Saturday, May 26, 2012

Around the Back 40

Caroline is on the way to the airport, I ran a few errands and just returned from my manicure.  It is kind of a lazy, Saturday afternoon and I decided to see what James has been up to outside for the last few weeks.  I brought my camera along to share.  I have been so busy preparing lessons and we have had wonderful overnight guests twice this past week so I have not had a minute to go check out his current project.  He's really been bustin' a move up there since I last checked.  First, if you haven't seen the road he and Dave built a few months ago here is Via Tasso:  It's named for Jim's ancestors' village in the Province of Genoa, Italy.  When you build a road it requires a fitting name, don't you agree?

This is the middle half of the road.  It curves into and connects to the driveway in the front.  It is wide enough for a small truck, the tractor and a small car which provides access to the area he's working in now. He is planning his workshop but first things first.  He has to build a barn for some of his cool treasures.  So here is the framing for it.

When I saw this I said, "Wait hold the phone...back up.  Let's fan the barn idea and make this into a fabulous little guest cottage."  Ah, no, it didn't fly, but can you just see it?  He pacified me by saying he does, indeed, want to build one but where the old Green storage shed now sits.  OK, I can be appeased with that idea in mind.  This barn will have aluminum siding in forest green and will be camouflaged from all the house windows.  Yay!  It has its own little alcove surrounded by greenery.  Here is a photo with him in it so you can see the size and scale of it.

Here are  few more pictures of the yard, au naturale.  No flowers and nothing really set up for summer yet but hey, I am sitting here with a little space heater right now so I don't think I am late yet.  Summer,  like the rest of this year is running behind, right along with me.  The area right to the right or north of this picture and slightly down the hill is where his shop is going.  The area below is just to the left or south of the photo.

This is a picture of the back, back 40 where the orchard was years ago.  Now is is the most open space on our property.  I seriously have not set foot on that part of the yard in years (pathetic, I know).  But I will more now that the activity for Jim will be centered out here a lot more.

This area is north east of the barn and just due east of the projected sight of the new workshop.  This area originally had a horseshoe pit and this is going back to that at some point.  You may not know this but Jim's paternal grandparents lived just two doors away from here back in the mid 40's until about 1964.  During Jim's childhood he and his brother played here with the two boys that lived here then.  So he is very familiar with the way it was in the old days.  There is a bit of a restoration going on here.

He would always tell me about this house when we were young and daydreaming of owning our own home one day.   We got very beyond lucky and were able to buy it 34 years ago and his dream became his reality.  So he has deep ties to this land. After 34 years, we both do.

This is our pond.  Jim put the bubbler in it a couple of years ago so we can always hear the water.  That is a real relaxer when all the windows are open.  It also has a beautiful waterfall but we need a new pump that doesn't cost a fortune to run (think spa or hot tub costs).  We mostly only turn that on when we have parties outside.  I love our Venus, she watches over the pond for us.  This is about half of the pond that is visible in the photo.  Our friend and Landscape Designer Extraordinaire, Larry, built this beautiful pond for us for the cost of the materials.  What a beautiful guy. He passed away a few years back~it broke our hearts.  Such a wonderful, generous man and not even approaching old age when he left us.  This has happened way too many times among our good friends.  We call this pond, Larry's Monument.

OK, so here I am just completing the loop and heading back in to write this post.  The big window you see is the back side of our family room and the new road runs right by it and into the front yard and the driveway.  I don't dare stay away from the project outside this long again, no telling what I'll find up there.  I am so proud of my hubby.  He is a man of many talents and I am the lucky recipient of his hard work most of the time.  I never take it for granted because I appreciate it so much and try to do all I can to make his life better too.  You learn that after nearly 44 years of marriage I guess, as I appreciate his contributions even more with each passing year.  When you come to know you are a team pulling the load together, life becomes sweet.  It feels like we are coagulated pretty well~it is a lifelong journey.  In the end everything you go through together just sweetens the pot.  Life is wonderful on this lazy Saturday afternoon in CA.  I hope it is where you are too.  You have the power within you to make it just that~wonderful!  Do it!

Love you, each and every one of you, but then you knew that...Bon  :-)


Marie said...

What a fab project! Jim has done so very well. That is quite a "shed!" Todd is not handy like that at fact you can't even trust a picture he has hung to stay hung! xxoo

Sister Susie said...

I don't know how people can do so much manual work! (See my blog.) GOD bless those that have such strength to do the things you shared in your blog!
Love to you and yours, Susan