Vela Creations

Vela Creations is an in-depth resource for off grid living. The site documents our research and experiences, hoping that they might help others interested in pursuing this lifestyle. This blog is designed to document our day to day experiences as we build our new, sustainable homestead. If you are interested in seeing more photos and videos, we have a flickr account at the following url:

Friday, April 20, 2018


My dad came for two weeks, and my sister came for four days during that time. It was lovely seeing them both.

Before they came, they asked what kind of clothes they'd need. I'd informed them that we were pretty much into just shorts weather. Of course, that meant it was time for a random little cold front to blow in, dropping the temperatures from the 80s to 40!!! Oh well, as people in these parts keep telling us, "If you don't like the weather in East Texas, wait 10 minutes and it'll change".

I think the highlight for my sister was definitely the animals; she has a particular soft spot for all little critters. One of Vickie's cows had a HUGE calf. He was born so big that he came out like a one month old, and ended up having to be bottle-fed. I think Sharon wondered if she'd be able to fit him in her carry-on!

If I had to guess what my dad liked most, it would probably be the night trips we took on the 4x4. He'd shine the spotlight to catch the glow of eyes in the darkness. We'd then race over to see what it was. We saw possum, deer, armadillo, skunk (our puppy, Candy, got sprayed for the first time!), and owls. There were several species we didn't get to see, but maybe next time.

The boys loved having them both here. It was the best birthday present for Leo, who turned 10 on April 11th. Now, however, all our guests are gone and we have to get back to work! We miss them.

For family who want to see more pics, you can go to flickr.

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Family 2018

Wednesday, April 11, 2018


Micro-greens is an intensive form of growing greens. You plant a bunch of seeds in a tray with some soil, and then eat them shortly after they've sprouted. They are extremely nutrient dens, and much tastier than regular greens.

We've now done two batches and are on our third. The first two times we planted sunflowers, radish, and peas. We are now trying out some kale and arugula as well.

The greens from the photo were left a little too long (we were just too busy!), and the flavor wasn't as good, but still a great success.

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Monday, April 9, 2018

Garden irrigation

When we only had a couple of rows planted, watering by hand with a hose wasn't such a big deal. However, now that two thirds of the 5000 square foot area is planted, it had become a chore.

So, we installed an irrigation system. The garden is now split into four zones. The first one, which consists of three rows at the top and three at the bottom, is made up of drip lines. These are for the plants that prefer not to be watered from above (like squash, cucumber, tomatoes). The other three zones, with six rows each, have sprinklers.

Everything is set on a timer, so that they come on, one after the other, in the early morning.

We have also started putting mycelium and mulch in the paths, so that as the "wasted" space gets water, it will produce mushrooms.

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Garden irrigation

Saturday, April 7, 2018


It was a really fun Easter. We had Abe's mom and my dad here, which was reason enough for the boys to be ecstatic.


However, they also had a great Easter egg hunt (it took them a long time to find all the eggs and they were only hidden in the area right around the house), AND they got a fantastic new toy from my dad... a trampoline!

They bounced most of the day and ended up absolutely exhausted. Still, they really love it. In fact, it is the first thing they have done every day after school, once they've finished their homework and fed the animals. They bounce and bounce, and are now starting to do some basic somersaults. Can't wait to see what they can do in a year!

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Thursday, April 5, 2018

Cabin’s First Visitor

It's been crazy busy here for the past couple of weeks, so I haven't had much time to blog. But now that things have calmed down and we can relax a little, I'm back!

One of the main reasons we've had so much to do is that, aside from spring gardening and other normal homesteading chores, we have been trying to get the cabin ready for its first guest, my dad. Even putting in long hours, we didn't get it anywhere near finished, but at least it works as a basic bedroom.


We had thought we'd be able to hang all the drywall in time, but it just didn't work out that way. Still, we got all the ceilings up and the bedroom walls. Once my dad leaves, we'll finish the living room and bathroom, and then we'll have to tape and mud it all, followed by painting and trim :(


We dug a trench from the electric pole to the cabin, for the mains wire and its conduit. We then wired up the breaker box inside the cabin, as well as all the lights and fans, and the plugs in the bedroom. The bedroom may not be finished out completely, but at least there's lights and plugs.


We have the bathroom plumbing in the walls done. It is ready for a shower, toilet, sink, and hot water heater. The grey water vent is finished, but the drain just goes through the floor for now, not out to the garden bed it will eventually water. We'll finish it all out once the drywall is done in that room.

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Cabin’s First Visitor

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Cabin insulation

We have been putting insulation up in the cabin, and it is almost completely done now.

We have to do the plumbing in the bathroom, and then we'll start on sheetrock.

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Cabin insulation

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