“HOW TO” AND DIRECTORY OF SORTS
If we gave you a set of keys to get into the cabin, make sure you hang on to them. That’s your only set. If you get locked out, we aren’t coming to let you in. More than anything, make sure you put the keys back where you found them when you leave. We want this to be a place that everyone can enjoy.
Heating things up
Staying in the middle of the winter? You’ll want to get the place heated up as fast as possible. Turn up the infrared heaters in the basement and kitchen. Additionally, there are electric baseboard heaters in the living room and bathroom, and electric heaters in the walls of the kitchen and bedrooms. Fire em up! Next, make sure you get to work on making some roaring fires. Thats the ticket. (Fire tips are coming soon). **PRO-TIP** It’s best to have someone do a lap with the dust wand right when you get there to ensure that all the cobwebs are wiped out.
“This place keeps getting better!” Yup, we said the same thing. Here are a few notes to get this thing as great as it sounds.
- SAFETY FIRST! - The deck that the tub is resting on gets VERY slick when wet. It is a death trap! Be careful!
- How to turn it on - The hot tub is always on. However, when you arrive, it is on “Sleep Mode” to conserve energy. Make sure you turn the tub on immediately upon arrival to ensure it is at ideal temp when you decide to make the plunge.
- Temperature Change - To change the temperature on the tub, open the lid and find your way to the control panel (see photo below).
- Hit the temperature button (looks like a thermometer).
- Immediately hit the “Light” button after. This will bring you to the “Standard Setting” for max temp. When you get to the “Standard Setting” on the screen, it will look like “St”.
- Once the screen says “St” stop touching the controls for 5 seconds.
- At that time, touch the temperature button multiple times until the temp setting goes up to 103.
- Keeping it clean - As a guest, don’t worry about keeping the tub clean. We treat it when we come out to the property. However, if there is floating debris, the skimmer is in the big silver trough by the back door to cabin. If you open the tub and the water doesn’t look clean, the chemicals are in a white bucket located in the same silver trough. We recommend a little sprinkling of the “Shock” chemical. But seriously, don’t go crazy with this. Your skin will hate you.
- How to turn it off - It is very important that you remember to turn the hot tub off when you are done using it and when you leave the property. Much like turning it on, there are a few steps:
- Hit the temperature button (looks like a thermometer).
- Immediately hit the “Light” button after. This will bring you to the “Sleep Setting” for minimum temp. When you get to the “Sleep Setting” on the screen, it will say “SL”.
- Once the screen says “SL” stop touching the controls for 5 seconds.
- At that moment, touch the temperature button multiple times until the temp setting goes down to 80.
- Don’t forget to close the lid on the tub and latch it.
How to make a fire - Making a fire can be pretty simple if you know the right steps:
- Before you start building any fire, use the metal shovel and metal bucket (kept by the fireplace in the side concrete floor room) to shovel out the old ashes. Dump the ashes in the big outdoor fire pit.
- When a match is lit, the flame shoots upward. The hot blaze causes a draft, drawing fresh air from below and supplying the oxygen necessary for combustion. The [wood-burning] range simply makes use of this basic principle on a large scale.
- To start the fire, have on hand plenty of newspaper and small pieces of wood. A folded newspaper will not burn freely, but a few sheets, lightly twisted, make a good first layer. We should have fire starters available at each fireplace as well. Usually a half of a firestarter stick does the job. Light this at the bottom of the fireplace.
- On top, layer a moderate supply of kindling wood (small pieces), laid in loosely.
- Once you have a small fire going, add logs to create a bigger fire. Fireplace tongs are provided at each fireplace for safety when placing the logs.
Fire tips for the cabin stove: Once you have a fire going, close the door to the stove to keep the smoke from billowing out. Use the two knobs at the bottom of the door to regulate the amount of air that gets into the stove. The wider open the valves are the faster the fire will burn. This is good for when you are just starting your fire and trying to get bed of hot coals. As the day wears on, you’ll be able to close those valves over time to reduce the amount of oxygen and create a slower burning fire, thus burning less wood. **PRO-TIP** Make sure you turn on the blower to pump hot air off the stove. You can turn the blower on with the electric switch that is on the floor on the left side of the stove.
In the living room - This is the least efficient form of heat in the house. It burns wood fast and doesn’t put off a ton of heat. That said, it also gives the most atmospheric value. Use the tips above to build a nice fire in the hearth. When the fire is going, be sure to close the metal curtains to prevent any sparks form shooting out onto the rug (trust us, this happens). **Pro-Tip** Use the knob to turn the blower on for better heat circulation. Its located on the left hand side of the fire place near the mantel.
