Friday, July 29, 2011

Too Tired For Words

Guess what we did today...  I'll give you a clue.

Yes, the pictures of the living room are rather dark.
Did you notice the difference?

I sure notice the difference.








And oh boy, did we get a lot done.

We had a problem tree.  Too close to the house, and too crazy.  Not far from the ground it split into three huge trunks.  At least two of the three had been topped at different times.  If you're not familiar with Douglas firs, if you top them, they will grow a "crown".  Many smaller branches will sprout right below the cut, and they all compete to become a new tree, way up high.  Sort of like a giant, mutant Saguaro cactus.  So this was not one tree we were dealing with, but several.

And did I mention the part about right next to the house?  Why yes, yes I did.
And the prevailing winds here blow toward the house.  Consequently anything that comes off the tree comes right at the house.  Yah.  I'm not too crazy about that part.  Oh, and they 'like' to break at the crowns.  We had one piece come down in a windstorm, right on the peak of the roof.  And the butt end of it was a good ten or eleven inches in diameter.

Not that I have to justify this to you (or anybody), but that's why we took out the tree.
That and I'm tired of cleaning needles out of the gutters,
cones out of the yard, and moss out of the grass.
Yah, that too.

Kind of tricky, this tree.  Being right next to our house, right next to the street, and surrounded by various power/phone/cable lines.  (We unhooked the neighbor's cable TV for about a half an hour, with their permission.)  But our logger friend dropped it right where we wanted, with surgical skill ;D

Then the work began... so many trunks, and branches, and cones, and so much mess!  And oh my, let me assure you, I am quite unaccustomed to eight hours of hard, physical labor.  But all went well, in spite of our neighbor - Moonbat Busybody.  A city official paid us a visit, early in the afternoon, claiming that they'd received a complaint (gee, who would've seen that coming) that we had cut down a tree without a permit (and we all know that permission = revenue) that was in the city right-of-way.

Well, let me tell you something.  My family has owned this house and property since 1902.  I'm pretty sure that tree was OURS.  But if he wants to call it the city's... I asked him,

Do you mean that we could have had the city remove this problem tree, that has been threatening our house for years?

Oh no, ma'am, the tree is the property owner's responsibility.

Well great.  We just took responsibility, then.

Actually, the city guy was pretty nice and very reasonable.
Much to Moonbat Busybody's chagrin, I'm sure.
We were tempted to buy a bottle of vodka and leave it on her doorstep, with a sympathy card, but decided to take the high-road and stop at gloating privately.

And thanks to my dad, Kerry, and three hard-working boys, we got a lot done.

How much?

I'll show you.





Felicity said...

That IS a lot of work! We took down a thorn tree right outside our front door, and there was mess (and thorns) everywhere!
I can't believe that neighbours would actually report you for doing that - do you really need a permit?? And I'm quite impressed that an official would respond immediately... here it takes a whole year just to get them to look at your complaint, and who knows how long to actually come out to see what's happening. A whole new tree could grow in the meantime... ;-)

melanie said...

wowsa. You have a new view out your window! And passers-by will have a new view IN... :D

I hope you are lounging at the lake today ;-)

Rebecca D said...

Wow... (Yep, that about covers it!)

h west said...

DANG! Lots of work and a HUGE difference. Thanks for the play-by-play.

leah said...

Oh, wow - removing that tree really opened up the front of the house! I love it! Plus, I'm sure you get more light through the window now. For those of us in more northerly climes, more light is always a good thing!

We have a maple tree in a similar situation. I love the tree for its leaves in the fall, but it is right up against the house. And we just had new gutters installed. Let's just say that its days are numbered.

Cutzi said...

Wow! That certainly was a lot of work!

And I'm always amazed at people like that.... they must not have enough exciting stuff happening in their own lives.

Herding Grasshoppers said...

Oh wow, it WAS a ton of work, and there's a lot of wood still there to deal with. Yes, it lets in a LOT more light, to our living room and the boys' bedroom above it. We've been kind of joking that there are going to be two or three weeks in the summer that we really miss that tree (no A/C), but the rest of the year the additional light will be a real blessing :D

Yes, we are kind of opened right up to the street, but being a bit above it, somehow it doesn't bother me much. I have sheers we can close for privacy too.

Surprisingly, from the street, the house looks so much larger! It really shows off the two gables nicely. Before, you couldn't really see the one on the left at all.

And Felicity... it's funny about the response to the complaint. I'm sure there are plenty of times you're frustrated about a LACK of response, but I'm really concerned about the social climate developing here. Our neighbor - the Moonbat - has a reputation in the neighborhood for reporting people for "violations"... but violations of WHAT? Her enviro-nazi ethic.

One time we were watering our bushes, let the hose run a little long, and some water trickled into the street. She called the city. By the time someone came we'd noticed and turned it off, but honestly - if I want to stand with my hose and squirt water into the street just for my entertainment, that's my business! It's not hurting anything! We have no water shortage here. (We get our city water from snowmelt in the Cascade mountains. What we don't collect (which averages - I just checked - 102 million gallons per minute - pours down the river and into the bay.)

But I digress... why would city officials want to encourage that kind of mentality? Why wouldn't old Moonbat just walk across the street and say, "Hey, I think your plants are saturated. Maybe you could turn your hose off?"

Instead, she calls the city, and they 'reward' her by paying us a visit, admitting there's not problem on our end, and wasting the taxpayers' money.

It's NUTS.

alicia hovies said...

Wow, does that ever look good! Can't wait to show Tom. He'll enjoy that!

Mrs. Squirrel said...

Wow... just wow!

We have a very large tree on our property (only one top), but it really needs to come down... with help.

Glad yours cleaned up so well!

The dB family said...

Whew! THAT is a LOT of work! Can I say that I LOVE your house? It's beautiful! I laughed out loud at your name for your interfering neighbour. I hope she doesn't read your blog ;o)!

Although the tree was beautiful, I totally get your reasons for cutting it down. I'm sure you'll enjoy your new view. I just hope it's not of Moonbat's house ;o).