Tag Archives: freezing

Moving West: Week 1

Here we go, the real adventure begins, our little family of four on its own on this mountain that we do not know yet!  Week 1 of Moving West:

We had two days of nice temps where we went a picked out our Christmas Tree, and began more work on the house.


The kids had a blast “picking out” their first live Christmas tree.  Nora got the final say and this was it!

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Then it hit. The Cold Snap – Yes, two days after we moved in the cold snap made its way here!  10 days of below 0 temps, thank goodness there is not much for wind up here.  So here we are 2 days into this new life, its snowing like crazy, this storm dropped over 2.5 foot of snow (and its snowed at least 4-6 inches a week since, good thing the temps have been back to normal so there is some melt each week), negative temperatures, and here we are, snowed in without a chance to get set up.


No woodstove to heat this older home, the furnace hasn’t kicked off for 3 days and the temps are ranging from 56-65 degrees (yes that is inside).  Not bad if it was just The Rancher and myself, but two little kids, not cool!  No cooking stove (you read that right) so not even able to use that for heat, I became an expert crockpot and electric skillet wife, as well as dressing in layers and electric heaters (look out electric bill this month!).  As soon as we could get out (4 days after the storm started), we headed to Sheridan, WY for supplies.

Priority #1: Gear to hook up the woodstove.  Priority #2: Gear for the cook stove.  Priority #3: What would seem like an overload of groceries (but turns out you can freeze a ton of stuff, like milk and cheese and they are just as good as if fresh!).

So onto the funny part of this adventure (oh yes, this whole thing is now funny, that week…not so much).  We get home to set up the woodstove.  The Rancher and I have no experience with this so here we go, youtube videos, they explain everything right?!  I keep track of the kiddos and William begins working on getting the chimney pipe, everything works, it fits, and we should have fire!  So we get one started, its going!  YES!  And then…it only took a minute, and the fire is out and the house is filling with smoke!  We can only get one window open in the house (the rest are froze shut and we don’t want to break them!) so the front door and side window are open, the one fan we have is rolling and we are trying to clear out the house.  William begins to search for the issue.  Turns out, there were shirts shoved up the top of the chimney pipe to stop the outside air from getting into the house while there was no woodstove hooked up.  Now to take apart the pipe we just put together, and start again!  YES!

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Love the smell of a wood stove, it truly makes a house cozy!  However, I love the way Coal burns ALL NIGHT.  Its so nice that our stove can burn both!

We are now officially Mountain People!

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Give me some feedback on your fix it yourself fun!  I know there must be other people with good stories!


Moving West: The Beginning

This extreme cold weather is giving me some Déjà vu.  So I think it is about time to fill everyone in on the tales of our moving west at the end of November during the first super duper cold snap we had.  I will start from the beginning – mid-late November the First Moving Day: Kid Free –


Kid-Free: Except for help “packing”

William and I are super heros and packed up and unpacked this first trailer, including appliances – the house we were moving into had none left – pretty much by ourselves, which is a feat in itself with two little ones.  Thank goodness for great babysitters.  We also packed up our painting supplies (a paint sprayer thank goodness because this place was in need of some major updates).  And since this would be The Rancher and I’s third house remodel/build together  – yes we have only been married for 5 years – we were prepared…or so we thought.

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Long, Tall trailer we took – Thanks Richard Gross!

So the road trip begins!  All was going great, until we stopped at Buffalo, Wy for gas, we had been fighting a terrible wind and ice spots on the road.  The Rancher was doing a once over on everything, and somewhere along the lines, we had lost an entire tire, not just blew a tire, we lost the whole thing!  One would think you would notice this change, except for the wind was so stinking crazy (because we are in WY, that we just thought it was the wind pushing us).  Thank goodness for the great people at Big Horn Tire, they fixed us up and we were back on the road in no time.  Mind you so far we have been on the road for nearly 6 hours, and this trip total normally takes 6 hours, and we still had many miles left on icy/snow/wind roads.

Finally we get to the Lodge Grass exit.  Pull off, and meet the sellers of our property on the road, they have a huge crew!  5 trucks, 3 trailers and lots of people.  They were still working on getting moved out!    Well, Not exactly how I had envisioned this.  I guess we were here so on the drive up the mountain we prepared ourselves to get ready to paint.  Except once we got there, the house was locked!  Yes, locked!  The bunkhouse was left open, so we got ourselves settled in there and made a game plan for the next day.


The “New” House (Are we at the north pole?!)  Looks like it :D!

Hi Ho! Hi Ho! It’s off to painting that paneling we go!   No time to sheetrock as the official move day is about 5 days from now and the kids will be with us, and I HATE sheet rocking.  So paint it is.  If we wouldn’t have had the paint sprayer we would not have gotten the job completed as there was the dining room, living room and all three bedrooms that I required painted because we moved.  The rest is pretty much old wallpaper that is peeling.  That will have to wait for another run of energy.


After 12 hours of painting everything had 2 coats of primer, 1 coat of paint…GOOD ENOUGH.  Now for the carpet, I’m not a big fan of carpet to begin with and it is throughout this house.  So we began ripping up the very old, yucky carpets to replace with more carpet.  Sometimes you just have to use what you have and can afford!   So now the house has a new living room floor (all the bedrooms need replaced but we are doing that every couple weeks!), and a new paint job and most of it.  We opened up one of the bedroom doors and it fell off (whoops!), and of course there is the door that won’t shut.  The Kitchen was another mess but after much scrubbing and a new coat of paint on the cupboards it is just fine.  There are several layers of wall paper throughout the dining room and kitchen, the most recent are pictured below.  It was a hard 24 hours of work/unpacking and getting the move started, but at least Grandma and Grandpa had the kids!

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This is the Kitchen Before/After Picture – Stuck with the Blue background because we had leftover paint from Cody’s room!




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I think we can all safely say I’m glad the quick remodel job is over.  Home is definitely where the HEART is, and blood, sweat, and tears!  Hard to leave a brand new home to go work on making another house home, but as The Rancher says, “You don’t buy a ranch for the house!”  After being here for 6 weeks now I can officially say this house is definitely our home!  Amazing what some paint, TLC, and new curtains will do for a place!

Have you ever had to remodel?  Tell me your funniest story!

More to come on this move later in the week, trust me….this was just the beginning!