Sunday, April 29, 2012

Our Life in Pictures - The Business of Life

I'm so very sorry for the silence as of late - I have been extraordinarily busy with Naturally Cozy, homeschooling and spring cleaning.  It seems that I barely have time to breath!

Although the blog has been silent, we have been on the go.  Maid Elizabeth and I (along with Sir Knight and the older children on the weekends) have been hiking 3 miles every day. We have gotten faster and faster and plan to add some mileage as our stamina increases. Master Hand Grenade has been keeping the lawn (I use the term "lawn" very loosely) mowed and has been "spring cleaning" outside.  We planted two raised garden beds with raspberries and one with various herbs.  We are hoping to build a few more beds before it is time to plant, but we will have to see if that comes about.

Master Hand Grenade has been expanding his knowledge base as a Man-in-Training.  He and his grandfather built a Z-bar door for our chicken coop and have plans to build a similar door for the children's play house.  He also worked on a neighbors lawn mower and, with the help of his dad, got it running and serviced.  A project in his very near future is an out-house (complete with urinal!) for our back yard.

Anyway, I'm sorry to have been so lax on posts - please forgive me.  I will endeavor to persevere!

Sir Knight instructing Master Hand Grenade
Taking the lawn mower apart
Removing the air filter
Taking the top off the carburetor
Testing the newly repaired mower
Master Calvin helping with wood
New chicken coop door - hand built by Master
Hand Grenade and Grandfather
Newly planted raspberries
and herbs


  1. Enola Gay,

    Life keeps us busy. We understand that when you have a moment to type, you'll be back. I love the pictures of the family working on the property and with the lawnmower. Be careful with your herbs, the birds may eat them up. They targeted mine and I don't have much left.

    1. curious why you put raspberries in raised bed and close together:? advantage?
      i enjoy your blog too. thanks

  2. Is that the type of mower where the bottom half of the carburetor is the upper half of the gas tank? Secret repair tip-a very thin gasket/diaphragm in this carburetor tends to have a short life when used with gas that has alcohol in it. The gasket is cheap and easy to repair, but why do it if you don't have to? It will usually fail(as do many things)at a very inconvenient time.Try to use gas with as little alcohol in it as possible(or none)..and keep a spare diaphragm around.

  3. If the herbs are perennials, it might be wise to plant them a bit further apart. Oregano, mint, parsley, sage, and thyme do love to spread. Our Oregano has spread about three feet in diameter since it was planted two years ago.

    Comfrey spreads everywhere, but is beautiful and a tremendous boost for an herb garden, since it is loaded with nutrients, plus lots of Calcium, and makes a great mulch for other plants.

    I have never planted Raspberry bushes, but can give you some advice from our experience with Cherry bushes. They look like small sticks when first planted, but after a few years they grow into very large bushes. They are difficult to transplant, once established, as the roots grow deep and spread. Our cherry bushes produce okay, but would have done better if they would have originally been planted 4-5 feet apart. We planted six new cherry bushes this year and put them 4 ft apart as suggested. They look scrawny now and like sticks but they will fill out, grow much more quickly, and do much better this way.

  4. Enola,

    I check your blog almost everyday and you have one of the best blogs on the internet for living off the grid. I believe that family comes first so if you fall behind on your postings, thats okay. I will be patient.

    its good that your family is getting into good physical shape by hiking. Due to an injury in the military, I cannot hike. I do however spend lots of time on an exercise bike that has a generator attached for resistance and I can slowly charge a 12 volt car battery with it.

  5. i have the same concern with your raspberry bushes...they are too close together and you will have troubles when wanting to split and transplant to expand...raspberries can do that pretty much on their own and can be difficult to control...they send out runners and those runners will root and travel all over the place...they will also need some sort of trellis, pole or other support as well.. in the fall when they look like they are finished producing and dead..they are'nt...the following spring they will be sprouting all over the place and you will have lots of berries-but you will want them growing so that you dont have to reach into the middle of thorny bushes to pick.

  6. Oh we love raspberries!! A dear prepping friend gave me some raspberry plants that I have yet to get into the ground. I do have "the" perfect spot and will eventually be a hedge of sorts! I wish I could remember the variety she gave me. These don't have tons of runners, produce big berries with (what she and others have said) outstanding flavor! They must be hearty plants as my 'plants in a bag' are getting flowers! I suppose that will be our gardening project for tomorrow.

    Yesterday we planted my rose bushes, transplanted the hydrangea (that tripped me and made me break my arm in 7/2010), the holly (tiny now but part of the perimeter safety edging) and weeded the small bed in front of the house. I plan to use areas of this for "hidden" lettuce and other edibles in disguise!