Off-Grid Agrarianism

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42 articles in category Off-Grid Agrarianism / Subscribe
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It seems like a good week for introductions, what with the solar oven finally getting its own announcement and all. And if that does, then surely this new living space should have its own post, right?

The last few weeks have been a flurry of activity on what we are calling the new cabin. Walls were put up, ten windows in all were installed, and Stewart decided to put up the siding to protect the radiant barrier. The number of (cute) supervisors on this project has been way over the top. Moving day(s) will take place once the last of the work is done.

And I plan on leaving as much stuff behind in this older living space as I possibly can. One of the perks that I am so looking forward to is having a place to just put the things we don’t use every day. It seems like such a small thing, but I do believe it could be a game-changer for us. That and the possibility of a separate office space!

We’ve eaten quite a few meals over there on hot days and I’m already enamored with the breeze blowing through that place.

The Lord has truly provided everything we’ve needed in His perfect time.

But oh, I remember all of the plans we made… We’d live in a tent while we built. We’d build underground right away to mitigate against the heat. It would only be us and two three four small children in this space we’ve dubbed the hallway house. We’ll figure it out, right?

Snort.

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For a few weeks every year we hit this sweet spot. The days, and most nights, warm up enough that we don’t have to think about firewood.

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Things are being planted and sprouting up in the garden.

IMGP7979Jackets and sweaters are only needed in the morning or evening and new, exciting projects see more attention than they do the rest of the year.

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We watch every little thing come out of dormancy, like this Siberian Pea Shrub.

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I try not to get too excited, for I know that what comes after this quick in-between can be just brutal.

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But right now we’re soaking it in, trying to make the most of the beautiful weather, and being grateful for a season…

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that makes us all smile.

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We had a couple of extra roosters in the flock that needed to go. Rooster butchering is always an exciting and somber event around here and this time Stewart had the boys play a more hands-on role.

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I am happy that they know where that chicken soup came from, that they see the whole process. It seems a much easier transition into the knowing as a child versus the knowing as an adult.

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And that brothy soup was delicious. We butchered two this time and I decided to try oven-frying the second. Despite the fact that I overcooked it a touch, it was delicious.

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We have somewhere around a dozen hens now in the flock. We’ve had chicks grow into layers, lost pullets to hawks, and lost chicks to who-knows-what.  We are definitely interested in expanding the flock, but for now things seem to be working well.

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Recently we have been getting more eggs than ever. We had an all time high of eleven found in the laying box the other day. It’s always exciting to share the egg count for the day!

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The very first rooster we started with 2.5 years ago injured his foot to the point of no return. We nursed him a bit, separated him from the punk teenage bully roosters, but in the end he was suffering too much. It was hard, but letting him go seemed the right thing to do.

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The bed we planted next to the cabin is sprouting up nicely. Lettuce and collards and a few other random things are making their way up.

IMGP7827I had very little expectations of a garden this spring. A new baby means I’ve got other things I have to be doing and I prepared myself for the fact that Stewart’s health might be the other limiting factor. So, for the very first time, that usual spring “hope” I feel in regards to the garden was tempered by a very real knowing that what is meant to be will be.

And I’ll be a monkey’s uncle if Stewart didn’t plant the entire pallet garden in greens and herbs and other delicious things. It’s early still and we could definitely see another frost, but for now I’m just waiting and watching with a baby in my arms.