Monday, February 18, 2013

Chapter 29...Retaining Block, Water Storage Tank, And Underground Pipes

Off Grid...Chapter 29

We had a really good week. We are so close now.

Monday 9-22
We had to go over to our other property and take care of the lawns. I think we only have 1 more round until next spring.

Mike called the flooring place to see when they were coming to do the installation. They can't come until next Monday(which is now today). We'll just have to finish some of our other projects. It's not like we don't have anything else to do.

Mike finished wiring the rest of the electrical outlets in the house. Next he has to working the light switches. At least there aren't as many of those.

Mike installed our outside light.

Tuesday 9-23
We installed one more kitchen cabinet for above the refrigerator. Check it out it was only $23.00. Woo hoo!

I started bringing stuff from the motorhome down to the house. The coach is breathing a huge sigh of relief to get some of this weight off. I am so excited to play in my new big kitchen. I can't wait until it is done. Right now I am stocking the cabinets.

When we move in I can be an organizing fool. I love to organize. It's so much fun.

Mike worked on the switches while I was stocking my cabinets. This is what he did. First he pulled the wires out of the box, stripped them, and cut them down to size. Then he tied the grounds(copper) together with an extra leg that goes to the bottom of the switch. Then one black(hot) wire goes to the top of the switch and one black(hot) wire goes to the bottom of the switch.

Then he tied the two white(neutral) wires together. because those wires are not needed on a switch.

Mike finished all the outlets and switches in the house. He tested everything and they all work. He only got zapped once.

Mike also installed an outside receptacle.

Wednesday 9-24
We hooked the trailer to the jeep and headed for our propane company to pick up some of our appliances. On our way we passed Jimmy's(our grader) and we saw he picked up our concrete retaining blocks and they are sitting on his loader(all 40,000 pounds of them). That's a good sign. He should be coming this week to install them

We got to the propane company and loaded our fireplace, washer, and dryer. They didn't get my stove in yet. The woman tracked it down and it was sent to one of their other stores in Georgia. You would think that after almost a month that store would have realized they didn't order that stove. Anyway they will get my stove by next week. My refrigerator should also be in today or tomorrow.

On our way home we stopped at David's to pick up conduit pipe to put our water line and electric line inside. We want to keep the lines protected when they go underground. I finally got my apple picker. While we were there we ran into a bunch of people that we know. We even saw some people that we haven't seen since we owned the Roller Skating Rink here.

When we got home we unloaded everything into the house.
Here are the fireplace parts.

The fireplace insert.

My dryer

And a matching washer which I didn't get a picture of.

We also unpacked the bathroom vanity that we bought at Home Depot last Sunday. We were pleasantly surprised to find out it is solid wood.
This is our vanity.

We also bought the sink top but unfortunately it had some damage on the
top. So we'll have to return that "all the way to Bristol Va", yuk!

Thursday 9-25
Today turned out to be an extremely busy day. Our grader showed up with our retaining block. This is how they had to unload each block. Each block weighs 4000 pounds and each half block is 2000 pounds.

First they hook a chain to the block.

Then the block is lifted.

Then they move the block.

And they put it down close to the house. Of course the nosy bull has to check it out.

The bull has been getting into our yard the past 2 days so we have to add more wire on the fence. Here is Mr. Bull posing for me.

This is Jimmy and Mike placing the block.

One side of the house is done.

The other side is done and back filled.

Now the block is up.

We are either going to stucco or rock the front of the block and other concrete. We haven't decided yet but at least the block is in place.

Then Mike had to move the motorhome so that are trench could be dug.
This is our new campsite with grass.

This is the trench from the house to the well.

Mike and I put in 100 feet of electric wire inside ten 10ft conduit pipes and then glued the pipes together.

We also put 100 feet if water line inside another 10 pipes.

Then we put the pipes in the ditch.

While Mike and I were working with the pipes the grader was digging a hole for our water tank. Mike helped him get the water tank in the ground.

The grader covered up most of the ditch line and left the ends open because Mike still has to tie it all in to the well, well pump, and the house.

It was a very long day and we are exhausted.

Friday 9-26
We woke up this morning to rain. Thank goodness we got the block in and most of the grading done yesterday. We drove to town to check a couple of stores for furniture and we picked up my counter tile from Lowe's.
We couldn't get any more work done today because of the rain.

Saturday 9-27
Oh, it's the dreaded day. We went to Hickory NC to look for furniture. We left about 9:30am and got home at 6:30pm. Poor Niki. She hates when we are gone a long time. I was a little surprised by the gas situation in NC. We aren't having any problems in our small town in TN, maybe because the population is so low. Anyway we drove over 75 miles one way and I would say about 95% of the gas stations had no gas. It wasn't even that bad after Katrina.

Ok, back to the furniture trip. We stopped at every store along Hwy 321 and Hwy 70 in Hickory. We probably went to 20 different stores and 2 separate outlets with multiple stores in each one. It was as bad as Mike and I anticipated. The furniture today is really big and mostly ugly. It wasn't looking good for us. Mike and I had a system-he would take one side of the store and I would take the other side. We would buzz through the store and if anything looked good we would show the other. Nothing looked good. We are so screwed..

At one of the outlets we both ended up in front of the same bedroom set. I said "I like that" and Mike said "do you know why"? Uh yeah, because I think it's nice. He told me it was the exact same line of furniture that we found online in the dining room set. So we ordered the bedroom set and the dining room set. They have to check the stock on Monday(today). The saleswoman gave us 35% off the list and she came in 50% less than the place online. We also don't have sales tax when they deliver across the state line.

We kept looking for a leather set for the living room. No luck. We were so tired that we gave up looking. It's hard to make a good decision when you are "done".

We drove home and Niki was thrilled to see us. I went online to check our furniture because I got the brochure. That turned out to be mistake. Our furniture line was discontinued in August. Now I'm nervous that the furniture place won't have our pieces in stock. I'll find out today. I really hope that whole day wasn't wasted.

It's a little drizzly out today which isn't good. The flooring company is supposed to deliver and install our floor tomorrow. We need things to dry up around here.

Mike worked on some of the connections for the electric and water lines in the ditch. We also put the seal on our water tank.

Now that the trucks and track hoes are done on our front lawn we can work on it. We started raking it out which is very hard to do in the mud. Then we put seed and straw done. At least it is cleaner.

Front lawn before.

Front lawn after.

That's all for this week. More busy times ahead and another story soon. Have a great week everyone.

Lisa and Mike


  1. Michelle CrawfordMay 6, 2013 at 2:44 AM

    This was a great week! You had this huge load of retaining wall and you made no mention of most of the load being left at the bottom of the hill because the truck couldn't make it UP the hill. Your road must have vastly improved-before there were issues with just lumber and this time you had tons of concrete make it up with no comment!

    1. We are always happy when a truck makes it in. I think they made it up for a couple of different reasons. Yes the road had been improving by that time. It got packed down by numerous heavy vehicles. And maybe the driver paid more attention to what he was doing:) The truck was also heavy which can help.