Saturday, October 27, 2012

Autumn Reigns

It's been a very long time since my last entry. Summer has ended and the coast's largest pumpkins have been weighed. Our days are a mix of rain and breezy sunshine, with the dark of night coming on suddenly and earlier. The nights are crisp and we see the stars shifting.

We're settling in at home. The move proving to us, once again, that we'd like to be without so much cumbersome Stuff. It blocks passageways and sits untouched for weeks or months. It is passed time to say goodbye to those things inexplicably held onto as we look at more days inside---cozy but NOT crowded. Finding the time can be difficult, but that excuse has outworn its welcome. Time for a Fall cleaning before we drudge in so many leaves and so much mud and wet that we can no longer judge what's clean and what's not.

The kids are growing up, both in their own ways. Keats' imagination has come out since his older cousin's visit from England. Her near constant humming and dancing has rubbed off on him and it is so fun to see. He pretends that his different fingers are various people and places them gently into his cars to race or to drive to the beach. He gave Frida's dog stuffie a diaper change this afternoon and has really made some leaps forward on his fake phone call skills. Frida is walking and has added a few words to her one-phrase vocabulary that has monopolized her speech for the few months. Her first word? She didn't have one. She skipped right on ahead to "What's that?" She has now found that a tad limiting and has added Olive, Keats, Daddy, Thanks, and Yum-yum. She still feels that crying and turning bright red is sufficient when getting MY attention, so Mama/Mommy has not made its debut as of yet. She is eating most things we give her, most notably, a hunk of smoked pork freshly sliced from the whole animal at a local BBQ on the farm. She was sucking and chewing on it the entire duration of the party. It was fantastic. Sadly, I'm almost sure she's allergic to cow's milk as she's broken out in hives a couple of times after playing with what Keats spilled. Both occurrences were outside, however, so I may be overlooking another common denominator. Birch and I were discussing the possibilities of goat and sheep butters, concluding that they must be disgusting or too low in fats. Anyone out there know? Luckily, there are plenty of vegan alternatives around here and lots of knowledgeable farmers, too.

I really do love living here. We still yearn for a small farm of our own and Birch's meat dreams have graduated to a local charcuterie. I'm still unsure of my aspirations in life but a shop up for lease has caught my eye and reignited my desire for a kind of girly paradise shop. Think a small, local version of Walmart/Target. Ha! That's a somewhat odd description, but imagine your favorite, quaint little fill-in-the-blank shops and now smoosh and mix them together into a small shop you could peruse while visiting a lovely farming town on your way down the coast. You pick out a picnic blanket, that Schleich cow family you've been meaning to buy, a few packets of heirloom tomato seeds, and perhaps handing the kids over to Daddy while you sneak a surprise lingerie set for next Months' date night. Oh, and of course, you'll make a note of the mugs, plates, and designer fabrics for your next visit. Did I mention we have story time and lectures/classes for the local community? Oh, dreams... I especially like the part where we're open Thursday through Monday. And so I battle the ever-dueling need to follow my aspirations and the haunting pressure of Anxiety. In this particular case, the anxious worry is well-founded as there is so much to hurdle and tackle. Business plans, loans, child care, lease agreements, and I'm not even sure what else. It may be too much when viewed along with Birch's hopes for himself and that opens up a huge can of worms...

Putting all that aside and firmly in its place, we are settling into what we are and where we are right now. White-tailed kites and sharp-shinned hawks fly and hover over the field opposite us as the farmer drives his tractor across, readying the field for winter planting. The sheep eat the yellowing leaves from the low willow branches. The chickens have molted and are fluffing up once again as the nights drop with chill and frost. Apples simmer in a pot on the stove and we're finding fresh grapefruit in our CSA boxes. Birch is making pumpkin green curry again and we're licking our lips at the thought of scratch-chicken soup and white bean stew with pork. We'll see how our new home fairs in the coming months of rain, cold, and flooding. Should be an interesting ride. Let's see if I get any craft time, shall we?

We are a family of four renting a home on a farm on the coast.