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Posts Tagged ‘family’

Sorry for missing last week’s update, cats and kittens. Sometimes there are just not enough hours in the week for me to get everything done! But to make it up to you, you get two super-double-plus-awesome posts today.

 

I sat down for a brainstorm with the housemates the other day (okay, it was like two weeks ago) about just what’s been going on at the Farmhouse. Here’s the latest from the team:

 

  • the potatoes are getting huge … they sprouted in the pantry over the winter
  • Ander and Sara built a new trellis with peas in the back
  • drying kale for seed
  • lots of sprouts in the greenhouse
  • there’s a new container garden on the patio (it’s so amazing, need pictures!)
  • planted corn, squash, and beets along the side fence
  • lots of cut flowers for the house
  • borage and touch-me-nots are sprouting everywhere there’s bare soil
  • seriously, if you want a borage plant, let us know
  • Sara developed a kickass recipe for hot sauce based on things in our garden (TOP SECRET)
  • parsnips are ready to be harvested
  • mint is recovering after being transplanted (I did that!)
  • there’s a new dish line on the counter made of two kinds of tape … if the dishes cross it, you wash the dishes … if it’s not kept to Max’s standards, then he’ll take away the nice pots; if we keep it up, Max will make tasty treats
  • lots of group eatings, including impromptu brunch one lovely Saturday and a house dinner yesterday
  • quinoa and lentils sprouting right now
  • discussed the correct pronounciation of quinoa (which, in the Farmhouse, is kee-NO-wah)
  • harvested the burdock root … it’s surprisingly tasty according to the roomies, “sort of artichoke-y”
  • scavenged some stuff from a house that was torn down on our block, including an old-school oven that Sara’s going to convert into an outdoor cooking surface
  • oh, and we GOT A NEW ROOMMATE WOOT WOOT!

 

Yeah, life at the Farmhouse is kicking ass and taking names.

 

This week in the links, MAIN STREET CAR FREE DAY! It’s one of several car-free events happening in Vancouver on June 20, but it’s the closest one to our house. They’ll be shutting down Main from 33rd to 16th from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. The organizers are still looking for volunteers so if you’ve nothing else to do on Father’s Day, consider helping out a good cause.

 

Great news out of California: the state assembly has voted to ban single-use plastic bags in retail stores! It’s not officially law yet until it’s passed by the state Senate, but it’s looking like a done deal. California currently uses 19 BILLION single-use plastic bags each year. San Francisco has been plastic-bag-free since 2007.

In light of the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster—now the worst in U.S. history (if not the world)—I’ll take any eco-friendly victory I can get.

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So this weekend’s work party was a resounding success! We had five or six people stop by over the course of the day and Ander did a fantastic job educating passerbys on our yarden. We had a bunch of people sign our petition to keep our yard exactly the way it is and we’re so much closer to getting a block party organized!

It was really nice to connect with the neighbours, actually. One told us tales of how people would come by our house with empty strollers and steal our pumpkins. One guy who works as a landscaper was fully in support of us and promised to bring us clean grass clippings, plants from other sites, tools he doesn’t need, and topsoil as well as offering to help fix the tools we have. So much love!

Kiko was a total jerk and did not help at all.

Fun story: The tenants previous to us used to use the front yard as some sort of trash can. I made the champion decision to tackle the one bed we’d never bothered to dig out previously because it’s full of trash. Ander pulled out two baby carriage frames from it weeks ago. I managed to dig out a garden hose, three bags of garbage, a fully-inflated basketball, a used diaper (ewwww), an army man, a plastic Viking figurine, and numerous pens and pencils. Seriously. Disgusting. Who buries trash in their yard when we have a weekly trash collection service?

Max was a champ and not only fixed up the greenhouse and finally (FINALLY!) got all the Christmas lights off the house but he tackled organizing our garage. We have cleaned that bastard out at least six times in the past two years, and yet it magically accumulates stuff. I think there’s some sort of vortex in there which allows for remote garbage dumping for aliens or perhaps time travellers. But it’s more organized now. Just need yet another dump run.

Sara was fantastic as well, hauling woodchips and tackling the out-of-control back beds. The whole yard is really starting to come together!

