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Ben's blog

  • Robin eggs

    Towards the end of Winter, we’ve had the great privilege of observing a robin build a nest in a small pine right next to the house. We’d see it pick dry grass and go in the same tree over and over again. We found the really quaint nest it built.

    Working on the beehives a few days ago, which are close to the nest; the robin would take off and start chirping in alarm relentlessly until I left. This happens every time we get close to the nest.

    We soon found the reason why:


    I really like how the inside of the nest is made with finer material. Thinking about mama robin choosing carefully each piece of grass anthropomorphizes the bird.

    All in all, it chose a pretty horrible spot for a nest: a very small pine well within reach of predators and close to humans and bees. But it’s very very accessible for us to observe :) we try not to intrude too much. And we’ll definitely keep the predators away.

  • Uncovering the Garlic

    They’re already doing great.IMG_4284

  • Building another house

    The sandbox is turning into quite the project.IMG_4271

  • The Sky is at it again

    Really cool although faint circular rainbowIMG_4177

  • Upping our game

    We are finally planting a real garden after years of temporary arrangements. We are a long way from the square foot gardening we did in Utah. We’re at the opposite extreme really. From an urban space-constrained deserty Utah to a rural roomy arable Vermont.IMG_4157Huge thanks to Fred for saving me hours or brutal work with his awesome tractor :).

  • Started staining cedar shingles

    The house will become beautiful this Summer.IMG_4062

  • Happy campers

    FullSizeRender(2)Stainless steel Maine made Bison hand pump. Gets us water from 72′ deep, which at 1.5 gallon per foot is about 100 gallons that we get to pump from. We’re still not sure how fast the well fills back up 72′ deep, but we measured it at the top and it gives us a couple of gallons per hour.

    So we still need to understand how fast the water comes up the water column. We also need to come up with a solution to prevent the water from rising above the freeze line. Fortunately, we have 8 months until next Winter to figure it out.

    We aren’t drinking the water just yet, we need to wait and get it tested first. The pump operates very smoothly and pumps out a few gallons in little time and with little effort. Our effort to gallon ratio is about to go way down, this will be an enormous improvement from where we are now. Eventually we’ll run water to the house, there is still a lot of unknown on how we’ll do this, but we have ideas for manual processes that are part of a daily routine or solar instrumentation.