Over the last week, we’ve had the opportunity to see whole new parts of our house — with the digging, the laying of a waterproof membrane, of drainage tiles, pipes and layers of rocks, sand, and soil. It’s been fascinating, much like a city sink hole is fascinating. We don’t often think about, much less get a chance to see, what’s beneath our feet, what holds up our world.
The size of some of the cracks along the foundation was pretty impressive. And given the rains that poured right after the dig, for a short while, we did have a sort of moat.
It’s now all been backfilled and we’ll soon be able to use our back door again.
The big victory of the week is that the coop is closer to done! All of the hideous panelling* is gone, replaced with lovely barn board. These boards came from an old family farm in Eastern Ontario. They were selling huge beams, which we had shipped to us. We then hired someone with a portable saw mill, an elderly someone who had clearly been in the trade since boyhood. We used the cedar board for windbreaks for the cattle for the winter. These are the boards we had left over. The hens seem indifferent to the change, but the easier moves will mean more moves, which they’ll appreciate. Now I just need to upgrade their perches.
(* The panelling, in all fairness, also has its history. Those sheets or panelling were the walls of the basement before we gutted it right before moving in. With a cracked foundation and multiple water infiltration spots, we decided that having a finished basement, complete with carpets, was a health and safety risk we weren’t interested in. With the help of good friends, it was all ripped out and whatever was deemed usable, was stored away in the garage. How fitting that we were ripping the panelling off the coop as the foundation was getting fixed.)
Our first year on the farm, we harvested our potatoes from under snow (and a thick layer of frozen soil, which cost us a fair percentage of the harvest). Ever since, harvesting potatoes before significant snow fall has made me feel particularly on top of things. Démesurément. It was a beautiful day for it today. I got 3 of these burlap sacs full. It may just be enough for the rest of the year. And I found the rest of the pumpkins, playing hide and seek in the wilted squash and corn remains. The green ones, Godiva Pumpkins, which are good for pumpkin seeds, I haven’t planted since 2014 (because it’s quite labour intensive to get all those seeds out, cleaned, and dried, and they tasted a fair bit like silage, which isn’t really a taste I want to work hard for).
Gardens are such ordinary and whimsical places.