Thursday, September 12, 2019

Two Weeks in South Dakota....

I don’t know who was happier to return to our property; us or the dogs. They jumped out of the vehicle and ran around exploring all the nooks and cranny’s to see what has changed over the past few weeks.
The girls are happy to be home!
Next we had a decision to make. Do we pull the 5th wheel out of the garage for the two weeks we will be here? This would mean taking the camper off the truck, putting the 5th wheel plate in the truck, moving the 5th wheel out,  taking the 5th wheel plate back off  and putting the camper in the garage. Then doing the reverse in two weeks when it was time to leave as we are planning on taking the camper on our next adventure.

After thinking it through we decided to leave the 5th wheel in the garage and live in it while we were here. The 5th wheel seemed HUGE after being in the camper for so long.

No sunshine and dish TV but it will do for 2 weeks. 
After getting all settled in Barb set about doing a deep cleaning on the camper. Pulled everything out and spent two days cleaning. I in the meantime putzed in the house. We had one big project planned while we were here but not until Kevin and Cheryl arrived in a week or so.

Instead I worked on installing outlets and light switches. Every time I hook one up and flip the breaker it was like a mini victory when it worked. Forrest did a great wiring everything. I had to call him for a lifeline a couple times as I had no idea how to do 4 way switches and could not remember which switch to use as power for a couple of the lights. I am happy to report that all the lights and outlets worked just like they were supposed to!

We had lots of deliveries expected the first few days after our arrival. The first delivery was the shower/tub unit for the upstairs bathroom. When the delivery guy arrived and unloaded it from his truck he asked where I wanted it. I about said “In the garage is fine”. But I thought, what the heck and said “In the upstairs bathroom”. He did not seem to mind a bit and to the upstairs bathroom we went!
 The next delivery was more of an arrival. Dino and Lisa arrived for a visit! We had not seen them in quite a while and it was great to spend some time with them.
Two Lances sitting in the driveway! Dino and Lisa's is in the back
We did not do a lot of touristy activities but instead mostly hung out talked, laughed and did chores. Well, mostly they just watched me work. One day Dino and I were preparing to go somewhere and I jumped in the truck, started it up and it died. Just died, would not start not matter what we did. It seemed like it was not getting any fuel so the next day I decided to see if it was the fuel filter. After Dino watched me change the filter and prime it we were back up and running! Dodged that bullet, I hate truck problems!
Dino drinking his morning coffee watching me work on the truck

That leaking below the fuel filter was the culprit!
 Our next delivery was the metal for our roofing. I had been working with the metal company for over two months to make sure it was delivered on time and although they were a day late, it was nice to have it on the property awaiting Kevin and Cheryl’s arrival in a few days.
Unloading the roof steel
They had a really interesting three wheel forklift deliver the steel. He asked where I wanted them. I told him I wanted them in the garage but at 18' wide they would never fit through the doors. "No problem" he said as he pushed a couple of buttons and the wheels turned sideways.
With a push of a button, he was gong sideways!
It reminded me of a crab on the beach, going forward one second, sideways the next! He fit them into the garage with no problem at all!
We then went to Rapid City to pick up the (4) 8”x8”x18’ timbers we had ordered a couple of months ago. These are going to be accent timbers in our livingroom. I had a hard time finding a place to cut them. The first place could not cut 18’ers. The second place wanted $500 per timber. The third place said no problem but it might take a few months to source the right logs. They were a steal at just over $100 per timber!
These will eventually be finished and serve as accent timbers in the livingroom 
As exciting as all those deliveries are, the next one was the most exciting! Barb wanted a new toy and had ordered a 2019 Polaris Ranger 1000XP! Unbeknownst to Barb I had been whispering in her ear while she was sleeping…..“You want a new 2019 Ranger 1000 XP and a Vortex Razor HD 27 60x85 spotting scope”, …..“You want a new 2019 Ranger 1000 XP and a Vortex Razor HD 27 60x85 spotting scope” over and over again. Then one day she woke up are said “I think we should get a 2019 Ranger 1000 XP”. I said “And a Vortex Razor HD 27 60x85 spotting scope?” She said “No, just a Ranger, you would probably look at the sun with a spotting scope and burn your eye out”. Funny, that is the same thing Santa said to me at the mall last year before pushing me down the slide with his foot. Oh well, 1 out of 2 is not bad!
Lisa and Barb in the new Ranger
So with the arrival of the new Ranger the 4 of us were off for our inaugural adventure! We set off down the driveway and immediately knew something was not right. It would not power up over 15 miles an hour….. No matter what we tried it just had no power. Frustrating! So we turned around headed back to the house and Barb called up the dealer ready to give them an earful. If you have never experienced the “Wrath of Barb” consider yourself lucky.  Well, she was going to give it to our salesman with both barrels. Dino, Lisa and I hid around the corner as she made the phone call. We listened intently but did not hear any expected cussing usually associated with the “Wrath of Barb”. She returned a few minutes later and said “It won’t go over 15mph unless you have your seatbelt on”……. Seatbelts fastened, we were off again!
Dino and Lisa left on a Saturday and two days later my sister Carol arrived for a 5 day visit! We had a great time catching up. She read and chatted while we worked on more house chores. We got out on a few adventures as well, including another 4 wheeler ride and a tour around Custer State Park where we saw lots of buffalo and the donkeys!
That was a big herd!

