problem for me

Our brother in law bought his own mill and is having a grand time building stuff with logs off his property. We were offered a log from the island wind storm to use as firewood but my brother in law offered to put it through the mill to see what came out… The next night he arrived at our house with a bunch of fir boards perfect for making trim.

We had to take the trim off the windows in the bedrooms to remove the original paneling in the house. The bathroom window didn’t exist before so it needs finishing. I bought solar blinds for all the bedroom windows two years ago and since then E has climbed over the 8 foot boxes every morning and night to get to his side of the bed.

As with everything around here, you kind of stop noticing things like 8 foot box shaped obstacle courses to the bathroom. You just fix what is urgent and if there is no current crisis, work at the to do list. When my brother in law offered these board lengths…The window trim project jumped to the top of the to do list.

E planed and sanded the boards for our four bedroom windows this week. Then he cut them into the correct lengths and stained them. Today, he will install them and maybe soon hang the blinds and have a clear path to his pillow.

First of the month system stats.

We only received 10 mm of rain in March so we began to pump from our well for a half an hour a day, two weeks ago.

The upper tanks are at 4800 gallons (down 200) and still I have 1000 at the garden. We used 1177 gallons in the house (about 38 per day). We must have harvested 900 gallons from the well. Our days of long hot baths are over and we have moved on to summer habits of quick showers.

Power wise,we are rocking it with 155 KWH collected in the month. The generator is only on occasionally to power tools. I have been able to have the iron on when I quilt, leave the coffee pot plugged in and binge watch net flix at night.

We went to town three times this month.

On the nature channel, the otter are in the the throws of passion. They are very loud at their love making. It concerns me that they are canoodling next to the deck and are perhaps considering a nursery under our studio again..

We had three hummingbirds stay with us all winter. All of their friends and family have now returned for the summer and we seem to get one in the house every afternoon. Unfortunately, Piper seems to be quite talented at catching birds and has caught seven. This week he managed to catch a humming bird on the deck and brought it to me ever so proudly.

There are a lot of things I over look living here. Limited water, construction zones and bedrooms piled high in boxes. But bird killing…… This is a

problem for me

it up there

It has been a gorgeous week working up in the garden. I have probably spent more hours up there in the last ten days than all of the last two summers combined. Filled with optimism that I will have water up there to keep my plants alive this summer, I begin with a cautious sense of hope. When there is no water and everything is dying, I avoid the garden. It can be all too depressing.

First job, was to get the vegie garden beds turned over and weeded. They are ready now. Nothing left to do but plant the vegies and watch them grow. Most plants won’t be going into the ground until the end of May so I am well organized. I can hardly wait to see the practical side of the garden packed with produce or as I like to think of it, next winter’s food.

The pond has come to life and all of the eighteen gold fish are alive and thriving. During the winter they go south and we don’t feed or see them. Even for the last few days only a few would come to the top.. But today was so glorious, even the fish came up to bask in the sun.

I emptied one side of the compost and scattered what was usable on what will be the tomato beds. The rest went back into the bin to “cook” some more. If you are considering using either of these products (3″ peat pots or peat pellets) to start your seeds, I urge you to save your money.

They are not compostable and bind the roots of your seedlings. If you do use them, don’t plant them with your seedlings. Remove them first. These were attached to my tomato roots at the end of the summer four years ago and have been in my compost bin ever since… They have not broken down in the least.

Now that most of the weeding is done, I can get to the really fun part of gardening. Moving plants around. If a plant isn’t performing as it should, I move it a few times and then, if it still frustrates me, I toss it. It’s a small garden and I have no room for any plant who doesn’t pull their weight and give me joy.

Last fall, I was fed up with my Spirea, Rose of Sharon, Beauty Bush and Flowering Current.. They were tall and leggy and drought ravaged. I pruned them within an inch of their lives. I figured it was up to them to survive and thrive.. They are all alive and have fresh buds on them. Time will tell if they get to keep their place in my garden.

Then there was the best part, “decorating” the garden. I putter, and move things around. I brought a dead Arbutus limb in to stand next to the bird feeders. I didn’t think there were enough places for the little birdies to wait in line for their dinner. Then, E built a frame around an old mirror we got from a friend and hung it on the shed. If anyone has any more old mirrors they want rid of .. let me know 🙂

Tomorrow, more weeding and more “decorating”. I do love

it up there.

a new back

As promised, today we can get back to a discussion about off grid living, renovating, gardening, and best of all pictures from the nature channel… No more heart transplant stuff til next year’s anniversary. Onward, to happy healthy days.

We have decided that we aren’t buying anything more to update or renovate this house until everything we have already purchased is installed and used. You know, before it goes rotten, dries up or whatever else happens to unused building supplies when left to their own devices.

To that end, E has decided to use our left over fascia boards for siding on the new addition. It will be blended with the shakes we saved from the front of the original house. It was a perfect day to be working out front, not too hot, no wind.. very pleasant.

There have been a variety of whale sightings in the last week. Normally, the whales tend to hang around on the other side of the channel in front of our house. Yesterday, they were near the reef at the entrance to the cove where we keep our boat. The day before that, they were under my neighbour’s house on the west side of the island.. She thought they were rubbing on the rocks beneath her. This morning they were in front of our house around ten am. Not too close, but I was still able to get a decent group of pictures.

We finished cutting up the big tree yesterday and we got all of the rounds down to the wood pile area ready to be split. Man, they were heavy. At one point we agreed the only way we were going to get them down there was to cut them in half with the chain saw. That still wasn’t enough. We had to cut them into quarters… sigh we are old..

So today I was able to spend the morning turning soil over in the vegetable garden. I’ll try to get one bed (they are big) done a day. During the afternoon, me and Youtube tried to learn how to paper piece a cat for a quilt I am making.. It didn’t go well.. I feel that the women (you know who you are) on the island who know how to paper piece should be somewhere in the nearer vicinity when I am trying to do this.

I was asked yesterday by a friend, if she could bring me anything from Victoria… If I needed anything… All I could think of was maybe

a new back