Larry.s Creative Zone

Larry.s Creative Zone

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

The Daily Report.....


The hosta is on the south side of the house and it is warmer there. It is projecting its roots down through the hole that I dug below all of those rocks.  I think I put a spade full of soil in the hole to encourage its growth.

It is getting close to cobbler time with these stems getting large enough for eating. I still have three plantings of this from a previous owner.  I had dug out one of them to give away and stray roots have developed into a full plant again.

It got quiet out there where the carpenter was working in the afternoon.  We had heard the sounds of parts of our roof being removed and also the next layer of floor was glued and nailed down.  The reason it was quiet was the guy was unloading all the windows and door from their boxes. The door is going to allow us to go out on the deck. If the rain stays light to a sprinkle, we will see the shell of the sunroom going up today. The rain front seems to be just below us and I think that work can be done.

Randy, the carpenter, said the electricians are schedule to come on Friday so he will have to have the room done by Thursday. It is getting exciting.  If the coordination works out we could have the carpet down on next Monday. I have to work in the garage to get the one wall cleared of garage stuff so the electricians can work. I have an attic access to clear away also in the garage.



I shared this on my Photo a Day blog. I didn’t expect the steps to be so impressive. Having the deck made of cedar, it does make sense the steps would be made up of the same.  White railings will go on everything.

We are still on a baby watch.  It could be today or tomorrow. We are keeping our telephone lines clear and also check the internet mail often. Mom and dad plus two boys will have a new member in their family soon.

I mowed the backyard yesterday after the carpenter went home.  I am glad that I did as it was needing to be done. I mowed around the clutter of the work going on in the yard and did get most of it done. The lawn treatment people are waiting for it all to clear out so they can put down the treatment over the entire yard. I didn’t make it to the old place to get the yard done yesterday because I couldn’t get the truck out of the garage. I will go on Wednesday as it is to be a clear warm day then.  I will be plowing through with the mower the tall grass up there.  My mowing person from last year moved away over the winter.





I transplanted six old fashion peonies last fall and five out of six have survived. I would wish that they would bloom this year but I doubt they will.  You can sort of see them here in front of the shared garden between me and the neighbor. If they mature they should make a great row of shrub growth in front of the area.

My trial garden of all the transplanted iris should look good this year. I originally planned to move things out of the temporary garden area but that will have to wait for another year. The building that is going on right now is opening up new areas for garden spots.

I have household chores to do today so will be busy.  Our spring rains are spotty all day so I may get the front yard mowed today.

I wish everyone well today.  Thanks for stopping by today.

Monday, April 29, 2019

Monday’s Moments......


My wife added a new bird to her collection.  The expression of the face is an interesting expression. 

The red truck of our carpenter is back this Monday morning.  He is adding the steps now so the stairs can be used. That pile of wood and window parts are all gone now having used up all of the wood to make the deck. The boxed parts were moved to the back yard.




I think I counted eleven steps.  The design of our house with a walkout basement means that the first level of the house is a little higher to make the walkout basement work better. 











I have the guy store his tools inside of the basement door.  He had piled them all in a corner outside and I thought rain and thieves would cause some effect to them.  It speeds up his work with the time saved from moving tools back and forth up our hill. The one tool that he uses that amazes me is a drill that looks like a gun.  The power divide is at the top of a two foot rod and he can shoot screws into the deck wood with out leaning down.  The screws are fed into the rod and the screw goes in very quickly. By the time I finish this blog I bet he is done with the stairs. 




The leaves have come out thickly since I last took this photo. The red color does go away as the summer comes.  I am going to go to the old place and do some mowing of the tall grass.  I am kind of waiting to go as it needs to dry out. The whole state did get rain and it is cool this morning.  It takes awhile to dry when it is cold.  We are suppose to get up to 64 degrees F. today. We needed the rain and we will get more April showers durning the last day of April. 

Thanks for stopping by today.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Sunday with Eventual Sun.......


It got below freezing last night and this morning it looks like this.  Taken from the new deck there is no rain in sight for the entire day.

I brought the big rock to this place from the old place.  I planted hosts around the rocks and the three of them are starting on their second year now. One is being the rock but I promise you that it is there. I had to dig down through that rock layer to get to some soil.  I also dump soil in to help get the hosta plants growing.
The New England bluebells are looking better but the weather has been too cold for them to bloom out completely.
The mostly white buds end up looking like this when they open up.  The rembrandt tulip does look like some one has painted them with a paint brush and paint.

The carpenter will be back tomorrow unless it rains too much.
I would never had imagined that we would end up with a veranda.  The space under the sunroom area will always be protected from the weather. The poles are not evenly spaced but maybe some trellis will vines will help to fix that.  It is Sunday and we are getting sunshine this afternoon. I hope everyone is having a great afternoon.  Thanks for stopping by today.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Saturday Stuff.......


