Going Off the Grid-Settling in ….

A bird and egg in the hand ....

I’ve been stopped just about everywhere in town asking why I haven’t been writing for the paper the past three weeks. Simple reasons really; I’ve been busy going on field trips with Riyan’s class, having fun with the girls, watering the garden, lifting weights with my brother Tanner, going on date nights with Phil, spending time with my sister Katie in the city, hanging out with Tony Todd AKA Candyman (no, seriously!) and watching Phil and Ed sweat over this ugly, behemoth of a water tank. The awful thing holds 1,100 gallons and with all the rain we’ve gotten, it’s now deep enough to swim in. Not that I am, but I could. All that stressing we’ve had over the well not producing enough is now vanishing. Every tank is full; 1,350 gallons of rain water saved!

 

The neatest things have been happening out here. I’m a regular old Snow White now. Except I have dreadlocks, tattoos, colorful language and let’s just be honest for a minute … I’m much cooler. Anyway, every day at least four times a day I rescue (paused for another rescue) swallows, hummingbirds and goldfinches. The swallows find themselves in the sunroom, hummingbirds in the girls’ room and the finch just hoping around the yard. I scooped her up because I didn’t want Jake to step on her and the weirdest thing happen. She laid an egg in the palm of my hand. I grab all these birds with my hands either out of the air or against the window. I’d be rescuing spiders but I hate them.

The garden is producing red and black currants and raspberries right now. But I see cherries, blueberries, figs, tomatoes, squash and a couple other things ripening. Our pumpkins are flowering. I’m not sure if that’s normal since normal people and places have pumpkins in the fall, but I’ll take it. I need to pick the salmonberries before it’s too late and get some jam made. I cannot wait for thimbleberries for thimbleberry jam (drooling).

I did get the chance to talk with a really nice Welsh man named Mark, who also just happens to be dating/madly in love with my best friend Alajiah, about how people live off the grid in Wales. I would try to explain this … but I don’t want to say it wrong. Actually, Phil and I have spoken to a number of people about it. We get stopped all the time, even in Port Angeles by people I don’t even know. My cousin, Tyson (who lives in Aberdeen) threw his children a birthday party and there we were talking about our composting toilet. I just have to say real quickly that yes, we have a septic system. We shower and do dishes out here. Our composting toilet has a very small drain that leads into the septic tank for urine if any should get in there. I mean, I can’t tell you how it really works because I just don’t know, but I do know there is one.

With the weather just phenomenal, I’ve been getting some legit reading done on my front porch before anyone wakes up. I wake up around 5:30 in the morning, grab my “crazy cat lady” robe and head out to the rocking chair. Talk about peaceful. The elk are normally out in the field or just coming out of the tree line. The only thing that would make it really great is if I could see the river and maybe Kahlua in my coffee. Then reality sets in and it’s time to get everyone up and ready! Speaking of mom duties, I better go check on everyone building the trampoline behind the house.