07 January 2019

A year gone by

I know so much happened in 2018 before May 4th, but that was, by far, the sweetest day of our year.  It's when our baby girl joined our family!  We certainly have savored every minute of this past year with her.  She is our little spring flower, that has brought so much joy to us all.  Every one of the kids still eagerly greets her each morning (and often fight over who gets to hold her first).

Not long after her birth, I flew to Michigan with her and F to attend my Grampy's funeral.  He was the last of my grandparents to pass away (all within the past couple of years).  The boys were already in Michigan with my parents for a special trip around the state, so instead of an extended trip to visit family, the girls and I just had a brief visit to Michigan and then a couple days in Chicago with my sister.

We had vowed to slow down and enjoy our new baby this summer, but the gardens don't let you do that no matter how hard you try.  Our days were filled with weeding, planting and harvesting.  We enjoyed all of the harvests (including a couple weeks of strawberry shortcake for dinner).  

Despite the dry start to summer and wet end, most of our crops did well.  We managed to put up a freezer full of fruits and vegetables, and can most of the jams, salsas and sauces that we need for the year.  

Family came to visit and rented a cottage on a nearby lake, and the kids spent days playing and exploring and evenings fishing on the dock.

Three major injuries happened within one month.  The first (and second) fractures in our family within three days of each other.  Little F had a nasty fall from play structure just days after her brother had a knee to his cheek in a soccer game, both resulting in two fractures each.  Stressful, long nights in the ER during our busiest weeks of the year.  A month later, K had a nasty injury on his leg that kept him out of the first several weeks of his soccer season.  
Thankfully, they are healed up now.


There was lots of making this year 
(harvested herbs for the pantry and for salve making)
(one of the many items off of my needles this year--the rainbow sweater)

We celebrated our 15th anniversary in the fall.

And took a family trip to Maine (it had been 10 years since our last one!) 

Besides soccer (x3), the fall included family visiting, a trip to Shelburne Museum, and a lot more harvesting!

2018 ended with logging and piling up wood for next winter's heat, family walks on our neighbors' land, holiday meals, and cosy nights by the woodstove.  

My computer has been slowing down and uploading pictures has become such a long process that it kept me from updating the blog.   But I miss having this as a journal of sorts (since I am horrible with keeping up with my pen and paper journaling), so I am going to aim for visiting this space at least once a week.

Happy New Year!

18 January 2018


We had lovely holidays, both Thanksgiving (where we walked to our neighbors house, rather than travel to another state for the day), and Christmas, cozy and warm at home.  After Thanksgiving, it was our annual two-day holiday craft market that I do with friends...always fun and always busy.

The kids have been enjoying the snow.  Little F has quite the tolerance for cold (and it has been COLD!) and will play for so long out in the snow.  

Adam has been working on logging and getting the wood cut for next winter.  I've been staying busy with homeschooling, cooking, baking (my first attempt at a cinnamon star, and Adam's Grandma's pierogis made when his brother's family came for a visit)  and crafting (Oliver and S "Garden Party dress" and this scarf (along with daily chores, of course).

AND, the most exciting news of 2018, we are expecting baby 5 in May! 

30 October 2017


It's been a busy and full fall here on the farm.
Our markets finished in early October, and we've been working on projects both inside and outside since.  We are still busy preserving food, putting up many (many!) raspberries before our killing frost in mid October, and freezing many bags of kale, spinach, cauliflower and green beans since.  
I've worked on some bigger projects this fall, like my Welcome Blanket.  And some bags, a cowl, a dress and skirt.  Now I'm trying to finish up some smaller projects for the two day market we do after Thanksgiving.

Our squash harvest was disappointing.  Damage from the wet weather earlier in the fall and the millions(!) of squash bugs meant that more than half of our pumpkins and butternuts went to the pigs.  

We are waiting for our milk cow, Jemima, to give birth, we are cleaning up from a massive wind storm we had last night, we are trying to find balance with homeschooling and farmlife demands, and we are looking forward to our slower months ahead.

(I'm horrible at keeping up here, but do post snippets of farm life on our instagram account at oldgatesfarm)