Weekend work: cold, wet and productive

Saturday dawned cold and dreary. We had to pull on jackets and scarves before heading out to collect a pile of scrap metal from a junk heap in the far reaches of our property. Once that was delivered, we headed down to the treefort (where the scrap metal will be used as siding).
Boy driving lawn tractor

Fitting corner pieces to the upper walls was the order of the day.
Installing walls to a handmade, recycled treehouse
With the biting wind, it was a good day to pretend to be a little furry creature in a dry corner of the treefort.
Young child pretending to be a gerbil
A bit of measuring at the rear of the treefort was needed before we could head back up to the house.
Treefort construction with recycled windows and building materials
We had to check a few angles too.
Checking wall angle on a homemade treefort
Back up at the house it was time for a hot, late lunch/early supper.
Hot meal on the stovetop: fried eggs, shakshouka, potatoes
My take on shakshouka, full of tomatoes, parsley and peppers from our garden, as well as a local onion – an end of summer meal on a day that felt more like late fall.
Even though the house was perfectly toasty, the day demanded the first fire of the season in the woodstove.
Fire burning in the Esse Ironheart
We rewarded ourselves with a screening of the WWII film Desert Rats and then took a peek at the incredible sunset (the funny pink rectilinear shape reminds me that I still haven’t written anything directly about our solar panels – they are here, but not yet connected).
Pink sunset in Eastern Ontario
Sunday wasn’t much fairer, but I started the day by canning a delicious batch of Green Tomato and Apple Chutney (we’ve got lots of unripe tomatoes too!), my first effort at this kind of preserving. My heart felt good as I heard every jar lid make its “ping!” sound one after the other.

We fit in some more work on the treefort and my husband made good progress on his latest project: a burn barrel created to work like a wood gasifier (a super efficient way to burn wood and its gases, reducing smoke and harmful gases). Like the treefort, this is another nearly 100% recycled project. The outer barrel is a repurposed barrel from an ancient potato planter that we inherited when we bought our land. The smaller inner barrel was traded for the hydraulics on the same potato planter with a neighbour. Our youngest was thrilled to be asked to climb inside to help with fastening the two barrels together at the base.
Boy sitting in a barrel
Fastening two recycled barrels one inside the other to make a large wood gasifier
There is still chard and kale producing in the front bed, but the rear garden is done for now, so garden transition is also underway. But that’s another post.

5 thoughts on “Weekend work: cold, wet and productive

    1. It must be great to get your teeth into being back at school – good for you! I must say, the more we use the Ironheart, the more we feel incredibly lucky to have stumbled upon it. We’re planning to try to forego heating with natural gas at all this year and just maintain the house with the Ironheart. We’re able to keep our entire house warm on very, very little wood. I’ll definitely be blogging about it. Would love to learn more about your studies!

    1. Absolutely. We’ll plan to post the instructions for how he did it in the next few days. Feel free to email me at df AT wuppenif.com if you’d like to communicate directly (I’m just getting going with that address, but will check it!).

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