Today in my walk along Capisic Brook, I took photos of ferns, hoping to identify the different species I noticed. When I got home, and tried to compare these with fern guides online, I realized it was much more complicated than I realized. I don’t know the names of any of these yet. If you do, let me know! But here are three, four, or five different varieties I found. The differences between one and two and five are very clear to me, related to the shapes of the leaves, and how they are divided. But the differences between two, three and four seem more subtle, and three and four may well be the same. So much to learn about the plants of the natural world! Can anyone help me out by identifying any of these?
It is amazing how books on a book shelf can induce a feeling of home. After a pretty busy few weeks (or shall I say–months?), I had this weekend off, and filled it with resting and nesting. I was able to figure out an arrangement for bookcases in the living room, and then unpack some boxes of books–I brought my best old favorites for this spot. We also have bookcases in the basement, in the area that eventually will be a guest nook, and I arranged those bookcases and put some of my other books there. That space is still filled with boxes though–but my fantasy is that it will be ready for summer guests.
I also helped Margy get started in her office, which doubles as the music room–unpacking and shelving all the CDs and LPs. She has quite a few recordings from all stages of music history, including a Victrola from her grandmother (in our living room), vinyl albums, cassette tapes, and CDs. I’ve moved on to digital mp3s, but she preserves our music history!
In between my frenzies of unpacking, I fell into long naps, or binged on Parenthood on Netflix. I cooked curried chicken one night, and mowed the front lawn with our push mower one morning. It has felt so restorative to be focused on domesticity for these few days.
The flowers finally opened on the trees on the side of our house. Our neighbor has two similar trees but her flowers are pink. She said hers were Japanese cherry, so we were assuming ours were too, but now that we see the flowers are different, we don’t know. Anyone know what these are?
I love Friday the 13th, and today was the lucky day we began to have solar panels generating our electricity. This morning the solar inverter was wired up, then electronically awakened, and it communicated with the 31 panels and optimizers on our roof, and voila! we are live!
So all the panels were completely up on the roof by the end of Tuesday, and the electrician was supposed to come this morning with the installer to hook everything up and get it started. But he mistakenly went to another job, and our installer was only able to do the internet hookup. I was so frustrated after being so excited about this being “the day.” And it was such a lovely bright sunny day too. Now they are supposed to come tomorrow morning. Meanwhile, I did the paperwork for Central Maine Power to authorize our power generation and net-metering.
And on a different note entirely, I took a walk Wednesday to Evergreen Cemetery and saw the baby owls again, and also this lovely great blue heron fishing in the pond. I intercepted the Maine Audubon warbler walk and met some birds I hadn’t known before, though my small camera was unable to get photos. But I did get better at shifting from naked-eye view to binocular view without losing sight of the birds. I saw a black and white warbler, a chestnut-sided warbler, a blue-headed vireo, and a northern parula. On Monday I saw and heard a wood thrush.
Maybe the blue heron can offer me something in the way of patience. It just kept walking around the pond, looking for fish I presume, and then being still and quiet as it watched and waited.
Meanwhile a conduit was built to bring the cables from the Solar Panels down the side of the house, into the basement to a junction box, and then to the Inverter, which converts Direct Current from the Solar Panels into Alternating Current for use.
Today is day two of solar panel installation, and they’ve been working on setting up the optimizers. These will attach one to each panel, and enable it to function separately from the other panels, so that if one goes out or gets shaded they don’t all go out like a string of Christmas tree lights when one goes bad. We will be able to track the performance of each panel via a website. They are also creating the electrical wiring and its protective casing that will go from the roof to the basement inverter panel.
Yesterday, the framing for our solar panels was attached to the roof, with flashing to protect against any leaking. And we had a lovely sunny day for it. The installers take the weekend off, and return on Monday to do the next steps.
Today is the day! Our solar panel installation begins. It somehow seems fitting that it begins on a new moon day. A few days ago, the solar panels were delivered to our back yard.
Then Central Maine Power came to install a second meter–one records what we use and the other records what we send to the grid.
Yesterday afternoon, the scaffolding was set up so they are ready to go this morning.
The installation generally takes about three days, including putting framing and panels on the roof and the electrical work inside. It is hard to believe it is finally happening after all these months! I promise to post more pictures as the work progresses.