Sunday, October 25, 2009

Bad Moon and Raised Beds

Bad things tend to come in clumps. Last night steam from something I was cooking burned two of my fingers, and I found a large and spreading water stain on the downstairs bathroom wall. It did rain all day yesterday, and according to the weather folks, I got about 3-1/2 inches. Le Lac Homestead is back. I'm keeping a good attitude, but me and my numb fingers and hurting cat and water-stained bathroom are heartily ready to wish this bad month goodbye.

What I really want to talk about is the raised beds. No, they're not done yet, silly! Today's milestone is that I finally have everything I need to put them together. I got the corners from Lee Valley. They're designed for 1x8 wood and I have 2x8 wood, so I'll have to chamfer each piece. I got stakes to keep the bed from shifting, and a big mucking whammer to put the stakes in. (It still seems that for every project I do, I have to buy tools!) The thing that gives me pause right now is this.... the level. I've read that the beds need to be moderately level. Makes sense, but the yard is not moderately level. I'll have to use the shovel - at least I have one of those!

Even after I put the things together, I bet I'll be posting as I try to decide what the heck to put inside the beds (gravel, dirt, manure, ... what)! That set of decisions is likely still a few weeks off.

Today is supposed to be nice, and I was going to take a whack (pun intended) at putting the beds together. Unfortunately I need to find the source of that water before stuff starts freezing, so I'll be inside tearing out parts of some walls. I have a suspicion that dates back to when the plumber replaced my water tank pressure valve with a much higher pressure valve in January. Good for water pressure, potentially bad for old pipes. There's about 100% chance I'll have to call someone in, but I'm hoping at least to find the water source myself. I give up on October. Come on November, you can't get here soon enough!


  1. When it rains, it pours.

    Pun intended. :)

    I know it's small consolation, but at least this is happening (the water in the wall) on a Sunday and not on a weekday when you'd have to leave the house and not be able to tend to it! But, yes, that is SMALL consolation.

    Lee Valley . . . we LOVE Lee Valley!!! Quality, quality, quality!!

    And, your fingers: do you have any aloe (bottled) or an aloe plant? That would help.

    But, my advice for the day? If things continue going badly, run enough water into buckets for using today, turn the water OFF, rent a movie, and BAG IT for the day! :)

  2. Jordan..
    I walked around my lake today with my 3Day partner and her dog and I told her I was throwing her in the car someday for a road trip. She's not real handy, but she could play with the dogs while I got out the duck tape and save the day (at least that's what happens in my head)!! Sorry, I'm pretty good with tools, but I stop right before plumbing. I have replaced ceiling lights before, but I had some trouble when I replaced the bathroom faucets getting them to seal up tight and stop dripping, so I don't think I'm the one to help with the leak...although I have ripped out lots on drywall and lathe and plaster in my day! I have an oven kiss on my thumb from last Monday, and I steamed my hand several times yesterday on the grape juice project at my mom's... she kept being where I wanted to be at the stove and reaching didn't work out for me! Nothing that left marks there. It must have been in the air.
    The good part about leveling the raised beds, is you only have to have the edge of the frame level. What's under the dirt won't matter. I chopped up leaves with the mower and put in one bed in the fall before I started. I think I put several layers of newspaper under it to help kill the grass. The other one had a bag of shredded paper from work. I was on my way to the dumpster. I knew what it all was and I figured it would go OK under the dirt.And I put in the dirt when I got it. I'd like to get some more composted manure in before winter, but time will tell. The pickup being home is not frequent enough to plan on. But it's a thought!!

  3. It's funny - I noticed that both of the dogs managed to hurt themselves in the last few days too, and both are limping. The only live thing that's feeling tip top in this house is Pancho (knock on wood). It does pour!

    Karen Sue - I've been thinking about what could be fixed here with duct tape, and there's not much. BUT - I do have some outside things that could benefit from extra hands - build the raised beds, moving some wood. AND, I could get plans and material, and we could build a chicken coop! That means we do it before snow falls. If it were after, I'd have to break some inside things, so we could fix them!