Tuesday, September 11, 2012

our homestead: catching up at summer's end

The first official day of Autumn isn't for another two weeks and we've been experiencing our own version of the drought here in the Pacific Northwest. We haven't had rain in more than 50 days save for the quick nighttime downpour we had two evenings ago. Day after day, bright sun and clear blue skies. Regardless, I sense Autumn approaching. I see it in the leaves rolling across the roadway or blushing red in the trees, I feel it early in the crisp mornings when I curl up closer to my dogs and pull more blankets on, and I've started tasteing it via butternut squash and chanterelle mushrooms. Yes, it's summer's end. In recap, I feel rather satisfied by my summer. I spent time with loved ones including taking a girl's trip to Lake Chelan, swam, went camping at Coal Lake a few times, hiked a lot, grew fruits and vegetables and raised my first few clutches of ducks (and my chickens just started laying eggs), and worked farmers markets. I've been preparing for winter this past month- drying herbs and flowers for tea, freezing and canning our over abundance of tomatoes, cooking up apple pie filling with my sister-in-law. I never get enough done. I'll turn to this blog in winter to remember parts of the growing season. I never am able to post photos of everything, but at least I have a few glimpses. More writing about some life updates after the jump of photos...
1. Our little homestead
2. Magic, simply magic. Watching a duckling hatch.
3. These ducks were born this season.
4. Teddybear sunflower.
5. Italian white sunflowers.
6. Coal Lake.
7. My husband, Joe (left) and his goodfriend Nate (right) mountain trout fishing.
8. Banjo and Oswald exploring the mountain rock.
9. Working the Anacortes Farmers Market with Shannon.
10. Gathering herbs and flowers for winter teas.
11. My partners in crime this summer.

On to the updates. My husband and I might be moving from the Swan Slough. Not anytime soon, but possibly within a year. We made an offer on an affordably priced 2 acre plot of raw woodland near a small bass-fishing lake about 20 minutes north. Our offer was accepted, and we've been spending the past week and a half conducting a feasibility study to make sure we could live on the land before committing to the purchase. This is a huge step for our family as we've always talked about finding land and building a very small, energy-efficient home of our own. We thought we should look now since properties are priced so cheap. We don't own the land we're on at the Swan Slough, so we'll be moving towards ownership- which is both exciting and scary. If everything checks out with this property, I dream of building a little house with a woodland garden with walking paths and maybe a treehouse too. We want to have a clearing for a vegetable garden and greenhouse and a fenced-in duck oasis. I am definitely romanticising the possibility of being able to kayak whenever I please, as the lake is just a walking block or so from the property. We are still close to friends and family and in a good school district (perks!). Making a little home here will be a lot of work, but my husband and I look forward to the challenge. I am still considering whether or not I should start a new blog, or just rename this one. A lot of my past is in this blog, and I do plan to continue my baby-homesteading spirit to our new property. The topics might change. The name of the blog might change. But perhaps I should keep on writing here...*fingers crossed* that everything works out.
1. Our new road. The property touches this road from the subaru to where I'm standing.  
2. The property is heavily wooded with lots of ferns, mushrooms and old growth stumps.
3. I love this cedar grove. I imagine I'll make a woodland garden of bleeding hearts and hostas here.
4. The lake down the street.

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