Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Yard (and any other viable space) Decor.

Did I ever mention that the former owners of our house, really, really liked yard "decorations"? This picture doesn't do their love for tacky ornaments justice. 

Take this photo and extrapolate. 

Imagine a complete collection of cow memorabilia. (double this)

Imagine how every "special place" might have it's own unique set of decorations. For instance, you can picture a set of "fairy furniture," arranged comfortably under a large tree, complete with a pink rocking chair (pictured above) as a perfect resting place for any mythical creature tired of flapping its wings to relax.

Imagine how the owners' love for "things" like this may have crept into the windows and crevices of our house and how interesting it must be to pull open the blinds in the spare bedroom, only to discover a set of twirling crystals wrapped in wire and attached so firmly to the blinds that it requires near demolition to remove.

Imagine my surprise, a year into home ownership, when we explore a new area of the property and come across another "find." Most recently, I unearthed a wooden patriotic eagle that doubles as a wind spinner (yes, I looked it up, that is the proper term.) I imagine it looking strikingly like this one in it's glory days...

Imagine your dear partner who has a fancy for rhyming (and real poetry, much to his credit), and a particular penchant for memorizing anything non-useful, discovering these posters with the caption below. 
"May neither drought, nor rain, nor blizzard.
Destroy the joy-juice in your gizzard.
And may you camp where wind won't hit you,
Where snakes won't bite, and bears won't git you!"

Imagine how often I hear Mr. Bee repeat this bizarre little ditty because he thinks it is so weird and funny. 

I guess some things can't be blamed on the previous owners. 

Monday, January 14, 2013


It's been quiet around this electronic homestead, but don't for a moment think it's been quiet in our physical world. Generally, I like to write about things that are solid, or at minimum, unsettled things whose uncertainty I can count on. Instead, life has consisted of "we'll-have-to-see" or "we-won't-know-till-we-get-there"  moments, with a whole lot of decision-making thrown in. Over the coming days and weeks, I'll find the space to write about it all, and hopefully whether through this process or through time, will find solid footing I want.

One thing I know for sure is that homesteading takes you over, and over again, through the full cycle of life.

We recently lost two of our ducks. Butry, one of the big white ones, and one of "The Littles" that we hand-raised. It was torture. I went outside one Saturday morning to let the Ducks out and I counted. But before I could finish counting, I knew they were not all there.

Each morning, four quacking ducks gather at my feet waiting for treats and love. This morning there were only two. "Why couldn't it have been one of the other ducks?" I asked myself over and over again as I struggled to make peace with the truth. You know the outcome. You know it already happened, but  somehow you want to change it so it's just a little bit better. A little more palatable. Why I couldn't it have been a duck without a name?

I was scouring our property, scouring every bush and suspecting every owl that dare cry. I had to find them.
I searched each night and each morning. I would look into the thick forest and hope any moment the ducks would come waddling out, having had a great adventure but ready to return home. I was consumed with a longing I've rarely known.

Hope springs eternal.

In the end, I found something, though not what I was hoping for. The neighbors who sold us the goat, called us and asked if he had a home for their now-lonely Peckin, whose flock-mates had become the recent dinner of a raccoon or dog. We arranged the adoption, and are grateful for the addition. Our flock-family feels a little more complete, but I think there's still room for more.

Welcome, Ms. Duck.