I will finish my story about building the shed and how it became an important part of our home.
The house looked lonely, sitting on the ridge by itself. The only other building on the property was the little well house at the curve of the drive. And it was small, just enough room to duck in and work on the pump. Not an imposing structure at all, and not in close proximity to the house. It would, in the summer, be covered with poison ivy the size of tree trunks and filled with wasp nests! We would hack at the vines each year and beat it back, but we were never able to get rid of it.
So anyway, Bob needed a shed. We had enough lumber from the glass crates and set about pulling nails and deconstructing the crates until we had all the different dimensions of lumber laid out. There were enough 2x6s to create the floor structure and enough 2x4s to build the walls and the roof. Bob used concrete blocks for the piers under the floor, just one step up into the shed. He used the extra 2x6s as the flooring.
Our friend, Kevin Higdon, helped Bob with the construction. It may have been the first time he ever held a hammer in his hand, but he was good company!
Bob and Kevin had the structure built in a long weekend. We used plywood for the roof and a few rolls of roofing finished it up.
That’s when we ran out of money. We had a roof and a structure, but no walls, windows or doors. And Bob still needed to get his tools out of the weather and in some sort of order. So….. we bought 4 plastic tarps – they just happened to be a camouflage pattern! These were nailed across each wall – the shed was now dry and Bob could happily unpack his tools.
We joked and laughed that the locals driving by to see what the new people were up to, would just shake their heads when they saw this camo covered shed. “Don’t they know that deer blind is too close to the house!”
A few weeks later, it was finally sided with 4×8 siding and painted white with merlot and gray trim. We located the shed on the south of the house, close enough to build a covered walkway from the house to the shed. It also created a private area on the south of the house. And the area in front of the shed became my little kitchen garden. We fenced it with a picket fence and the garden gate was a headboard from an old wire bedstead – how that was found on the property is a tale for another time.
I grew herbs, cucumbers and beans, but also had lots of flowers – foxglove and lilies were my favorites. I laughed that the future owners would curse me for planting peppermint. It was very prolific and would take over, but how lovely to walk on the stone path and have that wonderful minty scent fill the air.
We planted a japanese maple, a bloodgood, in the corner of the garden and that astonishing burgundy color was one of my favorite things. It anchored the garden and gave the south side of the house shade in the heat of the summer.
This little shed and its surrounding garden was an essential part of our lives. It was a place to work and also a place to just sit and enjoy the day.
And I am sure that peppermint is still going strong!
Until next time…..