Pennsylvania Limestone Farmhouse Renovations to an 1863 farmhouse built of limestone

June 6, 2010


Filed under: Interior — Duane Diefenbach @ 9:20 pm

For 4 months or so we have walked through hanging plastic to go from the old house to the new to try and minimize dust (and heat loss). Today we decided any future dust would be minimal so we removed all plastic draperies…

Here’s what it looks like… rather strange.

Constant Interruptions

Filed under: Cow Corral,Interior — Duane Diefenbach @ 5:49 pm

On Friday the drywall guys completed their work! That meant that I figured we could prime everything and paint the ceilings.  If so, on Monday I could call the heating guys and electricians and schedule them to complete their work. A great plan but it ultimately failed.

Saturday I started by vacuuming – the drywall guys did a  good job but I went over everything to get it spotless. Done by 11 am.  Lisa promised to help but first she had to take Molly to work (Molly works at a local greenhouse) so when she returned Lisa started painting the corners where the roller couldn’t reach.  But then she had to pick up Molly, then take her shopping, and then to Penns Valley to a tractor show where she was camping overnight with a friend.  So about 3 pm Lisa was back helping me. But I did manage to prime all the wallboard downstairs except I ran out of paint after I finished Ethan’s bedroom.  So much for lots of progress – I was hoping I could have started on applying ceiling paint.

Fortunately, the drywall guys left their scaffolding that made painting the master bedroom so much easier

But  in all fairness (regarding my complaints about lack of progress and lack of help), my lower back, arms, and neck were aching after all the painting that I did.

Saturday night I took 2 ibuprofen at bedtime. Sunday started out pretty good. By 7 am I was cleaning up the last of the joint compound buckets (on a farm you always need a 5 gallon bucket to feed or water something/somebody).  Even though we prefer to patronize our local hardware store, they don’t open until 10 am on Sunday so it was more time efficient (but not energy efficient) to drive to State College and buy more paint at a big box store. Consequently, by 9 am I was working on finishing priming the upstairs.  Life was good (even though my neck and back were still a little sore).

But that didn’t last.  It got dark. The rain came. Then the WIND came.  But we ran around and closed all the windows, finished the painting, and had lunch.

My mistake was to look out the window towards the cow pasture. Multiple trees were down across the fence right where our steers always lie down in the afternoon to get out of the sun! Change of plans – no more painting. Was there a steer under all those trees?

Ethan and I loaded up the truck and tractor with chainsaws and equipment to check out the damage. No moaning steers but maybe there was a dead one under there. So while I started clearing the limbs…

Ethan took the truck and drove around the pasture to count steers and check for downed trees on the fence. Ten minutes later his report was that all the boys were accounted for but two more  cherry trees across the fence! In case you don’t know, if cattle eat the leaves of a cherry tree it can kill them. So priority was to clean up the cherry trees up in the pasture closest to the steers.

Once that was done we returned to the pine tree (that also took out a black cherry and box elder) and started cutting and chipping. While working we saw Bill try and sneak home after work – I called him and told him to come down and help keep his steers from getting out.

Just as we were finishing up the pine tree Lisa sent Ethan up to check the one section of fence you can’t drive along with a vehicle. He returned to inform us that ANOTHER tree was down across the fence. That was too much. We (Bill, Lisa, and I – sorry Ethan) stopped and had a beer. But even after last tree on the fence was cleared we still had to remove our downed apple tree by the bridge. By this time, all we had energy for was to cut it off at the stump, chain it to the tractor, and pull it out of the way

So after all this the ceilings in the house still need to be painted. And where was Molly the whole time? Driving a tractor in the parade at the Penns Cave Tractor Show. Life is good (for some of us).

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