Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Winter Chores

With winter, different work happens on the farm.  We still have to feed the horses and the chickens, and the chickens are not pleased with the cold and wind and go off laying a bit.  Our chores end up being more indoors and they are not necessarily hard chores.  This week we've been planning our garden for next season as the seed catalogs are arriving in the mailbox.  What fruit trees to plant, reading "The Apple Grower" by Michael Phillips,  to more effectively grow  organic apples.  We are also working on the indoor changes.  We are slowly placing our mark on the house repainting each room and putting the changes that make it uniquely our own.  The other day I found 200 year old growth pine in a stack of wood in the attic.  How do I know?  The saw marks are straight across the board which indicates pre circular saws which became popular around 1850 and by the end of the century were in the most use.  2nd, the board I cut in half was 17 inches wide, which makes me think old growth timbers.  The one board we are using for the top of the mantel was 2 inches thick and totally clear, over six feet long.  If you looked at the growth rings they were tight and too close to count.  What to do with this wood?  Well the house was built in the  1830's but the fireplace mantel is 1950's and not our tastes.  So take the old wood and build a fireplace mantel ala "Shaker" style.  Once we paint the room the mantel is going up and I'll post picts, so far after the 2nd coat of Danish oil it looks beautiful.  I'll post picts as we get the room done.

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