First Day of Summer

First Day of Summer

It has been an intense week!

The shed project continues, slowly. Attila estimated it would take him two weekends and the week in between to complete it; not even close! The roof is on, which is an essential part of the project because it keeps things dry. But the issues with water are not all addressed. The shed sits at the back of the garage, where the water from the garage roof drains. Attila has a plan as to how to prevent that water from pouring into the shed, but I don’t know any details. Best not to get involved at this point, and I will feel relieved when that final phase of protection from the elements is completed. Then on to the walls, the door, and the window.

And then there is the old shed, which sits in bits in a heap on the back lawn. Last night we packed about a third of it into Tank and headed to the Rideau Camp. There we sectioned the wood and burned it as a campfire. Two or three more trips and campfires should have the wood debris burned. The remaining materials, insulation, etc. will be bagged and taken to the construction waste site for disposal, which we will have to pay for.

For the last ten days Attila worked every minute of time off work on the shed, grabbing a bite to eat after dark when he came in from the yard. It wore us both out. We are going to slow the project down, and at least eat dinner together this week. Hopefully he will have the job done by the end of the month, but even that might be optimistic. Attila works slowly, learning as he goes. He is not a seasoned builder, although he does have some experience. Experience is what really counts in the building trade though, and going slowly allows him to self-correct as he moves forward. The shed is built to local and provincial building codes, but there is a lot more to it than simply meeting code.

The shingles are on! It took all day Saturday, into the night, but Attila got the shingles on, with only the roof cap and the trimming left to do on Sunday morning. Water is still an issue, because the garage roof, seen through the shed, drains in the direction of the shed, so it if rains the water from the roof will pour into the shed, might pour into the back of the garage. We are supposed to get thunder storms this afternoon, I have my fingers crossed Attila can get the drainage issue sorted before it rains, otherwise we might have a huge mess to clean up! Life can be very exciting.
Shed shingles

On Saturday morning early our neighbour’s yard sale began. He had advertised the event, and then put flyers in the mailboxes of all the neighbours to invite them to join in on the event. Four other households put items out for sale, which included us. I put out four items, two of which sold, the portable air conditioner, and an iron. The air conditioner was a good deal for the fellow who bought it, as it was still on warranty. We just don’t have enough room here at Mist Cottage to store things we do not use, and our heat pump provides excellent air conditioning so the unit was not going to be used again. The iron was one of the two we had, one for each of our two houses; it is lovely to have just one house!

Also on Saturday there was a Baby Shower for Terra, which I attended. It was tricky getting the vehicle out of the driveway, as the yard sales had generated quite a bit of interest, and the street was lined on both sides with cars, but I managed. It was a 45 minute drive from home, and held in the afternoon at the home of Lares first cousin. Luna drove to stay with Terra for the weekend, and she and Imp and Tink (girls) were at the shower, while Elf (boy) was on a rough camping trip with his Dad and another Dad and son, for a boys weekend Father’s Day extravaganza. There were oodles of people at the shower, many of whom I had met once before, and lots and lots of children and babies. Of course Sunny and Sky were not there, they remained safely under the watch of the professionals at NICU. It was wonderful to see Imp and Tink, I almost didn’t recognize them they had changed so much since the last time I saw them at Christmas. Attila stayed home and worked on the shed, he isn’t fond of “get togethers”, and wanted to keep working on the shed.

Yesterday morning, Sunday, Terra, Luna, Imp, and Tink arrived bearing cards and gifts for Attila for Father’s Day. Terra soon departed, heading for the hospital to feed Sunny and Sky. After Imp and Tink had finished their lunch of cheese, crackers, raw carrots and peppers, and cranberry juice with ginger ale, a beverage Grandpa made for them, Grandma slipped in a bowl of ice cream for each of them. Soon they were off to visit friends on their way home, a four to five hour drive away.

