Posts Tagged With: Handyman

Lists

So back in December, I was doing some thinking. I wanted to slightly change the direction of where and what I wanted this blog to be. No huge changes, just some tweaking. My Handy Man will tell you that this girl is not a fan of change. Whenever anything around our home is going to change, at first I am pretty (okay VERY) resistant to any alteration to what I perceive to be the norm in our lives. Thank God that He gave me a man that embraces change and is more than happy to drag me along until I get used to said change!

The kicker is that I am an ICU nurse and things are always changing at work. At the hospital, I can and will take any change that is thrown my way in stride. Funny, one would think that tendency would bleed over into my home life. Not so. As a matter of fact, the ability to handle the unexpected does not last as far as the nurse’s station. When I come back to whatever computer I have decided was mine, which is the same one I use any time I am working, all of my duties are there lined out in a list.

 

Yes, I make a list of all the things that I need to accomplish for my patients in the current shift. If, and that is a monumentally giant IF, I have time for anything else during my shift, I also have another running list of things I need to accomplish at work, such as continuing education or whatever else needs to be done. I cannot tell you the satisfaction that I feel every time I get to cross something off my lists. And trust me, I have one for anything that I have to do. I keep a standard running list of groceries needed, bills to be paid, and cleaning chores. Every fall, I have a renewable list of things that I will pack for deer camp.

My Handy Man does not do lists. He thinks I am completely crazy to write and rewrite the same things that I do all the time. I try to describe to him the feeling of peace that lists bring me. However, he does not get it and I cannot….. Or will not??….. No definitely CANNOT change it. I think I was making lists way back in kindergarten and maybe sooner than that. I do not exactly recall when I became a list maker extraordinaire. I will have to check with my mom on that.

 

But anyway, back to the point of My Handy Man’s contention with my incessant need for a list. I assert that everyone has the need to make lists. My Handy Man makes lists and keeps them inside his very nice looking head, along with a compass that I apparently do not posses. I know that I am not the only one with this obsession. However, My Handy Man says that I make lists to make a list. Which is totally blown out of proportion. I only put the phrase “make a list” on one or maybe two lists, max!

 

Lists are my security blanket. They are for the most part the only way I get things done. Once the final task is crossed off, I can go home from work and sleep in peace or know that the revolving list of bills have been paid or that I brought everything that I meant to take to deer camp or on vacation or that I have bought everything I needed to when I went to the store. If everything is on the list, then I have assurance that everything is under control. Maybe it is a false assurance or maybe it makes me a bit of a control freak. Hey, it is what it is.

Our Soldier sleeping in peace.

Over the last couple of years, My Handy Man and I have not had too many constants in our lives. Our world has been rocked to and fro. Nevertheless, we maintain and will continue to hold onto the ability to find silver-linings and can count many blessings that have come about, too. The past nine months have been particularly painful, but I think we may have reached some sort of a turning point. For the first time in a while, we finally have some bright spots to look forward to. However, I cannot go into that tonight. I will write about it tomorrow. It is on the list!

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Categories: Hunting | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Changes

Life gets in the way sometimes. Or rather, we let life get in the way. It seems as if one second we were in the week before Easter. Now I find myself in the midst of rifle season, the weekend after Thanksgiving!

What happened? Where did the time go? How has so much time passed?

I know, but then I do not know. It feels as if I have lost time, but then I know that I have not. For I can remember every excruciating, happy, sad, painful, joyous, sorrow-filled moment in the half year that has gone by. Times of deep anguish, times of pleasure, times of bitter disappointment, and times of wondrous pride have swept us to and fro this last six months. Neither My Handy Man nor myself has quite grasped everything we have been through. All we know is we went through it together and came out on the other side still holding onto one another. That is saying something. One day I will talk about all that has gone on, every single thing, but that day is not today. For now, all I will say is this, as with everything in life, expect some changes for Lone Star Harvester. The basic principles that I envisioned for this blog will remain, but we will be shaking things up. As we have been shaken up, so shall this blog, and hopefully it will come out stronger for it. Just like My Handy Man and I have.  Until next time……

Categories: Hunting | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Preparations

My Handy Man and I were discussing the upcoming deer season. Neither one of us can contain our excitement over the prospect of what may happen next Fall. We are basically two grown children waiting with unabashed glee at the coming of Christmas day. Only, our Christmas starts the last weekend of September which ushers in Fall bow season in Texas. We cannot wait and I can tell you that there are exactly 176 days until bow season is upon us!

