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Counting my blessings

I find myself in a halfway place, and what a wonderful place to be! As I slowly work toward my own ranch, I realize that I am blessed to live in a place that I can practice homesteading. I am stocked up on food for months to come, any baking or preserving I want to do is at my fingertips. While working through my business plan questionnaire the other day, I realized that I was already practicing….

I am blessed to have a place to garden, and a resourceful husband. Between the two of us we are constantly coming across great garden and craft finds for very cheap or free. I have been under the impression that I am not enough person to get enough stuff made to justify spending money on renting a farmers market booth, until I made a list yesterday of everything I thought I could inventory throughout the winter. I can make plenty of stuff to sell at a farmers market booth. I have tons of supplies on hand and am always searching for great craft finds and dollar sales at the craft store. My favorite are dollar pattern sales! I am planning to create a diversified inventory over the course of this winter so that I can try to earn a little in the spring. If I can continue to find low cost beads and fabric, I should be able to put most money I earn into a rescue ranch fund to start working toward a permanent place where I can build whatever type of garden beds I want to, and plant trees wherever I like.

I am blessed to have an awesome family, who support me in whatever wild goose chase I might run off on, and for believing in me even when I have a hard time believing in myself. I have six wonderful pets, and I am blessed to have them in my life.

I am the luckiest girl in the world. It seems that all around me, people are struggling through hardships and frustrations. I feel like I finally get to just relax and enjoy some of life finally. I guess all those years that I said that I believed that there had to be balance in the grand scheme of things, and that since my childhood sucked, I would be blessed in the second half of my life, maybe I was on to something. At the time it was just a coping mechanism, but I did truly believe it. With the technology age we are in, I am not sure if I still believe there is balance, after all, the scales will have to tip eventually. However, I am gonna take my chances and enjoy what I have got for the time being.

I struggle a little, the answer seems so easy. Jesus. It kills me to see my friends struggling and suffering and saying “Why me?”, or “I just wanna be happy”. I want to tell them that they can be, that they just have to open their hearts….but they just look at me with an “I’m glad that worked for you” kind of look, and it breaks my heart! It’s funny how people tell me that they have read the Bible and that there are things they just don’t buy, or things that go against their beliefs. As a young Christian, I was afraid to ask what things they could possibly be talking about. Have you ever met anyone who just read the Bible and got it? How many people can read the Bible straight through and think they understood it? Whenever someone tells me that they read the Bible and that there are things they don’t believe to be true and just, I will have to assume that they have never STUDIED the Bible and that I can help them understand, at least from a human perspective. When people do have an argument, at least in my juvenile years as a Christian, I have found that it is some stereotype of what someone says or thinks the Bible says, whether they read a verse without understanding, or whether it was hearsay (ex. women should submit to their men). Did they not get the part about how men are supposed to treat a woman, and that he should hear her opinion, but someone has to make the final call? Nowhere in the Bible does it say that men should treat women terribly while they wait on their husbands hand and foot. It doesn’t say we should be beaten down and treated like doormats with a smile on our faces.

What I see in the Bible are examples of how poor the human spirit is without God. I see people who make mistakes in their lives, and some of them are HUGE! It matters not, as our dear Savior loves us all the same amount, as long as we trust in Him. I hear people tell me about how they have lost faith in God for this reason or that reason, but it seems to me that those are the very reasons we are to have faith.

Death seems to make people question God.  This is bizarre to me! How is it that you can believe in God, know that death is inevitable, and then when someone we love dies, you question God? Why? Did you think it you and your loved ones were exempt from death of the physical body? Do you think that because you believe you should be exempt from the selfish pain that comes with losing a loved one? Truly, it is selfish, especially if loved one is saved. I can imagine being heart broken over losing a loved one who was not saved, but over a believer, that is just ridiculous. After all, as a Christian, is that not the goal? To serve my Lord wholeheartedly until the time when He calls me home to Him. We grieve because we will miss that person in our lives, not because they have suffered some kind of loss. They, after all, have just been awarded a vacation in eternity.

