Thursday, December 31, 2009

So starts the New Year


Today starts a New Year. It means new goals, new hopes and new beginnings. If you live in this house it means lots of new adventures as well.

This year I will raise goats. I plan on milking them to provide my own cheese, butter and soap. I’m not sure how the dogs are going to like having them around but I think that the goats will be able to hold their own.

This year I will raise chickens. I will even learn the dreaded way in which to turn some of them into a nice warm dinner for my family. I will wait and see which ones piss me off before choosing who goes into the pot… Ari has stated she will “move out when (I) bring the first chicken home". Rotten kid! She might go in the pot first.

This year I will make things from scratch such as laundry soap. I will make things last longer such as my husbands gloves and temper (his not mine!) I will reuse everything I can like juice bottles for storage and table scrapes for our new compost (have I mentioned how much I miss my compost?).

I feel I must state that I do not choose to do these things because I am "going green". I do them because they are the right things to do. I believe that if I don't start now, it will be harder in the future when it will be required (and rest assured it will…). More on this at a future date.

As I have also stated before I am not a patient person. I figure I must learn this as a way of life while I can instead of when I must. I don't do well when I feel someone is forcing my hand

Monday, December 21, 2009

The Only House on the Block with Eight Graves Instead of Christmas Lights


Don has his compost and now he is excited. One thing off his list (Don is a list maker. If it’s not on his list it doesn’t happen!) So what does he do next? Orders 15 tons of dirt to be dropped off in the driveway! It is close to the Christmas season and I am thinking of beautiful lights on the house and in the trees and now I have all this dirt in my driveway instead. He smiles and says, "Don't worry Pinkie (his pet name for me. I’m not sure what I think of that one since he considers himself the brain) I know what I am doing." Again I am being tested with patience! So I grin and bear it and sloooowly back away. He looks so happy standing on top of his mountain of dirt like a child who got what he wanted on Christmas morning.

He is building our garden beds now. Once Don gets something in his head it is hard to deter him. Now I do have to give him credit; he did stop all the water from coming into the basement by building up the yard. But mud, three dogs, and four teens with newly cleaned light carpets doesn't mix well.

So with hired help from my brother and $300 worth of materials he puts up a large gate and starts piling the dirt where our garden will be. It is so close to Christmas and instead of lights on the house I now have what look like graves in the yard. Ohhh my, the family should love it!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

How The Dream Began


I miss our old compost. It was amazing stuff! Don and I had always wanted to be gardeners but never really accomplished much. A few tomatoes here, a strawberry the birds missed there, but nothing to write about. However we both knew that all gardeners had one thing in common: compost!

One time I (innocently) added cut up potatoes to the compost pile. A couple of months later Don pulled out some giant weed looking things and attached to the ends were potatoes!! Our first crop! From that moment on I knew all we needed was some land.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Loving the View


I refuse to put up curtains in our bedroom. I love the view. I wake each day to look out and see the changes the seasons are bringing to our little piece of heaven. Now, I don’t want to confuse anyone into thinking that we own a lot of land we don’t. Yet…(I have been eyeing 6 acres to the west for some time now - just waiting for Don to be in the right mood…).

I knew this place would take some elbow grease to get going again. Just how much I wasn't prepared for. But with the dedication of amazing friends, an ex-husband (yes we are great friends, but more on that later), four exhausted teens and a very wonderful, patient husband we have a started to realize the diamond in the rough. We still have lots of changes to make but at least we have a start. We have made a few changes to our farm house…

New windows (ours were from 1940s), trimming trees, and hauling off all the trash. The fireplace is another thing we have working again is. Don seems to enjoy his weekly workout since he is the only one driven to get the wood ready. I guess I should learn patience but instead I had a rick of wood delivered. I couldn't wait any longer. Sweet guy he tries so hard (did I mention patience is something I am still working on?).

