Omens

Webster’s dictionary defines an omen as “an event regarded as a portent or good or evil”. 

Some folks may think people look for omens as a way to cope, to explain, or rationalize a circumstance.  It downpours as your board your flight for vacation, or a rainbow appears on your way home from a bad day at work. For everyone else, they are seemingly random and insignificant, yet they have meaning to you at that time. 

That’s the unique thing about omens.  Or forewarnings or harbingers, whichever name you’d like to give them; they are personal and subjective. I would venture to say that they are most likely linked to a memory or feeling. 

For instance, there has been a lot going on around the homestead recently and needless to say a bit of uncertainty. Nothing drastic or catastrophic, but uncertain for sure.  Within the last few days, Old Man Winter has released his cold, bony grasp on the place and we’ve been able to get outside and begin spring clean up. Our most recent project has been to clear out the rock wall that lives alongside the road. It’s been quite an undertaking, removal of bittersweet and poison ivy requires a swift pruner and an agile pair of gloves! Whether I was lost in my own head or just blocked certain details out, I’m not sure…. but today it all became clearer.

Cardinals remind me of my grandmother. I honestly cannot remember ever seeing a cardinal at her house, but I do remember her being excited about them. We used to see them frequently at our house and my grandmother would always marvel and talk to my father about the cardinals and how beautiful they were. 

My grandmother said certain words differently.  Much like the actresses of her time used the transatlantic dialect, she had a unique way of pronouncing some words. She said “to-MAH-to” instead of “to-MAY-to”. And the way she pronounced “Cardinal” was almost as if she annunciated every letter. But you ever so slightly heard the “I” in the middle. It’s impossible for me to duplicate but I hear her voice say those words and it makes me smile. 

For weeks now, I have awoken to the familiar sound of a handful of cardinals. More than a few. They seem to enjoy my backyard and have been helping themselves to what’s left of the birdseed. (In the spring we don’t fill the feeder due to the frequency of bear visits in the area.). Today I took notice of a pair of cardinals that seemed to linger longer than the rest. They flitted around the yard for the entire afternoon, coming quite close to where I was working, sifting through the pile of debris I had been raking. Right around dusk I was able to watch them chase each other around the oak tree until they eventually retired to the treeline.

To the casual observer, it’s a bunch of birds. To the dog it’s something to be chased.  To the trained eye it’s a mating pair of Cardinalis cardinalis.To me it’s a good omen. A reminder of my sweet grandmother. A sign that things are ok and with spring comes renewal and growth. And for that, I’m postitively thankful.

Omens are subjective. What’s your good omen?

“And The Pursuit of Happiness…”

Its Independence Day and time for some reflection and pondering. I spent the majority of the day actually relaxing on the deck, where I could observe all that is going on on the acre. 


The chickens and ducks made their first foray outside of the coop, exploring the immediate area, purging the lawn of bugs and worms.  The bees are furiously gathering nectar, their flight paths making any seasoned fighter pilot jealous.  One reaches a zen-like state watching them come and go.  A trained eye can pick them up along the tee line until they get lost in the bright blue of the sky. 

From where I sit in that same tattered green and white hair that I cooked syrup in I can see and watch everything happening on the homestead. I cannot help but think perhaps this is what our founding fathers had in mind when they  scribed that fateful sentence… 

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

I have everything that I need.  I have food, clean water, shelter.  Whether I agree with it or not, I at least know where my taxes go for the most part.  I have a voice to determine who represents me to the government.  I have the right to grow my own food, own livestock, and do what I wish with my property.  I’m allowed time off from work. 

Somewhere along the line, we have lost our way.  We all think we deserve the latest iPhones, fancy cars, and big houses. We put ourselves in more debt just to keep up with those that have more.  We surround ourselves with material possessions thinking it will make us happier.  Our forefathers fought tooth and nail just to escape repression and establish their independence and we sit with an outstretched hand, not to help another, but in expectation that someone owes us something. 

