Saturday, March 1, 2008


This has turned out to be quite a project. We have been here for a week now and have only moved our Jeep once - every other day we have been conpletely focused on our oven.

This morning we laid the firebrick on the top of the foundation, forming the floor and hearth of the oven. We are thrilled with the results - flat and level in all directions; the joints between the bricks are almost unnoticeable. We could hardly tear ourselves away - we are all so amazed!

I said yesterday that today would be MUD day, and it was. Once the bricks were in place, we turned our efforts to the huge pile of clay we had collected. One 5-gallon bucket load at a time, we mixed the clay with water in a wheelbarrow, stirring and squishing it with our hands to find and remove all the lumps and rocks.

Here is my cousin, "Dances in Mud". After we have finished 13 wheelbarrow loads (we made one extra "just in case"), Rosanna put on her boots to stomp all the separate batches into one big blob of clay. Well, her 100 pounds were no match for the stickiness of our clay - Odel and I had to pull her out, one leg at a time!

Finally, here is our worksite at the end of Day 5. The mud is completed and securely wrapped in the silver tarp in the foreground. The hearth and foundation are covered with a vinyl tablecloth. There were kitty pawprints all over the top sand layer of the foundation this morning; between animals and the breeze that started today, we didn't want to take any chances.

We are now READY TO BUILD. Stiff winds are forecast for tomorrow, however, so we may need to wait for an improvement in the weather... I feel like NASA trying to get the shuttle off the ground! Stay tuned.

1 comment:

  1. Ya'll do beautiful work. I'm going to plaster some on one of my outside walls-wanna come help? It'll be good practice.