Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Water, grow, and mow......repeat weekly from April to November

Today, I mowed the front yard at "The Gear". We really could use some rain. If it were not for the long green grass around all my fruit trees, I really wouldn't have needed to mow.

I think the root feeder/water is really doing a good job keeping the fruit trees watered. Also, I am sure it is far more efficient than letting water run off or evaporate. With the root feeder/waterer the water goes directly to the roots. It also has a little area where you can add fertilizer pellets for deep root feeding. The trees are looking good, even in the heat.

Today I changed the photo of Gear Acres to reflect it's current state. I then added the photo that I used Paint Shop to change the color from light yellow to dark grey. I thought maybe that would give some of you some relief...LOL.....until I can actually paint the house.

Looks like this Sunday we will be in Lansing watching our son race at Spartan Speedway. It will be his second outing in a WOMS midget. He did very well the first time out this past Saturday night, but shattered a brake rotor in the heat race and was done for the night.

Here's a before photo of the area along the drive that we cleared out, removed stumps, leveled, and then planted grass seed. Some of the thick brush had already been removed in the photo.
Here is a photo of the leveling process.......our shoulders were killing us. This part took two full days because of all the roots, slope, along with it being 90+ degrees.
And here is what it looks like now. The grass is coming in nicely. Looks better and with just the grass and level ground, it should be far easier to mow.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Hail Hail the storm hit here!!!

During my two week vacation and I use that term "vacation" lightly, we had a brief very intense thunderstorm that produced quite a lot of hail. Here is a plant I was getting ready to put in the ground when the storm hit. Ironically it is called an Iceberg plant.

The storm knocked quite a few leaves and small branches off the trees. We lost one very large branch off the large oak in the front yard. There were places in the landscaping that looked like someone had broken open a bag of rock salt.

Disclaimer.......This past week I worked 7 days 12 hrs each day so the house did not get painted. As a matter of fact nuttin got done on the house. Tomorrow I need to mow the lawn at the Torrey Rd address so nuttin will get done at "The Gear" until Tuesday. Just warning all of you, so you don't expect too much out of me.

Also I was remiss and didn't give Tony Stewart a shout out for his win last week at Chicagoland. Goooooo Smoke.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.....

Ok....I know I haven't posted in awhile and I'll just fess up right now. "No, the house didn't get painted yet."

I will remember in the future not to make any predictions about completing jobs. During my two weeks off I was asked the following questions.

My cousin Judy asked......."Why haven't you been blogging? are you busy painting the house?"

My coworker Gary who stopped by for a visit......"Are you sure you'll have this house painted by the 14th?" Duh....he asked me that on the 10th and at that time had not even located a paint brush much less opened a can of paint.

And of course my Mother who always asks...."When are you going to start painting?"

To all of you I say........"Pshaw....I'm waiting for the chipped and peeling paint look to become all the rage in exterior painting schemes. I am so far ahead of the trend it's ridiculous. Oh and just a reminder to my Mother and Barbara, NO COPYING!!!!! I know copying is the sincerest form of flattery, but I think my peeling paint is so over the top that anything you might just wouldn't measure up. So stick with your nice unchipped, unfaded, and unpeeled paint.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Just because I didn't paint doesn't mean we didn't get anything done. We basically have finished the front and side yard landscaping. We are currently waiting for the Round Up to kill the vegetation on the sun room side of the house. Roger seems to be allergic to something growing there. I don't think it is poison ivy but the rash looks similar. After it dies back we will level and plant grass and install our 7'6" cast iron fountain.

We did remove all the rocks by the back door that were embedded (4' X 20') in concrete. That took 2 days of sledge hammering and pry bar work. Roger said he felt like he was in prison. You know....... busting big ones into little ones. OR at least that's what I thought he meant when he said he felt like he was in prison.........maybe I should have asked for clarification on that comment.

We also moved some very large rocks from under the deck to the front yard. We are building a large ring of rocks around a large Ash tree. The tree is maybe 24 inches in diameter and is raised above ground level. By encircling the tree with large rocks we will be able to fill the area with dirt and plant Hostas. I'm thinking a hosta variety in chartreuse green or maybe yellow. I want something that will stand out in the shade.

We also met our neighbor across the street. Roger bought a cement mixer from him. He filled us in on all the local history of our neighborhood. Nice meeting you....Don.

Of course you know what they say about all work and no play........the house gets painted???? Hey...I told's a new trend...let's move on. We also went to 3 car races. Angola Motor Speedway..... very nice clean facility. Toledo older somewhat historic speedway, where a lot of now famous drivers raced on their way up the ladder. And last but not least Dixie Motor Speedway. The Kerns have done a great job resurrecting that speedway. The new banking makes it fast fast fast.

We also took in a Detroit Tigers baseball game at Comerica Park on July 4th. I took these photos of the tiles above the turnstile.

We also survived the Buick Open. I had several run ins with trespassers. I have a plan for next year. I will ask all trespassers (nicely of course) to turn around and go back out to the street and go around. If they don't or if they start to give me a bunch of excuses as they continue through my property, they will promptly be sprayed with the garden hose right in the crotch area. Then I will get my camera out and take their photo. They can then walk around at the Buick Open looking like they misjudged the holding capacity of their bladder.

Tomorrow I will try and catch everyone up on the hail storm and new landscaping photos.