Returning my attention to the clay…

I’m busting at the seams this morning with excitement and hope and plans. Let me tell you why. Yesterday at our local Tractor Supply I pawed through the $5 book bin, as I often do. I came across “the joy of hobby farming” by Michael and Audrey Levatino. Hobby farming, sustainable living and homesteading books are something that I have somewhat of a collection of. (And the old timer say we young folks don’t collect anything!)

I posted this on facebook this morning (I tried to embed my post, but it appears that that’s not supported bywordpress.com)

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just so you know I’m not making up fluff for a very neglected blog. 😉

So here’s the thing. Business took off for me this spring. I’m still working full time as well, and will be for some time, but it’s taken off just enough that my back yard looks pretty awful:

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General view of the garden which kinda blends in with the grass, and the perennial bed (left) that’s all green, no flowers.

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cucumbers planted in a hanging pot that’s now set on the ground. Also, can never give it enough water. A few tiny cukes on it.

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Left to right, bell peppers, broccoli, cabbage, green beans, and grass, lots and lots of grass.

A tumbling tomato plant that has tumbled itself into death, no amount of water would keep this thing alive.

A tumbling tomato plant that has tumbled itself into death, no amount of water would keep this thing alive.

We waffled about whether or not to plant the garden at all this year. Our house has been on the market for a year and it’ only shown twice, but with my luck, we’d plant a garden and get it to June 30th, and get a contract, leaving all of the vegies for the new owners. Well apparently my luck has turned. No offers, no contracts, we have some veggies.

I’ve harvested green beans twice now and ate them immediately….along with some tiny broccoli florets. A few of the cabbage plants are heading up nicely, and we’ve had a steady supply of small bell peppers. My daughter says they are great in her salad, I thought they tasted watery and plain. The red cabbage looks like hell, and we have miscellaneous corn, squash and tomatoes popping up from last year.

So I snuggled up this morning with the new book, and was instantly just FIRED UP. Here’s the thing. I have always wanted to buy an old farm. In fact, I used to have one, but life gets in the way and a divorce separated me from my dream. Here I am, clawing my way back to it.

The land we have purchased is 3.25 acres of hills, woods, and clay. No pasture (but we could create some) and LOTS of water. This book just made me nostalgic for my old farm, and how that’s really what I’d prefer to be doing (old barns and outbuildings, and plenty of flat grassy area all ready to use) but it is what it is, and I will have to work with the 3.25 acres for now. I feel fortunate that we were able to purchase it and if the house never sells, we can still use the land for growing/raising food, it’s literally 5 minutes from our house.

I started out with great intentions here on this blog, outling types of plants etc., but I failed, miserably, flopped on my farmer face, but you know what? That’s ok. Life happens, people change, plans fly out the window, you regroup, refocus, and step out again.

I’m back. I hope you’re still with me.

Marie

I took a walk….

I’m a freaking genius in my mind, when I’m out walking in nature. I’m a grade A writer, an entertainer, a freaking genius I tell ya.

I cranked out poems:

Whispery caked leaves
Ghostly arching trees
Their castoffs, littering the ground
Nature’s wrath was here

I wrote blog post after blog post, and solved all of my problems. Yep. I did that…..but let me tell you about my walk. It was lovely….it was an adventure!

I went walking at the North Springfield Dam. During post-Irene the water was 30-40 feet up the trees around the entire basin. The trail starts out with a gentle slope down towards a very steep embankment. Next comes a very gradual increase in grade for quite a distance followed by some shorter steeper hills. EVentually you come to the airport runway. The grass is thick and lush and resembles beach walking. At the end of the runway is another down hill into the ghostly, gray, dusty, slippery woods. I walked about 33 minutes out before I turned around, lest I end up in the next town over and have to call my husband for a ride back to my car. I met some horses on the way out and warned them of the slick half-dry mud beyond, they thanked me for the heads up. I giggled whilst imagining 6 equestrians on their asses as their mounts performed involuntary splits. The giggles fueled me to push it a little bit, so I ran up the next hill. I walked a little ways, set my water down and really stretched my back (gets super tight when I’m walking) and then ran the rest of the distance of the runway and told myself I would stop when I got to the bridge. Well I guess my body didn’t get the memo that we were aiming for the bridge, and she kept stopping on me. We eventually came to an understanding and ran to the bridge. I walked down the next two hills, took my time….then ran the next straightaway and up the really steep embankment. I plodded (yeah, that’s a good word) the rest of the way out. I was tired and red faced when I got back to my car….where I stood/sat in the parking lot and stretched my quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.
I did some praying out there, if you can call it that. I talked to the divine in my head…mostly thanking him/her for the ability to be able to enjoy such quiet, beautiful natural places. I didn’t spend anytime thinking about the things I want and don’t have…I heard a song on VPR on the way home (something celtic I think) about not wishing for the things that you think you need. Things have been pretty tough for us lately…we can’t always pay everything on time, but we do pay the bills and we do eat, and I do get to tie up last years running shoes and just get out there and soak up some sun and fresh air, crinkling leaves, and a few mosquitos too. I love my life.