My creeping phlox is doing well.  I have two plantings of it and it looks great.  The rains may make it look better.  The grape hyacinth has sure bloomed for a long time.


The rembrandt tulips are looking good.  They are not a big tulip like a hybrid but they put out great color.
The tulips are planted in the peony bed.  They don’t seem to be to striking but it is fun to see them out there. Buttercups and one other ground cover is also in this bed.  I have grass to dig out of the area too.  The flowers in the front flower bed are all returning.  I have sedums, globe allium, aster and coneflowers coming up.


I did find the variety name for these tulips.  I bought them a Menards but I see you can find peony tulips on the internet. There are other specially varieties on the internet when you look them up.  I remember parrot tulips when I was a kid on the farm and I do want to get some of them as a special thing in the garden.



Happiness is having a cedar deck.  The guy installed it all yesterday including the risers for the steps. It will be a nice smaller deck for grilling and a couple of lounge chairs. The notch you see is where the steps go down. I am assuming he needed to get the deck and stairs done so they can carry the roof materials up to this level for the sunroom roof.

 We have been out walking around on these two floors.  It is a little scary to go to the edge so we are careful. Our carpenter guy will be back on Monday to finish the stairs and then who know what is next.  He has installed a hundred or more of these things so he knows the procedure and process.


We are going to have fun deciding the uses of our new covered shelter under the sunroom. It is a twelve by sixteen foot space that will be out of the rain and snow.  I know I can set up potting bench and I will put my potter’s wheel under there. I think everything needs to be finish and our carpenter guy needs to go away and then we can decide things.


Spring is a great season in Iowa and the blooms never last long enough.  The grass is going to be growing lush and thick for a while. We are off to the bookstore this morning and we will have sunshine for most of the day. Thanks for stopping by today.

Friday, April 26, 2019

Friday’s Final Report......


The flowering trees are at their prime right now with their blooms. It is so nice to see them in this stage. Most of the year they are not blooming so the week of blooms makes the place look great.

I have a second clump of creeping phlox that doesn’t look so good.  It rained lightly for a while in the afternoon.  We really did need the rain to help the grass grow and the flowers too.  I don’t think farmers have planted yet but some will start soon.  We have frost or freezing weather over the weekend.
A ten by twelve deck is built to the south of the sunroom.  I am glad it is going to be all at the same level.  Some of their models show a step down from the sunroom to the deck. This looks like a mess but it keeps looking better as he keeps adding boards. The small square in the foreground is the landing that we will walk on before we go down the stairs.
Looking out from below of the addition shows we will have a good size deck and nice shade underneath the sunroom. Today the joists for the deck are already on and I bet the cedar boards will go on soon.  I am curious to see if he puts on the steps before he puts down the floor. I am thinking he has to get the deck and stairs to help the crew that comes in to put on the sunroom roof. They will have to carry up the one story to get all of the supplies needed.

Right now I think the posts make it look like a Roman structure. Maybe it will look like a southern plantation. It definitely is going to make the plain back view look a lot more fancy. I am waiting to see what it looks like when it is done before I think about landscaping.  I have seen a lot of examples from the company brochure or computer site that shows many ways people have landscaped the new additions.



The four preformed floor panels were put in place in less than twenty minutes. They were all attached with screws all around the edge of them all.  I think a mother subfloor will go on top of it all to make it very sturdy. The owners were out on it last night looking over things. No walls makes it a little scary.

With the deck being finished the pile of cedar boards will be used up and this pile will be pretty much gone. The carpenter gets to park in the drive and I put my car on the curb in the morning. Our winding street can hand the parking but it isn’t so good with the curve just down the hill. There already is a big tool trailer sitting out there along the street.

We have no new grand baby as of today.  It could be any time now. Our youngest grandson has a hairline fracture in his leg now.  He is wearing a boot and I hope that heals quickly. It adds a little bit of complication to things.

It is a weekend of bad weather for us.  We get spring rains and it sounds like we have a rough day of storms tomorrow.  We are cold enough though that the Iowa-Minnesota border is going to get snow. I wish you all well for today. Thanks for checking in today.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Thursday’s Update.....


We do have two different sunroom stores in our area.  One is in our town that sells sunrooms and builds on screened in summer rooms. The one business we chose  use is about ten miles away from here.  They have been around for many years and have advertised on a local radio station and television networks continually.  Midwest Construction has two sites in Iowa. The northern one has the factory where they make all of the parts that they use to make a sunroom. One can go to the place and walk through two different display models attached to their business. They sell windows and siding too but they are most known for their sunrooms.

