Posts Tagged by Nature
|November 4, 2012||Posted by Issa under Just Pictures, Simple-Eco-Happy|
Wikipedia says this is a golden silk orb-weaver, but I know it as a banana spider. It’s a beautiful spider that makes big, awesome webs, and one recently found a home in our bushes.
|August 23, 2012||Posted by Issa under Simple-Eco-Happy|
Summer is winding down, but the world is still so vibrant.
The ducks are always a joy, whether they’re preening after a bath, following each other around in a line, or nestled into the grass to rest.
Dylan is frequently roaming the property, dirty, happy, and getting into things.
Basement Cat lounges about.
A few more flowers make their appearance.
And inside we start getting ready for fall, like with the 19 quarts of canned tomatoes Joshua put up.
We turned off the A/C this week, too, since the night times are getting cool enough to use the magic fan system of house cooling.
Is it still summer to you, or do you feel fall coming?
|April 26, 2012||Posted by Issa under Uncategorized|
Maybe someday I’ll be an old farmer… and an old writer. In the meantime, I’ve got my little homestead, and I write in fits and starts, but I never slow down on reading. I read every post by Gene Logsdon, an old farmer and old writer. It doesn’t surprise me that my attitudes about the land line up with those of an old timer. It does surprise me when this 80 year old man seems to share a lot of my political ideas, too. Whatever he has to say, it’s always interesting to me in a surprisingly quiet and intimate way.
My homesteading scars are limited to a couple of lines on my arm from the wood-burning stove. I’m sure there are more to come, though. From Scars Keep The Record of Our Lives:
If you want to get a lively conversation going among farmers, bring up the subject of scars. For some reason we glory in telling about the marks of maiming or near death that decorate our bodies like so many road signs along the trail of life. Hardly a one of us doesn’t have a crooked leg or missing finger, or a lost limb… Perhaps it is the gravity of the situation that awes us into wanting to talk about it.
This spring has been undeniably bounteous for me. The growth, the babies, my joy in the details. It always seems like spring comes just in time. From Nature’s Promises Kept Again:
Going into March… I am torn between despair over a political process descending into lunacy and an economic process that guarantees only an ever-growing poverty class. I am glad I do not know how to tie a rope into a noose.
Then I look out the window one morning and see the great miracle… Slowly but surely all the spring wildflowers return— actually this unusually warm spring, they came fast and furiously— and I feel that great uprising of joy and hope once again. Nature does not renege on her promises.
The resilience and stability of nature is amazing and we often miss it because the news of the day focuses on the failures and threats, not on the successes. In all the earth-shaking changes that have shattered our sense of security over the past forty years or so, here on our farm, right here, the state of wild nature is remarkably little changed.
And then Living At The Whim of the Weather was written right as spring was snatched back momentarily this year. I don’t think I lost any plants, even though I definitely planted early.
Gene’s most recent post It Pays to Stay Home resonates with me, too. I love to go out into the world, but I love to stay home at The Wallow, too. Until I moved here, I never knew how interesting one’s own backyard could be.
Staying home has to be one of the most unpopular ideas in America where the whole culture embraces faraway travel as essential to happiness. Many of us don’t really have homes that can provide as much enjoyment as travel promises. Rather than spending our money to acquire such a property, we are taught to buy such enjoyment with far away travel. Perhaps what we need is proper publicity. To advertise traveling at home, a documentary could open with unbelievable close-ups of ants herding and milking aphids on an apple tree, a raccoon destroying a bluebird house, a hawk dive-bombing a mouse, a flint arrowhead sticking out of a creek-side cliff. Then a roll of drums and a voice sonorously introduces the docudrama: “Today we are going where no explorer has gone before— YOUR BACK FORTY.”
If you’re ever in the mood for some down-to-earth farming posts with insight, I recommend Gene Logsdon at The Contrary Farmer.
|April 28, 2011||Posted by Issa under Simple-Eco-Happy|
|March 9, 2011||Posted by Issa under Homesteading|
It’s almost spring at The Wallow!
