Monday: House gains some semblance of home as Jim and I unpack and put away. All I really care about is a kitchen and a bed so I feel settled already.
Tuesday and Wednesday were spent catching up on the overflowing office work. (Pricing out gravel, coordinating the delivery of the shipping container, listing our internship (if you or someone you know is interested), updating our website, getting an instagram (@lakedividefarm), and working on planning.)
I also made a giant frittata using (almost) all goods from the Dexter Market including eggs from Rustic Roots and garlic salt from Shurmur Farms. It was so good that I put a frittata recipe in here for your perusal.
Thursday: Gravel delivery (29 tons!) for the new greenhouse we will be building. I was amazed at how beautiful it is! rounded stones of all colors. Honestly, it made me feel rich! The Case 695 ("big tractor") refused to start because it was sooooo cold so Jim and I ended up shoveling a lot of gravel.
Jim sealed the upstairs balcony door (sans balcony) closed both to prevent disaster and to make our house insurable.
Friday: I finalized the shipping container delivery and then we enjoyed some respite. We headed to the Detroit Institute of Arts with Will, Jim's brother and my wonderful friend Roza, to enjoy some creativity and each others company.
Saturday: Jim left for New Jersey with his brother to pick up his car and to supervise the pick up of the shipping container. My brother and I change the oil in my truck and worry over how the shipping of the shipping container will go and whether the tractor won't start because it is cold or for some other reason. I know worrying doesn't really accomplish anything, but I guarantee it takes up time!!
Sunday: I wrapped the tractor in a gigantic tarp and put a heater in there with it. Ultimately, after looking at the forecast and forcing my anxiety back into the closet, I ended up waiting to start it until Monday, and it starts up just fine. After wrapping the big tractor, I headed inside to research engine block heaters for it. If we want to use this machine to plow snow in the cold, it better be able to start!!
Before I leaveI meet with our NRCS agent Jeff at 1 pm. We walk the property together, planning for the future. It was seriously windy and towards the end sleet was stinging our faces. Jeff suggested some cool options for creating wildlife habitat on our farm like girdling (killing a tree by cutting through the bark) to make bird and insect habitat, and selecting food producing trees (ie oak) and reducing their competition. I am so excited to really get to know all the plants and creatures at our farm.
After our field walk. I discovered a growing puddle in the basement and dug a channel to the sump pump.
After sending out a desperate email to family, friends, and veritable strangers, pleading for help, I managed to get out the door around 3:30 pm to head to NJ. Jim managed the incoming responses to our plea as I drove. Inclement weather roughed up the ride and my head didn't hit the pillow until 3:30 am.
Wednesday: Up at 6:15 am, with just under 3 hours of sleep, Jim and I set out to meet up with our rag tag crew (Alex, Sam, Bridget, and Lara) at the tow yard. Amazingly, it only takes us five hours to complete our task and we are all wrapped up and eating pizza by 2:30 pm!
Of course, then I realized the trailer lights weren't working and had to stop to get a new adapter.
Today, after a little more sleep, I unpacked the pickup, harvested, updated our mailmerge, and now am writing this long, long email. My brain could do nothing else but list it all for you. Next email, I will share details of one event rather than the outline of all of them.
Jim is en route as I write, Exie the dog is sleeping. A marathon, at a time when we are supposed to collecting our strength and envisioning. But I'll take it!
All our love,
Helen, Jim, and Exie the dog.
Fresh from the hoop!