Tag Archives: Handmade

A White House Christmas — Merry Christmas America

For the first time in a very long time my house, your house, the White House has a real Christmas Holiday look and feel within.

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Not Politically Correct Seasons Greetings – Merry Christmas

Tis 21 days till Christmas.
A mess is all around the house.
Even my mouse is seeking a better house.

Think before you spend. Young children are more likely to play with the box your expensive gift came in.

Older children, like me, would prefer to be with family, sharing the warmth of the fire, laughing, getting kid hugs, hugs from older kids, like my 48 year old are some of the best.

Merry Christmas to all

Common Sense Will Avoid Big Debts

Equinox arrives at Tiny Farm on Friday, September 22, 2017 at 3:02 pm CDT. This is the official start of Oklahoma’s Fall season.
Sun rise 7:22 am
Sunset: 7:29 pm

We are still having a few day’s reaching near 100 degrees, Monday’s forecast is calling for a high of 97 degrees, but, most day’s are now topping out closer to the mid-80’s and lows have been dropping into the high 50’s and low 60’s just before sunrise.

The holiday season count down begins.
1 day till Labor day
3 weeks to the start of Fall.
8 weeks to Halloween
12 weeks to Thanksgiving feast
16 weeks till Christmas
17 weeks and it will the start of our 2018 gardening season

Those fine folk at all those ‘mart’ stores are gearing up to relieve you of carrying around all that excess cash. Holiday sales are being advertised every where.

Don’t let all those store and website flashy sales pitches trick you into an impulse buy of products you don’t really need.
Ask yourself, do I really need a TV/entertainment system that cost more that my yearly food expense?

Make yourself a holiday budget and ‘Stick’ to your budget.
Don’t spring for a $1000.00 smart phone when the phone you have is working fine.

Treat yourself to an evening cuddled up with a cup of tea or hot coco and a good seed catalog.

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Dad’s Day To Get The Kids Off To School

Daughter: Dad can you put my hair up in a pony tail?
Dad: Sure no problem


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Grandson’s DIY House Project, July Update

Grandson’s home/hand built house is now dried in. Walls, roof sheeting, windows and doors are in place. Roof, window, door and corner flashing were completed this weekend. Now begins the long and costly process of interior framing, installation of plumbing and routing electrical wiring to wall plugs and lighting. Wall and ceiling insulating (fiberglass R19) will soon follow.

A few isolated thunderstorms have passed over southwest Oklahoma in the past few day’s but in my little corner of SW OK I recorded just over 1/2 inch of rain. Not very helpful, but, it’s better than nothing. So hose watering trees and vines continue.

I must be getting old, when I hear the popping sounds of fireworks my first thought is to set a sprinkler to wet grass neat my tiny home.
This year we have had enough spring and summer rains to produce a good amount of hay. That means that in most places pasture grass lands have been mowed and bailed for hay. Wheat has been harvested and fields plowed. This will be very helpful in limiting the spread of any accidental fires set by careless people discharging fireworks this July holiday.
Just to be on the safe side today I will mow grass and weeds very short around my tiny house, chicken coop and storage building and keep a water hose at the ready in the event a fire does breakout.

I’m not sure if this is good or bad news, but, a good number of city sponsored firework displays have been canceled due to funding short falls.

Happy and safe 4th holiday.

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Handmade Home Project

north east house view

click to zoom in

Grandson’s handmade house project is off and running again this year after an infusion of cash received from his income tax refund check. Grandson’s house project is a multi-year project, but, in the end he will not have a 30 year home bank loan to deal with. This project is being bought and paid for as cash and time allows.

The plan. My original plan called for the concrete slab to be 51 feet 2 inches by 30 feet 2 inches. As with many concrete form-up jobs, things did not go by the original plan. The slab was actually closed to 50 foot 9 inches on one side and 50 foot 7 inches on the other. What the heck, what’s 5 or 7 inches one way or the other. Grin… to late to be overly concerned the concrete is poured and cured.

Concrete slab was poured and red iron steel frame up work was accomplished last summer(2016). Wall height is 10 feet from floor to the bottom of the roof sheeting with a 4 in 12 roof pitch. This year(2017) Wall sheeting, roof sheet, trim, windows and outside doors will be in place in another weekend or maybe two weekends.

southwest view of house Once dried in, grandson can work in a dry environment and begin interior framing of room walls and doors. Installing electrical wiring, plumbing for bathroom, washroom and kitchen.

