fencing but glad to see someone recognized it! I’m always learning interesting tidbits from you Lynda! I hope today finds your back in better shape. I know you…I won’t have to tell you to rest. You are so great at listening to your body.

    • Lynda says:

      It’s the teacher in me I guess, Lori. I want to know, and when I find out I have to share! 😀
      I almost hate to shatter your impression of me, but you would not have approved of what you saw today… had you been there to see it…

  9. pattisj says:

    Sorry to hear about your back, but glad it didn’t keep you from your trip–and getting into the smokehouse trash-n-treasure! Can’t wait to see your finds all fixed up.

    • Lynda says:

      It is going to be fun fixing them, Patti, but I think I will have to bring them here to our barn to work on them. All the tools are here! I’m not going to be liking to move them all back again, but, Oh well. 😉

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