Settling In

Clearing the area to build
My son watching from a high vantage point

Sleeping in the tent turned out to be a lot of fun. I had my cot with my cushion on top which helped me get great sleep. I was able to fall asleep with the sound of an owl hooting. He wasn’t there every night but it was great falling asleep to when he was.

One of my favorite things that I hadn’t expected was the conversations with our children as we were laying in our cots. We had some great discussions and laughs. It was priceless family time. No distractions, from TV, etc.

Getting cleaned up before bed was a bit special. We bought a Costco box of wipes. Because it was summer everything was dusty. Every step would send up a plume of dust, so when we went to clean ourselves up at night we ended up with a lot of black wipes.

Taking showers was quite the process as well. We would heat some water on our propane stove and pour it into a large bucket. When the temperature was right than we would use a bowl and pour the warm water over our heads and shower that way. Much more time consuming and labor intensive than turning a knob. As a result we found ourselves stopping by my parents house whenever we were in town and taking showers there.

Laundry was never my favorite chore but having to load six peoples laundry into the car, head to my moms and spend all day getting it done easily turned it into my most dreaded task. After doing laundry at my moms a few times I found a laundry mat and would do it there. That way I was finished after only a couple of hours. But it was still a hassle to transport and expensive.

Building started! Well it wasn’t really building, it was getting the ground ready for building, but it was still exciting. We spent hours watching the process. It was so intriguing to watch the men use their excavating machines with exactness. It was like an extension to their own hands.

The First Week

If you are asking yourself why I didn’t blog about this adventure while it was happening, I’ll explain. We had no electricity except our generator which we used to power the pump to our well. It could have charged my laptop and other technical toys but was rather inconvenient. We moved in July but didn’t officially have electricity until December 26th. My plan had been to keep up with my blogging and writing during this whole adventure but found it to be much more difficult than I had previously anticipated.

It was really exciting to finally move to our property that we had been working on for months. Our first day in the tent was July 6th. We also picked up our new puppy, Gypsy, that day as well.

Each person had their own hammock, so we spent time picking the perfect spot to hang them and enjoyed the summer days laying in them and looking up at the trees. However by the second day it was obvious my kids were suffering from slight withdrawals of our technological world. The four youngest ages are; 17, 15, 12, 8. They were all bored out of their minds. We had no TV, no internet, no gaming devices and lousy cell coverage. All things that my kids had grown up depending on. As a good parent I had limited their use of these items over the years but the sudden complete lack of them was a bit of a shock.

So I headed to the book store and bought eight books. To my complete astonishment they started reading. Well not my youngest. He was reveling in the outdoors. He spent his time catching bugs and making a terrarium, playing with the dogs, and roaming the property imagining.

I spent my time trying to set up house in the woods. We called the area where we slept Tent City. We had one large tent for clothes and one for sleeping. We also had two canopies. One with all of our camp chairs and one covering two tables, our camp stove and some shelves.

Oh, I almost forgot to mention. Our builder was supposed to have an outhouse (Honey Bucket, Porta Potty, whatever you call them. They go by many names) for us by the time we moved up there. We got up there on a Friday and there was no outhouse. We called our builder and he said they only deliver on Tuesdays and Thursdays. So we had to wait until Tuesday before we had a something other than a hole in the ground. It sure made us appreciate it when it arrived.

That first week, I was very ambitious. I woke up early to take the puppy on a walk. Afterwards I came back and made blueberry, chocolate chip pancakes. There wasn’t much to clean so most of my time that first week was making sure things were organized. All and all, it was an exciting and enjoyable time.