Note: Carport project is on hold until son-n-law and grandson complete drying in the house project.

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First Speeding Ticket??

This is just to good not to pass on.

1896 Arnold Benz Motor Carriage is largely held to be the very first car to receive a speeding ticket.

The 19th century was a tough place to have an automobile. The law at the time required drivers to maintain a speed of no more than 2 mph and be proceeded by someone walking in front of the vehicle waving a red flag. For reference, that’s a little quicker than the average speed of an ambling cow.

Exceeding the speed limit, traveling at an estimated 8 mph. To make maters worse, no one was running ahead, waving a red flag. He was convicted of speeding and made to pay a lofty fine of a shilling “plus costs.”

Car Port project(1)

Summer project: build a Car Port for daughter and family has begun.
1,225 pounds of assorted steel arrived on sight this afternoon.

Just so there are no misunderstandings. When I say build a car port, what I really mean is son-n-law and grandson will do the real work while I set in the shade, drink an adult beverage while I use a long pointed stick to get this thing standing, welded up and bolted to their existing concrete slab.

First wash the oil off of the square tubing. This tubing is made in Mexico and has a heavy coat of protective oil that must be removed before the steel can be prime painted using a red oxide steel primer.

The cut up list has been developed. Steel will be cut to length, purling brackets and base mount plates used to bolt the up-right poles to an existing concert slab will be welded in place. Primed and painted before being installed.

The car port will be a flat top 20 foot by 24 foot structure 8 feet tall. Ample room for 2 full size cars or pick-up trucks to park.

Cut-up List
7 – bars – 8 inch C-purling 25 foot long
7 – 23 foot 10 inches(roof and frame purling)

4 – bars – 8 inch C-purling 20 foot long(roof and frame purling)

3 – bars – 3X3X14ga square tubing 24 foot long
9 – 8 foot long (up-right poles)

2 – bars – 1-1/2X1-1/2X1/8 inch Angle Iron 20 foot long
8 – 1 foot long(corner ties)
14 – 2 1/2 inches long(purling supports)

1 – bar – 2X3X3/16 inch Angle iron 20 foot long
18 – 3 inches long(up-right pole bolt plates)

1 – bar – 1-1/2X1/8 inch flat 20 foot long
20 – 3 inches long(reinforcement weld on purling ties)

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Purple Martins Scouts Checked Out My…

Purple Martin scout birds were seen checking out my house I set up last spring. However the Sparrows have been trying to move in and they are fighting the Martin scout birds away from the house.

In this area we have 3 or 4 different types of Sparrows, but the most aggressive is the common English house Sparrow.

The English house sparrow is native to most of Europe and the Mediterranean region. In North America it is considered a non-native invasive pest and is not protected under U.S. native song bird laws. It has been characterized as a pest, and poses a threat to native birds. It will eat almost any seeds, but where it has a choice, it prefers oats and wheat.
In my case they raid grain in chicken feeders and scratch placed on the ground to feed my flock of chickens.

I remove their nesting materials from my Martin house daily and given the opportunity I dispatch them with my pellet rifle. However this has not deterred them from continuing to attempt to nest in my Martin house.

In an effort to remove them form the area around the house I am building Sparrow traps. The first trap is nearly completed. It is constructed out of 1/2 X 1 inch welded wire and it is 18 inches wide, 21 inches long and 8 inches tall with 2 entry funnels. With luck I will have it in place and baited before noon today.
Total cost for constructing 2 traps will be around $20.00 or maybe $22.00 US dollars.
** Construction Note: Trap size was based on available wire size. Constructing 2 traps from one 30 X 120 inch roll of wire.

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Seed starter soil bocks

This is way to good not to share.

One of the things you see a lot in the garden center of the hardware store are little “seed starting kits” that come with disks of expanding peat moss and little customized plastic trays. These are charming, and hold lots of promise for the imaginative beginning gardener, but there’s a reason why gardening books don’t […]

via DIY Compressed Soil Block Maker — From the Ground Up