Thursday, March 18, 2010

Spring on our Homestead

Sarah in our kitchen garden.

We will be still using our garden plot one mile down the road and a plot on some neighbor's land as well. Our soil on our new homestead is full of clay and much of the area is wet. It will take some time to build up the soil. I am starting with an area that probably was a flower garden at one time. There are lots of roots to pull up but the soil is rich. We will extend this garden a bit more each year.

As we work the soil we have to fend off the chickens as they come right where I am working to get the worms as I expose them I worry that I may hit one with my tool by accident.

Here is a picture of one of the girls sunning herself after giving herself a dirt bath nearby where we were working.

We have eight maple trees tapped this year. Our new homestead was overgrown and as we clear out and open up the land a bit, the maple trees should grow at a faster rate. Right now they are on the small side. We had our first cup of syrup with our pancakes the morning before last and should have just a bit more than that for tomorrow morning.

Overlooking our pond

Finally, we all need a little rest after a hard day's work. Our neighbors didn't want these chairs. They were still in their boxes and our 11 year old son, Isaac, put them together for us. Can you believe that they are the same color as our home? .....

Warm wishes and joy, Tonya


  1. Have you done any reading on Lasagna Gardening or Ruth Stout and Her No-Work Garden Book? I found both these books at the library. It is a not till method of gardening and may help you to get more garden space out of your spot sooner.

  2. Hi Tonya ... just popped over to check out your blog ... so beautiful and interesting what you and your family are doing ... love it and looking forward to coming by again to learn more!


  3. Hello,
    Your blog is so beautiful.

    Thank you for sharing the knitted gnome pattern, I can't wait to make some for my children.

    Gina x

  4. Loved sharing the outside with you. Look forward to seeing the garden develope and grow. Even now I see the bones of paradise in the structure.

  5. So exciting all these signs of spring! I can't wait to watch that garden grow!

  6. I can't imagine having my own maple trees. how wonderful!

  7. How wonderful to have syrup from your very own trees! We have a few sugar maples that I keep saying we will tap some day, just haven't done it yet....


  8. Ah, maple trees! how wonderful! I so miss the local maple syrup where I grew up. Those chairs are beautiful too!

    Anyway, I wanted to drop by and say thanks for visiting us at Chocolate Eyes. Love your blog!

  9. Man, those are some great chairs. Score!

    Will you make raised beds near your house at all, or stick with the soil you have? I found that a few raised beds were great because you could easily put pvc piping over the top in arches to cover and grow/preserve throughout the winter. These warm days have got me thinking a lot about getting in the dirt soon. We have some seed potatoes and onion sets ready to go.


  10. Beautiful spring pictures! Our chickens have been enjoying dirt baths too. :)

  11. I love those kinds of chairs. How sweet that you got them for free--in a color to match your house even!

  12. I miss the sugar maple trees of my childhood. I will never forget the taste of cool, sweet "water" freshly tapped from the tree. So delicious!

  13. Our children all enjoying drinking the sap straight from the tree... Abby even made a sap "pop" yesterday - by freezing some.
    Warm wishes, Tonya

  14. It is always so amazing to see how everyone prepares the earth to get ready for Spring. Can not wait to see how your homestead blooms over the next few months

  15. It is so fun to experience the seasons with all by blog friends around the world! So excited for Spring!!

  16. Sounds like such a wonderful spot to live. I'm imagining how delicious your own homegrown maple syrup must taste, it sounds delightful.

  17. You have such a beautiful place to be working away outdoors! Happy garden making to you!

  18. Oh Tonya - I just love watching the daily life on your homestead. I'm tickled pink that you are "homesteading" - it makes me think of the Little House books and I love that there are people out there who choose this as a way of life. So beautiful. The chairs are great - I have always wanted some Adirondack chairs - and after getting up at 5.15am you sure must deserve a rest by the pond. Take care!

  19. Was working on my garden yesterday - it's a huge challenge to grow veggies out here in the desert. Still miss the east coast, and my huge garden there.
    Your homestead is so beautiful. !

  20. Hi Tonya :)

    Oh I wish things were ready here for the garden! What a beautiful sunny day you all had to work together. And what a blessing having Maple Syrup from your own trees! The chicks are so cute. Someday I hope we can have some.

    Thanks so much for visiting and the encouragement :)

    Have a blessed weekend in Him!

  21. such hard work!

    but how satisfying to have
    your pancakes smothered
    with the syrup from your
    own trees!

  22. Oh my goodness, I want to come live with you! So inspiring. Thank you for sharing XOXO

  23. Thanks so much for stopping by and introducing yourself. I'm going to enjoy following your blog, it's wonderful.

  24. What a busy, beautiful family.
    What a wonderful life you've given them.
    Happy Spring!