Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Homemade Park Bench

I want a bench to sit out on the dock and fish/read/relax.  It needs to be very heavy so that it won't wash away when we have the inevitable hurricane. 

We found a bench like this for sale -$400 for a 4' bench!!!!

So, resourceful Duane decided it was worth the effort to just make one.

He did this yesterday -  made a mold out of scrap lumber.

 Getting ready to mix the concrete.

Concrete poured and setting up.

And this is as of this morning - first side out of the mold.  Ready to mold another.  You can't see it, but he has molded in thick strips of plastic composite "wood" at the edges to bolt the wooden seat and back boards.   Will update when we have a complete bench!!

Tuesday, July 18, 2017


I haven't posted much about our purchase of a catamaran - so I thought I'd go on and put that out there.  Not certain yet - will go to Texas to get it in October....  see it here. 

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Kiddo's visit

We had the kids over for dinner....Richard drove his new electric car.  He took me for a spin in it - really cool!  Nice acceleration and quiet as a mouse!   Nice visit.

Thursday, July 13, 2017


I tossed out a bunch of zinnia seeds that I had harvested last year....they came up nicely along-side all my bulbs.  Since the bulb flowers are long gone, they lend a nice colorful air to the summertime garden!  And they were free!

Saturday, July 08, 2017

Evening with neighbors

Diane and Pat invited us over last night for an impromtu cookout. 

Hmm hmm good!!

Diane made another one of those wonderful cobbler dishes - this time with some fresh blueberries added I need to get on a diet!

And we finished the evening with just a bit of "shag" lessons with new friend Leroy....I have two left feet!!  Good fun!

Friday, July 07, 2017


Not to be outdone by my sis....I got some blueberries too!!!

Lindy was out of town for a long trip so told us we could go rob her tree.  I try to never ignore free fruit....pretty tree!

Diane was helping pick - we took a big bowl full...

A gallon bag full - to the freezer.  Can't decide what I'll do....maybe a cobbler!

Tuesday, July 04, 2017

Finished shoreline bulkhead repair!

Finally got the bulkhead repair finished!   I know it doesn't look like much, but we moved/placed 34 TONS of rip-rap!  And an equal amount of back-fill dirt.   Hope it holds up to the stormy weather that we are surely to have at some point.

Sunday, July 02, 2017

July 4th

Well, it's not really July 4th yet, but the Town of Oriental put on their fireworks display on Saturday night....we had front row seats at the marina.....unfortunately, my phone's camera didn't want to take photos very well.  But you get the idea.   Sharon and Buddy came over for the night, so super fun!

This morning we went kayaking!  Duane and I were in the tandem kayak, Sharon and Buddy in the individual ones.

  Up Brown Creek and all the way up Spicer's  into the marsh.  Fun and so, so peaceful!

Saturday, July 01, 2017

Rip-rap shoreline bulkhead repair

We've picked up where we left off a few months ago....more shoreline needing repair....the area between the two arrows is what we focused on today.  The existing bulkhead has eroded and there are just a few rip-rap stones left.  Our process is to bring wheel barrow loads of topsoil to fill the eroded voids.   New heavy duty fabric is used to hold it all together.  All the stones have to be moved one-by-one on top of the new fabric.

Lots of loads of topsoil....getting ready to move the existing stones.

Existing stones moved on top of the fabric.

Starting to add new rip-rap on top of the fabric/new soil.

This is our progress...the sun is going down so the sun is not bright.   Good day's work!!  More later!

Friday, June 30, 2017

Tree stumps

Wow, I've been lazy about updating the blog lately!!!

We have lots of tree stumps that need to be we rented a stump grinder for the day.  Neat piece of machinery! 

We also cut down a few of the smaller trees while we had the equipment to dispatch the stumps.

Stump before:

No stump after! 

Sunday, June 18, 2017


Sometimes, I do things that are not well thought out....for instance, lighting a campfire when it's 90 degrees out.  In my defense, I wanted to roast hot dogs.   The hot dogs were great.  We did Not sit around the campfire!

Friday, June 16, 2017

Driveway improvement

Our driveway at Oriental is just a bit too narrow - the dump trucks have had difficulty making the sharp turn. 

