Friday, December 21, 2012

December Do Over

Whoa, December has been a whirlwind! We pretty much missed out on the first 2 weeks off the month. My Daughter became pretty sick with Pneumonia. We made an emergency trip to the ER on December 5th, and then both spent a week on the couch, as I came down with the Flu as well! If it werent for my husband I don't know what we would have done....

He ALSO managed to get the Hot water hooked up to the Cookstove. A couple more days of hard work, and a couple more dollars in supplies, and he had it up and running around the 10th of December!

It went off without a hitch, and worked PERFECT for the first 2 days, UNTIL a pipe burst in the Bathroom.... still sick and lethargic, I woke around 9 am on the 12th,, to a pipe in the front bathroom, gushing water.. Imagine a hose on high (without no spray nozzle),, yeah, it was insane.. I am so happy I heard it, as our bedroom is a ways away ... It must have only been going on for a couple minutes, enought to empty about 20 gallons of water in our bathroom, hallway, and onto a bit of our carpet in the bedroom.  Could December really get any worse??
Robb came home fixed the pipe, and insisted it had nothing to do with the hot water system we just hooked up. Now, he is a Maintenance Man, and a damn good one, so I took his word, let him fix the pipe, and forgot about it.. Until...................
I woke up at about Midnight the following night.. To the sound of what sounded like a waterfall in our laundry room.. ANOTHER BURST PIPE!?!?!?!?!?!  Robb jumped out of bed, and proceeded to throw around the F*** word  a couple times,, turned the water off,, and proceeded to vaccum up the water in the hallway, put towels and fans on the carpet.. I lay in bed, completely annoyed (haha) and frustrated.. and figured midnight was not the best time to have a conversation about why another pipe coincidentally burst in the Laundry room....

The next morning, while googling whatever I could think of, to see if I could help figure out why our pipes keep bursting,,,Robb called me from work, to tell me we needed and Expansion Tank..
When we hooked up the cooktove to the hotwater tanke, we also added some check valves, these prevent the hot water from backingup into the cold water line, which is great and a good safety measure, But because of the size of the tank ( we have a 40 gallon tank,, pretty small) the hot water was building up pressure and that pressure needed somewhere to go,, so it chose any which way it could when the pressure built up! The expansion tank has resolved the problem.. But not before creating YET another mess.. RObb had to tear off the wall in the laundry room,,, clean up the water mess,,, replumb the pipes in copper ( we had some pretty cheap pipe in there) and then hook up the expansion tank.

I must say, I didnt think any of this Off the Grid stuff would be perfect... and when the Hot water system worked perfect at first,, I had my doubts..hahaahaha..
We arent quitters though and know there will be more challenges along the way.,,and since the expansion tank, the hot water system works AMAZING!! Start a fire, watch the temp, and you have PLENTY of hot water do live just as we did before.
I will admit if I am gone all day,, I do turn the hot water off,,, as I am still suffering from some broken pipe PTSD..... not quite over that yet,,lol

Since then, My Little Miss Norah has gone to her last check up and is Pneumonia Free! I am better! We have a totally awesome HOt water system, and I am finally working on Holiday deocorating,  baking and crafts....

I guess a December Do over wont be necessary after all....:)
Happy Holiday from The Cool Homestead!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012


Its been a busy couple of weeks here ... My dad came down for a visit last week :) We ate more than we should have, he got to spend time with his grand-daughter, and ( its never fails when son in law and dad get together) we accomplished a project we have been wanting to get done for a while now.
This is how it usually happens ;)
Dad and Husband have a  beer.... Dad and Husband get Bored... Dad and husband start an unannounced project,,hehehee..

I was in the kitchen Baking a pie and canning potatoes when giant branches started hitting the back porch... I ran outside to see what was up. Yep, thats my husband up in the tree, cutting down limbs with a chainsaw ...

They were getting Ready to drop our maple.. This is a beautiful tree, but there were 2 problems: It was blocking the sun for our Solar Batch Collector that will be used to heat our water in the summer, and it was dying at the top.
I will miss the Buzzzzzz sound we heard  every February from the Honeybees collecting pollen. But it had to come down :/

Robb cut and dad pulled with the rope. He told me I might have to help pull, but I ran inside and made myself scarce ..........

I did come outside quietly,  and watch once Robb started sawing, it was scary and kind of exciting... Robb has never really cut down a tree before, let alone one this tall, but my dad talked him through it,, and they dropped it like pro's

 so there ya have it :)  The hot water batch collector will be hooked up very soon. we are currently working on hooking up the cookstove for our hot water in the winter so need to finish that up first.

 quite a bit of wood to heat the homestead too..

Until next time :)
The cools