Sunday, August 22, 2010

Greenhouse Roof

There you have it folks, the first project across the finish line. I should have waited to take the photo as I hadn't yet fixed the little wrinkle in the middle (near the ladder), so you'll just need to take my word for it that its flawless! What I'm not so proud to admit is that I started working on this at 9am today and am just now finishing at 4:30pm... needless to say lots of distractions between start and finish which I suppose is a luxury I can afford given the time I have on my hands.

One of the distractions today was to take a peek inside our beehive. Glad to report that things seem to be going really well in there... lots of capped brood, larvae, eggs, and what appears to be a healthy population of workers, so still planning to harvest some honey in the next month or so. Earlier this week I noticed a few drone (male) bees walking around on the ground with deformed wings. Its hard to tell at first, but if you pick one up (don't worry, drones don't have stingers) you can see that their wings are sort of wrinkled up and stumpy, thus they can't fly and have to walk to get around. Earlier this year we learned that when you see bees walking on the ground with deformed wings it means that their wings were likely damaged while they were developing and that the culprit is a public enemy #1 to bees, the infamous varroa mite. Drone bees have a longer development period by about a week so the varroa mites tend to attach more to drones than to workers, that is unless you have a really nasty infestation of varroa then they are all over all the bees (which is what we had to deal with earlier this year). So maybe later this week might be good to treat them for varroa mite again just to stay in front of the problem.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Home Alone

Ana, Tomas, Mila, and Emilia all left Wednesday, leaving me here to fend for myself for the next 3 weeks. I've been threatening to trim the beach grasses in front of our house for months (Ana has veto'd me every time), so now that she's gone... anyway, sorry Ana. Hey look at it this way, you should consider yourself lucky that this is about as bad as I act out!

So today I got all the basics out of the way, weeded all the gardens, mowed the lawn, etc., and tomorrow I'll start my first major project - roofing the greenhouse. Last winter during the same storm that blew over our fence, our greenhouse roof peeled back like a banana and almost landed over in our next door neighbor's yard. In fact I was up on the ladder trying to secure the greenhouse roof when I heard a loud crash and turned to see the fence go down. Anyway, so tonight I took the first of what will likely be multiple trips to Home Depot for materials, and got thinking about a bunch of other potential projects. At the end of the day, they are all just distractions to keep me from missing what is really important.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Dad's Weekend

I had been trying to think of a way to show Ana how much I appreciate all she does around here, so a few months ago I offered to take the kids for an entire weekend by myself and she could go do whatever she wanted. Ana decided she wanted to go spend a weekend up in SF, so I made all the arrangements and it was set. We definitely missed having AP and Vovo here, but I have to say, I think I kept things 'operational' at a minimum and at times running pretty well. We took a trip to the toy store, hit the local playground, played in the backyard, and the highlight was a drive up to the redwood forrest. To be honest, it was a lot of work taking care of the kids and not letting the house fall apart... and to be sure it really gave me a new level of understanding for what it takes to run this place. Welcome home Ana, we missed you!

Sunday, April 04, 2010


Very active few days at the Teeple farm... things got started with some egg coloring with Grandma Nancy, then the very next morning a visit from... the Easter Bunny. Tomas heard the knock and after taking a peek thru the window gave clear and direct instructions... "don't open the door Mama". For whatever reason the big fluffy freaked him out, but he rebounded and I think enjoyed the visit. Mila's focus is almost singular... mobility. Her walking skills improve daily and she now can cruise from one end of the house to the other in no time at all, added benefit for all of us is that she now can wear dresses (crawling in dresses doesn't work) and so look Mila's Easter dress, I just love it!! Obrigada Grandma for all the nice treats .

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Busy weekend

The hardware for my beekeeping project got here last week, so didn't waste anytime putting it together. A local beekeeper is going to sell me a "nuc" in a few weeks.. basically its a mated queen and a few frames of bees. Not sure what kind of honey flow we'll get but should be fun.

On Saturday Mila started walking. She's been taking the odd step here and there for months, but then yesterday for some reason she decided she was ready. We got some good video, will post soon. Sunday was mostly work in the back yard, we put in a new orange tree, we built a fence in the flower garden, replanted our blueberries...getting ready for warmer weather.. Tomas broke out the paints and Mila spent a lot of time in her swing just observing everything. They are great kids, we are very lucky.