"The Place: Our cabin in Missouri"

Discussion in 'Homesteading' started by Dadio, May 3, 2014.

  1. TX-1948

    TX-1948 Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Dadio, I have read your entire thread....and have followed your progress for quite some time...I really enjoy watching the progress as you work on the cabin....and feel a bit selfish in not sharing my own build with others....perhaps one of these days, I will put together a series of pictures chroniciling the ongoing build on my cabin....and I hope to eventually create a set of plans and a material list to share with others....
    I hope your "move to the country" works out....sounds like a nice setup....the development of skills today opens the door for future opportunities....I too believe these opportunities are placed in our life....and what we do with them is up to us.....Keep the Faith.....and keep on building!!
     
  2. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    Last outing of 2015

    I ran out this morning headed to a meeting about 3 hrs away. Suffice it to say that I was ready for some woods time afterwards, so I headed to the place on the way home. Only got to spend a couple hours outside, and was ready to get home when I was done, but even a short trip is good for the soul.

    I had added some leather tie out points to the FR Mesabi, which worked great to attach the blanket.
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    The last fire of 2015. I grabbed a piece of knotty cedar and a couple chunks of, well, I don't know, some hard wood. The hard wood didn't want to split at all, just chunked out. Even as knotty as it was, the cedar made such a great fire. Took some doing though, including making the first split with an axe and wedge and finishing up with the Griffith.
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    Love that little 19" Wetterlings. I just bought a Gransfors Scandinavian Forest Axe from another member here and am anxious to try it out, but it'll have to be something special if it's going to beat out this Wetterlings as my favorite.

    A shot showing how gnarly that cedar was:
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    Could the Griffith survive? Yep.
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    First time using the spine of the knife to create some fuzz. I'm adding that little trick to my regular routine. Immediately caught a spark from the ferro rod.
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    I took down a couple small trees who were crowded against other trees. Next time out I'll lash together a tripod to finish a Bushclass requirement. I also want one for cooking on the fire and for using it as a clamp similar to a shave horse. Not my cleanest felling job, but the little axe got the job done.
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    Well, that was about it. Got rid of another mouse caught in a spring trap. Seems like I get one each time, so maybe it's time to move on to a bucket trap.

    As always, thanks for reading!
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2016
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  3. Larry Mondello

    Larry Mondello Tracker

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    [QUOTE=Dadio;2822034
    Also on my planting list for nest year will be some yucca, again if I can find a good affordable source of some plants

    Yuccas seem to do well in the Ozarks, my place has some that were planted in the 1870's or 1880's. We (2 cousins and I are the landowners) are looking to get the Missouri Century Farm designation, we aren't sure when our Great grandparents first bought it
     
  4. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    I love seeing those Century Farm signs when I travel. My paternal grandmother's family was on the same piece of land from the 1820's until the state took the place for conservation in the 1980's (another reason to hate the Illinois state gov't) . That kind of history and connection to the land becomes less and less common over time, and that's a loss to us all.
     
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  5. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    We got out to the cabin today for some much needed fresh air and a chance to work on some bushclasses. The temp was in the 20's with a little breeze, so the split wood fire seemed particularly appropriate. Grabbed some of the last of the cedar off the woodpile and got to work on breaking it down. This was the first real workout for the GB Scandinavian Forest Axe. I like the extra length over my little Wetterlings, but it's not as handy working one handed. That cedar is great stuff, burns hot and quick, and the cedar is good to fluff into a little nest of fine fibers for the fero rod.
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    Cedar isn't easy to split, at least this bunch wasn't. Too many branches and a twisty grain. Hopefully, this is enough to count for the class.
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    Momio dressed in my son's hunting gear, enjoying the fire.
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    Next up: a combo knocking out two bush classes. I lashed together some poles and made an improvised chair. It's been a while since I lashed anything together, and I'm not sure that it would pass inspection at the local Scout troop, but it held together.
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  6. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    Should have tied the cross piece lower, but it worked to keep my butt out of the snow. I've wanted a tripod out there to hang pots from and a couple other uses.
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    Lunch was pretty simple. Some Mexican hot chocolate, some beef stick sausages from a Missouri butcher, and English muffins. A veritable international affair; very swank!
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    Resource material
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    Last edited: Jan 24, 2016
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  7. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    Almost forgot the obligatory 'axe in the log' shot. It does illustrate the difference between the Wetterlings and GB.
    [​IMG]
     
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  8. CSMMIKE

    CSMMIKE Guide

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    Thanks for sharing. Those charred spots remind me of my Dad's cooking. I still remember the "toasted" sandwiches he used to make over a fire while we were out rabbit hunting or tramping through the woods ISO a Christmas tree.
     
