Sunday, October 30, 2011

The picture in my brain vs the reality :)

I've been packing. And packing..... and packing getting ready for the move. The last time we moved we had a moving company come in and do it. It was expensive and really decadent but when all was said and done well worth it (if you can afford it...this time we can't) The only thing that was broken was a light bulb! This time it's on me. I'm doing the packing... the husband is doing repairs and maintenance on things we need and making sure stuff is in working order. Packing for me can become mind-numbing at times so I day dream. Yesterday I was dreaming of sheep! Oddly the picture in my mind is always an english countryside with the type of sheep you would see in fairytale books..... white fluffy things and lambs with pink noses. Romneys!
They look so sweet!

 The reality of sheep for me probably won't happen till next spring. Another reality is that I live in the high desert of New Mexico so Romney's are not the best choice that I could make. The breed that (the reality half of me) is leaning toward is the Navajo Churro they're not particularly pretty fairytale looking but they really are the best choice for the area where I live.

You may be thinking that they look more calves than lambs! Navajo Churros are a very hardy breed prized for their wool with an interesting history. They are on the smaller side with a wide range of natural colors. 
I grew up in south-eastern Ohio where it was very green listening to English fairytales told to me by my Welsh grandparents so I have a preconceived idea of how things are supposed to look.
It has taken a bit of time for me to become accustomed to the landscape of New Mexico. It has been shocking at times how bare the land is and how the sky is so blue it can make your eyes water! You can have a clear sky and within 20 minutes there is a torrential downpour that is dried up within 15 min. It can be warm enough in the morning to garden in short sleeves then by late afternoon you could have 4" of snow. This is definitely a land of extremes! All in all I think the Navajo Churro lambs are pretty cute :)

Thursday, October 27, 2011

No More Light Pollution :)

Preserve the Dark Night Skies of New Mexico.. Hello Moon!
Skies dark enough to clearly see the stars are disappearing worldwide-more than half of the people alive on the planet today will never see the Milky Way. The culprits are pollution and the artificial lights of mankind.
Dark skies are especially important in Native American cultures. Many Indian traditions are based on stories involving the stars, which can only be effectively passed on to the next generation if the stars are visible in the sky.
Even for those of us who are not Native Americans, a bright night sky is a special thing. The look of wonder that fills the face of a child when she or he first clearly sees the stars, is a treasure worth preserving for future generations.
One New Mexico night sky is a great resource-the clear, unpolluted air and low population density means that across much of the State, the stars, moon, and planets fill the night with rare brilliance. In Ramah, our altitude of over 7,200 feet makes the show especially stunning.
It is a requirement of New Mexico law that our night skies be protected as much as possible from light pollution. The New Mexico Night Sky Protection Act regulates outdoor lighting fixtures to preserve and enhance the State's dark sky.
As more people move into Timberlake/Ramah and build homes, our brilliant night sky could be greatly dimmed by indiscriminate outdoor lighting. Please use outdoor lighting only where absolutely necessary, install properly shielded fixtures, and keep wattage as low as possible.
Help us preserve our night sky, so we can continue to look with awe into the vast brightness of stars above this unique and wonderful place.
Here is a Zuni story, based on the Milky Way:
The Stink Bug and The Milky Way
Have you noticed the big black beetles that trundle slowly from place to place in the summer? If you disturb them they put their heads down to the ground and their rumps up in the air, and if you get too close they will spray you with stink. Well, here's the reason they put their heads down like that.
Long ago, those beetles were given the job of putting the stars in the sky. Each was given a big bag filled with stars and up they went into the sky, where they spread out and began placing the stars here and there, as they were supposed to do.
One beetle, however, was very clumsy and tripped-and all his stars spilled in a long line across the sky, making what we call the Milky Way. Ever since then, whenever people get near, stink bugs put their heads down and hide their faces in shame.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


We have a signed purchase agreement....... Life is good! Now we are waiting for the Real Estate Lawyer to  write everything up with perfectly dotted i's and crossed t's :) (The Lawyer's name is "Sylvan" for some reason I like that!)

Monday, October 24, 2011

Millie Fleur d'uccle :)

As a part of our new kind of off the grid experience I will be expanding my flock of chickens. I currently have three Millie hens.....Poema, Piper and Pepper. Let me introduce you to my two boys Phineas and Padraic and hen #4 Paisley.

These are Millie Fleur d'uccle chickens that lay the most perfect off white eggs as well as being super friendly and beautiful. I want to participate in the local growers market in El Morro by selling off my excess eggs from the regular flock, bantam eggs and chicks plus honey. I also found out that I can offer my woven items as well. Jeepers! I thought I was busy enough already!!!!!

Here is a pic of the Queen ....Poema :)
She is quite regal.....

Sunday, October 23, 2011


We are in that weird exhilarating, nerve wracking, exciting part of house/property purchasing spot called escrow... It is a bit different than what we are accustomed to this time. For us it has always been a house with a mortgage loan and all of the hoops to jump thru required from all and sundry!  This time it's a box of  cash, a Real Estate Lawyer, a survey, and a chunk of land with a "free" 1979 mobile/modular  home. The inspections are up to us and basically it's an "as is" type of thing. Take it or leave it! So far so good though.  There isn't much to quibble over and once it is done it will be ours..... FREE AND CLEAR.... except for yearly taxes :p... it's always something. There is no water, no sewer or septic system, no gas, no phone line but there is a power line at the edge of the property. There will be electric... most of the time..... but it is minimal so refrigerator, freezer, computer and minimal lights. NO BATHROOM.. actually no toilet... so it will be an outhouse for us. That will cut down on guests! Although I know a few of my very favorite humans on the planet would brave it with out batting an eye :) No running water..... probably for a very long time. At this moment in history it is about 20k to sink a well. With the economy going the way it is in a few years you could probably trade food for drilling. I don't know too many people with 20k  just laying around. Those guys with the drilling rigs will get hungry eventually. Meanwhile the community well is 2 miles up the dirt road. We have been sorting out the logistics of hauling water. We have picked up the BPA free water totes for the potable water and go this week for the 275 gallon transport tank. For cooking we will use LP gas (propane) We picked up an old propane stove at a salvage yard and spent the day cleaning it up and figuring out the parts we need to replace. Most definitely the pressure regulator, lines and hoses. I don't want any nasty gas leaks. I am still working on the phone/internet question. There are about three options depending on what you want to pay and how reliable it will be. I gotta have something.... I can run my business with no power but if I want to sell anything internet is a must! Well back to packing and sorting..... more later.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The big move starts November 8th :)

I am enjoying the last days of running water and laundry facilities............. no more washing machine and dryer!!!

This cool clothes drying rack is from Homestead Drying Racks and will be quite handy come winter with all of the snow that comes with living at 7800 ft. Time to start gathering stuff for the marathon yard sale, craigslist, ebay sort out - sell off - pare down!!!!

Saturday, October 15, 2011