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Prefab Home Off Grid Construction Just About Ended Us This Weekend, Y'all.

I don't even know where to start.
It was supposed to be so... easy. We were almost done!
These were moments where... if it could have gone wrong in the prefab home, it did.

It's all right now.

Deep thanks to Pat Root of Root Electric, Justin Layne and friends and family of Layne Construction.
We are grateful.

What happened was that the crazy weather, logistics, and project deadlines on our own off grid prefab project did not fortuitously and  harmoniously meld to meet a certain deadline:
Have all plumbing and bathroom work done by Sunday at One P.M.

You throw ONE WRENCH in (hello, monsoon rain atypical of this region!) plus geographical logistics (hello, twenty minute commute each way to Farmville each time you realize, "Oh I got a wrong part or tool of XYZ size")... you suddenly find yourself... a DAY behind schedule.
A *critical* schedule.
A Guests-Arrive-At-One-In-The-Afternoon-On-Sunday Schedule.

And everything goes wrong, when it could have gone right.
The monsoon hit Friday.
Right outside of Farmville all traffic slowed and pulled over, hazards blinking, as rain pelted the highway... so we arrived late with three children, two dogs to the prefab's home site... turned to mud.

Our goals this weekend? (How hard can this be?)
Clean the house.
[How hard can this be? With three children, two dogs, all paws and toes caked with Virginia clay?]
When it DID stop raining, they turned into Mud Children.
With a little help from The-One-Day-This-Will-Be-A-Natural-Pool-But-Right-Now-It-Is-A-Ginormous-Mud-Puddle.

Mud Hole, a.k.a. Future Natural Pool. Child: "I'm an OTTER!"

Test the water to ensure it's potable.
[Oh. Wait. The cistern extension to the manhole is too short and now the extension warped and now there's MUDDY WATER IN THE CISTERN and we have to
1. pump out that precious rainwater then
2. clean the cistern (which involves dropping children down with sponges)
3. REFILL the cistern
4. by the time our guests arrive! ]
They cleaned, and cleaned, and cleaned, and cleaned...
now it's mid-day, Saturday. And the clock is ticking.

A grateful donation was made to our local firehouse.

Ok. It's mid-afternoon and I can sigh with relief: We have water.

Oh. Wait. Did we just nail through a water pipe?
We did.
Off we go to Farmville to replace that piece.
(Reminder: Each time you hear "went to Farmville" deduct 1+ hours of travel and errand time.)

Now it's Saturday night.
Then it's Sunday morning.
Then the guests arrived.
And we still weren't done.
Through my chagrin and deep mortification the M's remained gracious.
Our departure hour overran EIGHT HOURS.
Eight hours of assuring them this is all okay and we would be out of their hair any minute.
(It really should have taken a minute. But this was not that kind of day. And we wanted to make sure they had clean, potable, running water! And that the cistern wouldn't be muddied, ever, again!)

Then, as the first stars blinked on, we were done.
We apologized again, said our goodbyes, The M's cavalierly walked us outside to say good bye and...
No car.
Handsome Husband had made another run to the shed.

We admired the stars.

Finally, here he is!
With all of us expectantly watching his approach, at the last second, he whirls the car around to quickly back up...

over the dog.







I'm going to concentrate (hard) on the finer moments of this weekend, and hope the M's will
1. speak to us much less 2. come back again and again as friends.

I'm going to focus on the good moments.
Y'all recall the natural pool?
Without a liner, much less plants, that's now an Official Mud Swimmin' Hole.
Mud childrenz.

I'm going to focus on the good moments.
Like when, after explaining to The M's that People Do Stop By here, up rode The W's on their horses, who then bent down, scooped up Pipsqueak #2, and took off across the field.
I just looked at The M's and said, "See?"

I'm going to focus on the good moments.
 Dog #2 happily rolling in horse manure, only for us all to then encouragingly throw sticks into the Mud Pond: "Go get the stick, GOOD BOY, get the stick!" so he could at least rinse muddy water on himself for the ride home.

I'm going to focus on the good moments.
[One day we'll laugh about this... I think.]

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At 7/11/11, 12:45 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...


At 7/11/11, 10:50 PM , Blogger Passive Solar Prefab Homes said...

BTW- one thing I didn't make clear- dog is FINE, he had a little dirt on him but that was *IT* - I couldn't believe it because he went *rolling* under the carriage of the car thank *goodness* right in the middle of it, and we are all being so gentle, and appreciative that he is acting as if nothing happened... he's a twelve year old dog which is why I think he didn't hear the car... we are being much, much more protective of him now, as we realize he might not have heard the car approaching.


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