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Heck, I live 10 miles outside of a town and my electricity goes out all the time. Sometimes its 4 hours, sometimes 45 minutes, many times more.   Last ice-storm we had, it was out for 5 days.  So you don't have to live in "paradise" to lose power. :D  Thing is it doesn't bother me all that much......................except with no electricity, we have no water pump.  No well water, no flushy-de-toilets !  That's no fun.

Edited by Chris Christenberry
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I just came back from a week at our property in New Mexico. Our lot is 5.15 acres of forest at 7300 feet of elevation. Douglas fir, Oak, Juniper, Ponderosa pine, and red Cedar. It is 8 miles off the p

It's been a while since I posted an update. There has been a lot of back and forth with the power coop, but we finally got the power pulled into the lot and a pedestal set. With water and power on sit

Just got back from a few days there. The foudations were installed last week and Liz & I had to run out and waterproof the stemwalls before the backfilling. There will be a 1472 SF log home s

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Couple of 5 gal buckets with lids, add a splash of bleach and you'll have water for the toilet.  Not counting the hot water heater, I store both drinking and general use water, enough for at least a few days.  If it's longer then that, the heater is 34 gallons.  Plus most of the time, bad weather means the creek is flowing and that's my primary toilet water source.

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I can run the well pump off of my construction site generator if I need to. Heck, I can probably run the whole house off of that generator!

5 hours ago, Chris Christenberry said:

except with no electricity, we have no water pump.  No well water, no flushy-de-toilets !  That's no fun.

That's why I designed the well system the way I did.

 

5 hours ago, Gerald Boggs said:

Couple of 5 gal buckets with lids, add a splash of bleach and you'll have water for the toilet.  Not counting the hot water heater, I store both drinking and general use water, enough for at least a few days. 

Always a good idea to have a backup plan. Like I said, it's a lifestyle choice that doesn't appeal to most folks.

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  • 1 month later...

Just got back from a few days of tree thinning for the power lines and finishing up the well house. (except the stairs)

Finished 1.jpg

 

The redwood deck is intended for firewood storage, but Liz seems to think it would make a better Yoga platform.

Seems 6'x12' works for her.

 

Finished 2.jpg

 

Speaking of Liz, here she is using her newest favorite tool., the battery powered pole chainsaw.

She cleared a lot of dead branches off the trees and helped cut the path for the power lines.

 

Liz 1.jpg

 

Liz 2.jpg

 

Edited by Joshua States
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I swear that retirement is more work than when you 'worked' for a living! I am constantly clearing, mowing or building on our spread near Austin. My wife asked me the other day, "When will I just stop for a while and enjoy it?" I told her that while I may be bitching about the next thing I have to do, that is my joy. As long as I am healthy and staying active, we are both more blessed than most. She just smiled. 

20160416_184318(0).jpg

NO you jokers, my wife ain't no horse. 

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Your place is beautiful! Nice trees and I'll bet a lot cooler in the summertime. I'm in Arizona right now and it's crazy hot. I won't even walk out to the forge or the wood shop for the next couple of weeks. Does it snow there? Please post some snow pics if you got them, I need to feel cooler, if only in my mind.

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@Ken Woodward Where in AZ are you? I'm in New River.

You want snow pics? Sure I have snow pics!

These are a couple a friend of mine sent Dec 2018.

 

Snow 2 V2.jpg

 

Snow 1 V2.jpg

 

This is one of my trail cam pics, on my lot, right in front of where the shop will be. The date is wrong. It's last winter.

 

Elk 2 V2.jpg

 

 

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Yeah. It would have been perfect. When the time comes, I have 5 acres to build a blind on, set a tree stand, plant an apple tree......

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I just got back from a few days on "The Ranch". I was supposed to be in Madison WI for a bi-annual reunion, but the plague nixed that idea. We left the camper-trailer out there last time. When I opened up the battery compartment to install the battery, This is what I found.

 

Bird nest.jpg

 

No eggs, so it went away. Liz stuck it in a small pine close by. I figure it was abandoned.

 

We don't have many juniper trees, but this one is a good size and the berries are plentiful this year.

Juniper (1).jpg

 

Juniper (2).jpg

The turkeys were all around us at nightfall and early morning. Here's a hen that was strolling by the lot next door.

 

Hen Turkey.jpg

 

We spotted this 5x5 buck by the side of the road .

 

5X5 Buck.jpg

 

 

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Just spent a few days out there again. Needed to meet the grading guy, a masonry/foundation guy, and clear some more land area up. Saturday night a flock of hen turkeys came in to roost in the trees.

Group shot 1.jpg

They came right in to about 10 yards of where we sat.

Group shot 2.jpg

 

I also took a cell phone video of a few of them taking off and roosting. (works fastest with GOOGLE as the browser)

 

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1LczeW3mxlDh7VrNx9dVGFEHBmnnydnvC/view?usp=sharing

 

Edited by Joshua States
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  • 3 months later...

Looks amazing.

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Hopefully, we will put the foundation in this spring and stand the structures up to dry-in this summer/fall.

We got the electric onsite last fall. With water and power, we can get going.

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So I suppose a long-house is out of the question? How do you feel about a Skyrim house?


