This blog is about our travels in our solar powered "Airstream" and living off grid, in our passive solar home, near Bancroft, Ontario, Canada.

If you have any questions send us a comment; we love to hear from our readers.
Click on pictures for larger view

Monday, 31 October 2011

Axle-Tongue Lodge

Dave moved in this weekend. He calls his trailer the "Axle-Tongue Lodge"  He plans to stay all winter which will give us some additional security on our property and peace of mind as we travel.

Can you see the lodge sign on the side of the trailer?

Looks a little "red neck" but what the heck, Dave is happy and so are we.

This time next year we hope to be living here. Lots to do before that happens.

Our well is capped, as you can see, now we need to get the pump and run the lines inside.

Every well is registered in Ontario, and the land owner is responsible for its maintenance.

Afternoon sun, our "great" room will be flooded by sunlight all afternoon.

Thanks for stopping by. We are now on the road heading to Peterborough for the night, trailer in tow.

Sunday, 30 October 2011

We Have Water

Joe and crew came on Friday while we were in Brampton. They pumped water under extreme pressure into the 340 ft well shaft in the hopes that some cracks may be opened and water flow into our well. It worked and now we have 185 gallons of water with a flow of 3 gallons per minute. We are happy.

Friday we stayed at Winston and Bonnie's place and had a lovely time. Thanks for looking after us so well.

Saturday we gathered at Paul and Olga's for another delicious meal and wonderful time with everyone.

There was no shortage of food and the dessert table was to die for; time for me to walk around the block a few times.

The kitchen was a popular place for everyone to gather, especially those who wanted seconds for dessert.

Paul cooked the chicken and spiced everything perfectly.

Sherri and uncle Andrew share a special moment while ...............................

Tien checks out the food selection.

Thanks everyone for a fabulous weekend; we got home at 11:30 after being stopped at 2 "Ride" spot checks run by the OPP. Guess what, no problem!

Friday, 28 October 2011

340 Feet

Yesterday Joe drilled all day; went down 340 feet and this was all we saw.

The different shades of  wash that came out as the drill went further into the ground.

This is the drill bit, no problem going through granite, just couldn't find water.

Mary watched the slag come out, hoping there might be some gold in the wash. No gold, no water.

Another section of drill shaft is raised and then attached to the drill. We now have 17 of these sections down our well, but no water. Today they will try and pump water under pressure to see if the can fracture the rock and find water. We will see........................................................

Sunrise this morning -4*C

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Happy Workers

Last night Mary commented that the guys working here a happy bunch. It is a delight to see these guys work together, and be happy about it. Every job site should be this comfortable.

Our happy crew taking a "soup" break. It's cold and soup helps warm the body.

Today, Joe Legge is here with his crew, drilling our well.

We now have father and son working here. This is Kent's son Nik, who is doing a co-op placement with Joe for this semester in school.

Joe, works the controls and jumps down every now and then to make adjustments. Note that everyone is wearing ear protection, this machine is noisy.

Looks like they are drilling through bedrock, dust and mud is blowing everywhere. How far down before they reach water? Check back tomorrow.

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Window Installation

Today's assignment was to get the windows in. Some windows need brick mold attached, others were ready to be installed once everything was level.

These windows are heavy, as you can tell by Dave's expression. I was glad we had lots of muscle to do the job.

Here Pat checks to make sure the window will sit level in the buck.

Pat steadies the window from inside while Jeff, Kent and Dave work outside.

TJ is the cutter. He installed the brickmold before the crew could place the windows into the bucks.

Once the windows are firmly anchored, Mary was busy scraping the stickers off.

This is the south west corner, Mary's quilting room. Looks like landscaping will be next summer's project.

Monday, 24 October 2011

Fibertec Windows

Today our windows arrived. These are massive windows, triple pane and encased in a fibreglass frame. We believe these windows are the best we could find and they will keep us warm on those long cold winter days in Bancroft. The guys did a fabulous job of unloading everything very carefully and we didn't break any. So when the last door was unloaded, I breathed a huge sigh of relief and now can watch relaxed as the guys get them installed over the next few days.

Our windows and doors ready to be unloaded as soon as the crew arrived.

Did I say huge, that window is taller than TJ on the skid and TJ is no midget.  That's Jeff holding the window steady and checking to make sure Mary gets his picture. Yes, my name appears on the photos but Mary was the one behind the lens today. She got some great shots.

Of course I got the bobcat stuck, so Pat suggested a little extra weight on the front end might help get us out Voila, it worked! Look who jumped on for the ride, only the brave.

We needed everyone for the windows on the south wall. Thanks guys, you are so appreciated. Hope there are no aches and pains from today's work. If you are looking for a great builder check out HavenCraft in Bancroft, these guys do it right the first time.

Thursday the well driller comes and Friday the roof goes on, if the weather co-operates; then we are heading down the 401.

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Titanium Wrap

White Top Roofing is installing our steel roof next week. Friday they came and put down the titanium wrap and then strapped the roof in preparation for the steel roofing.

Can you see the extra strapping in the valley? They will install "Ice and Snow" shield there before the steel roofing goes down. We should be weather tight once the roof is complete.

Even on the "gable" ends there is extra strapping for the edge moulding to cover the roofing.

Done. Next Friday the steel roofing arrives and hopefully by the time we leave the job will be complete.

We will soon be on the road, heading south to Arizona. We will not be able to update the blog once we cross the border as we need to activate our Verizon card again. I expect we will be without internet access from November to the end of December unless we can find free wifi in coffee shops along the way.

Friday, 21 October 2011

Death in the Family

My good friend Earl Copeland passed away this morning. Earl loved to talk about "old" Brampton and life before he retired. (of course he didn't retire until he was in his 70's; that was just the way Earl was)

We had a lot of wonderful visits and he will be missed by his wife Ruth, his children, grandchildren and friends.

Rest in peace Earl. You enriched every life you touched.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Concrete Floors

Today was cold and wet, a good day to get out of the trailer, so we drove north to Cumbermere  with our builder to inspect a home he built last year.

Mary was particularly interested in the finish of the concrete floor. This is an issue she wants resolved before we hire a contractor to do the work. She was happy with what she saw.

The floor has a lovely patina to it and is much smoother than it looks.

Radiant heating is wonderfult but it wasn't on when we visited since the owners only come up on the weekends.

Something you don't see but we could feel walking in our socks was how cold an unheated concrete floor is. It really makes you feel cold. Hope the opposite is true.

The kitchen sink caught our eye and we liked the size and depth of it.

Tomorrow our roofer arrives if the weather co-operates. Check back in a few days for new pictures.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Back on the Roof

With all the wet weather lately it has just been too dangerous for the guys to be putting plywood down on our roof. Yesterday we did see the sun from time to time, also some rain but the guys persevered and we are about ready to start the steel roofing.

Here the crew is working on the section over our covered deck. We will screen this in next year and be able to sit out during bug season.

Same spot different angle.

We will use the boulders in the foreground  to stabilize the hill. Mary has definite ideas about the landscaping around the house and I know when we are done it will look fabulous.

Looking out our living-room window, October 18th. Trees are bare, winter is on its way. Time to leave Dodge.

Progress as seen from the north end parking lot.

Once again the "bobcat" was useful.

Yes, the guys wear their safety harness whenever working on the roof.

Thanks for stopping by. I'll have more pictures once we get the steel on.