Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Our local Christmas tree...

Doesn't get much more local (practically within walking distance of our current location) or organic (no chemicals, ever). And it was also fun!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Visions of... alpacas... dancing in my head

I haven't had much to say lately, at least nothing I was ready to share here. The truth is, I'm not any less committed to living a locally-based, sustainable lifestyle. If anything, I'm more committed. But... and it's a big 'but' (there's another big butt to discuss, but I'll leave that one for later!) I'm finding it hard to execute. My life is dominated by a 40+ hour job that keeps me locked in an office in front of a computer all day (barely seeing, much less experiencing nature) and the kicker is the commute. At 52 miles one way, I'm spending between 2 1/2 - 3 hours in the car each day. On the low end, I'm losing 12 hours in the car each week and on the high, it's 15. By the time I get home, I'm wasted. I'm lucky if I can motivate myself to put together any dinner. Even frozen pizza seems difficult some nights.

I'm deeply dissatisfied with the routine, with the job, with our current lifestyle. I'm spending long hours dreaming the far away dream of our future country-house-turned farm. Like so many other people who thought they were doing the right thing, we bought our home. It's a nice little house in a pretty nice neighborhood. And it's worth roughly 70% of what we owe on it. Moving isn't an option unless we receive a giant inheritance from a long-lost relative. I won't be holding my breath for that.

So we're stuck here, and I can't get my head back in the game. Living and working here, if we are focused, we can save a good deal of money towards the future. Towards the house and land I'm dreaming of. And somewhere along the way, we can hopefully figure out how we can make a living in this future life of ours. But knowing we can't have it now, or even in the short term future, it's driving me batty. In my mind, I'm adding more and more animals to our future. In addition to the chickens and goats, now I'm thinking sheep and alpacas. Of course, we'll need dogs. While we're at it, maybe we should breed some. Nevermind that I know next to nothing about these animals. I've got time to learn!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Add it to the list

I have a growing list of things that I want and need from our future home. I'm adding to it today... A Bulgarian Shepard (or Karakachan). A big, protective working farm dog.

And how cute is he?

Photo credit and a local breeder.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

December already?

I really don't know where this year has gone! Here we are in the home stretch...

Our little neighborhood got its first snow of the season over the weekend. It was pretty pitiful though - it rained most of the day before turning to snow. This time of year usually has me missing the Colorado winters, and it's no exception this year. Not only can Colorado cope with snow (it's amazing, precipitation falls from the sky and the area doesn't come screeching to a halt!) but the sun stays out. Our MD winters tend to be gray and wet... not my favorite!

Our weather preferences do present us quite a challenge for our future home though. We both much prefer cooler to warmer (yes, this means Texas is out!) but how much cooler is the question. I dream of the day that I can have a huge garden... but in really cold places, the growing season is super short. We'd probably need a greenhouse. And even then...

The safety of animals becomes a larger challenge too. I'm just starting most of my research, but I'd definitely need some structures to help any animals weathering the elements. And potentially bear-proof chicken coops? Or bear-proof anything... Is there even such a thing? And would I want to be someplace where bears attacking the animals was a possibility??

Still... might be worth it to be out in a beautiful snowy wonderland...