A whole day working on one project – it’s an interesting idea for an eight year-old to ponder, let alone undertake. We returned to the creek this morning, our biggest ideas not yet realized and the reality of the constraints and limitations beginning to set in. Plans will be re-jiggered, great ideas will be modified or discarded, and assumptions will be challenged. We have a tough day ahead, but the light at the end of the tunnel is a bonfire, barbecue, s’mores, and a mechanical fireworks project.

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Part of working is schlepping. So we schlepp the pallets down to the creek, we schlepp the tools down from the barn, we schlepp and we schlepp.IMG 1346
Daniel helps Hayden master the basics of cutting with a handsaw.

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Alonzo screws down the deck on the Kablooi walkway.

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The Falling Water house is starting to take shape as the Piki start to lash together some heavy timber pieces.

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Lauren and Jared do their share of schlepping.

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Jared drops in the final pallet in the walkway.

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Gretchen enlists Daniel to help her build a ladder.

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Gever, Connor, and Hayden build legs for the Nooi house.

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In a quiet moment, Ana gets the grit out of her wet socks.

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The Piki are relentlessly industrious as they work towards their goal of sleeping in their house – maybe even by Thursday night!

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Connor puts himself to his task and makes short work of cutting a pole down to size.

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People always wonder what we eat for lunch – here’s a grilled cheese sammy with avocado and tomato.

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And here’s a ham facial for Hayden.

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Ana eats about 50% of her body weight in grapes per day.

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If every lunch break included some time with friendly goats, we might all have lower blood pressure. Gretchen, Hayden, Josie, and Lauren make a new friend.

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Lauren and Alonzo sitting with chickens.

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Lauren and Josie sitting with chickens.

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With the cross-bars up, the Piki use heavy line to create shear strength.

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Josie and Gretchen lean back to help tighten the ropes while Hayden offers useful advice.

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Aided by the experience of spending a summer on a Maylasian bridgeworking team working in Austria, Blake scurries out on the crossbar to check for slippage on the sistered crossbars.

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Jared, Lauren, and Alonzo test out their newly constructed load-bearing wall unit.

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Connor and Gever discuss various solutions to a tricky bit of bracing.

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Portrait of a Tinkerer: Connor contemplates his workmanship.

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Alonzo has built himself a mighty fine chair.

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There is, of course, more schlepping to do. Josie and Ana carry another piece of decking down the creek to the Piki house.

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With the deck complete and the walls tightened, the unfinished Piki house is open for tours.

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The low deck height gives easy access to the dam.

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Jared sets about plugging a major leak.

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Josie and Ana brace a pole.

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Connor locks in two more corner braces while Theo looks on in amazement.

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Portrait of Three Tinkerers: a ride back up to the barn with Alonzo, Blake, and Hayden.

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Connor, Jared, and Alonzo have been working on a secret go-cart project in the free-build time.

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While it has no steering, it does roll in a remarkably straight manner.

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The tinkerers are pretty excited when they discover that “mechanical fireworks” means a pocketful of LED’s that they can attach to whatever they please.

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Yes, very excited.

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The LED-on-a-rope design turns out to be irresistible. Lauren attaches all eight of her lights to a single rope.

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Then, it’s down to the picnic tables for barbecue. Ana explains her big idea to Gever, “I’m going to put all my lights in my hand and throw them up in the air like fireworks!”

Sophia’s slingshot tube cannon is a big hit with everyone, and she delights in putting everything from LEDs to corn chips in the launch pocket.

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After barbecue we settle by the fire for s’mores.

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And some LED light-painting.

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Then, because it is Fourth of July, we bring out the sparklers.

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