Talk about a busy weekend! It’s times like these that I’m grateful my parents are so close to us to help out with Luke and young enough to keep up with him because he is ALWAYS on the go!
After living in downtown London for nearly 10 years (Julian born and raised nearby in Surrey), we lived on top of our neighbors – literally. We were married in Washington DC, Julian’s job transferred us there from London and we always knew we wanted to get back to the Good Ole’ USA so it was going in the right direction! We loved DC – it is such a great city but after 18 months we decided it was still TOO much city and we needed something with a slower pace before we started a family. We have traveled so much we really felt it was time to slow things down so we started looking for “land” to build our dreams on and after 16 months of searching we found a perfect 10 acres to put some roots down.
Yes, it’s about 15 minutes to the nearest grocery store, yes it takes about 20 minutes to get to our nearest “shopping plaza”, yes it takes Julian about 7 hours to “mow the lawn” and yes it takes most people we know about 45 minutes to get to our house (SORRY! I realize it is our dream to live here and you are all such great friends for enduring a “drive in the country” just to have dinner with us!). BUT when you’ve traveled and moved as much as we have, we’re crazy enough to think all of the above sounds like our perfect dream! Just ask Julian about being in Thailand during the Tsunami in 2006 – trust me, we live for simple!
We loved every minute of building our house – we had fun with the details and changing it up to fit our taste. BUT one of the hardest things for me has been the outside of the house. We did not pay a landscaper because we still had to pay for horse fencing, stables, etc. so we’ve been trying to get ideas and piece it together since we moved in over two years ago.
Everything costs SO much money that it’s almost impossible to get the satisfaction you want when you do it in small stages. My mother’s day gift was over $100 in plants and I feel like it doesn’t even make a dent! Then someone told me about FreeCycle and how one person’s rubbish is another’s treasures. It got me thinking that there’s got to be people out there wanting to recycle parts of their garden. I ended up going onto Craigslist and found so many people wanting to get rid of bushes, trees, roses, hedges, etc. It was an awesome place to start and I found 4 great boxwood bushes for $50! It was perfect to add some structure to our front garden beds that desperately needed some landscaping. So Julian and I spent most of our Sunday digging up bushes, digging more holes and transplanting 4 bushes. We even managed to get an apple (red delicious) tree! I’m now on the hunt for a Japanese Maple Tree!
I’m so excited to see the outside of our home finally take shape! My next project is to read the book Lindsay recommended over at Crunchy Savings, “Turning My Backyard into a Homestead”. This is the second year having a veggie garden and I have a ton of strawberries and raspberries already growing like crazy this year! I’m thrilled with how much I’m able to get from my garden! (For more pictures of our farmstead – check out us out at Highwalker Ranch!)
If you are in need of something for your garden or perhaps you are one of those people who want to “recycle” some of your garden that is over growing or in need of a change I would suggest posting on FreeCycle and/or Craigslist!
Also – be sure to check out Lindsay’s post today which talks about how to make your own rain barrel watering system! We can’t wait to do this for our garden – what a great way to recycle the water!