It feels like people want to cling to their sadness and misery. I remember being in a place so low I had no idea how I would ever climb out or that rut, but I was determined to keep climbing until I could see the light, and what a light! I talk to people now, in whom I recognize a lot of my past trials and lessons. I feel sad that so many have an”I can’t” or an”I won’t” or a “what will it matter attitude”.

I have one friend who is afraid of Christianity because she believes that she will go to hell if she sins. I had a lovely conversation with her the other day about it. Thankfully, she is much more open minded and positive, and even through very negative questions and perceptions, was willing to listen to me talk about the joy that comes into you when the Holy Spirit fills you! She listened to me tell her that I believe that we are all sinners and that no one is better(or Holier than though) than anyone else, aside from being saved and knowing Jesus. She listened for hours while I answered her questions to the best of my ability. It was truly a blessing, as the day before I had been sobbing and begging the Lord to work on her heart. Imagine my surprise when she came to me the next day, full of questions, and telling me that she knew it was coming, she just hadn’t had the “big epiphany” yet. I tried my hardest to explain to her that the only sin that will truly condemn you to hell is not believing. That the whole point is that Jesus saved us from our sins and that as long as we trust, repent and live in Him, we are saved. I think she might have really gotten it for the very first time. I hope she comes to church with me soon.

I am so full of joy and blessings. It really is pretty simple once you grasp the concept. Oh how I long for my loved ones to finally understand!   Have a blessed day!

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The calling?

After looking back at my last two weeks, I find myself being called to face the Rocky Mountain Rescue Ranch earnestly. I suppose I should give you all a background on what exactly, the RMRR is. Several years ago, I was in a terrible place. Rock Bottom, I would say. I was a single mother, doing all I could to survive, and raising a child whom, unbeknownst to me, had several neurological and sleep disorders. I was bright, driven, and hard-working, yet I never seemed to be able to make anything work out. No matter how hard I tried I just kept failing. Someone finally recognized some of my sons symptoms and suggest that I get him tested, so I did. Wow, that opened a whole world of perspective for me. Meanwhile, I had developed a great mentorship relationship with a lovely Christian elder whom I could not get enough of. I didn’t understand his Christian views but he never condemned me or told me I was going to hell, and we developed a wonderful bond. Our daily conversations came to an abrupt end when I had to leave the ranch job unexpectedly. He and I still maintain contact, but much, much less frequently. He did, however, change my heart. When my child was diagnosed and I was in a real need of help, I went to a local church a couple times because I could not justify asking them for help without actually understanding and trying to believe in their God. What I found was salvation.

The people in this church were not like the people in churches I had been to in my childhood. They were amazing. So full of love and uplifting words. I could not believe that these near strangers seemed to care so much for me.   I went home after visiting this church twice, sat at the foot of my bed crying, and put my hands up as I told God that I give up. I am tired of fighting and I can’t do this myself anymore so I was giving it all to Him, and trusting Him with my life. My next question was “what now?” and the video slide show that played in my head is beyond description with words, so here I sit today, convinced that I know exactly what God wants me to do with my life. I also wonder how He expects little ole me, single mommy with no assets, to get this immensely huge project accomplished. I have faith, though, that He can make anything happen. It is clear how my past and my experiences have prepared me for this venture, but financially….how?

So, I started doing some research, and every time I got discouraged, I swept the idea under the rug for a few weeks and delved into some other project. I am overwhelmed at the idea of creating this ranch for my dear Lord, but I am also thrilled at the notion.

This week, I believe that He has directed me to focus. I believe He has told me that it is time for me to focus on slowly and steadily creating His ranch, and so, this week I start the Business plan. It is overwhelming and tedious. I have to think through the boring black and white of it, and when I get to a hard question, I want to just close it up and fantasize about the fun stuff, but I am slowly and diligently working away at it, and praying He keeps me strong, focused, creative, and resourceful. I intend to share my journey with you as I trudge through the muck of a business plan and joys of creating this little safe haven in Montana. I hope you find as much pleasure in my upcoming travels as I do, and I hope you may be able to gain from my trials, errors, and triumphs. I will begin to post some of my research and lessons as I go…..I have finally grasped the concept of God’s humor, and I hope He doesn’t use me too much for your enjoyment, but I am happy to share both the good and the bad. Hopefully everyone can take away a tidbit from my journey. Welcome friends.

