Seriously Needed Help!

May 1, 2012

(As a preface, my mother [with the dogged patience of her webmaster, my sister] has launched a really fabulous blog on my behalf – http://helptinaborja.blogspot.com/. Please visit, subscribe for updates, check the calendar for upcoming fundraising events, and even make a donation if you choose. So you know, I will continue to post on Caring Bridge, Facebook, and, for really important stuff – like the message that follows – via email blasts.)

So, JOB #1 right now is clearing my property in Acres Home (Tidwell at Shepherd). With limited funds, I am putting the word out on everything we need/want (that I can think of, anyway) to get the job done as expeditiously as possible. Without question, not everyone will be able to help and many of you may THINK you cannot help. But, if you READ THE LIST anyway and THINK CREATIVELY, there may be contacts, resources, materials, or equipment/tools you can pitch in with. And with several well-gloved hands – we can do this!

Please look at the list closely – and, like I said before, think CREATIVELY! You may not personally have what I need, but you may know someone who does. Are you willing to call in a favor for a mother of two with brain cancer? (Yes, I just pulled the C-sympathy card!)

PEOPLE

Brainpower. I need help making this list! I’ve never cleared a lot before and am having to do a ton of anticipatory guessing. If you think of something, please let us know (who to contact at the end of this message).

Muscle. Looking at the weekend of May 12 and 13. Volunteers for the full weekend, one day or the other, a morning or afternoon, whatever you can spare, welcome. A constant supply of food, water, and Gatorade guaranteed! (In the interest of full disclosure, the lot is fully overgrown and, if my experience last spring was any indication, it has its fair share of poison ivy or poison oak. The good news is that I’ve never seen a snake [knock on wood] – just a bunny. Long sleeves, long pants, boots, and gloves a must. Safety goggles, bandanas, and hats would not be overkill!)

Guardian(s). Need someone not too far away with a place to safely (i.e. behind a locked gate) park a truck or two full of equipment and tools overnight on Saturday. Even better, someone with a lockable panel van to take everything home on Saturday to return Sunday AM.

EQUIPMENT/TOOLS

One very large roll-off container. Priced these through Waste Management and looking at $500 and up. Would love to save some money here if anyone has a contact or alternative idea (that doesn’t include multiple pick-up truck runs to the dump).

One of those landscaping chipper trucks. You know, the ones that shred all the limbs and foliage? This one may be a long shot but I’ll never know if I don’t ask!

One skid steer. This is like a mini bulldozer – very mini. Despite its size however, it will make work progress twice as fast. They can be rented but not sure about the details of doing so (price, delivery, pick up, etc.) or how we would secure the thing overnight.

Gas Tillers. The more the merrier. Want to get as much of this from the roots as possible.

Gas Chainsaws. Not planning to do all the tree work, but maybe a couple. In addition, there are some heavy vines that will be MUCH easier to deal with if we have a chainsaw or two.

Wheelbarrows/Carts. We will need some way for workers to haul debris from the lot to the roll-off container on the street (lot is 420 feet deep!)

Machetes/Hoes. And all other ‘garden’ tools you find essential!

POST CLEARING

Crushed concrete. I would happily volunteer to be the dumping ground for 5,000 to 20,000 square feet of crushed concrete!

Fencing. Chain link, wood, iron, tin. Whatever works and is cheap! Will pay extra for an automatic gate!

A Home. Preferably a wood frame house (easier to move) or, depending on size, two. Will also consider a refurbished double wide, a couple of single wides, an Arabian tent (but only if it has central AC and a magic carpet), a big red barn… You get the idea. Something that will be quicker, cheaper, and require less permitting than building from scratch.

My personal super-hero sister, Teresa, will take your emailed offers of advice and assistance. We will proceed from there! tvandeusen@gmail.com.

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