My First Night on the PROPERTY!!
The weeks seem to have themes as we move along. This week ended up with a theme just because an appointment drove it to that theme. Sundays are the only time I can get to the property to work. off to the property, as you probably know by now if you have been reading/watching along. I had an appointment on Monday morning at 9 AM with the electrician … one of the next important things to get going, that had been waiting til the well got installed. I just couldn’t see myself driving the hour and 45 min to the property and driving back Sunday only to turn around and head out early Monday morning again. Soooooooooo, staying at the property seemed like the right thing to do.
OK, so several things about that … #1 I have NEVER spent a night on the property. I have not even been on the property past dark as I always leave so I am not driving home in the dark. #2 There is obviously nothing on the property to stay in (or running water or electricity, etc.). #3 I have not been camping since I was in Girl Scouts back when I was a kid (yes, you heard that right … I was a Brownie then a Girl Scout who managed to get ALL her badges before I hit my teens and it was no longer cool … laugh on friends … it is true!) And as a girl scout we camped in cabins not tents (imagine that).
So, in my normal “I can figure this out” mode I did my due diligence and researched what I would need. I then read reviews and bought those things. So, there was the Napier Jeep bed tent & the Rightline Gear small truck bed mattress etc, etc. Some things I already had like a 5 gallon water container, solar lights, batteries, bug spray, etc etc etc. And before you knew it I had a full array of camping gear. Viola! Now does that mean I knew how to do or use any of this???? Nop. Winging it with YouTube University as my only resource for seeing others do it. You may Facepalm here with me.
So Sunday, I loaded up Athie, the Jeep, with all the gear and my normal tools and off Gracie, the brilliant Yorkie, and I went. Dumb as a doornail about it all, but figuring I’d get it all there and figure it out as I went and at worst, I’d ask Gracie advice and perhaps we’d end up just sleeping in the back seat of the Jeep..
When I arrived at the property I pulled in the gate and for the first time (there are a lot of firsts in this whole event LOL) I actually put the cable and lock on the double gate … to lock us in and the world out. I had locked the other single gate when the fence was installed but had been leaving this one open so contractors could get onto property. As I locked it I knew that at best it just would deter entrance but if anyone wanted to get in they would … still it somehow felt good to click that lock and stand back and say to myself, “Yep, that’s good, all safe now.”
Gracie and I drove around to the garden area and unload some bags of soil and stakes that I had brought to the property and checked on the Rainwater Collection Tank. I had tied the tank down a few weeks ago and forgot to check last week. Lo and behold, there it was … still standing. My tie down to the pallet foundation worked!! Yeahhhhh me!!!! I hopped out of the Jeep and ran over to check and see if any water had been collected through the small 3 inch mesh opening in the top.
As I unzipped the top there was WATER! Maybe 5 – 8 gallons of water (It is a 100 Gal Tank)!! Of course there was also some sand and leaves but that is only because it had collapsed several times & when I tied it up I hadn’t cleaned it again. I had wanted to know it would hold before doing all of that. Bottom line is IT WORKED! I zipped her back up and figured I would just let her keep working … great water to begin some of our gardening with, until we get other tanks and a full collection system with irrigation piping, etc. up and running.
Then I drove around the rest of the property … I am still getting a thrill that I can drive ON the property. I checkout out the other windy path to the single gate and back over to the “home” site. I decided where I wanted to set up the tent and parked the Jeep. I needed to clear the area a little so I whipped out the brush cutter and hand cleared a wide area for us to be in. I also unloaded several things that I brought to the property to leave there permanently like a fire pit ring and grill grate for it, several older 5 gallon water containers, etc. and placed those with the Gorilla cart and wheels and covered them all with a tarp.
Now it was time to figure out this tent thing. Everyone that I had seen assemble it on YouTube made it seem pretty easy. LOL … what I didn’t account for though was they were all big guys (like 2 – 3+ times my size) and they had probably set up multiple tents in their lives based on how they talked about it. That dawned on me as I pulled the tent out of the box and stared at the size of the tent, the Jeep truck bed and all the poles and things in front of me. I mumbled out loud to myself, “Just follow the directions!”. Funny thought for a woman who loves hacking her way through things in life!
So the instructions look pretty clear until I saw that there was a big note at the top above steps 1, 2 and 3 that said to do steps 1, 2 and 3 last?!? OK, so why did they have them as steps 1, 2 and 3 then … I did an eye roll and it went on from there. I decided I would let go of my resistance and just go with it. So I kept going, expanding poles, inserting poles, adjusting and things collapsing and then adjusting again. So fast forward, several hours later, and it looked amazingly like a tent in the bed of the truck!!
Yep, I said several hours later … OMG, I had to just keep letting go of my impatience with the tent and myself over and over and over. But I did and eventually it looked like it was suppose to. It was beginning to get dark so I pulled out the generator and blew up the mattress and put sheets on it and added my little cover and Gracie’s pink blanket and we were set! I placed several solar powered lights that I had charged around the area and made sure I had everything else I needed both inside and outside the tent. Check!
The only thing I had forgotten to do as I was setting it up was zip up the mesh windows and front … so it was filed with happy little flying creatures buzzing about everywhere. I turned on my little Thermacell buggie repellent dispenser and it did it’s things and eventually they mostly left. Gracie was settled in and very happy in the tent. I was, frankly, fighting off the assortment of brain patterns firing off about safety, etc. But, here we were … my first night on the property. I eventually calmed down and was able to hear the sounds of the property … it was so quiet except for the array of nighttime chirpers and buzzers busily chirping and buzzing. Sleep was on and off all night but I did doze off again each time I woke up.
I awoke at 6:30 (not a time I wake up often LOL) and realized we had made it through the night! The sunlight was peeking over the horizon and here I was. Waking up on the property for the first time … OMG!!! Gracie and I got up and out and took a walk as the birds chirped and the sun began to rise. It was so magical and beautiful. A world all on it’s own. I kept getting the rush of knowing how perfect it was here and how blessed I am!
Finally, I met with the electrician who came to inspect the property so he could give me an estimate and get electricity hooked up on the property. That was the point in being there early on Monday morning. We met, we talked and he made suggestions … and … now it is back to getting the electric company to get an engineer out to the property to put an electric pole on the property. Next game … of course the electric company originally told me the opposite … that I needed the electrician to put in a permit, which he can’t actually do until the electric company does their work. So next game sounds like a new circle and I am sure it will get worked out just like everything else ….. O-V-E-R T-I-M-E. Facepalm again and back to the Universe making sure I deepen my lesson in patience 🙂
As usual, I have posted videos of this whole adventure on the Freedom Acres YouTube Channel. This week there are videos of all the firsts that happened: the tent build, waking up in the tent and our first early morning walk on the property. Feel free to check them out by clicking HERE. Also, feel free to subscribe and you can get notified when new videos go up! 🙂
This upcoming week things keep moving. Tuesday AM the septic tank gets installed, the guy doing the architectural drawings will be done, which means that the overall permit gets going, the cement guy can come lay foundations for the shipping container home and the shipping contain for storage on the property and I will figure out the electrical stuff. Please do keep sending good MoJo to Freedom Acres and Gracie and I. It is so much appreciated!!! Til next week!!