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6/17/13

Modern Prefab Home Counts Bookcases And Blessings

One night this week, the 10yr old paused: "I really appreciate our life."
I do too.

It has been 1+ year living off grid, in the unfinished modern prefab home, on an undersized solar system. It sounds like a recipe for disaster. We think it's ingredients for great life. The tree frogs and whippoorwill began to call, and night insects shook loudly, rattling. We drifted off to sleep.

The replacement window for the shot-out-by-a-bb-gun energy efficient window for the off grid prefab house still, yes, sits in the corner...
AND YOU THOUGHT WE WERE DESIGNER-Y PEOPLE.
We are life people, and life has been busy at the off grid SIP house!!!!
Bantam rooster.
With an ENERGY EFFICIENT PREFAB...

My thoughts on green building and energy efficiency this week revolve around a rooster.
I'm going to tell this quick story and then bore you with lots of moments of the farm, and family. So skip ahead with me, to the end of the week, when, for a wedding and a funeral (don't they make movies out of weekends like that?), we brought EVERYONE to Richmond. When we say everyone, that means Pipsqueaks, Shop Dawgs, Feral Cats... numerous hens, a baby chick...
AND A BANTAM ROOSTER.

I'm a good neighbor. I had a plan.
I forgot I have been living in a SIP house... with energy efficient, hence severely-sound-muffling, windows... much less thickly insulated walls and roof...

"I'll just throw him in the basement, no one will hear him!"
At 5a.m. Saturday, from the basement, our house resonated with an exuberant CROW. Then, another. Wake up world, Huffy The Rooster is home!

"HOLY LAMOLEY! These original windows are so thin, it's like there's just a pane o' glass between that rooster and our neighbors!" ["CROOOOOOOOOW!"] "HOLY LAMOLEY! This cute original foursquare home's walls are so, uh, original walls, you can hear that rooster RIGHT THROUGH THE HOUSE!"
I panicked.
I grabbed the rooster, threw him in his travelling box, and SHUT THAT ROOSTER INTO THE LINEN CLOSET. Hey. It was one more set o' walls, honeychiles, one more set o' walls. In the dark, Huffy The Rooster grew quiet. We slept until 7.

"Momma? Where's my brush?" "In the linen closet." "What's a linen closet?" "It's the closet with the rooster."

But back to our week at Higher Ground, at the off grid prefab house!
Our baby bantam chick Ping Pong took a first dust bath.

We had a play date, and 'round here, sheep shearing can be had at a play date...
"Ok, I'm cooler now!"
I made the first tomato sammich of the season, from the first ripe 'maters from our yard.

The spring and summer vegetables are coming in, and many days, you will find us literally eating out of our meager, needs soil amending, garden.

We Had A Riding Incident.
Thursday morning, I did groundwork with Jax, and M. said, "Get on!" I had a funny feeling. A big storm was coming, but the sky was still blue. M. is an eventer. She is The Most Amazing Horsewoman.
 
Jax had yielded his hindquarters, but... I was uneasy. "Do you want me to ride him?" M asked, brightly. "Ok!" She got on. They proceeded to correctly snake around the roundpen, as we spoke about Things One Does With Green Horses Differently Than A Made Horse, we were chatting at this point, when... Jax bucked. M. giggled. Then he bucked and bucked... Her face became intent. He bucked and bucked and bucked and bucked going 'round the ring! Bucking bronco style!

PICTURE A PERCHERON-ARABIAN... BUCKING BRONCO STYLE!!!!!

M. flew through the air. To see someone so good... come off MY horse like that... I'll let M. tell you, in her own words:
"Gunna be sore tomorrow.... I was able to stay on for a whole lap around the round pen on Jax while he was bucking, then realised I was not going to get him to stop with a one rein stop, had enough time to plan my departure... and bailed!!! My plan was to land on my shoulder and do the tuck and roll, but he slid to a stop and cut me short. I landed on my left hip, popping it out of the joint, then sat up and popped it back in!!!! And good god did it hurt like a female dog.. . Lol!!! Poor Copeland... I think I scared her half to death!!! Along with kiddo #2, who ran to the house, shaking, for extra help.... "
I'm still shaking.
What I learned today is that I would rather see MY life flash in front of me than someone ELSE's life flash in front of me. And thank God M. is ok.
I am searching my heart. Thankfully we have a great horse community here, with lots of expert resources. It's a hard time, for us.


Weather hit over our off grid house.
As it quickly approached, I did not like the look of the way the sky roiled.
I did not like "that" sound the storm made.
I watch clouds form "fingers" dipping down... frightening.
When it roared, I put the children in the bathroom and rued not having a root cellar.

The next day, debris was strewn on roads, but thankfully no tornadoes, and everyone ok.

So... we headed out.
I was planning on just going to the Amish store to pick up some jam, so, knowing my Amish friend cares less about what I ever look like, went, with muck-splattered jeans, unshowered, hair unbrushed, thinking, "Eh, I won't see anyone except Lydia"- but it wasn't open yet. 

So we headed down the street to the Produce Auction and saw basically Every. Single. Friend. I. Have. Here...!
[Eep! Ha...]
Produce auction bonus? You get to see your friends and trade a few things with each other so the produce is more varied! I bought a box of artichokes but now have the box of artichokes, 2 cabbage, 3 zucchini and 5 squash! It is so good to eat so well, locally.

We are seeing family this week so I will serve the artichokes then; with the cabbage I'll make slaw, the zucchini a raw salad (paper thin slices of zucchini + parmesean + toasted pine nuts tossed with olive oil, s&p, and nasturtium flowers if you have 'em), I will sautee the squash with onions and serve that, and suddenly you have fed a big family crowd easily with fresh veggies for a week! Taaaaa daaaa!

Speaking of family, we attended a very special family wedding.
Good people is all what life is about.
And then I went to a funeral, a Celebration Of Life. I am processing it all, but what I know is this: LOVE. Be kind. Humor helps, but even more, just... be a good friend. All these people were surrounded with love, passing it on in the celebration of a new marriage, a passing of life, memorialized in the community they created.

Reading Club:
Owning Two of a Certain Object Indicates Your Kids Will Do Well in School.
Can You Guess What It Is?: bit.ly/13GLmO5
I decided to count the bookcases in the modern prefab home.
We build nooks and crannies for books and what not wherever there is a space:
According to this article, I guess we're gonna be ok.


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