  9. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    Gotta get the daily quota of carbon!
     
  10. cm289

    cm289 Tinder Gatherer

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    What year is that handbook from?
     
  11. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    64, I think.
     
  12. CSMMIKE

    CSMMIKE Guide

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    LOL. My brother Paul swears by burt toast for an upset stomach.
     
  13. hunter63

    hunter63 Bushmaster

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    LOL......Burnt toast and 7-Up.......I hear ya......LOL.
    Hang-over stuff, at least it not real colorful when it comes back up.....
     
  14. Zeeman

    Zeeman Tracker

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    I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed your thread. Very nice of you to share.
     
  15. jstalljon

    jstalljon Woods Wanderer Supporter Bushclass I

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    Nice outing, but disappointed there are no cabin shots! ;)

    I need to get a tripod/camp chair built for my fire pit....thanks for the inspiration. And love that old BSOA hanbook!
     
  16. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    Didn't actually spend anytime in the cabin. Went in and check the mouse traps - none caught, which is good, probably, especially since I didn't see any droppings either. That tripod will be useful, I thing, for cooking and for use as a quasi shave horse.
     
  17. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    Momio and I made it out to the place this morning. It's odd how I feel guilty for not visiting more often lately, kind of like missing church or a bit like not seeing your mom in a while (which I haven't, either,and need to take care of). We took a new way in which avoids driving through some small towns. Road was a little rough but really not bad and it was good to see some new scenery. As we pulled up to the gate a bald eagle in the treeline took to flight - wow, are those amazing looking birds!

    We were concerned that the warm weather would have turned the lane into a muddy mess, but the road was solid, not muddy at all. The mix of clay and rock on the place makes for a fine road bed. Not that a coat of gravel wouldn't be good, but it doesn't look like we will have one of those axle sinking messes we had before.

    The main goal of the trip was to harvest the Jerusalem artichokes (aka sunchokes) planted last spring. I had marked their spot with a couple poles and spotted the stems with no trouble. Used the garden fork to pull up the earth and was pleased about how friable the soil was. Unfortunately,even with a thorough search, only two bits of tuber were found. I guess the deer damage happened too early to allow the plants to store energy into the root system. We released them back into the wild.....
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    So, plan busted, we went for a walk. Momio hadn’t been to part of the land, so I led her over to a small branch of the creek, through a couple natural clearings where the bedrock is too close to the surface to allow much other than mosses and lichens to exist. As we crossed a clearing, we startled about a half dozen deer across the creek and watched their white tails as they bounded through the woods. It was a pretty sight, and I was glad to see that many deer bedding so close to where we hunt.
    We also found evidence of a whitetail who didn't make it. Ever wonder what the "disk" in your "slipped disk" looks like?
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    We wandered down the little dry creek, then circled around to my favorite part of the property where some large boulders have weathered free from the bedrock. Momio found some small galls on the ground, and some pretty quartzite that sparkled in the sun. I kept my eyes peeled for points and arrowheads, but as usual, saw nothing. This was the spot where Momio and I made a small fire and boiled up some tea the day we closed on the property.
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    Found this hunk of iron during the walk. Any idea what it is? Looks like something that would attach to a three-point hitch, but for what purpose?
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    We then headed up the path back to the cabin, and I showed her how to bend dry grass over and then push to break it. We gathered up a good amount and then she practiced using a fero rod on the fine, dry tinder. She tossed on some dead twigs and we sat on the log and watched the small fire. Just a quiet, low stress outing on a beautiful February day.
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    As always, thanks for reading.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2016
  18. SLaRoy

    SLaRoy Supporter Supporter

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    Thanks for sharing Dadio! I am pretty darn sure that the hunk of iron is part of a 3 point hitch snow plow/ grader, just missing the blade. The three point part is clear, but I can also see the part with holes allowing the user to rotate/ change the angle of the blade by pulling and replacing a pin.
     
  19. TX-1948

    TX-1948 Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    This......
     
  20. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    Momio and I made it out to the cabin this morning. It's been a tough week - I missed out on a promotion (a minor and passing annoyance) and Momio is dealing with (significant and becoming chronic) stressors related to her parent's failing health, so some time focused on thing much more basic was certainly in order. It's a beautiful spring day, and the winter wheat and pastures are almost glowing with green. On tap for the day was installing some trim.

