Sunday, September 27, 2009

Trying to make progress

The cabin plans arrived. The blueprints actually call them "cottage" plans. Simple dwelling, approximately 800 square feet on the ground floor with a large loft, great room, and lots of openness. The design is a structurally sound shell and then you put windows, walls, and rooms where you desire. My pencil played with a lot with layouts over the weekend. I think we have one that we both like.

The lot is 480 feet deep, so I had this wild idea about a zip line for the grandkids. Mom recalled that the RV park where our family stayed in Montana years ago had one, and it was a blast. I bet all the girls remember. My imagination can see the older grandkids on it already. Ok, I'm dreaming.

Gustavus is the gateway to Glacier Bay National Park. While googling for ferry schedule in 2010 I chanced upon the following link for a guide service in Gustavus. The pictures are all of the vicinity. Gustavus actually has a beach, rare in Alaska, so the rocky shore scenes are a few miles away. There are more pix of Whales or People in the overhead menu if you are interested.
Gustavus and Glacier bay Pix
Here is a "reflective" sample.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

We are in Escrow

We are finally in escrow on the Alaska property. I've started accumulating a few things we will need to build. Nothing too much, just stuff I can find at a dutch price. Escrow should close around Nov 1 if all goes according to plan. Again, there are ways it could fall out. But at this point I am cautiously optimistic.

Thank you for your concern here and in emails about whether I will be able to follow through building a cabin. Truth is I don't know. Without help it will be rough indeed. I can cut down trees and clear land given time, but without help I doubt I can lift a 12 foot wall by myself. I have expressed to Mom that the folks who seemed interested could backtrack when decision time arrives. I ordered a set of plans off the internet this morning for a simple 1½ story cabin.

On the foot front I find one shoe is most comfortable so I have taken to wearing it all day. Usually I take shoes off when I come in the house, but until this is healed I have Mom's permission to wear shoes in our domicile.

Monday, September 21, 2009

If it ain't broke don't fix it.

About three weeks ago I had to bail from a slipping ladder. I was approximately eight feet above the ground. My right foot and hip absorbed most of the landing and the foot has been bothering me but I didn't go to the doc because I had too much to do. After three weeks of minor pain and a foot that didn't seem to be getting better I decided to go get checked out. First the Urgent Care waiting room, then had to hobble over to the hospital for xray, then back to Urgent Care and more waiting. Four hours in all. My assumption was right. They showed me the fracture. It's my driving foot so they are not going to cast it and see how it heals. I'll take it easy for a few weeks. It hurts a bit more after they tried to make me bend it against resistance, and probed around to see where it was most sensitive. But nothing I can't stand.
Mom said we are going to have to pray we don't get sick. There were what seemed to be some pretty contagious people in the waiting room, and we sat there for hours.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Thundering Herd

We spent four days in Portland getting to hold and pray over baby Abram. The three other kids were highly mobile and total individuals (especially Brynne) and we have many memories. It was suggested I pass along a few of the incidents, especially those with Jonah. I was goofing with him prior to dinner and he got in trouble and sent to his room. After a while I went up and offered to take his place in a substitutionary justice since I was partly responsible. To that Jonah said he had done wrong and deserved the punishment and would not let me substitute. I thought, how mature for an eight year old.
We stayed in the basement, and each morning we awoke to what I call the thundering herd; the sound of the kids tromping across the floor above us.
I was especially touched the last evening. I said goodbye to each of the kids in turn. When I got to Jonah he told me thank you, especially for tussling with him. He said he was trying not to cry because we were leaving. And somewhere in the mix he uttered, "I want to grow a moustache." He made this grandfather's day. You go for it Jonah!

Change of Venue?

I have enjoyed Alaska since the first extended visit years ago. Mom liked Alaska too, though she does not have as much pioneering gene. This summer we looked for property to build a small cabin which we can enjoy with family and friends during summer. While in Portland introducing ourselves to Abram I negotiationed for a piece of property. The dialogues were difficult. Folks can be disingenuous. I threatened to back out several times. On the way home we received a phone call from the realtor that the offer had been signed by the seller. From here we go into escrow. If escrow doesn't fall out we should own the property in early November. Tentative plans are to try to clear some trees off the land and build a weather-resistant structure next summer, and hopefully make it rough livable. Then do the finishing in 2010-11. I tell mom the first thing we will have to do is build an outhouse. OK, it's a joke. The property should support a septic system, and has electric and telephone to the edge now. The moose and bear habitat come with the property. ;-)

Thursday, September 3, 2009


For the past week I have been painting the exterior of the store. What a gigantic job. One forgets how big that building is until a project like this brings on reality. We estimated three days to complete. After six days of hot work (had 105-111˚ every day) by two of us I'm estimating the project about 75% done. I'm beat! Tomorrow, Friday, we drive north to meet Abram for the first time. Cooler weather will be welcome!