In this episode we’re talking about one of our favorite things ever – trading work days with family and friends! We give examples and details on how we’ve been able to get major house and garden projects done by trading work days. What is a “trade day?” People come over and help for a day, then you go and help them for a day. With more people on the job, the transformation is amazing. Plus, it’s super fun! And it’s rhubarb season, so Jami shares her favorite recipes. Brian gives a couple farmhouse/garden updates – and a discussion on slow-going real-life remodeling. Finally, we both share some cool discoveries we’ve made lately – including a free thing for you!
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Work Day Trades
I’m not sure why it took us all the way until episode 58 to talk about trading work days with family and friends since I love it and we’ve been able to get so many projects done that would’ve taken us a LOT longer to do ourselves. Above is a prime example: my sister and sister-in-law painting the French door that Brian was so happy finally got all it’s panes painted.
We shared about how friends helped us put in the new front door and excavate dirt and rocks on the farmhouse on past episodes of the podcast: excavating in Episode 44 and the new front door in Episode 45. These were just a couple of the traded work days that we’ve continued for years with one other couple – one day I’ll have to share a project we do at their house so you know we actually do trade with them!
While smaller two-family work days are the easiest to keep going over the years, seasons (like over a spring or summer) of extended family work days have resulted in the biggest results (because, more people) and I’ve shared some really good work day projects here on the blog that illustrate what you can accomplish:
That last one, the major yard makeover, is the one I mentioned that was so amazing to me when I looked at the before and after photos again. Really, click this link to go see the photos so you can fully appreciate the updated pictures below!
As promised, I headed to my sister’s to take some recent photos for you since the photos in the makeover were taken in 2010. They’ve added some things and taken such good care of it, that it’s a really beautiful space now (which you might remember seeing before in winter when I shared the sweet AirBnB cottage we stayed in during our snow, too):
The area where the cottage sits was left in the makeover as a potential play area for the kids. With a park down the road, they never really needed it, so they spent a few years building this cute cottage that they rent out on Airbnb. That structure to the left of the cottage is a pretty sophisticated two-room outdoor shower – with a water heater! You can go here to see the listing if you’re interested.
The plants have grown and filled in, creating waves of color all season as there’s always something in bloom (this was taken in May).
They’ve done a great job maintaining the structure and plants. And it’s fun for me to see how my design worked and many of the plants I split from our yard doing so well in their yard all these years later!
Not too much going on with the farmhouse to show since we mentioned we’re concentrating on the garden this month. We did talk about how slow renovation is sometimes when you’re doing it yourselves. #reallife
Above is the culprit that ate all our lettuce and pea seedlings and destroyed the carrot sprouts with their digging – ground squirrels. Gotcha!
Here’s a link to the affordable game camera we used if you need to see what’s going on in your yard, too.
It’s rhubarb’s prime season (in case you’re like Brian and had no clue…) and you’ll want to try one – or three – of these recipes because they are SO good:
- Start with the popular Ultimate Rhubarb Guide with info on growing and harvesting as well as tons of recipes for cooking with and preserving rhubarb.
- Spicy Rhubarb Chutney
- Rhubarb Chutney Salad Dressing (made with the chutney)
- Honey Lemon Rhubarb Butter
- Orange Rhubarb Muffins
- Rhubarb Honey Crumb Bars
- Small Batch Honey Rhubarb Ginger Jam
This is Really Cool!
Brian’s: Recording a short book onto Audible, Cherry Coke, which he’s offering as a FREE download for listeners! (or as a readable PDF as well).
Simply email Brian at: [email protected] to claim yours!
Brian also talked about his How to Write White Papers In a Day book and course:
Jami’s: Code Name Verity – a super well written spy/mystery book from World War II featuring a female pilot and her upperclass friend that gets captured in occupied France. The audiobook that we listened to was really well done.
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