    What to do about the trim has been a problem running around in my head for some time now. The cabin is, as I've noted many times before, not square or plumb. Or level, for that matter. I guess they call that "character", but it makes the rehab significantly more complicated. I decided to run a 1X4 along the junction of the walls and ceilings to compensate visually and give me a (more) level visual line. I also decided to repeat some of the trim detail I had added around the window on the exterior. What I'm going to end up with is somewhat of a faux post and beam look. It's not my dream interior, but I think you'll agree that it's not bad, particularly given the compromises I am faced with, not the least of which is that I'm not, and never have been, a carpenter.

    I had to "wash out" the photo in editing, so forgive the quality, please:
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    The little shelf-thingie (I'm pretty sure that's what it's called) on the bottom isn't the actual final piece. I ran out of lumber. I put it in place so Momio could see more easily what it would end up like.
    Here's the detail repeated from the exterior window trim.
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    I didn't bring a hammer and I hadn't left one there, so a quick run to the woodpile and some axe work gave me this mallet for the chisel work I needed to do.
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    There were several of these guys hanging about in the warm windowsill. They don't eat much, so we let them be. That's some thirsty wood there; we'll give it some love when it's painting time.
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    You guys tired of seeing burned hotdogs and my little kettle on a grill?
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    Fires made of scrap pine aren't the bushcrafty-est, but it's better than throwing it in a landfill and it's good, dry wood that feathers pretty easily for a fero rod.
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    Glamour shot of the GB
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    The old homestead's daffodils are up and beautiful. This is the third year we've seen them.
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    A coworker gave me some Samurai Chai tea, which is very tasty, and which Momio really enjoyed. This isn't exactly the same, but it felt good in the belly.
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    A few more details. I passed on bringing out the generator this trip, even though it would have let me use my power miter saw for quicker and more accurate cuts. I have a handsaw, but mostly used a cordless Dewalt circular saw for the cuts. For the lap joints I set the blade to half depth (3/4") and cut several cuts in the waste wood, then cleaned it out with a chisel. It's not the most accurate way, but it works. Also, the large Mr Buddy heater running off a large tank has been a great investment. That's it, really. I've got more trimming to do, then painting and staining, then probably the floors. And I want a big deck running the width of the cabin.

    As always, thanks for reading!
     
  21. hunter63

    hunter63 Bushmaster

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    That "little guy" is an Asian Beatle........We have then by the 1000's......days worth of vacuuming them up.
    Don't hurt much but stink....and can get everywhere.
     
  22. dude5767

    dude5767 Scout

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    They can also bite and some people are allergic to the secretions on their feet which may then cause a rash. I found this out first hand last fall.
     
  23. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    A couple other notes: I put out a "wildlife block", which is a way of saying a block made of salt and molasses and maybe some minerals. I've never done used that before personally, but I saw where a stump he placed a block on and even the surrounding dirt was eaten at a friend's place when he did something similar. It will be cool to see if/how quickly it is being used.

    I'm seriously thinking of spreading a thick layer of sand around the block to see what kind of animals are using it. Kind of a sand trap for foot and hoof prints. Maybe even keeping a supply of plaster of paris on hand to make some casts. Anyone done anything like that?

    I've got one small puddle in the new road, which is pretty good for as wet as it's been. I am trying to avoid it so it doesn't get deeper, but I need to go out there with a shovel and see if I can't reshape the edge of the road to make sure water can get off into the ditch there. Have to say I'm pretty pleased with the road even if the contractor himself has been a struggle.
     
  24. dude5767

    dude5767 Scout

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    When I was growing up we had horses so of course we had a salt block in the pasture for them. Deer used to come out of the woods and stand next to the houses to lick the salt block, it was so much fun to watch and amused my grandpa to no end. Thanks for bringing back some good memories. I don't know anyone who has done the sand trick but it couldn't hurt to try.
     
  25. hunter63

    hunter63 Bushmaster

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    Had salt/mineral blocks for years......
    Now they are illegal because of the Chronic Wasting Disease is supposedly spread by saliva....so salt blocks bait piles are discouraged.
    Located in the tree-line that separates the bottom field from the terraced banks....is a natural run way.....for everything.

    When we first got our "Place"..... had a dead tree that fell over, was hollow, so chunked it up and made several salt "stumps".

    An added feature was cracked corn or oats dumped in and around on the ground.....

    The result was bare clay dirt/mud.....great for tracks......
    Never gave a plaster cast a thought, good idea.

    Was walking up to it to check it, and noticed a red-tailed hawk in the oak tree waiting for the mice, squirrels, and birds to come in for a free lunch.....and I realized I was looking at a "food chain" in action.

    Lots of drama unfolded before my eyes.