54A68DFA-5121-4393-B84F-8D838A752805.jpeg
 

6AF23312-A58F-4BCA-94CF-919D4D798A61.jpeg

 

Edited by Charles dP
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@Joshua States, I can’t comment on the weather where you are relocating but made a trip to Scottsdale little over a year ago, (sort of on business), and loved the weather (June). Also got to see the Grand Canyon (stayed in Williams one night) and what a difference in temperature! Took in Sedona as well like all touristy goobers. Saw all of the wildlife you got to see as wells did also enjoyed amount of crafted work of all sorts. 

Temperature wise, I could seriously settle in Arizona. I’d like to plan another visit in a year I hope. 

Gary LT

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5 hours ago, Charles dP said:

So I suppose a long-house is out of the question? How do you feel about a Skyrim house?

Nothing was out of the question, it's just that after 26 years together, I have learned that almost nothing happens without approval from the "corporate office".....:D

 

We bought this property back in 2007 or 2008 and the plan for it has gone through many permutations. Once corporate decided it would be a good idea to build a retirement dwelling, the question arose of how to actually build it. Now, I spent a lot of time in the home-building biz, and am a journeyman level craftsman in multiple trades. There is almost nothing about the American home building experience that I do not know how to do. That being said, I am not a young man anymore and my mind can easily make a promise that my body cannot keep. Even building that little well house was a rude awakening.

Then comes the problem of finding skilled contractors, and ones who you can trust, in a state where you have almost no business connections, who are willing and able to work in such a remote location. We decided to go with a kit home sort of arrangement. There are different levels of this, and we were not looking for something turnkey. We wanted to buy the shell and finish it out ourselves. (Liz is very handy with tools) We were looking at a post & beam company out of Oregon Called DC Structures. Beautiful products, great reputation, and exactly the aesthetic we wanted. Unfortunately, shipping from Oregon to New Mexico added about $20,000 US to the price tag.

 

I work in the building code enforcement industry for the local municipal government. I am very well versed in modern building advancements as well as old world designs. Eventually, we decided on a milled log home. This is a log home where all the logs are milled to a uniform shape and size, with tongue and groove connections along the top and bottom edges. The result is all the insulating benefits of an 8" diameter log with none of the difficulties sealing the joints between them. The company we are contracted with is Satterwhite Log Homes for the shell kit. We have to find someone to assemble it, and there are travelling crews from Texas that work with this company.

 

I took one of their standard plans shortened the length from 50 feet to 46 feet, and modified the interior slightly. Then I eliminated the fireplace and put a wood stove in another location, stripped the side porches off, and eliminated the front porch gable. The shop building is one of their standard detached garage designs. Picture a 24 ft square log cabin with a single open space. The mill where the kit is made is about 300 miles from our building lot. That saved us about $18,0000 in shipping costs over the Post & Beam company. 

 

I felt badly about dumping DC Structures after the sales guy spent so much time answering questions and working through options and design elements with me, but I ended up referring them to a friend of mine who lives in Oregon. He is going to use them for his build. So it all worked out.

 

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5 hours ago, Gary LT said:

I could seriously settle in Arizona. I’d like to plan another visit

Let me know if you head out, and maybe we can get together for lunch or dinner.

I first visited AZ in 1987 with a buddy of mine (the one who now lives in Oregon) when he relocated from the east coast to the Pacific Northwest. Liz and I moved here in 1995. It's been a great run and we wouldn't change the last 25 years. It was great when we first moved out here. We loved the climate. We could go up to Flagstaff and go skiing or snowshoeing in the winter for a day trip, come home afterwards, grill dinner and eat it on the back patio. What's not to love about that?

 

We have lived in or around large urban centers our whole lives, always going out to the wilds and wilderness to get away from it. We moved away from the crowds and cramped houses in 2002, but still found ourselves commuting into it for work. Then the development started to move out from the City into our backyard. The stars at night are disappearing, there are 2 Walmart stores, 2 Home Depots, 1 Lowes, and an outlet mall all within a 15-20 minute drive. People move out of the city into the desert where we are and what do they do? They put in a swimming pool and area lighting. It makes me shake my head and wonder.

 

The area we are moving to is more like Flagstaff or Prescott in terms of climate. It's full 4-season living. We will have to readjust. Luckily, we still have all of our winter gear from when we used to live and recreate in the snow. Still use it from time to time when we go up north in the winter. Liz was looking at all my Ice Climbing gear the other week and asked me what I planned to do with it when we move........I'll have to think about that.

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It's been a while since I posted an update. There has been a lot of back and forth with the power coop, but we finally got the power pulled into the lot and a pedestal set. With water and power on site, it was time to start building. So I got the plans draw and engineer sealed copies to the permit office.  Then there was getting a phone on site..........hoo boy. It was early June when I started trying to get Century link to install a land line to the lot. They finally got the cable sticking out of the ground, but still haven't connected it to anything resembling a phone jack that I can actually connect a phone to.

 

Anyway, I got the excavator, mason, and electrician lined up to do the foundation work. I just spent a few days out there getting everyone lined out on where the house and shop go, what the schedule is, and what the plans require. 

 

I collected some trailcam pics. I forgot to set the date on one of the cams. Not a lot of wildlife visited the area since I set the cams up in June. 

Here is a small group of mule deer sitting on the house pad.

 

Deer on House pad.jpg

 

A solitary visitor checking out our camper.

 

Deer at trailer.jpg

 

And just this morning, the backhoe starting the real deal on the house foundation.

 

Backhoe Starting.jpg

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That's great, Josh.  I envy you your spot in "heaven".  Beautiful out there and there's nothing like being out in the boonies.  I know you are excited to finally see things happening.

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