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Blueberry muffins

Tonight, I went to allrecipes.com and found a recipe called “to die for blueberry muffins”. They are cooling on the stove right now and I can’t wait to try one! I harvested my first radish of the season and a baby carrot that really was premature but I wanted to call it a baby carrot for harvest sake. Also made some pudding pops…remember those. They were so yummy. I can only hope my homemade ones are as good. I am still in that weird daydreamy place. I so desperately wish that the sun would come out and stay or at least some heat. My poor veggies are drowning. I am in serious need of sunlight. I just don’t function well when the sun doesn’t show. I am having no problem making lists of things I want or need to accomplish….what I am having trouble with is following through with those lists. I have garden stuff, household projects and chores, and paperwork type responsibilities, and really, I just want to daydream about future ownership of land. I cannot imagine how to get there, just have faith that God has a plan for the Rescue Ranch. I have no desire to do the little projects and tasks because I am focused on the big picture…I am sure that if I could focus on those small projects, maybe I could get to that homestead. I am quite ambitious about the urban homesteading but I really look forward to the Rescue Ranch being in operation. I look forward to a reason to be up early in the morning. I love early mornings but it is way to easy to hit snooze when there are no immediate responsibilities. It’s pretty amazing when I look back at how the little details all point to ranch skills. I could never have seen that in my future years ago. I look forward to doing God’s work on a business level. Really, I think I feel like I need a purpose bigger than what I feel I have now, and that I long for the stay at home mom with a job role. I want a purpose bigger than my tiny little family. I long for the opportunity to show others the love of Jesus through caring and compassionate works. Not because I have to but because I wish that everyone could feel the quiet joy that comes from loving Jesus and understanding unconditional love. I look forward to hostessing a Bible study group at the rescue ranch one night a week, and a clothing closet for people in need. I look forward to helping those who need help find their way, and hopefully watching others fall in love with God the way I have. I am really excited about getting together a group of volunteers and dropping off fresh veggie boxes to those in need… I am excited and focused on the future. How do I focus on now so I can get to the future?

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Daydreaming

Oh it’s so late and I should be in bed, but I am in this daydreamy place and I can’t seem to get my thoughts to quit whirlin’ so I guess I am going to daydream here for a bit. It starts with just one simple thought about my new plants that just arrived, and it spirals into a web of daydreams so entangles that I can barely sort it all out. I think of a bigger greenhouse, and permanent fruit beds…..trees, bushes. I start to think about a day when I can build a hoophouse that is large enough to garden in, rather than my little, great place to start seeds early, greenhouse. Then I start thinking about how much that will cost and how to get there. That takes me to a place where I start dwelling on writing a book and making up my garden planners. Thinking of writing a book and designing my garden planners takes me back to a place where I am daydreaming about buying a home again. Its a vicious cycle. Buying a home makes me think of the wonderful garden I will have one day, and the cute little garden shed I will buy, and the larger greenhouse and sunrooms…..

