If anyone's been wondering where we've been and what we're up to, you can blame the long silence on the sudden outbreak of Global Warming (also knowing as Springtime) that's been keeping me outside and wearing me out by nightfall. Ben has been very busy with the big website programming project he's been working on for the last few months and I've been working on cleaning up the yard.
To date, I've cut down seven or eight young trees, trimmed four very large evergreen bushes, raked a lot of leaves, trimmed ivy out of all the places ivy goes that it shouldn't, wrestled with a lot of old nightshade vines, recovery-pruned a big rosebush, and cut down the old stalks from about a dozen peonies growing on each side of the house. That doesn't count miscellaneous weeding and a lot of time spent on the whole, "Okay...what is this and should I pull it out?" debate that comes with new houses when you've never really seen the landscaping do what it's supposed to. From the looks of things, our house really hasn't had the landscaping cared for in probably two years, possibly three judging by the height of all the young poplars I cut down. I'm not always sure how much to do, since I know the yard is about to get pretty torn up during construction; but those trees had to go! While I'm usually a big proponent of "let it grow because it looks nice there", the trees were growing in all kinds of places that they should not be, including right up next to the house. There's certainly no room for a big ol' cottonwood snuggled up next to our foundation.
The forsythia bush outside our bedroom window is so full of flowers that the whole bedroom is yellow when the sun comes in. It helps that the walls are a pale cream-yellow to start with, but when you look down the hall the light coming out of the bedroom is bright golden yellow. I'm sad that the bush won't survive construction but very glad to see we have another in the back of the yard and space to transplant a few babies in another section.
Grandma Lila has been sitting out in our ramshackle little sunroom since it's nice and warm in there during the day. I think she enjoys the change of scene; she's also enjoying being able to walk next door, which is what the physical therapist is doing with her on these nice warm days. Actually, the last goal the therapist set for Grandma was to be able to walk next door and now that she's achieved it, he's going to be discharging her from care this week. He says she's doing better than he's ever seen her do and he's been working with her since she first arrived in assisted living last year. That is special news indeed!
Mom Turner has been coming and spending more time here with Grandma to allow me to go with Ben in the afternoon to help work on the Big Website Project, since the deadline for the site going live is in five days and there's a lot of data entry work to be done. They've also been doing some outings together like going to a movie and visiting assisted living so Grandma could give a little piano concert. Mom is much better at thinking up stuff like this than we are, that's for sure. I think sometimes we must be kind of boring company.
We greatly appreciate Mom putting in all the extra time this week especially, because not only does it mean extra income but Ben and I are getting to spend some extra time together almost like we used to. We've really missed that time the past few months. It's very strange that in some ways, being married has meant being apart more than we used to be. I don't expect this exact situation will always be the case - Ben has been doing a lot of work from home and the more he does, the more the company he contracts for gets used to it. He's been a very, very valuable contractor the past few months and when you get valuable, you start getting to be more flexible.
Along with basic data entry, I've been getting some practice in using HTML code, which I haven't done any work with for several years. It's coming back to me, though, and I'm getting to make some of the data I'm entering actually look pretty. Even if I didn't make the original templates, it's fun to be the one applying them!
Ben and I have also been working on getting ready for the new addition, which included creating a file to track the receipts for what we've spent so far and keeping track of what we'll spend in the future. We were going to work on creating drawings two weeks ago, but my family contracted the flu and we've been waiting for everyone to stop coughing and feel better. Dad Tuckfield has the programs and the knowledge to take our sketches from paper and pencil to formal prints we can use for all the important stuff like working out little kinks in the plans, budgeting, and submitting for permits (which we already have all the forms for). We've been having lots of suggestions given to us since we first started talking over the addition and I think the plans have taken a solid, reasonable form; though once we start doing formal drawings it's anyone's guess how many interesting new ideas may come up and turn what we've got now into something altogether better. We even altered some ideas a few weeks ago when we went with Dad Turner to Outdoorama and toured a very tiny house. Since then, I've been looking at ideas from people who've built super tiny houses like this one simply because while I know we've got a much, much bigger space...well, why not maximize it?
And yes, since my last post, we've remained healthy around here. Grandma's foot isn't swollen, Ben is all back to normal, and so am I.
Though personally...I think the warm weather is what brought me back to normal. Nothing like a few days working hard on the landscaping to make me feel settled and myself again!
Wife of Benjamin and mother to two wonderful little girls who are getting bigger every day. Enjoys writing down thoughts and discussions we are having within the family and sharing them with whoever is interested in reading.
Please don't be shy! If you're reading the blog updates, we'd like to hear what you think. Click on the "comments" link to send us a note.