    Made a blind out of old round bales, that the framer left behind....moved them into a square, overlooking the feeding station.

    Set up your game camera,..... you will be surprised at what you will see.......(great improvement that they didn't have cheap ones 25 years ago)
     
  26. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    RoyD ran up from Kentucky to hang out at the place with me for a couple days. As usual, it was a mix of projects and just visiting. The weather was pretty nice for early April, with lows low enough for a hard frost in the morning and afternoon temps high enough that short sleeves were appropriate. Lots of photos here, so I'll narrate as we go.

    Not totally sure we brought enough cutting implements for two guys. A nice mix though: everything from a couple Gransfors through Snow and Healey, a Woodsman's Pal, a no-name full size American, a Plumb hewing axe (thanks Larry!) and a Forest Service multipurpose axe/tool. Add the chainsaw in the back of the pickup and I think we had the bases pretty much covered.
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    A decent mix of blades as well. I was rockin' a modified Old Hickory, while Roy brought the high-end stuff - some Randall's and a ML, to be exact. We ran through a couple magazines of 22 out of the Buckmark at the pop up target.
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    One of the projects was to burn up a bunch of that old oak that fell last winter. We made a dent, including the two big sections of stump.
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    The other main project was to wrap up the trim work on the interior, which we did. This was a tough one for me because I don't like faux crap - but here I think it was the best option without going crazy on the budget. The kitchen side was more to my liking with the structure of the place exposed and finished off. In the main part of the cabin there wasn't that exposed structure. I don't know if I can explain it, but I like buildings where there is an intuitive understanding of how the place is put together, and the engineering of the space is just "out there" for those who care about such things. I think that's why I like log cabins and timber framed buildings, as well as industrial design, so much. (Keep in mind that I'm on some pain meds and flexaril as I type this - my back is extremely tight and I feel like someone inserted a phone set on vibrate into my foot - so this may go off tangent.) In any case, I wanted to bring some of that into the cabin and tie the two halves of the interior together. I think I was successful. The Rorschach on the floor is just spilled water, by the way.....
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    Various other photos. We had a good time, ate some tasty grilled protein, and made some more progress. It's generally unrecognizable compared to how it started. And that is a very, very good thing, because it was a nasty pit of a place when we began. Been a fast two years, folks! Really hope you have enjoyed the ride.
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    Not a weekend without some sort of sausage on the grill
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    More axes stuck in logs.....
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    Again with axes in logs? Geez!
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    Once again, thanks for reading. (Apparently 10 is the max number of photos in one reply, so more to come.)
     
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  27. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    The luxuries of cabin life: tea, an Evan Stinson carved spoon, and griz protection:
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    Morning grub
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    A good ending to a good day.
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  28. hunter63

    hunter63 Bushmaster

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    Thanks for bringing us along......
     
  29. dude5767

    dude5767 Scout

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    I never tire of these posts. I live in central Missouri north of Columbia and dream of one day being able to do what you're doing. I also find the plant pictures very informative. As was said before thanks for taking us along.
     
  30. Siberian Nomad

    Siberian Nomad Scout

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    I never post on here but just wanted to say thank you for all these posts. I find it somehow relaxing just to look at the pictures and read what you're up to, maybe 10% as relaxing as actually being there but way better than nothing.

    So yeah, thanks!
     
  31. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    My favorite months are April and October, at least as far as weather goes, and it was a picture perfect day out at the cabin. Did a little mowing while Momio worked a bit on some paperwork for her practice, and then we took a walk looking for some morels. I'm still perfect as far as mushroom hunting goes - I've never found a morel in my life. On the other hand, I'm not particularly dedicated at it. Some photos (lots, actually).

    Dogwoods were out in force!
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    The Place had set some nice appetizers out for us when we arrived. Momio wasn’t all that impressed with the wood sorrel, even though this one was pretty lemony. I enjoyed it at least.

    [​IMG]Dogwoods were out and stunning!


    A couple plants I don’t know. Any thoughts? (Edit to add, the second appears to be a Rue Anemone)
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    Wild garlic was poking through the grass down by the creek. I snacked on this, sorrel and some spring beauty. Probably the healthiest stuff I’ll eat all week.
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    The place is skink and snake central. We roused this blurry guy and a sleepy little brown snake while moving the woodpile.
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    New snake habitat.
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    Momio hadn't seen the trim up and stained, and was pretty impressed with the progress.
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    As always, thanks for reading!
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2016
  32. J. Galt

    J. Galt Tracker

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    I really enjoy this thread. You have a nice place.

    Can you provide any info on the kettle shown in post 370?
     
