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Friday, June 7, 2013

A Tale of Three Blogs - First one RV Stuff Motorhome parking pad

Oh my myyyy how the last few weeks flew by!  And I have neglected you, sad sorry blog readers.

So tonight I will write THREE blogs!   
One on RVing Motorhome Stuff, 
One on Fiber Stuff and new things I am creating
and if I get to it tonight...
One on Family stuff  around the house and of those adorable Grandtots of ours! 

Okay, first up on deck is the motorhome stuff.  Steve recently changed the oil and noticed a broken wire on the alternator.  It was completely broken off at the tab that the wire connects on to.  At one time Steve had soldered the tab back on, but it was broken free again.  Glad he noticed it before we went anywhere and didn't have any charging to the battery system!   We had purchased an extra alternator a while back to keep on hand, just in case this very thing happened! 

OLD ONE                                                       NEW ONE 

He will take the old one now to Green Bay Rebuilders to have it repaired and refurbished.... and hang onto it for the next time we need one I guess.

Next is kinda motorhome stuff and kinda home stuff... because it deals with making a parking pad for our motorhome.

Since we parked the motorhome here when we bought the house in January, it was mid-winter.  The backyard was plowed out for the motorhome to set on the snow covered grass.  Once the snow melted, we contacted a landscape contractor to come and give us an estimate on extending our driveway back further into the yard,  leveling off the ground, and spreading a layer of gravel.  (we first got permission from the city to do so)   The guy came, gave us an estimate and said it was such a small job, could he work it in between his bigger jobs?  Sure.....   well, each time we nailed him down on a date, he didn't show up!   SIX dates came and went--- with no apologies, just giving us another date and saying he will come again.  We are SO GLAD we didn't pay him anything down.  We were finished with him.

So then I contacted another contractor.  He was nice when he stopped by and said it was such a small job, that he really didn't think it would be worth his time, but he gave me the name of another guy to contact.  Well, that guy's wife handled the call and said he would stop by and give us an estimate that afternoon.  Never heard from him, never stopped by.  I called back and he said he would have to charge me more than he thought because he would have to haul his back hoe here twice.  Once to do the scraping and leveling and then back again to spread the gravel after it was delivered by the gravel company.  He said it's not worth his time to sit here waiting for the truck to arrive.  I agreed and said for him to come anyway. He didn't.   And he didn't call back.  Heck with him!

Soooo Steve and I took the bull by the horns.  We made some phone calls and lined up our own equipment and gravel delivery.  The only problem was it had to be during the workday, Monday through Friday to rent the skidster.  He had to use up a precious day of vacation to schedule renting a cute skidster from a local tractor supply place for 8 am.  We scheduled our own gravel delivery at 10 am.  And of course the weatherman lied about the rain stopping during the night.   It had to rain ALL morning while we did this.  But we GOT ER DUN!

Here he is, driving the skidster down the street, right to our house!  The place he rented it from is only a few blocks away, so he was able to drive it here instead of trailering it to the house.  How great to live in a small town!   Here he is making the first cut into the sod to scrape it level.

Of course, it was raining... and raining some more.  It made the ground very slippery and slick.  The tires didn't have the greatest tread, so he didn't dare scoop up the excess dirt and drive across the back yard to dump it to make my flower beds.  He would have torn up the rest of the lawn and possibly got stuck.  Oh well, I would just have to do a LOT of wheelbarrowing to take that excess dirt over to where I wanted it later.   In the meantime, he just kept scooping it up and shoving it back to the end of the parking pad near the back of our property.

Once he had all the dirt and turf scraped away, we had a scant 15 minutes for a coffee break.  Here I am hanging out in the garage out of the rain.  

Then we heard the rumble of the gravel truck-- ready to deliver our parking pad gravel!  The nice driver was only able to start spreading at about the halfway point forward because of overhead power lines.  But he spread it out as best he could down the first portion of the cleared sod.   Then he had the truck do that big RUMBLE to shake loose any excess gravel.  I swear it vibrated the entire neighborhood!  Our poor neighbors to the right in this photo were blocked in for a bit.  The driveway is ours but we allow them access to get to her garage and parking spot by her back door.  She doesn't drive, but her family comes and goes throughout the day.

From this point, now it was fun fun fun for Steveio!   Though it was still raining, he was inside the overhang roof of the skidster.  I was on the outside with a shovel, rake and can of spray paint to mark where the edges of the gravel drive should go.    I swear I could hear him going "VRROOMMMM VRROOOOMMMMM"  as he played with his Big Boy Sandbox Toy!  

Back and forth he went, moving the gravel ahead and leveling the hills and dales into a nice flat parking pad.  Oh yes, did I happen to mention, it was STILL raining???  See the raindrops in the mudpuddles?

By noon, our parking pad was all rolled out nicely and flat and level!   I hosed all the mud off the skidster, while Steve went in to change clothes and dry off.   We had to get it back by 12 noon as our agreement was for renting it for four hours.   See that big pile of dirt at the end???  That is going to get hauled a wheel barrow full at a time to my flower beds to the far right of the back yard.  Steve had cut down two big trees during the winter and ground out the stumps in the spring.  We wanted to cover that area with flower beds so that is where the dirt is going to go. More on that in the next blog.....

Once Steve returned the skidster, he went in to work for half of the day.  At least we were only losing a half day of vacation time instead of a full one.  By 4 pm the sun was out, the rain had stopped so we decided to drive back and forth and back and forth with the car on the parking pad.   Packing it down nicely, we figured it was firm enough to drive the motorhome onto it.  And it WAS!   Went on smooth and flat and didn't sink in the new gravel at all.  Guess we did a good job!

Soooo this is what we started with... the BEFORE with bumpy grass, unlevel, and not very nice to have grass growing under the motorhome that needed mowing.   And here is the AFTER.....

Then I started hauling the dirt... whew!   It was wet and heavy and needed to get moved before the pile got too firm and hard.  Plus I have a whole pile of bushes and plants waiting to get in the ground.  So here is what I did yesterday..... got about halfway done.

Today I finished hauling the rest of the dirt and got my plants in. 
I will take some pics in the morning and post them in the next blog. 

Stay tuned for A Tale of Three Blogs -- Second one Fiber Stuff 


  1. good golly i'm tired jsy looking at what you got done and then steve went to work. Do you take those energizer bunny batteries out at night ? :-))

  2. My gosh, you two don't waste any time once you get started. I can just picture Steve driving the skidster, and I can picture you moving wheelbarrows of dirt. You guys are awesome!


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