Monday, April 18, 2011

One of my favorite things...

I've had quite a few people ask me about my kindle cover recently so I thought I would blog about it.  I've had my kindle since November 2009 so I have the older version, but I'm sure the cover for the new version works just as well.
One of the things I LOVE about my cover is that it is splashproof.  I love this cover because I read each night while I take a bath and occasionally read while we are at the beach.  The cover keeps water and sand from getting to my kindle.  The cover is great.  I can't say enough good things about it.
As you can see, the front, all of the buttons, connections, etc are covered.  I never take my kindle out of this case.  My kindle looks just as new as it did the day I received it.  When I need to plug it in to charge it I just undo the velcro on the bottom and plug it in.

I purchased the cover from amazon.  Here is the link to my version of the cover:

Here is the latest generation version.  As you can see it is a little different.
Tirim splash-proof case

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

I can hardly wait!

As most of you know, one of my dreams is to one day own my own chickens.  I love them!  I can't wait to go searching for their eggs and I can't wait to have homegrown organic chicken for dinner.  I know....I don't know if I will be able to do the latter, but it sure would be nice to eat my own homegrown meat.

Anyway, Kevan and I went to a store tonight and when we walked in....I heard CHIRPING!  You should've seen me.  I ran right to them.  I was soooooo excited!  Look how cute they are!!

They had 4 tubs (or troughs) of chickens and 1 tub of duckies!  I was in heaven.  I'm sure everyone in the store thought I was crazy taking pictures of their chickens.  Yes, I'm a city-person who is a wanna-be country woman!  I was so happy to see them all with their little beaks and cute little wings flapping.  I love them!

Here are the duckies.  I almost had my husband convinced we should get a few.  Although, I wouldn't want them at the pond because I can't see it from the house.  Make sure to click on the picture to make it bigger because you have to see their cuddliness up close!  I love them!

I can't wait until we are here full-time and can go purchase our chickens and ducks.  I can't wait until the day we build our coop and get it ready for my "ladies"!  Have I said how much I love them??

Monday, April 11, 2011

Our First Farm Babies!

Well, we had our first farm babies born today!  It is a pretty funny story actually.  Both Kevan and I were on conference calls in different rooms.  We both saw something out the window and noticed that 2 people were walking into our barn.  It was kind of scary at first because you wonder why someone is on your property and why would they be going into an old barn.

Then, Kevan walked out there to see what was going on.  I looked out the window and saw a teenage girl run out of the barn and down our driveway to the neighbor house across the street.  I asked to be excused from my call for a few minutes.  Then, I sped out the other door to make sure Kevan was okay.  I got really scared when I saw someone in black come out of one of the rooms toward him.  Well, he told me everything was fine and to go back to my conference call.

Turns out the neighbor girls noticed blood on their dog earlier in the day and then they followed her to our barn to see what was up.  Turns out she had 6 puppies under one of the floors of our barn.  I wasn't able to take a picture of where they were because it was so far under the barn, but I did get a picture once they were out (the neighbors came and got them).  Look, their eyes weren't even open yet!

Here is the mama (Casey).  She is a really good dog.  She follows us around and rolls around on our porch so we pet her belly.  She has two different colored yes which is a little freaky, but she is sweet.

I'm sad the babies aren't in our barn anymore.  I can't wait until we have another animal in the barn!  Someday!  Once we are here full time.  :o)

Sunday, April 10, 2011

An Update On Our Demolition Project

This weekend, Kevan and I decided to rent a belt sander so we could work on the wood floors in the master bedroom.  The belt sander cost about $42 a day (plus the cost of sandpaper), but since they are not open on Sundays we got a day for free. 

Once we made it home with the sander I realized we were a little early on the rental.  We still had a lot of the carpet still on the floor.

