Friday, July 6, 2018

Valiant's Pictures and Middle Grove

Karin came to help clean up Valiant for pictures. We needed to take the braids out of his mane and tail and give him a bath as these pictures were to blow up, put on canvas to hang on the apartment walls.

IF you would like to see the rest of his pictures click HEREValiant turns 9 years old tomorrow July 7th, He has matured into a wonderful obedient stallion. He is everything we hoped for when we bred Jenis to Raven 10 years ago. He sires gorgeous TALL sweet foals and we are thankful!
Diane and Mike invited us out to Middle Grove to see their finished tiny house so mom, Joan, Ruth and I drove out around 3:00 pm. We passed John on his 4 wheeler heading back to his house as we were getting ready to turn into the drive.  Spark was already there waiting for Rhonda. The outside decks are not done yet so this is a work in progress but the inside is now finished and is charming. The entire house is OFF-GRID.  They use solar panels for electricity and if needed a generator. The creek supplies running water and the house even has a flushing toilet, 2 sinks and a shower. (bottled water is a must for drinking)
Diane made use of every available inch. We were surprised how comfortable it was even with 7 of us in the living area. Below left to right is Mike, Diane, Ruth, mom, Spark and Joan. Behind the television is the fireplace, a real wood burning fireplace and in the stone wall of that fireplace Mike has the central vac. 

 Below is the kitchen area. The fridge is off to the left and above the microwave Diane put in shelves. Below the microwave and to the right of the sink there is plenty of cupboard space. 
 The sleeping area is upstairs and Diane has room to sleep 4.  There is another window air conditioner that is run by battery which keeps the upstairs very comfortable even in the hottest weather.  Below are the stairs, then a small bed for a child to the left and a twin size bed to the right. There is storage in the walls and led lighting on the ceiling. 
 Looking the other direction is the queen size bed and the television on a swivel stand. A nice size window is also on that wall. Diane also has storage in the chest in front of the bed. 
 A view of the window and the television swiveled out of the way.  
Not pictured is the bathroom. 
 The tiny house has a shed right next door to park the 4 wheeler (very necessary piece of equipment here)
 We decided to go swimming first so packed into the truck and drove over to the big lake.  Spark has such a nice set-up there. A big dock with a nice water slide and an easy entry platform to get into the water. The dock is equipped with a solar panel that pumps water up on the slide.  There are plenty of seats and lots of places to hook up boats. Spark has his solar powered sail boat and Mike has his pontoon boat and jet boat all hooked right up to the dock for easy entry. There is also another swimming dock out in the lake with more solar panels and a motor and this one also has an easy entry swimming platform. After swimming Mike and Diane took us on a very relaxing pontoon boat ride to the very end of the lake and back. Chewy loved it, Molly was scared so mom held her.
 As soon as we got back, mom, Diane, Ruth and Joan went back to the campground to build a fire and start cooking supper while Mike took me over to the horses on the jeep to get pictures of the foals for the owners. 
 After supper we took a long jeep ride to see the land. It really is big sky country in Illinois! That took a LONG time, not getting back until after the sun set. 
 There is just ONE place to get electricity and it is no where near the campground or lakes. It is far south where a neighbor ran electricity to his cabin. Mike was able to have the electric company put in a transformer and meter. He keeps his tractor plugged in during the winter with a tarp over it and this also runs the heat to the automatic waterer for the winter. 
 Below is just as the sun was setting. The colors did not come out true. We were amazed at the intense pink glow. 
 If you would like to see the rest of the pictures from today Click HERE.  Spark and Rhonda have moved their motor home there and will be camping out this weekend. Mike and Diane have invited our family to come out for boating, swimming and fishing tomorrow.

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