Monday, November 10, 2014

Vintage Cast Iron Mail Box and Winterizing the Casa

I really wish that I had just one more week of good weather.  There are so many little odds and ends that I would like to cross off my list but thanks to another polar vortex, that will probably be impossible.

Today we worked outside until it was dark, which is now just 530PM.  Here in the north, we have to put away items that might crack when it freezes or winterize other items that will remain outside through the next 5-6 months of cold weather.  Notice that I didn't say 'winter' and that's because cold weather arrives before the actual start of winter and will continue on even after it is still technically 'spring'.

So today I did the following in preparation for the big chill.

1. Stored the glazing balls inside.  Since they are round and can roll, it is a pain to store these but I love them so I deal with it.

2. Turned over the concrete bird bath bowls so that they cannot fill with water that will freeze.  When the water freezes it can cause damage to the bird bath bowl.

3.  Put away the garden hoses.  It is best to drain and coil them while it is still warm outside.  Our yard has a lot of hills so I just stretch them out so that the water can run out of them with the help of gravity.  When I lived in a house with a flat yard I had to blow the water out,  Back then I had better lungs.  It is best to coil up the hoses on a sunny day so that the hoses are more pliable.  I use duct tape to keep them from uncoiling until I need them again in the spring.  We store our hoses in the basement part of our garden shed.

4.  Pull up all the annuals, rake up the leaves, twigs, and needles that are on the driveway.  We can't possibly rake up all the leaves that fall in our yard.  Even if we could it would be a waste of time because throughout the winter additional leaves will blow into the yard and drop from the pin oaks later in the spring.

5.  Put away ladders, wood, garden tools etc.

6.  Plant garlic.  I'm kind of late on this chore.  We planted three types this year, Cherokee Red, Homestead, and Hardy German.   I also planted 3 Knockout roses that I bought last Saturday for $3.00 each.  We decided to plant them in the garden in their pots so that in the spring I can relocate them permanently.  Where that will be is unknown but at 3 bucks each I just had to buy them.

7.  Move the snow blowers to the front of the shed by the door and move the lawnmowers to the back.

8.  Drain the gas from the lawnmowers and the weed whackers.  Fill the tanks of the snow blowers (2).

9.  Walk around and check to make sure that the eave troughs are not plugged with twigs, leaves or walnuts.

10. Make sure that anything that can blow away or blow over is secured.

11.  Turn over wrought iron chairs and remove glass tops and store in garage.  Always store glass table tops on their edge, which is the strongest part of the glass.

12.  Make sure the windows in the barn and garden shed are secured shut.  Some have locks and others have bent nails for locks (these will be changed when we restore those windows).

We are done with painting and priming this year.  Should the weather ease up a bit after the big P.V. we might prime and paint the front door.  By hanging plastic and using our ceramic heater, I think we could get away with painting while it is 40 degrees outside.  We still have some caulking to do and some white trim that needs a top coat but that can wait until next spring if we cannot get to it.

Once the door is painted we can install the new bronze weather stripping that we ordered.  We ordered enough to do all of our exterior doors.  This allowed us to save on shipping by getting it all in one shipment.

The vintage mail box is installed and has the vintage pad lock attached.  We love the look and think that it really helps in recreating that 1920-1930 feel.