One big truck comes from the factory and all of the pieces of the puzzle are unloaded in the yard everywhere. I suspect the head boss did buy his initial framework wood for the beginning of the project at Menards. The head carpenter has everything out there, to pick out what he needs.  As he has worked the past few days the piles are being used up and the yard is cleared. The cedar planking is also out there for the eventually built deck and all the windows are leaning against the house.
The unloading of the truck took place while we were gone yesterday.  You can see the parts are everywhere.

The floor is constructed in the factory with two by six joists and foam insulation sandwiched together. The top and bottom plywood is glued down and the four you see here will make up the entire floor. Four foot by twelve floor panels, that were all put into place in less than fifteen minutes.


The frame work is held up with six inch square posts. Once the floor is in place it will be skirted with large twelve by four inch board pieces.  As I write this the floor is in and those skirting boards are being put into place.

One guy has put most all of this together and now today he has a helper to do lifting and attaching of the floor pieces and trim. It is suppose to rain late afternoon but they will get a lot done until then.

On the garden scene, I have phlox starting to bloom.  I had forgot that I had them.  I think this is the creeping variety. It did bloom last year but I just didn’t remember. There are a lot of blooms that haven’t opened yet.

The tulips that bloom more like roses are all out now.  The petals are fragile and they won’t hang around for very long.

My wife sold a painting so I have a job to do.  I need to clear my worktable and cut the mats for it. As the whole thing is assembled the shipping box will need to be found or constructed.  We probably won’t ship it out until Friday.

We are tied down here at home today with workers attaching things to our house.  We sneak peeks once in a while as things develop but we don’t think we should leave today.   I hope all is well with everyone out there.  Thanks for stopping by today.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Wednesday


This changed quickly as the one person preceded to cut the deck and all of its supports apart and put them in his truck.

Looking down through our dining room window you can see my old potters wheel, the garden shed, and the last of the deck.

Same shot with a different window view.  It has been a noisy process but it is now all gone.

Last night's view is a bleak looking one. We had to leave to take the car for an oil change and when we returned everything was done and cleaned up for today’s work. I was told that a large crew will be here today to start assembling things. A board that will support the floor is being drilled onto the house right now.

On a side note, I found out that they stopped making Buick Lacrosse cars for forever.  I don’t like SUV vehicles and I really don’t know what I will ever buy again now. I just like cars. My Buick has such low mileage that maybe I can just drive it for forever.
I am thinking that this looks a lot more serious with some hefty lumber in the back yard.

Another load is ready to be used in the front drive.

Projecting poles will be raise to the right height to support the outside edge of the room.  The young boys did a good job getting them all screwed into the ground.


My peony-like tulips are blooming right now. They are great looking flowers once the do finally get all unfolded.  In certain light conditions they do have a pink color.  The camera didn’t pick that up here in this photo.



This photo shows this one being pink in color.  We have appointments today and will be out and about for a while. The day is cool but it is going to warm up.  I appreciate you stopping by today.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Deck Day.....


Our flowering trees are looking good again this spring. We had a rain that should help them to bloom more.

I research these last year and they are  not the pear variety.  They are an small apple variety that hands on the tree in the summer for birds to eat.  Our neighborhood has broken the rules and removed their suggested trees when they bought their property.  One of the streets a few blocks over is still covered all along the street for many blocks. Our street has maybe less than a dozen as they have replaced them with other varieties.
It rained yesterday so they didn’t show up to remove our deck.  But today at eight in the morning they were ready to go.  They also brought their crew that puts in steel posts for the deck and sunroom.
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The two man crew are drilling 10 foot posted into the ground.  The machine does a good job and doesn’t destroy the grass.  The two guys running the machine look like they are 14 years old but I do think they might be close to 20 years old.
The poles have this auger on the end that helps the pole be dug into the ground. I am assuming the machine that does all the work also helps to get it vertically in the ground. While that crew works at putting them in, the crew boss is taking the deck apart by cutting it apart.

Cutting it up into pieces really makes sense as it is easier to tote out of here. I assume the young drilling people will help him to carry them up our hill to the trailer.  I haven’t mentioned that it is a noisy process as they cut the thing into chunks.
The deck is being cut into strips so it can be removed one joist at a time with small parts of the deck still attached. I am a recycle person so it hurts to see nothing will be saved.



We are capturing glimpse of the work as the drilling guys put in the poles. One guy seems to be the brains of the process and the other is watching most of the time.




I will stop for today as I need to get the blog posted.  You know that I will keep you up to date on the work. I have been good and left everyone alone.  I met the boss when he started and then walked away.  It will be an eventful day and we will be glad to get this job done today.  Thank you for stopping in today.