Homestead Report

Nice view from their house


I head up to the homestead.  It’s dark now when I go up.  It’s that time of year.  Not so much oil traffic this year so not so many big trucks on the road in the dark.

WEATHER:  It’s still warm during the day but getting colder at night.  In the 40’s.  It’s supposed to be 65 today.  We’ve had our first hard frost.

GARDEN:  I had put cardboard over the beds I cleaned out last week to keep the weed seeds from blowing in or growing.  The wind blew one piece of cardboard off so I stake it down better.  No time like the present on this beautiful gorgeous day to finish the task.  I am trying to start a compost pile but have had very little to put in it.  Now, I have all the tomatos, peppers and turnip tops and squash vines to add to the pile.  This will help my compost because now I have a pile and some weight so when it gets warm it can get all hot inside the pile to start decomposing everything.  It will take a year so hopefully by next Fall I will have some home compost.  I had quite a bounty out of the garden this year.  I can’t wait for Spring.  I will take half of the soil used this year and move it into the beds I didn’t use this year and then add more new soil for new nutrients to each bed so I won’t have to buy all new soil again.


NEW CLOTHESLINE:  I decide to use my new clothesline.  I drag rags home and wash them and bring them back but I have some laundry detergent so I throw them in the sink and give them a wash.  I take them out and hang them up and after they dry they smell so good!

PLAYING WITH FOOD: I have a turkey breast to try out my new smoker.  I get it prepared and put it in the smoker.  It is smoking while I clean up the rest of the garden.  Three hours later, success and yummmm!!

PAINTING:  I have the paint for the stovepipe.  I really need to get this done before I need to use the stove because the pipe has to be very cold when applying the paint.  I had the spray but no way I’m spraying in the house where I have new paint.  Everyone says to just cover everything.  I know there is a paint you can brush on so I’m not chancing  getting black spray on my newly painted ceiling.  I get it out and open all the windows because the can says how toxic it is.  Do not breathe, can kill your sinuses and affect your brain and shut down your whole system.  Ok, not the words on the can but that is what it means.  Wow, this stuff does stink.  It doesn’t take much paint or time or paint the stovepipe.  It says to let it dry for two or three hours and then it won’t be cured until it gets hot.  When it gets hot the first time it may smoke and give off lethal fumes and if possible to cure it outside.  Ye gads!!  Yeah, right, I’m going to tear out the stovepipe and drag it outside to heat it up.  I’m trying to decide whether it would be better to have an ugly pipe or die from making it look good.  I go outside and do the garden cleanup while the paint is drying with all the windows open.

WOOD STOVE:  I have the wood stove all cleaned out (see previous blog about the cool nifty SootEater chimney cleaning tool).  I need to cure the paint on the stovepipe by heating it up so no time like the present to test the wood stove.  I bought some of the firestarters that are pressed wood mixed with wax (I think).  I get some kindling and get that started and throw on a log and hey, I have used my stove for the first time.  I didn’t use it last year because I didn’t know what condition the previous owner had left it in (if like everything else – FILTHY) and was delayed because I didn’t want to get on the roof and clean the chimney.  I have a fan set up in case the fumes and smoke happen while curing the paint.  No smoke, no fumes so that was good but I was ready to suck them out with a fan set up by the window.

ENTERTAINMENT:  It’s Halloween and I have all my chores finished and will get out my candy to give to trick or treaters.  I get about 50 kids.  A few town kids but mostly pick up trucks driving around dumping out kids and following them around until they are finished.  I didn’t get my ghostly figures made I wanted to with the glow in the dark paint.  Darn, that would have been fun.  I do manage to scare a couple of little ones with my giant, hairy spider I put by the front door.  The kids in this town have so many ghost stories.  They tell me my house is haunted and that someone died in here.  Well, for Pete’s sake, the house is 103 years old.  I’m thinking someone probably died here.  Maybe I’ll use the glow in the dark paint to paint a ghostly figure and at intervals put it in the upstairs window to see if I can scare up some new stories.  That would be entertaining.

The football team has gone to the playoffs but they are 5 hours away playing today so no chance to go see them.

Got the stovepipe painted – check; got all the garden beds put to bed – check; scared a couple of kids at Halloween – check; got the stove ready to work – check

Just about all the time I have for fun so off for another week of work.








About pbodwell

Master Gardener; Nat'l Award Winning Photographer; Garden Writer; Artist - art books, print maker, hot glass, wire jewelry designer; sometime quilter; new homesteader; bee keeper; very crafty; Baseball fan, enthusiast, and researcher; all things vintage
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