Thursday, June 3, 2010 the east side!

We've been spending a lot of time in the backyard these days.  It's always been (way down) on the to-do list to create a little (homestead, if you're me) or (haven, if you're Erik) but oh, it's always something!  It's been about a year and a half since I had the pond and waterfall put in, and the raised patio too. 

Since then, it's mostly status quo back there ~ mostly working on the flat-lands....getting the vegetable beds established, going at overgrown bushes with the hedge clippers, trying to keep the mulch in place and the weeds under control.  Whew!  It's been quite a job!

The hill ~ or, as we refer to it, that damn hill ~ was always looming.  Literally.  Unusable space, as it was, and completely covered in 4 foot tall grasses and sticker bushes.  Ugh!  So, I don't know what possessed me to head over to our neighbor's and offer some work to the fellow helping him set a fence. 

He was here for maybe 7 or so days, over a 3 week period.  Communicating completely in Spanish (his only language; my second language) and Maia's ULP (Universal Language of Point) we somehow managed to get these stairs fashioned into the side of the hill, taking us from the back of the yard to the top of the hill, right along the neighbor's fence.

You may notice, if you've seen the yard pictures from just a month ago, that he also spent two days hacking down and evacuating the weeds.  Thanks, Yciedro!  He also put a half-set of steps up the center, between the patio and the waterfall.  A path, that he leveled into the hill, splits from the top of the stairs and meanders across the middle of the hill.  Another partner-path does the same thing from the other stairs across the top of the hill.  He brought in the piedritas that cover the stairs and paths, one bucketful at a time.  Erik and I finished up a few wheel-barrow-fulls last weekend, and I can tell you for free, whatever he charged, it was not enough.  Era un bien gran trabajo!

There's a lot more show-and-tell for the hill, but let's wrap up this evening's edition by pointing out that I learned quite a few new Spanish words.  For example, I learned that "to dig" is either acavar or cavar (a little mumbling goes a long ways when you're not quite sure of a particular pronunciation!) and I also realized, totally by accident, that in Spanish the word for "wood" (madera) is very close to the word for "shit" (mierda).  That was an awesome conversation, because he started out very perplexed as to why I would need him to come back tomorrow, after I'd purchased some shit.  At the store. 


  1. LOL you are SO funny! I LOVE what you've done. I like hanging out in my little "place" like this and I'm sure you do.

  2. LOve it....when can I come over...I just need to get a job in california and it will be perfect!

  3. That looks gorgeous, Mia! BTW, dig is "excava," at least that's what I have learned from Go, Diego, Go! (

  4. Mierda was my dad's favorite cuss word when I was a kid. :)

  5. great outside space! we are working on our yard slowly. like the house. a little bit here and there.

  6. @ Linda ~ hehe I'm doing some more work this weekend so I'll let you know how it goes.

    @ Brit ~ Just get down here! You can telecommute from my house just as well as you can from the Burrough...

    @ Pamela ~ Oh, I speak Spanish slightly less well than a four-year-old! :) Excavar certainly makes the most sense. Ah, well, it's all so forgiving! Thanks again for hanging out when you came to SF...I had a BLAST with you and I'm looking forward to hearing the update to your crazy summer. :)

    @ Carmen ~ ha! How old were you when you figured out what he was saying? Or did you always know?

    @ Michelle ~ So. Slow. We still have a big unfinished hole in our wall between the kitchen and the living room, with the 2x4s showing and all. When people come over, they always say (so sweet!), "ah, yes, remodels can be so challenging!" haha! That hole has been there, just like that, for 5 years now! We just giggle.