I have never felt more satiated than I do today. I had the fortune to spend my day with people I love, surrounded by what I work for, eating food that I either harvested or otherwise provided.  I do not have to live in fear that I will be persecuted because of who I am, or what my beliefs are.

That, I believe, is the true meaning of “the pursuit of happiness”.  It’s not the latest technology, being “liked” or relevant on social media, or having material things at the cost of our financial well-being…. It’s the understanding we have unalienable rights that no one can take away because a few really smart men took it upon themselves to help an entire nation, instead of themselves.

´╗┐Dirty Hands, Clean Money

I don’t remember when it clicked.  When I finally figured out that having dirt on my hands was an experience, not just something to wash off. 

 I also can’t remember not having dirty hands.  We (my brother and I) grew up outside. Literally. There were a few occasions mom actually locked us out of the house!  Now, before anyone starts feeling bad for poor Adam and me, these were Mom’s “cleaning days”. No one, and I mean no one was allowed in the house until cleaning was complete. Now that I look back, we were outside for HOURS and the house wasn’t much cleaner than it was when we left… Maybe it was just her “peace and quiet days.”  Either way, I don’t actually remember feeling particularly upset about being able to play outside unsupervised anyway. And we had no less than a million things to do.  I’m not saying that we had a ton of toys, but if you take two boys and give them a few Tonka trucks and a dirt pile, you will have a perfect, working, to scale model of any construction site.  We even had a custom-made dirt sifter made from hardware cloth.  Dump trucks, rock haulers, excavators, backhoes, graders, bulldozers and the coveted “Boss Truck.” The Boss truck was the one we used to argue over, whoever had the Boss Truck determined where the dirt went, where the rocks went and inspected the roads for proper “flatness.” I would dare say, we knew everything about moving dirt and road construction by the age of 8.

Then came the tree houses.  Dad always had some extra odd job or project he was working on, and with that came an endless supply of treehouse materials.  Wood scraps, nails, screws, wood that wasn’t scrap but we took it anyway. And tools!  Real tools! Not that little wooden tool kit that we got for Christmas. You know the one, the little hammer with the pine handle that snapped. The stamped steel wrenches that bent if you applied it to anything other than the nuts and bolts that came with the kit. In hindsight, that’s probably what saved the entire house from being dismantled. We would sneak away with any tool we could find, hammers, screwdrivers, hand saws, hatchets and axes, bow saws, pruners, the list was as never ending as the supply.  I don’t recall any tools ever making it back to the barn though. But the sacrifice was worth it! We had three iterations of tree houses.  Each one bigger and better than the one before. The last one being three floors, ladders, steps, rope swing, zip line, elevator for tools and snacks, bunk beds, screened windows, shingle roof and cedar shingle siding.  The Cedar Resort. Stretching 25 feet in the air suspended between a handful of cedar trees it would easily sleep 12 kids, although I think the most that ever made it through the night was four.


Now to pay for all that we couldn’t Sneak out of the barn, we needed money.  Allowance was not really a thing we used in our house. We just had our assigned chores and completed them, sometimes without putting up too much of a fuss.  And every time Adam or I would approach the subject, it would be challenged by the notion that a roof and food and clothes were being provided and we just had to do the work.  I think the ultimate reason we had to to chores was succinctly put as “because I said so.”

