I have spent the last two weeks out in the garage almost every day staining the wood. Each piece gets two coats of Cabot solid color acrylic deck stain. (solid color stain because it looks like paint, but it lets the wood breathe and dry, plus doesn't flake off in later years. It just soaks into the wood and I can restain it when it may need it)
I have four sets of saw horses laid out and I am rotating wood from side to side, four times flipping so every side gets coated. Then I lay a small piece of cardboard with a number on it, on top of the boards, especially if I get interrupted. Then I know where I left off with which number or coating it is. Everything needs 2 coats to look good.
Cranking tunes on the radio
while I rock on my staining clothes
and my pinned up hair!
We started installing it last week. Thanks to our friends Mike and Heidi White for lending us their gas powered post hole digger, we can work one post at a time and build it as we go.
We started with the far northwest corner.... It was quite exciting to start with the first corner post. We made sure it is level and screwed on the horizontal top and bottom boards and put in another post in each direction to hold it perfectly square. After our first pieces were in, it was easy to keep on going.
Here is my Man....
Our topsoil is nice and rich but as soon as you get down about 6 inches it is all clay. Very sticky thick clay. It sticks to all the tools, and comes out in huge clumps. I can see why Chilton used to have a brick yard nearby to make clay bricks. It even sticks on the bottom of our shoes and does not scrape off unless you use a garden trowel to remove it forcefully.
Over a few days, we worked the west and north fence lines and got all of the top and bottom boards in place. It looks kinda strange, but this is only the structure framing and needs to be perfectly plumb up and down plus follow the contour of the ground horizontally.
On the rainy days, while I was busy staining spindles, Steve was getting a few other projects done. He had a lawnmower to tune up for the museum, a roof leak to take care of on the motorhome, plus working part time for the county driving the Old Fart Party Bus.
We started installing the spindles earlier this week. I came up with the bright idea of using a spacer board with a top guide piece that helped with the height of each spindle and a handle to pull it away after the spindle was screwed into place.
We completed the front area by the back steps which is the original doggy potty yard. It is now almost twice the size it once was where we used the tall black dog kennel to block an area off. I put the kennel on Craigslist and sold that the other night.
Also, while all this is going on we had a few family things happen. Our wonderful Steveio decided he would have his last birthday ever at 59 years of age. He said he doesn't want to turn 60 so he will never celebrate another birthday. He will just keep being 59, year after year. Silly boy. We had all of the kids and grandkids come over for a party in the backyard. Oh boy, it would have been nice to have the fence in place already. It was a very nice time and the kids had a blast:
Our son and son-in-law helped to remove our mattress from the house to bring it to the motorhome. The best way was out the back shaker porch, and our son and son-in-law figured out the best way to get it down to the ground. LOL
Here's is a video clip
Another night I had kept the youngest granddaughter Claire for an overnight. It was so much fun having a wee baby again. Here is something I have done with all of my children and grandchildren and decided since this is probably the last grandchild I would make a video of it to save for posterity.
We also had a nice visit from the honeymoooners from Florida who were doing a whirlwind tour of all the relatives in Michigan and Wisconsin. We only got them for one overnight... but they were trying to get in stops with everyone. Meet our new father, Lyle and his blushing bride, Mom~
Also, last Monday, my sister Linda and her husband Fuzz came down from Michigan to attend a food show by the vendor who supplies inventory for their bar and grill they own in the U.P. of Michigan. We had a lot of fun and got a lot of free samples!
Well, I started this blog early about 7 am. But then the slavedriver said let's get out there and finish up some more spindles! We got 4 more sections done and just came in for a break while I cooked some breakfast. It's time to get back out there and get more done!