Off the Grid  Retirement at our remote log cabin in Colorado

Monday, March 23, 2015

Aerial View of Cabin

Posted by: Rick

Here is an aerial view of the cabin site, taken from Apple Maps. Google Maps and Google Earth have similar views.

You can see several features of the cabin and surrounding land. There is a small shed, about 8' x 8' just "below" the cabin. That is where we store the backup generator, tools and various supplies. We will likely build a larger storage shed to the left of it. You can also see the white 1000 gallon propane tank in the same area. The solar panels on the roof are just visible. When the wind turbine is recommissioned, it will be between the propane tank and the entry road below the cabin.

You can also see many downed trees to the left. That is west of the cabin--the direction that fire is likely to come from. The trees were all killed by pine beetles, and thus were a fire threat. They were cut down many years ago and most were hauled away. Those you can see here are subsequent blow-down. They are now cleaned up and stacked ready to turn into firewood. I'm guessing this photo is 2 to 3 years old. All the gray/brown trees are beetle kill, so you can see there is plenty of additional firewood coming!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Shedding

Posted by: Lynne

Shedding!? No, not the dogs or cat, but shedding stuff. Going through a household of things that haven't been used or looked at since we moved here nine years ago is not an easy task. Sorting, packing, throwing things away, etc. It's not much fun but it has to be done. I must admit that bits of it are rewarding:

1) I have a big box full of Berner things that I am donating to various Bernese Mountain Dog fundraisers. On April 2 I will meet with someone coming from Maine and heading down to Pat Long's area. We are meeting not far from my house. I like the thought that I've got some really good things in there that should raise good money for them.

2) I sorted through my stash of knitting yarn and found a bunch that has never been used, the skeins never touched, that I don't want anymore. I called my local knitting store and they said to contact an assisted living or elder care home. So I contacted the Chelsea here in town (a lovely place!) and they were thrilled to accept the donation, so I dropped it off yesterday. Now I can imagine my yarn helping someone with arthritic hands through knitting therapy.

3) Today a took a marionette that I bought in Germany some 30-odd years ago when we lived there to our town library. She is wooden and dressed in a striped housedress and white eyelet apon. She has a mobcap on her head. I've always thought the expression on her face was rather creepy to tell you the truth. She's just been sitting in a box since before we moved to New Jersey. I figured that they might like to have it for their story hour. Oh my goodness! The librarian who presides over the children's part of the library was totally enamored of my little hausfrau. She was so excited — she just kept hugging her and telling me all the things she would be great for during story hour, one of which I thought was perfect: Mother Goose!  She was truly grateful and seemed to hardly believe her good luck. I felt so good about her having a good home where she can be useful. (I just hope the kids don't find her as scary as I did.)

All these things that I donated will go on to give their own particular piece of joy to someone. And for that I am so glad.

Shedding can be a good thing!

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Saturday Cabin Throwback Photo

Posted by: Lynne

Alex, the snuggle bunny. How we miss him!

Saturday, March 07, 2015

Saturday Cabin Throwback Photo

Posted by: Lynne

Mom and me cookin' in the kitchen. I think we were making lasagna.

Photo taken in 2004

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

You’re going to WHAT?

Posted by: Lynne

That's the kind of reaction I get when I tell people we are retiring to our cabin in Colorado. We also get lots of questions. What follows are a few examples.

Q: Where is your nearest neighbor?  A: Over the hill.

Q: Where do you get your mail?  A: We're not quite sure but we think down at the Wooden Shoe in Wyoming. We have to figure out how to do it because we live in Colorado, yet get our mail in Wyoming.

Q: Do you have electricity? A: Yes, but provided by the wind and the sun, not by any company. We do have a gas-powered backup generator. We have a propane tank for heat, range & fridge.

Q: What about phones? A: Our cell phones don't work very well up there. There is always chat on the computer! Either that or go outside and stand in a certain spot in the yard.

Q: Do you cook on the wood stove? A: Well, we can but we prefer to use our propane gas range.

Q: Do you have all-year access? A: Not really. We could be snowed in for weeks at times. It just depends on the snowfall and the wind.

Q: What happens in case of emergency?  A: In good weather the hospital in Laramie is only 45 minutes away. For winter if could be iffy. We can always sign up for a yearly contract for emergency helicopter service.

It's at this point where people's eyes are starting to glaze over ... I can tell they are losing interest.

One of our friends (whose mother is in a nursing home) asked if someone was available to come in if we needed home health care. Our answer was that if you were to the point where you needed in-home care you don't live up there anymore.

Q: Where is the nearest restaurant? Uhm, that would be Wood's Landing. It's a great place. Be sure and try the bull fries, they are actually quite good. Also feed the jukebox money and play yourself some Ian Tyson. Maybe dance a little two-step?

Q: Where is the nearest mall that has a Nordstrom's? (that question coming from neighbor Kim).  A: Hmm...not sure. Cherry Creek in Denver?

And the biggest and most frequently asked question: WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO???

Hike.

Fish.

Hopefully go horseback riding with our neighbor.

Watch the clouds.

Take the T@B and travel around. See new sights.

Take the summer one year and drive to Alaska.

Rick wants to learn how to play the guitar.

I'll continue to knit.

Read.

Look out the window.

Watch the wildlife.

Cut wood/stack wood.

Live life and enjoy every minute of it.

Any other questions?

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