My grandpa, Edwin Haugen, grew up on a farm by Menno. We called him Pa.
Pa and Ma moved to Sioux Falls when my dad was a senior in high school (Washington). Pa worked at Old Home Bread until retirement, where he then worked as the maintenance man for three apartment buildings on Spring Ave.
During retirement Pa had a workshop where he was always working on projects. I never paid too much attention to them as a kid because he was one of the first people I knew who had cable television, which interested me more. I'd stay over at his house and watch all-star wrestling late at night and eat sardines.
One of the things Pa built was birdhouses. This one in particular was a replica of the house he grew up in. He must have built it 40-45 years ago. My dad then had it on a post by his garden on the farm by Canton.
When Dad died, it was one of the few things I took, in retrospect not even really sure why. It's been in my garden for fourteen years as the home to more wasps than birds. It started looking pretty rough a couple years ago, but just now decided to bring it in the garage with hopes of making it my winter project to fix up.
Trouble is, I'm not much of a fixer-upper, don't have the tools or the aptitude. My grandpa did, my dad did, but I don't. Somehow that gene got lost on a gravel road between Menno and Canton.
As I took the roof off and looked inside, I was surprised at the detail. There are working doors on hinges, with doorknobs. There's trim around the windows and doors, inside and out. There were even curtains on the windows, but they've since rotted away. There's also a small porch with a roof you can see on the bottom photo.
My goal is to mostly just clean it up and repaint it. But it's going to need a new roof and that will definitely test my abilities and patience.
Stay tuned. If you never see a post on the finished project, you'll know how the story ended.