Thursday, April 28, 2011

A Message in a Bottle

IMG_1583   IMG_1582

As I was digging holes for my “Vineyard” I unearthed a glass bottle with a message inside.  We opened the bottle and though the paper was wet we were able to read the writing.

   About 3 years ago some missionaries were on furlough and were our neighbors for a few months.  One of their sons and Noah became very good friends and nearly inseparable during the summer.  The message just said that Noah was his friend and gave the date and his signature.


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Cutting & Digging

IMG_1563  Since we have gotten back from the trip we have been making plans for this year’s gardening….which for all intents and purposes is really our first year of gardening.

Benjamin added some sunlight for our garden area by cutting down this tree:IMG_1566IMG_1562


Existing grapes and and a hole for new grapes


   The 3 of us…or actually the 4 of us….have our own special project apart from the vegetable garden.  Noah is growing blueberries, Benjamin is growing blackberries, Mom is growing a herb garden and I am growing grapes.

   Whenever we first moved to our property the previous owners sold produce they grew on their land and they had apples, strawberries, peaches, grapes, pears, mulberries and blackberries.  We pretty much have not touched the grape vine, but amazingly it is still alive and, though In need of some heavy pruning, produces fruit and is in fairly decent shape.

   I’ll be taking of the existing grape vine and will be making a new row of grapes.  I began digging holed for the plants to go into and I’ve also got holes dug for the posts that the wire will be attached to keep the vines off of the ground.

Storm Damage II

IMG_1515   Last Tuesday we our area had severe storms that included tornados and large hail.  Friends just across town had egg-sized hail that damaged their cars and make it sound like the roof was going to collapse.

   Tuesday night we were driving back home from Cincinnati when we got caught in the storm and had to exit the highway and wait out the storm.  The rain came in torrents and there was some hail as well.  After about 2 1/2 hours of waiting we decided we needed to get closer towards home and got back onto the highway.  It was 2am before we made it home after battling wet roads and heavy rain.

   You may remember that just a few weeks ago a branch fell on our deck and ripped the canopy. Well, on Wednesday we found that another branch had fallen on top of, but not through, the canopy.


Oh yeah, just as an update, Benjamin' has now pumped well over 150 gallons of water from our basement!




Monday, April 25, 2011


IMG_1552   While we were walking out of the door to go to church yesterday morning we found that water had come in downstairs and that saw that there was a puddle in the bathroom floor.   The problem had become worse when we got back home that afternoon and water had moved to a couple of other rooms.

  We didn’t know where the water was coming from.  At first we thought that there was a leak behind the shower..drywall is dry…maybe the drain overflowed….water originated from a different place in the basement..toilet leaking…toilet is completely dry.  It’s been raining at our house for a few days and the ground is completely saturated, so we figured that the rain had something to do with the problem.

  We almost never have a problem with water coming into our basement, but like 85% of other homeowners it does happen at some point.

IMG_1542  We hadn’t cleaned out the gutters yet this year, so Mom and I got on the roof and found that the guttering was very clogged up and probably played a role in the mischief.  Being up on the roof in work clothes in the rain wasn’t in our plans for Easter, but you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do.

IMG_1510   Benjamin worked for hours and hours yesterday and today running the Shop Vac to suck up the water.   He’s already emptied  100 gallons of water, but the water would just re-appear up to a certain level.  Mom did some research this morning and found that probably what we have going on is a water table below our foundation that has filled up and can’t be absorbed into the very over-saturated ground.  Benjamin found that the water was seeping up through a crack in the basement floor.

A sump pump should ensure that this never happens again, so in the near future we will be using a jackhammer to bust up the concrete to make way for the new pump.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

17-Driving to Cincinnati



We had to leave this afternoon to make the drive to Cincinnati to visit the Creation Museum.  It was very cold and windy and there was some snow falling.




The bag that we had used to hold the luggage on the top of the van had shredded up it’s waterproof liner on the drive up, so we talked about maybe using tarps or of not using the bag at all.  Long story short we went ahead and used the bag and checked it every time we made a stop.





We left at around 2:30 and drove South back through Detroit.






We did some reading again while we drove.  We we’re working our way through John Dwyer’s book on “America’s Uncivil War.”  We’ve enjoyed it a lot and will be the subject of a future blog post.


16-Deanna’s Birthday & Site seeing



On the 15th we pretty much just hanged out at the apartment, but today we got in the van and drove around the area.




The first and obviously the most important thing we did was to get the dog’s nails clipped at the Tender Touch Pet Spa!



These are just a few random building I thought looked interesting…


Big Boy seems to be “big” with the folks up North!








You probably couldn’t have guessed that this is a storefront to a super-store like Wal-Mart.  This Meijer location has a pretty neat looking storefront that resembles “Main street.”





Though it may look different on the outside it isn’t so different on the inside.



Mr. Kenny, my brothers and took a look at a Bass Pro shop.




Obviously it isn’t as large or ornate as their World Headquarters in Springfield, MO, but this store was much larger and more decorated that the Bass Pro and Cabelas in St. Louis.




They had an indoor shooting range for handguns, shotguns and rifles and I’m sure that there was also an archery range somewhere.


They had an extensive fishing and boating section because of the close proximity of the Great Lakes.

IMG_1252Today was Deanna’s birthday so we celebrated with her that night.  Kate made a very good cheesecake, so we put some candles in it and sang happy birthday to Deanna.




Lydia and her “cousin” Bella sleeping on “Mister Kenny""



In a lot of ways Bella and Lydia are complete opposites (see below), but they got along together great and had fun playing with one another.  Here are just a few examples are on the ways that the two doges are opposites: Lydia is tall and slim has an under bite and is lightly colored, but Bella is short and stocky, has an overbite and is dark colored.



Sadly for Lydia she did have to take a B-A-T-H [inside joke] tonight.