May 23rd, 2009
i just found your side and it invited me to drop you a line.
We bought the land up on laguna espejo so we are more or less your neighbours now. I would really appreciate to meet you one day in the near future. We want to build a loghouse from september on because now the winter is here and it is impossible to do anything up there.
Maybe if you interested in, we could get in contact.
So far, best greetings and have a nice weekend.
Angi and Guido
May 27th, 2008
Eloísa turned one on May 7 and so far she seems to have thoroughly enjoyed her first year on Earth. She has skipped crawling altogether and is learning to walk, still with assistance, but getting more sure-footed with every step. She loves music and starts “dancing” as soon as a good beat gets going. She seems especially interested in the Blues, with Popa Chubby being among her favorites.
She has also learned a few words; she says “agua” when she wants something to drink, “pan” (or something along those lines) when she’s hungry, and “papa” whenever I walk in the house or room. She also mimics the dogs she hears barking outside, as well as the Austral Parakeets that come into town to eat the remaining apples at this time of year. She laughs a lot, too, which is a good sign, and still likes to sleep all night long, though she prefers to stay up later than she probably should. She’s all but given up the milk bar at this point and enjoys eating out at the Highchair Restaurant. They serve yogurt, fruit and all sorts of good homemade food there. She eats it all without complaint and even tries to share it now and then. She’s a generous girl.
Eloísa has enjoyed visits from her grandparents and aunt Anne at different times during her first year and is always sad when those visits come to a close. She has also received many wonderful gifts from extended family and friends, and though her parents have fallen a bit behind in some very over due thank you notes, she wants everybody to know that she has gotten much use and enjoyment out of all the clothes, books, toys and keepsakes that she has received.
Soon, Eloísa will have to start thinking about spending some time in day care, if for no other reason than to start making friends other than her parents. We sure don’t want her to burn out from boredom before she realizes that there are many cooler people her own age out there. She does have a few friends already, but is still trying to figure out why they only appear randomly from time to time. I think she’d rather have a regular schedule where she and her buddies can get together and pick up where they left off the previous time, plotting against the big people and whatnot.
Don’t forget to click on the image to open the photo gallery of Eloísa at One.
April 16th, 2008
Now that fall is here, I should probably recap the summer advances. Most of what we accomplished this summer consisted of things remaining from our overestimating last year’s objectives. Still, it fells like we got a lot done, or so says my back, which is getting a good rest now. We got the shelter built and now have a more permanent camp base at the lake. I hauled the old tents to a dumpster; two seasons of wind, sun and rain had wrecked them beyond repair. The new shelter has already withstood some nice winds with no problem, but it is fairly well protected on two sides. Cristian and his cousin helped me with that project. All the wood was cut from dead coigue or a couple of tepa trees we felled (the tepa was only used where it won’t get wet as it is more prone to rot than coigue).
We also put the finishing touches on both docks. I actually had to add a whole second level to the base camp dock, as I had misunderestimated how high the lake would rise (misunderestimation seems to be the common denominator in general). I had to cut up 15 more beams plus a bunch of floor boards, but there were a couple logs left over from other things that provided all the lumber. One of the next objectives will be to build steps from the dock to part way up the hill. Mom got that project underway.
We finally got a pickup truck. It was sorely needed and immediately proved itself useful. It’s a 2001 Toyota Hilux. With it, I was able to bring a lot of firewood back to town for the winter and it also greatly facilitated the construction of the first four bridges. After finishing the shelter and docks, the bridges were next on the agenda. I was trying to figure out how I could co-opt/trick someone into helping me with that when the phone rang one day. It was my buddy Patricio, who did our survey last year. The owner of the company’s son had just got into town and was looking for an internship with a startup tourism project. To make a long story short, he plans to do an internship with us next season but in the meantime volunteered to help me with things like bridge construction, firewood hauling and whatever general hard, manual labor I needed help with. Talk about a gift horse. We got four bridges done in a couple of weeks!
We had amazing weather all summer (at least, from January through March) and it is still fairly good half way into April, though a bit overcast most of the time. Didn’t do much fishing this year, as the late afternoon “return trolling to the car” was replaced by “return with load of firewood to the truck”.� Now, I’m resting up in town for a while and focusing on other priorities for the moment.
Click on the photo to open the gallery in a new window.
September 17th, 2007
A lot of things going on. For those who don’t know, we decided to buy a lot outside of Coyhaique to build a house closer to town. Work still moves forward at the lake, but there is a ton of stuff to do before we can think about building or living out there, and Elo�sa will need to be closer to schools, friends, etc. So, we plan to build a place in El Claro, about 5km from Coyhaique and right off the road to the lake. It’s got a great view of Cerro McKay and also has a lot of native trees (notro, �irre, coigue, etc). Our friend, Carolina Fernandez, is helping us design a place. Her specialty is “bio-climactic” architecture, especially straw bale construction, so we’ve been thinking of building that way. There are other straw bale houses in the area and they all seem to work great. We’ll use post and beam construction for the structure and the straw bale walls will be non-load supporting. We’ll try to finish them smoothly so that the place looks more modern than rustic. I’ve been cutting up posts and beams with Muttel out on our land for the past 3 weeks or so and we’ve got a good start.
Shawn Strange, an old college friend from American University, was here to visit. We got reconnected through Wendy after Shawn ended up doing a stint at Palmer Station, Antarctica. She’s in Santiago for a year now, and came down to visit and help out at the land.
Elo�sa is growing fast and is already 4 months old. She is very sociable, doesn’t complain much (unless she is being ignored while she thinks she should be part of whatever is going on), and makes all sorts of noises and sounds. She has pretty good coordination and studies things intently. She loves the guitar and tries to play it with me after studying my hands for a while.
Click on the image for a hodge podge of pictures from the past three months or so.
May 23rd, 2007
So, Eloísa is already over two weeks old. Time has gone fast and she has gained half a kilo, about a pound. She enjoys fits of screaming in between bouts of sleeping (mostly during the day), feeding and staring at the ceiling. I can lose hours just watching her multiple expressions, most of which she hides as soon as I point the camera at her.
She had her first checkup today and all is well except for an irritated throat which won her some evil medicine drops and a new pacifier. We don’t really plan to lend her the pacifier too often, but even the pediatrician agreed that in her case, or at least until her throat clears up, it’s a pretty good thing to have around. Ironically, I found out that the game of jumping frog, which she stops crying to take part in, is probably one of the things that irritates her throat if played too soon after feeding. All that milk comes part-way back up. Oops, I probably could have figured that out on my own if I’d thought about.
Claudia is healing up and is getting around without much problem, though she still has a way to go before claiming herself fully recovered.
Here are some photos of Eloísa. As always, click on the image to open the gallery…
Oh, by the way, in Spanish, “Eloísa” is spelled with an accent on the “i”. We don’t care if anyone else spells it that way, but I just thought I’d mention it in case it comes out as jibberish on anyone’s computer. You can let me know and I’ll just spell it the Amerkuhn way.