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With all the dreams of the upcoming season, there comes the practicality of good planning.  What would we like to accomplish before opening day? How do we plan to accomplish these goals? Where would we like our Deer Management Program to take us? Yes, I capitalized it. It needed an “official name”. It is imperative that it is capitalized.

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The hallmark of any good management program has to be adequate food and water sources. We have 2300 acres of hunting land in South Texas. On that land, we have 9 ponds and multiple stock tanks. The tanks are filled with well water. So drought withstanding, we tend to be able to keep up with the hydration demands of our wildlife.100_5308

We have decided that in addition to the normal spring browse, we will fill our protein feeders a total of five times this year. We have four 1000 pound feeders. That will equate to about 20,000 pounds of protein. Last year, I believe we filled them four times for a total of 16,000 pounds and it really affected the look of our deer. They just seemed to exude health. Their coats were shiny and full, the antler growth was great, and the healthy look was straight across the board from does to fawns to bucks.

In addition to protein, we plan to fill our corn feeders starting in August and ending in February. We have a total of 10 corn feeders on our property. And we generally have to fill them about 4 times each year. Last year, we converted the last 7 of 10 corn feeders to a solar panel so we no longer have to worry about dead batteries. Also at all the corn feeders, we plan to put out mineral/salt licks to ensure that the deer get a good amount of minerals as well. 100_5595

Last year, we built two permanent bow blinds. Well, one of them was a kid’s fort turned into a gun stand turned into a bow blind. There was this tornado. Long story. Anyway, we recycle. More on that in a later post.

They are double bow box blinds because My Handy Man and I like to hunt together and film each other’s hunts. And let me just say that I have mad filming skills. Just kidding, I do not. I am terrible. I am inept when it comes to electronics and I will say that gracefulness is not my strong suit either. It amazes me that My Handy Man lets me near him with weapons. One of my goals this year, besides not falling and breaking anything, is to become more proficient with the camera and to do a good job filming his hunts. He does a wonderful job filming mine, it is only right to return the favor!photo

Back to the blinds and the ones we built last year, one of them is for a north wind and one is for a south wind. We did not put metal roofs on them and we have decided that this is a must for where we hunt, so we will be doing that to both old blinds and new alike. This year our plan is to build two more permanent bow blinds. We will probably build them one north and one south again and cozy enough for two bow hunters. That is how we like it. 20140926_135948

We have been talking about picking up two pop-up blinds and setting them off the beaten path. We would like to get a couple more game cameras and set them off in the woods somewhere. The idea of getting the cameras that send pictures directly to your phone really appeals to us. And the wallet keeps getting skinnier. We will see.

Last year, we also built a two person rifle stand. We built it ten feet off the ground and it is very nice as well. I do not think we will be building any rifle stands this year. Neither of us really likes to rifle hunt. Our son does like hunting hogs that way though. So we may build more yet. Plus there are a couple of guys on our property that like to hunt the rifle stands.IMG_0394

I will say that I do like the comfort of rifle stands especially when it is cold outside. The problem is that I fall asleep in a rifle stand when I am all warm and snuggled up to My Handy Man. I cannot help it and I cannot change it. Plus, I don’t really want to. It is how God made me. So I better stick to the cold bow blinds. I have talked to a lot of female hunters and it seems that being cold is a common problem. I am always looking for ways to get warmer. Maybe I can get a Heater Body Suit. Yes I think that is what I will do. Alas, the wallet gets lighter.

I would be interested in hearing about other’s plans for the upcoming hunting season.

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Weathering The Storm

“Obstacles are put in our way to see if we really want something, or just thought we did.” -Author Unknown.

lightening

It has been almost six weeks since I have posted anything. Our life in the past six weeks has been anything but simple. It is a strange thing, but it seems that once one sets their mind to do something, that is when all these things begin popping up to try and throw one off course. Well, we have held steady and kept our eyes on the goal toward a simpler path, but the blogging had to take a back burner for a bit so we could set our feet on some solid ground. storm

The past few weeks have been a roller coaster of emotion for My Handy Man and myself. We have had to deal with a funeral, a wedding, some extended family who seem to want to have a Hatfield/McCoy feud over some stupid matter that should have been resolved with a quick “I’m sorry….Please forgive me…. I was wrong.” A hug and a kiss, and can’t we all just be friends. And as much as My Handy Man and I are bound and determined to stay out of it, it seems as if they are trying their hardest to get us to pick a side. We refuse, we are not becoming part of the problem, but a solution is definitely not clear to us at this point any way. We will just keep praying and hopefully they will listen to a Higher Power than us.

