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Friday, June 30, 2017

Todays Simple project!

Ha ha ... is anything simple in a vintage trailer!

I'm making progress slowly and steadily. Sometimes the availability of another persons help takes precedence and changes the plan for the job at hand. Sometimes I simply have to think about the project before I actually do anything about it. Sometimes its a little step today, check supplies on hand, think some more or darn its to hot lets take a cool shower and read a book and fall asleep!

A few days ago i peeled up the vinyl floor covering a soft spot in the sub floor. This had been underneath one of the dinette benches and under the ceiling messy spot. There had been a swamp cooler on the roof at one time. Probly too heavy for the trailer it had long since been removed. The roof had a dried up glob of silicone that didnt seal. I removed that silicone plug and cleaned and repaired the roof prior to coating. I think we are water tight again, being in my area, and needing to haul my water, I will wait for rain to test it.

Back to the floor... the day I peeled up the vinyl, I felt overwhelmed by what I found. Today I began chipping away at the old poorly done patch. Please when patching, even in tight spaces, get all the bad wood out! Actually get past the damage and take out part of the good if possible.  So I  will plug away at this over a few days, because I still have company who offered to help me with some outside stuff and I have to help with that too. So in my spare time I'm chipping away at the old patch of floor. And imagining a nice beach house kind of wood floor great for doggies and bear feet!

Love this... 

Simply, 
Lesa

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Simply another day Older!

Today I turn 59. Its my birthday.

I got text messages from my daughter and friends. Lots of Facebook messages. An ex-boyfriend called.

Yesterday a friend took a picture of me while I was at the library.

Next year I will turn 60! Oh my 60...like officially I can be called old! Well I've got a little time - a whole year before then.

Birthdays.  So I vaguely remember a backyard birthday party at our family home in Maine. I was young enough that I wasn't in school yet. When my family joined the Worldwide Church of God, birthdays were no longer celebrated. WWCG believed that we should do the things Christ did as he set an example for us of a life lived successfully as a human, with God the father's help. The bible didn't show any positive birthday celebrations nor any birthday celebrations with Jesus in attendance.  So birthdays were simply another day.

I've often picked an age or birthday as a milestone or goal setting tool. Thinking for example that I'd be happily married by 25 and have 2.5 children, a cape cod style house with picket fence, a Jeep Cherokee in the driveway,  a yellow tabby cat and a cinnamon colored chow dog all by 30 years old. By 40 Id be thin, painting and designing fashion or starting an art gallery and still happily married to the same man, going on vacations and celebrating anniversaries with our friends.   Wellll dream on. My life sure didn't go that way!

I was married by 21, had the 2 kids and 6 miscarriages. My now ex-husband, was in love with someone else, he conveniently married me  because i was in the church. We moved a lot because he didn't like to pay rent and I was a problem solver who figured out how to survive the consistent upheaval of monthly financial and housing crisis. We weren't happy, there was both physical and emotional abuse. By 32 I was divorced, depressed and homeless my second time (the first being after getting my first apartment and job and being disowned by my parents). 

By 40, I had been in another relationship, had left the church, which meant self imposing the church's excommunication from my friends and family members. This relationship was odd, I  thought that if you loved someone you gave them room and emotional space to be themselves... well that just turned into a mess of confusion, cheating and emotional abandonment. I knew that was over on my 40th birthday but we didn't split up until much later. I was so lonely. And there never was any space in our apartments for me, they were places that looked like he lived there practically alone.

By 50 I made changes. BIG changes! I had become a raw foodist (a strict raw vegan in fact). I lost 175 pounds in the 18 months before my birthday.  I moved to  Costa Rica where I lived very naturally (like plastic free, sugar free, organic, homemade everything). I cut my hair real short and got a tattoo to mark that birthday and time in my life.

