Monday, September 28, 2015

We have a meeting with the Board of Director's of PROMISE, this coming Thursday, to decide whether or not to purchase one of 4 different plots available for Naomi's home. Below are some images of the plots we are considering in the village of Darivka, just blocks from where we are building Stephen's home.

Option #1 - My favorite, it's wide open and the amount of land that we need
for Naomi's home and some expansion. It's got garden space and it's a good price.
We could keep and expand from the small house in the far corner
OR take it down without much work and begin fresh and anew.

Option #2 - Has potential, good size main building that would 
need major refurbishing, but is laking a gas hook-up
that is not close so it'd be costly. Sits along the main highway so it could be loud
if we didn't put up more trees as a noise barrier. No back yard to speak of.
2 back out buildings, one quite large in size

Option #3 - A farm, right outside the village of Darivka, 
these crossroads in the foreground take you into the village.
It is 3.5 hectors, 2.8 acres to a quarter of a hector
Lots of land and therefore the cost is higher, but appropriate. 
The amount of land would allow for lots of possible expansions, but the concern
is that we'd just create another isolated community, like what they've been in all their lives
and we are trying to help them become part of community.

Option #4 - the original plot we been considering, just not certain
how honest the owner is, he's really wanting to get rid of it,
uncertain of his motivation. It's the closest to the church and Stephen's
Home plot, it's a good size, but not enough to give us space to expand.
Smaller than option #1 and twice the price. Has a illegal well on the plot, not registered.
We'd need to completely start from scratch, saving what materials we could from the structure as many
of the materials are reusable and then use the foundation and add on to the structure. 
Lots of paperwork to do all that if it's worth it. Again no gas hook-up here.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Jennifer and I went through the fruit trees, after consulting two other ladies with green thumbs, and discussed which trees needed to come out, which trees are healthy and can stay, how many apple trees we really wanted as a majority of them are apples and such. We've narrowed down the number of trees by half to allow for space for each to grow and mature. There are plans to plant other fruit trees in the central part of the garden once the construction is complete. But for now we plan to have 2 cherry trees, 4 apple trees, a pear, 2 peach, an apricot and 2 plum trees. There is a dead walnut tree that we tried, but it just didn't make it through the hot summer, so we'll replace that this fall with a new one to become the central shade tree around which the rest of the garden spreads out. The Japanese flowering tree has grown taller and the grape vines are doing great, we've got 10 of those in varying kinds that are unknown at this point, 
Sasha just knows he bough 2 of each :-). Hibiscus plants will go in this fall, possibly hollyhocks as well along the neighboring fence line. All other smaller plants and flowers are going to have to wait as this central area of the garden will be a work area through the building of Stephen's house.

Trying to discern how far from the neighbor Larisa's property line we want to have 
the back trellis with morning glories planted. 
It will form a semiprivate wall at the back of the swing.

Trying to wrap the smallest grape vine around the string supports 
so it will grow up and not out.

Measuring for the width of the the sidewalk and then the width of the trellis that 
will shade the sidewalk area leading back to the swing.

Jennifer represents the location on the new apricot tree, 
I am standing in the spot of the spot of a lilac transplant 
to fill the far corner and mark the boundary.

The plot for the therapy garden is just now beginning the transfer process of documents from the owner, Larisa, to PROMISE. We've had to wait as local offices are changing across the country to consolidate the number of little offices in villages, to one local office at the largest village in the surrounding area. That's the slow step #1 that we've had to wait on. #2 is that Larisa does not have any documentation stating that she is the owner of the property. This is typical for elderly here in Ukraine as the plot has simply been passed down from one generation to the next without question.  #3 This therefore implys that she does not have documents privatizing her plot, making the land hers as well as the house on it. That is necessary in order for us to then go through the official purchase process. Hoping that all this will process sooner than later, the Lord knows, grateful.