Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Our Garage Under the Deck

Anyone who's anyone out in the country has outbuildings. Large modern barn-like structures (or actual barns) that shelter their animals and/or equipment like tractors, motorcycles, mowers, and the like. We are less than anyone, as we have no outbuildings - unless you consider the newly constructed chicken coop. While outbuildings are nice, they also increase one's property taxes.

When we move here a little over two years ago, we didn't have the money to build any outbuildings. We still don't. And we're okay with that. During one of our many trips to Menard's (like a Lowe's or Home Depot if you don't live in the midwest), we noticed someone buying a product called a "garage in a box." It doesn't takes much explanation to tell you what it is. It's a $300 product that has a basic frame to which you attach a large tarp and voila!

We didn't want to spend $300 for something that would be destroyed easily by the high winds in our area, but when we bought our tractor (aka "the other woman") we knew we'd need a place to store it. So, my handy (and handsome) husband built us this:

A GARAGE UNDER THE DECK! Originally it was constructed of tarps but the winds quickly destroyed them so this past fall, my dad (who always seems to get roped into Paul's projects) and Paul, put up wood sides. There is also a "door" which is removed during the spring-fall seasons. Did I mention my husband is a mechanical engineer and very smart? (Though I was the one who actually had the idea first.)

This year a pair of birds decided they'd like a home under the tractor canopy. We still can't quite agree if they're phoebe birds, king birds, or bank swallows. But there they are and there's even eggs in the nest. They should be hatching any day.
Here's the resident groundhog. Elijah was downstairs one day and called to Ethan and I and said he saw a "big girl" (big squirrel) though we had no idea at the time that's what he meant. We ran downstairs and saw this guy peeking out through the edge of the "garage" and the "door" that was propped up against it. We haven't seen him since, but Paul has seen holes farther back on our property that mostly likely are his doing.

We flew this kite for a short period on Memorial Day. It kept getting stuck in our recently transplanted black walnut trees.
And as for those pesky chickens who keep pooping everywhere (like inside the real garage - eww!) and digging up my garden, they are laying VERY nicely. If you want to know if your eggs from the store are fresh, the yolks should look like these, with a very vibrant orange color. YUM!


Molly Koop said...

It is lovely, isn't it, being married to an engineer. And it helps, for sure, if he's handsome! :)
Those eggs look gorgeous. We often get fresh brown eggs. They are fun to color in the spring because their shells turn really pretty earthy, bright tones!

Ebe said...

Your husband sure is handy! That's an amazing garage. I am so envious of you!
It looks like you live in such a fun area...

your eggs are making me hungry!!

The Three 22nds said...

I was just telling my husband I wanted a shed under our new deck! I can't wait to show him your pictures!

Sara said...

I love seeing more pictures of your place. I love the country so I love hearing your funny stories about the chickens and all. Funny, we just had a lady at church come up and ask if we want to come over and learn how to kill chickens. I really don't want to but I thought this could be a fun "homeschool" project especially for the boys. So we will be doing that in the future. Your places looks so great. God's peace to you today friend.

Heidi said...

What a great use of space!

I love our fresh eggs...we pay through the tooth for them though... I wish we had the space to have our own!

Jennifer Ross said...

What a great idea for storage! I really got a laugh when I read "the other woman" comment, isn't that the truth. Those eggs look great. Hope your doing well. I'll have to get in touch with you soon:)