Monday, October 5, 2015

Recap: 5th Annual Lumberjack Day!

Saturday, October 3 proved to be a quintessential fall day; blue skies with an occasional fluffy cloud, a light cool breeze, and a high temp of about 65 degrees. Sounds like the perfect day to celebrate noTTafarm by hosting our fifth annual "Lumberjack Day!" A smaller but mighty group of family and friends spent the day (or part of their day) enjoying the beautiful sunshine and a hotdog or two. Check out the fun!
The scene was set with the hanging of the banner from the wedding arch.
Just for fun, I had t-shirts printed with our new invitation artwork. 
This year was a first for my little pumpkin display. It's never too early for Halloween, right? 
Our first guest arrival was:  Bennett! 
Lumberjack Day would not be the same if the Kupzyk family was tardy. Bennett sported his moose hat and a plaid lumberjack jacket. Plus, he brought along his new baby brother! (keep scrolling for Elliot's picture)
My mommy with our niece Chelsie 
My folks missed last year's Lumberjack Day due to my dad's knee surgery. It sure was nice to have them back in action!
Kevin, Scott and Dad got the big fire in the former pond/landfill area started before lunch. The crew steadily added cedar branches to it throughout the afternoon.  
Our sister-in-law, LuAnn, created these adorable pretzel rod axes. It was her first experience with fondant, and these were a huge hit!.
Thanks, LuAnn! 
Scott's newest co-worker, Lauren, stopped by for a tour. She and her husband are remodeling an 100+-year old farmhouse in the Elkhorn area so she was inspired by Scott's design. Lauren surprised us with a horseshoe set which the kids immediately took a shine to. 
Thanks, Lauren!
Maybe those oversized marshmallows were a bad idea. Dad couldn't eat his s'more without making a mess!
Our beautiful friend, Megan, came all the way from Lincoln to join the fun.
She's the best! 
As promised, here's a picture of Bennett's new baby brother, Elliot. Sara, Kevin and the boys stayed and had fun all day ~ and everyone that needed some baby cuddle-time was rewarded.
A nature hike wouldn't be complete without a cute puppy! Luckily, Chelsie brought along Kiya who did a fine job as she walked along with Megan, Chelsie, and Sara (our nephew Joe's adorable girlfriend.) 
Hi, Joe! 
Yes, you are a very stylish lumberjack. Yes, your girlfriend is the cutest. Yes, I will pay you 25 cents per cedar tree harvested.
Here's our great niece, Allie! She is always full of smiles and silliness. 
 Here's Allie's little sister, Maggie! She is very excited to announce that she will be a big sister in April when Nick and Brooke's third baby is born. 
My big brother, Mark, and his big son, Nick, did a great job of cutting down cedar trees. Sadly for them, Scott decided that he wanted to save all the trunks . . . so all the lumberjacks had to cut all the cedar branches off and haul them to the burn pile on the trailer.  
The reward for hauling cedars is a free ride on the trailer! This parade had a appreciative group of spectators. No word from the Safety Council on the wisdom of this stunt. 
Not to be outdone, Joe did his share of cutting, hauling, and parading. 
Hi, Meredith!
11-year-olds are awesome, aren't they? I was so excited to welcome Leigh Anne and Meredith back to noTTafarm. Most of the following photos were taken with my camera by Meredith. She and Allie ran all over the place taking interesting shots. 
Sitting by the fire was a good idea!
Most of the crowd took a break in mid-afternoon to watch football. Sadly, both the Huskers and the KSU Wildcats lost in heartbreaking style. 
 Scott kept the fire going for his dad, Carl.
 File this under:  "why didn't we think of this before?"
Scott hauled a bunch of gals around on the trailer. Next year, we will definitely pile on some hay bales! This was a fun little adventure.
"Go Faster!" cried Allie.
Allie, Brooke, LuAnn and Maggie were all smiles on the trailer ride. 
 Our photographers, Meredith and Allie.
My beautiful bestie, Marie. 
My beautiful bestie, Leigh Anne. 
 We got a good view of the action as the trailer rolled by.
Bennett and Kevin carved a jack o'lantern! 
We had dinner on the patio. Pulled pork, baked beans, mac and cheese . . . but the most popular item was Marita's pecan pie for dessert!
Thanks, Mama! 
The evening ended with just a smidge more fun, thanks to Nick and the wagon. 
"Go faster!" cried Allie.

