That’s a wrap

Friday, January 28

We have a closing date – yay! It seems like it’s been a long time coming and I guess it has been. It’s been a roller coaster ride as well but here we are. Two weeks from today our lil’ Dream Valley Farmstead will belong to someone else. People much younger than us, ha! Anyway, the date is a little later than we all had anticipated but it will give us an extra week to eat up some more food and get the rest of the stuff sorted and packed at a more leisurely rate. It’s also supposed to warm up some so that will be helpful during that extra week.

Twenty six bales of hay were delivered today from a local feller and stacked in the barn. The buyers are bringing two donkeys and a cow with them and they wanted the hay before their arrival. We have been in constant communication with the buyers and I must say, they’re on top of things and easy to work with and to coordinate the many aspects of buying and selling a farm.

My comfy sectional couch has gone to its new home. sniff. I enjoyed it while we had it but there’s no need for it on our new adventures and storing it wasn’t an option. Farewell comfy sectional.

I did a tiny bit of packing today. A very tiny bit. Instead I spent the day cooking navy beans (1.5 – 2 hours my foot!) and crocheting. While packing the tiniest bit today I came across a baby blanket that I hadn’t finished because I ran out of yarn. I couldn’t find anymore of that shade of yarn so I had stopped working on it and put it up. Recently I came up with an idea to finish it off with some yarn I already have. The yarn is similar in pattern and if I do it right I think it will turn out OK. I want to get it done and packed away in my ‘goodies for sale’ tote before we move.

Saturday, January 29

We woke to single digit temps and a couple inches of snow. It was lightly snowing when we went to bed but we didn’t think there would much accumulation. We were wrong!

Speaking of going to bed, last night was the first time I’ve slept in a bona fide bed at home since I don’t remember when. Ever since I missed the bottom step in the middle of the night taking LizzieBelle out I’ve been sleeping on the couch. She’s on a diuretic for her CHF so there are many mights where she has to go out in the middle of the night and I wasn’t about to traipse up and down the stairs carrying her (she’s blind) and risk falling again. nope. not gonna do it. So now that my ‘bed’ is gone we brought one of the beds down and set it up in the living room. The three of us were snug as a bug in our queen bed and it felt so nice. However, the living room gets cold and with temps in the single digits it didn’t take long before I was grabbing an extra throw blanket and adding it on top of the flannel sheets and bedspread.

Right before going to bed something told me to check the cabin email. We check periodically throughout the day but this time of the year bookings are few and we aren’t as diligent about checking. Well, I’m glad I checked. We had a booking for tomorrow night. yay! I replied to the booking, got a banana bread out to thaw, then went to bed; downstairs – in a real bed!

I didn’t lift a finger today. OK, I did do one load of laundry, greeted the guests, and washed my dinner plate but that was about it. No sorting, no packing, no nothing. I did book us a reservation at a KOA during our trip down to south Florida and I crocheted. Monday I’ll get back at it.

CountryBoy did all the things today – made breakfast and supper, brought wood in, got the cabin ready and even took a nice long nap.

With the snow on the ground and temps in the twenties it was the perfect day to hang out in front of the fireplace.

Sunday, January 30

Our guests were leaving as I was about ready to go to work. I was going in early so that I could be home in time to go to church tonight for our 5th Sunday sing so that we could sing a couple of songs. However, we soon discovered that the truck was deader’n a door nail. CountryBoy put the charger on the battery while I loaded plants and jellies in a box to hand out at work to the girls. It was somewhat emotional as the plants were ones that I had started. It’s like handing off your babies. The girls were tickled with the jellies and plants so it was worth it. Anyway, back to the truck, after a few minutes it started and I headed to work. Once there, the project I was working on took muuuccchhh longer than I had anticipated and it was six o’clock before I was heading out the door only to discover that the truck was once again deader’n a door nail. sigh. I got a jump start from one of the girls and moral support and tips from another and between the three of us we got the truck started. I made it home but it was too late to go to church. Looks like we need a new battery. sigh.