I am 59! 59... I  am a landowner. I have a great doggie companion, Ozzie, who loves me and keeps me company, and gives me someone to care for. I have a pretty reliable car/suv. I have a home, a work in process now, yet a home. I feel more stable than ever. I have friends,  yup friends who check in on me, and wish me happy birthday  and want to be near me and to visit with me. I write a blog and people read it! My two children are grown and sometimes they contact me and we can even video chat.

Life is pretty amazing.

So whats up for this year and getting on to 60?  It's time for me to start dating. I would like to share the life that is coming up with someone. I think that I have a lot to share. I will be working on my trailer home. I will likely attend RTR (if there is one), at least I will travel to stay warm and visit friends this winter. I will be working on my health and weight, yup I didn't stay with a raw vegan diet and I am heavier than is good for me. I have a goal to get my outdoor kitchen area set up enough within a month so I can bake whole wheat sourdough bread and pizzas to take to the Farmer's Market. The Kombucha is already working its magic!

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

A Simple little Work Party!

I need a little help! So I first asked neighbors on a Facebook group and after getting some interest and setting a date - we're on!

  • Who - anyone who is willing to work, can get here on their own, is radically independent and contacts me through the email button on my blogs home page (unless you know me personally then you know what to do) 

  • What - I am putting up my fencing.  I will have enough rolls of slatted fence and tposts for the job. I do not have the stuff for 2 gates, which i would also like to build. Gates could possibly be built with round wood from my site I don't have that skill yet, I'd like to learn though. Other stuff could be found to do if we have more hands than necessary and if the supplies are here. Stuff like assembling my outdoor kitchen, building more shade , I'd like to build a round wood pergola, leveling or edging my patio site (I don't expect to have paver blocks this year), cleaning up my driveway of downed wood. We might even be able to paint inside the trailer or do a bit of finishing work inside as well.
            BRING: gloves, a hat, a tpost pounder to share, water, muscle! If you are staying the weekend please be self contained! I have a compost and humanure bin, burn barrel for trash, and a shower tent for privacy. I have limited water. I do not have solar. I do not have a generator. 

  • Where - Witch Well, AZ. My property. More details will be shared privately.

  • When - Friday, July 7, 2017. (If you stay the weekend be prepared to visit our new Farmer's Market on Saturday morning it is 5 miles away)

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Shade awning made Simple!

I have a vintage Nomad trailer. I live in Arizona and we need shade. Of course we are also in the midst of a heatwave right now so its even more important.

My trailer has a typical vintage awning rail, which is a channel that a side of a fabric awning which has a cord sewn into it would have been slide through.  With the typical Southwestern states winds, the potential is for the awning to get ripped off the side of the trailer causing damage to both the awning and the trailer.


In order to avoid all the damage I used a tarp made of shade cloth. Bought for $25 at Harbour Freight, mine is sold as a mesh tarp and is 8 feet x 10 feet in size.

Being frugal, I was looking for tent poles and since my friend Wolf is visiting,  I asked his advice! Omgosh why didn't I think this up on my own - wooden closet poles with a screw in the top! At a few cents a foot I bought one for close to $4 and one was free...whooo!

Now to attach to the awning rail I wanted a way to use elastic based bungee balls so the awning could stay up most of the time. The give of the bungee balls allows the awning to flap in a breeze without damage. Though over time I expect wear. How to attach bungee balls to an awning rail took some research on Pinterest! Some cleaver guy used aluminum tubing and paracord to make these loops. Well I had some copper tubing lining around and some cord that fit through it well, so I piddled one afternoon and made enough for me and Kathleen too.


For tie outs, Wolf having 20 years experience in the desert and at Burning Man, suggested I forgo tent stakes and simply use 3 foot long rebar. We pounded it in using a 3 pound sledgehammer.  Then using the last of my paracord, tied out the shade tarp and placed the poles. For safety, I picked up a 99 cent pool noodle, cut it in half with a  knife and slid it over the rebar.



Thats it! Grab a chair and a cold drink and you too can manage a heatwave!

