Saturday, December 10, 2011

Post 1,000: A Look Back

Google identifies this as our one thousandth post.  We thought a look back would be appropriate.  In 1994 Ed marked his 50 th birthday by purchasing the last piece of an abandoned farm.  This photo was taken when we walked the land prior to buying it. We loved this place at first sight.  Ed was looking to reshape our lives as hand tillers of the soil.  A life in close harmony with nature was the goal. What was once an open field is now the home of our house and garden.

A stone square was planned to anchor the garden.  Nearby stone was moved to the wall site by wheelbarrow.  Stone from the back of the property was moved in the pickup truck. Special water worn stones were brought here from Jane's stream.  Batter boards and stakes defined both the  location and height of the planned walls.

Raising all four walls at the same time would have been easier but we had no experience.  One at a time, each corner wall grew.

Four walls are done and work shifts to preparing planting beds.  We expected to scratch and plant in the rich old fields.  What we found was gravel just under the surface.  A thin layer of plow broken stone mixed with some soil covered the gravel.  Old hay bales, leaves, sod and weeds build compost behind the walls.

The red level helps adjust the masonite strips that separate the soil and the path.  Removing those curved strips was the most difficult part of the job. Time has made changes. Plants, particularly thyme, have grown into the stone paths muting the fine dividing lines seen here.

A more simple lifestyle in tune with nature seems to suit the two of us.  Many years later, the old bench needs rebuilding and we move a little slower. Some hand tools have been replaced with motorized ones  but the smiles remain. We still love it here together!


Esther Montgomery said...

I thought you were showing us how you built your house - but it turns out to have no roof.

FlowerLady Lorraine said...

Congratulations for your 1000th post and for making the decision to live close to the land. You've created a lovely bit of paradise. Thank you for sharing it.


JEllen said...

Congrats on the 1000th post!!! Most importantly though major kudos to what you have accomplished during that time frame. I LOVE the last photo of you two. Looking good:)

Beth at PlantPostings said...

Congratulations on your 1,000th post! And thanks for taking us back to the stone wall building project. I love visiting your blog through the seasons!

petka said...

Viewing your blog regularly and I am pleased with new photos. But these old photos! I see a great job for 18 years. It's amazing. Congratulations :-)

Again I was surprised how your landscape resembles southern Czech Republic. I look at your hills - and your hills are the same as our hills behind our windows.