Sunday, June 29, 2014
Friday, June 27, 2014
Sometimes I love our community so much that I feel like I could just burst. This week has been filled with moments that make me want to give this little town that we live in a big love-squeeze. The other night, we closed out the evening with dinner on the beach. This gorgeous beach is the same one that earlier in the day, we celebrated a friend's Birthday at. Same beach, two times in one day, with a nap in between. At the end of the day, we all agreed that we need more days like this.
Yesterday we continued on our mission to soak up every ounce of summer with a past-bedtime marshmallow roast in the backyard with neighbors. Normally our kids are in bed by 8pm. Last night it was 10pm and it was so right. Many, many days it rains around here and when the sun shines, we are learning to step outside and take full advantage of it. I feel like we're finally in the groove of filling up our sunshine tank for the days when things are less sunny and we need that reserve.
So many nights my husband works late and dinnertime is so far less than ideal, but the nights that he's home, we grab hold of and magnify everything good about them. And so...last night it was marshmallows until the sun was long gone and this morning the house was quiet while the kids slept late.
Today's strawberry picking adventure was the icing on the cake of this community that's so full of goodness that I could almost burst. This local berry farm, Sakuma Bros., opened up their 30 acre berry field for the public to pick for FREE until July 1st. In a public letter, they wrote "this is a small token of appreciation to our loyal supporters and employees."
To me, that seems like the ultimate way to say thank you to a community who truly appreciates their local farmers and it's pretty darn awesome if you ask me.
By the time we headed back to the car, we were covered in mud and stained with berries. Our clothes are presently soaking off the strawberry fields that are caked onto them and my kitchen is cluttered with big bowls of strawberries, waiting to be washed. The funny thing is that we all couldn't be happier.
I would do it all again in a heart beat and we will....maybe even tomorrow.
It was the best morning and our community once again blew me away. Friends, free berries, beautiful farmland. Thank you Sakuma Bros. for your generosity. We truly love where we live.
Wednesday, June 25, 2014
When I wrote on Monday about starting fresh, writing that list of the things that pull me out of survival mode and into that spot that feels intentional and right, these type of adventures went onto that list. Adventures for just us. Spontaneous adventures. Adventures where the kids set the pace, where the agenda isn't mine and where there isn't any expectation. Moments like this remind my why I want to intentionally leave spots open on the calendar and not feel the pressure to sign up for everything---because isn't it so easy to feel like if you aren't doing every class, sport or event, your kids might be missing out on something and later in life, they might not measure up? Ewwww....That's crazy talk.
Yesterday I printed off treasure maps and before we headed out, I had the kids sit down, color their maps and then pack them into a bag that could carry anything interesting that we'd find along the way. Judah was so into this and he excitedly led the way.
Mornings like this are exactly what I want our summer to be filled with. These are our happy place. This is what it feels like to go back and remember where we thrive, to put all comparison aside and do what works best for us right now. And next time, I think I'll bring some chocolate coins to drop into that hole.
A few great sites for free printable treasure maps:
Treasure maps for kids
Treasure Map Coloring Pages
Tuesday, June 24, 2014
So, I decided to throw it out there to the Facebook world that I was looking to buy a used coop, hoping that someone had one they'd like to sell me. Moments later, Emily popped up with one that we could have. Wow, what a fun blessing!
After we got the coop, the kids were super excited to get to work on it and as you can see from Paisley's face below, she was really wanting her chickens NOW.
The next thing we added is a little door and a ramp to let the chickens out into their run. Judah tested it out for his chicks.
For the run, we'd considered building our own, but after a bit or research, we decided on a chain link dog run. This one is 10 feet long. We covered the top of it with chicken wire to keep out animals or an escaping chicken. Below, Eliza was testing out the run for us. Don't worry, the chickens hadn't been in there yet.
After that, we immediately wrapped the first couple feet up from the ground with 1/4 inch wire. We actually dug this wire into the ground a few inches, to have it extra secure and since then, we haven't had a problem. The chain link works great, but I'd highly recommend adding this smaller wire around the base as well.
Right now, we use wood shavings inside the coop for bedding and whenever I clean it out, I add a bunch of fresh lavender, rosemary and mint to the new bedding.
So here is our little coop. Hope you enjoyed the tour!
The Chicken Chick- She's my favorite.
Backyard Chickens- Another great source of information.