Sunset

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Beautiful picture to the end of a perfect day.

This was taken at the end of our street at the Niagara River and Canada across it.  Photo credit to my niece, Britt for taking the picture while Chase held up the sun!

Such a peaceful place to watch a sunset

 

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Happy New Year

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I’d like to wish you all a very Happy New Year filled with contentment,  happiness, health and love!!

Looking forward to 2016 and sharing more of the many new adventures we have planned for our little homestead!!  Tina

Little Cabin in the woods

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Our new cabin in our woods

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I have always wanted a cabin in the woods since I was a little girl.

My uncle and his wife had a small cabin that we would visit with our family a few times a year.  It was nestled way up on a hill and in the winter we would spend the day there with our entire extended family and sled down the hill, drink hot cocoa and have chili or soup for dinner.  In the summer we would play in the open fields and fish for catfish in their small stocked pond.  It was always such a cozy place to visit with the woodstove heating the house surrounded by family and full of fun!

We built a camping area behind our horse pastures a few years ago.  You can see how we enjoyed it in my past posts here:  Camp out visitors  and Staycation Vacation

This year the man decided it was time to make a more permanent addition to the camping area so we can literally stay back there all summer, fall and even winter with the addition of propane heat!  At our local county fair we designed a small “shell” of the cabin we dreamed of and had the Amish build and deliver it.

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Slowly we are finishing the inside to our vision. We started by building and painting a ladder for the kids to use to get into the loft which will be their sleeping area with feather beds to lay on and nice warm down comforters to snuggle in.  We designed it so it is large enough to fit 4 adults so they can have friends sleep over comfortably.  I found foam pad pieces in a hardwood design and we lined the floor of the loft with it.  There is also a full size window so they can see the horses and enjoy a summer breeze.  The railing comes from a garbage pick I found and we sanded and rounded it and cut it to size.  It’s perfect!

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Next came insulation inside and a rustic wonderful ceiling to keep it warm and cozy in the winter and cool in the summer.  I was thankful for the man’s brother coming to finish it off as it was hard work and I was tired of holding boards up with my hand and head while the man nailed them in! Thanks Uncle Tom!!!!

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Outside a new fire pit has been constructed so we can cook our meals and enjoy family and friend time around a bonfire.  The horses love being close by.  The man and teen planted a few beautiful pine trees we can watch grow over the years.  Wrinkles is already enjoying her new spot on the porch to relax while we work.

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The views of the ice pond, warming shanty, woods and sunsets are stunning from the porch!  Even though we are cleaning up and burning the leaves, the weather is so mild I am not sure when we will be able to ice skate on the pond.

Next up we will be building a small kitchen area and purchasing some multi-functional furniture for sitting and sleeping.

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This is our new little piece of Heaven right here on Earth 🙂

 

 

Mother Earth-Fall in Buffalo, NY

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The view of our ice pond

New York in the fall should be considered one of the “wonders of the world”.  It is spectacular.  The air is crisp and smells of leaves and frosty air, the streams, rivers and lakes are filling up offering clear and cold water, the wildlife is roaming around more freely in search of tasty treats under the fallen leaves, and the skies overhead are more blue and full of white puffy clouds than ever.

We enjoy this time of year for trail riding, hiking, 4 wheeling, and relaxing.  Here are some wonderful pictures from just one weekend on our property.  I hope you enjoy the pictures as much as I did living them!

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Our ice pond is stunning.  It’s called the “ice pond” as it is a pond we built shallow enough so it will freeze quickly and be used for ice skating all winter long.

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The leaves are such a beautiful backdrop.  I can’t get enough of their colors!

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Riding the horses with the sounds of the leaves under their feet and a happy dog chasing blowing leaves.

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Pumpkin sales, carving and trick or treating (Bruizer and Two Bit of the book the Outsiders) end one of the most beautiful months.

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And a sneak peek at the beautiful cabin we finally have for our campground by the ice pond.  More on that in my next post……..

Long Beach

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We spent this past week at Long Beach in Canada.  You can see by this picture taken our first early evening there EXACTLY why we love this place.

I am playing catch up but will post more about our stay with fun pictures, the wonderful book I finished reading (which could not have been more appropriate for this vacation) and the historical house that captivates me!

Harvesting

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Fresh lettuce daily

It’s a special time of year when you are finally “eating” what you’ve sown.  A few of our garden items have been producing very well in this wet summer we are having.  Here is a peek into some of our harvested meals.

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We are growing head lettuce, romaine lettuce, and purple leaf lettuce.  Every day it’s great to have a choice of which fresh lettuce you are going to eat.  We grow most of this to feed the rabbits, goats and chickens as well as ourselves.

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Kale chips

With our lettuce we have our kale planted.  We have 5 huge plants full of thick heavy leaves perfect for kale chips, soups, and kale salads (the teen’s favorite).  She uses just the kale with apple cider vinegar and some taco shredded cheese.

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The pea plants are producing in one spot only.  Some of them have become molded from the rain.  We have a second planting of 18 plants almost ready to go into the ground.  We are still getting about 7 pea pods from each plant but we need WAY more for my kids!

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These were the only strawberries we collected this year from our plants. We lost quite a few plants to rabbits/voles this spring.  They have been replaced but won’t produce until next year.

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Beans and basil are doing well.  This is a store bought tomato as ours are not ready yet but with fresh basil, this caprese salad was awesome!  The beans did not make it past washing them.  The kids ate them immediately.  Luckily I have a previous harvest already blanched and frozen!

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One of the last 3 jars of peaches left from last summers canning.  Still a sweet treat.

Looking forward to the many more items to come!

In the moment

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Sometimes all you need is a bit of sunshine, warm ground, and a great place to rest your mind and body.

Coming back from a walk in our woods today the horses were enjoying the warm earth for the first time this season.  I envied them being able to lay there in utter peace, no worries, no responsibilities, just  to be.

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Interestingly enough the two relaxing are my geldings (male horses).  They are both so different in personality.  My oldest one turned 25 last week.  This is a “senior” horse now.  He’s always been a loving animal, so full of pride and so gentle.  He has a very hard time trusting people and things and after 14 years, it still warms my heart to see him be able to relax like this.  The other one is a 16 year old who has the personality of an eight year old boy.  Full of mischief, inquisitive, loving and carefree.  He trusts his older brother with his life. He does not like to be far from him and knows he can lay next to his brother and not have a care in  the world.

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And yet while these two are having their moment of inner peace, there is my mare (female) horse standing to the side.  She is an 18 year old gentle soul.  She is brave and trusting and skimpy with showing her love for you.  But it’s there and you can feel it even when she doesn’t show it.

Stopping and looking at them after my relaxing walk, it came to my mind that she is like me.  I want to relax, I want to lay on the warm ground and not have a care in the world.  I envy people who are able to do that.  Shut off the world and just be.  But that is not in my makeup.

And so like my mare, I will be content with where I’m at and accept who I am knowing I may never be able to “just be” and that’s ok.