All posts by Joyce

Family help!!!

The Williams Family arrived Sunday night.

After a breakfast of my biscuits and gravy with scrambled eggs we all got to work.

Jamie and Mikaila could be found breaking tile and creating art in the wall.

Martin and Marcus were busy finishing up the ship lap on the bathroom wall.

Piece by piece the ship lap grew closer to the ceiling.

Till I cut the last piece and the wall was complete.

This cute little supervisor was exhausted from making sure everyone stayed busy. And chasing poor Squirt. Kitty could be found hiding high up.

This morning Jamie was back at it. It’s like an unfinished puzzle for her.

Piece by piece.

Our wall finishing are not quick to finish projects.

The rest of us started the work in preparing the bottles for the bottle wall part of the shower.

First bottle cut!!!!!!!

Rinsed by Marcus.

Then dried by Mikaila.

Test fit!

It takes two bottle butts to make one for the wall.

Our family and neighbors have been saving bottles for us for this project.

Big or small, round or square we take ’em all.

Now this is family love. Come to visit and they work for food.

Mikaila finally was able to catch Squirt for a brief moment till the little dogs scared her away again.

Mikaila wanted stickers for her water bottle. So we taught her the process of vinyl cutting.

Papa cut it, I weeded it and Mikaila learned to place it and stick it.

After the children headed back to the Arizona valley, we decided to placed the bottles we made.

A mix of mortar and one hot chick.

This is what you get.

Martin quickly did an estimate of how many bottles we need and his guess is 1,200. That means we need we need 2,400 bottles to cut. So drink up friends and family!!!!

Thank you to Williams’ for all their help.

Till next time…..



I must say today was the most fun we’ve had showering in the snow. It’s 32 degrees outside and the snow was coming down in a wet heavy snow. We stomped up the hill in the slush. You could feel the snowflakes hit you in the face.

We snuggled under the shelter of the corrugated tin of the shower structure watching the water rain down out of the shower head. The steam appeared, it was ready. Stepping out of my boots the floor was soooooo cold. As you step into the hot water, awe it feels so good. And as you are going through the showering process any body part that was not in the stream of the hot water was pelleted with the very large wet cold snowflakes. It was the most interesting sensation. Hot and shocking cold little touches at the same time.

Now we sit warm and cozy next to the fireplace.

Jamie, Marcus and Mikaila are on their way up here. Drive safely kids and Dad will be ready to rescue you if needed.

Till next time…..


Yesterday was so much fun…..

Since we had a ball building a barn door we decided to do it again!

This was a make it work day. We used whatever wood we had. Straight or not.

That’s Martin hammering away and me my toe is the perfect holder.

Time to hang the door. Love it!

Our pipe handle almost completes the look.

Martin designed and cut out a transfer with our vinyl cutter.

The vinyl sticks so well I’m able to paint the letters.

Then with a gentle touch and a swift hand, rip it off like a bandaid…….ta-da!!!!

Hubby said, “Now I know where to get food!” Maybe we should put one on the bathroom too!

Till next time…….


PooPoo Privacy….

We took the time to build our first barn door.

Will it fit?

Of course it will. Now it’s time to stain.

And the final adjustments.

Pipe handle complete. With the family coming up during spring break they can poop in peace!

Martin started grouting the shower tile.

These are the last three pieces of ship lap that are being stained.

During the build we would buy 30-60 pieces at a time for a total of over 325 pieces.

This table as you can see will always tell the staining story. Colonial Maple, red mahogany, black cherry, provincial, classic grey, weathered grey, ebony and Jacobean. Leftover cans of stain will not go to waist as I have many ideas in my head just waiting to come to life.

I’m sure Martin will be happy to help me with my crazy brain stuff.

Till next time……..


Fun day!

Today we had a fun day planned. Riding in the hills with friends.

We started with breakfast at our house. Biscuits and gravy! Homemade hash browns! Bacon! Heart attack on a plate!

With our belly’s full we headed to the hills. We saw wild turkeys. As we traveled on the dirt roads, almost to our destination, John yells and stops! Shit! A quad fell off the trailer

Broken and bruised the poor quad was turned onto its wheels.

It took the boys and their muscles to get the quad back safely on the trailer.

Off we go! Trail 11 up to the Mangas look out.

Break time!

The higher we went the prettier it got.

The south side of the mountain brought us lots of snow.

The south side brought us drier roads.

The tour guide double checked his navigation skills.

We couldn’t have picked a better day.

After a ride we stopped for lunch.

As we ate I saw the most handsome man.

And as we rode I found the most interesting tree.

Alligator bark juniper. Coolest thing ever.

The terrain changed as we went up, down and around the mountains.

