Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Lots going on

It's been a while since I've blogged, I know. So much has been going on. Life is a whirlwind, and it's hard to keep up sometimes, but it's all been good things.

To begin with, the guy with the backhoe who was going to help has a full time job, and he just hadn't been able to get out to help us, so we decided to do it the old-fashioned way - brute force! Well....and a little help from chains attached to pickups and such. :) In one weekend, we had the thing as leveled as it could get (only 1 interior wall standing, surrounded by debris. Then began the massive job of sorting out the stuff that could be burned and carrying it to the burn pile, and putting the rest into the big dumpster we rented. What a job! Shingles had to be scraped off roof decking, insulation had to be pulled out, carpet, toilets, bathtub, sinks - just anything you could think of that comes in a house that isn't wood. Still, lots and lots of burning as well! Last weekend a neighbor came over with his bobcat and helped push everything still left together into a pile that can be burned in one big massive fire. His help was a great blessing, except for one thing...he accidentally ran over the septic tank and crushed the lid. Thankfully, the neighbor across the street says the same thing happened to him, and he was able to make a fix for it. The only thing regulated in this county is septic. Our septic is the old-fashioned kind with a leach field, which the county will allow us to keep, provided the repairs don't exceed a certain dollar amount. In that case, we would have to replace it with a new aerobic septic system, which is more expensive and more costly to maintain. We are praying that doesn't happen.

Speaking of septic, life without one is difficult. For a while we've had the use of a friend's camper, which has a holding tank we can empty from time to time. Right now they are using their camper, and we are feeling the lack of septic! We found a cheap camping toilet which utilizes plastic bags (fun, fun!) that we have set up inside the mobile home (remember, no utilities in there!), and that is working for now. It sure does make us appreciate the little things in life, like flushing toilets and being able to take a shower!

And that brings up another topic...water. We finally have it! Jeremy got the idea (being desperate makes you creative) to disconnect the pipe from the water meter to the house (that is no longer standing) and install a water spigot right at the meter. And that brings up all sorts of redneck ideas....like taking a 100 ft. hose that wasn't quite long enough, and attaching it to a 25 ft. water hose, and attaching THAT to the camper. Voila! Running water. Well, except right now we don't have the camper....so we wash our dishes the REAL redneck way - in the front yard with the water hose. :)

The visit to the water company was an experience in itself. OK, we live in a city of 360,000 people right now, and we are moving to a town of 13,000. The water company boasted of now serving some 1,300 customers, and consisted of 5 employees. I'm not joking - 5! Only 2 of the employees are the service technicians that do repairs and such. So, one of those 2 guys came over to the property to unlock the smallest padlock I'd probably ever seen, and remove it from the meter so that we'd have water. Jeremy offered to save them time and just cut the thing off, but she smiled and said we'd get in real trouble for doing something like that. :) Water is expensive out there, too - all the more reason to conserve, I suppose.

I also learned how to patch holes in the walls. Jeremy was working on another project and gave me very brief instructions on how to use the tape and the joint compound for the mobile home. Folks, I had NO idea how much of that stuff to put on. But I figured it had to look better than the holes, so I ended up using up the whole container (we had lots of holes!). Fortunately, our neighbor, who turned out to be a painter, came over about half-way through my job and fixed what I'd done, and did the rest for me. So, no more holes in the walls!

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