So at the age of 10, I was told that there was a job I could do that would pay me money.  Real cash money.  Our family friends owned a greenhouse and strawberry farm up the road and I was recruited to help for the season.  Now up the road is a Maine thing, it generally means in a northerly direction, whereas down the road would imply a southerly direction, however, in this instance it can and should be taken literally. It was uphill. Very much uphill. One and a half miles of riding a ten speed bike uphill at 6am. Now the ten speed bike had been “modified” and only really had 8 speeds. Nevertheless, my eagerness to please ensured that I was on time every day, regardless of weather and always came prepare with a water bottle and maybe a snack.  I’d been to the farm several times and had a pretty good lay of the land, so introductions and orientation was nothing more than a short explanation of what we were going to do for the day.  Day one- plant berry plants.  It was a pretty simple operation, Harold sat on the tractor, which had an attachment that would simultaneously poke a hole in a row, add liquid fertilizer and drop a plant, all I had to do was keep up and place the berry plant in the pre made hole at the correct depth. All I recall from the rest of that day was, tractors move faster than humans, deer give birth in May, and the water that they used to mix the fertilizer was from Antarctica.  Six hours later, my back hurt, my hands were muddy and frozen, and I had dirt all over my face.  My reward? An all downhill ride home on the bike. I swear I was going 50. The next day was a different chore and each day was something different.  Then Friday came. My first paycheck.  Cold hard cash.  And as I left, on my bike, with my dirty hands and face, muddy shoes and a sunburnt neck, I had a sense of accomplishment. I worked hard, I got paid. I earned my money. I got out what I put in and it was mine.


I worked there for a while until I was old enough to get a “real” job. But it was there that I learned about what a work ethic is, sticking to a project, and always be looking for the the next one. I learned about plants and flowers, about which berries were the best and when to pick them, I learned that old ladies will give you a dollar if you help them with their trays of berries and flowers. And I learned that if you’re willing to put in effort and get dirty, you will be rewarded.

I entered the “real” workforce and worked various jobs through school. Moved around, lived in apartments or with friends, never got my hands dirty. I stopped digging in the ground, stopped hiking and kayaking. I had my sneakers and loafers neatly stored by the door, instead of a pair of boots resting where I finally took them off.  I wore khakis and button downs.  I got colds, flus, my skin got soft and my nails were always smooth. I got fat. I had essentially lost myself.  I had become so disconnected with my roots that I was just a shell of a person, floating through life with nothing to do.  Subconsciously, I think that’s when I knew I had to go back. Reestablish my roots.  Get my hands dirty.

I got a new job, where I get fresh air.  I do physical labor, I plant things, I water flowers, I help old ladies to their car. I bought a little house on a little acre and I’m making it my own. I’m not rich, I won’t ever be and I don’t want to be. But what’s mine is mine and I earned it. I don’t get sick, my hands are rough, my nails are chipped and permanently dirty.  I don’t wear sneakers much. My boots go on when I start the coffee and they come off just before I go upstairs to bed.  I’ve come to know that as the two best feelings of the day, when I put my boots on in the morning and take them off at night. It has a meaning. Just like the dirt on my heads, it’s significant. It’s the end of a day, and whatever payment I receive will have been earned honestly.

The Inagural Mowing

“In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt”- Margaret Attwood

There have to be over a hundred different “signs of spring”. This year, they all lied. We saw crocuses and 70 degree days in March, the snow melted and things were looking great.  Then that cursed groundhog indicated that we would have an early spring. He lied too. For the last six weeks it has been cold, rainy, drizzly, snowy and rather bleak.  

To escape the depressing weather, Drake and I found ourselves enjoying the warm water and soft sands of east cost Florida for a week.  A well deserved and hard earned vacation for the both of us.  

Once we returned, we decided some fresh air would do the ducks good. So we brought them out to the coop and let them get used to it. After a trip to the local feed store to stock up on chick crumble, more seeds, shavings and a rubber tub, we were geared up to build a small pool for them to test out.  The combination of the steps made from stones and bricks and a little gentle coaxing, they were swimming about and making a general mess of the place. They have since been returned to their box inside until we can teach them to use the ramp into the coop.

They have since been permanently transferred to the pen and are loving it…and I’m loving the duck smell out of the dining room!  

The weather has been “normal” now for a few days and the homestead has come alive in more ways than one.  The beehive is brimming with activity, with pollen laden workers coming back from their foraging runs.