Permanence. This place is temporary. I don’t think we will live here forever, and every time I plant a bush or other perennial in the ground I wonder how long we will live here, on this rented piece of property. I wonder if we will move in the spring or fall and if I will have to leave them all behind. I think of it as training time. By the time I have my little plot of owned land, I will have lots of gardening skills. This rain may never stop, and then it won’t matter anyway, cause if things keep going this way, I wont be able to garden much longer anyway. I have responsibilities that I cannot focus on because I just want want get to that place so badly. I imagine it is like when you desperately want your baby to walk, only to realize time goes to fast and you want them little again. I used to daydream about a ranch full of animals, but that dream has changed slightly. I dream of a ranch on which I can house animals in addition to doing whatever other work God chooses for me. The Rocky Mountain Rescue Ranch is going to be a beautiful thing. I believe it is what God has planned for me. Unfortunately I think I have to write a book to get it and I am in no place to do that at the moment. Well, I may be, but if so, I am having a heck of a time focusing on it. I think I am supposed to write a book about shame. I have also been asked to write a book on raising children with PTSD. Oh now that is a high bar….I am feeling a little unworthy of that task, but the therapist who asked me must have had some faith in me.  I can imagine sitting on my porch in my rocker writing to my hearts content. I cannot imagine the other order. My whole life I pictured going down a road that led me to a little secluded piece of land where I could write. I never imagined writing would be the path to that piece of solitude, but recently it seems to have been presented to me that that is indeed the answer.

I don’t know how to make myself do the research. There is always something else to do. I have tried scheduling in writing times, but just cant seem to stay focused on the task at hand. Writers block….better labeled researchers block? I guess I should pray about it. I was quite focused in the beginning, but now it is hard to prioritize time for research and writing. I love to do research about all types of stuff….

I earn a little money here and there doing stuff like babysitting, but this is the first time in my life I have been a stay at home mom and dependent on someone else’s income. That is difficult for me. I have been fairly self sufficient most of my life. It is good for me to earn a little, but what I really want is to earn enough to make a difference. I have spent the last twenty years trying to figure out how to become self sufficient with my many skills. It seems as though you have to specialize in one thing to make enough money to go out and buy big houses to do God’s work, and I often feel like my crafts and writing are nothing, never gonna get me there. Other times I really think I can earn enough money doing things like creating, that will get us there slowly but surely (that is the only real way to get ahead right?). I was always taught, easy come, easy go, so I assume that I am not gonna win a lottery (I suppose you gotta play to win). I get so distracted when I start trying to figure out what to do next…

My house has taken forever to make sense of, but it is finally getting there. I have been successfully managing chores and gardening, and it gets better everyday. Now if I could just get baking, crafts, and writing in there, I would have some completeness going on, and be earning. My “new” husband and I are finally, after almost a year, learning how to live together. It has been an uphill battle but we grow closer everyday. It is amazing how different two people can be and still be so in love with each other. As each day goes by, and I get better at managing a whole family rather than just my child and I. Each day, my husband and I get better at understanding and reading each other. It even occurred to me the other day that I might want to go back to college. I have not had that thought in such a long time. It was right outta left field. I don’t think so though…not right now anyway.

I wish I could get all the things done every day that I want to. I think I need to go back to writing my nightly lists before bed so that I can focus on the next day and work through some of the projects that I have been procrastinating. I am having the hardest time focusing. I hung all the chore charts so hubby and son could help keep the house clean, but that seems to have robbed me of the precious lists that I have become so dependent on in my lifetime. I am gonna go write a list for tomorrow. ‘ Night

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The trees are here!

Yay! My fruit trees have arrived. I could not be more excited. Altogether I ordered a Banana, Lime, Orange, Lemon, Tangerine, Pomegranate, and Several Cherry trees and bushes…all of the dwarf variety. They arrived today, while I was bandaging my poor dogs feet, which he managed to rip the pads off of playing ball obsessively in the rain the other day. Poor guy can’t walk now and has flaps of foot hanging off. Anyway, I got them all sorted out and planted the babies into some pots. Gotta go get the Nanners out of the greenhouse. It is still too cold here for them poor things. Well, gonna go research my new fruit trees. Progress to come.

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Feeling Drippy

Ugh! Today is a weather day. It has been rainy and dreary here now for months…..Not to mention that last summer and the summer before were also both quite wet and dreary. If I wanted to live in the rain forest I would have moved to Washington for Pete’s sake! Our ground is so waterlogged that most of the seeds won’t even germinate, not to mention, in these mountain altitudes, when there is no sun, there is little heat. So this week we get fifty degree days and rain. I looked at the ten day forecast yesterday and Tuesday, June 14th is the next day they have predicted sun! My poor, poor peppers and tomatoes do not know what to do with all of this stinkin rain!