In the basement- This stove is a beast once it gets hot. It blows a ton of air and gets the basement roasting. That said, if you aren’t going to be using the basement much during your visit, there is no need to light a fire there. If you are sleeping down there, get a fire going and get it going early. Use the bottom door to pull out the the ash tray from past fires. You can dump this ash off the lower deck patio. Replace the ash tray and build your fire. Once you have a fire going, use the single valve knob on the bottom of the lower door to regulate the oxygen into the fire chamber. **Pro-Tip** Turn the blower on by plugging the white chord on the left side of the stove into the outlet.
The property included a few residents when we purchased it in 2015. The previous owner left his two cats on the property when he moved. We love having the cats on the property because they keep away the mice. That much is pretty awesome. However, we hate having the cats on the property because they meow a ton and it’s annoying. ABOVE ALL: DO NOT LET THE CATS IN THE HOUSE. It doesn’t matter how cold or hungry or pathetic they look, they are not allowed in. We do this to ensure the cabin is as non-allergenic as possible for guests. Additionally, the cats are survivors and can stay outside on their own. If you feel inclined, you can feed them some of your table scraps if your heart is being tugged at. But again, do not let them in.
Food and Booze
The Three Button Ranch is a place for sharing and building community. As such, we employ a “gentleman’s agreement” for all food and alcohol. If it’s there, it’s open for sharing, but we expect that you contribute to the bar if you are going to be taking from it. A great guest will leave the ranch with a better stocked bar than when they arrived.
How to get in - One of the two keys provided will unlock the side door to the barn. You can then open the sliding door from the inside by releasing both latches at each end.
How to turn the lights on - Once you get inside the barn, the light switches are on the right hand side (behind the door). These turn on the interior and exterior lights.
Freezer - There is a chest freezer in the barn to keep spare ice and food. Use it at your discretion. Sometimes if it hasn’t been opened in long periods of time, the lid sticks and you may need to use a key to pry it open.
Gator/Mower/Boat - We ask as our guest that you do not touch or try to use any of our work vehicles or toys. We’ve spent a ton of money on them and need them to be in top shape when we need them. We trust that you as our guest to respect this.
Closing Up - Make sure you slide the barn door closed and latch each end. Sometimes this takes two people. Turn the lights off and close the side door, locking it behind you. **Pro-Tip** If you left the barn open for a while, double check that the cats aren’t in there when you lock up. This has happened before on accident.
Tired of the woods? Need to stock up on some supplies or food? Here are a few places in downtown Vevay that we recommend. By the way, the locals say: “VEE-VEE” not “VEE-VAY”
Grocery - There are two grocery stores nearby. Both close early so be there by 7PM if you want to grab some food. Downtown Vevay has an IGA, CVS, and Dollar General that are all in the same complex on Main Street. If you are looking for a better cut of meat or produce, we recommend the “Dutch Discount” just north of the property. This small quaker village is pretty awesome.
Gas - Fuel stations are pretty easy to come by. There is a Shell gas station in downtown Vevay on Main Street as well as two other options on the way toward 71.
Bowling - If you are looking for some late night entertainment, we suggest “Strikers” the local bowling alley in downtown Vevay on Main Street. This small 5 lane alley is locally owned and boasts a 4AM liquor license AND a selection of 10 different flavors of jello shots. **PRO-TIP** Ask for a tour behind the lanes. The 70 year old technology is fascinating.
Liquor Store - If you were a fool and didn’t bring any brown sauce for your visit, drive into town and go to ‘Red’s’ on Main Street. They have a full selection of liquors and beer. Stock up next time.
Patron’s - If you don’t feel like cooking, this place is legit. Cheesy Mexican food at it’s finest. Just drive into downtown Vevay (on Ferry St, off of Main Street) for some of the biggest California burritos ever seen.
Shell’s - As if this tiny little town of Vevay didn’t have an amazing little diner! Shell’s has over 50 menu items and an impressive ice-cream bar. You’d be sad if you passed this up. You’ll find it on Main Street.
Granny’s Home Cooking - Ever wonder how Cracker Barrel got it’s start? Pretty sure it was this place. $3.50 gets you a long way and the biscuit appetizer is loaded with healthy things. Also on Main Street (are you seeing a trend here?). **PRO-TIP** This place is cash only.
Belterra - If a fine dining experience is what you are looking for, stop down at Belterra. They offer 3 different nice restaurants with free parking that are sure to fit the bill.
We have over 45 acres on the property with multiple trails, fields, a swimming hole and Plum Creek. Have a blast exploring and be sure to share anything you find with us.
Trails - The trails are all around the property for you to discover. In addition they are annotated by the dashed lines on the map. If you hike them all, feel free to create your own trail!
Fields - The fields are great for games and activities. We also encourage large groups to park in the fields when they arrive.
