Tuesday, November 25, 2008

First snow

We had the first snowfall of the season for Aunt Jean and Uncle Gary's drive out to see us. It was treacherous driving, but very pretty. Here's a photo from our back deck. You can see my wooden puffin hanging out in the snow. He's very happy that summer is over...winter is more his style.

Aunt Jean and Uncle Gary came to visit

We were delighted to have Aunt Jean and Uncle Gary visiting this past weekend. The dogs loved having them around (Mattie clearly has a special fondness for Uncle Gary). We ate lots, played a great game of dominoes, and had plenty of time to visit and show them our acerage. The weather was poor for their drive out, but it was much better for the journey home (thank goodness!). We had such a nice time! We're excited to have them come back again soon!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Progress so far/ I need a Welder

Last time I posted some pictures of the Jeep it looked something like this.

With some help from Ryan (hopefully his wounds have healed), we tore the jeep down to its frame. Since then I have been working the frame with a wire wheel on my angle grinder and painting the areas that are done.

This also gave me the opportunity to get a really good look at the underside of the body. Well, its not as great as I thought. Originally I was going to do as little as possible to the body because I thought that it was in decent shape. As you can see from the pictures I think that I need a welder. The hat channels are in pretty bad shape. I don't think that I need a new floor (we will see after I clean it up some more) but the Hat channels really need to be replaced.

Lastly here are some pictures of the donor CJ-3A that I bought for the drive train parts. Notice the GPW head that is on the engine. Some previous owner didn't like the fact that Ford stamped the head with there logo so the jerk ground it off. Would have been neat if it was still there (and possible worth something to a early GPW restorer).

My goal is to finish the frame and then work on the differentials, transfer case, and transmission this winter. Hopefully having them done by this spring. This should light a fire under another Jeep fanatic that I know of.

Monday, November 10, 2008


With snow falling this fast weekend, fall and harvest time is officially over. In the last few days the final fields around are house were harvested and tilled. It makes everything feel really empty (and more windy). Because this was our first year in Iowa, we kinda got attached to the corn, so we were sad to see it go. At least we know it will be back next year!

Visiting Seth and Michelle

I had a few days off between jobs, so I took the opportunity to drive to Ohio to see Seth, Michelle, the kids, and Mom and Dad (who also happened to be visiting). The timing was perfect! We had lots and lots of fun. James, Harmony, and Gabrielle are even cuter than I remember...though I haven't seen them since visiting Japan. They PCS'ed to Ohio a few months ago so Seth could work on his Master's at Wright-Patterson AFB.

The big event of the weekend was James going fishing with his Dad and Grandpa. Here he is waiting patiently to go with his tackle box. (Grandpa bought him a new tackle box and fishing pole for the occasion!) Grandpa and James heading out the door!
Gabrielle hanging out with Grandma after the boys left.
While the guys were fishing the girls went to the mall shopping! Harmony was being cute in the food court.
That night (after naps for almost everyone) we celebrated Harmony's third birthday with an ice cream cake and presents. Happy Birthday Harmony! Seth and me at the party. Can you tell that we're twins?
Grandpa reads a bedtime story about a tractor to James and Harmony.
A final group photo. See you again soon! Thanks for a super fun weekend!

Hope's New Job

I start a new job tomorrow (Tuesday) with Buena Vista University. I'll be the Academic Advisor for their Business Program in Fort Dodge. This position should be a much better fit for me, so I'm really excited!

Mattie and Brian's Pheasant Hunt

Sorry this photos are so late being posted. Two weeks ago (okay, maybe three), Brian and I went down to visit Aunt Jean and Uncle Gary in SE Iowa so Brian could do some pheasant hunting with Mattie. Although the hunting wasn't very successful (they only got one bird), we had a great time. I did lots of shopping with Aunt Jean while the boys were out with the dogs.

Here's Brian with Uncle Gary.

Here's Brian with Brian (a fellow hunter from Boston) with Mattie and the one pheasant of the day.Mattie with the bird. Uncle Gary followed by Mattie and one of his dogs. We also found some time to shot clay pigeons. I haven't had the opportunity to shoot clays since college, so it was a lot of fun!
Here's Uncle Gary. Turns out that Brian's a really good shot....I'm a little rusty.
We (and the dogs) had a great weekend!