Our partners in crime. Neighbors up the hill! John and Victoria

And our neighbors up the road. Frank and Lizanne.

As we traveled I could see the beautiful landscape in the fall with all the fall colors. I see another trip in the future.

We made it to the look out only to find the road to it closed.

The trip was worth every minute.

Back to the start and the toys loaded, I found evidence hiding.

The three musketeers!

And their beautiful winches! That is an inside joke.

This was just some of the old buildings in our travels.

Came home tired and dusty. Nice hot outdoor shower felt so good. Good day + good friends = great day!

Till next time……


Snow day!!!!!

This morning we woke up expecting to see snow on the ground but the sun was shining. As we ate breakfast we watched the clouds roll in and BAM! It started to snow.

More crates arrived so it was a perfect staining day.

That makes 52 wooden crates martin and I stained for my sewing studio.

After a morning of staining, Martin ventured out to clean the snow off the solar panels and I found icicles.

On the panels!

On Martin’s clean truck!

Hanging tight to the gator!

On the tractor!

Up high the Dish displays its masterpiece.

Needs an icicle for your drink? Have a seat and break one off!

On the picnic table I found one for everyone!

The children were busy doing nothing.

The fireplace is going strong today. So now I think it is a perfect day to make a banana bread.

Till next time…….


Snow Day!!!!

This morning we woke up to another 2-1/2″ of snow.

So what do ya do? Make a big breakfast. Homemade hash browns, leftover sausage gravy topped with a fried egg.

Heart attack on a plate. Yummy!

We went outside to clean off the solar panels.

Even though there is little sun we still get power with cleaned off panels.

The children went outside to play.

The roof has a nice layer of snow which equals more water.

This is our high tech gauge. The black mark is the full mark. So we have one more board to go before we will have to dump water.

We walked up the hill to uncover the hose to the outdoor shower. If the sun comes out enough today we can shower. If not we wait till tomorrow.

With a high of 36 degrees our chances do not look good.

After living in the heat of Arizona for many years we are enjoying the colder weather. In Arizona you worked around the heat and the same thing but total opposite. We wanted to work on the shower but cutting tile outside in this weather would be crazy. So we wait for another day. Today we will continue working in my storage area.

Till next time……..brrrrrr


Happy Snow Days…..

Winter is upon us.

We just love going for a walk when it is snowing. This is the deck on the knoll.

Martin made his first snowman.

Just the perfect snow.

Kansas is like, “Really dad, we have a trail to hit.”

It just never gets old.

Kitty was interested but said, “Not today.”

After getting home from our quick trip to California, Martin brought home the bug. So while I was finishing my work he rested.

Yes he rested by building his desk.

Just a few hours of work a day.


Painting! Which he does not like to do.


This is such a big step. No computer on his desk. No printer on his desk. Lots of room for him to do whatever he wants on his desk.

With another snow fall it was a perfect time to finally burn our huge burn pile. 2×4’s, 4×4’s, plywood, 6×6’s and all the other scraps from the build.

It burned all afternoon and by morning is was all gone.

With the nice wet snowy weather driving to the Post Office leaves your truck a new color!

3″ of snow equals water in the tanks.

And 3″ of snow equaled a leak in the house. A whole pot of water came in. One of our penetrations for our wood stove decided to leak. Luckily we did not put insulation or the ceiling up so as soon as it dried out on the roof Martin went up and added more screws and goop! Fixed!

Our girl loves the snow. She says, “The more snow the more fun!”

I have completed my work for the season so now I have some time off.

With Martin not feeling well he still mustarded up a little energy to start finishing up my storage area. It needed insulation, wiring for the light and tin for the ceiling. This project will be finished another day.

I was able to take the time to unpack some boxes today.

I waited for 8 months to do this. Step by step!

Hopefully tomorrow my hubby feels a little better.

Till next time…..


Such a sad weekend…..

Martin and I had a classmate from high school pass away. He battled cancer for 35 years.

Some of our classmates and spouses met for dinner and reflection at Tina’s Hangertown.

Monday was the celebration of life and Jeff VonEsson was loved by many. He will be truly missed.

On the way home we stopped to walk Kansas.

And for some drone flying.

Martin will be posting his films on his Facebook page Pie Town Aerial. Gotta check it out.

He flew here at the bottom of the Salt River Canyon.

While he was busy I shot these.

Mother Nature truly is amazing. We appreciate her and then when we see how people treat her it really upsets us. At this stop trash everywhere. Cans, plastic bottles, paper wrappers and even a bed sheet. Breaks my heart.

Just few of pictures of some of the cool rock formations you see through the canyon.

We finally are home now. We are exhausted but so thankful we went to the service.

Till next time……