Lazer Creek Apiary

Come on baby, light my fire.

I know I’m showing my age with my recent music references, but it doesn’t bother me to let people know I’d be retiring next year if I still lived in England!

Bonfire at the future house site
Bonfire at the future house site

We were both so tired last night that we didn’t think to check the propane tanks.   Even the luke-warm air flowing from the vents didn’t clue me in, so we awoke this morning to a chilly camper.   Thank goodness for electric blankets and the electric radiator.    Hubby got up to make coffee and found we also had no water.  Thank goodness for the Brita pitcher in the refrigerator.    Now heat and water are both restored and we’re planning ahead for colder temperatures tonight.   I’m also keeping an eye on temperatures in the city as I may need to go back to make sure pipes don’t freeze at the house, although we have everything well insulated there.  Still, it’s a concern when we’re a few hours away.

Again, I have to concede that hubby was right when it came to spending money on a new furnace.  Not only is this one more efficient, it is quieter than the old one.  Never mind that hubby was correct in his assumption that the electric radiator would be insufficient once winter arrived and the old furnace stopped working Thanksgiving weekend.  That’s also the weekend someone hit my car at Starbucks and the washing machine had a violent-sounding death.   The new furnace is better; the new washing machine is bigger and better; and the repair shop detailed my car inside after repairing the front fender, so the interior of the car looks and smells better than it has in years!   Now that Maggie travels better, maybe it will stay that way — I can deal with clay, but I can do without dog barf in the cup holders!

Cold as it is this morning, both fires still had hot coals, so I was able to get the one by the future house site going again very quickly.   As we’ve been bush-hogging more land, we’ve been adding to the burn pile up here, and even though I doubt it’s raising the temperature much outside, it looks warmer out there.  Still, it’s a good morning to stay inside and get some more grading done.

Hubby is building shelves for the 20 foot shipping container.   We had to take everything out to slide the back shelf in yesterday.  Surprise, surprise — everything that was on the floor except for some wood and the old couch from the camper fits onto the new shelf, with space to spare.   We’ll be able to start moving some things from the house down here now.   Hubby is also going to build a base for the old scissor couch.   While I hope we never have to ride out a tornado in the shipping container, I’d rather have a semi-comfortable seat if we do need to!   That was the main reason for putting the container up here and it does give us peace of mind.   Apparently this part of Georgia had a record number of “weather events” in 2017.

Along with the less pleasant surprises of no heat and no water, we had the pleasant surprise of a visit from our real estate agent, Kent Morris, this morning.   He specializes in land sales and is the best real estate agent we’ve done business with in decades!  We hope we can find someone like him when we sell our house in the city.

2017 is drawing to a close, and it’s been another good year.  True, we haven’t won the lottery or found that elusive gold nugget on the land, but we have our health and we have this land.   Our health is better because we have this land.   Life is good and we’re looking forward to see what 2018 brings.

 

Farmers · Lazer Creek Apiary

Embarking on the project

Next week, we will take the second major step in our journey toward retirement in the countryside on what will become Magnolia Hill Farm — closing.  The first step was finding the right piece of land.   Our real estate agent, Kent, Morris, not only helped us, he has also restored our faith in real estate agents in general.  We highly recommend him to anyone looking for land around Pine Mountain.

Finding land is a lot like dating — you are unlikely to find the right one without first finding a lot of wrong ones.  Land that looked wonderful on Google Maps turned out to have been bulldozed and then left to whatever managed to grow on it afterward.  Land that was supposed to have mature hardwoods had a few scraggly scrub oaks and a couple of damaged trees that were probably beautiful before the invasion of the bulldozers.   Then we found “the one!”  We could not believe that the last piece of land we looked at on a long, discouraging day was a little slice of heaven.  Well, maybe not heaven — there are enough briars growing to make walking through some parts of it a painful process.  Then there are the current inhabitants — but more about that later.

The land is mainly planted pines, but as the land slopes sharply down to a creek on two sides of the property, beautiful old hardwood trees predominate in the areas close to the creek where neither our neighbor, a timber company, nor we can harvest trees. We love this harvesting restriction as we know those two property lines will always be as beautiful and peaceful as they are now.  The loading deck created when the pines were once thinned does not currently make the best first impression when driving onto the land, but we see such possibilities for that area.  One of our first chores will be to clean up the weeds, tires, and dumped mattresses to see what we really have there.   It’s a very small eyesore on a large piece of land, so we see its future rather than seeing its current state.  Our plans have so far included a little red school house to store garden equipment, a greenhouse, a shipping container for storage, a garden and an apiary.  And, of course, this entry to the rest of the land will be a home for all the magnolia seedlings I hope to have by spring so that the name of the farm makes sense!  I’m sure those plans will continue to evolve until after we at least have a place to sleep and bathe!

We think we’ve decided on our future home site, but we’ll make our final decision after closing and our meeting with the power company next week.  We’ll refine our ideas over Thanksgiving Break and then finalize them over Winter Break.   It’s going to be a lot of work, but it will be good exercise and great stress relief!

Oh yes — back to the current inhabitants.  We know we have deer, wild turkey, and some wild pigs.  We also encountered a huge rattlesnake on our last trip.  I am now looking for a pair of knee-high work boots to wear and I also pay far more attention to where I am going!   It’s going to be an adventure full of surprises.