And … OH GOD we totally terraformed the boulevard. Now it has five nice neat ordered rows for planting. We’re going to put yarrow, flax, borage, and … I can’t remember what else in there. Should be neighbourhood friendly.

I definitely need to spend more time in the garden. I hauled dirt and dug weeds for almost eight hours on Saturday and my poor body is still aching today.

Special thanks to Razan and Erik for playing in the mud with us all day and to Tristan and Lina for bringing us much needed nourishment.

Photos to come whenever Ander gets them to me!

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Sometimes you're just a meat popsicle.

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So astute readers will notice there is now a tab at the top of this here blog linking to the Farmhouse Dictionary. This is by no means the full list of words, phrases, and names heard around the Farmhouse but it’s a start. I promise semi-regular updates!

Rin was in town last night so ten of us Farmhouse and honourary Farmhouse animals made the trek up to All-India Sweets for the $11 vegetarian buffet. Every time Rin’s in town these days, all she wants to do is consume massive amounts of curry … and who are we to refuse such an indulgence? Afterward, we trekked back to the house for imbibing and music making. Then we all went to bed by 11 p.m. We might be animals and hippies, but some of us have full-time jobs!

I must get batteries for the camera as I have many things to photograph, including the state of the garden in winter, Ander’s new Farmhouse tin can marquee project, the hilarious decorations in our bathrooms, and one very ugly paint scheme that’s going to be painted over.

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RIP The Goose

After digging into the bathroom garbage can, Goose finds herself in a bit of a predicament.

After digging into the bathroom garbage can, Goose finds herself in a bit of a predicament.

So, I haven’t written about this yet because, frankly, it makes me want to cry whenever I think about it, but I think it’s finally time.

The Goose, also known as Nico-dog, passed away in May 2009. She was 11? You might remember the tales of our baddington—how she liked to steal food and hide it places, or how she enjoyed nothing quite as much as going through the garbage, or how she destroyed three of my blankets in as many months.

But the Goose was a true friend, an awesome traveling companion, and all-around badass. You couldn’t have asked for a better, more hilarious dog with whom to live. I gotta admit, I hated dogs when I first moved into the Farmhouse (I’m definitely one of those crazy cat people) but the Goose won me over, slowly but surely. I’m pretty sure I was caught giving her pats on more than one occasion.

The Goose had lived a good, long life but she’d finally reached her end. Caterina called from Cali to let us know when it happened. I want to say that she got sick and Caterina had to put her down but I honestly can’t remember what actually happened. All I heard was Rin telling me “Goose” and “died”; everything else I blocked out.

Oh, little Goosington. We miss you!

thegoose_oldschool

In other news:

There is so much to tell you about the house; it’s been a pretty exciting summer, let me tell you. The garden is so full of abundance that I don’t know where to start. So I won’t. I’ll wait until I can get my act together and post proper pictures of our garden … and our two very special visitors!

Yeah, that’s kind of a tease. That’s just the kind of animal I am.

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So, I’m in the kitchen of the Farmhouse right now with a slowly growing group of cohorts for a night of dinner and music in celebration of the equinox and, you know, life in general. We just talked to our beloved former roomie Caterina, who’s chillin’ out in California right now. Rin’s going to visit her soon-ish and I’m extra jealous. She promised to give the Goose lots of pets for me!

All’s well in Farmhouse land. There are little plantings growing in the yard, despite the horribly unseasonable snow that seems to keep falling in our fair city. Rin planted some mushrooms today (a first for her) and a perfectly timed thunderstorm watered the patch after. I picked some chickweed and corn salad for dinner and it always amazes me that food grows out of the ground. I’m so accustom to foraging for food at the grocery store that when it comes from my own yard, I’m not quite sure what to make of it. Miracle in action, obviously.

Mmm, fennel is getting roasted and Margaret has affixed bells to her hat. I see Margaret scooping tahini and Rin is making something; she informs us that she’s just making it up as she goes along. I just show up and eat. I’m also a world-class stirrer.

Alright, it’s time that I stop being an antisocial crab and maybe play some bass? I’ve got a new (and unnamed) acoustic bass to play and many ridiculous songs to sing. Happy equinox!

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Pre-yard sale:

During yard sale (including some hot legs in hot shoes!):

Obligatory food pictures:

Some more candid shots:

All photos courtesy of Ander.

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