I love having a roaring fire going... Maybe too much according to Don. I started a really BIG one the other night... I didn't know flames could get that high! Ohhh pretty!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

One Down and Four to Go!






Ok...my (once again) sweetheart was sold, now for the really hard part: four teens to go!

I drove out to the country hearing all along that they are not moving! Ari and Lizzie were convinced they would be kept awake by cows and have to dodge snakes. They loved where we lived. They didn’t want to switch to new schools. The list went on and on and on…

As we passed some of the very nice newer developments with homes valued at half a million dollars some of the objections evaporated. Then we pulled into the drive of my dream home and my first born, my loving only son and eldest child whom I dearly love and adore says “Great Mom, we’re moving into the crack house of the neighborhood!”

So we open the door to this 100 year old farm house with all its party mess and step back. Just watching and waiting as room to room they go. Out on the property they wander, looking and checking things out. I hold my breath praying that each will see what I see. Please love this home... please...

Finally, one by one each gave the ok. Ari wasn't the happiest and her siblings had to talk her into it. She loves her friends and her old school you see. But they all agreed to move. Ari even staked a claim in one of the trees while Lizzie found an old tire swing and Ty counted the cash he could get from recycling all of the beer cans. KC had found her room upstairs and Don’s eyes glazed over at the two car garage (workshop in Don speak). I had my fireplace.

To make a long story somewhat shorter, I (with tons of help from my family and not just a few really close friends) got my house on the market in less then a week. The Lord then wrought another miracle and we managed to sell it in a day! That's right a single day. God blesses those who work hard I guess, because man we sure did. I thought my family would disown me while I was trying to get it all done but we did it. Lucky for me they let me come along.

Friday, December 4, 2009

How the Exile Becomes the Hero


I called my sweetheart so he could share in my excitement and it went downhill from there…

My husband Don is very stuck in his ways. He is a smart, good looking (as my editor he added that part) and sensible man. He does nothing on a whim. Everything is thought out and calculated. That is why he handles the money! I called him up as we were leaving the ‘find’ to share with him our good fortune!

He proceeds to tell me we aren't moving, deal with reality, I need to stop this day dreaming and he will talk to me later. Talk to me later. Ha! Not if I could help it! I was never talking to him again!! The couch wasn't far enough away in my opinion. I was so mad I think I actually turned red.

Don knows that when I am mad (a rare occurrence) the (best) safest thing to do is go into hiding for awhile. The best way (the coward) Don hides is to sleep. He crawled into the bed before I could lock the bedroom door and (banish) exile him to the couch. He was in the bed but too big for me to push him out. Not to mention the last thing I wanted to do was touch him.

With the attitude I had that night it was a good thing I had a church meeting to get ready for. I was getting ready and started talking to my dog Trooper. Trooper is my beautiful golden retriever (one of our three dogs) and my best listening buddy. I was telling him how much he would have loved his new home. He was sitting there listening to me. He is such a patient boy.

Well guess who was eavesdropping? Don dared to ask "So where is this place?" Oh, no you don't buddy! I am so not talking to you. I replied, "It's too late. I don't even want to share anything with you at this point!" To forgive is divine but at that moment in history I was having a hard time even thinking about that. Good thing I was headed to church!

He persisted and I finally shared the address with him as I smugly walked out of the house. I realized once I got to church that in my haste I had forgotten some keys that would be needed. Don could bring them but he was the last person I would call for help. As I tried to decide the best option (and best way to save face) I looked up.

There he was taking off his helmet. I just stood there looking at him. A mirage maybe? What was he smiling about? Didn't he realize the danger he was in? Arrogant to the danger, he continues to walk my way while smiling and says "You get it done and I will move there tomorrow!"

What??? Who was this person? Did I hear right? There was no electricity out at the home it was a cold ugly night. How did he see it? Wait... he said I can have my house! YES! Oh how I love this man! The exiled husband was now my knight! Did he really say it? Oh yes he did!!!! My hero!!! Now the hard work begins...