So Let’s Get to The Point

How has it been more than 3 years since I’ve written a blog post? Oh! I know! We’ve had a global pandemic, renovated a 4 bedroom farmhouse in Weedville that was originally built in 1864 (with a random school bus abandoned in the woods), and built a new 2 bedroom cabin in Benezette (that we meant to build in 2020). We met a really cool race car driver and started sponsoring a race car, and then, we spent two busy Rut seasons running 3 cabins by ourselves! Right. That’s kept us busy!

We have been so blessed to have guests that have stayed with us through all of that excitement. I’ve been surprised to hear that a lot of you have read all of the blog posts (Deb W, Tim F, Andy L, Dad, Edgar, I’m looking at you [and, thanks for reading!]) and want to hear more about the adventures of remodeling an old house, and building a new one with supply chain issues. While some of it I’d rather forget (carpeted bathrooms and 20 week lead times for doors and windows), it’s all turned out great (at least we think so based on our returning guests!).

Over the next few months, I’ll be blogging about these projects to give you a behind the scenes look at just how glamorous building, renovating and renting vacation cabins can be. I hope you’ll enjoy our stories as much as you enjoy our cabins and as much as we enjoy hearing your stories when you rent an In The Sticks Cabins cabin.

Smooth Operator

Merry Christmas everyone. I suppose you’ve all been missing your weekly updates. Well, I’ve been missing my sanity and sitting on my couch. So, we’re all disappointed. 🙂

December always brings lots of activity, what with the shopping and wrapping and baking and general over indulgence. However, this year we added Christmas parties, birthday parties and weddings to the list of things that we wanted to cram into one month. Oh yes, and we’re still finishing drywall.

I say we, but ultimately, I’m still just the tool washer. Drywall is messy business and even more so without running water! There has been some sanding going on so we feel good about paint soon! The husband is glad to hear the word paint, because that’s my thing. The father (who is my dad), has a paint spray gun that he is going to loan us. I’m looking forward to trying that out for primer and the bedrooms. In the living and dining rooms, I won’t be able to spray due to the half wood walls. (Which, P.S, by-the-way, I put poly on last weekend.)

So now on to the wild life! We saw a few deer on Saturday morning, but no elk. On Sunday afternoon a flock of seagulls turkey came through the back yard. They were some big boys! (Note: I don’t actually know that they were boys. I looked up how to tell. Males [Called Jakes. Girls are called Jennies!] have brightly colored heads, which I didn’t find clarified anything for me. Also, evidently all turkeys have a snood [the red dangling thing].

As with the past few weeks, I didn’t see any elk until we were headed out of town! They’re even more fuzzy now than just a few weeks ago!

We Are…

This weekend was a blur of activity! The husband headed to Benezette on Friday night, right through the Penn State/Ohio State traffic. His journey ended up better than that game. (Listen. I’m no football super star but seriously coach, what was the plan with that last play?)

I was home to chauffeur the kid to multiple activities and for my work picnic.

The major task at In The Sticks Cabins was ceiling insulation. When the little sister and I tackled insulation a few weeks back, we were not ambitious enough to hang it above our heads.

It’s looking extra warm in here! This cabin will be great for winter use with all of that insulation!

The Husband was also able to get the last of the plumbing lines installed. That spring water will be flowing through those pipes soon enough!

This week we have drywall being delivered on Friday and it looks like it’ll be another dry weekend (knock on wood).

Sweet Success

Today, the husband was able to get the grinder pump for the sewer system set.  After weeks of rain the past few days of glorious sun have allowed things to dry up and the final pipes to be connected.


Now, after a few months of piles of dirt, I hope we can begin to return the dirt to Mother Earth.  The elk will be so happy to not have to trudge over Mount Sewer System anymore!

He was also able to get the last pieces of the siding up so the outside is in good shape! I’m off to Benezette on Friday afternoon.  I’m not sure what’s in store for this weekend, but I’ll keep you posted when I can!

Go Grand…

So – The husband spent last week in Benezette getting the cabin ready for visitors.  He had his rented mini excavator and a plan to get the sewer system installed.  Yay for sewer!

Unfortunately, mother nature had a different plan.  Previously dug deep trenches had already collapsed in on themselves from all of the rain we’ve had this year.  The basically non-stop rain we experienced last week helped matters, like, zero percent.  Every where he dug just collapsed in more and more.  He told me it was like digging the new Pennsylvania Grand Canyon (coincidentally, it’s only an hour and half drive from Benezette)!  The big pump helped to evacuate some of the water but not the super damp soil.

So, he filled those in and started fresh(ish).  Progress went much more smoothly from then on.  And then!  This weekend!  That big yellow ball that lives in the sky returned!  And the trenching was a success!

It did however result in a pile of dirt I’m affectionately calling, Mount Sewer System.


While the digging was going on, I went to town to pick up the last of the supplies we’d ordered to finish the siding.  They ordered the wrong thing.  So, back I came to tackle the grounding rods.  For those of you not familiar, grounding rods are eight foot long copper rods that must be pounded the whole way into the ground and attached to the main electrical system.  You read that right, pounded the whole way into the ground.  Regardless of being located at the top of a mountain.  Regardless of millions of slate veins running through the ground.  Pounded into the ground.  This was my job.  And I NAILED it! (But didn’t get a picture, so just take my word for it.)

With the interior plumbing installed and the electrical lines all run – we’re about ready for drywall folks!  The husband is staying yet another week to finish up the things that need inspected (sewer and electric).  Hopefully next weeks picture updates will be more exciting.

In the meantime – check out these pictures of elk from last week and this weekend.