Monday, January 31

This morning was another emotional day for me as I gathered more plants to take to a coworker. I asked if she would take them and she said she would be honored. I felt more honored that she said yes knowing that they would be well taken care of. We dropped them off at her house on our way to Rural King. We wanted to pick up a couple more bags of feed and another bag of cracked corn so that the buyers would have plenty. CountryBoy had put the charger on the battery this morning when he went to feed Mabel and the chickens. We left the truck running so that it wouldn’t die on us while we dropped the plants off and visited for a few minutes.

Once we got to Rural King the plan was to disconnect the battery, turn it in for a refund then purchase another one just like it. After that we would stop at Walmart for more acrylic food containers, more stuff for the camper and some Pomegranate juice and swing by the storage unit on our way back home. However… we could not remove the battery. Apparently there was another bolt that wasn’t visible or easily accessible so we had to think of a different plan. CountryBoy hooked the battery back up and since we were already at Rural King we got the feed then headed to Walmart. We shopped while they installed the new battery. As we are getting ready to travel it will be nice to have a new battery.

We grabbed a bite of Mexican food then headed towards home stopping at the storage unit on our way. There’s still a good amount of room in there so I think we should be OK with what’s left to put in there. fingers crossed.

Overall it was a productive day and the weather cooperated for which we were grateful. January and February are difficult months to be moving. We moved in here in February of 2015 and we’re moving out of here in February seven years later. Crazy!

Tuesday, February 1

February is finally here! Now the fact that we’re leaving the farm in eleven days is getting real. There is much to be done still. Today we managed to get quite a bit done. The weather was a comfortable and beautiful sixty-some degrees which made it a good day to get some stuff done. CountryBoy sorted through his fishing rods and tackle and chose a few rods to take with him on the road and he stored the rest. He also took some stuff out of the trailer’s storage so that we could put the grill and a few other traveling necessities in there. Before packing the grill he tested it out…

So cool! There’s a bar mounted on the outside of the trailer that the grill mounts on and the grill is plugged directly into the trailers propane line. Easy-peasy! It’s amazing all the new-fangled stuff that’s out there these days for camping.

We’ve also started the process of transferring all the utilities over. Today, the insurance agent came out to take photos of the house, the cabin and the fireplace. I had to take him up to the cabin in the side-by-side. He was appreciative as he said he would’ve never made it up the icy cabin road walking or driving. I bet he never dreamed he would go four-wheeling today while at work!

After he was gone we loaded the trailer with CountryBoy’s lil’ boat and whatever else we could fit on there then headed to town. We stopped at Lowe’s on the way home so that I could recycle a couple of laptop batteries. (If you ever need to recycle cell phones, rechargeable batteries, etc. go to Lowes.) LizzieBelle begged to go with us so we took her with us the first time but I left her home when we went the second time with another big load. Most of the upstairs has been taken care of one way or another and it’s pretty much empty. It’s supposed to rain during the next two days and then snow on Friday so I’ll take that time to completely empty out the upstairs and clean it.

Years ago we watched several episodes of ‘Building Alaska’. They were always trying to work fast and beat the weather which wound up stressing CountryBoy out so he really did not enjoy watching it. Well, here we are trying to work around the weather so that it’s not completely miserable to be outside or so that things don’t get ruined. What can ya do?! It just makes us grateful for the nice days and we try to get as much done as we can.

As I mentioned earlier, there’s just a few things that need tended to upstairs. The storage unit is filling up but we think we’ll be able to get everything in there. I’m sure we’re keeping more stuff that we really don’t need but you just never know. If we eventually find a house I really don’t want to have to buy something that we already had at one time.

I have a feeling it will be an early night. Part of me wants to crochet and the other part wants to curl up in bed at 7:05 in the evening.

Wednesday, February 2

Red sky in the morning, sailors heed warning.

The forecasters are calling for rain today and tomorrow and then snow and ice Friday. Here we go again!

I went to work this morning to work on some computer stuff and to refresh the memory of the coworker that’s taking over the ironing and to answer any questions she might have. It was an easy day.