Keep it Simple Silly!
Simply,
Lesa

Monday, June 19, 2017

Oh Simple - I think not...

Yesterday was window day. I pulled the front window out to repair a leak and reseal with new butyl tape. Easy peasy 1 or 2 hour job.... well not so much in the heat. It was around 95F yesterday. We are in the midst of a heatwave. So the removal went quickly and smoothly.



I put some shower water out to heat up and since it was hot, I piddled with inside stuff like... removing the old water tank and hot water heater.


Then...darn

About an hour away from Kathleen's bbq time. Its time to reinstall the window. A distant sound of thunder and a dark cloud added to my anxiety as I opened the butyl tape package and it was all melty and gooey.... I was up to my elbows in goo really quickly! Anyway I glopped it on and after a good 1.5 hours Wolf helped me lift the window back in place as we felt 4 or 5 rain drops.... yup I live in AZ, thats all we got today! The window back in, we pulled our late for the bbq butts together and went to have chicken at Kathleen's tiny vintage Terry trailer home. 




Simply bugged and plodding right along


The Cedar Gnats moved in a couple weeks ago.  How crazy annoying. I seem to be more affected by the bites than anyone around me.  Im glad I've had a leftover tube of prescription itch cream. At times I've been covered in sores. Now its even more difficult to watch Ozzie in his new haircut being swarmed by these biting monsters. We found some clove and peppermint spray for pets that helps some, but mostly we stay inside the screening of the trailer. Which can be boring!  These bugs arent out at nite and for about an hour in the morning when it is still cool, so I try to get outside stuff done early. I still swat and scratch and deal with them throughout the day as i come and go from inside trying to make progress on my work.

Im hoping to have the ceiling finished today - plenty of inside work with that. Then the next challenge will be the front window. It needs new butyl tape, which makes it weatherproof  and I am hoping that I can take the whole thing out so I can get the refrigerator casing out of the trailer!  We had to dismantle the refrigerator after I put my thumb through the rusted out gas burner and realized that it was toast. I kinda thought I could then crush the casing to make it fit out the door.  Nope too well made for that....so thats tomorrows project. Then I  think Kathleen is grilling chicken on Sunday.

Yesterday Phoenix left for a couple weeks in Colorado. Hes planning to return to take care of some personal business after that.  Wolf has been repairing his truck and he made me a composting bin! Yes, composting in Arizona is different because it is so dry here. But its not only possible, Wolf has had lots of experience with composting in the desert...so I'm learning all that i can.

Oh and my daughter and I, for personal and family reasons, have decided to cancel my trip to Virginia. We will use video chat for the birthing instead. How kewl is technology!

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Pay Pal link

I  havent figured out how to change my donation button yet ...so heres a beginning

paypal.me/SimplyLesa

Friday, June 9, 2017

Simply stepping right along!

Daily progress, no matter how small, can help me keep on track with my priorities and head off (well sometimes) anxiety and depression.  Yesterday was a frustrating day. It seemed everything that I touched went wrong. Spilled my coffee, cell phone battery died during a call with my credit union, old paid off credit cards took money from my account - darn...  so I gave up and went to the library. The car rides very different with new shocks,  yeah! I delivered Kathleen's grill to her and she rode in  with me, that was nice and making the delivery took something off the to do list as well as giving me a success for the day!

This morning, fully charged batteries thanks to the library, I tackled my new to me entry steps. So a friend from town brought up a set of what they thought were trashed travel trailer wooden steps. When they took them off the tow trailer, they smashed and the friend was upset. I  messed with them and made them functional. I have been using them nearly two months. I wanted to give them some color to  freshen them up. So a little screw tightening and sanding and a bit of stain - whaala!


But oops I  forgot that I live in Arizona, duh. Dark colos get HOT! (Grin)... so I  added the rug to protect Ozzie's little paws!



Shocked Simply


Simple and Easy are two very different ideas...think about it!

