Wednesday, July 30, 2014


Whenever there was building going on at the French Farm, "On Construction", would ring out, usually from Bruce's mouth. Two years ago there was a bad hail storm that hit the MN cabin, the shingles were 30 years old and Bruce knew it was only a matter of time before there would be some leaks. Last summer he measured the roof and took those measurements to Marcus Lumber and let Bob figure the steel for it. Since we have discovered roofing steel, asphalt shingles are a thing of the past! Late summer Bruce hauled the load to the cabin and wrapped it in a tarp for the winter, just waiting for summer. 

I dreaded the job!

Two weeks ago he was meeting his brother in law, John, at the cabin for a little fishing so Bruce went a day early to get a start on the roofing. I hated that he was up there by himself but he bought a safety harness and said he wouldn't do the 'dangerous' side, a two story drop to the ground, until John was around to call 911.

Now THAT was comforting!

I just had to have faith that Bruce was smart enough to not do something stupid and later the second day I received a picture from John. "Look what I found when I got to the cabin!"

Bruce is standing triumphantly, tethered to the tree, on his new roof. By the time they left, half the cabin roof was done and they even got to fish.

And they ate fish which was even better since we have a LOT in our freezer.

Shortly after coming home from the cabin, Bruce played his weekly golf game and then we lit out for his birthday weekend in WI. When does this man have time to farm?? We had only been home a few days, I was just settling into my routine when Bruce broached the subject of returning to the cabin to finish the roofing. He wanted to get it done before the next round of fishing trips so they didn't have to interrupt their fishing to work on the roof. I was slow to warm to the idea, (whining), "But we just got home." Bruce was patient, planted the seed and waited for me to see the brilliance of his plan.

"We will only be gone three days."
"The weather is supposed to be nice." 
(It's a beast to be on a roof with temps in the 90's or above, trust me, I've been there.)

I lined up my animal caretakers, made Mollie and Murphy promise to be good dogs and we left for MN Saturday afternoon. Bruce was on the roof before the truck was even unloaded.

I climbed on the roof to get a shot of the swamp, this is the very high point of the roof and I didn't have a safety harness on.

Saturday morning I was rudely awakened at 7 AM by the sound of drilling, yes, Bruce was back on the roof. I grabbed a cup of iced coffee and went to help. This is what it takes to put a roof on.
Insect repellent, lots of it! Iced coffee in the Twins mug, water in the yellow mug, leather gloves and a chair to sit on and book to read during the down times.

Lots of DeWalt tools and battery chargers and batteries.

The safety harness clip securely fastened to the tree, Bruce did not spare any screws on this, it was the only thing between him and a two story drop to the ground!

Our scaffolding and work table....

....and music, always music.

Let the building begin!

I found my niche, I can drill holes....

....cut tin, it's really fun with the power shears.....

...and lift sheets to the roof.

Where Bruce is waiting with a smile, always smiling.

He's a master with the grinder, cutting a hole for the 'stink pipe.'

He shows off his walking the peak skills while putting on the ridge cap.

After two days, a trip to Alexandria for 8 more sheets of tin when we found we were short, a trip to Sauk Centre to get a cover for the sewer pipe when Bruce discovered he left the one home he bought, lots of sweat and a few cuts, we finished!!

Time to crack open the bubbly and chilled glasses, we drink nothing but the best!


After a shower, a short rest, we put the boat in Cedar Lake and went fishing, the first cast with the Blue Bruiser, it never fails Bruce.

We loaded the pickup with as much stuff as we could carry Sunday night and headed out early Monday morning for home.

Bruce is going to have to go fishing a few more times this year to bring everything back that we hauled up there.

There's no place like home.

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