Monday, September 19, 2016

The North 20 Fence

Finally! After several weeks of really hard work, the north 20 acres are now fenced. We turned the horses out into their new pasture last Thursday and they are loving it.

You can see some fall color in the Aspens in several of these pics.

Having this much pasture (about 35 acres for the 3 horses) is going to save us a bunch of money on hay. And, it is such a pleasure to see the horses out in the wide open spaces living more like they were created to live.

Goldie's New Yard

As winter looms in the not too distant future, we have been thinking about a yard for Goldie where she would have protection from the elements when we have to go away. We also had started thinking about another shed at the end of the driveway and near the house. We came up with the idea of making the yard extend from the end of the deck and attaching to the shed where Goldie would have a sheltered area and a warm dog house.

Here's a pic showing Goldie in her yard that extends off the left end of the deck:

She can run free from the yard onto the deck and around the house to the other end of the deck on the east side. She really gets her exercise and can watch over everything on all sides of the house. The shed will be built to the left of the yard where she will have shelter and a dog house.

Here Goldie is using her vantage point from the deck to watch while I'm out feeding the horses:

She's a great watchdog, alerting us to killer bunnies, man-eating deer, etc.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Big Ducks, Little Ducks

The baby ducks have been moved out to the Duckagon with the big ducks. They are separated from the big ducks for a bit until they get a little bigger.

After putting them into the Duckagon, Laurie had to "encourage" them to come out and explore.

The big ducks and Goldie were very interested in these new additions.

It's amazing how fast they grow!

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Ducklings Have Arrived!

Two days old, and pretty darn photogenic!

Whitey (White Layer)

Blackie - Cayuga

Fawn - Fawn & White Runner
Cocoa - Chocolate Runner
Harley - Welsh Harlequin

Quinn - Welsh Harlequin

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Two Years Later

This photo, taken this morning, is what the property looks like now, just 2 years after the above banner photo, which was taken just before we bought the property. We have really enjoyed our home and property, and are still amazed that we live HERE!

It's been nice to "take it easy" a bit, and not feel so pressured to work on the house. We still have a lot of little things to do, but the major part of the work is behind us. We've had some visitors come enjoy the guest house (the RV), and feel like we know more people here in Guffey than we ever did in Wellington. We've enjoyed riding the horses with new friends as well as work with training, and yesterday we took time out to ride to the top of Black Mountain, which overlooks our house. It's nice to be able to take off and ride, which we didn't do much at all last year.

Last week Tim completed the first phase of fencing the property. The "South 20" is now fenced and the horses are enjoying much more area to roam and graze. Eventually we will get the north side fenced as well, and will be able to alternate pastures or let them roam the full 40, with the exception of the area around the house.
This photo looks south from the same hill I stood on to take the view in the previous photo. We only wish we could see through the hill to see the horses when they're on the other side!

The inside of the house is mostly done, and entirely live-able. This panorama looks south, over the living area & tv room to the view out the big picture windows.

This panorama shows the back half of the house, including the kitchen and bedroom.

The kitchen is still in its temporary state, with a make-shift counter and temporary shelves & cabinet. Tim will be building cabinetry in the fall & winter, but until then it is completely functional. Our plans for the bedroom area include custom-made desks and a murphy bed that will become a sofa when not in use as a bed. The bathroom and utility room are behind the kitchen wall.

Goldie has been a great addition to the household. She enjoys being out on the deck, watches everything, and alerts us when anything strange enters the picture, like these deer. She's learned to heel nicely, has learned to stay near us when off-leash on the property, and to come when called. It's nice to see her run and play like a dog should! She loves to play ball, and has learned to get the ball out of the container where it's kept. On hotter days she stays quietly in her shady pen below the deck and when we leave home she can stay there out of the rain.

All in all, we're happy and healthy and glad to be here.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

The Results Are IN!

