Rural Life

There are two factors to living rural that one rarely ever thinks about as an urban dweller. I know I certainly didn’t appreciate how easy running water and flush toilets were. But when you have to take care of those matters yourself you develop a new respect for it. I mean I grew up rural but I never even thought about what had to be done at that point in my life.

A year or two into the rural life the septic effluent outlet froze up. So a trouble light into the tank and we poured kettles of hot water down into the outlet value in the middle of a freezing prairie wind. The next spring we created a crude little structure to protect the space from the worst of the prairie winds. It got run into with the hay mower a year ago or two ago and we played Russian roulette by not doing anything about it for a while.

In the ultimate recycling project category Ron has made use of the original veranda walls. They’ve been “aging” up against the fence line for a dozen years and yet that wonderful wood cedar is still in good shape. He cut them down to size and put edging on them.

He then built a little three sided shelter. He’s used some paving stones pieces to give it a base and has braced it appropriately. It’s going to get some landscape fabric and rocks on the enclosed area to help battle the weeds. Now the entire thing is more visible (seems we can’t seem to keep those trees alive to hide it) but it’s also not an eye sore anymore. There may be a moment or two where I want to paint it but I’m going to talk myself out of that crazy idea.

There are pros and cons to our water situation. We personally have no issues with a trickle system that provides us with great tasting quality water. The trees, grass and garden on the other hand wish we had an unlimited access. Long long term (seems we’ve been here a dozen years and it hasn’t happened yet so I guess it was a long long term project) we will install a pump and a LONG hose up from the big water to the north. In the short term we haul water for trees and water the gardens sparingly.

The other water item that doesn’t occur in the city isn’t “related” to water directly but it is power outages. City water runs regardless of electricity but not so when you run off of a pump in a tank and have no electricity. Our longest power outage was over 48 hours so it can have a big impact.

The long story about water evolved into this blog post when it was evident that my afternoon was to be spent watering. What I wanted to do was prime an old cupboard I am restoring but the trees get presidence over almost all other projects. So I haul and he works away till I get back, we water and then repeat x 4. The trees are holding their own and that’s important when you are homesteading. It’s a long term commitment and we are hoping that in another dozen years the trees will be filling in and creating a protective wind break without stealing the stellar views. Ah, that’s a good seque into my final photo as it illustrates the point!


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4 Responses to Rural Life

  1. kagould17 says:

    Rural life is rewarding, but seldom the picnic city folks idealize it as. I recall my years growing up in Southern and Northern Alberta. Whoever was first out of bed had to top up the oil stove with fuel and light the wood kitchen stove. Water had to be pumped in the warm weather and was often melted snow in winter. The bathroom was outdoors and trips were short at -40. What would we do these days with no old Sears or Eatons catalogues. I harken back to the time with the pride of survival, but certainly do not wish to return to it. Stay well Bernie. Allan


    • bernieLynne says:

      Oh gosh you really grew up “old school” as I know you are only 5 years older than I am. We did have a coal furnace and my dad always went down to stoke it in the am. We had a new house (built in 59 and moved into when I was 5 months old). I suppose that my oldest sister might have share some of your memories as before that they lived in the garage in the warmer seasons and an old house down the road for the winters.
      Even with the additional work we have I still love rural life but I sure wouldn’t want to do it from a true homesteader perspective. There is a #wethehomesteader hashtag on Instagram and it makes me pause that they use it — they are growing gardens, raising chickens and maybe a few pigs. All about returning to the roots and yet I wonder how many of these 30 something’s even realize how much they take modern conveniences for granted. Anyway, enough of my ponderings on that. Thanks, as usual, for dropping in reading and commenting. It’s always nice to have someone connect over a post.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. kagould17 says:

    Yeah, I am old. People always marvel that I did Grade 1 & 2 in a one room school house before we moved to a McGregor, Manitoba and eventually Winnipeg. One summer, my bedroom was a granary, near Stavely, Alberta. After that, our family housing was pretty basic even for rural Alberta. Glad to get a chance to read your blog Bernie. Allan


    • bernieLynne says:

      You aren’t that old! I also did grade 1& 2 in a one room schoolhouse before I moved to the “big” school! The garage that my family lived in had the bedroom attached and it was a granary. Common theme there!
      I am enjoying re reading the posts that you put comments on in this blog so the thanks is to you for reading and commenting!

      Liked by 1 person

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