Every neighbor has resurrected their hibernating grass cutting beasts,dusted them off, fueled them up and have begun the ritual of taming their respective bluegrass, fescues and ryes. The smell of stale gas fumes and fresh cut grass has permeated the neighborhood.  It was my final lap around the homestead behind the 21″ push mower when I discovered the correct sign that spring has arrived for good.

So the crocuses may deceive, the robin surely is confused and the groundhog is a pathalogical liar. The one undeniable, sure thing, guaranteed, signed sealed delivered sign of spring is the inaugural mowing of the lawn.  This many people cutting grass cannot be wrong.

First Hive Check

I’m not a calm person. I am always on the move and I despise sitting still if there’s something I could be doing. I don’t typically plan too far ahead either.

Bees have helped me with that.  There is a fair amount of preparation and planning involved in checking a beehive. Especially the very first time. I’ve been doing periodic external checks, making sure the feeder is full, watching for dead bees, and disturbances from wild animals and the like.  Today, 10 days after the bees were “installed”, I decided that the temperature and sunlight were enough that I could inspect the inside. 

I’m not afraid of really anything.  Creepy crawlies, snakes, bats, dark water, heights… Scorpions. I’ve never seen one, but I know I’m afraid of them.  And although I’m high-strung, I’m not easily jumped.  But I do have a suspicion that I wouldn’t care to be stung by a bee. Or more than one bee.  

So to combat this, I had to actually plan something out! I had to put on the gloves, the veil, get all my tools in order, gather pine needles for the smoker, and most of all, remain calm and use deliberate motions.  

  
Upon initially raising the hive roof, I saw a fair amount of bees clustering around the pollen party that I had given them.  I opted for both the pollen patty as well as the liquid feed for a couple reasons: a balanced diet, and the variable weather. I gently pried up one frame after another, watching the bees go about their business.  It was pretty late in the evening, so they were clustered pretty close together.  I saw that they have been bulging comb quite profusely in the recent warm days.  I finally found the queen on the last frame. Amongst all the other bees, she was parading around in all of her glory, her white dot disappearing and reappearing between the worker bees.  I was happy to see that she is ruling a calm, happy productive hive! I watched for some time until I gathered up enough confidence to remove my gloves and take out my phone to get a photo.  If I can get a certain someone to join me next time, I will try to get better photos! 

I will leave them be for now, refill their food and let them do their thing.  I’m more than thrilled with the addition to to homestead and I cannot wait to watch them throughout the summer! 

“Burn a tank of gas”

There has been a sudden flurry of activity around the house in the last few weeks.  And some inactivity thanks to two late spring snowstorms, bringing all progress to an abrupt halt.

Since Laze and Roux have joined the farm, we have lost four out of five chickens.  Drake woke up to a noise early in the morning, and when it was light enough out to see, only Loki remained. Needless to say, it was more than the weather that made it a bleak day… But such is life that there is a balance and a harmony to things if you just take a step back and observe objectively. The eggs are fairing well and should be hatching shortly!  We are hoping for four chicks. 

Once the weather broke this last weekend,  outside activities have been resumed and they have been going quickly.

The lumber for the deck was delivered and framing is complete as of Sunday evening and will be completed after vacation. The peas have been hardened off and planted and some serious leaf blowing and raking has taken place. This year the garden is being expanded from the 12×12 bed to an additional 20×30.  With that comes tilling. A lot of it. 

Tilling goes slow. It’s when I get the chance to meditate. I say meditate because “zone out” sounds unproductive. I get to reflect a bit and let my mind wander amidst the purr of the motor, clink of stones and the (slightly more frequent than I’d like) removal of large rocks.  I meditate while I drive, while I mow, run the leaf blower, and till soil.  If I were to sit in a quiet room, I would only be able to focus on the random noises and sounds, or any other subtle nuances that I could sense. It seems that if there is something going on that blocks out any outside influence it frees up the nomadic part of my brain does his thing and begins to wander.

