rodawn, one of the things I just can't understand is why all the new builds out in the country don't have solar in place.
Our area is now full of McMansions and not one has solar. Everyone is on the grid, everyone has a propane tank.
When we moved to this house, we investigated retro-fitting our house for solar. The cost then (for us) was prohibitive, but I wish we could have found a way to do it.
I keep thinking if only I could put the barn on solar, and get solar tank heaters - it would 'generate' a whole lot of peace of mind.
One of the first ways to get solar is by proper orientation on the lot and passive solar, and that is subject to the lay of the land. It's also a regional thing, in CA a lot of the building rules that make things so $$$ have to do with solar/energy loss and gain so the number of sq feet of window area to the sq footage of the room has to be calculated out, the eaves have to be a certain depth, etc. Builders go for a house that will satisfy their customers, and most of the customers are clueless - our neighbors built to face the road when they had a view to take advantage of and solar gain they could have used - all on the advice of the builder - for "resale value". Subdivision house on five acres. ????
Our power company, National Grid, really sucked during the last two big storms, the amount of time it took them to restore power to large portions of the area was ridiculous...they were fined by the Mass AG after the last go around. I did see them out trimming trees aggressively last winter and supposedly, they've stopped skimping on staff. That "Halloween Storm" a few years ago (heavy/wet snow with leaves still on the trees) had us out for 8 days. We FINALLY got turned back on, not by National Grid, but by Energie New Brunswick...those guys drove down from Canada and worked around the clock to restore power. I came home at 10pm to find them on the street behind me, in the freezing cold, they'd been there all day...Dunkin Donuts nearby had their power back by then, so DS11 and I ran over and got them lots of coffee and donuts. Then, wrote a letter to the big wigs at Energie NB to thank them and tell them how hardworking and friendly their guys were.
Just got power back again. I was sitting here trying to figure out the new photobucket stuff on Saturday evening. New since I last used it anyhow. And crash bang shaking house. Big hunk of a black locust came down and brushed along whole side of house. Satellite gone. Electric meter thrown 40 feet into road and smashed. Telephone stuff ripped all out. Even the transformer on the pole across the road. So everything had to be done all over. I so damn hope it stays on this time. It is -10 here right now and is only going down further over next couple days. I do have pictures but will have to wait a bit. I am downright beat. Going to go lay down. I have someone here helping me today and am taking advantage of it. At least the roadways are all cleared now so ppl can get in and out. Farrier stopped by yesterday and brought me food which I thought was so sweet of her. Vet stopped this morning to make sure everyone was okay. There is only 1/2 acre of open land on the whole 23 acre piece. I am IN the woods. Closest convenience store is 7 miles. Out there, way out there. Can't wait to post pics, just too tired to now.
Fred- thank you so much for your concern. It is heartwarming. Our area over the last 40 yrs, to my eyes anyhow, seems to have turned from a nurturing caring community to one which very much seems to be each for themselves. I could never treat others that way and help whenever however I am able. It made me feel good to know you were wondering about me. I sure hope you weathered well, and have your power back as well. I thought of you as well.
Frugal Annie(sp) Your offer gave me tears. Knowing what a lovely caring person you must be just somehow gave me strength to keep plugging along. This has been very hard, no kidding myself on that. I is too bad I live so far away. I have a very hard time excepting things as I feel no matter how bad things are, that they are even worse for someone else. But jeez, I don't know, I think if it were possible I would have happily taken your generator. Maybe I can't do it all anymore. Maybe it has taken this to get that through. NOt so sure what good it will do though. There isn't much I can/would change RIGHT now. I will however not replace my mare when she is gone or my donkey I don't think. If I keep anything it would be a large pony I could drive, since I can't ride, and that the grandkids could ride when they come. Thank you so much for your very very generous offer. It still just blows me away. You must be a very special person. Thank you.
I am in the woods here. House is within 25 feet of the road , the remaining 23 acres out back. The only brook at all if off the property. I am directly at the bottom of a very steep blind hill. Someone going over the hill would not be able to see my horses crossing the road in time to avoid hitting them especially on ice. Then there is the issue of woods. I cross the dirt road, climb down into and out of a big ditch straight into the thick woods for about 75 feet. There you come upon a small creek deep enough to dip a two quart pitcher into from which I fill the buckets. I agree donkeys are smart. But in the 20 yrs I have had this one he has never shown any want to cooperate with that type of going. I wish he did. His A.. would have been hauling water insteads of mine. That land is also not on this property. Not something you take lightly here. Then there is this issue too. Most of the woods on this part of the road were pastures or meadows 50 yrs back. Fairly new trees. So that means that near the road under the grass or the top few inches of dirt there is buried barbed wire. Never fails, always there. Unless the property has been bought and turned into a homestead therefore cleaned up, most of the roadsides all over the state have buried barbed wire.
I wish my bunny WOULD eat damn alfalfa pellets. I did say she was a cottontail. She has different tastes. I have given her every type of bunny pellet, horse pellet I can find. My horses get alfalfa/timothy pellets. I have bough every type of gourmet bunny food I can find. However she does not ever go without, no animal here ever has, even the finickyiest. She came to me a three day old eyes still closed with two siblings. I lost two of them. All literature I found says the chances of saving an orphaned bunny before eyes open is %0 - %10. Guess I did okay saving one. I was told when they were brought to me orphaned(mother killed in road) that they were domestic bunnies. To me they looked like cottontails. Guy says no. My kids stopped taking care of their rabbits so I let them loose. They stick right around. But little bunny milestones, size, eye opening, ears standing etc were not adding up AT ALL. Bunnies weighed from 31 - 54 grams. I was right, she was a cottontail. But before it was a certain fact I had already showered her with my bath of love. My Doberman licked her special formula from her neck after each feeding to prevent the nasties. She would finish what she wanted of her bottle then run up the front of my shirt and nestle in my neck right under my ear. I would then cup my hand around her and rock her for a long time every night. The first night she refused her night feeding I was devastated. I was hurt. I wanted my baby bunny back. That was the end days of june.