The afternoon found us welcoming Sister-The-Middle-Girl and her Beau Bob for a visit. They had been camping at a nearby Provincial Park, and made a detour on their way home to stop by at our house. The weekend was perfect weather for it, they had their bicycles with them, and it sounded like a lot of fun. It was their first visit to Mist Cottage, so we showed them around, then sat on the back porch talking. The back porch is scorchingly hot in the afternoon sun, so I hung blankets across the porch clothes line to shade the sitting area, it worked well to keep the area relatively cool.

During their visit, I found myself gabbing away about my book, which has been occupying almost all of my time over the last ten days, while Attila has been working non-stop on the shed. Sometimes, when I have spent a lot of time in solitary work, I am like a little kid at show and tell, when I find a willing ear, even a not so willing ear, I share and share and share. I wonder if this output only mode is a partial consequence of having spent so much time at a keyboard which requires constant output, and offers interactive feedback only when I am in touch with my Mom and sisters. I have become unused to interacting with people face t face, other than very superficial pleasantries, with the exception of Attila.

After my sister and Beau Bob headed out on the next leg of their journey, Attila decided he wanted to go to the Rideau Camp. Within an hour he had loaded up a third of the wood debris from the old garden shed and whipper snipper, I had filled 7 water jugs, snacks and beverages, and loaded them into Tank, and we set off for the Rideau Camp.

We were relieved that the army worms had not stripped the leaves from the trees at the camp! Everything was lush and green and a sight for sore eyes. Attila cut the grass and weeds in the camp area and on either side of our long driveway. I burned the wood debris we had brought with us, as luckily there was no fire ban in the Township, we checked online before we left. I watch the watch for fire bans carefully and always obey them; I would hate to loose our beautiful trees! By the the time we had burned the fire down to grey ash, it was dark. After taking our time putting out the fire using the water we brought from home, we headed out towards Mist Cottage under moonlight. It was a perfect ending to the day.

The moon is full tonight, today is Summer Solstice, the longest day of the year and the first day of summer. With a humidex of 38C, Mother Nature is emphasizing the event.

Worldly Distractions


18°C °C °F
Date: 5:00 AM EDT Monday 20 June 2016
Condition: Not observed
Pressure: 101.9 kPa
Tendency: falling
Temperature: 17.8°C
Dewpoint: 14.9°C
Humidity: 83%
Wind: S 12 km/h

Mainly sunny. Wind becoming southwest 40 km/h gusting to 60 this morning. High 30 except 25 near Lake Ontario. Humidex 38. UV index 8 or very high.
Partly cloudy with 60 percent chance of showers or thunderstorms this evening. Clearing overnight. Wind southwest 40 km/h gusting to 60 becoming northwest 20 gusting to 40 this evening then light after midnight. Low 15.


“A child becomes an adult when he realizes that he has a right not only to be right but also to be wrong.”
Thomas Szasz


  1. I am losing it.
    While reading your entry, I had a comment all picked out to type, and now, at the end of it, I cannot recall what that comment was! Even going back and re-reading all your paragraphs again… my mind is a sieve.

    If Attila had a friend who was also a licensed carpenter it might be nice if he had some help doing the shed. Yes, building a structure is so much more than just slapping up four walls and a roof. Codes for everything, and measuring everything correctly is so important.

    When you mentioned about the water run-off from the garage, I had a picture in my head of a giant deck umbrella installed over the shed, to shed the water off it!

  2. Bex, that sounds way to familiar!! I find that at times I open the browser to do something and by the time program opens I have no idea what I intended to do. This happens with more frequency now than it did ten years or so ago.

    It would be nice if Attila had a carpenter friend! I imagine that someday he might, but not yet, we have only lived here since last September, and he has been slogging it with the shift work. He is out there right now, as I write, constructing the wall/roof join to secure it from the wet.

    The giant umbrella would be an interesting temporary solution!

  3. WendyNC

    No biggy. Re-route the downspout from the garage and then install a French drain along the side of the shed if the runoff might still come close.

