Fria, Lena's 24-year-old Arabian mare loves her new paddock and all the greenery here in Arkansas.
Well, we are all here, people and animals at least - there is still some stuff to move. And, I started to say back to Normal - but in our lives that's a little town outside of Huntsville, Alabama and about 900 miles from here. I hope to get back there to visit some day. I also want to go to Options, Louisiana and probably will this fall. I'm looking forward to exploring Options.
We spent last weekend winding our way through delightful little towns such as PeeDee, Bee Branch, Flippin and many others on our way to and from the Baker Creek Heritage Days Festival. I found myself wondering how many people pick the town they live in by the name? Do people decide to live in Three Brothers just because the name pleases them? How do people decide where they live? Do they?
I know I love the name of our new town - Fox, in part because it is short, easy to write and everyone can pronounce it. It is also unusual, though probably Carr, Colorado trumps Fox on the strange-name-meter of places I've lived. This picture is of Shawn walking back to our store from the Post Office in Fox. It is now really easy to get orders shipped - the Post office is next door!
I've been away from my blog for a while for several reasons. I was without internet for two weeks while I was in Colorado getting the farm ready for the auction. The auction was brutal. That is the only word that really covers it. It is a quick, efficient way to wipe out much of your past and the baggage associated with it. Of course, so is a house fire, but people don't die in auctions... just dreams.
I had the help and support of so many friends and family in getting things sorted, pulled out of corners, cleaned, organized and packed. My mom worked with me most of the two weeks and my dad spent several days on the farm doing hard, manual labor. Wonderful friends came down from Denver and cleaned my house while I was off teaching a weaving class. Many other friends showed up the day before and during the auction and others friends came to haul things away afterward. I couldn't have done it without you all - and I mean that, no matter how cliche'd it sounds. I can't tell you all how much I needed you and how much I appreciate your help.
That is part of why I've been away from writing here, too. This move, while planned, blessed, guided, gifted and wonderful in so many ways, is also a ripping change. Generally, I write from the heart. Lately, that has been a little too raw to splash on the internet.
But we are getting back on to familiar ground with a routine developing, the animals adapting and the store... well, it sure needs a boost right now, but now that I am not driving back and forth across the country, I have the time to devote to it. To this end, we are offering free shipping on store purchases through the month of April to anyone who reads this post and sends me an ebay message requesting it.
There is a comfort in routine. Farm chores are getting easier as we get more fencing built and paths cleared. Lena has single-handedly cleared most of the catbriar off the barn meadow.
I try to do chores in the morning and then get to the store by 8:00. Shawn and I work there until somewhere between 2 and 4, take a break for lunch and then go work on the farm, fencing, shearing, hoof trimming, brush clearing, post hole digging... and on.
Lena works on the farm all day and usually has a pile of stuff ready that she needs an extra hand with. We have all been working together on the farm until dark, coming back to the store for a quick dinner and to finish up making stock or answering queries and then off to bed by 11:00 or so.
We are currently fencing the power-line road to make a pasture for the horses. Then the sheep will have the horses' current paddock. Homer (yes, he's doing great and really appreciates his hair cut - thanks Mom and Julia!) (He's the black sheep in the middle, for those of you who don't know and love Homer - and if you know him, you love him!), the llamas and the whole goat herd were helping us clear brush and string fence yesterday.
I'll try to keep everybody more up-to-date now - but it's Saturday and there is fence to string...