A couple days of clouds quickly steals the ambition right out from under me and I just want to cover my head till the sun comes out…..

Blue light receptors or something…. nonetheless, I get a bit grumpy and cynical when the sun hides for days. Oh, don’t get me wrong.  I have plenty of drive and motivation, but a complete lack of ambition and focus. I can make lists all day long of the things I want to accomplish despite the dreary weather, but when I look at them and pick a chore, I wander aimlessly around avoiding any real projects.

We have it much better than ND. Those poor folks are drowning in our runoff….. My prayers are with ya folks! We ALL want it to STOP RAINING!  Anymore it seems like all April showers bring, is more May showers, and June Showers…is it ever gonna stop?

Tomorrow is my son’s last day of school for the year. I look forward to some quality time with him this summer. The other day he told me that his best friend (who attends church with us), has decided that he believes in the Egyptian gods, and that he is sad because he really wants his friend to remember Jesus before the end comes. He is worried about missing his friend in heaven. Is that not a sweet thought from a twelve year old boy? All I can do is pray for his dear friend, and hope he finds his way back. Children are so amazing!

I can’t wait for this blog to grow into a large enough domain that I actually have a reason to make tabs, and keep track of the seasons. I sure wish the weather would dry up enough for me to go out and get some photos. I did take some of the front bed, which is going to be a perennial bed. Before pictures from last week. I have since dropped several pots of perennial herb seeds down into the soil, of which, a few have germinated. We might get a spot of sun tomorrow, I will try for some new photos of the herb pots pre growth.

Before I was a Christian, long long before, I often spent time online reading blogs about crafts, sustainable living, and gardening. It seems like I felt like I was constantly coming across Christian sustainability web pages and blogs. By this I mean web pages published or blogs maintained by Christians who are mostly or completely self sufficient. Off the grid I suppose. Now, I go looking for those blogs and I cannot find much. What’s up with that?

My boy wants meatloaf…I want to be lazy, meatloaf it is then. Funny how much you will do for your children. I take way better care of him than I do myself. I insist he eat healthy meals when I can barely stomach them (or maybe chew, can’t wait to get these stinkin teeth fixed). I insist he have a sleep routine when I cannot establish one. I insist he go to the dentist, while I myself procrastinate…. hmmm? Whats up with that?

I am the volunteer coordinator for the local Spay/Neuter task force. Three times a year we hold a local event during which we Spay/Neuter almost two hundred low-income animals for free. I live for this event. It puts some worth into my otherwise, somewhat boring life. This particular event, we happened to schedule for what appears to be vacation week. Five of my regular volunteers have called me to tell me that they will be on vacation for that week! Oh Crap!   Not quite in panic mode but not really comfortable either!

I find that i go through a cycle of feeling both blessed by where I am in life and how far I have come, and feeling quite stagnant. It really feels, sometimes, like my life is just a series of naps, chores, and snacks. I desperately wish that my husband and son would help me keep our house clean without me having to get angry or sad. Most of the time when I get angry or sad, they help me out for a day or two, and then right back to the same old routine. I clean all week, and then we trash the place on weekends. It sucks to feel like I have no real worth except to clean up and feed after my husband and son. I want to garden and craft and write a book. I want to take my dogs to the park on a routine basis. Ugh! I want some help. How many housewives feel this way? And yet, as meaningless as it all seems some days, I feel more blessed than I ever have…..Hmmm. Whats up with that?   I gotta go make meatloaf!

