You are currently browsing the monthly archive for July 2012.

Monday we were headed out for our second load of hay. We found this waiting for us in the barn that morning. Thanks Sake, your timing is impeccable.

Meet Splash. She had a beautiful brother. He didn’t have an easy time entering this world, and sadly he didn’t stay with us long. Splash is a determined little thing. The bottle seemed to flummox her, but she got fed before we headed out for our second round of hay.

It was about 10 degrees cooler in the field for this load. We would have made it under the cloud cover if not for the Splash delay. Little Miss has gotten more confident with the use of the hay hook and she’s now trying to drag the bales on her own. She can actually move the lighter ones.

Here are the results of our second Hay Day. Please note the new tire swing. Thank you Wendell of CSR for the used motorcycle tire. Daddy rigged up the rope system and the tire swing has been a HUGE hit. Although we are now plagued with requests for a push. The goat girls are adjusting to the latest invasion of their space quite well. There are only a few snorts on the way to the milk stands now.


“Make hay while the sun shines!”

In Washington, that is no joke. Summer arrived on the 4th of July, and by the 5th anyone with a field was cutting hay. The hay lady called to let us know that they had our hay ready to pick out of the field on Sunday.

The Little Miss has always accompanied us on the hay hauling trips. While the bales have always weighed more than she does, she makes the effort to help. This year she is finally tall enough to make them move a bit.

It was HOT in the field. About 85 or so (OK, not so hot to some of you in the central plains states) and of course it didn’t help that we are old and out of shape. Em thought that the large sprinkler a few fields over looked like it might be fun, until I pointed out that the “water” was green and smelled like cow poop.

Missy found that she could drag the hay bales quite easily across the floor of the trailer. She took to pulling the bales to the edge so I could load them into the barn where Dad was stacking them. She needed help pulling the bales down so they didn’t squish her, but she was very helpful.

This is our first 100 for the season. We have another 100 to pick on Monday! Whoo Hoo!


The two boxes of tile showed up this morning with the arrival of the Cody Express, right on schedule. An incentive of breakfast probably didn’t hurt.

This has been an adventure. The stove is in the living room and the refrigerator is in the dining room. Our main source for cooking has either been the microwave or the grill. Thankfully the grill has a side burner. I still have baby goats on milk and I need to pasteurize it first. I am not used to cooking with propane, and my guess is that this heat dial is a lot less sensitive than a regular stove top would be. I told the family “It’s like camping, but with a decent bathroom, and without the tents!”

After breakfast, Eric hit the home stretch of laying down the tile. It was at this point we realized exactly how un-square our kitchen was, and why the tile box recommended a quarter inch grout line. The tiles aren’t square either and the 1/4″ would give some fudge room. We have a few funky lines, but we have the floor tiled!

To give himself a much needed break, my sweet husband decided to put the hitch in the back of the truck for the stock trailer. We are “on call” for the first load of hay for the season. I should hear by this evening if the hay will be ready for pick up Sunday or Monday. The fun just never ceases!

We did not get to the grout today. The lawn got mown, last year’s hay was shifted around, and all of the odds and ends that had migrated into the barn have been returned to their proper location. The call came. We have a hay run tomorrow.

This is the island that we are going to wire the thermostat into to control the floor heat. It was the closest source of electricity, so with a few new holes it is ready to go. A good excuse to clean out the pots and pans I guess.

The heating coils are down and the electric is run across the floor. Eric learned after the bathroom project, that if you make a groove for the connecting wiring to lie in, the rest of the tiles lay much flatter as you go. You can get the mats in differing lengths, but this is the area where most of the kitchen work happens so the four foot span is just right.

All covered up! He did make a notch for the lead wires, but forgot for the tail. You can join multiple mats together for different room configurations, so the tail wires are wrapped with a bit more bulk for connecting. So there is an extra bit of thin-set and some weight on the problem tile.

Well, we are one box short on the tile. Apparently we didn’t completely compensate for all of the cuts we were going to have to make, nor did we factor in breakage during shipping. We need 7 more tiles and they come 8 to a box. Our personal Home Depot delivery service kid will be home from work and the gym about 9AM with two more boxes. A few of the tiles arrived broken when we opened the boxes. That would make for a very unpleasant scene if there were two in the box that were cracked, so we went for safe. I can always take one back!


We got the concrete backer board all laid down yesterday before we headed out for the family barbeque. Eric finished fastening it down this morning.

I was given the assignment of figuring out how to use the leftover tile from the bathroom to design the entryway. We wanted something a bit different from the kitchen in that space.

This is what we ended up with. There weren’t enough of the bathroom tiles to complete the entry way using them alone. My husband actually admitted that all of that quilting finally came in handy!

This is where we stopped this evening. Until the heating coils are laid down we can’t go any further. I have requested that there be a patch of radiant floor heating in the space between the kitchen sink and the island as I spend a lot of time standing there, and that tile can be darned cold in the winter.

My griping about cold tiles in the bathroom resulted in the heating being installed under the tile in the master bath when we renovated that space a few years ago. No one has had any complaints about the warm floors in the winter!

One small leak resulted in this.

We have contemplated replacing the linoleum in the kitchen with tile since we moved in. It just hasn’t been a real priority. Until now. The cheap underlayment is not supposed to be exposed to moisture, so you put it in a kitchen? Anyhow.

We have found a nice tile for the kitchen floor. After the experience with the bathroom floor, my sweet husband decided the bigger the tile and the least amount of a pattern, the better. Although I did drag out the quilt books just to see if I could tempt him. He did say that if he had months to cut the tiles, he might consider several of the patterns.

Today he and the junior foregirl headed to the hardware store for the concrete backer board, the radiant heat pad and the grout, while I tried to empty as much out of the fridge as possible.  We had to move out the fridge and the stove so we can tile under them. We are going to leave the dishwasher alone since we think we can still get it out over the lip of the tile once we are done. There were some interesting things under the stove (the letter U, a matchbox car, a bottle cap, and some other unidentified things) and a huge dust bunny colony under the fridge!

The fridge is a beast. It took my step-sister, her mom, and I to get the thing in the house the first time. We wrestled that thing into the house just to find out that I was right and the fridge was going to be about 1/4″ too tall. The salesman assured us that the measurements were usually a bit bigger than the product, after he insinuated that I might not have measured correctly. (I quilt you idiot. I know how much difference a quarter of an inch can make!) So with the help of a saws-all and a plane, we were able to trim the cabinet facing to make the fridge fit.

The fridge barely fit on the linoleum, which is significantly thinner than the new flooring will be. We may have a completely new space above the fridge when we are finished!