Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The redheaded boy, the family tartan and the backward sweater

We don't have a family tartan (that I know of). But of course if we did that'd have to be it. The girls have been doing a month-long research project on immigration and we are learning that we, as a Suite family, came over on the Mayflower and in a roundabout way from the halls of Napoleon and the pyramids of Aztec fame and other less-lofty but still fascinating paths to find ourselves on this little new farm in Western Oregon, where even the clouds are sunshine to my soul.

(Okay. That last bit was a bit misty but you get the idea.)

I am not yet wearing my cardigans backward and, shocker, that is not me in that photo.

But honestly I'm having a lot of fun here on Geranium Lane, where the internet doesn't reach us and the UPS man honks his horn outside the gate. All of our critters are now settling in to the century barn and the chicken chalet and the bunny hutch. I'm campaigning for a Jersey cow but so far Mr. Suite he is resistant.

I'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Stairway to ... construction

A little glimpse of the c-clamps that hold my life together these days.

Or that, at the very least, keep the babies off the staircase.

In house after house we renovated, remodeled and renewed and then we moved to the little church on a hill that was completely, beautifully redone and, if not exactly how I would have done it, it's important to note that it was not done by me. We moved in to finished floors and refinished wainscot and, you know, we just started living there. I didn't realize how beautiful that could be.

So here we are as in olden days, only a few children further along, renovating an old house and making it ours while living in it. Someone should make a reality television show out of the hilarity that is my day-to-day existence shuffling bins of school supplies and books with stacks of two-by-fours. Feeding animals and babies and wondering when the construction crew will show up.

Wait. I take that part back about reality tv. I just don't look that good in the morning.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Thankful and then some

My little boy is just. so. cute.

If he weren't mine I'd prolly snatch him.

This year has been an inside-out, backward kind of year for me. You know the day when you run all your errands and run into friends you haven't seen in forever and run out of toilet paper and run back into town, and frankly, you just run, and then after dinner your husband says, "Honey? Your sweater is inside out. And backward." You know that day? Yeah. That's been my year.


Sunday, November 13, 2011

More packing, more playing

I not only feel as though I owe you, dear friends and readers, an update or a dozen. I feel as though I owe it to myself to chronicle a fraction of the beautiful craziness that has been this move.

If you had told me six months ago that I'd be planning a new garden, tearing down nasty 1970s paneling, leaving my 1890s country-church-turned-farmhouse for a cottage of indeterminate history and a century barn that's better built than the house, well, this sentence clearly cannot support the number of clauses needed to describe my surprise and delight (and everysooften horror) and peace that has blessed us on this move to more acreage and more adventure and what we hope will prove to be an even simpler life than we found for five years in the tiny village we loved and left.

The all-new farmsuite is a mere 30 minutes from the former (still sweet but no longer the object of my hermitlike homemakery obsessions) farmsuite. The new place may be named Hoot Owl Hollow, if it's up to my children, and since (let's face it) I like to choose my battles, HOH it is for now. The circular drive that sweeps past my new little farmhouse and curves before my big antique barn I've tentatively named, optimistically, Geranium Lane.

While there are many charming plantings and outbuildings here, there are even more projects and situations the optimist in me calls "possibilities."

In fact this blog may go the way of a remodelaholic in place of its overly introspective writing ramblings, mommy musings and the like.

My husband, the dear engineer, has his work cut out for him at work and at home.

But, you know, as long as I have my barn.

Just short of a month into the move we still don't have phone or internet at home. But thank goodness for chocolate. (That and the red hair makes me know Salvador was surely not switched at birth.)
And the new house has nearly as many big leaf maples as the old house.

Just as many dogs and babies.

You know you're still reading the same blog because the pictures are ever so random. That's Josiah, one of my very favorite people. Too bad his family loves him because I just want to snatch him. Seriously.

And speaking of children I love... Sarah had an incredibly moving flute recital three days after we, a-hem, moved. Way to practice, honey. And to not lose your music in the packing boxes.

AND, since we're on the subject of performances, all three big girls are dancing in the Nutcracker this season. Because we have nothing else going on, that's why. So four rehearsals a week? No sweat.

Whenever I'm not wandering the propery, picking up heart-shaped rocks in the creek or tracing the square-headed nails in my barn walls, I'm stitching day-of-the-week towels. You know, when I should be unpacking. Or teaching geometry. Or taping drywall. Or driving in to cell range to make a phone call.

I miss you all! Please keep checking back... farmsuite is still here... just not as frequently.