Well, we saw Dewey off around 6 am. Back to Jackson to gather the last minute materials and off to Arkansas to finish the last leg of this job. There is a possibility that he will be back earlier than we thought, for good, but we'll see how that goes. The 'official' end of the Arkansas hospital is like June 26th, but the last inspections and approvals begin next week.
It will be nice having him back home soon. Granted, he's been gone about 8 months, give or take a handful of days, and really that isn't a long range of time in the grand scheme of things...but HE BELONGS HOME ;o) Not only do we miss him terribly, but he can't lead when he isn't here. It's just not something that works long term. We got off to a good start back when he left, but it's just not the same with me filling him in on happenings here. He needs to know and see the joys and trials for himself, first-hand.
Yes, we prayed for this job and the travel, and no I don't have any true regrets, just ponderings really. We did it. We managed without him home, but that simply doesn't change the fact that he belongs at home. We've never had time away -- sure, overnight while I had a baby or something, and he did go fishing for 3 days once. Aside from that, even if worked near 3 hours away from home, he still came home every night. He did that week or two job here last year in Knoxville, and he wasn't coming home then, but this was so long. Just so long.
Our week at a glance...
We have a water leak to repair. Picked up the materials yesterday after driving hither and yon trying to find the 1/2" tee we needed. Goodnesss, everyone had 1/4 and 3/4 inch -- we finally found something we think will work well enough, in the 1/2 inch we needed, at Home Depot. Nothing at TSC, Scruggs or Lowe's. Ugh.
We need water this Wednesday. And, it's time to rotate out of use several of my original water jugs now. A good half of them are pushing 4 years old now. Take note -- we have those large water cooler jugs in the blue plastic whatever...they make a good 4 years before they need to be recycled to other uses. We'll save one for change and other miscellaneous monies, and I may even cut the tops off about halfway down and use the others for planters as we rotate them off the schedule.
Last trip for water, we discovered that a couple of the 3-gal jugs we use developed leaks. We have scrubbed and shampooed the carpet in the van I don't know how many times, but let it get the slightest moisture and WHEW! It smells like a barn of hay and critters in there on a hot day! Ahh, country living...a van that smells like old wet goat :o( You just know you a country family when that happens :o)
Tractor tire still needs to come off so I can get it "vulcanized" (I suppose that's the term...they are going to take 2 sections of rubber and melt/mold them inside and out over the side wall where the air leak is.
Once it's up and running, I have 8 yards of red sand to work into the garden, the we will grab the trailer and go for good barnyard scavenging to add more organics to that pathetic soil. I'd like the disc on the tractor to be the mule...not me with the hand tiller!
That sand -- we had an 8 yard dump brought in Saturday morning, and there is another coming this morning. Of course, despite our best efforts, he wasn't able to make that loaded dump truck finish its trek all the way to the barn :o( He got stuck in the mire that is still my second driveway and yard. Talk about a mess. But, all day yesterday we were playing work mule here....shoveling the sand into 2 large yard wagons and dragging them to the barn to spread. The center is totally filled and packed with sand now. The goats are thrilled with their new-found footing as we come and go from the milking area. We are tickled with our footing in there as well. It's a low area (why there is a barn there, I don't know!) and with all the recent rains this season, it was like walking over a saturated sponge in there. We will have rock brought in later -- when July comes and the ground out here has no choice but to dry out to support a full and heavy dump truck.
We laid out the sand on the second drive, where the truck was stuck. And, we started bringing it up around the house here as well. I swear, any other season, you'd look around and think we were fairly level out here. Give it a few weeks of rains almost daily and see where all that water stays and you'll begin to wonder if we aren't just a low spot everywhere.
First part of the new geography books arrived...and I didn't even pay for the quick shipping! Just looking over the Trail Guide to U.S. Geography, I can tell we will really have fun with it. Of course, you know me...I've read through it already, but we aren't going to follow it verbatum. Being summer, and temps inching rather quickly into the upper 90's and above, I thought we'd prefer starting in the middle with the Southern States.
First stop on the 11 week trail (we'll do one state each work) will be North Carolina. I've been gathering information already and am putting together a list of what materials we'll need.
We will work science into the geography lessons by reading about native wildlife, plants, general climate, etc. There are tons of ideas we can study about --
The Outer Banks and reefs and shoals
pirates of the coastline -- namely, Blackbeard, as his base was at Ocracoke Island there.
The Wright Brothers famous flight at Kill Devil Hill near Kitty Hawk
The Lost Colony of Roanoke, the first English baby, Virginia Dare, and the Freedman's Colony
Cape Hatteras Lighthouse (the largest in the nation made from brick) as well as just lighthouses in general... what is the name of that book about the girl and the lighthouse????
Civil War notes, including ships such as The Monitor and The Merrimack
various Native American tribes of the area, including information about the Trail of Tears, The Qualla Boundary, and the Great Smoky Mountains in general.
There is plenty to fill a week, even two, on most states. I'm planning to start at just a week per state, but who knows -- if we are really enjoying things, we will certainly stretch it out! I'll share some links later for things we have already found to use.
While clearing the center of the barn I started chopping vines and honeysuckle from the front of the barn -- should have probably left them there, could be they are holding the barn wall up. Should have left them there because I knew most of it was poison oak and ivy :o( Now, you would think, common sense (which I was lacking by working on those vines in the first place!) would lead one to think that I'd be rashed out on my arms, my hands, maybe even my legs from being in my dress. Am I rashed out in any of those places? Nope. Not even discolored skin. But my face -- now that is another thing altogether! I am puffed up and look like a red grape fixing to pop. I washed thoroughly and even washed with some alcohol to clear the oils up, but no deal. Just call me Puff Mama :o(
Well -- I need to start settling the day work here so I can hit town and have the brakes and shocks done this morning. And hit the pharmacy for some Ivarest and Benadryl. I don't have anything herbal that I know of to help with the puffy and the itchy that covers my face. Could aways apply some calamine...but I'm a big fan of pink...
Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls.
Blogs I Love to Visit...
- 5 Acres & A Drean
- A Pondering Heart
- Ask Jackie @ Backwoods Home
- Bateman Homestead
- Bible Version Comparison Chart
- Busy B Homemaker
- Caffeinated Homestead
- Choosing Voluntary Simplicity
- Down To Earth Blog
- Fruit of Her Hands blog
- Granny Miller blog
- Growing up Herbal
- Half a Hundred Acre Wood blog
- He Sows, She Sews
- He Sows, She Sews
- Herbal Academy of New England Blog
- Homestead Honey blog
- It All Matters Mom blog
- Just Plain Marie
- My Journey to Separation
- Nourishing Days blog
- One and a Half Acre Homestead
- Outside the Box Homeschool blog
- Ozark Mountain Family Homestead
- Reflections from Drywood Creek
- Sabbath Mood Homeschool
- Small Farm Girl
- Simple Green Frugal Coop
- Snowfall Academy blog
- Strangers & Pilgrims on Earth
- Sufficient Graze Farm blog
- The Caffeinated Homestead
- The Crunchy Chicken
- The Nerdy Farmwife
- The Prudent Homemaker
- The Unplugged Family
- The Wild Garden
- This Life I live
- Vaccination Information website
- Vintage Remedies DIY & Articles
- Wellness Mama
- Wood Cookstove Cooking blog