My executive officer Chris, is a pretty handy fellow, another jack of all trades master of none like myself. He is also a self starter. I can ask him to complete a task and he will with or without my supervision. Once I am sure that he understands the verbal hieroglyphics I use to replace English, once I am sure our ducks are on the same page. I can relax having confidence in his abilities. That is the quality of good XO.
We have the original coal burning fireplace insert that came with this beautiful old lady of a house. It has been in our backyard ever since we bought her around 25 years ago. We don’t want a fireplace inside this house made of fat lighter for several reasons. FIreplaces, coal or wood, are inefficient heating systems with most of your warm air going up the chimney. They are dirty, polluting your air like it was the fifties when it seemed like everyone chain smoked inside. This is a coal burner, the worst offender. I don’t know if one can even buy coal in small amounts anymore. And, let’s face facts, it never gets that cold here anyway. And reason number one... we live in a house made of what is essentially fat lighter. Any questions?
I am a big proponent of repurposing. It leaves a smaller carbon footprint than recycling and is fun challenge that can save you money. Anything can be repurposed into an art project, that’s no challenge. I like to take an item that is destined for the landfill and turn it into something useful, used frequently, a one of a kind head turner that I could not buy new at any price. Quite a tall order, and I think Chris, along with my, also smart, son Donovan, helped me to realize this latest trash into treasure conversion. We turned an old piece of cast iron that had been cast away into a center piece of our Gr00vyLånd outdoor kitchen. We turned that old fireplace insert into a fabulous outdoor charcoal grill and oven.
Here’s where Chris comes in, here’s where two heads are better than one. I had thought about making a grill out of that heavy relic for quite some time, but I only envisioned it as an open grill, good for hot dogs and hamburgers maybe steak. Chris saw potential beyond that. He fashioned an old sheet metal road sign, a true repurposing project should not require a trip to home depot, attached it to the back side and taking the cover that I was going to use as decoration turned it into an oven/grill suitable for cooking chicken, pork, slow coked bbq, even baking a cake (with the help of an old oven thermometer).
The burgers we cooked last night on its shakedown bar-b-que were fantastic. It would be impractical if were a large family since it is rather small, but there’s usually no more than four of us at any given time eating together. It’s size and lack of features such as variable heights and cleaning access might pose a problem to frequent cook-outers, but since we like to eat low on the food chain and don’t grill as much as most it should serve our purposes well. Plus It looks really cool and didn’t cost us a dime. Didn’t cost us a dime unless you count the salary we pay Chris. And that is money well spent, because a good second in command is hard to find and worth every penny.
PS here is the hierarchy of command at the AndyVerse.
Kath-a-Leen The Garden Queen - Commander-in-Chief
Andy - Full Bird Colonel
Chris - Major
Donovan - Classified
Nancy-Laurel - Civilian Advisor
just say yes!
meet Andy Ward King, a professional musician and artist until a diagnosis of parkinons dsease at age 49 forced him into an early retirement., he now uses his music, his art along with the whimsical world he has created in this blog as therapy to ( as he puts it ) outsmart his brain and make the daily battles with parkinson’s a little bit easier, to give him that all important reason to get up on the morning, to make his life worth living. Andy has learned how to say NO to gving up \ NO to depression and apathy \ NO to following willingly the road of decline that stretches before him. he learned that to say no to all of these things all one has to do is say yes. Andy has learned to just say YES to life/\\