Walkabout – the East yard

I had done a walkabout yesterday, through our East yard, some of the areas just outside the fenced yard, and explored around the old gravel pit and pond.  I had my phone with me and took plenty of pictures, but then had technical difficulties uploading them to my desktop.  My husband was able to see them fine on his laptop via the USB cable, so the problem had to be with my desktop.  This morning, I tried one thing.  Usually, I have my USB cable attached to one of the front ports of the tower, but my husband had moved it to one of the back ports, so he could access the front ones for something he was doing.  Could that have made the difference?

Turns out, yeah.  That seems to have been the problem.  I was able to upload the pictures without getting the weird error messages I was getting before.

Unfortunately, in my attempts to access and transfer the photos yesterday, some were lost, while others were corrupted or damaged.

So today, I did the walkabout again, this time using the DSLR (Nikon D80) and an 18-55mm lens.

I ended up taking 308 pictures! 😀  And I didn’t even go into the other house in the yard, this time!

Basically, I am documenting the way things are right now, that we will have to deal with as time goes by.  Anything outside the house and immediate yard are lower on the priority list, but they will still need to be dealt with, eventually, so I want to maintain a photographic record of it all.

For now, I will just talk about the East side of our yard – and not even all of that.

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When I first came out, Nasty Crime Boy was there to greet me, but he did NOT like the noise the DSLR made when I took pictures! 😀

The first area I went to was around the other house in the yard.  This house used to be a church rectory, and my dad bought it and moved it when they wanted to build a new one.  It was put into our yard temporarily.  The plan was that it would be moved to one of the other quarter sections of the farm and be a home for whichever of the boys inherited it that section.

That never happened.

I’ll post about the house itself, another time.

This is next to it.

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When my parents’ freezer died, they gave one of my siblings the money to buy a new one, which we are currently using.  The old one, for some reason, got dumped in the yard.  They took the door off, so nothing could get trapped in it, but that’s it.

I hadn’t realized that even the baskets were in there until I came over to take pictures.

I could do posts of nothing but large household appliances, abandoned in strange places, and have no shortage of material.  Especially washers and driers.  It’s amazing.

Then I went around the back of the building.

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That largish black pipe you see?  It’s placed through a hole in a partially boarded up window.  That means it was deliberately placed there.  I find myself wondering if there is something under the house that is being propped up.

This house had had a full basement in it.  Now, the areas with the bricks are what used to be the top of the basement walls, and there is basically a crawl space underneath.

Then there’s this.

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A toilet.  Just sitting there.

Another rain barrel.  I don’t know what the 6 sided plastic thing is.  A wire shelf.

Just.  There.

Why?

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This is some sort of mini garden, near the fire pit.  I can see no rhyme or reason to it being there, and can’t figure out what’s in it – that will have to wait until things start to grow.  It needs to go.  Seeing what’s there will help me decide whether it’ll just be torn up, or if there’s anything in it worth transplanting.

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The above picture is of what is directly North of the mystery planting.  There used to be a playhouse here, built by my oldest brother.  It was basically a shell of a building, with a door and windows in the front.  I was too young to remember it being built, but as a child, I helped my late brother, who was just a few years older than me, frame out bunk beds inside it, and we used old couch cushions as the mattresses.  In the summer, I would sometimes sleep in there, with a tiny kerosene lamp for light.  It was glorious.

I don’t know what happened to the playhouse.  For a while, one of my brothers had some bee hives here.  Now, there’s nothing.  I am thinking this is where we will start a wood pile from what we’re clearing out of the garden now, and what we’ll be clearing out of the trees around the yard.  I am looking forward to when we can have the fire pit going in the summer, and have some wiener roasts!

This is the fire pit that’s there now.

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Yeah.

Believe it or not, there is a metal ring in there.

It’s not where the fire pit was originally.  That was about where I was standing to take the picture.  It was made of loosely stacked bricks, on top of an old tree stump that had been cut to ground level.  I only discovered the tree stump when I took it upon myself to “rebuild” the fire pit, because the walls were being knocked out of place.

One thing I noticed that you can see in some of the photos, is that this area now seems to be mostly moss!  As I was the one who took on the chore of lawn mowing, I know there was no moss at all in there when I was living here.  I don’t know when the moss started taking over, but this is not a sign of a healthy lawn!

I am thinking we should move the fire pit back to where it was, and farther away from those trees in the background.

We will first have to trim away the a dead branch overhanging it, from one of the maples in the area.  There are a lot of dead branches that will need to be dealt with.

Eventually, I want to build a cinder block cooking pit in the area, but that’s a few years into the future.

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This old log cabin is near the fire pit area.  (note the amount moss in the foreground!  That used to be all grass) From what I’ve been told, the family that owned this area before my family bought it – the ones who built the original log portion of the house we’re living in now – had built this and lived in it.

I am hoping we can salvage it.  The one side wall has logs that are sagging in the middle, which may be a problem, but the rest of the walls seem sound.  The roof is almost completely collapsed, and it’s filled with junk – including large household appliances, of course.  At some point, I want to hire someone to empty it, including the remains of the roof, and haul it all away.  Then we can see what can be done with the remains.

There is one thing about it that has me wondering.

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See that tree at the corner?

When I was growing up here, there was a gooseberry bush growing there.  I used to love picking and eating the berries right off the bush.  I don’t know that anything else was ever done with the berries.  Which might have something to do with why, years after I moved away, I came back to discover it was gone. In its place were a couple of spruce trees.

Now, the spruces are gone, and there is this tree.

I don’t know if it was planted, or if it seeded itself, but it’s going to have to go, along with the other trees that are growing too close to the building.

I am seeing this all over the place; trees were allowed to grow right next to buildings.  No one bothered to cut them away.  Did no one consider how much damage they can do to buildings?  Did they not think of it?  Or did they just not care?

So much of what I’m finding around here smacks of “no one cared.”  I’m not talking about things that were left as they were, as my parents aged and weren’t able to take care of things themselves, either.  It’s really quite disheartening.

Well, that’s part of our East yard.  I’m expecting that, this year, we’ll be able to do some clean up and improvements in this area.  At least the smaller stuff.  The big stuff will have to wait, as they will require hiring people, and fixing up the main house is the financial priority.  Still, we should be able to get the East yard to the point that we can use it and enjoy evenings around the fire.

Well.  Maybe.  That will depend on how bad the mosquitoes are this year!

The Re-Farmer

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