Here’s the last of this year’s wood stash:
If we were to use that up, it would be right around three cords that we used this winter.
Here’s the view out to the west of the house:
When it’s really spring, that will all be covered in lush greenness.
Here are the raspberry canes we transplanted last fall:
I’m watching with anticipation to see if they made it and start putting up new growth.
|January 21, 2011||Posted by Issa under Simple-Eco-Happy|
In Fishlake National Forest in Utah there are about 47,000 trees, but they are actually a single organism! Click through to read more about this massive fascination.
|January 10, 2011||Posted by Issa under Simple-Eco-Happy|
|December 15, 2010||Posted by Issa under Homesteading, Just Pictures|
|November 6, 2010||Posted by Issa under Homesteading|
How do I know that fall has arrived at The Wallow? The Ladybug Apocalypse has begun!
I’ve been here two falls now, and apparently this will be a tradition. As the temperature starts to drop, there’s the sudden appearance of ladybugs around the windows in the house.
Barely live ladybugs that are soon dead ladybugs.
Piles and piles and piles of dead ladybugs.
|Photo by: The Pug Father|
It would be impossible to exaggerate this situation. Every single window sill in the house, and any flat surface near the windows like tables or the floor are covered in the corpses of ladybugs. It doesn’t make much sense to clean them up, either, until it’s all over, because by the time you’ve wrapped up the cord of the vacuum cleaner, 6 more have died in the newly clean space.
Last year my bed was situated underneath a skylight. This had two unfortunate effects. One was that as I tried to sleep, I could hear ladybugs falling dead onto the bed. Ew.
The other problem is that The Ladybug Apocalypse coincides with the Wasp Invasion. These are very similar except in scale and in the primary mode of death. There are gazillions of ladybugs, and they die on their own. There are a handful of wasps a week, and I try to kill them as soon as I see them. The wasps are going to die anyway, so they are exempt from my bug-relocation program. I kill them so they don’t sting me from their death beds.
When my bed was under the skylight, I would lay in bed afraid that wasps were about to attack me at any moment.
My bed is now in a different location.
My office desk is kind of halfway between two windows. This means that as I sit here during the day, both wasps and ladybugs go whizzing by my head, and ladybugs crawl half-heartedly all over my desk.
It’s very strange, but I’m beginning to make my peace with it (which is also strange, I guess.) Last year I was terrified of the wasps, and killed them by sucking them into the vacuum cleaner, which I could do from a distance with a long attachment. This year I just whack them with whatever’s nearby and go about my business. Although I do keep a daily tally like it’s some kind of bizarre cage match. Last year I tried to clean up after the ladybugs as it happened. This year I’m going to settle for being entertained by how big the piles can get before the whole thing is over.
I just think of it as a “feature” of living here.
|November 2, 2010||Posted by Issa under Homesteading|
Joshua and I moved into the Wallow sometime in October 2009, so it’s just now been one year here. I was driving up to the house the other day and thinking to myself how much I still love it. I’m prone to boredom and used to moving around a lot. It’s easy for me to fall in love with a place and just as easy for me to lose interest. The Wallow still delights me every single day, though, in every single way. Here’s a look at the seasons of the last year from around the Wallow.
When we moved in in the fall of 2009, the place had been unoccupied for a couple of years and was quite overgrown!
But Joshua turned out to LOVE mowing, so that was over pretty quickly.
Here’s me seeding the field, turning it into pasture for the pigs we would get in the spring:
And I spent a lot of time those first couple of months marveling at all the little bits of nature I could find:
A beautiful view of winter out the west side of the house:
And then the full bloom of spring 2010:
Spring brought Hampie and Yorkie to us, too, who were just tiny little pigs in March.
In July we got the chickens:
And by July the pigs were BIG!
I’ve taken my hammock down for the winter, but added an iron daybed to the porch instead, for breezy fall napping (picture stolen from Joshua, here):
It’s definitely fall again, a whole year gone by at the Wallow. It’s been a fantastic year, and I’m ready to start another one.