Monday, January 16, 2012

Snuggling In

Hunkering down and snuggling in is what life seems to be all about these last few weeks.  Both kids have been sick with a head/chest cold that just won't quit and Steve and I have been cleaning and organizing fools.  We seem to have no desire what-so-ever to leave the homestead.  We'd all just very much prefer to stay cozied up to the fire tending to the needs of health and home.  And that suits me just fine.

We are being blessed with a beautiful winter storm at the moment that is greatly adding to the mood.  The world outside my door is white, fluffy and magical.  There is nothing that brings a sense of quiet and peace to my world quite like snowfall.  I absolutely love it.

And this is where I have been spending much of my time during this storm:

Our nearly finished solarium!  I can't tell you how good it feels to have this project almost complete.... It has been a long time in the making.  The tree fell and smashed the original structure in three years ago!  I can't believe it has been that long.  All that's left is finishing work, but the structure itself is complete.  And what a cozy, lovely spot it is!  The woodstove heats it pretty well and it is so nice to have a spot to chill that is surrounded by windows and feels like we're outside, especially in the grey of winter.  I am really looking forward to getting the finishing work done and officially checking this project off my list!  Woot!  Woot!

Yes, quiet and mellow most definitely are the words of the day today.  Elderberries are simmering on the stove for another round of elderberry syrup for those coughing kiddos, fires are crackling in both woodstoves, snow is falling thickly and silently outside, the baby in my belly is moving less and less as it settles in for birth, and my mind and body ease more deeply into the slower rhythms needed for the transitions ahead.  I am very thankful for the opportunity this winter cold and storm have given me to slow down and snuggle in.

Monday, January 2, 2012

A Little Bit of Light

Hello again, friends.  Sorry for the long hiatus.  It has been a very busy few months, what with the putting the greenhouses to bed, putting up food for the winter, homeschooling, work, the ever-growing baby and belly, and the thousands of projects that are always taking place on the old homestead.  There just isn't room in the day for computer time unless it's work-related.

But, you know, I would really like to get back to regular updates.  Really I would.

On an exciting homestead note, we decided a few weeks ago to move ahead with the land clearing project. Clearing is actually not really the right word.  We are heavily thinning the forest on about 1.25 acres of our land.  The long-term goals are to get the remaining trees healthier and stronger (so we stop having so many topped and downed trees every time we have a windstorm), let more sunlight into our land and home, and eventually get a nice healthy pasture seeded and growing strong beneath the remaining trees so that we may graze some livestock.

It is amazing how different the land looks and feels with more open space and light.  I can't stop walking around with my mouth hanging half open and day-dreaming about fence lines, pasture seed, garden beds, loafing sheds, and critters.  I can't wait to raise our own livestock right here, a hop, skip and a jump from my own front door!  The future is looking a little brighter here at Howling Wolf, quite literally, with more visible sky through the dripping rainforest canopy.

Well, as I stated before, time is beyond precious these days, so I'll have to keep this post brief.  But, let's hope I can manage to return regularly to this space for fun updates and info!  For now, I will leave you with some greenhouse images from the later part of the summer season.  It's pouring now and so dark I absolutely need lights on to read by, so a little summer light and brightness seems quite nice....

Wow!  Just looking at those photos made me feel warmer, immensely grateful and deeply nourished!  What a great reminder in the darkness of a winter storm!  Happy New Year everyone!