After the second pass with my brand new Cub Cadet 208cc rear-time tiller, (if you’re reading that aloud, use a Tim the Toolman Taylor voice….) I was convinced that the spot that I had selected for the garden surely had been a former rock pile.  But worthwhile things take time, and I kept plugging away and fewer and fewer rocks made their presence.  The only major hang up was a small Boulder the size of a Buick Skylark.  All kidding aside, it’s big. And remain so until I can find a means to remove it. 

No matter what has happened in my life, I’ve always tried to maintain a “could have been worse” mentality. Anything is possible and more than likely someone has dealt with a similar situation before.  Between work at the store all day, and homestead duties, my shoulders were on fire, my legs were heavy and I was getting tired and clearly dehydrated.  It was at this point that I began to wonder what would have happened in this situation 200 years ago. No big gas powered tiller, just a horse and a plough. Or plow. 

I can only imagine what the first guy had to deal with when he and his poor horse dragged the first plow.  That poor bastard.  I have a pretty good idea that my land is former pasture or farmland, and had been worked at some point. I can almost hear the colonial curse words flying out of that unlucky fellow.  

Then I began to wonder when to stop. 

I’d already put in a 12 hour day at the store but the additional daylight was begging me to stay out and be productive. So I settled on one of many “Webbisms” and “burn a tank of gas and call it a night”. 

My dad had a million sayings, most of which I only now am beginning to understand and moreover, appreciate. Growing up, we had two wood stoves and like everyone else in town, burned wood. Now, we only had five acres that we called our own, so we always had tree-length wood delivered.  And that’s when the work began. It had to be cut, split, stacked in the woodshed, carried to the house, stacked in the woodboxes before it would provide that precious heat.  Now my Dad worked a full-time job and various odd jobs as well for extra cash.  Some nights he would be home at 3:30 sharp and some nights it would be well after dark.  As long as daylight remained, he would cut the firewood into stove length pieces that Adam and I would split and pile up to season the following day.  It didn’t matter how much daylight was left to the day, he would run that chainsaw until the tank ran dry.  

It wasn’t until recently that I came to understand and appreciate that thought process. There’s a definitive finality of it. There’s a maximization of productivity.  If one uses daylight, your eyes adjust to twilight and then again, there’s artificial light. If one adheres to a specific time, you still have unfulfilled opportunity for productivity.  Running out of gas means you have completed a cycle. The machine can do no more without being refilled, oiled, and sharpened. You may return it to its storage place and retire for the evening. You have done what you came to do.  If there’s sunlight left, enjoy it, if it’s dark, go inside.  

I can say that I have applied this principle every time I have had a task that required multiple undertakings to complete. Burn a tank of gas and call it a night.  Complete the cycle. Start again tomorrow. 

Things don’t last forever, chickens lay eggs, chickens get eaten. Snow falls, snow melts. The cycle is complete. Start again. The rocks will be there tomorrow.

  
To continue the spring expansion at the farm, the bees have been installed in the hive! Really looking forward to chronicling the progress and growth over the summer. Spring and summer cannot get here soon enough! 

Bees have arrived!

A Revolution Begins

“The reason the Boston Tea Party is more well known is because they had better newspapers….”

I’ve been toying with the idea of bringing up this topic for a while now.  Although it doesn’t pertain directly to the home life, it does interest me greatly and with the weather keeping me trapped indoors today, it seems like it’s meant to be.

As I mentioned earlier, I have had an interest in colonial and revolutionary history for a while.  So you can imagine my surprise and excitement when I found out that Weare, NH was the site of the Pine Tree Riot.  Now I’m sure this was merely touched on, if discussed at all in your middle school history class, so allow me to expand on the topic some more.