    Okay, I’m being somewhat facetious since I don’t know the topography of your lot, but as someone who lives in a part of the world with many, many creeks, both dry and wet, I’ve dealt with drainage issues my entire adult life. In fact, that was part of the big attraction of the current “house at the top of the hill.”

    Good on Attila for being such a careful builder and building to code. The process may seem tedious now, but it’s so worthwhile in the long run.

  4. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    That’s one thing about construction, it always takes longer than you expect. Fortunately, it looks like the thunderstorms might have passed by. Hope it’s the same for you.

    Glad to hear your Rideau trees haven’t been denuded by the army worms. When you mentioned the tent caterpillars and army worms recently I was concerned they might be trouble.

    I like your quote. I think a lot of politicians might not have grown up, though.

    Uh oh, I might have spoken too soon about our thunderstorms. It looks like the clouds here are reacting to the heat of the city and blossoming. I can hear constant rumbles in the distance as the area expands and is backing up toward us.

  5. Wendy, a French Drain, I had to look it up, is a great idea! We hadn’t quite reched to point where we figured out where the roof water was going to go, and the French drain is perfect!

    Going slowly should mean only doing the job once, it should last the rest of our time at the house, and I am hoping maybe another 40 good years in me… lol, that is optimistic but you never know!

  6. The thunderstorms arrived here Teri, just a half hour after Attila finished the basic roof drainage system. It is a severe thunderstorm, a deluge of rain, deep thrumming thunder, some hail and the power is flickering, to the point where it just took out the internet service. The laptop is now on battery, but the lights are back on again, and the internet is attempting to reconnect.

    This gives us a good chance to see how the drainage system works, and we can see that the French Drain Wendy suggested is badly needed, on both sides of the shed. The gardens are grateful for the rain, and so far are surviving the hail. I hope you didn’t suffer any damage at your house Teri!

  7. Looks like it rained further south in the city but we didn’t get anything, only rumbles of thunder. Sorry to hear you got battered. Hope the construction work was far enough along that it had no problems.

    The French drain or weeping tile, as it’s sometimes called, sounds like a good idea. We have something like that here with the stairwell to our basement entrance. It’s stopped our basement from getting flooded a number of times.

  8. We had quite a storm Teri, but luckily the leakage was minimal and provided excellent feedback on the efficacy of the design, tweaks will be made. The hail did not damage the garden, and now it is well watered.

  9. Here in the Pacific North West, we are very aware of water and how it can find a path inside no matter what you do to divert it! The French drain sounds like a good idea. I like the details you provide, and love following the many projects you and Attila maintain. I’m so glad that Summer Solstice is finally here, and hopefully some warmer weather, with no wind!

  10. You know Diane, I’ve only been to the Province of British Columbia, and the Vancouver/Victoria/Chiliwack area, twice, and both times the weather was sunny, breezy and mild, beautiful! I have been told that my experiences are very lucky indeed. Water, it certainly is a force to be reckoned with. I sure hope the French Drain works as we think it will. I had a look out there this morning and the cement pad and base of the shed were buried in mud that had been washed down into the wall, something obviously needs to be done about it!

    Summer! We have had warm weather here for the last week, heat warnings over the past weekend, and finally the temperature has dropped to the mid 20s. I hope it becomes sunny and mildly warm where you are Diane, and that you have many happy days of summer!

  11. I have just re-read your post, and your response to me. Thanks for the wish for a mild and sunny summer for us. To date, that has not happened, and I am wondering if it’s going to be one of dreary, wet ones. Oh, I’m being negative—not like me!

  12. I can’t imagine wet weather for this long Diane, through the spring and right into the summer! I know that after four or five cloudy days I am longing for sunny skies. I just had a look at the Vancouver weather report, and it says it is raining! If the weather people are correct there may sunny days in the forecast, starting Sunday, with a beautiful warm temperature of 22C… I hope they are right!

  13. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    I’m also from the PNW, Seattle being my home. Sorry to hear about the wet weather but hang in there. Looks like lots of sunshine forecast starting on Sunday. 🙂 *fingers crossed*

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