  33. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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  34. hunter63

    hunter63 Bushmaster

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    Bet you enjoyed the good weather......and the greenery.
    Thanks for posting....

    We arrived at out "Place" last Wednesday, small brush and tree were filled out yet.....had warm weather, 60's and a little rain...everything exploded.....full blown green in the woods.

    Little early for morels here haven't seen or heard about any yet...none in my favorite spot.....if they are up there I can start looking in more places.
    Catching up on clearing winter blow downs, and the first mow of the year......river must have flooded a bit, brought me a log...had to be moved off the lower field....so the farmer can disc and plant.

    Glad winter is about done.
     
  35. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    While we've made several trips out to The Place since the last update there's not much that's photo-worthy. Since signing a contract on the new property we've been reduced to basically maintenance trips - mowing and trimming, etc. No planting of more trees or bushes or gardening. Just as well, really, as about a month of essentially no rain would have been disastrous for the plant-and-forget style we have to employ out there.

    Still have some projects I want to do, mainly finishing the interior gable walls and painting. That will come later in the summer.
     
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  36. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    A couple photos from our trip out today. We did a little maintenance and tried to burn some scrap but mainly just enjoyed the trip together away from the phones and distractions of the week. Have to admit, though, that the prospect of the New Place is taking some of the shine off this property. On the other hand, even the weeds are pretty.
    [​IMG]

    Glad we found this rather than its former occupant.

    [​IMG]
     
  37. hunter63

    hunter63 Bushmaster

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    So...Are you keeping this "Place"?...... now that you are closing on the "other Place"?
    Reading thru didn't see a mention of it.

    (Gottcha, Thanks.......)
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2016
  38. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    We've spent the last few weekends finishing up the interior drywall and trim, mostly, but also just enjoying getting away from home and hearing birds and the breeze in the leaves rather than the neighborhood dogs and traffic noise. We got the last of the drywall up on the interior gables and added the trim. Still aren't sure what to do, if anything, about the finish flooring. We may just leave it subfloor.

    Next weekend we will have some help and get the new trim all stained and the interior walls painted. We are starting to move the leftover building materials to the new property as well.

    As always, thanks for reading!
     
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  39. Hawaii

    Hawaii Supporter Supporter

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    Awesome read Dadio! I had no idea of this thread. Really looks like you put a lot of sweat some blood and maybe some tears into this place. I sure would be putting some tears of joy into that oak missing the cabin by a few inches it looks like LOL. Looks like the patterning on the cut wood is some spalting.

    P.S. you take some great pictures too, its nice to see other beautiful country. Looks like a real special place.

    John
     
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  40. Aurelius

    Aurelius Scout

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    I love these posts! Great to see where you started and where you are currently! As far as cooking in the cabin, I see you have a little propane stove. Do you run through those canisters quickly? I bought an adapter for my Coleman two burner stove and can hook it up to a 20lb propane tank now. It has lasted me a long time, but we use it several weekends a year.

    Anyway, thanks for the updates!
     
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  41. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    Those one pound canisters last quite a long time, at least a couple months of occasional use. We really mainly use them for breakfast, though, as we tend to grill or use a Dutch oven for meals. We also typically take sandwich makings and chips.

    I'm glad you enjoyed the thread. It's been good to chronicle the last couple years.
     
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  42. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    We've been out working on the cabin for the last few weekends, mainly finishing up some little things that would bug me to leave undone. One of the big accomplishments was trimming out the rafter ends. As you can see, the wonky nature of the old building made it kick out toward the south end, but there's no fixing that, really.
    [​IMG]

    My son and daughter-in-law helped out a bunch. Nice to have some young limber backs when you are doing this stuff.

    The number of properties I'm trying to keep up seems to be multiplying, so opportunities for doing work out there is getting a little harder to find.
     
  43. Dadio

    Dadio Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    We've been hitting it every weekend the last couple months and keep knocking it out. The soffits and facia look good with green trim and the interior really has come together.

    We burned up some scraps too damaged or small to be of much use.
    [​IMG]

    I did start it with feather sticks and split down pine, so it was at least a little bushcrafty!

    I'll move the leaning stands to the new property next weekend. I've got a ground blind if I can get around to hunting this land.

    As always, thanks for reading!
     
  44. Naturalist

    Naturalist Guide

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    Great job on the thread here Dadio.

    Wife and I moved from MO to MN and sure like the wildflower pics, etc. of the area you're at. I've got a 6.5 acre farmstead in MN and we are visiting the kids here in Jeff City and Columbia over Christmas.

    Have a very Merry Christmas and keep the updates coming.
     
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