Tractors are Awesome!


Our back yard is going to be amazing!  Grading and moving dirt, creating the landscape I want, makes me appreciate big boy toys like tractors!!  I guess a tractor can be a big girl toy too!!


My husband is so sweet.  Here he is helping Cheryl move some wood around.  We have so many little projects going on in our back yard.  He is so kind to be helpful to my sister and me.


Round and round I go, round and round and round.  Moving dirt with a little tractor takes time, but for someone who had a bit of the obsessive compulsive personality, evening out the dirt and creating a gentle slope is really fun.  Especially when I get to make a little mountain of dirt and grass to top off the mound of old carpets we drug out of the now dry corral!  The baby goats will love the mountain . . . and so will the kids . . . I mean the children!



The new barn is going up. 

Yesterday evening we worked in the cool of the late part of the day. We had Ryan helping to place the hurricane ties for the rafters.

The last two nights I’ve had dreams where the 6 tons of hay we bought were being rained on! Makes me feel a great sense of urgency to get the haybarn part finished and the hay in it.

We have the floors and corner posts in the for the haybarn structures and the roof will be going on soon.

Another toy for Ryan and me. 


I borrowed a friends tractor and had a great time grading our back half acre.

We smoothed out the pasture area and created a nice slope in the new barn area where we will be building this summer. Also, spent some time smoothing out the old garden to extend our grassy back lawn.

The new barn area will have a solid run of packed gravel base and pea gravel on top to keep the horses feet out of the mud this winter.  We will also have a hay barn included so that we won’t have to drag the hay on dollys through the rain to the barn!

We are building 12 small structures to make our new barn. Each structure is under 200 ft.² and can stand alone.

I drew so many plans before I finally settled on one. The planning is so fun.

I kind of love projects. 

Cee’s Oddball Photo Challenge

Repeating Patterns

Here are some photos I took because I couldn’t resist the repeating patterns of the wood rafters and other fun patterns at the building site of our spiral straw bale cottage.  Someday I want to make this experience into a book showing our mistakes and our successes.

Pretty rafters all lined up.

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We Ain’t Cold, We’re Vikings!

hauling rafters.png

Would I have been out here in the snow if it weren’t for Cheryl?  . . . no.  Ha ha!

Cheryl often says, “I can do it, I’m a Viking!”  Not wanting her out there trying to lift those rafters on her own, which would have been difficult to say the least, I went out and helped her.  After all, I’m a Viking too, right?  I wonder if we do that DNA test, who would be most Viking?  😉

I found working in the snow wasn’t that bad.  Of course, I had on the big fluffy down jacket my dad gave me a few years back when I still lived in Florida.  Glad I have it now!  Also, under my long skirt I had on stretch pants.  Then there are the Ugg type boots I was wearing, a great thrift store find . . . and a scarf to keep my ears warm.  Yeah, we’re tough. We’re Vikings.  We’re well insulated Vikings!

We worked to get the outline of her rooftop done and tarped, so her “tiny house” aka her studio, could be covered from the rain and snow until she can work on it after this new semester.

We worked and worked, then had to go in to rest and get warm.  Then back to work.  We paced ourselves because we just don’t have that much stamina!  We did not get the tiny house along as far as we had hoped, but we are close to the goal.

Today (Sunday) was to be her last day to work on it before school starts for her.  She had been working through her winter break on the structure, even when sick, and today she was really under the weather so we decided to rest.  I was glad we were resting because I was exhausted and I’m not even sick!

Here are some more photos of our working yesterday.

bones without roof.jpg
Before we started the roof bones.
Cheryl attaching things while I hold rafter steady (out of picture).
Looking good.jpg
MMMmmm HHhmmm . . . Looking good!
Working up high.
Yipee!  Done for the day.  Getting dark.
View out the double doors on south west side.

I do love building projects, especially ones like this which will be so beautiful when finished!  I wouldn’t choose to work in this weather, however, Viking or no.