Greetings from Virginia

Things are changing. I’m sure that comes as no surprise. I just wanted to take some time to say, “Hello. Let’s catch up and chat a while.”

I’m not really sure where to begin. I have so much writing to catch up on, scribble scrabble from my journal, and words to finally put down in print, so I guess I’ll just start telling you about where we are. Life in the now. Greetings from The Sharestead in southwest Virginia.

We came back to Virginia out of love. (Virginia is for lovers, after all.) We traveled in a circle and moved back to the same place that was the beginning of the idea. (The idea for The Trip. The one postponed by Baby Taylor.) The Big Trip, we’ll call it, is on the horizon in a few months. Our time here in Virginia is just a stop on the road. The place we felt best to stage and prepare, to get all of our ducks in a row. But back to why we chose to come back here. The Sharestead owners had to be away to care for family, so we jumped at the chance to keep an eye on the place.

Now that our time here is winding down, it’s hard to not have the “one foot out the door” mentality. So I’ll write, for you, for myself to reflect on each dayΒ and keep me grounded in the fact that now is now. Now is not tomorrow. And we still have beautiful, fun, and even ordinary days ahead, even though we are not officially on the road just yet.

Today I’ll tell you about my gardens. I have never really gardened before. I tried to grow wildflowers at a place we lived in Wilmington, and that was a total fail. I mean, who can’t grow wildflowers?Β With that being the extent of my gardening experience, I’m certainly not gardener material. I decided I really wanted to do this, really learn about gardening. Just the thought ofΒ growing my own organic food was empowering. I read A LOT. I looked up moon cycles and planting with the moon. I studied compost and good and bad bugs. I even took the time to learn the different wild edibles and a little about foraging. Which we will continue to study on the road. We spent countless hours weeding and planting. Our first seedlings finally started to grow, we were happy about our success, the plants started to get bigger . . . . . and our beds were covered in invasive “weeds,” (I say “weeds” because these edibles are weeds to the common homeowner), that had seeded in the compost. Talk about wanting to throw up. After a few days of sorting thorough what might be a crop and might be a weed, and pulling out the later, we replanted, spread our love, and hoped for the best. So far we have yielded tons of lettuce, onions, kale, radishes, turnips, beets, and have squash, collards, Jerusalem artichokes, beans, carrots, tomatoes, and tons of fresh herbs on the way.

I’ll miss having my own garden when we leave here. I have never been one to be good with my hands, but only because I had not introduced them to gardening yet. It has been a place of happiness for our family. We can spend hours with our hands in the dirt, and Opal right along side of us. She has learned the routine of gardening; morning weeding, evening harvesting, then watering, and is usually the first to the gate, barefoot, and with a watering can in hand. Even though we have to leave the gardens behind, I’m happy we had the opportunity to do it. We found a family bond, a place where Opal could freely learn about plants and dirt, and let’s not forget to mention, really good, organic food too.

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