In April 1772, Ebeneezer Mudgett may have very well set the stage for Bostonians to escalate the rebellion to what we refer to as the Boston Tea Party.  Prior to 1772, there was the Stamp Act Rebellion, the Boston Masaacre, just two years prior, and numerous other acts of rebellion through the the colonies, and they were almost all economy based.  

The King had passed a law stating that all of the best trees in the new colonies belonged to him and were to be used to build more ships for the already massive British fleet.  Not to bore anyone with math but let’s look at some statistics…..  In 1772, roughly a third of all British Naval ships were built in America, each one using over 6000 trees.  Six thousand trees.  So at this point, the colonists and lumber mills are harvesting trees, processing them and basically giving the best material to the king to use on his ships.  

Mr. Mudgett by this time is a self made lumber tycoon. He’s a millionaire, who has made his living in the forests and lumber mills.  Weare and Goffstown are booming lumber towns, easily larger and more prosperous than the now Queen City, Manchester.  It’s now that he finds himself in the middle of a dispute about the King’s pines.  By law, the best wood belonged to the king. Ebeneezer Mudgett defied the law, he wanted to control his own commodity on his own property, and as such, hid the Kings Pines, and processed them for sale to colonists.  

Sheriff Ben Whiting and Deputy Quigly were dispatched to the town of Weare to arrest Mudgett for stealing from the King.  Stealing! How they could call it stealing is beyond me…. But alas, those were the charges.  Mudgett was released on the agreement that he would pay his fine the following day.

Instead, some fellow mill owners, met at Mudgett’s home and planned the next course of action.  The sheriff was staying at a tavern in town and they all decided to pay him a visit. They wanted to send a clear message to the King.

They blackened their faces with soot, and made their way to the tavern.  They broke into the room, held each man down and gave each of them a lashing for every tree that Mudgett had been charged with stealing.  The beating nearly took Whiting’s life. The horses couldn’t even escape the fray, and had their ears cropped and their manes and tails were cut off. They then took the men outside and sent them away on their horses, where they were jeered at by townspeople.

By the late 1700’s, rebellion is spreading across the colonies, and it core was right here in New Hampshire and New England.  A year after Mudgett defies the King and beats the sheriff, Boston Rebels destroy a million dollars in tea.  One of the most famous acts of rebellion in Amercian history.  Three years later, the Battle of Lexington took place.  Four short years later, the colonies will officially declare their independence from Great Britain.  And to think a sawmill tycoon from Weare, NH was on the front lines of the rebellion!  

When people first taste freedom, they develop and appetite for it and they want to be able to use that freedom to build their own lives…. “All men are created equal, and endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights.  Among those are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness….”

The marker on 114 showing the site of the riot

Make Way For Ducklings!!

Well, we have expanded by two more today.  After much deliberation and a trip to the local feed store, we have returned with two ducklings! Roux and Laze have joined the ranks.  They are currently peeping away in their makeshift box. Unbeknownst to them, they will be joined shortly by another round of Icies! Hatching for those little guys should begin next Monday! 

 

 

Meet Roux and Laze

  

Drake tending to the chicks

 

Happy Birthday 63 Quaker

Wow.  I can’t believe it’s been one year since I walked in the kitchen door as the newest owner of this little cape.  I say little as compared to some of the other houses on the road, the majority of which were built before 1900 and I’m sure housed very large families.  The house across the street is a monstrosity of a thing! For me, this is more than enough house.  I’ll admit it was a bit daunting at first, one the newness and excitement wore off, and the extra money that I had saved dwindled with each project I took on.  

Poor Melanie.  Melanie was my Realtor.  And she is the best.  I know all home buyers love their realtor, but Melanie went the distance.  When I first met her, I knew she would be the one that was best suited to help me on my way.  We looked at a lot of houses.  A lot. We actually looked at a house not too far from here and we were greeted by bobcats on the way out the door.  Melanie found some good stuff, every house had character, and had at least a few of the features that I wanted. As usual in New Hampshire, the weather doesn’t always want to cooperate.  Mother Nature is a fickle lady.  As we were scoping out houses and visiting as much as we could in one day, the roads became ice covered and I watched in fear and amazement while Melanie expertly navigated a 360 followed by a three point turn, all with wheels locked up and not turning.  Now THAT is commitment people!  

