Saturday, April 10, 2010

A third down, two thirds to go

Gee, April is one third over today.  April has always been a "fast month."  Some months are real slow.  Take January, for example, January lasts twice as long as any other month.  April?  Poof, gone.  Looks like that's the way it's gonna be this year, too.

I went to Camp Verde yesterday to print out some photos of the Verde River trip to give to Dex and Jodi last night. Unfortunately, I took the wrong camera card and didn't have any river photos to print! However, Walgreen's was offering totally free 8x10's yesterday--no strings attached. So, I made a made a snap decision and decided to print the photo shown here in 8x10. It turned out great and even Susun likes it. Our hiking is coming along well--the "streak" is four days and counting.
We did the Long Canyon Hill in 28 minutes yesterday even though we weren't hiking "for time." (The spreadsheet now has it's own page linkable at top left.)

Gary came over early yesterday morning to set a trap for a gopher. He had success and we now have one less gopher on the grounds of Second Chance Ranch. Dex and Jodi arrived at 6 pm and we enjoyed a raging "white man fire" and then a dinner inside the straw house. The straw house wouldn't exist without the help of many of our Dear Friends. Brad and Kate and Dex and Jodi are four people whose efforts truly made this place possible. We will be forever grateful for their efforts.

Speaking of the straw house, we received our electric bill today covering the time period of March 21 to April 21. It was outrageous. No, not outrageous in a HIGH sense, it is outrageous in a LOW sense--the total bill (including the monthly service charge) is $12.93! I guess that freezer isn't sucking too much juice afterall.

It's amazing how high a quality of life we can have on one 20 amp circuit!

All-in-all, factoring property taxes, homeowners insurance, electric bill, trash pickup, propane tank rental, internet "dormancy fee," etc. we are paying less than $100 a month(on an annualized basis)to have this place available. Our new "fixed income lifestyle" easily affords this expense. Sure beats camping in an RV park.

My big project for the day yesterday was the installation of four steps on a steep slopes near the northwest corner of the property. I scavanged some old juniper fence posts and augered big holes through them. After much chipping of rocks, pounding of rebar and backfilling of the steps, they were completed about 4 pm. They look and behave very nicely. The steps will make visits from Gary & Robin much safer, especially when they walk home in the dark. Gary also brought over some fresh laid eggs and we're going to enjoy them this morning.

Carrie's Art Bench project submission deadline was yesterday. She received a tsunami of applications at the last minute yesterday and now appears to have dozens of designs from which to choose. We are on the "selection committee" and have until Tuesday morning to pick our Top 20. I can already tell you that fishing lure design shown below will make the final cut! We'll post our our selections Monday.

Have a great day and Many Cheers, jp

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