February was one of the wettest months in the past decade of California. People here had been praying for rain after so many years of drought and the rain came. Right when we did. It was a lot of rain. But warm (to us) and green and luscious and I enjoyed (almost) every drop of it. All that green does good things for the soul. It made it a little hard to jump into some of the farming projects that we’ve been eager to start, but it certainly felt like and adventure. There were a few days when the rain was so hard we either had to drive over a river to get away, or stay at home. We chose to stay at home a lot, to sew and cook and set up house. And read. Lots of time to read here.
I love the combo of the Spanish moss and the plum blossoms. I am blown away by the beauty of this place. As soon as the weather forecast showed some sunshine my parents booked a trip to see our new life. It was so fun to see this experience through their eyes and share it with them. We walked all over the ranch together, finding new places. We drove up and down highway one and ate lots of good food. They took over a few of the homeschool morning meetings and taught my kids about art and poetry. It felt pretty good to get some reinforcements in here since Jeff was traveling for work for a lot of the month. They also helped us to plant some of the 50 trees we had shipped to us.
It was sad to see them go, but thankfully we have family nearby now! We’ve never lived close to family in our married life, and it’s so great to have Jeff’s parents just a short (long with traffic sometimes) drive away. They have been to the farm quite a few times to help us with projects and celebrate birthdays. And we’ve been up to their place to escape a few times, get away from rain and having to build fires and be dirty. I feel like this is how life with kids is meant to be lived. It’s so great to see these grandparent/child relationships grow deep roots and to have more adults helping to guide and love my children.
Ron comes and tinkers in our barn and fixes things and helps get big machines running and takes his afternoon nap. Nedra comes and helps me cook and teaches the kids to sew and practices with Peter. She and Emmeline made these curtains to spruce up Emmeline’s room a bit. I can’t believe I’ve been missing out on this all these years. Saren and her three youngest also came to visit. They didn’t get quite so lucky with weather. But we didn’t let the rain stop us. We are waterproof, we can handle it. It was awesome to share all this beauty with a sister-friend. It’s nice to be with someone who feels things in the same places that you do. We loved soul searching together while these kids had the time of their lives exploring and feeling alive. Most of the photos we took were from our little excursions to the coast, but we spent most of our time at the farm, kids exploring, me and saren walking and cooking and digesting this life of mine together. Always lammy. I love the rain. All that it brings with it. Everything seems more vibrant with grey skies. Rain sort of fits with my theme of the whole glistening. A bright sunny day has it’s own glory, but the sun washes out a lot of the brilliance that a rainy day soaks into the world. Em and Peter and I spent a lot of time up in the greenhouse. Planting seeds and then, after tucking them into their soil, singing to them to help them grow. Peter got the idea from Frog and Toad and it seems to be working. Things are really starting to grow in there. I love having a little greenhouse.
Some friends of the owners of the ranch came to staying the guest house for a few days. It was so great meeting them. In fact, one of the things I love about this life is how many cool and interesting people we are meeting. You stop to talk to anyone you see around here because there just aren’t too many people! This couple came over one day for our morning meeting to teach the kids physics and robot engineering. The kids were in heaven, learning from someone besides me and mother nature. We’ve decided that we’re putting all visitors to work. Either with a shovel or with a white board. Once the rain ended we were able to get out to explore a bit, all that the rain left behind. Check out this mudslide up close. Mother nature is powerful. Kids are finally getting used to little Mochi (growing up, but still just a 5 month old pup!)
There’s more, but it’s late, so we’ll leave it at that. Life is good here. Lots of work, the most exhausting of which is getting the kids to work! But lots of life and beauty and green. We feel alive.