Sunday, March 20, 2016

So Many Great Projects!

With the roofs on the 4 newest homes at Elderberry it is really starting to look like a sweet little village.  Construction has now started on the last two homes along the northern edge of the property, and we hope that construction on the final 4 homes on the southern side will begin in June.

Even though there are only six homes occupied right now, there are a lot of members doing a lot of projects, coming to the community often to work and play.  Three of the biggest projects are the spring gardens, renovation of an old barn to a wood shop, and renovation of the original log cabin on the property.  In addition, we are continuing to work on improving our paths and we are working slowly to remove rocks from Bella Vista (a piece of property owned jointly with Potluck Community Farm) so that we can regularly mow and continue to enjoy the lovely view.

The spring weather has been stunning, and we are planning our second annual weenie roast for April 3rd.  Visitors are welcome to come out that day for a tour and the weenie roast.  Call us ahead if you plan to come so that we can provide details.

Above, Cheryl is helping Richard with renovation of the old barn to a wood shop .  Below, Pat, Richard, Meg and Cheryl putting up new walls.  The walls will eventually be covered with the original barn siding.

Vonda and Meg weeding the elderberries

 Joan and Rosemarie clearing out one of the old barns to use for firewood storage.  I wish I had a "before" photo!  Karolyn helped as well!

 The gardeners are at it - planting a much-expanded garden this year
 Mary, Meg and Dick working on paths

 Vonda, Joyce and Joan hanging out at Vonda's house, which she and her hubby Cecil are building themselves

 Tony, Vonda and Pat cleaning up the hand-hewn logs to restore the old log cabin

 Dick and Joyce (above) and Mary and Meg (below) working on paths
 Bella Vista
 We are picking up as many rocks as we can!  Where there are rocks that are too large to move, we are making cairns so that the bush hog does not accidentally hit one.

 Marj, Jim, Cathy, Dave and Mary - We're ROCKIN'!

 Dave, Dick, Marj, Cathy and Jim - taking a break from the rocks (above) and watching Phil finish up mowing with the tractor (below)

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Renovating the Original Log Cabin

When we bought the Elderberry property, it included several old barns and two old houses.  The houses looked pretty tumble-down and we assumed we would just have to take them down. But when we looked into the original house on the property we found that it was a hand-hewn log cabin.  And the logs were in really good condition.  So we tore off two of the rotting additions to the little cabin and made plans to renovate it ... someday.

Well, today was finally the first of the "somedays".  While much of the cabin was good, the floor was totally rotted.  Working with a carpenter who we love (Tony Richardson, who also helped us build our common house), we tore out the rotted floor, jacked up parts of the house that were sagging, and put in a new subfloor.  We also worked on the logs on one of the exterior walls, removing crumbling chinking and loose bark.

Since Tony is from out of town and was staying overnight, it was also a great excuse to have a dinner together!

 David Thompson (a neighbor from a few miles away who is also an Elderberry satellite member), Tony and Dick clear out the rotted log joists.

 Tony cuts around the old stairway

 Kelly and Glaeshia.  Kelly always looks after workers.  She brought out water for Tony's dog and brought the workers some pound cake for a morning snack.  Thanks Kell!!

 Dick working to remove old chinking from the logs

 David cutting joists

 Rosemarie gathering the eggs!  The chickens got out today but Tony's dog Spike wasn't fazed by them!

 Dinner together.... Anne (made some killer chocolate brownies), Carl, Jim and Tony

 Mike (made a super delicious almond cake) and Meg

 David and Dick helping themselves to a tasty shrimp and pasta dish

 David and Meg
 Joan and Mike
 Some of the folks having dinner

 Day 2 - Joists are in!
 Work on the exterior... Tony, Vonda and Pat

Mary and Vonda