Have You Ever?

Hello friends, I hope this day finds you well. Today I’ve had another moment where I did something, tucked it away and then I see it produced by someone else.Someone else has made money off of the same thing that I did a year or more earlier.

If you didn’t know yet, I love to sing, not just while in the shower. Not just any singing either, I will belt it out like a blow horn if I am in the mood, and I am often in the mood.

My daughter hears a song on the radio and asks me “who is the original artist?” I tell her that the original artist is singing it right now. She will tell me it’s a female voice. I will sing a few lines and she just smiles and says, “oh, it’s you I was remembering”. heehee As I age I noticed I have developed a bit of stage freight, I did karaoke a bit ago and was nervous.

I also love to write, I like to create fun short stories and poems, I have even written a sermon just for the heck of it. I used to write down my musical creations and stopped because I thought I was being watched. Have you ever felt like you were being watched? Like things you did or said become a popular phrase, or a song comes out and you made it up a year before?

This happens to me, not just with music but also with poetry, stories, and a phrase I used. I started to think I was going crazy. I mean really, who the heck wants to follow me around? I’m nobody special so what the heck?

I have since decided to believe that creativity is like a whisper or image floating in the wind. I sometimes get a thought of a story, I’ll write it all out in my mind, but just as fast as it goes in my mind it’s gone. Poof! I don’t even remember what the heck it was about. I lose it before the pen and paper is found. So to me, a creative image that I could paint or a song to write, or a poem or whatever creativity that you do, if you don’t catch it and hold onto it then it moves onto another person. As in creativity waits for no man or woman, it has a desire to be told, sung, painted or expressed and it is not going to wait around for you to “get around to it”. Just as fast as it comes its off looking for someone else who is on able to grab it.

I am learning and trying to train myself to always have a pen and paper on me, and to hold that idea until I can write it down and share it. I think the “universe” has things to say and creative individuals are the way it speaks some times.

Or, I really am going a little bonkers.

Has this happened to you? Do you get the inspiration but it’s gone before you can get the pen and paper to write it down, or draw it?

 

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Naked on the shower floor

This is becoming a TV series, I should film this stuff. If you missed day one’s adventure please click here to read about my waking up with icicles adventure. Today is day two of the horrid storm, Jack is still throwing shards of ice at me. Is there a large dark storm cloud following me around? With the wind and ice shards on the attack I need a plan, I need to go where I can get warm, alas, I must abandon my vessel.

I tried to warm up sitting in the library typing out my recent events yet it does not end. Get this, the outside temperature is 1 Degree Celsius; what does this wise librarian do? Crank up the AC inside the library! I’m not an abominable snow man, I am woman, hear me roar. I assumed they were wise as they are surrounded by all these books, one would think they are all wise, after all wise people read a lot. I assumed wrong, everyone in here is dressed like they live in an igloo since the library has turned into one. I could only stand a few hours of this and decided to change locations. I ask myself, what is a great place to get a workout and get warm at the same time? Recreation centre of course. Sometimes I am impressed with myself, what great advice.

Oh this is going to be so great, I get my old lady swim suit concoction on. I am styling fashionable trunks made of blue beach style boy swim trunks, and for the swim top I have a fantastic pink with multi-coloured floral tankini swim top that covers my chubby tummy. Not matching, not even fitting right, it is at least one size to large. How do I know its too large you may ask? Because when I jump into the pool the top falls off over my head, and I flash all the fishies. When I get out of the pool the bottoms slide right off. I have the string on the shorts tied as far it will go to not startle or give nightmares to small children.

I strut out in my flashy attire and head for the hot tub. Since I decided I am growing out my leg and arm pit hairs I am sure some of the strange looks I am getting is in response to my impending furriness.  No matter, onward.

Oooo, I slide down into the hot tub, at first it feels like tiny little needles all over my body as it melts off the ice shards that are impeded into my flesh. I just took myself from 1 degree to 40 degrees Celsius, that’s a bit of a leap. It’s too hot at this point, I am not warmed up enough yet to handle this. I decide to try the steam room. In the steam room I’m able to control the temperature by adjusting the amount of steam, so I should be good here I suspect. Good, I am alone the controls are mine. I leave the steam off, its  a comfortable warm room. It is working, I am warming up a little. In walks the furriest man I have ever seen. He must be warm these days with all that fluffy fur he has, the ice and cold wind can’t get him. I am in envy, perhaps I could cut some fur off him and glue some on myself? No, that’s just gross. I am not liking him much right now, he has cranked the steam up to its max, in a couple seconds I am feeling needles and now suffocating. How do people breath in these things?

