first frost & a clear day
first frost & a clear day
When I think about taking care of me and following my bliss, the best decision I’ve made this year has been moving to the farm. I absolutely love it here.
First off for the beauty. Every morning and every sunset I look out the window at the Olympic Mountains, and at Mt. Townsend (which I climbed!). I look out at the water of Port Orchard Bay, boats sailing by, float planes taking off. I drive to work on forested roads. When I’m out kayaking, baby sea lions follow me, inviting me for a game of hide and seek.
Second, for the opportunity. I have been hired as an office manager of an integrated healthcare clinic. With 6 practitioners, each with a different specialty, my days are interesting, engaging, and informative. I have landed in the midst of a fabulous resource for healthcare, with an opportunity to contribute what I know, learn new things, and gain information towards reaching my own goals. My work is very rewarding, at yet it’s only a fraction of the opportunity I have here.
Our home is surrounded by fruit trees. My garden is full of produce and flowers. The sheep in the field know me, recognize my face and my voice, and come asking for treats or sniffs when I come in. The dogs are loving, well-behaved, and playful. Chickens are coming in the near future. Moving to a mature farm is an amazing experience. The amount of effort required for a good harvest is relatively low. We got started in June, too late for many things, but the years of love put into this land are apparent in the ease and volume of the harvest.
Lately I’ve been inspired to pursue the fiber arts, so recently I acquired a spinning wheel, through work-trade. The generosity of everyone I’ve met in this niche is immense! I came out with how-to books, 2 kinds of wool to spin, bobbins, storage containers, niddy noddy for winding, and a lesson in the basics. She also recommended a fantastic spinning shop and gave me an introduction to the owner. Then there are the sheep, whose wool I can learn with, and make things from. My friend at work gave me tons of yarn to work in the meantime, offered to help me with my projects, and we’re taking a knitting class together. With what’s at my fingertips right now I can easily be learning for years to come!
Our latest purchase is a food dehydrator, to help us preserve the fall bounty we are overwhelmed with now. There will also be canning, my first attempt. Apples, plums, peaches, basil, tomatoes, zucchini, lettuce, kale, potatoes, pears, hazelnuts, sunflowers, figs, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries, chamomile, rosemary, sage, and lavender.
I am blessed to find myself in such a gorgeous home, with many opportunities to pursue my interests, and surrounded by people who offer their encouragement and support. And today I celebrate two years with the sweetest man I have known.
We flew into SeaTac, took advantage of their free wifi, and headed off to the nearby hotel-with-shuttle we found. Ugh, bad choice. If I can recommend one thing for your visit to the greater Seattle area, it is to NOT stay at the SeaTac Travelodge. However, we had a nice chat with the shuttle driver, and there was a reasonably good Thai restaurant next door. There was even a Redbox up the road. ;)
The following morning we checked out and headed for Bainbridge. The Link was a fun ride into downtown, followed by a short walk to the ferry. The trip over was grey so we stayed inside, and managed to check into a hotel on the island that I highly recommend, Island Country Inn. When we arrived they offered us fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies! And hands-down the best hotel of our travels.
We walked around town a bit, got a look at the library (outside only as it was closed), shared a meal, and then bussed to the north end of the island, where we met Jeff. He gave us a brief twilit intro to the farm, and then we had a lovely chat inside. Afterward he offered to drive us back to the hotel, which we accepted via a short tour of town and what to check out the next day. My first impression was that it reminds me a bit of Whistler, with the cute little shops, small town feel, but clean and upscale. Cute!
As recommended, we dropped in at a few local shops the next day, including the knitting shop, library, grocery, and a walk along the waterfront. I really fell for the yarn store, and the waterfront has some serious charm, especially the views of the Seattle skyline. Then we managed to find a rideshare, with pick-up at the ferry and drop-off in Eugene, and we finally headed home. :)