Our washer and dryer moved into the new house today.
And my first closet doors are done.
We haven’t been writing much, but we’ve been busy at work. Here are some things we’ve done lately.
It appears that many people think about painting walls bold colors, but are unsure about going forward with it. I surmise this from the large number of web searches for things like “purple walls” that come to our site. To all of those people, I address this letter.
To Whom It May Concern:
I understand that you are thinking about painting a wall in your house a bright color, but are uncertain and looking for guidance. Here are 10 reasons you should go ahead with your plans:
Paint on a wall is easier to change than many other big decisions we make, like getting married or having a child for example. In fact, you can change the paint in just a few hours and at a minimal cost if you don’t like it. And no one will know.
So, please, go ahead, be bold, and choose some great colors!
Next year’s harvest is in the ground. (October 23) We planted 308 garlic. Almost all the garlic are the Purple Maiskij variety. There are also 21 of the Music variety.
We’ve been eating and sharing (and planting) our garlic since June and still have several pounds left. So, we’re growing about the same amount as we did last year again this year. It takes two beds to hold it all.
The beds the garlic are growing in spent most of the year growing rye as a cover crop. The rye did amazingly well. So well, that we are a little concerned we’ll never get it out of these beds. To that end, we started watering the beds several weeks ago, periodically hoeing up anything that started to grow. Hopefully a few weeks of diligent weeding and we’ll be done with the rye. We did not till the beds this year. We used a hula-hoe to scrape off the rye and weeds; otherwise the soil was left alone.
Every year seems worth a little experimentation. This year we planted cloves from large bulbs and from small bulbs — in alternating rows. I’ve read a lot of theories on whether or not it’s best to plant large or small cloves, but nothing on planting the cloves from large or small bulbs. (That said, cloves from large bulbs tend to be larger.) We also planted some odd bulbs that had no (or one) cloves. Basically they are small bulbs or quite large cloves. I can’t wait to see what comes from them. We also planted on the *moon cycle.
* “From full Moon through the last quarter, or the dark of the Moon, is the best time for killing weeds, thinning, pruning, mowing, cutting timber, and planting below-ground crops.”
The plan is for a little (tiny bit) more water during the winter than in the past and a fair amount more water in the spring. Until spring we will flood the beds to an inch every week to ten day. Once spring comes we will switch to sprinklers and water everyday.
We’re leaving the garlic beds uncovered until they are a couple of inches high. We’re more likely to stay on top of the weeds if it’s easy. Once the garlic are a few inches high, the insect (and quail) netting will go back on for the duration. The quail are the biggest problem for us in the early stages of our garlic crop. There aren’t many things interested in garlic, but the quail are quite fond of it. :)
So this week were were planning to finish the bathroom. One day for the glass block wall. One day for the cabinets under the sink.
The glass block went great. Then we started to assemble the cabinets, and I had an idea. They don’t show much so we were going to make them quickly and easily out of mostly plywood with some nice finished facing. Then I thought about how nice they’d look if they were made out of a higher quality finished wood (our ceiling boards/baseboard wood) that was tongue and grooved together. Also, I thought this would be a nice way to learn some cabinetmaking skills that we might use later in the kitchen. (We still haven’t decided if we are buying cabinets, which would be faster, but more expensive and less nice, or making them, which would be time consuming.)
Four days later, we have a little less than half of the cabinet done.
BUT it’s beautiful. And we’ve learned some things. And they’re really more just what I wanted.
Many decisions like this have led to a house that has a lot more custom work and is much much nicer and has more long-lasting craftsmanship than we’d originally planned. And has taken a year or so longer. I think it’s worth it in the long run. But that’s why it’s taking so long.