Archive for category backyard


Bullets, because it’s been a long day:

– applied for permit to have the shed put in out back; looks like that will be fine
– hung a couple of pictures (long overdue)
– dragged all the old shed up to the driveway and sorted the scrap pile into aluminum and steel
– cleared some undergrowth from around where I plan on having the shed installed
– pulled down some broken branches that were stuck in other branches after that storm a few weeks back
– cleared some brush from the area around where the shed should go
– tried installing a missing storm window in the dining room. Having trouble finding one that’s the right size – moreover, the sash cords are broken on that window and at one point the lower sash slammed down and I lost a piece of 100 year old glass. C’est la vie. Tomorrow I’ll take that whole storm down and try and get something to fit.
– moved a lot of furniture and tools around in the living room because I had one half of Ian Wilson’s band crashing overnight.
– older note but worth mentioning: cleaned several of the downstair’s radiators’ steam valves with vinegar and now have minimal whistling.

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With friends like these…

I should have more people over more regularly. It’s not just the multi-person projects that get done (painting part of one of the exterior walls, for example), something about having other people around gets me more active, to the point that I’ll swap a couple of mismatched cabinet handles in the kitchen (that I’ve been staring at for months) while we’re all standing around and chatting.

Sarah and Mike stopped over today and we did the above plus: mapped out shed dimensions to make sure I’m placing it well; installed a new jack in the basement to replace one that was missing (!); moved all the tree limbs that came down in the storm the other week to the front for city pickup; and I just put some plumbers tape on a valve in the upstairs shower to stop a small drip.

Pictures soon.


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Shed’s dead, baby. Shed’s dead.

Wonder bar, mallet, screwdriver, elbow grease, two hours.

Here’s more of the sequence.

Direct quote:
Me: I’ve got beer and cola in the fridge, you want any?
Sarah: Haven’t had my coffee yet. Let me get through that, *then* I’ll be ready for a beer.

I swear, I did work too. I just also took all the pictures.

And of course, after doing all this, we looked around and decided there’s probably a better place to put a shed. On the bright side, I’ve got scrap metal to sell and a nice little clearing (once I figure out how to get these ginormous timbers up and away) for a garden or a place to sit.

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Small Successes

More camera cleaning. Here are a variety of things I’ve actually done at the house over the last 2+ months.

This was the first fully successful project in the house, actually, which is the only reason I’m bothering with posting it – minor surgery to remove a shard of what may have been the previous doorstop’s screw from the hole in the wall, then sinking the new stop into the barest sliver of good wood next to it.

All I wanted to do was replace the two broken door guides for my shower doors. But the generic ones Home Depot required some… modifications. As in, there used to be another upright portion on the bottom edge there, and there wasn’t a screw hole in the originals. But hey, they both stay in place and guide the doors.

I hung it myself. And it even turns on! Its sister at the other end of the hall is still not up, though, because the wires in the attic might as well be replaced before I attach anything to them.

And now people don’t suffocate while working in the back bedroom.

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The Big Pile of Wood and Other Things

In an effort to both clear stuff off my camera before an upcoming trip and put my various scattered pieces of knowledge about the house in one place, I’m adding a few other categories to the blog – materials and tools, and projects that haven’t been started. Maybe they’ll help me get a better view on what can happen.

This post, of course, doesn’t really cover either. But here are three things that have happened around the house in the last few weeks:

The College is renovating part of Severance (as well as several of the dorms) and Hans and I pulled all of this lumber out of a dumpster. Some pieces have cracks and splits but there’s at least a 6′ run on each stick that’s good, most are 8-10’+, plus two long planks of 2×10 or 2×8 (I don’t remember now). It’s enough lumber to almost create a floor in the old 8’x8′ shed out back, except I’ve decided to take the shed down and get a new one. Most of the quick constructions you’ll see on the blog in the coming weeks are made from these 2x4s – free lumber is a good thing.

Speaking of the shed:

This is most/all of the stuff that was pulled out of there over two days. Some salvageable lumber, some salvageable other things, and then about 20 bags of trash. The bricks on the right came from a decades old attempt to create a floor. Not visible are the 20 or so flagstones salvaged from next to the shed. Thanks to Benny and Molly and Ellen for doing most of the hauling (for pay).

And speaking of Hans:

I just had to get this shot of Hans falling asleep on my couch mid-crossword.

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