|Lake Charles, LA Hotel Room|
I was supposed to arrive yesterday but due to flight delays, had to return home and try again today.
While I was frustrated with the six hours these delays cost me yesterday, I was happy to get another night at the old farmhouse before my travels. Joe and I took the late afternoon to continue a wonderful weekend, full of really good "deals."
To recap our weekend, Saturday we spent the day completing the leveling of the parking pads upon which, Saturday afternoon, the two new carports were erected.
|Skilled workers erect carports in less than three hours!|
We wrapped up that operation late afternoon and then headed over to look at an island stove I'd found on Craigslist. The stove was awesome and the very large cabinet/counter it came in was worth five times what the seller was asking. New, and without the cabinet, the stove would have cost me $1000, and this one is in very near new condition, with a beautiful custom cabinet. I did not quibble with the seller's asking price of $100.
Of course, Joe, ever in the market for "what ELSE are you selling?" ended up scoring another TON of stuff, including, but not limited to a LARGE bird cage.... for which, together with several sections of vinyl porch railing, several porch posts, several parking cones, a weed eater that looks like a small lawn mower, and other miscellaneous items, he paid an additional $75.
|Bird cage, weed eater...more treasures..|
When we arrived home with our load on Saturday, I looked up the bird cage to see how well we'd done (I know NOTHING about bird cages)...seems our birdcage is worth over $400 new...and again, this cage is in very close to new condition....will it be blasphemy to use it for chickens????
So, Sunday afternoon, it was with the old beater van we did our dealing. We stopped along the road to look at a box truck being offered for sale. The box truck is an old one, 32 years old, to be precise, but it is in working condition and provides instant, mobile storage...ideal for our operations on the farm. The guy selling it was not there yesterday, but I put my vote in with Joe and we agreed he'd try to make the deal to purchase it today.
|Box Truck...Ancient...but excellent storage!|
Meanwhile, the guy next door to where the truck was being sold, was having a yard sale, trying to raise money for his fiancee's medical bills... Me? I looked at it and saw a bunch of junk. Joe? He has an eye for these things.
|Junk or Treasures?|
We returned home with our treasures, and relaxed on the new deck, enjoying the cool evening air.
|Deck in Evening|
With our BIG van filled on Saturday and our BEATER van filled on Sunday we NEEDED that 14 foot box truck! And so it was that I left home this morning at 4 AM, leaving the securing of the van to Joe. Of course, he had other projects to attend to as well, but he was happy to report his success this evening when we chatted.
While I was flying over the US, changing planes in Charlotte, NC and Dallas, TX, Joe was BUSY! He secured the truck for a "deal" that included the following:
- 75% of the seller's asking price
- delivery of the truck WITH a pile of lumber from Mr. Yard Sale (an additional $20 for the lumber)
- Mr. Box Truck Seller is ALSO picking up my riding mower from the pond house and repairing it
And, on the way home from his box truck/lawnmower repair negotiations, he stopped to purchase a dozen eggs from a neighboring farm. While there, he firmed up plans to "harvest" the goat meat from our two goats. This will be our first foray into the world of livestock raising to put meat on the table, but that's our plan. The neighboring goat farmer has agreed to come teach us how and also to prepare the meat for us to freeze. If this works out well, we will likely make the goat purchase, summer brush cutters, fall harvest, an annual process.
Then there was the latest modification to the garage. Our carpenter guy installed the last of the windows to complete the exterior work of our garage makeover project. As completed, we erected a 12 X 16 foot deck which doubles as a carport, and replaced two windows with two doors and five windows. It has significantly changed the functionality and appearance of the place! With this last window installed today, Joe had our little carpenter guy bidding on five small projects we have left to complete, hopefully before our California travels in October.
|Back of Garage Before Final Window Installation|
|Final Window Going In|
|Back of Garage After Final Window Installation|
Well, he is NEVER too busy to catch a few pictures of the "happenings" around the old farmhouse. And this evening, when I awoke from my nap in my lovely hotel room, I was greeted with email containing a surprise photo....it seems our "sticks," those pieces of branches Joe pruned from the trees of the seller who sold us the tractor, those seemingly dead sticks we put in tubs of nutrient water three weeks ago, not only produced new leaves, which we discovered last week, but are BLOSSOMING! What a beautiful sight!
|Apple Blossoms in Fall|
I will have to ask my daughter, the owner/operator of Sugar Magnolias whether she is aware such beautiful growth can come from "sticks." She uses plants and flowers natural to the local environment to create her designs.... regardless, this has been another fun experiment and I am certain there are plenty more yet to come!
Now, I must turn my attention back to work, as that is the purpose of my being here in Louisiana. I am going to really miss all of the excitement at home, but I will look forward to my return that much more!