Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Anyone want to mow?

Trick question!  There is nothing to mow!

But if you come for a visit, bring your gloves.  There is a forest to manage.  We've been taking down dead trees, piling brush, stacking wood, etc.  

This is what you see looking out our dining room window.  That little building is a sauna.  There is a wood stove with rocks surrounding it.  Built out of cedar.  It's fun to use.  Apparently my Finnish heritage is rich with sauna activities!  The Finns are huge sauna lovers.  There is a whole routine and rhythm to it.  10 minutes in at 150 degrees.  10 minute walk in the cold.  10 minutes in.  10 in the cold(or rolling in the snow).  Back and forth followed by a shower.  It's really good for your circulatory system and skin.  Who knew?

On the west side of our house.  There's this rocky, weedy hillside leading down into the main animal barnyard area.  It's a mess of old fencing, downed trees, and garbage.  

This is what happens if you attach fencing to a live tree.  See the 5 horizontal lines on the left picture?  Clara and I removed the fence, "rescuing the tree."  But it'll never grow as healthy as it could have and it's impossible to cut down safely.  Cut above the fence line and then push over the stump?

A shot of the barn yard.   It's too shady to grow anything.  We'll be harvesting most of these trees next spring when we log our acreage to let in the light.  Light sanitizes and is good for animals just like it is for people.  

This area is just outside the chicken coop but not within the previous owner's fencing.  I'm going to re-figure the fencing so that they'll have access to this green stuff.  Plus it's a bunch of weeds right next to my garden area.  I'd like them to keep it trimmed.  

This is what I see looking out my kitchen sink window.  It's beautiful yet I can't help but yearn for at least a square of soft-on-the-toes grass and a swing set.  

Things That Grow

Our driveway, part of it.  And my almost 6 years old Clara.  : )  This is a sliver of the forest that we get to care for.  That's been a learning adventure that'll get its own post.  

Honeysuckle counting

Anyone know what this is?  The yellowish foliage with the bright blueish three petal flowers is striking.  It's been fun to watch things pop up.  I still have a whole summer to see what's been planted out there!

A lovely mix of columbines

The alliums are beginning to fade in the lower right.  They're a special gift to me.  It was one plant I was sad to leave in Idaho Falls.  In fact, I tried to lift a bulb and bring it with in a deep container.  It didn't grow this spring though.  Glad to have new ones to enjoy!

There are three tiers of planting space on the east side of our house, completely surrounded by mature forest.  I've been pruning the lower branches on the trees to let in as much light as possible.  There are strawberries, elderberries, and raspberries.  The kids have helped me add peas and a whole bunch of roots-carrots, parsnips, beets, radishes.  

The one plant I let myself buy this spring.  Happy petunias.  I started some from seed but they won't be blooming for a few more weeks.  

Lilacs-Jenny and I got to see a flock of swallow tail butterflies dancing with the lilacs a few weeks ago.  

ASPARAGUS!  Another personal gift to my soul.  If you know about asparagus, you know it takes at least 3 years from planting seeds(2 from crowns) to be able to harvest.  I was just about to be able to harvest my first in Idaho Falls.  To walk in to a mature, well producing asparagus patch is a treat.  They are pictured below in the middle right.  They grow fern-like fronds after you're done picking for the season.  


to our homestead!

  This is how we watch movies without a couch!  
They're laying on a nest of every blanket and pillow we have.  

Triple decker bunk!  The loft bed is built in and our bunks fit beautifully underneath making the best kid room.  The cute wood cook stove has to go unfortunately.  It's not safe with the beds so close.  No buyers from Craigslist yet...