I came home early afternoon and had a little burst of energy so I tackled some small projects I had been putting off then called the utility companies to have the services transferred to the new owners. After eating some leftovers I spent the evening working on a design for my new blog. Yep, after the eleventh Dream Valley Farmstead will belong to someone else so it’s time for a new blog. I also started working on the new site. I’ll let you know the new name and where you can find it once it’s ready to go. We’re just so grateful y’all have stuck by us and have shared the ups and downs of farm life with us. We do hope you’ll follow along on our upcoming adventures!

Thursday, February 3

A week from tonight the house will be empty (at least it oughta be!) and we’ll be sleeping in the camper here at the farm. The buyers should be arriving some time that day in their RV so the farm will look like a campground for the night.

It’s been raining all day so we took advantage of it and spent the day sorting and packing. It’s unbelievable the amount of stuff we’ve accumulated in seven years. I know I keep saying that but sheesh, it’s the truth. I think what’s been the most difficult is all the little stuff. And all that little stuff adds up to be a whole lot even though we’ve tossed a lot of stuff out. ugh. It’s beginning to be a little disconcerting as we’ve yet to sell the TV stand or the antique couch and we’re quickly running out of space in the storage unit.

It also feels as though I’m not making any progress. I know I am but when I look around and still see so much that needs to be dealt with it’s frustrating. And we only have one week left. sigh. CountryBoy started sorting and packing up the kitchen while I tackled the bathroom. A huge concern we have is our canned goods: where will we put them in the camper and will they be too heavy to haul? Once the rain, ice and snow stop (predicted for this weekend) the nights are supposed to be warmer and we can actually try to find places to put them. Cross your fingers we’ll be able to take most of our hard work from last summer.

We took a popcorn & movie break early afternoon. I needed a mental break so while CountryBoy watched ‘The Incredibles’ I partially watched it and worked on the new blog website and Facebook page. I’m happy to report that both are coming along and should be ready by the time our chapter at Dream Valley Farmstead comes to a close and a new adventure begins.

Friday, February 4

This morning as I was feeding the cats I could hear the sleet hitting the metal roof. Just a few minutes later when I had LizzieBelle’s breakfast ready and put her out back to do her business it had started snowing. The ground was already frozen from the low temps. It continued to snow for most of the morning but it wasn’t a heavy snow so it resulted in only a dusting.

After a breakfast of yogurt with granola, raspberries, chia seeds, and a drizzle of honey I went upstairs to pack the miscellaneous bedroom stuff. We’re starting to panic about the amount of stuff we’ve designated for the camper and the lack of storage in there. Mainly where to put kitchen and food/pantry stuffs.

I also managed to empty the contents out of our glass containers into the acrylic ones and get the glass ones washed and packed. My niece is making some labels for me and once I get those I can finish emptying, washing and packing the rest of them. That’s another thing… I hope the cabinet I have in mind for all our containers will work. And the spices! Good night at all the spices!!! We cook a lot of different cuisines and it seems each cuisine uses their own set of spices. We’ve got them covered that’s for sure. Like tonight, for instance, I made a Teriyaki Chicken Bowl. I made the Teriyaki sauce from scratch which called for toasted sesame oil, soy sauce, honey, brown sugar, minced garlic and ginger, water, and corn starch (I used arrowroot starch). Once the bowl was assembled (rice, vegetables, chicken) you sprinkle toasted sesame seeds on top. I was able to make it spur of the moment because we had all the ‘things’. We also have a huge pantry that could hold all the ‘things’. Now we won’t and we’re not quite sure what to do with what all we have. Looks like we need to pick one or two cuisines and stick with those. Actually, I think cooking and trying to eat healthy in general is going to be interesting while living in the camper. So yea, we’re in a little bit of a panic mode because we’re running out of space both in the camper and in the storage unit.

The weather should start improving tomorrow and on into next week. We will take advantage of it and start loading the camper. That’s when the rubber will meet the road and I’m almost afraid of what we’ll discover.

I kept thinking it was Saturday for some reason. Nothing has been out of the ordinary this week so I have no idea why it felt like Saturday.