Swimming Hole - For the warm weather months, there is a big swimming hole down in the middle of Plum Creek that is about 8 feet deep and perfect to cool off in. Take any of the trials heading north down the hill and bear left when you get to the creek bed.
Plum Creek - The north and west sides of the property are lined by Plum Creek and can be found by hiking any of the northern facing trails. Its a great place to explore, swim, or skip rocks.
Garbage management is critical to the upkeep of the property. It’s a must that you remove all garbage from the cabin upon closing up for the weekend. As a guest, you can take your trash to the barn and put it in the two trash cans inside. If you accumulate a lot of trash during your stay and fill either of the trash cans up, please take the time to roll the trash can out to the roadside and place it next to the mailbox to be picked up.
Toiletries and Supplies
We try to make sure that the cabin is well stocked for our guests with cleaning supplies, toilet paper, fire starters, and paper towels. The last thing we want is for you to have to run into town to grab something simple. You can always find extras in the closet in the back room. That being said, if you are bringing a large group it might be a good to grab some toilet paper just in case.
The kitchen at Three Button Ranch is set to be able to accommodate large groups with minimal pre-planning. In addition to a full set of pots and pans, we have glassware, champagne glassware, cocktail glassware, flatware and place settings for 10 guests. There are a few spices on-site but we suggest bringing your own supply if you have anything special in mind. Appliances in the kitchen include an oven with electric range, microwave, and dishwasher. There is also a toaster oven, coffee pot, and crockpot in addition to a gas grill outside. Note that if the baseboard heater in the kitchen is turned on at the same time as the microwave, there is a risk that the fuse blows. If this happens, the fuse box is in the closet in the back room.
This is definitely one of the most accommodating cabins around. This one even has laundry. There are bottles of tide on the shelf in the bathroom and dryer sheets on top of the dryer. Feel free to use the washer and dryer at your discretion. **NOTE** The washing machine has some issues getting enough water into the clothes chamber and will display the message “nF” if that is the case. To hack this, just fill up a kettle of water and add it directly to the washing chamber.
THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT SECTION OF THE BOOK! It is critical that you follow all of these steps in closing down the property upon leaving. Please keep in mind that we don’t regularly have a cleaning lady out at the property so it’s appreciated if you take care of any cleaning needs that seem apparent.
Cleaning - Like we mentioned, there is no maid on duty. We ask that you please treat the cabin like it’s your own. Things like wiping the tables down, running the dish washer (and washing any dishes in the sink), and any other miscellaneous tidying are encouraged so that the place is ready for the next group.
Sheets/Towels - As you are getting ready to leave, make sure you strip the bed of your used sheets and wash and dry them with the towels you have used. We can fold them and put them back on the bed next time we are there.
Lock all the windows and doors - Make sure any windows that you opened are locked again and check every window in the house to make sure it is locked and secure. Additionally, close any blinds that are available and lock all of the doors to the cabin.
Turn off all of the heaters - Make sure all of the the baseboard heaters are off.
Turn off all of the fireplace blowers - Make sure all of the the fireplace blowers are turned all the way off.
**If you are staying during the winter:**
- Make sure to winterize the waterlines - Be sure to leave the cabinet doors open underneath all of the sinks so warm air can get into them. Make sure to drip all of the faucets in the building (both bathrooms and the kitchen) with both the hot AND cold water lines. A slow drip is plenty. If you have any questions on this, PLEASE call.
- Set the infrared heater boxes - There is one infrared heater box in the basement and one in the back room. Make sure they are on and set to “Auto” and the temperature setting is set on “50 degrees.” Make sure the heaters are placed in the middle of the room on the concrete floors with no obstructions around them. These are to stay on after you leave to ensure the cabin stays above freezing temperatures.
- On your way out, close the bedroom door -The last thing you should do when walking out the door for the final time, make sure you close the door to the bedroom behind you with the two sets of bunk beds. This will ensure the kitchen stays warmer with the infrared heaters when you leave.
Empty the Fridge- There will be times when the cabin isn’t used for a week or two. The worst thing you can do is leave opened or perishable food behind. While it seems wasteful, please make sure you pitch anything that is perishable or opened when you leave.
Throw away any food that is opened - Like the fridge, any bags of chips, cookies or anything with a broken seal that cannot be zipped shut needs to be thrown away. This will help keep the bugs and mice away from the home.
Take the trash out of the house - Do a lap around the space when closing up and make sure all trash cans are empty and the kitchen garbage is taken out. You can dump all of this in the trash cans in the barn. If you fill a barn trash can, please be sure to take it out to the street for pickup.
Floors - There is no need mop the floors unless you made a big mess. However we appreciate a quick sweep of the floors before you leave. A broom is located in the closet of the back room.