Date: May 6th, 2009
We have been trying to keep you all updated with the construction of the Great Room addition to the Main Lodge. But, while that has been going on, we’ve mentioned the indoor arena as well as a few other smaller projects. As I walked around this morning, capturing photos of everything happening around the ranch on this beautiful day, I realized that I should give you all a real feel for the scene. Maybe it’s because it’s all coming together finally and the pieces are falling into place. Or maybe it’s just because the weather is now allowing us to get some of the projects really going. Once you read this list, you’ll understand why Ben and Dace have a glazed look on their faces most days and why I’m working from home as much as possible! Don’t worry, these projects are all nearing completion and are on schedule to be done June 1. Here’s the list:
1) Great Room addition to the Main Lodge- you’ve all heard about this one, but it is looking REALLY good right now.
2) Outdoor kitchen and dining area- brick oven, major grilling space, patio seating right next to the….
3) Enlarged Lake Suzanne- ok, so we needed some dirt to build terrain around the Indoor riding arena (next up) so we decided to make the pond a bit larger so people aren’t hooking each other as they practice their casting.
4) Indoor Riding Arena- you may wonder why I haven’t written much about it. Well, not to knock Californians (I’m one!) but these guys were a little sensitive to working in our winter weather and seemed to take more snow days than work days. But a few pointed words from key people (aka, they guy writing the checks) has gotten them to pick up the pace just a tad, and buy a few pairs of mittens and hats to keep them going. Although it will be enclosed by summer, it wont be ready to use for riding until later in the season, but the point of the arena is really for winter riding more than summer riding and for the summer we’ll have….
5) Outdoor riding arena- this isn’t quite as exciting but the fencing needed to be replaced since we’ve had too many steers jump out during team penning so there is now new fencing and a nice chaparral gate to boot.
6) Staff housing- we needed to finish building out a couple staff rooms in the Parlor. So, since we had NOTHING else going on, we figured we’d that knocked out this spring.
7) Sand bathroom- you may have read about this surprise remodel early in the spring after a water leak ruined the floor. Bill has the tile and granite in, the walls painted and now the plumbing and light fixtures are going in tomorrow.
8 ) Corral space- remember that old hay barn that fell down last winter. Well, we’re taking advantage of that space to expand our holding pen for the horses, so dirt is being moved, rock walls built and fences will go up next.
9) Generator- I know, this really gets you going. But, look at the bright side (pardon the electricity pun) that now if the power goes out we’ll still have lights and water. What can I say, it’s the little details that make this place so great.
10) Revised pathways to cabin- we’ve been eyeballing this for a while and are finally doing it (again, since we have NOTHING else to do). The new pathway system will give each cabin more privacy as the main walkway will be moved to the other side of the stream.
11) Yes, there is a #11. The Dining room, Kitchen and Staff room remodel. Hey, it’s kind of like painting a house. Once you get started, it just seems so easy to add another room, and then another, and then another.
This may seem daunting to you, but with the exception of the Arena, it’s all on track to be done before any of you show up for the summer. The landscapers are coming next week to get the outside areas looking spiffy, lay sod, plant trees, arrange rocks, you name it.
It’s exciting to start seeing all these projects come together and be almost done. But, in the meantime, it’s a bit of a zoo around here!
With all that news of chaos, Kelli and I are going to go out and scout a good spot for our Wild Yoga….details to follow.