[Homestead] Wither Homestead?
erthnsky at bellsouth.net
Wed Feb 3 19:37:30 EST 2010
Thanks for the update Lisa. I recently discovered that you were on a
'block list' I had for Facebook. I have no clue as to why, but I had
wondered why you never posted..LOL.. Now that I have rescued you, I
have enjoyed catching up.
What Gene said keeps sticking in my mind I suppose because it is
contrary to the way I see things. He proposed: "As with TMEN and other
gardening/country living mags, once the subjects have been covered
multiple times, it is challenging to go back to them and find something
new to say. And it is tedious to teach the same class over and over. The
teachers tire and retire."
I just think that everything changes in life. Homesteaders, like
everyone else, must adapt or compromise. There are always new options
or new things to try. _Everyone_ is a teacher, because everyone *could*
share a story or an experience, and even if it is repeated on the list,
it still has value. I can't tell you how many times I've read the LOTR
trilogy, and each time, I find something new in it that I never saw
before. Because I change, I see one thing one time, and perhaps the
next time the story is told, I hear it from a totally different perspective.
I love getting updates and hearing about the daily doings of others who
are trying to live a simpler life. I miss it, too, Lisa. Even if I
don't "learn" anything that will be immediately useful to me, I bathe in
the spirit of the congregation(of the Church of Tvo perhaps<g>???), so
to speak. It still feeds my soul. I should also say that I am happy
that some of the 'congregation' have found a source to feed their own
soul, even if that is not here. To each his own. We are, after all,
individuals with a tendency to be ornery, opinionated, and well-educated
loners, and a list like this would be no fun if we all ate the same
food, grew the same crops, worshipped in the same church, lived in the
same state, etc. Our strength is our diversity, but sometimes, like in
real life, we withdraw to avoid expression of that diversity.
Communication, however, makes us stronger, more able to adapt to the
changes we all face in life. We just have to make/take the time.
Lisa Kae Van Meter Perry wrote:
> Nothing for weeks and then 21 posts in a single day--when I didn't
> check email.
> I went back to school (online) last fall. Completed two classes last
> semester. Completed one this semester and beginning the second one as
> soon as I log off this morning.
> Hubby and I are joining a few other families and getting our first
> chickens for meat around March 15. We'll place a group order and
> eventually slaughter together--to commiserate and learn. We're
> starting small, beginning with a dozen or so for each family. We
> welcomed hunters to our land and took 4 deer this past fall--the
> freezers are full. Finished the last of the pressure canned venison
> from a year ago. We probably ought to pressure can some of the steaks
> sitting in the freezer. Love making stew from canned venison.
> Until this morning, we've had 5 hens for the last 13 months that had
> just begun to lay eggs again. Today we have four. We don't turn the
> lights on, so we've resorted to buying eggs which is stupid when you
> think about it. Bev is probably right. Maybe a happy medium of
> turning the lights on for a week to get production up and then off
> again. Maybe we'll try that, if I remember. Which is less
> expensive... to pay for eggs or electricity for the hens?
> The peach tree was diagnosed in early autumn w/ peach tree borrer.
> The tree stands a 50/50 chance of making it, but is already 20 years
> old give or take. This next year we'll plant two new peach trees.
> This past summer the borrer killed our two plum trees, we were told
> they are much less hardy than peach and go fast. They bloomed, then
> in mid-summer something looked wrong and then they were dead. They
> were pretty trees but never bore fruit, planted long before we bought
> the farm. They were different varieties, but bloomed when a hard
> frost came along.
> Our 100 year old Stayman Winesap also has health issues and appears
> to be dying, in sections, from old age and disease. It's possibly
> treatable, but we have to take off 2 huge arms (of 5) with a chainsaw
> and after that the tree also has a 50/50 shot to survive. We've
> debated this situation on/off since last fall. The arms have to be
> sawed off in chunks and the tree (in our front yard/field) will look
> disfigured after this is done. Fortunately, the other apple & pear
> trees (& two mulberry & one cherry) on the farm are still healthy as
> are the blueberry bushes.
> We decided to get rid of the dwarf apple trees in the garden as they
> take up prime real estate and don't produce much. We have other
> apple trees not in the garden, so no big loss. Frankly, they've been
> a pain to take care of--though pretty in the spring. Someone has
> spoken for them and they are supposed to get them this month. Fingers
> My Vintage '09 peach wine failed due to operator error of which I am
> not proud. There are still several very drinkable bottles of Vintage
> '08 dry peach wine in the pantry. I figured out my mistake and aim
> to make mulberry wine with merlot yeast and peach wine as well, if we
> have peaches this year.
> Planted Jerusalem artichokes and more daffodil bulbs last fall that
> we'll look forward to this year.
> We primed the bathroom for a new coat of paint--long overdue. We've
> decided to sell our farm to relocate elsewhere in the county on less
> land in a smaller, off-grid home. We'd like a smaller mortgage--one
> that can be paid off in less than 10 years. We've posted it online
> and have had lookers but no takers yet. Time to get serious, as I
> understand it, the capital gains change for the worse in '11.
> Spencer will be 20 next month and attends college part-time, he works
> full-time in the local health food store (2 years in May). He says
> he's enrolling in the welding program at the local comm. college this
> fall. He's dated a nice girl since last summer. He lives in our
> rustic cabin and eats dinner w/ us most nights (he cooks on Wed.)
> when he's not house sitting. He scored a great house sitting gig a
> year ago, the family is gone for 2 months a few times a year and they
> pay him. He was gone since after T'giving (though he comes over
> weekly, usually) and he returns to the cabin soon. Supposedly he's
> looking for an apartment, but we don't think he's put much effort
> into looking.
> Emerson will be 15 this summer and thinking of possible part-time
> summer jobs. He is still home schooled and more active w/ his friends
> than his brother was. He played the Ghost of Jacob Marley in a local
> youth theatre troupe production in A Christmas Carol in Dec. He is
> looking forward to playing soccer again this spring. He thinks living
> a bit closer to town might be nice since it would make it easier for
> him to get together with his friends.
> Scott closed The Pickin' Porch as a retail music store last May, he
> kept the name for his fretted instrument lesson studio in an arts
> center where he rents a small room. We sold the house last August
> which was home to his store and my former mortgage biz. He trimmed
> back from 50 students to 40 students per week and wants to start
> giving lessons on Skype to people anywhere in the world. He is
> booking gigs for this year and next. We still threaten to use our
> passports for this purpose.
> We've gone skating a few times on the frozen pond, even played
> 'hockey' one day w/ croquet mallets & the ball. I managed to stay
> upright, I grew up ice skating. Looks like winter is far from over,
> we're expected to get more snow this weekend.
> I still believe the Greater Depression has started; my husband and I
> occasionally say there's no one we'd rather go through the Greater
> Depression with than each other.
> Looking forward to beginning cole crops and tomato seeds shortly
> thereafter. Nothing is more inspiring and exciting than germinating
> I'm glad to know you all are well and still alive. I've missed you
> guys now and then.
> Lisa sw VA _______________________________________________ Homestead
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Many of our greatest American thinkers, men of the caliber of Thomas
Jefferson, Henry Thoreau, Mark Twain, William James, and John Muir, have
found the forest an effective stimulus to original thought.
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