My Honda was bottoming out on Route 191 between Witch Well and  St Johns. Sure that road is bad, there are signs that say Rough Road! Many vehicles bottom out....but truly my shocks were pretty bad. So my buddy Phoenix is visiting and said let's change your shocks, if you can swing it financially.  So we set about shopping and I got a good price on some Monroe OESpectrums, and off we went....



Well, not so fast, because a bolt sheared off and we were kinda stuck with a welded kinda strangely and fused together mess. Trusty phone in hand and a quick text message to 3 welder/mechanic kinda buddies. My neighbor John got back to me right away saying he probly had a way to help. After a quick call, we arranged to get parts and then this morning we drove really slowly to visit....



Whoohoo I think this will be an improvement.



THANKS GUYS!

Monday, June 5, 2017

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Simply a new Farmer's Market & Swap Meet

Thanks to Jim McDowell for this article and pictures that he posted on Facebook. Our community at Witch Well AZ is growing and developing. Here's what Jim wrote about the first Farmers market and swap meet  (east coasters thats a flea market, grin) YUP I was there too!

The first of our Witch Well Farmer's Market days was pretty successful.  More swap meet than consumables this first time, (3 people with eggs, one person offering coffee and cold soft drinks and one with packaged MREs), but as we get deeper into the growing season, several people I've spoken to intend to sell harvested vegetables, fruits and maybe even some baked goods.  I believe the plan is to go every Saturday morning 8-11 to establish a regular, dependable presence, then see how it goes by the end of the season.  We're in the parking lot about a hundred yards back from 191 right on 7230 (Apache Blvd).  Thanks to Doug Ball for the use of the space.  Congrats to all who came out, buyers AND sellers.  See you there again...!

     





Friday, June 2, 2017

Simply what a Wolf at my door!?

Someone said that there is "no rest for the weary"! Well I am not weary and I actually got some rest and went to my weekly group therapy meeting then took groceries to a sick friend and put in about 4 hours volunteering at the local thrift store.  AND this showed up!

Of course my friend Wolf had contacted me about visiting during June. He had mentioned possibly helping me with my trailer repairs while here. Well he had a little tire problem on the way.... yikes chained up axels and stuff... and BIG boy tires!

He had just been at an Overland Expo and brought newbie nomad Phoenix, who by the way just quit his job! What a great rig he's got.


Well, Phoenix and Ozzie have become best buddies. Its cute to watch them run and play together. Wolf has been pretty occupied off loading his camp and seeing to the damage on the truck. He needs a new bottle jack, and tires of course  and now he's wondering if he can find some local work to make money to cover this unplanned expense!  Phoenix has proved to be extremely helpful already by tinkering with and fixing my Honda's rear door which was stuck! Now I can change the blinker light bulb, Yeah!

We are planning to be at the NEW Witch Wells AZ Farmers Market & Swap Meet tomorrow! (Thats 8-11am on CR7230 1/8th mile North of the Witch Well Tavern). We are planning to help each other as we can...we intend to get my trailer leveled better and repair the roof asap. Then I  have a trip to Springerville planned because the Oz-man needs his summer haircut!

We are off and running on a new adventure!

Simply moving day for Kathleen!

Towing can be anxiety inducing!  I had gotten stuck in the sand twice recently. I was very concerned about Tuesday's project of towing the 1960 Terry travel trailer that Kathleen bought as a new home. The trailer has a very short tongue and was loaded with living. It was within the tow rating for my Honda Passport.

I'm happy to report that we made it fine, just exhausted from the stress.

She's basically all set up with a basic home. I was happy to help as well as being glad that she is capable of taking over her own responsibility now that she has a good beginning.  I've been over to visit, of course, I was greeted with big smiles and excited stories about how much she loves to have a home and property and the fenced-in area to keep the free range cattle outside . We continue to talk, text and visit helping each other...

Mission accomplished!