Monday, July 18, 2011

Where we are... where we're going!

The boytwin, learning science!
This truly has been a very wonderful summer, so far. Sis and the kids have spent much of their time at the beach, sometimes with me and sometimes on their own. We've been to a science museum in Springfield, MA where the kids got to see life size dinosaurs, live animals, and lots of stuff on geology and plate tectonics. The children have been very much children this summer. They've run around in bathing suits the vast majority of the time, and have gone into the house each night covered in bug bites and dust or mud depending on the weather. They've been exhausted and smiling and full of fresh air and sunshine!

Sis, clowning around.
There has been a lot of paperwork to do in regards to our (hopefully) new home. We've made a bid on a place which is a bit farther away from church and sis's work than we wanted, but is much closer to where Gray can work and also right on a nice, local beach. It's "in town" but fairly private because of the layout of the land. It's a LOT smaller than we wanted (less than an acre), but I am taking heed of the inspiration gathered from other bloggers (you know who you all are!) who garden and feed their families on much smaller lots. There's room for fruit trees and raised beds, and that's what counts, right?

The author, hard at work...
It's our hope to be moved in and settled by August 15th, which may be hoping for too much, but what the heck. If you shoot for the moon, at least if you miss you'll fall among the stars! Time is pretty crunched, but we're trying to be ready for anything. I'm at the parsonage, but sis and Gray are still at the old house, and they have to be out by August 1st. This could cause some minor havoc, but we're managing. We really hope that timing will work itself out and everything will come together seamlessly. Of course we're also preparing for the worst. There's no sense setting ourselves up for failure, after all!

The backhoe at work.
In the process of preparing to move our things to a new home, we're also preparing to store certain things for an unknown length of time. Since we don't know for sure what our moving date will be (or even whether we will get this house... it's still a guessing game!), we're preparing a site on our friends' land to hold one of those temporary garage shelters. Into this we will place all our boxed goods, minus the few things we need to survive until we move in. The start of this process is once again using the handy backhoe to clear and level a place. This has, as you can see, included moving some rather large stumps out of our way...

Moving debris out of the way.
Thank heavens Gray is well versed in using his big boy toy by now. He's gotten to the point where stumps like the one pictured above come popping out of the ground seemingly without any work on his part. He's taken out a couple of stumps that literally caused the backhoe to tip backwards, its front (steering) wheels completely off the ground by two or more feet! Luckily, he's pretty good at recovering from such things. With his capable hands at the controls, the big field of messy sticks and stumps left behind by messy loggers has become a clear and mostly level spot with a gravel road leading right to it, one which our van and any truck can navigate with ease. Now we just have to put gravel onto our "foundation" and level it, and we'll be ready to install our shelter and move our things!

So much is going on, but almost all of it is up in the air right now. Our first tomato is growing, and I'm hopeful we might actually get a few from our potted "garden". Only a handful of peppers and the potted tomatoes survived, unfortunately, so that's our whole harvest for this summer. I'm disappointed, but I'm also looking at this as an opportunity to spent the autumn and winter preparing for a well-planned and laid out garden next spring and summer.

I'll leave you with this wonderful video of our girltwin, learning how to use the great big backhoe!