Tag Archives: homestead

Taking down Christmas, maintenance on Paula’s truck, and making dog beds

Hi Everyone,

Well, it was that time again this weekend to put away all the Christmas decorations. Paula does the inside and I get to freeze outside putting the lights away (I don’t mind at all…Paula has an affinity for Santa dolls she’s collected for years and I like to avoid messing with those as I’m told “Your not putting that away right!”).

One thing we do every year is get a live Christmas tree. Some say that isn’t environmentally sustainable, but I say BS to that. I’m taking a tree that has sucked 7-8 years worth of carbon out of the air then when the holiday is done that tree gets put into our homestead. What I do to make best use of our used tree is to cut off the tree limbs/boughs and place them on top of the fall tree leaves we use as mulch around our blueberries. This has two benefits: one is that the boughs keep the leaves from blowing around, the second benefit is that all the needles and limbs around the blueberries increase the acidity of the surrounding soil adding nutritional benefit. Whether you like the idea of live trees or not we make sure that we return as much as we can back to the improvement of our urban homesteads soil. πŸ™‚

After the decorations were put away it was time for the annual oil change on Paula’s SUV/truck. That usually takes half-an-hour so nothing really else to note here other than I’ve always taken vehicle maintenance very seriously being a former automotive mechanic. Treat your cars well and you’ll be less likely to get stranded on the side of the road.

Last project for the weekend was making dog beds. You might be thinking what the heck is he talking about? Well, we bought a new king size bed for Paula and I over the Christmas vacation so we needed to figure out what to do with our old one. Using my hillbilly ingenuity I like to reused as much of a product before I send the remnants off to the dump.
(Side Note: I consider my self a proud hillbilly and not an urban-redneck. A true hillbilly is innovative and uses the resources provided to make the best of their situation to the best possible outcome weather it comes to fixing their homes, tools, vehicle repair, providing or growing food, and most important providing for their family without the desire of government interference or welfare. To my mind an urban-redneck is self-centered only thinking of what’s best for them alone and that their deserving of a free handout with little effort put forth to earn it. The attitude of “I want what I wants now…” is their mantra much like the social justice warriors which both groups believe it’s their right to get what they want no matter what anyone else has to say and YOU should have to pay for it! Otherwise we’ll use the force of government to take it from you!).Β 
With that rant off my chest, what I did was take our king size tempurpedic mattress and cut it down into a queen size mattress using one of Paula’s old 12″ kitchen knives. This foam cuts like butter so it was a fairly quick task. All that is needed after that is a new matress queen size cover (or just reusing the oversized one and tucking it over into the edge of the bed). Our son was more than happy with the result as it saved him having to buy a larger bed for himself and he can put it right on the floor of his room (he doesn’t like box springs and bed frames…ah being mid-20’s must be nice…Paula said that wouldn’t be an option for us…I was sad πŸ˜› ). With that accomplished I then took our sons old fullsize/double bed mattress and cut it down into two 40×35 dog beds. Paula’s going to order two new covers from Amazon and we can use these for our living room and the laundry room (not having to pull that bed out for use during the day now will be a big plus). Next was what to do with the old box spring…take it to the dump! Heck no! That’s not using hillbilly logic…we’re going to strip off all the fabric and break that bed down. Its all natural pine so I pulled off the covering and broke all that wood down to be burned in our outdoor firepit. The wood isn’t treated with anything so it’s a fine burning wood. So this entire operation means we’ve reduced our load on the environment with secondary reuse. Years down the road these items will eventually be sent to the dump, but….what if they find a way to recycle this foam in that time? I’ve kept a kingsize matress along with a fullsize boxspring out of our landfills; I’m proud to be a hillbilly!

Just a quick update, checkout the Youtube videos to see how the new indoor large grow tent kale is doing and all the other indoor growing projects are progressing. Paula and I have been eating off these greens with every meal now and they are putting a real dent in our weekly food bill.

