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Thursday, September 1, 2011

It's Happy Birthday Month!

I've been so inundated with weather the past week I forgot that a New Month has rolled around - my favorite month. My Happy Birthday Month. Old friends know I like to celebrate all 30 days of September, not just because it's got my birthday in it (the 21st) but also because the worst of the hot weather is over, I can start putting away those summer clothes I've grown so tired of, good tasting apples come back into the stores, and it's the start of the Monday Holiday season. There's Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans Day ... not always a Monday, but good enough. Plus there are the Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's holidays looming and then those add-ons that shorten the work weeks in January and February. I know. Spoiled Rotten - that's what I am. But I love me a 4 day work week.

As for our recent weather adventure - well, we did alright. We lost a passel of old trees.

 BD is out in the woods every day opening up the old paths - at least, the main one that takes you out to the mailbox ... which he also had to repair.

He says some of those paths will never be re-opened. He's spent a lifetime building them and he doesn't think he'll live long enough to put them back. Where limbs aren't blocking the way, huge stump holes have opened up across them. I don't have any photos of the deep woods because I've been sick-hearted enough just looking at the damage you can see out in the fields.

But of all the losses - this was the worst. We were overjoyed on Sunday morning to see the big oak tree still stood. It has two trunks - one which stands straight and tall and a second that leaned way over the lane, making a green tunnel opening to our farm.

Especially when we saw the road just beyond had washed away!

An hour or so later as we had lunch on the back porch we heard a tremendous crash and knew something else had gone down. It was the leaning limb - and it took 3 guys, a chain saw and a front end loader just to move it out of the lane.

It's an enormous change to the landscape around here - and sadder than any of our other losses because we've loved this tree for so many years. Until Sunday it was the biggest tree on the farm with a limb span of about 290 feet. It's a willow oak - some call them pin oaks - and of the trees we lost, most were oaks and most of the oaks were willow oaks.

There was more road damage at the back end of the farm but it didn't take Guys with Tools long to fix up the worst of it all and over time we'll fill in the gaps with more stones, clay and dirt and new trees.

We had a little water damage to the house - nothing we can't fix. The chimney bricks had soaked up so much water they began to weep like some Catholic saint statue and though the whole chimney was soaked in the attic, the seeping never made it all the way to the second story floor. The worst spot was the bathroom ceiling and we were planning on renovating that anyway. Maybe not doing sheet rock in the ceiling but once we have workmen there what's a few square inches of sheet rock. All the timbers in the house are oak so they're far less susceptible to water damage.

What else is going on at TheCastle? We have electricity back and we feel utterly and completely indulged with the luxury of running water, internet connections, DVD players and late night knitting. Yes. There is knitting at TheCastle and I'll be back to share with you both fiber talk and WIP photos as well as paeans of praise for an adorable yarn shop: Dog House Yarns where I discovered (and bought some of) my new favorite yarn Shepherd's Wool.

So - see you soon with photos!

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