Still making progress on the site. As noted, the pond is full which is a delight, especially since it is higher than expected when full, giving me perhaps as much as 6 feet of depth in the pond. Hopefully this means that I will always have water available for myself and my garden.
The excavation continues as well, and is as of 6:30 this evening about 10-12 feet deep at the lowest point. There has been a lot of rock, and unfortunately much ledge so going is slow meaning that this is pushing my budget as I knew that it would once I opted for the new site... but the incredible views and the dramatically increased privacy should offset the additional effort I will have to make to recoup the additional savings I will have to use to pay for this greater expense. I am also going to have to make some cuts somewhere if I am to suck up this expense and still stay under my budget of $5000 for the house. The excavation, clearing, and pond, could come close to half of that cost. I can deduct the pond at least from that particular budget as I consider it separate from the house, but simply moving the numbers around like some political ideologue won't create any additional wealth.. Still, the reason for moving this to another category is to keep my numbers straight on the house itself so as to work on documenting what it takes to build a home, and then a homestead even in this downward economy.
No photos today, though I have a couple from yesterday. The camera is fighting me and perhaps on its last legs. She has served me well in travels from Texas to China, to Canada, and across the US. The motor on the lens is failing so I will have to fall back upon one given to me recently which would otherwise have been simply discarded. It is sometimes amazing what you can get simply be being open to the idea that everything need not be new, packaged, shiny, and meeting the approval of the most uptight constipated consumer..
I seeded the hillside today with annual rye so as to hopefully decrease the amount of erosion that occurs this winter. I still have more seeding to do, but that will have to wait until the excavation is completed. I probably have more seed than I need at two hundred pounds of seed, but in this case the seed is relatively cheap insurance against erosion, and for a time at least it will give the appearance of a fancy manicured English lawn.. not that I will make any effort to keep that look!
Through one of the many groups to which I belong, I discovered a wonderful little wind generator at bargain basement pricing: http://www.usawindgen.com/200hd.htm
I am very close to ordering one of these, perhaps the 300 watt model, to provide power for my home in the winter, and any time that the wind is blowing more than 7 miles an hour. Even at the government subsidized (read : "immorally taken labor of others") electricity available locally, a little wind generator like this pays for itself in no time. Heck the monthly charge simply to have a hook-up with the local "co-op" electric "company" (again, this is merely a branch of the federal government, not an actual company) would pay for this little generator in less than 6 months, and with the increase that they announced recently, perhaps less than 4 months! This is not exactly the doom and gloom that the folks opposed to individual energy generation (again the feds to a large degree) preach. They tell us that the best possible return is 20 years.. For this they assume a Larry Hagman (yeah, JR Ewing!) approach: buy gigawatt solar arrays to cover any and all possible usage! Crazy approach, though kudos to Mr Hagman as he did this first for his own house which is larger than he planned (he let his wife design it) and voluntarily provides power to some local low income families he screened.
The point is that we need not adopt these massive arrays to account for our power usage, but rather make different choices when we know power is limited. I won't do without my comforts, such as the internet and computer usage, but that does not mean that I need to be able to power up a stadium either.
Okay.. perhaps a bit of a rant.. gist of all of this: much progress is being made, some things are really coming together, and we can live very comfortably, in fact even luxuriously if we think before we act or spend.
More pics tomorrow..