I swam my laps and headed for the showers. The shower room was so nice and warm that I suddenly felt very tired. My daughter took her shower and I decided to lay-down on the floor and rest for a minute. I fell asleep. It was so nice to feel warm, I’m naked on the shower floor on a towel, asleep. Absolutely bizarre, I just wanted to rest since the night was so sleepless, yet I did not expect to actually fall asleep. My daughter woke me after she finished her shower, then we headed home to the camper of ice and darkness. Wind is still trying to capsize my vessel and the cold is still trying to preserve me in ice, but I have a propane stove. I wonder how much propane is left?

 

Our First Trimester!

We put a lot of thought into this attempt to live in a camper. But still with all the reading of blogs, and web pages and watching YouTube vids and asking solar gurus we were still very naive. This was not at all the image we had in our minds. The stress started pretty much in day one, the day we bought the camper.

We lived in a shared home with an awesome room-mate but her lease was up and we had to leave. We decided that we could go into another shared home but we have done that before and it is very hard to get an awesome room-mate. So, the camper is what we did. We have been searching for a camper that will fit our size of life style we wanted to live. We searched the internet in our area and it was a river of RVs and campers. There were a lot, and it made me think that we should find something awesome. We looked and looked, months went by and winter was closing in and we had to move back into our car if we didn’t find something soon. Desperation took over and we took one that we hoped would be a good one. It is a 32 ft 5th wheel. The owner said he would deliver it to where we wanted for us, since I drive a small car it would have been very hard to move a 5th wheel. He said it was a 92, he lied. It’s a 89. He said it had no water damage, he lied. I almost fell through the loft floor the water damage was so bad. I didn’t notice this as I didn’t take steps that far up into the loft area to have this happen when looking at it. Silly me! He said the water heater didn’t work, he told the truth.  He said it was winterized, another truth. He said it was sealed just this summer start. he lied. When I went up to the roof after I got hold of a ladder, the sealant looked to be 5 years old. Then of course before I could seal it up fully, it rained. Oh did it rain, inside and out.

My daughter and I ripped out the loft and discovered that lofts do not have support across the front, oh no, it’s the bed that holds everything together. what a crappy way to build anything. I learned there that building a camper is as cheap as can be and is not worth those very large price tags. After we found someone with a powerful drill to drill in some 2×6’s into the frame so we can have a temporary fix of support and no falling through the floor we insulated and boarded it up. I even added some plastic to help with weathering. This process took two full weeks and a lot of elbow grease.

Then we moved in. That’s when we discovered the lie of the leaky roof, windows, walls, and vents. Oh yes, it all rained down on our sleeping heads. That was a long night I don’t mind sharing. Next morning up, up I go to the roof top. I see very crusted, pealing weathered caulking. Gaps, and even holes that looked like nail holes. So off to Home Depot again. A few dollars later and two days later, I hoped it is all sealed and ready to go. Just in time as it rained and hailed that night. So, was it sealed up tight now, water tight? Hell no!

The window where the awning pulled out was leaking. I looked with a magnifying glass and could not find a single hole. So I decided it was probably the awning itself some how it may be leaking into the wall and coming out the window inside. So I caulked that like it was a gingerbread house and voilà! No more leaks. Only now I am positive the walls are water damaged from years of leaks. I am sure of it. Our goal with this camper was to live in it this year, and when the weather warmed up we would rip off the camper from the frame and build our own tiny home. so the weather damage inside the walls I decided to not put more money into it now since it was going to be torn off in 4 or 5 months.