If you remember my earlier post when we pulled up the 2 sets of carpeting and pad there was padding leftover that was glued down.  We pulled up the rest of the carpet/padding and started working on the pad/glue.  We had to sit and scrape all of the black pad and glue from the floor before we could sand.  It is hard work.  Saturday night my arms felt like they were going to fall off.  One word...Ibuprofen!  :o)

While I scraped Kevan started using the sander.  You would think it was easy to use a sander, but it isn't.  It is hard on your arms.  Also, you don't push pull it.  The harder it is to pull the better the sanding job.  Also, you CANNOT let it sit on a certain area or it will sand too much and create burn lines on the floor.  I know because I did it.  I learned quickly.

Here is what the floor looked like when we started the sanding.

After a few passes.  This will give you an idea of what it looks like.

A few more...

In the above picture you can tell that the middle is the most past area, followed by the bottom.  Then, the top is where we haven't passed at all.

After a few HUNDRED is what it looks like.

We only worked on it about 4 hours today since we had church this morning.  But, this is what the room looked like when we stopped tonight.

The sander is due back in the morning by 8am.  We were really discouraged when we stopped today.  We have been second guessing ourselves wondering if we are doing the right thing.  2 people that stopped by told us that we should just carpet over it.  I just feel bad carpeting over almost 100-year-old oak hardwood floors.  After writing this post though and reminding myself of where we started I feel a bit better.  I also looked online at the prices for flooring for a 14x15 foot room and it would be $900 (installed) for carpet and $1,000 for oak hardwood (installing ourselves).  After seeing the prices I feel a lot better too since we have only put out less than $100 so far.  We will need to do it at least one more weekend and then buy the polyurethane, but it will still only be about $300 for hardwood floors, plus the experience of having done it ourselves and the special-ness of having original flooring.

To give you an idea of how I feel after 2 days of scraping, sanding, vacuuming, sweeping and throwing the cats out of the room over and over again....I'm ready to go back to my day job tomorrow.  It requires no manual work whatsoever.  My back, arms, wrists don't ache from working at a computer all day.  I can sit in my PJ's until noon if I want to and just use my fingers to type.  I can't wait to sit on my bum and work at my laptop tomorrow.  :o)

Thursday, April 07, 2011

A Walk in the Country

I was talking to my dad on the phone the other day and he asked me what everything looked like right now.  The trees, flowers, river, etc.  You see, he is up in the freezing cold north and there is hardly any hint of Spring yet.  So, I've decided to put this post together for him so he can see how much everything has changed since he was here last.

Everyday Kevan and I try to take a walk to the bridge down the road (not to be confused with the bridge on our property).  We have not yet measured how far it is to get to the river from here, but I'm guessing it is a 1/2 mile or so.  We start out from our driveway and this is what we see.


As we walk down the road we always run into this doggie.  He does not like us passing his house.  He is so funny because he will not bark until we have reached his "parents" yard.  Then, he will bark until we pass.  EVERY time.  We have tried making friends, but he won't have it.  Also, there is no fence so he could approach us, but he doesn't.


While we walk down our road we see many trees and flowers.  I am not an expert on plants (as my mother-in-law knows well) so I cannot tell you the names.  But, I love to look at them! Here are a few pretty yellow flowers...


Purple flowers...


Flowering tree..


White flowering bush...




We have to walk up this hill on the way to the bridge.


As we get closer to the bridge we pass this beautiful old farmhouse.  We met the woman that lives here the other day.  She was a schoolteacher her whole life and the original farmhouse is from the late 1800's.  They have added on to it several times.  The main house (in the picture) is over 100 years old.  I love passing this house on the way to the bridge. 


This little guinea lives there too.  Isn't she cute?


Now, we've rounded the corner and are finally at the bridge.  Only one car can go over the bridge at a time.


When standing on the bridge here is a view to the left.


Here is the view to the right. You can see the neighbor's cows in the background.


I took a picture of some moss growing on the bridge. I thought this was a pretty cute picture.


As we walk every once in a while we will see a corn cob on the ground. This is from the farmer that lives down the road. Hopefully, one day during harvest time I will get a few pictures of him carrying his corn away. The little hopper trailers look like mining trailers. It is cute.


