Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Little House Out Back

I have posted before with a passing mention of our outhouse. I am sure that most of the baby boomers that are reading this post have had at least a brief encounter with an outhouse at some time in their lives. I know J.D. and I have. I remember one that was in the middle of a cow pasture behind my sister's house when I was about 9 years old. It was in fact thier toilet facilities and if you needed to use it some time in the night you wanted to be sure to take the flash light with you. Nothing is worse than stepping on a still moist cow patty in the middle of the night. (As a child I never wore shoes in the summer unless we were going to town).

This is a picture of our little house out back. It isn't the smelly, fly and bug infested outhouse of days gone by. We do have a problem with wasps though, but sooner or later we will find a solution to that. Ours is a compost out house. For those that are interested in how this works Click Here . This web site pretty much explains it all.

We have had so much fun with this little house. When these Yankee younguns came to visit the first time after we moved in, we told them that if they needed to use the toilet while they were here this is where they needed to go, because we didn't have any indoor facilities. Those three granddaughters were all in agreement, "If that was the case they wouldn't be staying long!" Our Rebel friends and family that have visited are eager to check it out and very surprised to find a framed painting on the wall, a window complete with a sun catcher and a pegboard with dried lavender and eucalyptus hanging from it.

They are equally surprised to find a shelf holding a pitcher and wash bowl, a mirror on the wall and hand towels hanging from a towel bar.

Not to forget mentioning the little chair just inside the door with a vintage fingertip towel, a bowl of pot pourri and a little outhouse painting I picked up at a flea market.
There's no waiting in line here either, it's a two seater.

That Little House Out Back

There's been a lot of landmarks
victimized by passing years.
For one, though nearly obsolete,
there's been no rash of tears.

It played its part in history
And was a friend in need
To all mankind, both rich and poor
Who did his daily deed.
For an endangered species
There has been a lack,
To save it for posterity~
That little house out back.

Now some were built with just one seat,
And others three or four
Of different sizes. Some for kids
Were built close to the floor.

It was a place to smoke or think,
Or dream at close of day,
While looking through the catalog
At what was on display.

But icy winds of winter that
Would whistle through a crack,
Discouraged one to loiter
In that little house out back.

They were all alike in some respect,
Yet differed one and all,
Construction didn't matter much
At times when nature'd call.

Though some were fancy,
Some were plain,
Some painted red or white,
All had a well ~ used beaten trail
That led there day or night.

Though some were open to the wind,
Of privacy a lack,
It served its usefull purpose ~ it did
That little house out back
Preserved now in museums,
You will find there on display,
The artifacts of pioneers,
Used in an early day.

From furniture to farming tools,
And rigs for thrashing grain,
And shoes of oxen pulling,
Covered wagons' cross the plain.

And logging gear,
And ancient locomotives on the track.
Yet, how often have we seen preserved,
That little house out back?

~Author Unknown

Rules of the Privy
  • Parking Limit:
    two minutes on holidays,
    seven minutes in summer,
    twelve minutes in winter.
  • Men: raise seat if not sitting.
  • Smokers and left-handers sit to the left.
  • Refill catalog and corncob box when empty.
  • Do not comment on other occupants' eating habits.
  • Use only one seat at a time (except on New Year's Eve).
  • Do not walk on seats.
  • Not responsible for any newspapers or books left here.
  • Keep your shoes on.
  • No drinking or gambling.
  • Don't shoot animals in privy.
  • Please observe our four-page limit.
  • Don't discuss your condition with other occupants.
  • No fighting.
  • Waiting must be done outside if full.
  • Taco, refried beans, sauerkraut, and herring eaters, use neighbors' privy.
  • Knock once to determine if occupied.
  • Knock twice for emergency.
  • And if you hear someone running on the path,
    get out quickly.


Mike Golch said...

works for me.
Hugs and God's Blessings. mike g. saod that.

Lib said...

I was raised in a house with a path.Oh my, your rich you have a 2
It is cute.
Lime works great! lol
We sure are spoiled these days huh? I reflect back on my childhood and realize just how Blessed I am!
Hope you have a great wk.

farmlady said...

What a wonderful outhouse!!You should get an award or something for this. It's the dream outhouse; the cream de la cream of outhouses.

I want one.

Linds said...

I remember visiting an elderly aunt on a farm in Norfolk in the 1960's and being told to "go down the garden path". I had never seen one before! In Africa we had plumbing! She also had a water pump in her kitchen to draw water from the well under the house. As a kid I was completely fascinated. She also had heaystacks and we had to climb around to collect the eggs - now that was wonderful!

Linds said...

Haystacks. Of course.

BittersweetPunkin said...

I love your outhouse!! I have been in 2 or 3 or so in my time...LOL.
I wish I had one in my back yard, love how sweet you decorated it!!

Juli said...

That is, without a doubt, the finest outhouse I've ever seen. and, oddly enough, I've seen quite a few :)

Sage Gray said...

wish that my relitives and friends had outhouses as nice as yours. But thats West Virginia hillbillies for you. When I was a little kid we had one and then all the relitives in Texas and colorado had them. Now it just a few that don't have indoor plumbing thank goodness.

violetlady said...

How interesting. It is actually quite charming. Not sure about the two seater, though!

julia said...

i looked at that page you referenced about composting outhouses--that is a big commitment! But, it is a natural and reDOable resource, eh? lol

Mary said...


I enjoyed this post. Yes, the little shack outback is obsolete, except in the memories of those who used one.

The poem is great and I enjoyed my visit. Thanks for the invitation.