Every Day This October
As of yesterday I finished stacking the first cord of word that was delivered to this farm. It's out of the weather and in the storage space beside the house and under the side "porch" near the hawk's mews. Besides the cord I purchases, my friend Trevor stopped by last week and while I was stacking armfuls of the maple and oak (cut to fit my smaller wood stove), he was chopping up some older rounds that had been sitting near the woodpile. A woodsman by trade, Trevor knew how to deal with the locust, which he said "Lasts two years longer than stone" with a smile. Locust is a real tough wood, all right. There are locusts posts still in the overgrown fields of this farm that have now turned to forests. Generations of deer have walked beside the ghosts of old fences, not knowing those petrified pieces of locust are standing where a calf and cow probably once stood half a century earlier. I love that this small space, just 6.5 acres, has so many stories.
So out of my goal of four cords I have one and face cord. Trevor turned that locust into a lot of seasoned firewood. And my friends Tyler and Tara have also offered to let me snag some seasoned firewood from their farm they have downed over the years and need to clear. Basically whatever I can load into my truck, split, and stack of a downed tree is mine. It could be as much as a cord! I am talking with them about getting ready to pick up the first load in my truck.
My truck is doing so well. It passes inspection, has new (used, but in good condition) winter tires, and despite a small oil leak and stone crack in the windshield that needs to be repaired, she is doing well and working like a sturdy draft horse. I am so grateful for her, and that I have a good 4WD vehicle going into winter.
Gibson and Friday are currently outside investigating the lambs. They are scheduled soon (4 of them) to be harvested in the coming week. The fleeces all sold and between them and some hopeful sales on the logo and illustration side - I'll be able to mail in a mortgage payment soon and get another cord of firewood delivered. People ask why I don't harvest all my own firewood from the farm? Because I don't own a chainsaw, am scared of chainsaws, and can't do it all. This fall I am putting up tomato sauce, canning, splitting and stacking wood, slaughtering lambs, collecting winter hay, running a blog, a small business, design clients, training a hawk and hopefully running until it snows. Buying a chainsaw, learning to use it, and harvesting my own firewood just hasn't been on the list due to my fear of swiftly rotating blades and my general clumsiness. I don't know why I am so defensive about buying firewood? I guess because if you live the life I chose, you are not only expected to do it all - but not admit why you wouldn't.
On that note, I am off to pick up hay in the previously mentioned pickup truck (which I now just call Taylor, since it's a 1989). Hopefully I'll beat the rain. I'm listening to the newest My Favorite Murder podcast with Gibson riding shotgun. I got coffee in my thermos, a job to do, a farm to secure in about 70 different ways, and friends coming over for a Game Night tonight.
October. Coffee. Friends. Farming. Board Games. Dogs. Hawks. Hope.
Not a bad start to the month.