Shed Widow

Shed Widow

Yesterday I had Attila fish the hoe out of the chaos of the garage, and early in the morning I was out in the fresh air attacking the weeds that threaten our beans, garlic, peppers, tomatoes, borage, and another unknown plant that Attila says he didn’t plant, but I know is’t a weed. It took several hours, and the results were very satisfying. It gave the green beans in particular a boost, as they are suddenly sending out new growth.

We are heading into a moderate heat wave with high humidity, and blessedly cool nights. It isn’t my favourite kind of weather, but I am grateful for the cool nights. I have been taking my walks before 8 a.m. to catch the cooler morning temperature; yesterday I wore a sweater and regretted it. My discomfort was twofold. I was too warm in the sweater, even at 15C, and my back was bothering me. Each step I took was mildly painful, which meant I could carry on. However as the little ouches tallied up, my body began to protest, breaking into a cold sweat. I managed the entire circuit and arrived home dampish. Luckily when I stopped moving the pain stopped too. After taking an Ibuprofen, and resting for a bit, I was fine. It may have been the hoeing that set off my back pain, yes I think that must have been it.

Attila is completely focused on the shed project. He changes into his construction clothes when he gets home from work, and doesn’t stop until it gets too dark to work, after 9 p.m., when we eat our dinner then go to bed. This routine, of waking hours at home devoted solely to shed construction, has been going on since last Friday evening. Suddenly yesterday I was tired of it, and feeling Attila’s absence. There is no help for it now though, the shed must be completed and the construction debris taken to the waste facility. I doubt I will be willing to agree to another big renovation project this summer! In for a penny, in for a pound, I am going to be a shed widow for another week or so!

I wonder if anyone else is experiencing this annoyance with the horrid autocorrect spelling feature. The feature will not turn off on my system, no matter what I do, no advice from anywhere has made the least bit of difference. Now, when I am typing and the bloody dictionary doesn’t recognize the word, it replaces it with an incorrect substitute while I am typing the next word. This means that I face an incorrect word, with the next word embedded in the middle of it. This autocorrect feature is a menace to literacy! It might be a conspiracy to restrict written expression, because autocorrect does nothing but harm the genre. It is as if computer barons are attempting to control language, and thereby communication. Lets face it, in a world where Donald Dump Duck is popular, a thoughtful population is undesirable. That’s my conspiracy theory anyway.

Last Friday Sunny the little boy twin preemie Grandbaby, developed an infection. He was tested for meningitis, a standard procedure, and we didn’t get wind of the results, but probably would have if he had tested positive. However, the latest short text message told us that he is out of isolation and back with his sister in NICU, eating, crying, flailing about, which is all good news. I have read that it is a roller coaster ride, having a premature baby in NICU, and they have double the experience. I don’t really want to visit Sunny and Sky again while they are so very vulnerable to infections and other hazards from the outside world, adding additional risk is not something I am comfortable doing. Maybe when they are a few weeks older it won’t seem to so risky to me, but for now, I think their parents are the only ones who need to be with them. The rest of us can wait.

The Garden Shed is beginning to take shape! Attila finished the roof sheeting last night, just as it was getting dark. It looked as if it might rain last night, but it didn’t so the sheeting is dry this morning. Attila says next come the end facia boards, then the tar paper on the roof, then the shingles. The plywood that he is using for sheeting on the exterior walls is small bits and pieces he salvaged and saved from other projects over the years, so not appropriate for use on the roof where strength is an issue. Plywood is better by far than particle board, not nearly so vulnerable to water damage and warping.

The shed will have a window above a steel door, and wood siding. I don’t really want wood siding, you have to paint it. I wanted aluminum siding. However, Attila wants the wood because he has enough to do the job, and it will cost us nothing, except for the paint. We decided that when we put new metal siding on the house, we will put the same siding on the shed. A project for another year.

Shed roof

Worldly Distractions

Date: 6:00 AM EDT Thursday 16 June 2016
Condition: Mostly Cloudy
Pressure: 101.0 kPa
Tendency: falling
Visibility: 24 km
Temperature: 17.2°C
Dewpoint: 10.9°C
Humidity: 66%
Wind: NE 13 km/h
Mainly cloudy. Clearing late this morning. Wind becoming east 20 km/h near noon. High 27. Humidex 30. UV index 8 or very high.
A few clouds. Wind northeast 20 km/h becoming light this evening. Low 12.


“I get up every morning determined to both change the world and have one hell of a good time. Sometimes this makes planning my day difficult.”
E. B. White
1899 – 1985


  1. I hope your back feels better. The shed is taking good shape, and should be very durable. I hope you can enjoy the rest of your summer after it is finished, without big projects. I hope your new grandchild’s infection is gone.

