Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Clearing sage on the new land

Hard weekend.

We closed on our land last week and began to work as soon as we could get down there. The new home site is about twenty miles from where we are now. Work thus far involves clearing sage...lots and lots of sage. A few hours for two days and we managed to get a compost bin built (for cleared sage of course), the road to the compost bin cleared, H-braces up for the front gate, and 230  feet by 4 ft wide (920 sq feet of sage!) on the west boundary cleared for fence.

This is a ten acre parcel and we plan on putting a perimeter fence around it to keep kids and critters in. It's still a little too close to the Gorge for my comfort. I have horrible thoughts of running llamas and running children...with a 1000 foot drop in the middle of the sage. I need my fence. And there are still thousands of acres of unfenced sage land as far as the eye can see. I've been having an internal conflict/dialogue about fencing the natural land, but in the end, the security of a fence won. It only takes one mishap, and I won't take the chance. We try to talk to the kids about the importance of not going to the gorge without Mom or Dad, but with the autism thing going on, can my daughter really get it? And the llamas, well, they just look at me and lay their ears back, hawking up some nasty smelling loogies to launch. "Gorge...what gorge? Don't you be telling me about no stinkin' gorge!"

Yeah, I'm a big fan of  fence. I'll clear the sage by hand and do what it takes to keep the critters safe.
230 feet of cleared sage

compost bin o' sage
Still, even with the sunburns and sore muscles, it feels soooo good to be working on our own land. My  four year old son calls it "Our Place." Who knows, maybe it'll stick and a name change is in order for the farm.

Richard making an H-brace
And the views out there...can't be beat!

Even the dinosaurs are hard at work moving dirt for their house.
More good news...manifested a whole lot of bags for our first Earthbag project. And some pallets too. Wonder what we could do with a bunch of pallets? Thinking some kind of composting toilet inclosure/ shed.

We plan on heading out to our land every Sunday to work hard on getting fence up and sage cleared for our first building project. Right now, I think it's space to park some vehicles. I'm looking for a bus...yeah, an old retrofitted school bus we can use as a home base to get out of the sun, have a kitchen and maybe live in (when I talk Ricardo into it of course). If we didn't have to pay rent, think of the resources that could go into building!

Our first idea after the fence, or while fence project is ongoing, is to put up a shaded picnic area, which will sit next to a 20 x 40 ft building we can uses as a classroom for our sustainability school. This will involve a cistern to catch rainwater too, so our first class will be born soon. After we clear more sage!

Tired, but recovering. It is well worth it. Knowing it is ours (almost...still have that pesky owner carry loan to pay off on the land) and it is clean (no fracking anywhere nearby) and the air is pure...that is beyond priceless! It is a miraculous manifestation of positive intentions and heartfelt meditations.

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