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Rain Rain go away

My goodness, we have had some serious moisture this spring. We have successfully flooded ND with all of our snowmelt. I have had this raging infection in my jaw due to an abscessed tooth! Mouth pain has got to be the worst. I have had the hardest time focusing this week. I got some new seeds, and this great greenhouse, but I can’t bring myself to go out in the wind and rain to garden with this stupid face ache. I find that the more I read and learn about gardening, the more I want to try and the more I want to grow. I have some nasty little army worms that have effectively destroyed one of my Columbine plants this week, but tomorrow, when all threat of rain has passed, they are doomed. I have not been able to get myself excited about the garden this week through the cloud that has come with this infection. I look forward to a bright sunny weekend that is pretty well devoid of obligations other than gardening. I got some cool Cauliflower that I have never seen before, and picked up a few seeds that I had barely heard of before this spring. I also ordered my fruit trees for indoor container gardening the other night. I am so incredibly excited about the prospect of growing fruit in my living room. I have also become aware of how much fruit grows naturally in Montana. I wonder why more people don’t grow fruit here? I need to go to bed. I always find myself at the computer late at night. I am just waiting for the ibuprofen to kick in and the throb to come down to a dull roar. In the am I will have been on antibiotics for twenty four hours and should start to feel some improvement.  I am going to try and get some good garden pictures over the weekend and load them to the blog, so I can share my excitement. Have a great night all, and Happy Gardening!

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R.I.P Stevia….and it was doing so well

I mourn the loss of my Stevia plants with a frustration and irritation. I have read all over the place that Stevia is hard to grow from seed, however, after searching for almost a month to find some seeds locally, I purchased a pack of ten measly seeds for almost four dollars! Are you kidding me, these things must be like gold. At that same time I also purchased a pack of Spearmint seeds, which for some reason, are also incredibly difficult to come by in this region. To my dismay, the Spearmint also contained very few seeds. I planted my little seeds and diligently cared for them as they sprouted and grew. As I read more I learned how lucky I was to have four strong little seedlings from those ten seeds I planted, and nearly all of the Spearmint seeds had germinated and I think I had eight or ten baby Spearmint plants as well. Tonight, the dumb-arse cat that I am cat-sitting, knocked down and killed all of those healthy little seedlings. They are smashed behind a greenhouse table and a window and any attempt I make to rescue them is going to result in their complete demise….so I must say so long, and hopefully I will find these seeds again. (clearance season on seeds, so I will rush out tomorrow and hope they are not all gone). I am irritated by a general lack of respect for my plants and garden by my visiting pets parents. Every single time someone brings a dog to my house, a plant gets destroyed. Now the visiting cat is joining the torture. I love animals so much, but I am tempted to just ask people to leave their animals home at this rate. Today alone, two different visiting pets managed to destroy over twenty five seedlings….Grr….Argh! How do I get my friends to understand how frustrating that is, how much time, energy, and money I put into raising those little things? I cannot get that time back. There is nothing I can do about the lost Brussels Sprouts and Stevia plants. I really put a lot of heart into them and as they are destroyed, I don’t think it’s cute the way your dog is standing in my raised bed! Please manage your pets or leave them home! Well, there is always next year I guess. I do still have a patient part of my that thinks maybe I can try purchasing greenhouse plants of theses varieties yet for this year, but they are so much more expensive, and so much less gratifying!

On a happier note, I had a fantastic day building gardening planners for one of my girlfriends and I. They started out identical, and we are gonna sit down and compare them in a year to see how we have modified them. I think that will be quite interesting really. I put in a few pertinent charts, and made is realistic for outside use by placing everything in sheet protectors. She was pretty excited to get hers, and I started prettying mine up as soon as I had a chance.

I am anxious for the holiday weekend to come and go. I am hoping that with the onset of the last frost date, we will also receive some good, hot, sunny weather. We have a gutter leak that drowned some of my little Cherry tomato babies the last two days. I hope they dry out. So far they are hanging in there, but if we don’t get some sun soon, they are gonna wither and dye. I am anxious to get out to the beds and finish up my planting in the next couple of weeks, and I look forward to experimenting with the greenhouse and succesion planting. Well, I guess that’s it for now, it’s late and I should be sleeping. ‘night.