These two were doing a little sparring
The herd bull was making lots of noise
"Hey lady, got any food in there?"
Ready for our ride!

These two refused to get out of the way and we ended up going around them

How old do you think these buildings are?
Coincidently, Carol’s daughter Stephanie had planned a vacation with her 5 kids to the Black Hills this same week. Leaving her husband at home Steph thought it would be fun to load up the van, two tents and 5 kids and hit the road for 3 weeks. Since they are home schooled it more like a long fieldtrip! I bet the campers at Custer State Park thought they were safe camping after Labor Day with all the kids back in school when a van pulls up and 5 kids ranging from 6 to 17 piled out and start setting up tents!
Stephanie and her 5 kids
They came over one afternoon for a visit. Barb and I had not seen Steph for about 6 years so it was like meeting all the kids over again.  After a week here they are headed to Yellowstone to terrorize the campers there! Actually, they are very well behaved and cute kids.  

Carol left early Saturday morning and we had just a few hours to get ready for Kevin and Cheryl's arrival. Sunday morning Kevin and Cheryl were over bright and early ready to tackle the roof. We had quite the system going. 

Barb and Cheryl were on the ground and stood up the 18' panels to Kevin who was standing in the skidsteer basket 16 feet in the air. 
Ready to work!

Cheryl and Barb standing the 18' panels on end
Kevin pulling the sheet up to the roof
Kevin would then pass the sheets one end of the sheet off to me, we would put them in place and start screwing them down. 
Getting them screwed down
8 hours later we were tired and sore but we had all the panels up!

The next day we finished one gable end and installed the roof vent. That is enough for now....
All done!
Work done, we were ready for our next adventure. We spent Tuesday packing up the camper and enclosed trailer. But I had a surprise when I went to check my trail cameras one last time before we left.

Upon seeing that everything stopped and I went out hunting!
I did not see him that night. I hope he sticks around as he is on public land and we will not be back to see him for a while!

Wednesday morning we finished packing up and hit the road. We are headed west for a few weeks in Oregon where we will stay at Forrest's and where our daughter and family will be flying out to visit for a week!


  1. The roof looks great. Good job! Boy, do we know when to plan a visit. Lisa is jealous of Barb's Ranger.

    1. Glad you were able to visit, maybe You should start whispering in Lisa's ear about a new Ranger for you guys!

  2. That’s the second time Dino has watched you change out your fuel filter...remember watching you in Q. Congrats on the new 4 wheeler...nice ride! That buck is a real beauty and would look nice above your fireplace.
    Safe travels!

    1. We actually talked about that! At least that time he suggested I try priming it. This time he was a silent observer just drinking his coffee.

    2. Well if you would have worked on it later in the day I could have had a beer and watched.

  3. The house is shaping up. Nice that you have the roof on to waterproof it before this next winter. Nice new ride, you ranger. You certainly utilize that machine at home and on your travels. Good luck with shooting that deer without a new spotting scope. ha ha

    1. I fail to see your humor..... But the Ranger will be nice down south this winter.

  4. Another busy time! Congyon the roof, it looks great. I laughed when you said the Ranger wouldn’t go over 15mph. My brother did the same thing when he got his this year!

    1. Funny, we imagined the salesman hanging up the phone and the other salesmen who overheard him saying " Another seatbelt call huh?".

  5. Wow, the roof looks great! Love those old barns. Not as old as what we are seeing over here in the UK, but tons of stories in them, just the same.

    1. Ya, this barn maybe dated back to the late 1800's not a couple hundred years earlier like you are seeing.

  6. Great pictures of the park. Custer State park is one of our favorite places that we do not get to visit often enough.

    1. We never get tired of driving through the park there is so much to see there!

  7. Love the photo of Dakota and Daisy. I'm sure they enjoy being home with lots of places to roam. Great new toy for Barb. That will be really useful on your property. Glad you had a changing audience for your projects. Roof looks great!

    1. If you liked that post, you are going to love the next one!

  8. Nice to get those things taken care of and the roof finished , now to enjoy more of your travels.

    1. More than you know, it is so nice knowing that the roof is fully covered with winter coming. Now if we could just get the siding done......

  9. You two are the handiest couple I know (no pun Honestly, I have never seen anyone build themselves a house, it is great to watch! Enjoy your travels, and did you say down south for the maybe Florida? Hope to see you guys soon

    1. Thanks, we are having fun! Unfortunately we are headed to Arizona this winter, got to split it up a little.

  10. I was talking to a friend that is a Polaris dealer the other day. He had a SBS stolen off of his lot. He thought it was funny to watch the crack head on his camera system get frustrated because it would not go over 15 mph. They caught him. The roof looks awesome.

  11. Work, fun, work, fun repeat...what a life!
    The roof is looking good and man, the progress you have since I last read your blog. The wifi in Vancouver Is was not the best!