Thursday, August 27, 2015

August 2015


A quiet year. Tommie and Cortney were up for a week and then Bob, the dogs, and I stayed another 5 days or so.

We learned pretty quickly that the roof was leaking -- at the chimney and above the laundry room. Tommie spent a little while on the roof with a product that was sprayed on. It worked really well!

Not many blueberries this year -- I'm wondering if there was a late frost. We didn't bother trying to pick any -- there weren't any at the Farmers' Market in Liskeard so we knew it wasn't going to happen.

The temperatures were lovely. We arrived to a warm day but it was never too warm after that. There was a lot of rain -- way more than predicted.

Before we came up, Bob had been working pretty hard to redo the outside water shut-off valve. It has been horrible try to turn it on and off each year. One year we were delayed almost an hour going home.... just trying to get the tool onto the value and turn it off.
So he came up with a larger valve out of PVC -- he put it all together beforehand and installed it once we were here. The installation was delayed due to the rain, and then once the ground was dug up he discovered that it was different than he remembered. It took an extra day (without water!) to get the new supplies and put them together, but in the end he was successful! It will be a joy to use the new tool this year.....

Heather, 8/27/15

Friday, August 17, 2012

Into the Future

So much about the charm of this cabin comes from its past. The nearly 100-year-old log cabin structure, the charming, cozy decor from the Auntie. But, as useful as it was for many decades, the little GE apartment-sized washing machine had washed its last load and needed to be replaced. Since we rarely (never) used the dryer, it seemed logical to replace the two.

We opted for a used washer/dryer combo and after getting one sold out from under us by a Craig's List seller, purchased a lovely little rebuilt unit from an appliance shop in Center Line. We didn't realize it, but because it was used, there was no duty to pay at the border. She just waved us on!

It took Bob several days to install it. First he had to wire a 220 plug. There was some worry about the cabin not having the capacity, but after we talked to the engineer from the township we realized that the water heater and range were already running on 220. It was Bob's first attempt at something like this and he was completely successful. (No electrical fires.)

Next he had to plumb the machine, which required several more trips into New Liskeard, more $$, and another learning curve. But he prevailed and the washer/dryer was up and running.

It was such a pleasure to put in a load and walk away. The little GE washer was a great appliance in its day, but when you did the washing, you devoted an entire day to that. Everything was hands-on.  The new one is just a slightly smaller version of a home washer. So much less work. And it completely rinses the soap out of the clothing! The dryer is quick -- I checked it about 2/3 of the way through its first cycle and everything was dry and sweet smelling.

I washed everything in no time, and then moved on to fabric around the cabin. Most of the curtains. All of the dry, stiff towels. Even the hot pads. What a pleasure!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Cold and Rainy

It's chilly and wet today. And as surprising as it might sound, that's the weather we were hoping for when we left home. It's been so hot this summer in Michigan -- many, many days in the upper 80s and quite a few in the 90s -- that we desperately wanted a break.

The cabin is at its coziest in cool, damp weather. Unfortunately the woodstove is gone (a victim of insurance regulations) but the cabin is still cozy and snug. With a blanket in my lap and my knitting in my hand, I'm as happy as can be.

With this weather running for the past few days, we won't have many blueberries to bring home. You just can't pick them in wet weather and expect them to last very long. But it's the kind of weather that forces you to relax. My kind of vacation.

I think it's time for a cup of tea.

Posted by Heather at the cabin, 8-11-11

Saturday, August 6, 2011

A New Deck

With a tiny cabin build almost 100 years ago, there's always something that needs to be repaired. Especially since it sits empty much of the year. Interestingly, it's often the things that were built much more recently that break down.

Two years ago it was the deck that over looks the river. Certainly an integral part of the cabin experience! The most relaxing thing on earth is to sit on the deck, watch the river go by, and smell the wonderful northern air.

Well, the timbers in the old deck had finally rotted to the point where it was unsafe. So 2009 was the year of the New Deck. It took a good bit of money and quite a lot of our vacation time, but the builders were very pleased with themselves once it was done. And now in 2011, it's such a treat to sit back there with your book, knitting, or to eat a meal.

Heather, 8.6.11, posted at the Elk Lake Public Library

A Sense of History

For as long as I worked in a historical museum, you'd think I'd be better at recording family history. I tend to be one of those people who means to do it but doesn't seem to get around to it nearly as often as I should.

My grandma, Eunice, was a terrific recorder of history. I think of her often when I'm here (she spent several summers here -- what a lovely treat). She would've loved the Internet -- all the genealogical research she conducted that took months and years, now takes seconds. And I bet she'd have a blog. I know she'd approve of this!

The purpose of this blog is to record our summer holidays at the log cabin in Elk Lake, Ontario. To reminisce. There's little history of the decades that the family has owned this little cabin, and it's about time we changed that!

Heather, 8.6.11, written at the Elk Lake Public Library