Farmhouse Fling

Can you go home again?

Oh. My. August 28, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — diskam @ 2:59 pm

What’s holding up your kitchen floor?  Steel beams?  A slab?  The kitchen ceiling of the apartment downstairs?  Plain old 2x4s?  How lucky you are.  When we first started talking about moving to this house, my younger brother mentioned the logs in the basement.  I assumed he was confused, and completely blew him off.

Then my older brother mentioned that the teenager that worked for him this summer called the basement ‘A horror movie waiting to happen.’  I really hoped he was confused, but I was starting to get nervous.

The basement is scary.  I knew that.  When I was little, my older brother told me NOT to go down there.  Since he had never shown any particular concern for my health before, and in fact was known to torture me when any opportunity presented itself, I decided to take him seriously.  So, I never went downstairs while my grandparents lived here.  However, I finally braved the truly frightening basement stairs today to look at the underside of our kitchen floor.  It’s a little difficult to believe:

 

That’s one of the, to the best of anyone’s knowledge, 170 year old logs holding up my kitchen floor.  And yes, that’s the 170 year old bark still on it.

I started doing the math today.  The old part of this house was built sometime between 1829 and 1835.  The oldest building in the county is a log cabin built in 1829, and it was originally located just a mile or so from this house.  I knew that part of this house was from the same time frame, I just somehow always managed to skip over the ‘log cabin’ part. 

For reference, Laura Ingells Wilder of ‘Little House on the Prairie’ was born in 1867.  That’s 30+ years AFTER this house was built.

Oh. My.

Ignore the cobwebs, they’re not the scary part.

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First Day of School August 20, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — diskam @ 4:39 pm

School has started.  The house seemed absolutely empty this afternoon.  And quiet.  I was completely confused by the quiet.  Thing Two generally starts narrating when she wakes up in the morning, “Now Mommy’s fixing my cereal.  Mommy!  Do you remember when you were fixing my cereal?  Now Mommy’s putting my cereal on the table.  Mommy!  Do you remember getting my cereal for me, and then putting it on the table?”  I sometimes feel like I’m stuck in some sort of documentary.

We went to a school open house on Monday.  I was absolutely astounding by the number of people I knew.  Why this should suprise me, I don’t know.  It’s not like I moved 4000 miles away and then found out that more than 1/4 of Thing One’s class are children of people I went to school with. 

Thing One started yesterday.  He was a little worried about the new school, but he seems to be settling in fine.  I’ve been a little stressed about being at the end of the lane in time to meet the bus.  Poor kid ends up running because I’m afraid I hear it coming down the road.  Then it ends up being a bicycle or something else that really shouldn’t be confused with a bus.

Thing Two started today.  I can’t believe she’s in Kindergarten.  It actually feels like she should be in junior high.  I asked her if she was scared about starting school.  She thought for a minute and said, “More apprehensive than scared Mommy.”  Jeesh.  I think apprehensive was a college vocab word for me.

I don’t think she’ll ever look back.

 

Little Church on the Prairie August 12, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — diskam @ 7:35 pm

The view from our front porch is of this little church.  It’s a bit embarrassing to admit that I’m not sure if it’s still a church.  I have no earthly idea what denomination it is (or was) or if the congregation ever even reached double digits. 

What I DO know is that it used to be a one room schoolhouse.  My grandmother taught there for 9 years, retiring just before my father was born.  My father attended kindergarten and first grade there, before school consolidation, and the advent of the bus ride to town.  My mother went to a one room school quite a few miles away, but in the same consolidation she went to town school as well. 

I realized just last week that Grandma didn’t live at this house when she taught there, she and Grandpa lived a mile or so further up the road.  I bet it was an unbelievable pain in the middle of winter to get to school.  I’m sure the roads wouldn’t have been cleared, although I tend to doubt she drove to school anyway.  Then to get there and have to start the heater and wait in the bitter cold for the place to heat up.  Yikes.

 

The stars are out August 10, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — diskam @ 10:29 pm

Tomorrow night I’m having a meteor shower party.  The height of activity is supposed to be around 1:30 am or so, and I doubt very very much if any of us make it that long.  It’s also supposed to be cloudy.  If it’s not cloudy, the moon may be too bright.  Apart from that, we ought to have a lovely, successful viewing.

I thought I’d go out tonight and play with camera settings.  I’ve seen some really awesome pictures from previous years, and thought it would be fun to try it out.  As soon as I stepped out on the porch, I saw a meteor shoot by.  It was unfortunately the only one I saw, and of course I didn’t get any shots of it.  Still, how cool is that?

I don’t have a cable release for the camera, and I was trying to be so careful not to jiggle the camera too much.  I did eventually realize that I was actually holding my breath and tiptoeing.  Apparently it’s important to sneak up on the camera in order to minimize movement.

 

Peace August 7, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — diskam @ 8:49 am

This is the view from my back step.  It’s a lot nicer than the view from the back step of the old house, which included an upclose and personal look at the neighbor’s two story garage. 

This view relaxes me.  Five minutes of sitting on the step, and the stress of moving starts to pass.  I forget about the fact that Pete and Thing 1 are gone for 2 1/2 weeks and will get home one day before school starts.  I forget that I haven’t slept in a real bed in over 2 weeks.  I forget that I don’t know where my shoes, band aids or favorite pans have ended up.  I start to feel like, maybe, someday, our old house will be ready to sell.

Peace.

 

Please park in the east lot. August 4, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — diskam @ 10:52 pm

As you exit your vehicle, please make a note of your aisle number so you can find your car at the end of another fun filled day at the Pleasant Hill Amusement Park.

Last Monday we had people pulling out the back step and adjusting the underlying cistern in preperation for repouring the new larger step.  In addition, my aunt and cousin and cousin’s daughter came to help paint the master bedroom.  My mother was unpacking boxes and putting away books, books and more books.  My dad and brother were also around, emptying the grain bins before this year’s harvest.  We also had various people dropping in throughout the day to check on everyone’s progress.

At one point we had 10 cars (and pickups), 2 grain trucks, 2 tractors, a flatbed trailer, and that cute little front loader.  I think I’m related to all but one vistor/worker.  Families come in handy, don’t they?

 

Cleaning up the floor August 3, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — diskam @ 7:04 pm

Do you even want to know how long it took me to figure out that instead of holding the hammer like this:

I could hold it like this:

and not gouge the walls/go quietly crazy trying to pull out the nails?  I think I might not be a natural born DIY.