Ebb and Flow

I know I’ve been posting a lot about how grateful I am that we ended up here. This house on five acres is never the type of place I imagined we would be, but I know a peace and joy here that I haven’t known anywhere else.

That said, it’s not always coming up roses. I’ve been a bit down in the dumps this past week just thinking about all the work we have to do and how we can never do it all. Just trying to keep the weeds under control is a full-time job in and of itself.

Some of the fruit trees are clearly not producing. The pond needs cleaning (in a way that won’t affect the bullfrog population that’s living in it). The barn needs repairs. The tractor in the barn needs repairs (currently in progress). Some trees need to have dead branches cut off. A few trees even need to be cut down. The raised beds need to be dismantled and rebuilt. Invasive plants need to be cut back and managed …. and on and on and on.

Too many projects, so little time.

Not to mention, the learning curve is steep. We’re learning as we go. I am constantly doing research.

And I’m trying to balance all the work we need to do here with the tasks I need to accomplish to build my business and line up paid client work.

I felt under the weather yesterday and was honestly glad for the excuse not to do anything outside. I just feel overwhelmed, and I keep wondering what we were thinking when we bought this place.

But, it’s now June 1. A new month. A fresh start. And also my birth month and the month that marks the end of spring and beginning of summer.

It’s supposed to rain this afternoon, and it’s already muggy and buggy and will heat up as the day goes on. But I put on my gardening gear, ignored my feelings of overwhelm, and just focused on a little patch of the flower bed next to our back porch. It was overgrown with weeds. I put on a podcast and weeded, then threw down some coreopsis and mixed wildflower seeds. The rain can water them later.

And now I feel better. Even clearing a small area of the flower bed feels like a big accomplishment. Especially when dealing with tons of sow thistle — the bane of my existence at the moment.

Thought I’d share some photos from my last couple walks/inspections of the property.

Despite the weeds, we had a glorious display of peonies this year. They are starting to droop and fade now, which makes me sad. I love peonies and they are too short-lived.

I may go out and cut a few more for another bouquet before they’re gone. I try to go out once a week to cut some flowers for the house. Last week’s bouquet was my favorite by far: peonies, multiflora rose, dame’s rocket, and blue false indigo.

Living here has really fired up my creativity, and creating flower arrangements with something different every week is another way of expressing it.

Oh, and another piece of news … I now have a worm farm! Me! As a girl, I couldn’t even stand to touch worms. And now I have a bucket full of red wigglers in our basement that I’m feeding and caring for so they will reward me with beautiful, rich compost.

This is a very small worm farm at the moment. I ordered 250 worms and they are living in a 5-gallon bucket (with holes drilled for air and for drainage — it’s stacked on another 5-gallon bucket that collects the compost tea). I’ve done a lot of research, so I am confident I’ve made the environment to their liking. I just need to check in every so often to make sure the bedding/blanket stay moist and add more food scraps/worm food.

Fingers crossed this experiment is successful, but it’s all part of that steep learning curve I mentioned earlier.

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