Tuesday, November 11, 2014

one year

We just passed our 1 year anniversary living on our off grid property. Where has the time gone? The Lord is constantly reminding me that my days have been numbered and that I should not allow the time to slip through my fingers.

The kids working on their 4-H Bucket Calf project

We dealt with water issues this summer. Both of our hand dug wells went dry at the end of June. But the Lord provided! Oh, how He provided! We have a creek on our property....way down at the bottom of it. Before we had moved I had watched the Wranglerstar video on ram pumps and had tucked that little bit of knowledge into the back of my mind. And in May, I showed the video to my husband, not fully knowing that we were going to actually need to use the information held in it.

Building our third ram pump. (They got smaller as the creek went down.)

I was out of town with the little ones visiting my grandparents when the wells went dry. My husband and our oldest son went to work on building our first ram pump. Not only did they build one, but they had it up and running, pumping water, before we even got home from the visit!

At this point, it's not as sustainable as we'd like. Because of the distance from the creek (and the elevation change) the ram pump is pumping into a holding tank about halfway between the creek and our home. A submersible pump is them pumping from that tank up to our holding tank above the house.

Knowing that the submersible pump is not going to work if we couldn't access fuel, we are hoping to resolve our water issues this winter with a sustainable alternative, or two.

Our water issues were temporarily solved but I was sure that the creek would dry up by late summer. Our rain/snow fall last winter surely couldn't be enough to keep that creek going. I prayed. We'd have to haul water up here if the creek dried up. But the Lord is good isn't He?? Even when things don't look good, He is good. And I am thankful for His faithfulness.

I'm eager to add more animals to this homestead but as my husband reminds me...if we barely have enough water for us, how are we to water more animals as well? And he is right. And so, I'm patient. I'm patiently waiting for the Lord to give us the direction that we need to take for a sustainable water supply. I know He will.

We were able to add one small animal to the homestead this summer though and that was Thomas. My daughter is in love. We all enjoy the kitten but he is especially HER baby. We have a horrible problem with mice and rats here and Thomas is still young but he's caught one small rat already (that I know of) and I am thankful for that!

Kitties sleep in the most interesting positions.

Our garden did amazing this year. Amazing! For what we had to start with I was sure that if a single green bean grew I would be thankful. I didn't hold out much hope. But again, I prayed. "Lord, this is your garden, not mine. You are the One that makes all things grow, I'm just a tender of it. If it be Your will, make this garden bountiful." And it was. Faithfulness. Again.

Mini watermelon
Garden 2014
Helping can green beans

Early on in moving here we realized that while we had a few neighbors that we liked there were no like minded families up on this mountain. I prayed that the Lord would bring up a family. There are quite a few pieces of property for sale up here. I can currently think of 3 or 4 just off the top of my head.  I wrote my prayers down in my journal, praying that it would come to pass. And it did. He brought up a Christian, homeschool family of 9 that bought the place for sale that borders ours! Of all the places up here they could have moved (and they really MOVED, from southern California to the mountains of northern California - from beeches to backwoods!) the Lord planted them right next door. I can walk to their house! Faithfulness. Again and again.

And so I'm encouraged to pray even more! Lord, one family a year, that's what we're going to ask for. One like minded family a year. And not only will He be hearing that prayer from us but also from our neighbors too! We're praying for a Christian agrarian revival on this mountain!
Wanna move? :)

Layton has proven himself quite the dedicated fisherman. While the rest of us are enjoying the river swimming in it or from it's banks, he is out in it, up a ways from us, waist deep, right by a riffle casting in his line. The entire time. Catching little ones and the occasional keeper like this one...

The big one!

He has the natural talent from his father. And if he keeps at it, which I'm sure he will, one of these days he'll be as good a fisherman as his daddy is too. In fishing am thankful for the lesson he receives from taking the time to do a job right, learning that the reward comes to those that are willing to stick it out and work hard. He is learning that success isn't always instant and that patience is a virtue.
Treadle sewing.

As for quilting (which is primarily what this blog was to be about, even though it's often not) I haven't had much time this summer to sew. As usual. I was able to finish up a few things this late spring and I'm already planning my quilts for this winter. This one, this one, and this one are on my list. I was happy about finishing up a civil war sampler (below) that my mother in law and I began over 5 years ago. How nice it was to get it quilted by Kathy and put the binding on it! It is serving as a second quilt on our bed already this fall season.

Butternut and Blue Quilt

I could go on and on it seems like but you've probably had enough as it is. Hopefully it won't be so long before I can post again. We'll see how it goes!

Until next time friends, blessings to you!
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