Friday, November 1, 2013

June in pictures

Our beginning garden spot. It will be expanded next year.

We have been spending the majority of our time outside. The Minions and I took a forty hour long lecture course on permaculture awhile back and we have been using it! The acreage we bought is over half wild and this pleases us to no end. What is developed we have been converting from mainly lawn to something more useful. Our goal for this year is to be about 50 % sustainable. This is a tall order with no tractor to break ground and pull out stumps etc. We could not find anyone to come and rototill a garden spot for us so we tackled it with shovels and turned it all by hand. Then the Universe provided us with a tiller lol It was hard going by hand and with the garden tractor, the guy really appreciated the fact that it was all broke up and turned already. He tilled it up really fine and we were all very excited to see how rich and healthy the soil is! He will be back in the fall to do our tilling for us and until we have a tractor of our own (it is on the wish board). Then we got to work picking out all of the grass and thistle roots. We planted about 75% of the garden that night. Putting in two types of peas, green beans, beets, spinach, swiss chard, carrots, lettuce and kale.
Zed planting Cherry trees
The next day we planted the rest of the garden and started our orchard. Mom brought up two Evans cherry trees from the place back home. We planted them on the south side of the garden were we have planned the orchard. In the rest of the garden we have zucchini, potatoes, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, dill, onion (three kinds), garlic, pole beans and ground cherries.
New flower bed and my faithful helpers Zoe and Zeddicus
We created some new flower beds around the house and ripped apart the disaster of a bed out the front and made it into a pretty new spiral bed!
The flower bed out the front BEFORE

The new Spiral bed out the front AFTER
The spiral bed is filled with Monkshood, Maltese cross and Toadflax perfect for the bees and I am going to add some Bees balm to this bed as soon as I can. Next year I will be expanding it again it will be my Witches herb bed with the additions of Datura and Nightshade.

The new flower bed by the front walk way
We planted Tiger lilies, marigolds, calendula, plantain, violets and clover in this bed.

One of the front beds
We have two flower beds that run almost the full length of the front of the house, one of them is three quarters shaded by a very large Spruce tree in it we have some Columbine, a climbing rose and Bees balm. The other gets full sun and is south facing in this we have Tomatoes, marigolds, oregano and rosemary and in front of Moms window a nice Autumn Sedum.
Hubby mows our many acres of lawn the eco friendly way :) He says it is very meditative and looks forward to it. My buddy says he looks like a ninja in this pic lol he just got off work and is still in his uniform.

Coconut water, young nettle, kale, hemp seed, coconut oil, ground flax and frozen mango. YUM! Morning smoothies are awesome and the Minions love them! We love our smoothies and the Minions have them almost every morning it is a great way to get greens and other healthy goodness into your kids.
Willowtree, Bug, Gramma and I went in and spent the day celebrating with the LGBT community for Edmonton Gay Pride 2013. We had a great time! Willowtree was in the parade and it in true Pride fashion was FABULOUS!! By the end of the parade we had so much Bling!! lol Then we walked down to the street party, there were so many people and vendors and entertainment!! We spend the afternoon enjoying the celebrations and the fountain :) that was Bugs favorite part.

Nature walks are a regular thing in our world. The Minions are learning to identify what is edible and what is not on our land. Bug spends most of the daylight hours outside exploring and being in nature, she is truly blessed. The sacred spring in June is a breathtaking sight. Marsh Marigold is the yellow flowering plant you see.
We have some enchanted places on our acreage this is the Fern gully, every time I am down here I have to resist he urge to curl up and have a nap amongst the ferns. The Fae magick is strong here :)
The boys built a bridge over the marshy area so it would be an easier walk it sure didn't take long for the Marsh marigold to claim it.
Stairs back up to the house.

Things are starting to grow. Weeding has begun and Thistle is our greatest foe!!
Remember my Moms huge cat Rambo :) and see the cage behind is protecting the growing catnip. The cats will not let it get big enough if we don't cage it they eat it right out of the ground lol silly kitties.
Zed, his friend and cousin Spencer putting together the chicken coop. We bought this chicken coop that said it was big enough for eight chickens...ya, i don't think so. We took in the Millet small animal fur and feather show and brought home some small animals to add to our homesteading life.
Meet Tank our new pure bred Flemish Giant rabbit. Many many years ago my Mom and Dad raised meat rabbits for the restaurant industry and my Mom always loved bunnies, she wanted to get some so we bought a breeding pair.
This is Ms. Chloe Valentine she is a New Zealand rabbit and Tanks girlfriend. Tank is super friendly and loves to be petted and held and does really well with the Minions but Chloe is the exact opposite.
We bought ten chickens. One rooster and seven laying hens and two baby chicks. The Minions named the rooster Ronald and the hens are Bonnie, Penny, Daisy, Henny, Rose, Chicky
Making rabbit cages

The baby chicks Eggbert and Gravy. These chicks will be raised by the girls then introduced to the flock in the late summer.
 King Connaher exploring sacred geometry. He is fascinated in the subject and has started learning everything he can about it.

We have had many campfire nights of roasting marshmallows, making bannock and sipping hot chocolate while stargazing.
We upcycled and old broken swing set to make more space for our chickens. The coop we bought will be attached and next year a new fancy chicken coop will be built.

Meadow letting Cheesecake have some outside time

Cheesecake loves the grass

Getting the baby chicks used to the outdoors.
 Planting a new Rhubarb. One of Moms friends from back home gave her a rhubarb so now we have two.
New Rhubarb

Litha altar

For Litha this year we decided to decorate the grove with seed and flower mandalas and designs.

Everyone loved this activity

We held our ritual at high noon and then retreated into the cool of the woods by the sacred spring to share a guided meditation.

Cousin Spencer invoking The God

getting ready for the guided meditation

The Spring at Litha

As always we pay homage to the Ancestors

 Later in the afternoon we gathered on the back deck and shared a meal as we watched the Holly King and Oak King battle it out for the supremacy of the next half of the year. Then we hit the hot tub and partied well into the night!! HAIL TO THE SUN!!
Chocolate fondue and Bread with dips

 The epic battle

The defeat

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