Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Like Waves Washing the Shore

I've got things to tell you.  Projects that are advancing.  Chicken news, even.  The wiring in the workshop is underway (three cheers for lights!), the stone pathway from the back yard is looking good (five cheers for getting our feet out of the mud!), a hen is sitting on a nest of eggs, and the rest of the garden has chicken proof fencing now.  There's nothing stopping me from planting my store of seeds.  So many good things!  But, one of the most exciting things for me, at least on sunny days, is our new clothes line.

Having a sturdy clothes line that doesn't wobble in our intense wind is so much fun that I find myself sitting in the shade watching the clothes wave as they dry.  It's relaxing, like watching the waves wash the shore at the beach.  Plus, since I'm technically doing laundry, I deserve a tasty beverage while I work.  Whew, it's a rough life, right? 

To build the clothes line, we scavenged up some long landscaping poles and some short pressure treated square posts from our collection of building supply cast-offs, and Brandon showed me how to make lap joints.  He marked the square post where he wanted the pole to fit, and made a serious of cuts with the skill saw.  

These cuts went about half way into the piece of wood.  

Then he took a hammer and tapped them in several directions, which made them loose.  

A solid whack on the side, and they easily came flying away, leaving a nice square hole.  Aha...I wondered how he was going to do that!  What a neat trick.

He had to use a chisel to smooth some of the rough bits, but then the other pole slid easily into place. 

He cut some pieces at angles, to support the top, and wha-la, a clothes line is born!  

We can't do any project without making mud, so of course we had to dig some holes and put concrete around the base of the poles. 

Instead of mixing the concrete in a wheel barrow and pouring it in the hole, instead we put the dry concrete mix in the hole and then added water.  By using a stick we were able to mix the concrete in place.  

Before the poles had the rope, I thought they looked interesting, like sculptural symbols, or totems.  

But once I hung a basket of petunias and added clothes pins and colorful towels, the clothes line looks less like sculpture, and more like a clothes line.   I think I have less feet of clothes line length with this system, versus the collapsible umbrella type that I had before, but since those couldn't stand up to our strong winds and I found my clothes laying on the ground more than once, I'm happy to be only able to hang a few loads at a time if that means they will stay standing.  

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