THANKS FOR NOTHING MONTH DIARIES January 12, 2012 7:30 AM
69 F indoors 43 F outdoors
Snow forecast for today but only a slight accumulation
TODAY’S HAPPINESS FACTOR: 5 out of 10
After all of these years the barn artifacts are going to come to life.
Persa Zula, our new “fellow” in the Blue Rock Station Fellowship Program arrived from Wooster just as I was completing chores. She is energetic and eager to make her mark in the sustainable living world and that is quite inspiring to me personally.
First we met with Jay, and then explored the barns to begin to put together the vision we have for the new privy at the parking area. This is no small project since our goal is to make the privy a prototype of the “Nest” we want to build for our new tiny home – for use when we are older and in need of things like a flush toilet and less space.
The plans and materials list have to be developed soon since the plan is to build the privy the last week of May during our annual weeklong straw bale build. Persa has taken on the task of capturing our ideas and then putting together the plans, and materials list along with a time line for the build.
After a long brain storming session Persa and I set off in the dreary rain with the dogs to explore the artifacts in the barns. It’s a good thing the weather was horrible – if it had been sunny like the past few days we might still be dragging things out to get a better look at more of the cool stuff.
When I dismantled barns in 1999 I was dreaming of a day when I might re-construct a giant German bank barn here to create a barn museum. Anything and everything that I thought might tell a story was put into the goat barn storage room (it wasn’t a goat barn in those days though). The re-constructed little horse barn in the West Field is full of barn lumber and other items that are too large for the goat barn storage.
We really enjoyed our time exploring in the barns. As the goats banged on the closed door that separated them from us and the treasures, we pulled down giant wooden harness hooks, a box of 1960’s play-doh molds, a wrought iron headboard for a bed, cast iron shelf supports, boxes of hand-forged nails and containers of hand-whittled pegs (“pins” that held the barns together).
In the West Field Barn there were a variety of windows, barn doors, porch posts, and lots of one and two-inch thick boards made of walnut, oak or poplar wood. There’s so much stuff in there and it has been “organized” it in such a way that it felt like “taking our lives into our own hands” to rummage around the poor barn.
It’s going to be fun to put this project together. I can hardly wait to see Persa’s ideas.
UPDATE ON ANTIQUE OVENS: The Model A Ford picnic oven is my new best friend. Yesterday she baked two dishes of rhubarb custard to perfection. Overnight I plan to bake several sweet potatoes in the oven so I will have them ready for snacking. Jay remarked how he had thought over the years that we should get rid of the oven – I used it for a coffee table on the porch, and he thought it was just in the way.
For now we’re back in business – able to bake with a small amount of effort. I just place the round stone inside of the woodstove and then retrieve it back out with the little hook that fits into the stone for easy carrying. By the time I am ready to put the stone into the baking oven it’s so hot that it starts smoldering the oven glove before I get it into the stove. I think I am going to move the stove into the house – closer to the woodstove before I push my luck with that hot stone.
Amazing how life evolves.
Spaghetti with fresh sauce
Sautéed Green Beans