My husband, David, was born and raised here in the Ozarks. I love hearing stories about when he grew up. He and his cousins tell about spending the night in the attic of their grandparent's house (and being woke up by "Pa Bill's" tobacco pouch strings tickling their noses). They spent so much time together. Their Uncles and Aunts were as close to them as their parents were. Most of David's uncles have passed on now, and the family has gotten much smaller, but they still like to reminisce about the old days.
Times were tough in the days of his grandparents. In order to get things done and to make things work the family had to all pitch in together. When it was hay season, not only were David's grandparents in the hay field, but so were all the uncles and cousins. It was a family affair.
When it came to hunting season, now THAT was a serious deal! Still is. All the relatives (cousins, uncles, grandparents) would gather together for the big hunt. Then they'd gather back together to eat. Then hit the woods again to hunt some more.
Sometime after we got married, the guys started camping out at a cabin that belonged to their Uncle Leon... which is when my boys began camping. Leon later sold the property that his cabin was on and the guys had to find an alternate arrangement... because it just ain't huntin' without the campin' part.
For a couple years, they camped on our property in a goose-neck trailer. One year, it rained all night and they got soaked and nearly froze, so Dave decided it was time to do something different. He set his sights on some pine trees on our property that his mother always wanted him to build our house with and began forming a plan. Some time later, he told me he was going to build a cabin ... and to be honest I didn't believe him, because ... well ... Dave doesn't build anything.
But, he took his plan and got started on our little cabin in the woods. We had no electricity and no running water. He laid some rock pillars to start a foundation, used his chainsaw to cut the trees and hauled them to his cousin's (who had a band saw mill). He lifted and laid log after log until they were all set in place. When it was time for the rafters, he enlisted help. So like in so many of his other life experiences, his family jumped in to help. His cousins, Jack and Randy, and his Uncle Jim all pitched in.
Building the cabin in 2000
David in his cabin (this picture reminds me of Noah and his ark)
Cousin Jack - always helping
The guys at work
Uncle Jim and Cousin Randy
Just look how small my "baby" was back then!! He's almost 20 years old now.
The cabin today
There's nothing like an old metal roof! I love that the windows and the front door came from an old 1918 farm house. SWEET!
We have since added electricity, a refrigerator and stove, and even a TV set (which will be obsolete in February). Just before David's daddy died, we had a well drilled and we now have running water. But, don't get too excited, we don't have plumbing yet. There's just a sink with cold water, but believe me, that's much better than no water!
For other plumbing needs... you've got to use the outhouse!
Since I lived in a tent for a year and a half, I don't camp much.
Been there. Done that.
But, I'm certainly grateful that our boys have this place that brings them memories of special times with uncles, cousins, and their Daddy.
I may not have believed David back then, but I'm glad he stuck with his vision. The little cabin in the woods turned out just pretty cute!