My husband doesn’t waste a thing. Actually, he hoards them. I’ve written about excess vehicles, excess tires, and excess junk. I’m a hoarder too, but my hoarding comes in the form of paper products (books, notebooks, cute little to-do list books that just add to my craziness), so it’s easier to hide. When I write about his excesses, they tend to disappear, so I’m creating a pretty good system around here. These things don’t really disappear, they move, but that works for me. Out of sight, out of mind!
When things around here start to pile up, he does come up with interesting, yet useful ways to recycle them, or what trendy people call upcycle. They are upcycled to him. They seem silly to me. Sometimes he even gets the urge to upcycle while driving down the road and finding something for sale that is way past its prime.
Here are a few of his masterpieces:
1.) A wheelchair with a welder on it. He found this wheelchair at a local sale, and knew he had a purpose for it. Now he can wheel his welder to whatever old gate is falling apart.
2.) Tractor tires have been made into water troughs for his cows so he can fence them out of ponds. I believe he took this idea from the magazine Farm Show, where other creative people like himself have sent in their best inventions. Since then he has tried to come up with other tractor tire uses since he found a place to buy them cheaply. Sand boxes and planters. I’m not even going to mention Pinterest to him because he’ll go insane.
3.) When he had sheep, and he didn’t want to spend a lot of gas money moving them to and fro, he would put them in the back of the S10 with cattle panels in the truck bed to keep them in.
He has lots more, but those are my favorites. I realized this week, that he got this from his dad. I guess you could call them caretakers of the planet, never letting anything go to waste, getting every last bit of profit out of them. When his dad looked around the farm, looking for a good shelter for his goats without having to spend a lot of time on it, he looked first at an old camper shell. When he told my husband about his scheme, to set up poles and put the camper shell on top, my husband had a genius idea.
“What about the old milk van?”
“What about it?”
“Can’t you just use that? Open up all the doors and let them climb inside if they need shelter.”
“Yeah, I think that will work.”
So they haul the old milk van to a nice spot, open it right up, and let the goats have at it. I’m not exactly sure what they are being sheltered from, the sun, the rain, the general horrific nature of Missouri weather, but they have a lot of goats. Will there be a line of old milk vans eventually, lined up and down the field so that all the goats have shelter? Because there are probably enough old milk vans around there to do the trick.
Of course I laughed when my husband told me, and he quickly realized that he shouldn’t have told me. I can’t help myself though. It’s a perfect example of how he works and how he was raised. Never, ever, give up on a vehicle. Put all your time and effort making sure it has just enough fluids to run, but not enough to cost you more than $5. Basically work your behind off on old vehicles, but when it comes to building, find the quickest, most cost effective way to take care of it.
I must also share that I laughed as I thought about writing this blog. I was glad that it wasn’t my farm that will one day be consumed with milk van goat sheds, but then I pulled in the driveway, got a tiny glimpse of a hidden Festiva, and realized to my horror, I too will have car shelters. He’s hoarding broken down Festivas around here, and by the off chance that one will have a part that he needs for the one running Festiva, he will turn them into something else to keep them around and so they’re still useful.
I can picture it now: a line of Festivas - blue, white, red, rust - all assigned to their own alpaca with its head out the window like it’s cruising down the highway.
Just kidding! We’re not alpaca people. It’ll be a pig, for sure, and I’ll wish we had goats.