  2. Hoeing, as I recall,will cause your back to hurt, since those muscles are rarely used. It’s years since I did some real hoeing, but I’ll never forget the soreness! I hope your little preemie recovers and stays in good health. Such a worry!

  3. Thanks Joan! I think I have persuaded Attila that one big project per season is about all we can comfortably manage. The shed project looks like it will be completed, or functionally completed, by the end of June, which leaves us with three lovely months of relative leisure before the cold weather returns.
    Sunny had a good day yesterday, hopefully the first of many!

  4. Diane, I had forgotten what hard work hoeing is! I used to hoe acres and acres of strawberries on the farm, helping my mother, who did the lion’s share of the hard graft on our fruit farm, as well as raising six children. I didn’t even notice it back then, but I sure do now!

    Thanks for the good wishes for Sunny, missives of support are really appreciated by Terra, who is on the front line, spending all of her waking hours at the hospital.

  5. I’m envious of your having a spouse who enjoys working around the house. Mine does not. He has other good qualities, none of which I’d trade for anything, but I just secretly wish he’d find joy in doing yard work, building a garage or shed, putting up a decent fence… but he enjoys none of that and only does the bare minimum needed. I should be grateful for the bare minimum, then… and I am… Your shed is just lovely. I love a good shed! It looks like it may even have a small attic space? With a ladder going up to it? Nice design.

  6. I feel very lucky that Attila is willing to tackle these projects. Mist Cottage would have been unlivable otherwise, so the purchase was based on Attila wanting to do renovations. It was his mother that tackled these kinds of thing when he was growing up, his Dad was not in the least bit interested.

    This shed is just what we need! It is just under the maximum height allowed, and will have a small attic space for light, seldom used items. Our snowblower is large, so it will live there, along with the lawn mower, and garden tools. Right now all of these things are crowded into the garage, floor to ceiling. The garage roof leaks, so we have a whole tarp system going on in there to protect our belongings. The shed has been on our list since we bought the place, but now that we live here it is curicia to our comfort.

  7. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    Oh, ouch! Yes, hoeing can play the devil with a back. Hope it’s not bothering you, anymore.

    I didn’t realize they’d upgraded the temps that much in the weekend forecast, so I had to go check. I’m lucky that I still feel somewhat chilly when the temp gets around 25C/77F, but looks like temps will be higher than that this weekend. I wilt in high heat and humidity, so I’m hoping this coolness I feel holds on.

    Looks like Attila is doing great with the shed. In short order it should be functional and the two of you enjoying your summer.

    Sorry to hear about young Sunny’s infection. Glad to hear he came back from it well. As much as Terra loves these sweeties I don’t envy her the rollercoaster ride of emotions at all. Sending all of you hugs and hopes for a smoother road.

  8. Teri, I stay relatively cool as long as I have air moving around me and i don’t move. The instant I become active I heat up quickly and suffer. Humidity make it that much worse. Attila says I have five degree zone of comfort, and he is right, although the zone may be smaller than five degrees.

    Sunny is holding on, I hope he makes it. It is still touch and go for the babies, the prognosis is good, but not a guarantee. The longer they hang on to life, the better their chances are of staying with us.

  9. TopsyTurvy (Teri)

    Aw, that’s sad to see you say it like that. I guess that’s the reality but it all sounded more optimistic before. I do keep counting each day, knowing the twins have a better chance of making it as each day goes by.

    I think I’m like you, with a limited comfort zone. I can still be chilly at 74F but by the time we get into the 80s I start wilting, so I don’t think I’d make a 10 degree celsius comfort zone. Fortunately, our area tends to have quite a few days in my comfort zone. (Aren’t you glad you don’t have to deal with the country house versus your comfort zone anymore? That was rough, even we could see it just from your writing.)

  10. Yes the reality of it is sad Teri, but if i allow myself to forget how tenuous the situation really is, and something happens, it would devastate me. I am a person that has to keep all the factors in sight; it helps me to keep balanced. There is great cause for optimism though, the babies haven’t run into anything insurmountable yet!

    At the country house the only air conditioning we had was a window banger for the bedroom, and then a portable air conditioner last year which we used in the bedroom. At Mist Cottage we have the heat pump, which is a whole house affair and controlled by a thermostat. I use it judicially. For instance, overnight, even though the temperature was low, the humidity in the house crept up. The air conditioning was turned on and set to 20C, and I let it run until 7 a.m. when the price of power went up, then i turned it off. With the windows closed for the day, the house remained comfortable, and the air conditioning won’t be needed until tomorrow morning for an hour or so. So easy to keep the place regulated. Of course, when the night time temperatures stay high, the air conditioning is used thought the night for comfortable sleeping.

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