Lastly, just so you don't think everything is beautiful and romantic in the country. Here is a picture of something that we saw on our walk tonight. Something, I don't care to see again.  WORMS....lots of WORMS!  They may be caterpillars...but they sure look like worms to me!


If anyone knows the names of any of the flowers, trees or bushes I pictured above let me know.

Love you dad.  I can't wait to see you here again soon!

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Hungry Hungry Cows!

Kevan and I drove over to his dad's farm tonight to check on the cows.  When we first drove up I noticed this big lump of black up on a hill near a cow.  I figured it must be a new calf.


While Kevan was putting air in the gator's tires I went through the gate and walked up to the hill to see if it was a new baby calf.  I was scared that it was dead.  It wasn't moving at all.  The mother was getting upset with me and I was a little scared of her so I decided to walk back and get into the gator to drive up there.  They recognize the gator since Kevan's dad drives it around the farm.


As we got closer I was convinced it was dead.  It still wasn't moving at all. 


Then, I noticed it blink. I was so happy.  The mama cow was not happy with us.  You can see here that she is screaming at us.


The mom started to nudge the baby and it finally stood up and walked away with her.


Then, it was time to feed the cows.  Kevan got on the tractor and drove over to the row of hay. 

He stuck the hay spike into one of the rolls of hay.  (That is a neighbor in the picture.  He came over to help us.)

Then, Kevan picked it up and drove it out into the pasture.

Then left it in the pasture for them.  They acted like they had never eaten.  They were HUNGRY!

There was little dog following us around the whole time.  I've never met this dog before so I'm guessing it was a neighbor's dog.  By the time we finished another neighbor's dog also came to say hello.  That is what happens when you are in the country.


Before we left we drove around the whole farm to check the fences.  We had really bad storms last night and wanted to check to make sure nothing fell onto the fence.  Here is a picture of the view from one of the hills we drove over.  That is the barn on the other side of the farm, where we fed the cows. The place where we took the picture is where we hope our next house is built someday.  So, that will be our view every morning.


The only bad part of this whole thing was the amount of manure that was splattered onto me from the wheels of the gator.  Oh, farm life!  Time to wash my clothes....

I'll leave you with the new baby picture...her eyelashes are so pretty.


Monday, April 04, 2011

Our Bridge on Mountain Creek

One of the things Kevan and I love to do is walk (or take the 4-wheeler) down to our bridge.  Yup, our property in Tennessee has a bridge.  A big cement bridge.  It seems that there used to be a road (many many years ago) that went through our current property.  Our neighbors have heard that the reason it stopped being used was because our pond developed over the road and was no longer accessible and the road was moved.  So, I guess I'm thankful for our pond too.  Otherwise there would be a big road going through our property. 

We have seen turtles, fish, frogs, otters and we've even seen evidence of beavers down at the creek.  Below is a picture of the bridge.  The neigbors own the property on the other side of the bridge and as you can see they have allowed everything to grow up to the bridge.  Our neighbor said that the bridge hasn't been used by traffic in over 60 years.

Here is a picture of Mountain Creek from August of last year.

Sunday we drove down to the creek to just sit, relax and listen.  We were told there are pretty big trout and bass in the creek, but we have only seen a few little fish here and there.

Anyway, each time we visit, the amount of debris that is up against the bridge becomes larger and larger.  Each time it rains garbage, trees, pvc pipes, etc is pushed down the creek and it becomes stuck at our bridge.  It is really sad.  Here is a picture from August of the debris.

Here is a picture from December, right after a heavy rain.

Lastly, here is a picture from this past weekend.  As you can see, it is getting worse and worse.  At some point we would like to start cleaning up some of the debris, but it is going to be a HUGE job and a dangerous job. 

Another view...

The clog is starting to cause erosion around the bridge.  So, if the debris isn't cleared out we may not have a way to the bridge soon.

Here is a video that will give you a better idea of how bad it is.  You can see the debris as well as the erosion in the video.

I guess we will try to conquer this once we finish the master bedroom, paint the barn, fix the leaks in the on a farm seems to have never ending chores....I might be missing Florida...just a little.