I am obsessed with urban homesteading. I blame it on my personality combined with my glorious discovery of this book*, about which I've already waxed rhapsodic. I also have seemed to rubbed off on two of my best friends, lucky me! Leslie is now obsessed with wild yeast starter for bread as well as container gardening, and my friend Greg with both backyard fowl and sustainability in general (he and I have a lot of rad projects going on which I will try to be good about sharing as they come along).
I've now read the book enough that it is battered, oh glory be. I've only had it since July, a true testament. It seems to have uncorked a long stopped-up craving to 100% completely DO IT ALL! I, of course, think that everyone used to fantasize about living on a farm, waking up early to milk and feed the animals, making huge breakfasts, etc. I now know better (not everyone thinks that sounds like paradise) but surprisingly, there are plenty of us. And a lot of us also know we need different culture and activity than life on a farm can provide. Thank goodness clever folks have helped spearhead a way that we can HAVE IT ALL!
The downside of my fantasy is that I'm not much of a gardener. Not that I'm not interested, I'm just not experienced. But if there's one thing I've learned it's that practice does make - if not "perfect" than at least "better". So I've dived in. My square foot garden from last year has been reborn this year with 4 lovely and producing tomato plants, 2 scarlet runner beans (so pretty!), basil, oregano (from seed!), and yellow zucchini. My compost is working and we now have lemon, orange, and lime trees in the yard. Next plan is to design and begin to implement raised beds in the front yard, which gets more light than our back yard. And some lasagna mulching where the old pine tree used to be. So ... good!
Here are some pictures from the first day they arrived, when they were only one day old! (They turned one month old today).
Greg and I got 10 ducks and shared 4 of them with some other local duck enthusiasts (the more ducks that come at once the better). They ended up shipping us 11 instead of 10 (standard procedure is to ship an extra in case one dies! So sad!) so now we have an extra duck. Although I think we've since found a home for her, which is great. So we have 6 ducks and they live at Greg's house. [Rabbits are next and they will live with me. As will the upcoming chickens.]
We got all females and they'll all be layers. Anyone out there who loves ducks, tell me your stories! I'm also keen on finding recipes that use duck eggs.
Two Chocolate Runners: Tilly and Clementine "Clem"
A White Layer (Edie's duck): Buzz
Two Cayugas: Trevor and yet unnamed Cayuga
Golden 300 Hybrid: yet unnamed
Get ready for some cute pictures of the fowl adventures around these parts! As well as upcoming knitting (!) and spinning stories.
(I had a hard spring and summer, but I'm coming back. Thanks for the encouragement, those of you who've been my cheerleaders, btw. Means the world.)
*Mrs Urban Homestead is doing a book signing at Modern Times in San Francisco tonight, 10/15, at 7:30 if anyone is interested....