I don’t have much in the way of an update today. It was a one-step-forward-two-steps-back kind of week.
We celebrated New Years Day with an afternoon just playing on our homestead. My youngest brother bought the family an outdoor ping-pong table for Christmas, and we set that up and some of us played a couple rounds. We also worked on putting together our new Samick Sage takedown recurve bow — and then we realized we had left a piece at home. I got to wear the new rancher hat my folks got me for my birthday a couple weeks ago, and I loved it as much as I thought I would. It was beautiful, sunny, springlike weather — and it felt so good just to be in the sunshine.
The next few days were spent in town. I made two large batched of marmalade, which took up a lot more time than I thought it would. I also reworked our floor plan for inside the tent. We are considering purchasing some bunk beds to give us a bit more space.
I also tried to find a good rain cap for our woodstove pipe. After doing more research, though, we realized that our double wall pipe may not be the best choice for our application. Several experienced canvas tent users have suggested single wall tent pipe, which would be lighter than what we have. We had hoped to install the stove yesterday, even if we had to wait on the pipe. But when we went to lay out the hearth board we ordered, we realized it was damaged inside the box, so we will be returning it to Menards. One thing I have to say about Menards — the quality of their products is hit-and-miss, but they seem to have a great returns policy.
Even though we didn’t get the woodstove installed, we had a productive day yesterday. We tried out our new bow, which was a lot of fun. Grace surprised herself at being a pretty good shot to begin with. We also learned how difficult it is to find arrows in tall grass — it felt like a winter Easter egg hunt!
We also finished moving down the hitching rails on one side of our tent. We plan to finish the other side tomorrow, even though it’s a Sunday, if the weather permits. We prefer keeping Sundays for rest and worship, but since it’s now the only day all of our menfolk are off work at the same time, we sometimes make exceptions for the afternoons.
Probably the most exciting part of yesterday was picking up our Starlink equipment from a local Dollar General (you can elect to have packages shipped there). While we don’t have guaranteed service until this summer, my brother signed us up to try to get some service while it is being rolled out. We are really excited, as we didn’t expect to have internet access aside from our phones out there so soon.
We had planned to go back out today, but it’s raining. So, today will be a supply day — returning things we won’t use, ordering things we need for the stove. We also still need to purchase what we need for our shower shed and porch railing. It’s going to be an exciting few weeks getting everything finished up. I can’t wait to be camping again!