I don't know if there's anything more empowering than taking on a challenge about which you're not all that certain and seeing it through. These past couple of weeks have been mind-bending for me as I've ventured on my own into electrical, propane and water systems, and it's been GREAT! Each time I complete a modification, I can't help but credit my dad with all the hours he's spent with me handing him tools, learning about mechanical doohickeys, explaining machines to me (sometimes over again).
Today I found myself thinking, "Dad would be proud of me!" It's not a thought I often have, and I certainly don't call him every time I complete a project - but today I had to! This afternoon I put some of the final touches on the trailer, including creating and installing retention rods in the refrigerator door. The rods that help keep items on the half-shelves were missing when I bought the trailer, so I figured I had nothing to lose in trying to create new ones. I purchased some 3/16" copper rods from our friendly local hardware store, measured, kinked the rod the way I wanted it, then sawed and snapped off the remainder. The result: three functional shelves where before there were only indentations that wouldn't hold a thing. WOO HOO! OK...so maybe it doesn't seem like a big deal to anyone else, but I love the process of facing this challenge, then designing and building a solution. WONDERFUL!
The girls also helped me in Junior again, this time installing some child-safety locks on doors and drawers to keep them from popping open as we head down the road. The girls watched me measure (I was trying NOT to rush, but it was getting dark), then screwed in the brackets and the anchor screw. I believe every time E & V work on Junior they become more attached to it and more excited about our impending departure.
Don't worry, Mom! We have a project set aside JUST FOR YOU when we arrive in Washington! :)
In other news, as I looked over the western Nebraska section of our trek tonight I realized we'd be in My Other Mother's old stomping grounds. Oh how I wish I could pick her brain about the best places to see in the area! She talked quite fondly of the friends she made and the community in which she took part while in the Bridgeport/Scott's Bluff area.
We keep coming across reminders of her in our travels not only in the county, but well beyond. Last winter, the girls and I visited Hidden Villa for a homeschool group event. While there, we happened into the Big House only to discover that THIS was the home in which she'd lived in college! The ranch was the home of her best childhood friend's mother (who also designed the related hostel) and grandparents. How could it be that we just keep coming upon these places? Honestly, I didn't know Hidden Villa was the place, but there was the family picture on the wall of the Duveneck House just across the field from the Dana Barn. I wanted to ring her up to tell her about my discovery, and to hear her laugh at my excitement over something I should've known all along.
What will we discover in Nebraska?!