Saturday, February 23, 2013

Chapter 81...Ducks and Ditch Lines

Off Grid...Chapter 81

Wow what a change in weather this morning, It is really cool out. Mike wants to go to a land auction this morning to see what the price is. We find out the price and decide that they are delirious. Next he takes me to the local Farmer's Market, which is very tiny but I'm thankful to have at least that, lol. Then we head to the big town to look for a patio umbrella and also some rock for our front garden. We haven't found the plants yet but we have to get some rock in the garden before we do the final coat of paint on the front of the house. The rock will keep the dirt off the house when it rains. We found bags of "egg rocks" and we buy 10 thinking that will be enough.

Once we get home. we unload the bags into the tractor bucket and bring them down to the patio.

Here is Mike unloading the bags.

We line up the bags next to the "orphan garden".

Oops- it looks like I have to move these plants again. This time I dig them up and re plant them on a hill outside our fence. They are on their own.

Back to the front garden. Now that it is empty once again, Mike and I roll out the weed cloth and put it into the garden.

Next we open all the bags and dump the rock into the garden. Here is Mike stomping down the rock to make it level.

Now we just have to find a couple of different green plants for the sides and I will change out a plant in the middle for color. Mike and I always put rock in our gardens. We like things that are maintenance free and if you go with larger rock you never have to re fill it and if any leaves drop you can use a blower to clean the gardens out. We are not fans of mulch because it looks dirty and you have to buy more every year for it to look decent but that's just us. Once the gardens get done I don't want to have to mess with them every year.

Later on Mike does some more caulking on the house.

After we go inside Mike calls Jimmy to put us on schedule for a big rock delivery for the ditches. Yuk!! The dreaded job. While he does that I go on-line and place an order for 2 awnings to place over our front doors. I also order a patio umbrella since there are none left in our local stores. This should help with the afternoon sun.

It's another nice cool day. I go up to work on my vegetable garden. Niki comes up with me every morning to pick vegetables and I think it's the highlight of her day, lol.

We have a easy piddle day. Mike and I went through some yard sale stuff. We always keep a container for things we no longer need or use. When we find these items they get cleaned, priced, and then put into the container. This way if we ever have a yard sale we are ready to go.

I worked on the story and organized some pictures while Mike did paperwork. All and all it was just a nice relaxing day.

This morning we picked up some parts so Mike could work on the motorhome. When we get to the other property we notice there is a big water/mud mess in front of our gate. This has been going on since the man across the way started grading out his property but didn't divert his water. Now when it rains the water comes across the street and settles at the edge of the road by our gate.

This is the mess.

Mike digs a temporary ditch in hopes that the water will stay off our land until we can contact the owner.

On the property the Geese are gone but here is a mama duck and her babies.

Mike worked on the motorhome and I had to run and get parts for him one time. Thankfully we are only 1 mile from town. Now that Mike put the new parts in hopefully it will run smooth. We made it home just in time for the rain. That night Mike called our neighbor about the water problem. We'll see if he fixes it.

We start working on the ditch line. Last year Jimmy dug out a ditch line for us and Mike and I only put in one load of rock and made some dams. That isn't anywhere near enough rock for the ditch. Before we can add anymore rock we have to clean out the ditch lines.

First we have to clean out the dirt that has settled and built up over the winter. We pull the larger rocks out and start hand shoveling the dirt into the tractor bucket.

Here is Mike cleaning out the ditch.

While Mike starts placing eh rocks back into the ditch I continue to shovel out more of the excess dirt.

This time we are going to clan out the ditch, pout curlex and seed on the side of the ditch, and put rock in. Hopefully the curlex will help any excess dirt from going back into the ditch. Our first section is done. Mike seeds the side with clover and then we staple the curlex on.

This is going to be a very slow job. Thankfully this part up top is the worst of it. It took us a lot of raking and shoveling and we only got about 30 feet done. Mike took out about 8 loads of dirt in the tractor bucket and brought it down to the pond wall.

Later on we went back to the other property to try and finish mowing but again it was still too wet. I did some weed eating and Mike decided to turn the motorhome around on the grass.You guessed it he got our 30,000 pound motorhome stuck in the mud. I'll be good and try not to say "I told you so", lol. Oh well just another thing to deal with. There is no way we can get it out of the mud until things dry up.

7-22 We have to continue working on the ditch line. At least if we do a little once in awhile it won't seem so bad. Yeah right, lol. Mike and I are getting too old for hard labor. This time our goal is to do another section about 40 feet long. First we have to shovel out all the extra dirt, load it into the bucket, and Mike will dump it onto the pond wall. Then we will seed the high side of the ditch side of the ditch line and then staple the curlex. Even if the seed doesn't grow because the side is almost vertical at least the curlex should hold the dirt in place.

Cleaning the ditch line by hand.

Moving down and it is looking good.

And finally we got the worst part of the ditch covered with curlex.

Now if the cows will just stay away from it we will be in good shape. Once we get farther down we can have Jimmy in to dig out the temporary dams. There is a lot of dirt caught there. Too much for Mike and I to dig out.
This is going to be an ongoing slow job.

I hope you all enjoyed our update. 



  1. You two have more energy than any 20 people I know. Kudos to you. :)

    1. LOL...sometimes I read back at the things Mike and I do and our time frame. I think we are nuts!!!