A Cleanup Day

 Posted by at 12:59 am  Nick's Blog
Dec 212023

Yesterday, our son Travis spent the day helping me clean up some of the downed trees and limbs from last summer’s big storm. It’s a project we’ve been wanting to get to and finally had the time to tackle. Between our two Stihl chainsaws and the Kawasaki Mule and DK2 wood chipper, we were well equipped for the job.

The first step was to cut the smaller limbs and branches off a couple of trees on one side of the property and feed them into the wood chipper. Travis and I were both surprised at the size of limbs the chipper would take on. It gobbled right down anything up to about four inches in diameter. The five or six-inch ones took a little more work, and occasionally it would kick back a piece, so I had to be careful. But by the time we finished in one area, we had a big pile of wood chips that Terry can use in her gardens next spring.

We cut the limbs and trunks that were too big to chip into smaller sections and stacked them to be dealt with at a later date.

Once those two big trees were dealt with, we moved to the perimeter road on the other side of the property, which was blocked in three places. The downed trees and limbs had kept me from getting in with my Kubota tractor and bush hog, and it was pretty well overgrown. Travis waded into it and started cutting and clearing while I fed what he was cutting up into the chipper.

By late afternoon, we realized we would not get it all chipped up, so instead he concentrated on cutting the limbs and trunks up, and then we used the winch on the Mule to drag them out of the way. I’ve still got a lot of limbs and branches over there to chip up, but by the time we quit, as the sun was getting low in the sky, at least we had that perimeter road clear enough that we could drive the length of it in the Mule.

When we knocked off, we were both tired and sore, and I told Travis I was looking forward to soaking in the hot tub and trying to work some kinks out that I had developed during the day. Terry took this picture of him looking like the grizzled lumberjacks I used to know in my days publishing newspapers on the Pacific Northwest coast.

The next step will be to hook the bush hog onto the tractor and get that road mowed and in shape. Then I will chip up the piles of limbs that we have left. But that will have to wait a while, because both Judy and Roberta got the last chapters of Jackpot, my new John Lee Quarrels book, proofread and back to me. Today I will make their changes, then print the complete book out for Terry to do a final proofreading before it’s ready to publish. It’s been a long time coming and I’m looking forward to getting it out there.

It’s Thursday, so it’s time for a new Free Drawing. This week’s prize is an audiobook of Big Lake, the first book in my Big Lake mystery series and the book that launched my career as an author. When an armored car hijacking leaves two men dead, Arizona Sheriff Jim Weber takes the crime personally, because one of the dead men is his brother-in-law. His hunt for the killers leads him into a world of sordid sex, deceit, and violence, with a suspect list that includes jilted women, a family of anti-government survivalists, and the beautiful wife of the richest man in town. With a plot that has more twists and turns than an Arizona mountain road, a cast of characters you won’t soon forget, and a shocking ending that shakes the town of Big Lake to its very foundation.

To enter, click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name (first and last) in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening. Note: Due to the high shipping cost of printed books and Amazon restrictions on e-books to foreign countries, only entries with US addresses and e-mail addresses are allowed. After 90 days, unclaimed prizes revert back to the drawing pool for a future contest.

And finally, here’s a chuckle to start your day from the collection of funny signs we see in our travels and that our readers share with us.

Thought For The Day – I’d rather regret the things I did than the things I didn’t do.

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

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