Well that raps up another week here on our little urban homestead, I hope you all have a great week. πŸ™‚

Indoor harvest and seeding, raking leaves and wandering around the roof

Hey everyone, I’m late again in getting my weekend post up. Paula is heading to California for her brothers wedding and I’m staying home to be “the dog whisperer”, so it’s been busy here on the urban homestead. πŸ™‚

So…let’s get to what was done this weekend. First was harvesting the lettuce trays in our indoor grow tents. With this came the need for seeding 7 new trays of microgreens/lettuce. If you’ve been following along on our Youtube channel we were on our 2nd cut for many of these trays and they needed to head for the compost bin (aka our garden boxes). I’ve been taking these trays out and pulling out the contents and laying them on top of the garden boxes to see if I can still get some harvest out of them before the frosts drop them to the ground.

With the new trays seeded and ready to go in the grow tents it was time to finish raking the leaves around the yard (the rest of these came down while Paula and I were in Hawaii). So, with the garden boxes chopped-n-dropped it was time to bury them with a nice layer of leaves to keep the worms a little warmer and get the decomposition moving (albeit won’t be much until we start getting the warmth of spring, but what the heck why not get an early start).

The last outdoor project was getting up on the roof to do our last fall cleaning of the gutters as well as putting down a nice sprinkling of baking soda to kill off the worst friend a home owner can have in the Pacific NW….roof moss. Moss might be great on the forest floor, but letting it reside on our roofs is something you better take care of on a regular basis. Otherwise you’ll loose years of life and have to spend thousands on roof replacement. Wanting to use the least caustic method of killing the moss I’ve found that using baking soda changes the alkalinity where moss can’t survive. Our 90 year old neighbor uses Tide laundry detergent, but the thought of all that soapy residue hitting our water ways makes me a little uneasy so using something like baking soda (which isΒ soda ash or sodium carbonate) makes me feel better. πŸ™‚

Well this was a quick update for the weekend work, next weekend will be tackling the down stairs bathroom demo…so more Youtube video and pictures should be up for your enjoyment.

Have a great week and upcoming weekend everyone! πŸ™‚

70’s bathroom teardown, harvesting more fall berries and tomatoes, and putting Sasquatch on Youtube

Hi Everyone! Another weekends coming to an end, so we’re wrapping up the homestead tasks. Paula and I took a break on Saturday to relax and sit indoors and snuggle on the couch watching some Netflix movies…we needed a break from canning and dehydrating so the rainy wet weather was very conducive to just being slugs for a day. πŸ™‚

Sunday it was back to harvesting, more bathroom demo/cleanout, and filming some videos for the Youtube channel. Here’s a breakdown of the one-day working weekend:

  • Bathroom tile tearout
  • Harvesting Goji berries, tomatoes, and apples
  • Feeding the compost worms
  • Youtube channel videos

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Planting fall bulbs and bathroom shower stall demolition

Hey everyone, it was another busy weekend here getting into the fall season. This will be just a quick update since we’re heading into the next weekend already (post is going up Friday). πŸ™‚

Saturday:
Paula and I went out to the local garden center to pickup some more bulbs for the backyard hillside and organic bonemeal for the indoor veggie grow tents. With plenty of time left in the day Paula spent the afternoon outside harvesting some of the late ripening tomatoes while I went around planting clusters of bulbs. This round of planting included 140 yellow & 40 white (with pink center) Daffodil Narcissus as well as 8 specialty variants with all pink pedals.

These new additions, plus the hundreds more we’ll be planting this fall in the front and backyard will really complete our bulb plantings from last year. The moles don’t seem to eat these (as well as deer) so at least we’re putting in bulbs now that will last until we move to our new farmstead. Over the last 3 years we were putting hundreds of tulip bulbs in only to see them never show up the following year due to mole pressure.

Sunday:
This was demo day for the old master bathroom, so far I’ve ripped out the old cabinets/counter, old nasty carpet/pad. My time this weekend was cutting up all the old cabinets to put into our over-sized trashcan as well as demo’ing the tile tub surround (including all the drywall).

Demo of the old master bathroom counter/cabinets and the shower tile surround

Demo of the old master bathroom counter/cabinets and the shower tile surround

Videos:

We’ll were ramping up for the coming weekend with more demo in the old bathroom (ripping up the pressboard flooring and hauling old tile out to the trash can). Then on Sunday Paula and I will be out planting more fall bulbs in anticipation of Spring 2018. πŸ™‚