Sunday, July 04, 2010

Always doing things the hard way

Yup, that's my motto.

I've been slowly removing the grass from our yard for the last 20 years. When we moved in, it was probably close to 7500 sqft of grass (lot - house - driveway - a rather uninteresting border of mugo pines and rhodies). I'm figuring that I'm down to about 250 sqft of grass now, about half was removed by hired guns, rest removed by myself. (Oh yeah, that chair, it's holding back the rugosa rose.)

So after these last two days of back-breaking labor, I've removed (by hand!), what, another 30sqft? I'll be putting down a path to go around the strawberry bed and the sedum bed. Another week of work, and I'll be ready to put down the path, which will be a combination of red bricks and cement pavers. It will be very pretty, you'll see.

I haven't done all of the grass-removal the stupid way, of course. If it's an area to be planted, then I've actually done it the smart way—a layer of newsprint and topped w/ mulch. But since this is to be a path, all the organic materials have to be removed, so here I am, with my shovel...

Haven't seen the robin parents for a couple of days, but I'm pretty sure the babies haven't fledged yet. I'm resisting the temptation to get out a ladder and peek. Maybe I just don't get to see the ones that survive, but I don't seem to be having very good luck here with those birds nests. Last year, I had a bushtit nest; mommy and daddy were busy, busy, busy, but then I never saw the fledglings either.

On other fronts

I've been getting the Portland Open Studios website ready for our 2010 tour. It's almost ready to upload now, with new artists, new sponsors, new supporters, new community partner, new scholarship recipients. I've also been interviewing and profiling artist, with 5 interviews in the can and 2 profiles completed. See here and here.

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