Outside my window

The rain came softly the sound of it hitting the roof lulled me, enveloped me in a cocoon of serenity.   Gradually the drops become more intense.  I hear a hush, and then a steady cadence as they land outside my window.  The darkness of the morning’s rain has fooled me, seduced me into complacency, when suddenly there is a rumble in the distance…

Tumbling out of bed I rush to the door, jump into my wellies, and run to let out my chickens and geese.  Along the way I pray not to be struck lightning for coming out so late!

If you have animals you simply cannot sleep in!


After the rain stopped

I saw this through my studio window.



Mountain Farmlet update:  Bob is on vacation this week, the plumbers come tomorrow to install new plumbing and get our water going again!  They will be followed by the roofer sometime near the end of the week.


We are still peeling walls. 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAnd you may want to heed Bob’s visual warning before viewing the rest of yesterdays discovery work

Remember that old-time fire damage I told you about?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWell apparently, the fire was not contained to that one spot!

Anyone out there recognize the strange patterning over the top of the fire damage?  Hint:  it is not mud daubers.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt is the mud tubes from subterranean termites. 

Thankfully long dead.

Between them and the fire damage the wood was severely compromised and had to be removed.  There is yet another layer underneath what you see, and once it is out we will have to reframe this load bearing wall, and while we are at it we will frame in my pass through opening…

So I suppose there is a bright side in all of this.

However, I begin to feel as though Bob will be retired before we ever get to live here…

“The waiting is the hardest part.”

Tom Petty

Curiosity killed the cat.

And satisfaction brought it back.

In the old homestead on the Mountain Farmlet, there was a wall that had a funny bulge.  The bulge was very firm and would not budge.  However, just to the left side there was an odd caving spot that was very movable.

One day while there alone my curiosity got the better of me and I decided to investigate…

It was like peeling an onion. 

Off came the chair rail, then the paneling.  Underneath of the paneling there was scrap wood, foam board, cardboard, chip board, seven layers of ancient wall paper, and some cotton fabric that had been soaked in mastic and applied to a rather large void.  On one side of the void were large 12 and 14 inch planks, and on the other side was tongue and groove wood siding.  The top of the fabric nearest to the ceiling had been opened at some point in the past, and so…

I removed it to reveal this!

What-was-insideIf you do not recognize it, then I will tell you.  It is the northwest corner of the log cabin that was built in 1840.  The odd cut length of the log’s ends are why the wall bulged in this spot.

I was so surprised to find that there was no mold or mildew under all that old paper.  But now what to do about this uneven wall?

It was suggested to me by the Octogenarian’s daughter-in-law that I might put a viewing window here.  I think she may be right.  It will require us to do a bit more revealing,  some brushing and vacuuming, and the hole will have to be framed out and some plexiglass installed as well, but I think it will be fun to leave a portion of the original home open to view.  Don’t you agree?

In other news  we must report that we are at a standstill as to what we can do to the house to repair it.  We have to wait for the foundation man and the plumber to work their magic first.  Then we can call in the electrician to fix the wiring.  It is going to take some time.

So yesterday, with intentions to work in the yard, we arrived with shovels and rakes, work gloves and boots, only to succumb to a mild summer day and a blue sky with big white clouds.


We walked in our woods, then sat on the bench on the front porch to eat our lunch.  We observed a Carolina Wren building a nest in the newspaper slot under our mailbox and watched the butterflies and bumble bees sipping nectar.

Later we walked by the pond


Buddy found a *rat snake near the ravine, and Bob finally got to go exploring!  He makes me smile every time he says:

“It still hasn’t sunk in that this is really ours.” Or, “This is such a beautiful place, I wonder if it is for sale?” 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOh yes, and something is missing in this picture.  Do you remember what it was?

NOTES on Rat Snakes:

Rat snakes (aka: chicken snakes) are really maligned!  I went looking for a picture of one for you to see and everywhere I turned there were rants about them.  You know, they will eat your chickens eggs if they can get into your coop, but hey!  Secure your coop!!!  There is a reason they are also called RAT snakes,  and they can be very helpful in rodent control if you keep animals and feed.

I am not above touching one of these farmyard visitors… when, and if, the need arises!  LOOK HERE

Besides, the last time I saw a “chicken snake” on the farmlet, well, the rooster and my 15 hens were chasing it off the premises!  😉

Visitor--Black Rat Snake

Visitor–Black Rat Snake (Photo credit: cotinis)