The rebirth of a country school

Month: August 2014

Lessons – what we learned this week.

As school gets started for the kids around the area, I find we learn all sorts of lessons here as well.  After our traditional stops at the big three – Menards, Cub Foods, and Home Depot (big thanks to Bill and Jenny!!!!!) we headed north.

Lesson 1.  While our founding fathers did a bang up job clearing the land, it is not a strength of mine – even with power tools.  Slowly but surely I’m clearing out overgrowth and undergrowth.  I was fortunate to not run across any bears, although I don’t know if I can credit it to the protection of these two (big black lumps = “guard dogs”.)

0823141317Lesson 2.  3′ x 6′ windows are just as good as 6′ x 3′ windows when you get them cheap off of Craigslist (I made a plea to a famous Minnesota based window company to help, but to no avail, so we had to improvise).  These look fantastic compared to the plywood and styrofoam motif and will seal out the elements (and racoons) for now.



Three down, three to go.  We have two, still searching for the last one.  They won’t all match – except for the lack of plywood on them – but they will do the trick for now.



At night, you can now see in to the old ceilings.  Love it!

0823142013Lesson 3.  Wild plums are tasty, but it’s going to take a lot of these to make a pie. These came off the tree by the house and are about the size of large grapes.



Lesson 4.  Ponds are fickle, enjoy them while you can.  Through this clearing was the pond.  Now, well, not so much.0823141220a


A friend of ours discovered artwork of the school!  Artwork by Mike Jacobs.


Pears and Bears and a Missing Tree

Every have one of those weekends where you have tons to do, you actually feel like you were busy all weekend, but in the end, it’s just a scattered bit of things you’ve accomplished?  That was the last few days at the schoolhouse.  We brought a crew with us – Kevin’s kids – for camping…

The crew at the fire…and immediately got to work.  The boys worked on creating a sleeping oasis, the girls started in on some refreshing of the paint jobs.







After being away for a few weeks, the yard needed some attention, but we found we have rasberries! (ok, maybe we only have 1 raspberry) and a pear tree!



…and a missing tree….   0803140810d

gone without a trace.  Anyone finding a misplaced pine tree, about 20 ft tall, let us know.

On Sunday, we began some structural work to shore up the bell tower, starting in the basement.  Here’s where they jackhammered out the old concrete for a new footing.









Last but not least, and no picture to back it up, but while out traversing the Barrens, we saw a black bear.  He was moving too fast to snap a picture, but we are looking forward to doing that someday…hopefully from the Inside of the schoolhouse.



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