I popped out to see if the weather would allow some lawn mowing, and discovered a whole bunch of adorableness, just outside the door!
When I first opened the door, they were next to the water bowls (while mama was inside the kibble house, eating), and all four of them were moving towards me, all in a row. 😀 Then they went around the back of the cats’ house, stopping long enough for me to get a couple of pictures.
There was a mama cat and kittens on the laundry platform steps, and they all started towards the cats, like they were synchronized. 😀 After getting the pictures, I shooed the mama out of the kibble house and they all left.
Once the skunks were gone, the kitties were a lot more relaxed.
Except Sad Face, with his permanent tragic expression, and always looking ready to dash off.
Checking the weather radar, we had our frequent climate bubble in effect. The severe weather system split, with the large portion of it going to the north of us, and a smaller portion to the south. I was able to get some mowing down around the garden area, though it was so hot and sunny, I stopped when I ran out of gas, rather than filling and continuing.
Further south, however, another system went through. My brother’s place got hit with driving rain and hail! Everything is okay, though.
In other things, I called the tree company that cleared our power lines and roof a few years ago. Someone will be coming out over the next few days to give us an estimate. My plan had been to take down dead spruce trees myself, but considering where some of them are in relation to the house, and to each other, it would just be more efficient to hire someone. They can do it all in a day – and with greater safety! When I first called and left a message, I made a point of mentioning that I want to keep the wood for building with. I also mentioned getting things chipped.
With that in mind, before I started on the mowing, I got out the orange marking paint I remember to pick up more of at the hardware store. I then went around and marked the ones closer to the house, as well as the one by the garage. I’d marked as many dead trees as I could get to, last year. The marks have faced, but I could still see them. Last year, I’d counted about 22 or 23 dead spruces, with the possibility of more that were not accessible, in total (I hadn’t bothered marking some of them at the time).
We lost more trees over the winter, though. This time, I marked 22 dead spruce trees, and that was without going around the East side of the spruce grove, and trying to get through some of the underbrush.
That’s a lot of trees that can be used to build more high raised beds! Assuming they are all still solid, and from the looks of it, they are, though a couple of them have been dead and drying long enough, they have split lengthwise.
That spruce grove is going to look really empty once all the dead trees are cut down. Once things are cleared up, the plan it to turn part of the area into a sheltered seating area, with trunks supporting benches and tables. Fruit or berry trees that need more shelter may then be planted, as well as more spruces transplanted into the spruce grove.
Once those dead trees are down, though, we can get back on track for building the cordwood outdoor bathroom, with a composting toilet rather than a pit, that we were looking to do as a practise building. After we no longer need to use the space to access and drag out the dead trees, we can start working on building up a foundation for it. This year’s flooding showed us that, while the space we’d chosen for it didn’t end up underwater, like so many other spots, it did eventually get very muddy. We definitely need to build things up at least a few inches. Though the plan is to make an outdoor bathroom, it will have a solid floor, and the composting toilet will be easily removed, if we ever want to repurpose the building to be just a regular storage shed.
The dead trees we plan to use for building high raised beds had been intended for building the cordwood shed, but garden beds have become more of a priority. I expect we’ll still have plenty of wood that can be used for it, anyhow. Plus we’ll be making bottle bricks to use for light, instead of windows.
This is a project that will take much longer to get done than we originally planned. At least we still have the old outhouse all cleaned up inside and can use that, if we lose our septic again!
Also, if we do the floor right, we won’t have to worry about groundhogs digging dens in the pit, like we found under the outhouse!