Monday, March 13, 2017

Finally - the Custom Kitchen is Under Way

It's been a while since we posted, but that doesn't mean we've been slacking off. Routine things like trimming the horses hooves, making trips to get hay, taking care of the ducks, etc. keep us pretty busy. We also try to make sure we take a little time off once in a while to eat out or take a road trip to enjoy this country that we live in. We're also getting to know some of our neighbors more and are enjoying occasional meals with them and helping them out with some of their projects. Laurie has even found a Scrabble partner and gets together with her about once a week to "Scrabble around".

Laurie also started a new blog called High Country Living (she's really a geek at heart). Check it out!

We're finally getting around to making the custom kitchen that we have envisioned for so long. Before that could begin, however, I had to get my workshop in good working order. This included adding heat so I could work regardless of the weather, purchasing some vitally needed tools for making the cabinets (yes, they really were necessary) and spending some time implementing good dust collection. There is a lot of sawdust generated in woodworking and now is not the time to ignore good health and safety practices. So, now that the shop is in pretty good shape ... let the cabinet making begin!

We spent hours and hours investigating and designing the cabinets in SketchUp. Here is the conceptual design we came up with:
Of course, this is actually more than conceptual. I spend a lot of time creating the exact cabinets with precise dimensions. That way I can take the design out to the wood shop (yes, I have a computer in my wood shop) and refer to it as I construct the cabinets.

So, the upper cabinets are now completed and installed. Here is the overall pic:
You can see that the bottoms cabinets are not done. We're still using crates, shelves and some cheap-o cabinets and counter top until I get the custom ones built.

Here is a closer pic:

We decided to make our cabinets with bypass doors instead of swing-out doors for most of the cabinets. Swing-out doors are such a nuisance! We believe this is a much more practical design and are really pleased with how they are working out.

The base cabinets between the fridge and stove are built and installed. I'm working on the maple butcher block counter top to finish them off. I'll post pics in a week or so when that part is done.

Monday, September 19, 2016

The North 20 Fence

Finally! After several weeks of really hard work, the north 20 acres are now fenced. We turned the horses out into their new pasture last Thursday and they are loving it.

You can see some fall color in the Aspens in several of these pics.

Having this much pasture (about 35 acres for the 3 horses) is going to save us a bunch of money on hay. And, it is such a pleasure to see the horses out in the wide open spaces living more like they were created to live.

Goldie's New Yard

As winter looms in the not too distant future, we have been thinking about a yard for Goldie where she would have protection from the elements when we have to go away. We also had started thinking about another shed at the end of the driveway and near the house. We came up with the idea of making the yard extend from the end of the deck and attaching to the shed where Goldie would have a sheltered area and a warm dog house.

Here's a pic showing Goldie in her yard that extends off the left end of the deck:

She can run free from the yard onto the deck and around the house to the other end of the deck on the east side. She really gets her exercise and can watch over everything on all sides of the house. The shed will be built to the left of the yard where she will have shelter and a dog house.

Here Goldie is using her vantage point from the deck to watch while I'm out feeding the horses:

She's a great watchdog, alerting us to killer bunnies, man-eating deer, etc.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Big Ducks, Little Ducks

The baby ducks have been moved out to the Duckagon with the big ducks. They are separated from the big ducks for a bit until they get a little bigger.

After putting them into the Duckagon, Laurie had to "encourage" them to come out and explore.

The big ducks and Goldie were very interested in these new additions.

It's amazing how fast they grow!

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Ducklings Have Arrived!

Two days old, and pretty darn photogenic!

Whitey (White Layer)

Blackie - Cayuga

Fawn - Fawn & White Runner
Cocoa - Chocolate Runner
Harley - Welsh Harlequin

Quinn - Welsh Harlequin

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Two Years Later

This photo, taken this morning, is what the property looks like now, just 2 years after the above banner photo, which was taken just before we bought the property. We have really enjoyed our home and property, and are still amazed that we live HERE!

It's been nice to "take it easy" a bit, and not feel so pressured to work on the house. We still have a lot of little things to do, but the major part of the work is behind us. We've had some visitors come enjoy the guest house (the RV), and feel like we know more people here in Guffey than we ever did in Wellington. We've enjoyed riding the horses with new friends as well as work with training, and yesterday we took time out to ride to the top of Black Mountain, which overlooks our house. It's nice to be able to take off and ride, which we didn't do much at all last year.

Last week Tim completed the first phase of fencing the property. The "South 20" is now fenced and the horses are enjoying much more area to roam and graze. Eventually we will get the north side fenced as well, and will be able to alternate pastures or let them roam the full 40, with the exception of the area around the house.
This photo looks south from the same hill I stood on to take the view in the previous photo. We only wish we could see through the hill to see the horses when they're on the other side!

The inside of the house is mostly done, and entirely live-able. This panorama looks south, over the living area & tv room to the view out the big picture windows.

This panorama shows the back half of the house, including the kitchen and bedroom.

The kitchen is still in its temporary state, with a make-shift counter and temporary shelves & cabinet. Tim will be building cabinetry in the fall & winter, but until then it is completely functional. Our plans for the bedroom area include custom-made desks and a murphy bed that will become a sofa when not in use as a bed. The bathroom and utility room are behind the kitchen wall.

Goldie has been a great addition to the household. She enjoys being out on the deck, watches everything, and alerts us when anything strange enters the picture, like these deer. She's learned to heel nicely, has learned to stay near us when off-leash on the property, and to come when called. It's nice to see her run and play like a dog should! She loves to play ball, and has learned to get the ball out of the container where it's kept. On hotter days she stays quietly in her shady pen below the deck and when we leave home she can stay there out of the rain.

All in all, we're happy and healthy and glad to be here.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

The Results Are IN!

Goldie's DNA results are in! She is........drumroll............
50% German Shepherd (to Tim's delight)
25% Boxer
12.5% American Staffordshire Terrier
12.5% American Bulldog (but "iffy" on this one, may be a mix)
Now that we know, we can see the German Shepherd  in her, and also the Boxer (her face and ears). Tim is delighted about the GSD, as he has always loved his German Shepherds. She sure is a cutie!

She has been a delight to have around. She has very few discipline problems and it has been fun to begin training her. She is amazingly calm for a puppy of 8 months, and overall is a pretty good girl. She sits nicely, "shakes" and is learning "down". She "stays" for short periods of time and at short distances. She has never had an "accident" in the house. We are working on teaching her to heal, but that is a challenge. We've been searching out different training methods, and trying to pick the right one (or combination) for us and for Goldie. Every dog and every situation is different, and I don't think there is a "one method fits all" approach.

In the evenings she has begun to entertain and exercise herself. Tim has put a gate across the open end of the deck so she can enjoy being outdoors and watch us when we are around the house. She entertains herself quite nicely with a couple of toys out there. She occasionally runs back and forth, back and forth, sometimes carrying a toy, sometimes not. It's quite entertaining for us as well. This evening she appeared to be trying to catch snowflakes as they came down.

We've been calling her the "wonder dog". Prior to receiving the DNA results, it was "I wonder what you are?" And of course, there's "I wonder where you've been all your life. I wonder why you were in the shelter. I wonder why no one else took you before we showed up." Whatever the answers, she certainly is a "wonder dog" for us and we're glad to have found her.