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Gardening on my mind

I can’t get myself motivated for these menial indoor tasks. It has been raining for two months, it seems…..
Floods are everywhere and I have no ambition to do indoor chores. My greenhouse is finally erected and I cannot really do much outdoors. The last couple of weeks have been quite busy in the garden, when I get a break in the clouds. I cannot wait for it to warm up some so I can spend full days in the sun; so that my plants can get a break from some of this rain, and enjoy some of the hot Montana sun that they so love.
I spend countless rainy hours searching for solutions to my ant problem. They are not fire ants, but they are everywhere! I cannot figure out how to get rid of them, and I have yet to see an anthill. I have tried countless things, so far Grants Kills Ants have been the most successful thing, but they are hard to find around here. Cinnamon seemed to do the trick when I spread it over my garden, but when I pulled up my radishes, I was quite dismayed to see that the ants had just gone under the soil. Alas, they eat my radishes every year without fail! I have moved the radishes, I have sprayed pesticides (much to my dismay), I have tried soap and water. Nothing seems to work. As far as I can tell I don’t have any sign of Aphids (I read that Aphids attract ants and that to get rid of the aphids would solve the ant problem). I have a new organic trick I read about as a general pesticide. It is a concoction of onion and garlic that I chopped up and put in a milk jug with water. I let it sit for a week and strained it, but it has not stopped raining long enough for me to apply it. Also, it seems I would have to make quite a lot of this to soak my whole garden (as there do not seem to be any areas free of ants). I guess I have to stick with good ole grants stakes for now and hope I can find something natural to replace it with, or at least something that I have easier access to. I have just established a large garden, nearly free, thanks to my very resourceful husband, who was able to score me some really good used potting soil that I could improve some of my very clayey soil with. He was also able to get me some shipping crates that we were able to fill with some of this same free soil and square off for raised square foot beds. I have spent endless hours scouring books and the internet looking for frugal gardening ideas. I was also lucky enough to get a small greenhouse for mothers day from my wonderful son and husband. I am in garden heaven…with one exception, everything is flooded and we are looking at seven days of forecasted rain. In the course of this blog, I hope to share my adventures and learning experiences as a relatively “baby” gardener. As each season progresses, I become more and more interested in the details involved with gardening. I learn more about pests and disease, companion planting and crop seasons. This year I add a greenhouse to the mix. The adventure ahead of me is so exciting! For as long as I can remember, I have daydreamed about my little place in the country. I have wondered and waited and hoped and dreamed, but never imagined it would come true before me. Today, I sit here, on the edge of the country, looking at the flood in the cow pasture, and think how far I have come form those young city girl aspirations. I revel in the many blessings which I am surrounded by, and thank God for the many blessings and opportunities that have come my way! Today I realize that I have started my journey to self sustainability, or at least have learned to walk and taken a baby step or two. I hope to build this blog into a wealth of frugal information and curious journey. Won’t you meander with me, as I learn how to turn my semi-rural yard into a productive garden? I intend to learn to garden and harvest proficiently. I intend to process and preserve my harvest. I intend to live off of this bounty for most of the winter, and God willing, my husband has a good hunting season, we shall eat fairly inexpensively for the next several seasons. I love the idea of making homemade gifts out of garden goodies (like veggie baskets and herb vinegars and oils). I intend to gift seedlings to friends not blessed with greenhouses, and maybe one day when I can expand my little greenhouse I can consider farmers market as a way to share the wealth as well. I find myself daydreaming of the endless possibilities that this little greenhouse has opened up for me. I intend to square foot garden and container garden on this tiny little piece of land that I have available to me for now. I am greatly interested in growing a large perennial bed of herbs and I am also completely enthralled at the idea of companion planting and organic procedures. Frugal by nature, I love finding great ideas and sharing them with others. I can’t wait to share them with you! When the weather is less than pleasant, I love to work on my numerous craft projects and writing is always a favorite pastime. I find much more time for these activities in the winter, which can be quite long in Montana. For now, the clouds have dissipated and I find myself called to the garden, until next time…