The wildlife ppl said she would be euthanized if I turned her in. I thought it best to take the 'getting an exemption' route. She lives in the living room in a very large cage. There is a house on the very bottom, buried in nice grass hay. She keeps two tunnels at all times to her house. She gets very mad when I clean her cage and change things. She will go right to work setting things right. She gets out every single night to run around. The Dobe could care less. The beagle gets put in the bedroom. Can't change how she feels about rabbits, nope. She jumps up on my lap. I have pics of her giving me kisses. She is just the sweetest little thing. WEighs about 1/1/2 lbs. Can you tell I love my bunny. She does not need the stuff I grow for her but she sure loves it. I did manage to save her clover and the lights are back on it. She does have a sweet tooth which I am told they do. I have to be careful how much I let her have. One slice dried banana slice a day is the limit. I feed a few matchstick carrots, a half a grape, carrot tops, arugula, turnip greens, couple tabl. oat meal. These little crunchy things that I pick out of a guinea pig food that the vet okayed. A few pieces of apple every day. And she is always picking at the wood pile every night while on her run. Bark seems important to her. Okay, Im certain if anyone IS still reading they've heard enough about little bun.
Horses are well. Trees holding the hay racks toppled. Never used them unless it was real windy anyhow. I am not even worrying about cleaning up trees. Helped linemen carry away trees for long enough I not starting in here yet.
I sure wish I was smart enough to figure out this new photobucket. I don't think anything frustrates me more than not being able to figure out tech stuff. And it seems the only way I get it is if someone writes it out for me in a way that you would figure you might have to for someone who was a complete idiot. I spent a very long time yesterday uploading pics. I was able to make and name an album just as I have many times. But their simple to use bulk uploader thing is gone. It takes forever and a day to upload. Once done I clicked on albums and my new album is not there. If I click on edit my new album comes up in that list but not where I can use it. At one point I saw a link that said share this album. I clicked on that and was given around five options. To make a link maybe? NOt sure what to do and not sure which option I take. So am stuck. If I figure it out I will post it. I have some pretty amazing tree pics. Or to me they are. You can look for literal miles anywhere here and there are just trees bent from base of trunk to their tips frozen in the ice on the ground. Mainly white birch doing that. The hardwoods are plain snapping off. Pines are bending as much as they can and then snapping.
They say we have another ice storm coming on Monday. Not sure why this kind of hell is pouring down upon us but it is getting old. Today the temp right now is -18 and it is fricken snowing. Going to get 6 inches they said. And that goes by Burlington. We at least double what they get every time. What can you do other than go with it. I wish the horses would run into their run in when they hear a tree starting to come down instead of running out. Again, what can you do with that. They can not think for themselves. Im doing the best I can.
I apparently gave the impression I am all alone here. It is absolutely possible to be very lonely and still not be alone.I am not alone. I am more lonely however than I have ever been. This has been one of the most awful yrs of my life. I have had a SO for twenty yrs. The relationship has taken an awful turn. I do not know if it can be saved but right or wrong I am still trying. At least there is someone here in an medical emergency. He helps what he can. He can't do much. He had a good job. He ran three crews building houses, doing hist,preservation etc. A yr ago I asked him to replace two windows in my daughters older home a few towns over. We were having a tiff about something that morning which helped contribute to what happened IM sure. He was not using his normal caution, was not in a harness etc. WEll down he came. broke both legs just below knee. That healed well enough. But the calcaneous was shattered. I don't mean several pieces. I mean NOTHING left to screw to. They have still refused to do any surgery and say they are not even sure what they can do. A total ankle replacement is what he needs and not what his ins will pay for. Some days he can stand to walk about a bit, some days not at all. If one were to look at the foot, the way it hangs there ill shaped, you would have to wonder how he walks at all. He was not at work when it happened so no workmens comp. No nothing. I thought our relationship was pretty solid. Made it through lots of things that kill other relationships. But this is not going well at all.I can't be everything to everyone.
OH well. Wasn't going to bring all that up but I see where I had caused confusion by saying I was lonely and wanted to clear it up.
I will again check photobucket once a little more of yesterdays frustration wears off. I really would like to show my pics. It is cold like I said so there are some things I need to get done earlier than usual today. I just poke along with my chores and eventually the day passes. WAnt to go get hay again before this next ice storm too. My hay guy is just the best. 25 yrs now. I tell him what I want for the yr. Very minimal grazing here so hay yr round. I get 500 bales a yr and pick them up five at a time in car trunk. He is only three miles away. I usually make four trips twice a month. I do not carry water or hay except to the sled.
I use one of those Kodiak higher sided sleds ppl use ice fishing. Works very well. Its my most important tool here I think. That and my special to me, shovel.
Now that I have bored all to death I will go. Hope I helped to clear up some things. thanks so so much for the concern shown for me. It does make me feel nice and I needed that.