Goldie's DNA results are in! She is........drumroll............
50% German Shepherd (to Tim's delight)
25% Boxer
12.5% American Staffordshire Terrier
12.5% American Bulldog (but "iffy" on this one, may be a mix)
Now that we know, we can see the German Shepherd  in her, and also the Boxer (her face and ears). Tim is delighted about the GSD, as he has always loved his German Shepherds. She sure is a cutie!

She has been a delight to have around. She has very few discipline problems and it has been fun to begin training her. She is amazingly calm for a puppy of 8 months, and overall is a pretty good girl. She sits nicely, "shakes" and is learning "down". She "stays" for short periods of time and at short distances. She has never had an "accident" in the house. We are working on teaching her to heal, but that is a challenge. We've been searching out different training methods, and trying to pick the right one (or combination) for us and for Goldie. Every dog and every situation is different, and I don't think there is a "one method fits all" approach.

In the evenings she has begun to entertain and exercise herself. Tim has put a gate across the open end of the deck so she can enjoy being outdoors and watch us when we are around the house. She entertains herself quite nicely with a couple of toys out there. She occasionally runs back and forth, back and forth, sometimes carrying a toy, sometimes not. It's quite entertaining for us as well. This evening she appeared to be trying to catch snowflakes as they came down.

We've been calling her the "wonder dog". Prior to receiving the DNA results, it was "I wonder what you are?" And of course, there's "I wonder where you've been all your life. I wonder why you were in the shelter. I wonder why no one else took you before we showed up." Whatever the answers, she certainly is a "wonder dog" for us and we're glad to have found her.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

All That Glitters ... Is Goldie !

For a while, we've been wanting to fill out our menagerie with a dog. I (Tim) have always had dogs around, while Laurie's family was a cat family. We've been watching Craig's List as well as checking out animal shelters. Laurie spotted a 7 month old puppy at the Humane Society that peaked our interest. We went to see her and it was a perfect match! "Chantilly" had just come into the shelter and they don't let them out until they are spayed. So, we had to go back the next evening after her surgery to pick her up. That worked out well, as we had to make some preparations at home before we were ready for her. Of course, one of the vital preparations was to pick out a name. We decided on "Goldie".

When we picked her up, she was still under the influence of the anesthesia. She tried her best to look around while driving home, but most of the way she just laid down and snoozed. I made a crate for her to stay in the house to aid in housebreaking (if necessary). As you can see, the crate didn't phase her. She was too "pooped out" from the surgery.

We were told that she is a German Shepherd/Lab mix. However, we're not convinced of that. We're splurging ($70) for a DNA test to see what she really is. We'll let you know when the results are in.

When Goldie got more alert, we let her roam the house and get used to her new home.

It turns out we didn't need the crate at all, as Goldie is very good at "holding it" and hasn't had a single accident in the house (yet).

She has to wear a cone most of the time for about a week, to keep her from licking on her stitches. We got a nice, soft pad for her to lay on. Of course, we also got her a few "chew toy" selections. She really likes the rope (a whopping $2 investment). Here, she took her rope to bed with her.

We're taking her on walks, introducing her to the horses and ducks, etc. She has been a great addition to the family and we look forward to many years of companionship.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

CO'd in CO

WE DID IT!!!! We got our final inspection and received our CO (Certificate of Occupancy)! There is still lots of inside finish work to do, but we will be sleeping in our new Happy House from now on.

Here's a pic with our friendly neighborhood Park County Inspector (Kim Hall) handing us our final inspection approval:

We have a functioning bathroom (with a real shower, as opposed to the dribbler in the RV):

We moved the bed in: 

and we have a functioning kitchen: 

OK, so it's not ready for Better Homes and Gardens, yet. But, it will be one day!

This weekend we start putting down the hardwood floor. But, there's a real sense of accomplishment and relief to hit this milestone.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Working on the Bathroom

We're working on finishing the bathroom now. Actually, Laurie is doing most of the work at this point. She textured the walls and is now painting them:
She looks like she's having WAY too much fun!

Here's a shot looking into the walk-in shower: 

Laurie will be adding the grout to the tile next. At the same time, I'll be putting down the floor and installing the vanity/sink and toilet. If all goes well, we'll have a fully functional bathroom in a few days!

