The Projects


Pre-move in.

and A Work in Progress

A few months later. (2022)


Garden / Chickens

The garden was lovely in the spring...then the chickens discovered fresh vegetables.  Is the garden grown for the chickens or the chickens grown for the garden?    Now it's on to finding what they won't mess with.  Lavendar. Check. Mustard Greens. Check. Petunias. Check. Okra. Check. That's my list so far.  I'll keep working to fund the growth of this list! 

The Maisonette

The Addition

This has been the BIG project.  2020-2021 didn't make it easy - shortage of contractors, cost of supplies, COVID, and lack of project management in the construction world (but we won't go there here).   In August we started the search for a builder that would be willing to take on our project.   So many builders couldn't get architects that weren't already scheduled for 6 months out.  The builder we found not only had access to an architect - this architect came out, sat in the yard, drew the main house, looked at roof lines, etc.  It was meant to be.  The timeline for the total project ended up looking something like this: 

August - Builder confirmed

September - House plans confirmed

October, November, December - contracts and a lot of sitting and waiting but new baby donkeys surprised us so we were distracted

January - more waiting

February 17-23 - The Big Freeze.  Good thing we didn't have exposed pipes in the ground 

February 25 - Ground work started!  Good thing Texas thaws quickly. 

April - Foundation framing approved by the city.  Important to know that the city inspectors were rather inconsistent. 

May - torrential rains but foundation got poured May 6th

June - framing! 

July - new septic put in tying in the addition - but the plumber aye aye aye!  

August - the guessing game of when move in can happen begins

September - cabinet guys goes missing - found out he had COVID

October - frustration grows but things start getting D.O.N.E. and week to week game of inspections begin and move in happens on October 25


March blew into North Texas in 2021 with buckets of rain.  Buckets.  I thought the chickens were going to drown.  The donkeys refused to move in the high water - it was just a mess.  We carried in tons of bags of rocks, we dug trenches, and we watched the water (daily) and redug if necessary.  


With two donkeys we estimated that we needed 3 compost bins...with 4 donkeys we expanded.  Alan keeps a rotation going - but monthly throws a lot of &%I#!  

The Kitchen and the Porch

When the barn was delivered Alan had a vision that he could turn this into his man-cave/kitchen/go to spot.  He worked with the barn builders to build a porch.  But the donkeys invaded.  So then he worked with the barn builders to build a new cover on the side to cover what would be his kitchen area.  

Cabinets were built, walls were erected to block the wind, platforms were built for the smoker and cooking gear.  The donkeys thought that was brilliant.  They especially like the kitchen area as a place to potty.  So Alan built a fence. Now the kitchen area is blocked - no donkeys allowed. 

The Trailer

Did I mention we have a trailer.  We scrambled on a cold Sunday morning to find a trailer anywhere in the DFW area.  By Sunday evening we had located one - on a lot owned by a guy that had COVID.  Luckily the guy answered the phone and understood we were clueless and needed a trailer ASAP to get Milo and Poppy to the vet.  (That's a whole story - I mean really, who uses an equine vet but doesn't have a way to get the equine to the vet!)  The guy let us "rent" the trailer - and then low and behold before we could even take the trailer back we had another momma donkey being mean to her baby and had to use the trailer again.  If that's not a sign - Good Lord what does it take!?  We bought the trailer.  It's rickety and rusty.  But the floor is still solid and the doors still lock.  Or are they?  Next project - getting this trailer in tip top shape so we never have to use it again!!