The Nice-to-Haves

We finally had a totally empty weekend – no reunions, wedding events or out-of-town trips to interrupt our plans for accomplishing All the Things. Now that things like running water, electricity and septic are dialed in (the Need-to-Haves) there are some other projects that we’ve been meaning to get to (the Nice-to-Haves).

So, of course, it rained Friday night.

I mean, hooray for dry, drought-infested California and everything, but come on, man!

Thankfully (for us, if not the rest of the state), it wound out not interfering as much as we had feared and only lasted through the night.

One of our extremely helpful neighbors with a tractor (I think everybody needs a neighbor with a tractor) (unless, of course, you OWN a tractor, in which case you’re way ahead of the game) volunteered to come over and mulch the little common area between the bus and the RV which A.) kept us from tracking an acre and a half worth of mud all over the place and B.) helped keep the dust down once things dried out. Score!

He also graded and mulched a separate spot near a shady walnut tree so that we could re-erect this for the kidlets (a Christmas gift before we moved from our old house):


Although, I will say that the girls were already having a blast playing with some tree stumps on the property… maybe we should have just left well enough alone?

Noah was also able to get some weed-whacking done and build this computer desk from scratch:


Sometimes I look at him and I ask “where in the world did you learn to DO all this stuff?” And I have yet to receive a good enough answer.

 In sum:

1.)  Noah is scouring Craigslist for a tractor of our own.

2.) Lord willing, the dirt and dust will be somewhat contained in the GROUND where it BELONGS.

3.) We are potentially stunting our children’s imaginations by giving them something to play with besides rocks and tree stumps.

4.) I pretty much have the most awesome husband in the world, hands down.

Any questions? 

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13 thoughts on “The Nice-to-Haves

  1. Hey friend, this looks awesome! As you know, I grew up rural and it is the absolute best way to raise kids, IMHO. Love seeing these updates from you!

  2. I think that’s hilarious that you’re stunting your children’s imagination. 🙂 I’ve turned into a cruel mother this week and insist upon my son reading chapter books. Or napping. His choice. I’m potentially stunting my son’s love of spontaneous play, so…

    1. Ha! I’m a mean mom too. They only get to watch TV when we come to my parents’ house and only then when their little brother is asleep so I can actually sit down and type out a post and they are just devastated when it’s time to turn it off. Devastated.

  3. It sounds like you have a wonderful, tractor-driving neighbor. How far inland are you? Do you get any rain in the summer? We lived for a year out somewhere in your “neighborhood” when I was a kid, and I thought I was going to drown! But I’ve been assured that it was a once-in-a-lifetime year…

    Don’t forget the big cardboard boxes for playing alongside the stumps. Oh! Did you see the pin for painting (or coloring) on the inside of boxes? Ridiculously easy and brilliant, and if the wind is blowing, they’ll be on the inside and won’t blow away!

    Noah sounds scarily capable, and I think it’s wonderful!

    1. You know, growing up we had lots of rain. Now that this drought has hit, they’re coming out with reports saying that the past century has been the wettest in California in centuries and that droughts lasting hundreds of years have been common in the past. Sooo, that’s exciting.

      And I would love to see a link for that pin!

      1. Apparently it wasn’t Pinterest (although there are a zillion other cardboard box ideas), so I asked my craftiest friend on fb, but it wasn’t her, either! It was just a picture of a girl coloring on the inside of the box, while sitting in it, but it was very clever!

        And I’ve been singing “It Never Rains in California” for hours now…

  4. That all looks amazing! It’s amazing what little mulch can do. I’m quite impressed by that computer desk. How big is your land? It sounds like you’re already developing great neighbour relationships.

  5. First off, thank you for posting you life on a bus. We have not owned a tv for about 8 years now and when the grand kids come over, guess what they do. They play outside like kids are suppose to. My granddaughter has a great imagination and reads very well. My grandson loves to play with his cars outside. A box is a great toy. Hang in there and keep posting.

  6. I just picked up my own Nice-to-Have today: a building permit! Little House on the High Prairie is moving forward!

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