I just have a couple more of the old posts to bring you. I sure have enjoyed reminiscing. The day our driveway got improved about a year ago, I was nearly delirious with excitement. This post  is long and filled with lots of pictures of the process of getting our property ready to live on. Oh, those were good times!

March 29, 2014

Instant Driveway: Just add money, time, a skilled operator (who just happens to be your stepdad :-), 100 tons of gravel, and some heavy equipment, and voila! A driveway in 6 hours!

At the beginning of the day on March 28, 2014 our driveway looked like this:

And this is AFTER the grader ran over it once or twice!

By the end of the day it had been transformed to this:

Smooth as buttah!

These pictures were taken in roughly the same place (looking opposite directions), only about 6 hours apart. We started out the day with a nearly 4wd road and ended with a very smooth driveway.

Now for some more details and pictures (because we all know I love the details and pictures:-) of the drive-way in process…

But first, here’s some pictures from the past couple of weekends that we’ve spent out there.

Two weeks ago, we met my mom and stepdad up at the property to walk around and dream and plan and see what all we needed to do. Pops (my stepdad) is a newly retired Operating Engineer – which means he ran heavy construction equipment such as dozers, graders, and back hoes his whole career. So, we knew he’d be able to help us decide what our next step should be. It also helps that he and Mom live only about 5 minutes from the property. He’s the one who suggested a blade (grader) rather than a backhoe to do the work and asphalt grindings rather than regular gravel to lay down.

Playing around with a tape measure to get an idea of possible house dimensions (no we don’t have a set floor plan yet.)
Lunch time!
Lunch time!
Lunch time!
Wild onions that are so prolific up there.
Nap time!
Digging out the clogged culvert – My nephew telling Hubs how it should be done 😉 (and yes, my husband is in a kilt)
Digging out the clogged culvert – proof that my nephew actually did some work!
Princess Girl in her “sandbox”
Digging in the “sandbox”
Unclogging the culvert. Yes, my Hubby’s in a kilt and my nephew’s in just socks while he works. They are weird like that. :-/
I think we overworked him 😉

We also took some time while we were up there to enjoy the beauty around us and do a bit of exploring.

 “Beauty in the Desert” 

This little fairy glen is just off our property, but oh, so pretty..

 The following week (one week ago) we went back up to do a “bit” of work that turned into an all day project.

Flower Girl helping drive on the way up – it didn’t last long because as soon as we hit the rough drive, Joe needed her out of the way.
Dropping off some old windows we will eventually use in a greenhouse type structure
Obsidian REALLY wanted that stick (*ahem* – log)! (Edited 2-7-2015 – awe, Sid, I miss him. Yes, we have Scooter now, here in Oregon, but I miss our big goof-ball. Eventually, when we are back in Nevada, we plan to get him back from some friends who have very graciously been looking after him for us.)
It’s nearly as big as he is!
Silly nephew
Finally on to the project that we went up there for and which ended up lasting ALL DAY LONG. How were we to know that the nails we were going to pull were a freaking SIX INCHES long!?!?  (These huge pallets have been sitting there for years now. We plan to pull them apart, get them up to the house pad, and use them for decking around the trailer, etc. And no, the barn in the background is not on our property.)
Princess Girl and her friend did some nail pulling, too
Look at the size of that nail!
Yep, I got in the action, too.
Flower Girl wanted to help
Flower Girl and Daddy taking a break in the shade.
The girls playing in the dirt.
Getting closer to the end.
Ummmmm…yeeaaaahh…THAT’s why you should use the right tool for the job. A light duty hammer is not the tool for demolition!
Only a couple more boards to go. Getting close to quittin’ time.
Hey, lookit that, it still works as a hammer!

I really need to take a picture of the pile of nails. We calculated that it was over 600 of those suckers! I’m gonna save a few of the best ones to use as a decoration of some sort in the new house. Oh, and did you notice there’s a whole other pallet for us to do the same thing with???

See the other pallet next to the one the boys are sitting on? It is actually bigger than the one we worked on, and sitting upside down. Oh, yeah, that’s gonna be fun!

Ok, so we are finally up to yesterday’s work. Yay! It was so exciting!

The blade was delivered at about 7:15am
Pops going up and down the drive with the blade smoothing it out. There were a LOT of big boulders in this section.
See, big boulders. Every time he’d pass over this 200yard section, more and more boulders would surface. Eventually good enough had to be good enough.
The grader on our drive with the valley in the background
Finally, the first load of asphalt grindings getting laid!
I went running and jumping around on the first pour!
Just a little excited, ya think?
Pops smoothing out the first load of grindings.
The first load of grindings getting smoothed out.
My brother got to come up for a few minutes and run the blade. He is training to be an operating engineer like his dad and jumped at the chance to get in there!
Once the drive itself was basically done, Pops then took some time to grade the house pad.
The last load getting dumped.
We finally get to drive on our new driveway! This was about 2:00pm
On the very clean housepad. The Suburban is parked on the asphalt grindings which is where our trailer is going to be parked while we’re building the house.
Taking some time to rest and enjoy our view before heading back down the hill. It was a very good day!

So that’s it. We are a couple thousand dollars poorer, but infinitely richer after yesterday. Our housepad is accessible, which means we can start moving up the trailer and storage shed, etc. And eventually (hopefully soon) we’ll be moving there (as soon as this house sells). And then there’s going to be a big pause since the next step is building permits. And we have to have a floor plan and blueprints and all that fun stuff, which is going to take time and money. So, we’re going to have to save up some more money, and while were saving we’ll be finalizing plans. But we’re one step, or should I say, one drive closer to our dream!

This entry was posted in Castle Rock Homestead, est 2014 and tagged , , , , on by .

About Maridy

Hi, I'm Maridy. I have many interests in life. Right now, my husband and I and our two girls (ages 14 and 7), along with a couple of dogs currently live in a 33ft trailer while we build our house on our homestead property in Northern Nevada (Castle Rock Homestead). Follow us on that journey to building our high desert homestead from the ground up! I also have a passion for hiking and have a blog for that, too. (Journey in the Wilderness) Join me there as I explore the beautiful outdoor landscapes of Northwestern Nevada and Eastern California. And finally, I love historical costuming. Though I haven't been able to do much of that in recent years, I'm hoping that "once the house is built" I'll be able to get back into it more. See what all we've done with that on my Yesteryear Productions blog.

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