We're getting really close to getting our final inspection and CO (Certificate of Occupancy)! We're shooting for CO on Feb 29 (leap year day). Keeping our fingers crossed.

After that, we will be done with inspections and can move in whenever we decide to!

Looking Up

One of the very unique features about our round house (think "yurt" but not made out of canvas) is the peaked ceiling with the sky dome at the top. It really adds something unique to the feel of the house. It's hard to describe until you experience it.

I finally finished all the woodwork on the compression ring (on which the sky dome sits), all the tongue and groove pine and the finish trim between the ceiling segments 8' down from the top. The rest of the ceiling trim has to wait until the wall trim is installed as the ceiling trim butts to the wall trim.

Here's a pic:
The compression ring and trim between ceiling sections is blue stain pine (also known as beetle kill). The tongue and groove is #2 white pine.

This pic is looking straight up thru the dome: 
The dome really admits a lot of light throughout the entire house.

This pic shows the ceiling and walls looking out the front windows (what a view, eh?):
The trim is not all done yet, but it's starting to take shape! Notice the wall on the left with the propane stove. Here is a closer pic of that wall:
This wall (and one other) is faced with blue stain pine. We really love the richness and character of this wood.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

All Decked Out - Part II

A while back, I had a post called "All Decked Out". This showed the completion of the deck. However, the railing was not up. So, here's "All Decked Out" - Part II.

We had a few days of nice weather, so I moved back outside and put up the railing on the deck. There are code requirements to meet, but we wanted the railing to be as minimally obstructive to our view as possible. We think we succeeded.

Here's a pic looking at the house from where the horse paddock is:

This one shows an outside view looking across our pasture: 

 This is from the inside looking toward the barn:
You can see a bit of the finished ceiling in this one.

One by one, we're ticking off the things needed to get our final inspection done and to be able to move in (CO - Certificate of Occupancy). We're almost done setting up the kitchen to make it functional enough for CO. Laurie textured and painted it. We have the counter in and the sink should be hooked up in the next day or two. I will be building custom cabinets for the kitchen over the summer, but for now, we'll have a few cheap-o cabinets just to get by. The bathroom is well underway. I'm working on tile while Laurie is working on texturing and painting. We'll post more as each area is complete (enough for CO). 

It's starting to feel like we're coming into the home stretch. Another 4-5 weeks and we could be moving in! WooHoo! 

Monday, January 11, 2016

Where the Deer and the Antelope, uh..., Invade?

Life at the ranch isn't all about building a house. We continue to be amazed at the scenery and wildlife. We see a LOT of deer. Occasionally, we see a few elk. Only one time have we seen one lone antelope walking down, of all places, Antelope Lane :) . That is, until yesterday.

They must have been planning this huge invasion! Laurie noticed the horses running in the pasture. When she looked out the window she discovered what they were all excited about:
There must be over 50 antelope in this group! They are just outside the fenced portion of our pasture. At first the horses and antelope all stopped and just stared at each other. Then they all relaxed a bit.

Here, the horses made their way up closer to the fence and ran around a bit as the unconcerned antelope filed past:

A little later in the day we had some neighbors over for dinner. We told them about the antelope and showed them some pics. As if to "show off", the herd reappeared and treated the neighbors (and us) to another live viewing.

What a wonderful place to live! As always, we give thanks to our Father for these blessings.

Electrifying !

We got everything done that needed to be done in preparation for finishing up the electric. The electrician came out a week ago and finished up all the electric. So, now we have lights, hot water, live outlets everywhere, outside motion detector flood lights, etc.

Now we can work all night if we want to. Wait a minute! We're retired...we're not going to do that!

Laurie and I are continuing to stain and put up the ceiling tongue and groove boards. It's really looking nice. It is getting more and more to feel like a real house.

I'll start focusing on the bathroom next. Putting in the shower tile, bathroom floor, vanity, toilet, etc.