There be Cows Here!

We had a nice rain today and, when it was down to a drizzle, the girls decided this was a good, safe time to get the fire pit going and burn down the pile of wood we had in it.

Then we had a cook out.  Because, why not?

While we were out, I could hear the sounds of cows mooing.  Not unusual, except that the sounds were much closer.

Like, really close.


This is taken from the gate beside the fire bit.

My mom rents most of the land out to someone, including the other quarter section.  He’s had his cows grazing there for a while, and now they are here.

While we had the fire going, even though it was still kind of raining, I couldn’t help but work on the area near the fire pit, cleaning up the area next to the log cabin that’s got a collapsed roof.  There were a lot of dead branches to clean up, plus saplings to trim away, etc.  More stuff for the fire pit! 🙂

The roof of the cabin is decidedly interesting.


That is a lot of nails.

This would be the remains of one of the trusses.


This board would have had shingles nailed to it.  They were all wooden shingles, most of which seem to be gone, now, leaving their nails behind.  !!


We also had a squirrel go onto the roof, where it seemed to find something to eat among the pieces of fallen roof!

My head just clears that truss piece, as I walked back and forth under it, making my daughters very nervous! 😀

As I was cleaning up along here, grabbing dead branches and dragging them out, the toe of my shoe caught on something under the decaying leaves along the wall, and I almost tripped.  Going back to pick up what I got caught on, I found it was a piece of board.

With nails in it.

Pointing down, thankfully.

I pulled more boards up out of the decayed leaves, also with nails in them, until the girls insisted I stop working in there.

Cleaning up under there is going to have to be a very careful job!

After we had our cook out, I stayed outside to burn more of the wood pile.  While there, I started to hear strange metal noises coming from the barn.

I knew exactly what it was.

I got my younger daughter to tend the fire for me, while I went to check on the cows.


Who, for some reason, decided they needed to graze around this collapsed shed, with all the sheets of metal lying about.  They were walking over the metal, and that’s the sound I was hearing.

They didn’t like me coming over and were already moving away when I took this picture.

The wire in the foreground is an electrified gate.  There are two of them the renter puts up before he brings the cows over, so they don’t go into the house area; this one by the barn, and another closer to where the cows were in top photo.

With the electrified wire there, I went through the barn to get to where the cows where.

I moved things around as best I could but I’d really rather fence this area off until we can get this stuff hauled away and cleaned up.  There’s little I can do about it.  Some of the metal bits and pieces could not be picked up and moved, so I used sheets of tin to cover them as much as I could, then adding whatever I could on top, to prevent the wind from blowing them away.

On the far side, I stepped on something that felt like a potential problem.  It turned out to be part of fence wire that was likely rolled up and left there.  Except it was there for so long, it was now covered in ground and I could not pull it up.  It was completely hidden in the grass, and a definite risk to hooves!  So I covered it with sheets of metal, then dragged a metal headboard out of the pile (I have no clue why anything like that would be there!) and tossed that on top, both to weight it down, and to make it more visible.

I really look forward to when we can start getting rid of piles like this.  It might be a few years before we get to the stuff on this side of the fence, though.

The Re-Farmer

Around outside

A last post about my walkabout in our yard.


The spruce grove next to the house might be what’s preventing us from being able to get more stable internet (with better data plans!), but it sure is beautiful.

This view is from the end of our garden near the road to our driveway.  As you can see, there are quite a lot of downed trees in there.  Quite a few dead trees that we will eventually need to cut down, too.

Well, we’ll have plenty of wood for our fire pit, when the time comes!


In a corner of the yard, near the fire pit, is one of several old log cabins on the property.  The wall facing into the yard has vertical boards for siding.

There used to be a gooseberry bush at the opposite corner.  I used to love picking the juicy, tart green berries and eat them when I was a child.

Years later, I discovered that they were supposed to be eaten after they turned red and soft.  I’d always thought that was when they’d gone bad, because they tasted so bland. 😀

I don’t know what happened to that gooseberry bush.  It’s not there anymore, and other trees are growing near where it was.

This wall here faces what used to be an open area where my late brother had his “bike shop.”  There were all sorts of bike parts and pieces that he would use to cobble bikes together.

Quite a lot of those parts and pieces seem to still be there, rusting away.


I’ve read that this type of corner joining for log buildings is a style mostly unique to our region.

This old shed was used for storage for as long as I can remember.  I don’t know what its original purpose was.


This is part of the inside.  The roof is collapsing on both sides.  The rafters are full of all sorts of things.  I have no idea what that machine is, but it looks like it runs the length of the building.

The stuff jammed into there is amazing.  An old wringer washer.  An electric stove.  What looks like a very, very old washer and drier set.  Pieces of antenna.  Head and foot boards.  Old window frames.  A bike that I think used to be ours.  Tires.

I don’t think anything in there is salvageable.  It all just got shoved in there and forgotten about.

This old log building looks to be in better shape.

That’s a relative statement.

This is actually outside the fenced part of our yard, but is still part of the larger yard that includes the barn and various outbuildings (and cars, trucks, tractors, hay rakes, fuel tanks… ).  Before my father bought the property, this was the “summer kitchen.”  There was a wood stove and the cooking and canning would be done in here in the summer, rather than in the main house, so the house wouldn’t get overheated.  I imagine it reduced the risk of burning the house down, too. :-/

We used it as a chicken coop.  There was a walled in area around two sides of the building for a chicken run, though we would let them out during the day in the summer.

I briefly considered going over to look inside.

I changed my mind.

I just didn’t feel like working my way through the barrier of burs!

We’re back in the yard, next to the house again.

My late brother built this bird house for my mother, and it can be seen from our dining room window.  My mother is a strongly religious person, so he built it in the shape of a church.

It still gets used by birds every year.  I am hoping that we will have a chance to take it down and fix it up this year.  Maybe prune back some of the branches around the post, too.  Once we have a better idea of what’s actually growing there.  It’s in what was one of my mother’s many little flower gardens around the yard, but it seems to be all bushes now.

What I would love to do is have a deck built along this side of the house, with a ramp leading to the end of the house where the current main entry way is, and the direction we need to go to get to the van, so that my husband doesn’t have to fight with the door while trying to get his walker up and down the steps.  Then we’d also be able to start using what is supposed to be the front door.  If that happens, this garden bed will likely need to be taken at least partly out.  Which would not be a bad thing, I am thinking.

The Re-Farmer