December, 2012 browsing by month


December brick work

Friday, December 28th, 2012

We have been putting the time this month to use, laying lots and lots of adobe brick. We’ve also got a couple lintels (big wood beams over the windows) up now. And we have the fireplace done (and working). We designed the brick arrangement ourselves and I’m really happy with how it turned out.

We put in a new half stepped wall in the main entryway. Here is a picture with that with the wall into which we incorporated some wine rack spaces.

And here are Brad and I, demonstrating that the lintel is indeed quite strong. (It will be holding up brick to the ceiling.)

These bricks weigh close to 40 pounds each. By now, we have moved several thousand pounds of brick each. (And the higher we get up the wall, the more exercise this provides.)

The holidays

Monday, December 24th, 2012

It’s times like these that make me aware of how increasingly different our lives are from many other folks.

While others seem to be rushing around doing last minute shopping, worrying about whether the last Fed Ex packages will arrive, and taking trips to be somewhere else (I know because I read this on social media…and of course, I remember doing these things myself, though it seems a long way away from where I am now), we are having a leisurely breakfast and then going out to lay more bricks. We’ve never been much into the holidays, but this year, they are noticed even less than usual.

InĀ  small nod to tradition, I did make a big pot of tamales yesterday. They were ok, but I’m not sure they were worth the trouble. (Brad might disagree; he liked them more than I did.)

At any rate, we wish everyone peace this holiday season.

New woodworking tool

Thursday, December 20th, 2012

I’ve been doing a lot of woodworking with rough finish wood. It’s nice to work with because it’s rough and meant to be “imperfect,” but you can’t really sand out any problems that you don’t want to show in the final piece. I found a great new tool to use on rough lumber though. It’s basically a hard nylon brush that goes on a drill. It works great for getting out black marks and smoothing out (in a rough way) other things.

In other news, we got the ceiling board lumber so I have lots of staining work to do. (Dad, we miss you!)


Friday, December 14th, 2012

After yesterday’s post, I went to do a little work on our dictionary and learned something new. Battens are long strips of wood or metal used to fasten something down, so yesterday battening our hatches was exactly what we did.

Last night, we got about 1/2 inch of rain, and there is snow in the canyon. The wind is blowing something fierce.

December 13

Thursday, December 13th, 2012

For the gardening record, today was the day I finally brought in the last of the green tomatoes.

Just enough for a pint or so of green tomato salsa.

We spent most of the morning here battening down the hatches in preparation for a big storm that is approaching. The winds are blowing fiercely, and ominous clouds are amassing on the horizon.


Friday, December 7th, 2012

We’ve been getting some good work done on the house this week, both on the exterior doors and adobe in the front room.

This little curved part will be where the corner fireplace will go. Lots of cutting of bricks and fussing with mortar joints on this part. (Mortar is still wet in this picture, which is why it’s darker.)

The weather here has been nice, in the 70s during the day and close to, but not quite, freezing at night. (We’re supposed to dip down into the 20s this week. I wonder if that will be the end of my tomatoes.)