Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Cabin Weekend Just For the Record

I have an hour here to get this posting accomplished. I have a batch of pictures, and one or two pieces of scribbling. It won't be a beautiful post. It isn't meant to be, either. I just need to get it here for the scrapbook part of this blog.
Please, if you aren't interested in a mishmash of cabin living, stove installation, cats, the north woods, winter, board games, friends, and firewood, this posting isn't for you. Click to a more organized story.
There! You've been warned!
I turned these roses Friday morning. Which is to say that I hung them upside down to dry on an upstairs curtain. Another successful Wal-mart bouquet of roses to enhance our home decor for months to come.
The dear old Jeep is again functional and road worthy. We loaded it with our luggage, food, projects and the hitch haul box, heavy with a stove to install and headed north, late Friday evening. After leaving the main road, we got to the cabin by putting chains on the back tires and then spinning and slewing along through two feet of sugary, fluffy snow. Elv safely ushered our flailing presence through the corridor of tall spruces and brush. It was deeply satisfying and rewarding to land at the front door of the cabin. It would have been a crying shame to have had to sled it all in the last half mile, wouldn’t it?
 We unloaded and got the cookstove fire going for heat. Amy and I fixed beds with clean sheets and piles of blankets by lamp light, first thing. Then while the rest of us hurried off to bed where it was possible to actually get warm, Elv puttered about his stove project till 1:30 in the morning. He was too excited about it to sleep, I guess.

  Our new generator lives in this little shelter next to the outhouse for now. When we are using it, that is. Elv carefully stores it inside the cabin otherwise. It  purrs quietly giving us electricity for hours without ever complaining.    
Grandpa Elv received a letter from grandson Jube.
    He enjoyed your letter so much, Jube. We figured out that you thought of it while you were eating breakfast one morning from the pictures you drew. Your diagram of the volcano was rather interesting, as well as your under water drawings. 
   
 If you know what you are looking for, you can see that two guys are enjoying the "fireplace" on a very cold morning in Minnesota.
The stove is a nice addition to our little cabin in the north woods. We’ve been heating and cooking with a cookstove during our short weekend stays until now. The cookstove works well for cooking and does eventually warm the whole area downstairs and even the sleeping rooms overhead. But having a fireplace (wood stove with glass in the door/screen) facing our comfy couches and stuffed chairs is nicer.
            The two stoves stand back to back in the middle of our open plan space of kitchen, dining, and sitting room areas. The cookstove serves the kitchen side, the heating stove the living room side of things. It is a good arrangement even though the instruction manuals say that the shared chimney idea is a poor one. We’re proving that it can be done, safely and conveniently. It saves expensive pipe and space. Right now, the two stoves stand on raw cement board with nothing decorative or finished about it.The stove pipes, like two arms of an octopus reach from stoves to the ceiling, black and curved at odd angles.
There is a plan to have a hearth on the living room side of field stone or brick that starts at the front of the stove on the floor, spans the space to the wall behind the stove, and up the wall to the mantel piece somewhere just above the highest part of the cookstove. And a hearth for a nestling space for the cookstove, as well, on the other side. The hearths back to back should form one wall with in which the two pipes will be merged into the one chimney. Should be a piece of cake. We've been thinking this over for a long time.
           
Brad and Tim decided to go snowshoeing on Monday morning. It was cold, hard work and Brad came back quite satisfied with sitting by the fire for awhile. 
We have been playing Catan lately when we have a free evening. It has been a long time coming; but this old lady finally figured that she might as well learn how to play. I enjoy playing games around the coffee table with my family, and if they won't play scrabble; then I am going to have to be content with Catan. I'm still trying to figure out how much of winning is luck and how much is skill. I haven't had much of either commodity to date.
Sunday, after church, this happy group of people played Monopoly. It took hours, literally, till it was down to Elv and Tim and Gideon. Tim made the mistake of hitting Elv's boardwalk twice. Elv won the game again. He says that that Tim knows how to play the game well. High praise there, Tim.
Meet Mr. Collins. Yes, the name comes from that genteel personage in Pride and Prejudice. Glad you asked. He presided over our scrapbooking from the heights of Susan's paper files.

Yes, right there behind her left shoulder. She will not be happy that I put this picture here, but how else am I gonna get her back for it?!
Actually, Mr. Collins behaves himself just fine if you don't mind cats. Which I don't, as long as they're in her house, and not in mine.  We scrapbooked for hours together over the weekend. You won't know what that means unless I tell you that it involves long tables set up and our equipment: computers and cricuts,and papers and tools all spread out upon them.With the girls' projects added in we have quite an array. We have visit time and snacks and laughter not to mention the results of our efforts in the end.

I read Myra Scovel's Chinese Ginger Jars over the weekend, as well. I had started Mom Graber's copy when we were down there but left hers there knowing I had my own at the cabin. Scovel's writing prowess is part of the attraction for me, but so is her story of raising a family and being her doctor husband's help suitable for him.  They were there in China during WWII when the Communists took over. Her stories are full of the miracles of Jesus in their extraordinary lives during those days. 

Here you go, Rosie. I know you want to see this. Hope it helps. I also wish to post these pictures because it's our record. All the unfinished splendor thereof for my blogworld to see. Nothing to be proud of, really. But we love this spot and are enjoying the challenge of the journey of doing the finish work. 






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