That's a wrap!
We hope you can join us again in 2016. Until then . . .
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Barn Door is Bibbers-Approved

While I was away from noTTafarm the weekend of September 19, Scott continued on with his quest to finish the new barn door. By the time I arrived home (after a spectacular weekend with a few sorority sisters,) the new hardware was up, the door was sliding, and Scott was ready to begin the next phase of construction: the cat door.

The new galvanized rail was attached to a new 1x8x8 from Scott's stockpile which was painted prior to attaching to the barn.
Detail shot of the hardware 
Now that the door slides freely, Scott moved on to the installation of the cat door. The kit came with a template and good instructions.
Bibbers, of course, had to supervise! This will be his own personal portal to the barn. Scott bought a "small" size door in order to hopefully thwart the effort of raccoons to enter.
Scott used a square to help mark where to cut a hole in the newly-hung door.
He used the oscillating saw on his Milwaukee M-12 to slice the old barn wood. That poor door lasted all these years just to get cut for a cat door. Sad!
Checking to see if the exterior frame fits.
Scott also had to cut a little notch in the white trim board to allow the frame to fit.
"Cousin It" happened by to help feed the plastic fasteners through the door assembly. (I like to throw in a little Addams Family humor once in a while.)
 With the door installed, only one test remained . . .
. . . helping Bibbers figure out how to use it! Scott held the magnetized flap open and gave Bibbs a little shove.
Here he comes! 
 Almost there!
Good job, Bibbers! 
The barn is more secure and looks pretty spiffy with the addition of the new door.  Great job, Scotty!
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Windows-Schmindows . . .Let's Fix a Door!

In addition to 15 windows of various stages of repair, the barn has multiple doors. Scott expanded the west door years ago to accommodate the mower (see details here: Article 2010/11/barn-door-rehab-no1). Since then, the main entry door has been begging for its turn in the spotlight. What better way to spend vacation days than by rehabbing a barn door?!
The south-facing entry door is on its original slider. The bottom is missing and there's no hardware. We've been "locking" the door with a bungee cord and some bricks wedged along the bottom.
The sliding rail is rusty and pitted, making it difficult for the pulley wheels to operate smoothly.
These wheels may have seen better days.
After Scott removed the door, Bibbers couldn't resist the urge to create his own sundeck.
Scott began laying out the new door structure on the driveway. He used pressure-treated lumber - the first new lumber he's purchased in ages. We planned to use the existing door's tongue-in-grove siding to create the panel of the new door thus protecting the integrity of the barn.
The structure was held together with L-brackets.
On the morning of the second project day, Scott changed his mind about the door's construction. He opted to build two identical frames of 1x4 lumber which would sandwich the old tongue-in-groove panels, holding them securely in place.
Rather than buy additional brackets needed to hold the structure together, Scott created his own out of some joist hangers of unknown origin. A little pounding, bending and twisting was all it took.
The L-brackets and house-made brackets work well together. Scott applied two coats of paint before moving on to the next step.
Since much of the door's original siding had deteriorated beyond use, Scott scrambled to find a suitable replacement. He searched his stockpile then shopped at Menards and Home Depot before giving up and coming home. In a moment of despair, he searched his stockpile again - this time, finding some leftover outhouse siding that fit the bill. Hooray!
Each piece was laid on the frame and marked for trimming.
The pieces from the barn door cover the bottom of the door while the outhouse pieces are up top.
Once the builder was happy with the layout, the second frame was placed on top . . . 
 . . . creating a Barn Door Sandwich. Scott used 2" screws to hold it all together (following an emergency trip to Home Depot to buy said screws.)
Scott tested the newly assembled door in its soon-to-be home.
The new rail hardware we purchased on Friday needs to be installed, and we need to figure out the best location for a kitty door. But with the sun setting on our vacation, the project completion will have to wait until evenings after work.
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!