  But one fateful day, I get an email about a property and the pictures were pretty good,  so we set a time to go see it.  Now you may recall from an earlier post that there was more than the “normal” amount of snow on the ground in 2015.  So walking the actual property was impossible without snowshoes. Or if I were a yeti, or Yukon Cornelius.  So we opted to just view the house.  The big roll-off dumpster in the driveway made me a bit nervous, but I’d seen some houses that were in worse shape and actually had people living in it!  

We walked in the door, and found ourselves in the kitchen.  At first I was not a fan.  It’s a basic kitchen. White beadboard cabinets, clearly handmade, a recently installed quartz countertop and laminate floor that looks like tile.  It described more like a 1995 Chevy 1500… Lackluster but sturdy.  Once we cleared the kitchen, the first thing that caught my eye was the wide plank pine floors.   

 They were gorgeous.  Recently refinished, they shined like the floor at TD Garden and the whole place smelled like polyurethane.  Number two was the huge window facing the backyard and number three was the woodwork. Solid wood doors, wide plank wainscoting and built up trim on all of the windows and doors.  The craftsmanship of this house was on point.  Then I saw it.  The most perfect thing a room could have.   A big built in fireplace, with you guessed it, more woodwork.  I was in love.  I didn’t need to see the rest of the house.  I was sold right there.   

 Let’s back up a bit.  I’ve not always “enjoyed” history, but I have always found it interesting.  There’s a sense of pride to be able to state a fact about something that happened and feel a connection to it.  My grandfather, for example, used to cut ice off the Penobscot river for distribution to ice boxes around Bangor. That’s a pretty cool thing.  I cannot visit the city of Boston without taking in at least a small part of the Freedom Trail.  My favorite is The Old South Meeting House and Union Street.  It’s such an odd collection.  The old, hand laid brick, juxtaposed against the modern city skyline.  But you can stand there and imagine for a second, those people that you read about in elementary school walked on those same cobblestones, passed by the same buildings.  I’ve often wondered, what the hell Samuel Adams, or Paul Revere would say to see the beautiful city of Boston today.  In recent years, perhaps in reverence of my own revolution, have developed a keen interest in “revolutionary times”. The sheer intelligence and bravery that the founders of our country possessed was noting short of amazing.  All to often we forget the power that a small group of intelligent, purpose-driven people, and the change that they can create.  

Ok, back to the future.  Well, the past, really.  Whoa.  That got confusing.  There were a handful of feature in this house that  grabbed me an pulled me in.  The wood floors.  I’m a sucker for wide plank pine floors.  Secondly the woodwork.  Whoever did the work was a craftsman and I appreciated it immensely. There are no door knobs.  None.  Only thumb latches.  And the big, beautiful fireplace. I got the instant feeling that Paul Rever himself could walk through the door at any moment, pour himself a whiskey, post up by the fire and regale me with stories of copper bottomed pots and lantern signals.  All of these details give the feel and authenticity of a house from the early 1800s. But according to the paperwork it was built in 1965.  Winner!  All the “modern” amenities like, building codes with the authentic colonial farmhouse charm.  I was sold.  And shortly thereafter so was the house.

So here I am, a year later.  Trying to create a homestead lifestyle. Still overwhelmed some days, but still completely satisfied.  The house has been painted with colors from the National Registry of Historic Places, in period with other early American homes.  The flower gardens have been reclaimed and the perennials are coming back.  There’s life in this house again.  It’s still a work in progress, and some things remain to be finished.  But it’s mine.  And it’s home. And I can’t wait to build a life here.