I bought a solar panel. Hooked that puppy up and thought it would charge my 12V marine deep cycle battery so it could run the fridge. HA! I thought it was working but the battery was just running down and two days later, no fridge. lost all our freezer stuff and some of the fridge stuff had to get tossed out but we learned. So learning about solar power is not as easy as we thought it would be. But I am strong, independent, I can make this happen. Well I discovered that is an expense at this time I am not willing to put out for. I have seen some very complex solar system set ups and I just want a simple one. I don’t want this adapter and that adapter, I have seen some simple ones and those are still pretty pricey. I am up to getting some 6V Gulf car batteries, since they are a bit cheaper. The other solar panel will have to wait until summer, or later, that will depend on money.

For now we are getting into the cold weather so we can put stuff in the fridge just because it is damn cold in the camper. For now we eat a good deal of raw vegan foods that can sit on the counter and the food that is cooked is the dry foods that can be stored, such a lentils, dried mashed potatoes, rice, quinoa, that type of stuff. This is not so bad as we used to be raw vegan for 10 years. This type of eating is easy and familiar. One trick with this is we have no electricity, so no smoothies, no blended ingredients to make nut cheese, or sauces, or cakes, or any of the typical raw foods. We are officially eating raw foods that you chop and / or mix in a bowl with a spoon. We have had to be very creative with our meals and in doing this I am writing a cookbook for this type of living.

As far as heating the camper we have used candles and the shared body heat under the blankets to stay warm through the night. I am waiting for a paycheque to buy a propane heater such as the Big Buddy or Mr. Heater type thing. I did look into the tiny wood stoves and since I grew up on wood stove for heat I am wanting to get that put in our unit we build. For now, we will use the propane heater.

I have plastic up around every window and spray expanding foam in nooks and crannies to seal out the sold drafts. I still need to skirt the unit and a blanket to Velcro to the door frame. I have the Velcro around the door, just need to sew the other half of the Velcro onto the blanket. Then I hope that is all that is needed for that.

I have a fire detector, and carbon monoxide detector, only now I need to get a gas detector. The camper does have one, only it is electric. It only works while plugged in.

Toilet. I am sure you may be curious how we can go the loo without using the toilet and flush system. This is where the compost toilet comes into place. I started with an electric compost toilet that we purchased. It would work awesome if it were plugged in, however our solar panel didn’t do what we thought and we can’t use that electric compost toilet. I searched around and found a non-electric compost system. Inspired by the lovable loo system I build my own. We love it. I was very amazed at how easy it is and how well it works. There is absolutely no smell in our camper. Even after those very smelling deposits. I watched some people’s posts in YouTube about this type of system and we tried saw dust. We did not like that at all. We tried hamster wood chips, that was the same as the saw dust. Then we tried the peat moss. This stuff is the best. I bought I hope enough to last the winter since I can only buy it here during the summer garden season.  I really hope I bought enough. I bought those large bails that take two people to lift, for $5.00 each. Super store and Wal-Mart sell them usually, we looked at garden stores and they wanted $26 for a 3 Kg bag. Absolutely ridiculous  price when one $5 bail is the size of my cars back seat. How does compost toilets work? After you make a deposit of #1 or #2 or #3 in the Boove’s case, you just take a scoop (like a pantry measure cup scoop) and scoop up some peat moss and cover the deposit. The rule of thumb is the same amount you deposit is the same amount you cover with. I find that urine is not a needed covering in most times but BM’s are covered for sure.

Water is not running either. Yet. I found a propane system that runs on battery to make water run and heats the water. I will get this in a few months as well, only right  now we go to our local recreation facility and go swimming and shower 4 or 5 days a week. We wash our clothes at the local laundry mat.  For the other water needs I pour out water from a 20 gal jug as needed. I heat water on the stove in a kettle for dishes and teas. The rest is just poured from the jug as needed. The two of us drink about 3 to 4 liters of water each a day and cooking is about another 2 liters/day plus dishes so we are using the 20 gal jug up in about 2 1/2 to 3 days when we are home over the weekend, and during the work week we use up the jug in about 3 to 4 days since we are not home for most of the time.

Here’s a tricky part. Charging our phones, tablets, and laptop. I am here at the library writing blogs, building a cookbook, typing stuff, answering emails, etc. All the while our units are charging it the library. At my work I plug in my phone and our batter bank charger so we have emergency power for our units if they run out before we get to the library or work. This has been frustrating at times. We used to charge the phones in the car but it was draining the battery to fast and it wasn’t able to charge fast enough, so now we just charge one phone at a time if we really need it.