Hidden in the weeds by the barn was this cute little doghouse. On Sunday, we dragged it from the brambles and set it near the old locust tree, where Puck likes to sit and gaze into the distance while we work on the house. I thought he might like to lay in the dog house, out of the wind, and look through the open door. Really, I just wanted to see how adorable he would look in an honest to goodness dog house, like a real dog. He was absolutely not going to humor me by pretending to be a real dog, even for a few moments so I could take his picture. And if you can't tell by his laid back ears and tortured expression in the photo above, he was insulted by the mere suggestion, and is posing near the doghouse just so I would take the picture and stop nagging him about it. He made it very clear to me that he knew the doghouse was for an animal, and he was having nothing to do with it.
The inside of the farm house isn't quite fit for animals yet, but it's getting closer! Working on the kitchen floor has been an interesting project, because at some point since the house was built, most of the kitchen floor was replaced. Probably because the termite damage was so bad. The folks who fixed the kitchen floor before, obviously believed in working with minimal materials, and preferred to piece things together using scraps. I appreciate frugality. They also didn't want to take up the kitchen sink and cabinets (I also appreciate half-assedness), so that part of the floor was never replaced and severely slope to the rotten corner of the house. I'm sure it made doing the dishes more interesting as the sink was tilted to one side and could probably only hold so much water or it would slosh out on the downhill side. So, Brandon has been shoring things up and straightening things out as much as possible without taking it all out and staring over, which sometimes seemed like it would be just as hard as working with the mess that was there. But, after screwing down two pieces of the new plywood floor, and taking them back up to work on the floor joists some more, no less than three times, he finally got it just the way we like it - Ah, it's good enough. We do have some standards, after all.
While the kitchen floor repairs were underway, I was busy working on cutting pieces of insulation board to fit between the studs in the walls. You would think this would be pretty straight forward. That the studs would be sixteen inches apart, and that I could cut rectangular strips and stick them in. Easy, right? I wish! This house is so crooked, and has so many strange features, like the diagonal corner braces shown in the picture above, that I have to measure each side of every gap and draw out shapes with diagonals and tapers. Then, with great patience I cut each shape out, realize that it doesn't fit, try to force it in anyway, get frustrated and start hacking at it with a knife until something breaks and I finally get the mangled mess crammed in the wall. Ah, it's good enough.
Joe delivered a bunch of carpet roles that he pulled from an office space he was helping to renovate. We stacked them in the corn crib for now. We have plans for garden expansion and some u-pick berry patches, but before we role them out to kill the grass Joe wants to check that this method meets organic standards. I'm curious too, because if the carpet is leaching toxins from the plastics in the backing, or maybe residual glues, into the soil as it is exposed to the elements I would like to know. In theory, it's only on the grass for long enough to kill the vegetation, and then gets moved to a new spot, so it's not like it stays there indefinitely and decomposes in one place.
We also had a visit from family this weekend, and my nephew, sporting the overalls and rubber boots I gave him for Christmas, broke in his new shovel and rake by helping me fill some holes in the yard. If I could harness the energy of a five year old every work day, we would have this place in top shape in no time!