Operation: Fix This House!

Operation: Fix This House!
Our adventures in fixing up a fixer-upper

Confessions of an Antibride

Confessions of an Antibride
Snarky Commentary on Wedding Planning

Pink Dog Cooks

Pink Dog Cooks
Sort of.


And other Crafting Goodness

There's no turning back now.

Friday, June 12, 2009

As if we would have ever considered that!

I worked a half day today and then went to Portland. My dermatologist was able to fit me in a week early. I had a bit of freckle removed. For those of you who care, it went smashingly.

Whilst I was gone, MacGyver was home making quick work of tearing the rest of the garage down!

See? All gone!! And we met one of our neighbors who (as we discovered today) has lived in the house for about 50 years. Nothing like waiting 2 1/2 years to meet the neighbors. He is a super nice guy too. Almost makes up for his dog who likes to wander over and poo in our yard. He came over to chat while we were outside. Probably wondering what the hell we've been doing the last few days! We're making quite a mess back there.

Now comes the icky clean up work. I've been given strict instructions by the doc not to lift more than 5 pounds for a week. Pity too. I could be out there helping...


Thursday, June 11, 2009

I created a panoramic photo-collage-type image using Windows Live. Brilliant download, by the way.

This is my way of making a tribute to this mammoth tree I have both learned to love and loathe.

And this, boys and girls, is how we do it

I came home from work today and found MacGyver working on truckload number three of garage debris. Looks like I made it in time for the exciting parts!

I like the way the tree looks looking up through the roof of the garage.

MacGyver busted out the sawzall to cut the sides of the garage so the front could come off.

This next part is the truly exhilarating bit. I took a video for full effect.

Pretty awesome, huh? Yeah, I thought so too.

Yeah, still cool.

MacGyver is cutting back the sides little by little so the whole thing doesn't implode on itself. (Yes, Bryan, that's the definition of implode.)

Now the garage is a much smaller, narrower version of its former self. More to come! If we're lucky the garage will be down by tomorrow night!

Back at it

After El Stinko blew up last week, demo on the garage was temporarily postponed. We were not so easily thwarted. El Stinko was back up and running yesterday and Garage Removal 2009 was back on track.

By the time I came home for lunch, MacGyver had already been to the dump once and was working on removing the rest of the roof

I think this is a nice shot of the bigger picture here. MacGyver perched precariously on what is left of the roof of the (very unsafe) garage, with the reason we're tearing it down looming over the top of him.

I didn't take a video of this part, but this picture was taken while MacGyver was demonstrating how many feet he could sway the whole structure back and forth, while sitting on top of it. He thought it was hilarious. I just kept thinking, "you do not have Aflac!!!"

This is a nice view from inside what is left of the basement. As evil as that tree is, I'll admit it is beautiful. And I'm going to miss it.

For emphasis

Thursday, June 4, 2009

This is a video I took a few years ago during a windstorm.

I assure you it's much more dramatic than it appears in the video.

Demolition Day...sort of

Today MacGyver planned to dismantle the garage/lean-to/health hazard/outbuilding that actually decreased the value of our home during the last appraisal.

He spent about 2 hours busting out the roof of the garage and loaded up El Stinko (our old '72 Dodge Truck) to go to the dump. Apparently El Stinko had other plans and decided to blow up at precisely that moment.

Okay "blow up" might be a bit of an exaggeration, but it won't start. Which means no dump run. Which means the garage is not coming down. Which means the tree can't come down. And if the tree doesn't come down, there will most certainly be some sort of coup de etat launched by our Walnut Tree, which is unceremoniously trying to take us out. So you see, it is absolutely imperative that this tree comes down. Like yesterday.

Here is a picture of the demolition so far.

Here is a photo of El Stinko, currently comatose in the middle of the driveway.

The Beginning

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

This will be the first of many (not too many, I hope) posts about our impending backyard transformation.

Those of you who have been to our house (or have been within a sixty five mile radius of Tillamook) have seen the absolutely enormous Black Walnut tree growing in our absolutely not enormous backyard.

Here are a few pictures of this voluminous deciduous.

And one more, compliments of Google Maps.

I should preface the following with this disclaimer: I heart this tree. It was one of my favorite attributes to this house when we were looking at buying it. It's just too big. It needs to be in the middle of a giant field somewhere with wildflowers all around and squirrels taking up residence. If I could make that happen I truly would.

That having been said, this is no ordinary walnut tree. This particular tree undergoes an interesting metamorphosis every year around the end of fall, and becomes a giant, walnut-missile launching machine. These walnuts are extremely hazardous! They leave dents in the cars where they land. I'm not even going to begin to describe the agony that is caused by getting nailed on the head with one of these suckers. Seriously, the government should look into this for future warfare weaponry. They could classify it as Green Weapons of Mass Destruction. They could probably get a nice tax write off for it.

The other issue, besides the lethal walnut-chucking behavior of this tree, is that it is extremely windy in Tillamook. A few years ago we had a windstorm that broke the wind-o-meter at 124mph. This type of gusty wind breaks the branches of the tree (branches, mind you, that span over four properties on our block, and hang over the wires that deliver cable and power to all those properties, threatening nightmarish conditions every time a breeze passes through.) One year, a fallen branch took out the passenger side of MacGyver's car. Another time I came out to walk the dogs and found a 10 foot branch resting on the back of my car. Miraculously it missed it enough not to cause any damage.

I'm starting to think this tree wants to kill us.

After getting some helpful information from my parents, and doing some of our own research we discovered black walnut trees are coveted for the beautiful wood they produce. I'm all about recycling and planting trees, even serial killer ones. So I'd rather the wood was used for something useful rather than being burned or going to a landfill. We started calling around asking tree cutting people if anyone wanted to come take a look at our murderous beast.

We found a great company, JX3Hardwoods, right here in town that harvests high quality hardwood trees and makes wonderful things out of the wood. Here's the best part: are you ready? They are going to pay us to remove our tree. So they're removing our tree, taking the wood away, and paying us to do it. Yes, this is for real. No, we didn't tell them the tree is secretly plotting our demise as we speak.

Due to our ever booming economy, things have moved rather slowly (we made the original agreement in October); however, I'm happy to report that this potential assassin of a walnut tree will fire it's last missile sometime in July (fingers, toes, and eyes crossed anyway).

And to all you Tree-Hugging Hippies out there, yes, we plan to plant a new tree in its place. Something smaller. That does not bear round, smallish, concrete ammunition and require the property's occupants to carry extra health insurance. Maybe a nice soft lilac bush. Or a marshmallow plant...


2009 ·Pink Dog Blog by TNB