We have had another family member who tried to commit suicide and was placed in a mental hospital for a while. Thankfully, this family member was not successful in taking their life and is out now. I cannot imagine feeling that hopeless about a situation and I cannot say what this person was feeling or thinking at that time. I hope that this person realizes that suicide is not an option and if they reach out, they will always find my hand reaching back out to them. My prayer for this particular person is that they learn to face their problems head on. Life is not easy for anyone and it has not been so ever since the beginning of time.

My Handy Man has found out that he has gone from having a bulging disc to a ruptured disc in his back. He also has a torn rotator cuff in his shoulder. He will definitely be requiring surgery and we are currently awaiting a call for a consult with a surgeon. My Handy Man, in all his stubbornness, says that he refuses to have surgery until after hunting season ends! I love that obstinate man, but my prayer for him is that he makes wise choices and that he makes it through whatever medical procedure is deemed necessary with as quick a recovery as possible.

100_5346On a good note, we have snuck in a few hunting trips and have had a pretty successful season thus far. I will write about those in some future posts. We have a much needed hunting trip planned for this upcoming Thanksgiving holiday weekend. We need to get back out to the middle of nowhere and decompress. We need to be reminded of what we are struggling for and that it is really that important to us.

Better than that though, I have landed a job running my department at work. I have to say that God knows exactly what we need and His timing is impeccable. Just when things are looking impossible, He always provides a way. My prayer for this is that I can learn what I need to know quickly and do a good job for the people that have believed in me enough to give me this opportunity.

We may come in a little behind in our endeavors to live a self-sustained existence than what we first hoped for, but together we will keep on keeping on. Tractor

Categories: Simple Life | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

To Buy Or To Build?

A simple life….. that is what we are reaching for. In the past couple of weeks, My Handy Man and I have been kicking around the idea of building a small, plain apartment/house on this property where we have the opportunity to start our homesteading adventure. We will spend the next 4-5 years on this land before we are ready to buy our own place. Any improvements to be made here will stay behind, but it will get us started and actually be a help to the landowners anyway.  farm

In looking to buy a used mobile home, we have figured it to cost us somewhere in the neighborhood of $15,000-$20,000 once we add in the delivery and set up fees. Then, we will need an electrician to sign off and an air conditioning guy for AC along with a plumber to hook up septic to add to that cost. Then after all that, we have to hope that there is no major damage to the used home either before it is moved, during the time it is being transported, or while it is being set up. That is the risk one runs when buying something used with no warranty.

On the flip side of this is the idea that we can build a small dwelling for approximately the same amount of money. We are thinking of an industrial style building with 2 bedrooms and 1 bathroom. Nothing particularly fancy, maybe an open concept living and kitchen area with only the bedrooms and bathroom being closed off for privacy. We may even use R-panel for siding along with other up-cycled things to help us out. My Handy Man is a whiz at finding such things and I am a quick study if need be. kitchen

A lot of the work that goes into building houses can be done by my husband, with me as his trusty sidekick of course. He can do pretty much anything except wire the house for electricity. This is how he earned the loving moniker “My Handy Man.”

Ours has never been a marriage where we call people in to repair things in our home. That job has always fallen to my amazing spouse, lucky man that he is! What is more, he has never failed me in getting whatever needed doing done.

My Handy Man is in the medical field now, but for years he ran his own construction/remodeling company. He knows how to do things. And best of all, he is good at doing them. Not average good, but a true artist at taking a pile of wood and screws, or whatever medium he happens to be working with and turning it into a beautiful, functional creation. So, I have no doubt that he can build us a nice little place completely suited to our needs. He also happens to have many friends and family with the skills to help us should we decide to go this route. carpenter

So, the idea of building instead of buying really has some pull with us. The landowners are fine with whichever route we take, so it just comes down to us making a decision on what we want to do. In later posts, after we decide which course to take I will lay out the plan in more detail. I just wanted to throw this out there and see if anyone has any thoughts or suggestions on the idea?

Categories: Simple Life | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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