August 19, 2001
Shape of Things to Come
Now that the house has been slowly taking shape, so has the hill in front of the house. Earlier in the summer the hill in front of the house was shaped using a bulldozer. This did a great job of leveling things out, but not good enough for seeding a lawn.
I did try using the rusty, trusty Bobcat to smooth things out, but only being an amateur Bobcat operator I was able to smooth things out a bit. There really is an art to using a Bobcat and as luck would have it, I have a neighbor (Bill) who does landscaping with a Bobcat for a living. So, I hired him and his Bobcat (with a modified bucket) to come out and landscape around the house.
Bill is an artist with his Bobcat. He can flick dirt wherever he wants it and shave down hills like they were butter. It really was fascinating watching him do his thing. I would imagine that after you've been using a Bobcat everyday for a year or more the controls become extensions of your arms and legs.
The next step is to seed the hill sometime in September to green it up and prevent any erosion. Bill's dad who owns the company came out to say "Hi" and meet this weird neighbor who's building a replica of a Kentucky Fried Chicken fast food factory. He owns quite a few acres of bottom land along the Root River and has quite a productive sod business. Our view from the house actually overlooks some of his land, and it's a pleasant view to see fields of green. Bill and his Dad both say the best time to seed a lawn is in the fall. The seeds germinate better in the soil and weeds are less of a problem. Once the seed is planted, next spring should find me knee deep in lush grass. Just what I need more grass to cut!
The weather this last week was great working weather for the most part. It did rain most of the day on Wednesday, but it was a rain that was well received by everyone in the valley. Things have been quite dry, so an all-day, gentle rain was a nice gift from Mother Nature.
Since the weather was cooler, I switched sides and built a wall on the southwest side of the house. This is the second of three consecutive windows that will provide ample winter sun and also provide a great view of the valley from the hill.
Even with a rainy Wednesday, the wall was finished by Thursday morning. This gave me an extra day to spend at home with Jo. It's been a couple of weeks since I've been home and it will be nice to take a couple of days off, even if I'm addicted to building cordwood walls.
|Here's a photo of a hummingbird that I was able to get while standing only a few feet from the feeder at the cabin. As long as you are patient and hold still, they'll be happy to have their picture taken.|