Saturday, February 5

After thinking it was Saturday all day yesterday it’s now finally Saturday, ha. I’m happy to say it’s been a productive one. We started by sorting clothes and towels and finally emptying the upstairs. By mid-day we had quite a pile in the mudroom waiting for either the storage unit or Goodwill. Since the ground was still covered in ice and the camper slide-out frozen shut we decided to get the pile out of the mudroom and take it to Goodwill.

The trees at the top of the mountain are covered in ice and look like glass…

This afternoon the sun came out and thawed a good bit of the ice covered ground. The temps remained in the twenties but the slide-out thawed out and we were able to open it. Since the weather is forecasted to be decent (no more snow or ice storms) up until we pull out we thought it a good time to start loading her up. CountryBoy also plugged it in and put an electric heater in there to keep it above freezing. One of our biggest concerns was where in the world, er camper, would we put all of our efforts of last summer – our home canned goods. We were hoping the storage bin under the bed would hold most of it.

It’s a lot of weight in total but the bedroom is at the front (or tongue) of the camper so we feel the truck should handle it just fine and they should travel OK without breaking. We’ve given a lot away but to be able to take most of our home canned goods makes us happy. It’s like we’re taking part of the farm on the road with us.

I also managed to get some clothes hung in my closet and find places for the first aid stuff. We think we’ve also found places to tuck most of the kitchen stuffs so we’re feeling better about the amount of contents we’re taking and where we’re going to put them. We’ll know in a few days whether we still have too much or not.

We also took delivery of some much-needed wood. Our wood fella was going to bring the buyers a load but since we only had about three more days worth of wood left we called him today to bring us some and he did. He’ll still bring a load or two for the buyers but there will be plenty of this load left to tide them over until he does.

This evening I started sorting my camera stuff. My plan is to have two go-to camera bags that will have my two favorite cameras (one in each bag) and the lenses and filters I use most. I got about half-way then stopped to munch on some popcorn and take some time to relax. I’d like to say I’ll finish up tomorrow but tomorrow’s already full with church and work so more than likely it will be Monday before I have the presence of mind to tackle it. I would like to know, however, where in the world I put all my camera cards. hhhmmm.

Saturday, February 12

It has been SIX days since my last journal entry and what an exhausting six days those days have been! Every waking moment consisted of sorting, packing, taking stuff to the camper, taking stuff to storage, and taking stuff to Goodwill. I’m about ‘stuffed’ out. We managed to take a few hours one evening to have supper with my niece and her husband for her birthday. It was an enjoyable night and a much needed break from stuff.

Six days later and the farm is now is the hands of an absolutely lovely family. Very capable hands I might add.

Friday, while we were scurrying around trying to get the last of the stuff out of the house and into the camper they were already setting up temporary fencing for their animals that were arriving on Saturday. We had invited them to come down a couple days early so that they wouldn’t have to rush in setting the fence. Arriving early also allowed us to go over the animals’ routines and feeding schedules with them.

It warmed my heart to know that they were all so excited about being there and they loved every bit of the farm – flaws and all.

The fact that sellers and buyers actually meet, and in this case arrive even before closing, is definitely unusual but selling and handing off a farm is not your typical real estate deal. We’re just so thankful that this family chose our farm to be their new home.

After the last of the stuff was literally stuffed into the camper we hooked up and headed to the closing with our home trailing behind. The closing went off without a hitch. After a couple more stops in town we were on our way to new adventures.

Leaving was bittersweet. I’m not sure how long I will wonder about and miss the cats, the chickens and Mabel – Miss Pig-Pig. Knowing they’re in good hands eases the mind but the heart still hurts to leave them behind. Knowing we’ll be back to see friends and family is comforting and we’ve been invited back to the farm which is nice.

Now that this chapter in our lives has come to a close we want to take this opportunity to thank everyone – those we know and those we don’t – for following along on our farm follies and adventures. If you want to follow along on our new adventures you can find us at Eat.Travel.Chill on Facebook and the new blog with the same name can be found at this web address – https://eattravelchill.com. We hope to see you there!!!

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