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  • Rae

Part 8: Things We Say Now.

Updated: Jul 20, 2023

It's funny. We find ourselves saying things we've never said before. Like "wow, things really grow here!... If you're done for the day, why don't we go to the beach?... Look at how pretty the cove is tonight!... Let's go to Lunenburg for lunch!... Yes, I think I'll have another lobster roll!... I wonder what will happen on the build today?... This will be the view from our studio!"

The framing for the first floor continues...

Ground floor framing is going up in a hurry!

... and we realize how generous the size of the laundry/mud room is – it's going to allow for a bench and coat rack for guests heading up to the studio, as well as great storage options for all our outdoor gear.

Nice big window above the washer and door to the courtyard.

The garage is a great width for kayaks and storage, and Alan's workshop has a nice big window at the back under the stairs, allowing for lots of natural light.

The view as you enter the garage.

July continues to be really warm with clear skies. We have no air conditioning and we find our office space becomes too hot in the late afternoon, so we've been going to the beach... a lot!

Dinner picnic on Risser's Beach.

Boxwood Festival is on in Lunenburg and Alan realizes that one of the performers in the opening concert is someone he knows from his recording days in Calgary, Maeve Gilchrist, a Celtic harp player and singer.

The very beautiful St. John's Anglican church in Lunenburg.

The concert is held at St. John's Anglican Church – it is recognized as one of North America's best examples of Carpenter Gothic, an entirely wood construction that mimics gothic features. It is really hot in the church, but so great to see Maeve play – such a beautiful instrument and pretty voice. And really nice for Alan to see her again!

During the day, we make it a point to pop outside to take some photos so we don't miss a thing. Most of the framing and sheeting is done on the first floor when the floor trusses arrive!

The guys have lots of room to work with our back orchard area. There are two very old, but cool-looking apple tress back there, and we can see that their life is pretty much spent; their trunks are rotted out and they are only producing a few gnarly apples, so we will cut them down this fall. A great opportunity for Alan to use his new chainsaw skills and give us some apple wood to burn, and apple wood chips for the Green Egg as well. Sweet! Next Spring we will plant a new orchard: apples, cherries and maybe peaches and pears too. Okay. That sentence has never come out of my mouth before either. LOL

The trusses are in place and braces are added to keep everything secure.

Next to arrive is the sub-floor for the second story.

The guys casually standing on the trusses alarm me a little... but I think they've done this before.

Before we know it, the floor is in place and the braces are removed.

As soon as the crew leaves, we prop a ladder and scramble up onto the second floor. For the very first time, we are able to see what the view will be from our studio. It's fantastic.

"This is the view from our big shed dormer window! We tried to imagine it all these months, and now it's real."

That evening, Friday, July 26, we did a sunset kayak with Cape LaHave Adventures. Wow... just wow. It was another gorgeous warm night, and we headed out to paddle through the LaHave Islands; beautiful osprey diving for dinner, and pretty fishing shacks looking like paintings in the evening light.

Gavin is our guide through the LaHave Islands on this perfect summer night.

The light here is really lovely – its often quite golden at the end of the day.

There were seals popping their heads up to watch us, and we quietly paddled by a large group of them on a rock. It was a beautiful paddle, and we'll definitely go out with these guys again. Really friendly and relaxed. Gavin reminds me that we are in salt water now, so make sure to rinse out our paddles and gear – thank goodness he said that; I hadn't even thought of it. I've had my kayak paddle for some 20 years and this is the first time it's been in salt water.

The Risser construction crew close out July by getting the house wrap on and the grid for attaching shingles to the outer walls, and start erecting the walls for our second floor.

We were working away and came down for lunch to see this:

The framing for the shed dormer window. Nice!

That night, a couple neighbours came by – I guess they are really noticing our build now... and it gave me an idea to create a card with this blog link on it to deliver to all the neighbours; so they can follow along on the progress. Everyone is curious!

We had a great session with our business coaches this week and got butterflies when we realized our build will likely be done in 3 months. (Things we say now... "Time to get serious about marketing the studio space!") We spoke to Jennifer at Simple Local Social this week, and we immediately like her. She puts out a blog called Simple Local Life - all about what's happening on the South Shore... so, we will meet with her next week to start putting a plan together. I'm not strong on the Social Media end but recognize that it's the best way to get the word out to a local community.

Meanwhile, the garden is growing like crazy... the peas are over my head, and we've been harvesting them – there are few things more satisfying than growing your own food.

So delicious... and the beans are ready to harvest too.

We have several tomatoes coming, and carrots too. It's a wee garden plot, but I now know how easy it is to grow stuff here! So, next year, watch out... I'll be planting a big garden – might have to get a roadside stand.

In my last post, I mentioned that I was singing in an A Capella group. And here's a little 'problem' I have... I'm a bit of a magpie when it comes to new, shiny things... so I often jump in head first with something new and exciting, and then have regrets about not thinking it through. And perhaps I'm getting older and wiser, because this time I did not commit fully. I finished up the summer program and we performed at the mall... and it gave me time to realize that I just don't have time to dedicate to the practice, classes and performances. Well, I checked it out and enjoyed it. Now I move on with all my other music endeavours.

I spent the last weekend of July checking out live music in Mahone Bay and Lunenburg – throughout the summer, they have musicians playing in the public band stands. (Things we say now... 'We are in the process of building a studio to have musicians play house concerts, are you interested?' to which we ALWAYS get a 'hell ya, it's our favourite thing to do!')

Lacewood playing in Mahone Bay - a nice breeze coming off the bay. Sponsored by the Mahone Bay Music Association. I want our logo on that banner next year.

The bandstand in Lunenburg is a lovely old structure. My flute teacher says she often goes there at night, when out walking the dog, and will stop and stand in the bandstand and sing – the acoustics are great. I'd like to do that.

It's the end of July and we had to buy an AC unit this week – our office was becoming unbearable! We're not used to the high humidity and deep warmth here. Thank goodness for the breeze that comes up from the river – it's lovely to sit out on our deck in the shade of the big trees. And now, it's really comfortable to work, but we're still going to the beach as often as we can. Last week, we were down at the beach and the fog had rolled in – which makes it suddenly quite cool... so instead of swimming, we went for a walk, and had the joy of watching two big seals popping up in the waves – so beautiful!

On August 1st, the guys had gone as far as they could – the roof trusses are still being made, so they get an extra long weekend. We think they deserve it!

Second floor knee walls, window framing, house wrap and grid for hanging shingles... next step: roof trusses.

It's August 3 today and it's hard to believe that we arrived exactly 4 months ago on April 3. We are living a very different life and loving every minute of it. I love my yoga on Wednesday mornings on the wharf in Lunenburg, my flute lessons at Buchanans House of Music in Mahone Bay, and living so close to both of these quaint, pretty towns with excellent restaurants and pubs. We are continuing to make great business connections with other entrepreneurs, as we continue to work with all of our existing clients in Alberta, Ontario and the US – Alan is super busy on a big animation project with a client in California – our location is irrelevant.

Alan just happened to say to me, 'low tide is at 5 pm tonight, wanna go to the beach?' LOL, things that we say now... That's where we'll be this evening – heading to the beach for a swim and some boogie boarding if the waves are up.

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