Hot Late July: A 2016 Review

Hey Late July! Hey Hot Hot Summer!

Wow… What a year it has been on our homestead. Full of so much creation, change, learning, growth, connecting!


An off my head wings idea of what’s transpired here :

•Moved to the property in January and set up the yurt and storage tent.

•Started clearing select tree and bush sections of land. S * L * O * W l y – and glad we did (even against many a neighbor’s advice to “get a bush hog out here”) as we have hundreds of persimmons, some even 20 ft high and ample biodiversity.

•Dug beds for a garden, including planting 4 25 ft rows of sweet potatoes, 2 rows of herbs, flowers, beans and a myriad of squash, 2 apple trees, and much more! A goal of this year was specifically increasing biodiversity of the plants we’d love to have return annually. Hoping for some volunteerism… Tulsi, genovese basil, chamomile, calendula, thyme, flax are just a few to name some!

•Build a composting toilet sweetly dubbed the Fert Lab, as it certainly is a fertility laboratory converting (with the help of many an organism!) our poo and pee into a safe to use humanure after two years. To our great happiness, one of our recent guests said her mom would even probably poop there (and that was saying a lot). I’ve always said, I hate pooping (or sitting any length of time) in spaces that aren’t beautiful or that I don’t like to be in, so I thought starting now with high intention on a traditionally shitty spot would be grand 🙂 we did a stud frame on top of locally collected stone foundation with lime mortar (damn rocks are heavy!) and did a slip straw infill with clay plaster. Nearly all of the wood and tin roof for the building were salvaged last summer from our friend’s old barn. Hurrah! Pooping success

•Made connections with a myriad of kind folks in the community, including our adjacent neighbors. Many a fun night was had and multiple work parties switching off on each others lands. And fabulous pot lucks full of local food! (And did I mention the supreme pleasure of eating mostly locally, grown by yourself and a handful of friends? So stoked we’re already doing this as it’s one of our deep goals.)

•on top of that, the month of July must’ve been unofficial visitor month as we had friend’s traveling through almost constantly. Indiana, ecovillages, Utah, California, cross country travelers included. It was really fun to engage people in our projects, cross pollinate and learn and enjoy together.

•swam in the creek nearly every day as it got hot- sometimes 3 or 4 times a day. We have a gorgeous creek which we praise daily.

•constructed the trapezoidal gazebo , the teahouse gazebo= teazebo we drew up last year. Roof, 1/4 slip straw walls, door and partial screen are on. We extended the deck and the building faces southwest directly into the garden. The last few nights we slept, ate, dried our potatoes and onions, read, practiced acroyoga, and sat there in the shade during the middle of the day so it’s already fulfilling its purpose. Human spaces (shade, bug free) are definitely important in the midst of the garden!

•had a 250 ft well dug and installed a manual Simple Pump ourselves. Planning to get a dc motor for the pump powered by a solar system eventually, but praises be! We have water up at the top now!

Personal accomplishments, inner growth cycles, and realizations will flush out in time I’m sure. Now we are on our annual westward migration to see friends and travel. First stop, some high alpine camping in New Mexico and a workshop led by Ini in Taos because his Sprouting book is out!

How thankful I am for our land, the connection and inspiration it affords and all of the beautiful friendships we share in our community.

Didn’t fish too much last season, but that’s a goal of mine upon my return!! Someone make sure I get a kayak ASAP 😉