So we decided we should add an extra 4' piece of concrete pipe to make the driveway just a bit wider.  

We hauled the pipe all the way from Fuquay-Varina!  I had called all around in the New Bern area.  Strange, but it was really hard to find the small concrete pipe we needed.

Duane dug out the area needed for the pipe installation.  Keep in mind that ditches down here are a bit different from ditches in the mountains.  Ditches really don't have any "flow" - there is not "downhill".  Basically, it's all level and the water just ponds up in the ditch and eventually it just seeps away thru the ground.

We pulled the 400 lb pipe off the back of the pickup using chains.

Pipe mated up with the existing concrete pipe.   We used a come-along (attached to the pickup's bumper)  to pull it slowly into place.  Then we shoveled very fine ground stone around it to lock it in place.

Then much stone was shoveled in place to finish it up.

And  now the turn into the drive way is not so sharp!

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Asheboro Airport Fly-in

Saturday was the annual Fly-in at the Asheboro Airport.

The local Civil Air Patrol cadets presented the colors - beautiful day!

Lots of planes, lots of folks wandering looking at the planes.

The museum feeds all the pilots a hot-dog lunch....I obviously couldn't eat the hot dog, but they made me a "slaw dog" instead.  And those baked beans were really good - so sweet they tasted like candy!  (and they had no meat added!)

Our flight instructors took turns providing "introductory flights" to those brave souls.

 These folks were first time flyers.

Look at the face on the little boy - he was super excited!!  He got to fly the plane and he was happy!

And this man (in the safari hat) wanted his 84 year old friend to go with him, but the friend just didn't feel like it.  So, he asked this nice lady that just happened to be sitting in the terminal building if she'd like to go for the flight with him - a total stranger!  She jumped at the chance!  The flight instructor (Taylor - with the "I love the smell of jet fuel in the morning" tee shirt on) says they had a great time too!

Thursday, June 08, 2017

More Oriental fun

We are hit-and-miss on cycling this week.  Even though the rest of the state has had fairly nice weather, the coast has been a bit rainy.

But we did another long bike ride- this time we decided to turn off on every little side road and explore!  Unfortunately, my Garmin fitness tracker ran out of battery before we completed the loop.....Duane's tracker says the total mileage was fun ride!  Again, we did a bit of stopping and wandering around docks so the time is not "all riding".  I just thought the pattern of all our sideroads was cool.

Here's one of the docks we stopped at -  it's right across Brown Creek from our dock!

The view across the "creek" to our dock....they call them creeks down the mountains, this would definitely be a river!

And almost home, one of our neighbors chickens apparently "flew the coup"!

Sunday, June 04, 2017


We did a long bike ride today -  19 miles - from our lot all the way to Oriental and return.  The map from my Garmin watch looks like it's just a single path, but it's actually a double line since we re-traced our path to return.  Note the 1373 calories!   (the time is not accurate since we stopped several times for brief visits)

One of the stops was a rest break over near  The Bean (coffee shop).  Got me a large coffee and enjoyed it just relaxing near the Oriental Harbor Marina. 

And another stop was at Piggly Wiggly on the way back out of town - we were running low on chocolate at the camper......I chose a nice deli container of chocolate covered peanuts.  I tied the bag to my handlebars - and proceeded to bike for about 7 miles.  In the sun.  It was 86 degrees.  Probably not a good idea.

Here's what chocolate covered peanuts look like after being in the sun for 45 minutes.  I do testify that it is possible to cut a chunk off.   And it tastes just terrific!

Saturday, June 03, 2017

A little fun in Oriental

Just some random stuff at Oriental.

The mimosa tree right at our dock -

Love those delicate flowers!

I was laying on the hammock and I heard a little "rustling" underneath was our friendly turtle making a bee-line (at a pretty good pace!) towards the water.

I've been fishing a good bit - but not catching anything!  Oh well.  The water is really warm - making a good environment for these jellyfish.

Mesmerizing to watch them slowly pulse along.

Went for a long bike ride - here we're at Point Marina - looking across brown creek at our dock!  Funny to see it from a different perspective.

And last - I can't remember if I posted a picture with the awning installed.   Here we are, snug as a bug!