1st Ripe Figs & Fabric

The first of this year's fig crop

The first of this year’s fig crop

I walked outside in a light drizzle today to check on the figs.  They are starting to ripen!  The tree with the early, smaller figs is loaded.  The other fig tree has larger, fat green figs that will ripen later.

I’m keeping this first picking to pig out on fresh.   They are superb!

I ordered fabric for the small bathroom last night.  Am going crazy trying to pick out paint colors.

But there’s a lot of prep work before I start since I need to replace part of the subfloor under the toilet, install a new toilet and lavatory and replace the flooring.  I’ve decided to keep the existing countertop.  It’s dated, but still sound and the color will work with my fabric.

I’m feeling a little under the weather, so might take a while to actually get busy on the project.  But the planning is always the toughest part for me, anyway, and I think I have most of what I want to do figured out.

Embarrassed to Post

I am truly embarrassed to admit that yes, after saying I was going replace the floor and rebuild the Aliner, then saying I was not going to rebuild it, then saying I was, then stating emphatically I wasn’t… several times…. I am now gutting it and planning to rebuild it.

Bathroom out, refrigerator is next to go.

The economy is the reason.  I don’t DARE go into debt with the US on the verge of default.  And even if they don’t default, the debt is so unsustainable no matter what they do that we will eventually crash.

Also, I prayed about it and asked God for specific direction on whether to rebuild it or not.  The next day I was looking at campers on the net and studying floorplans when I got that awful feeling that I can only relate to the extreme mental warning I get when I am thinking about camping someplace unsafe for the night.  I have learned when I feel that warning not to try to rationalize it away, but to get out of there as quickly as I can.

Later, I walked out into the Aliner and felt the most profound sense of peace.  All of the sudden the idea of gutting it and rebuilding it didn’t seem overwhelming.  I analyzed what I actually need in a camper, and the answers are a safe place to sleep, a bathroom, a refrigerator, and a place to fix coffee and cook light meals.  And the Aliner really can have everything I need.  I had just wanted bling.

So, due to the extreme heat, I am only working on the camper for two hours a day.  I do whatever I can get done in those two hours, then call it a day.  It’s going to take a while, but I’m not on a schedule.  The only deadline I have is our trip home for Thanksgiving.  And I’m sure I’ll have it redone by then.

 

 

No Camping for a While

Searing temperatures for the foreseeable future.

 

Several things have converged to paint this summer as a disappointing non-camping event.

One is the searing heat.  It’s the beginning of June and already we are experiencing the worst of midsummer temperatures.

Secondly is that the floor in the Aliner has completely  rotted out again.  I can stand in the shower and the floor dips toward the edge of the trailer.  We have to step over an 8 inch rotted area inside the door.  And the floor under the water heater and refrigerator is mushy.

What makes this seem like an impossible hurdle to me is that I gutted the trailer a couple of years ago and treated the floor with PC Petrifier, which is supposed to plasticize rotten wood and keep it from further deterioration.  Too late I learned that I should have used clear penetrating epoxy sealer funneled into the wood.  Or better yet, I should just have replaced the whole floor at that point.

Also, I thought I had the leaks fixed, but very obviously I didn’t.

Additionally, the trailer is 4-1/2 years old and the edges of the skylights are cracking from UV damage.  I have some of the cracks fixed with epoxy, but the Georgia sun has done a number on the Lexan.  Those bubble skylights are expensive to replace, and I would need 3 of them.

So I’ve decided to cut my losses on the trailer.  I’m not dumping any more money into it.  Hopefully I can replace it in a few months with a molded fiberglass trailer that has a reputation for quality, like Casita or Scamp.

If not, our camping days are over.

Bees, Blossoms and 80 degrees in February

Wasp pollinating fruit tree blossoms

Although honey bees have virtually disappeared from this area, I was very happy to see that the apple, pear and plum tree blossoms were being pollinated by swarms of small wasps, mason bees and a few small bumblebees.    I tried to get photos of them, but they are so small and move so quickly that this fuzzy little guy was the only one I could capture on camera.  So we might not have honey, but at least we will have fruit!

The weather here in north Florida is unbelievable.  It was 80 degrees on my mother’s back porch in the shade today.  It was really hot in the sun!  But ice and snow and cold are still too fresh in my memory for me to complain.

Mom's house

But if it’s this hot now, I wonder what kind of summer we are in for.

Today we visited Daddy’s grave and Mom put new flowers on it.  I forgot to take my camera.  I hope that Dad is aware of how much we love and miss him.

This little tatted star flower needs blocking to straighten out its points.

Our usual camping spot under the big live oak at Mom's place

I’ve done a bit of tatting in the evenings, but not as much as I expected.  I completed Monica Hahn’s star flower pattern from her Christmas Angels book.   I’ve also started over several times on a flowery snowflake pattern that I don’t quite understand.  Maybe I’ll get it on my next attempt.  🙂

Yesterday Ron discovered that the floor under the water heater is even softer than the floor under the shower.  So apparently my original floor fix with the PC Petrifier was worthless, as I obviously didn’t get the leaks fixed.  So when I get back home, I’ll start the job of replacing the floor.

I thought of using marine plywood, but it is so frightfully expensive.  I think I’ll just use regular plywood, but soak it with clear penetrating epoxy sealer.  That should last for years, I hope.

 

Getting the Wiring Done

The little Aliner is in the shop.  But first she got her walls and ceilings scrubbed, curtains washed and ironed, floor scrubbed, cupboards cleaned, and her exterior washed and waxed.

The wiring should be finished in a couple of days, I hope.

Then, next week, she will hit the road for a week of camping!

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