Saturday, February 12, 2011

I'm still here ...

... and feeling rather sheepish about not blogging daily since I'm the one who started the February Challenge.

I've been writing for one of our family businesses and helping my husband set up his new blog.  I've also provided technical assistance for our daughter's regular blog and her photography blog.

In other news, we surpassed 32 degrees today and the snow is getting that mooshy, wet feeling as it melts.  The depth of the snow has decreased as its weight presses down upon itself.  All signs are pointing toward Spring!

In the mornings, I hear birds singing that haven't visited us for some time.  Tiny songbirds are rejoining the chorus that has been dominated by crows and blue jays.

This has been a long, cold winter and we are all ready to move on to the challenges of Spring.  There is much to do around our little place!

Monday, February 7, 2011

This do in remembrance of me ...

Our family has been blessed to join with a local church body once again.  Today marked our second Sunday there.  Communion was to be served, so we spoke with the pastor ahead of time be certain we were welcome to partake as believers.  The scripture, no matter how often I hear it in conjunction with communion, never fails to bless me.

“And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.  After the same manner also [he took] the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink [it], in remembrance of me.  For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come.” ~ I Corinthians 11:24-26

Friday, February 4, 2011

Drip, drip, drip ...

It's a sight I would like to see more of.

I am so weary of winter.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Well, I declare!

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."
American Vision is giving away a free pocket copy of The Constitution of the United States and The Declaration of Independence.  For your free copy *click here*.

While you're at it, might I recommend printing out a copy of your state's constitution?  It can make for fascinating reading.  Did you know that, up until 1975, the rules for dueling were included in the constitution for the state of Wisconsin?  Thus far, I can only find that the statute was removed.  I cannot tell, aside from laws governing assault and murder, that it is actually illegal in our state.  Yes, as I said, it's fascinating!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Miscellany ...

I couldn’t pull together my intended post on “A Christian’s Perspective on Sustainability” today, so please check back for it later this week.  Instead I thought I’d share a few bunny trails that, in and of themselves, aren’t quite enough to constitute an honest-to-goodness blog post.

Blog Re-Design ~ I wasted invested a lot of time today in redesigning my blog, as folks who visited prior to today are sure to notice.  When I first set it up, I thought I’d like a minimalistic approach.  Whether my love of Fall colors finally burst forth or the doldrums of winter pushed me to the edge, I cannot tell.  I only know that I needed *color*.  I hope you like it.  Cutest Blog on the Block provided the graphics.  If you have a blog or Twitter page, it's super-easy to use their designs.  They have many cute graphics to choose from.

Blogging for Books & BookSneeze ~ I signed up with both and Blogging for Books today.  If you have an active blog, you ought to join.  Books are sent to you for review.  The books are yours to keep in exchange for your honest review.

Give-Away ~ Amy at Homestead Revival is hosting a give-away on her blog.  Ramsign, a company out of Denmark, makes high quality enamel signs in many shapes and sizes.  I’m partial to the Lighthouse Oval Address Plaque, myself.  Pop over to Amy’s blog and let her know which design you like because your comment to her post is your automatic entry in the contest.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

We may build our next home ...

When we moved to our place last October, we knew the current house would not be our permanent home.  It is too small and has a poor layout.

We played with the idea of building a steel frame building.  That would require quite an outlay financially for someone else to build the actual structure.  This was my favorite photo among the many we looked at.

I came across an article about cordwood construction a couple of weeks ago.  I was intrigued, so Kenny and I set out to do more research.

Not only can we do this ourselves, but we can personalize it to a great extent.

We are looking for sources for pine.  Many folks can't burn it due to the risk of chimney fires.  We can harvest a good deal from our property and from my parents', but we don't want to thin our woods too much.  Fallen-but-not-rotten trees are perfectly acceptable.

I spoke about alternative energy with a representative from our electric cooperative.  He recommended we visit for the first steps in the process.

Kenny talked with a gentleman from BEC Solar regarding solar power (good choice!), geothermal (not right for us) and wind (debatable).  It will cost about $300 to have an assessment done on our property.

I talked with the plumber that has come so highly recommended to us.  He will do the required next step - a perk test, septic inspection, well test and pump inspection - for about $500.

I also spoke with the area building inspector.  We expected some roadblocks while utilizing alternative construction, but he was very encouraging.  He sent a preliminary packet to us and gave us an idea of how much we can do ourselves and what would require a plumber, electrician or engineer.

Our next assignment is to locate an engineer who will be willing to work with us.  We're considering contacting to see if they can recommend someone.

Of course, since we are building with a commitment to being debt-free, each step will take some time.

Learn more about cordwood construction and view lots of photographs at and on Facebook!