Friday, February 27, 2009

"Love at first sight.............Rose Hill Farm"

In the search for Rose Hill Farm....(named in our hearts years before we actually found her) we as a family looked at many farms for sale. Our kids would plead, "We can't LOOK at any more cows!" But we took them with us always. We believed that no decision THIS big could be made by just us. It was a family decision. No farm that we "walked through" was ever quite right for us. And we spent years looking. Too expensive. Too big. Too small. No heating. I could go on forever about what "didn't" work. But this is a story of the Blue Farm House that finally DID work.........
My husband found this one on the internet. He took the kids on a preview "scout" of the location while I was out of town working for a four-day stretch. They peeked in windows and walked the property. There was an apple tree in full bloom. Both kids asked their Dad..."Can we live here?" My husband, in his heart just knew that this was the one and made the appointment as they were driving away. He had to wait four anxiety filled days before I would return home and be able to view the property with the realtor.
I arrived home on a Monday morning after working a four day stretch of 12 hour nights as an RN with an hour and 1/2 drive home. That is some SERIOUS exhaustion! My body was tired but my heart was NOT! I was so ready to see the farm. The kids couldn't say enough good things about it. My husband handed me a cup of coffee and we were in the car and on our way. "Did they really like it?" I asked. "Well, they were able to throw apples at each other for quite a long time so I think they're in!" he replied.
My First Impression......
She was blue! Two story farm house on 10 acres, circular drive, I've always wanted one, pasture for a horse, chicken house with storage, large barn, original wood floors and beautiful wood trim. And my favorite........."Ideal for Restoration."
The house looks much bigger from the outside than it actually is. I remember standing in the kitchen and thinking..."No way"...Our eyes "locked" and I said, "If you promise me we will do an addition I am so in."...We shook hands and closed the deal between us. I promised myself to adjust to living without a dishwasher. There was "none!"
15 minutes later we were in the realtors office signing the papers to purchase our dream. The same day it was SOLD and all those years of waiting were over. Just like that; we were giddy!

I love her. She is 100+ years old. She is blue and that suits her. We all love her. "Rose Hill Farm." Our two-story wood blue farmhouse on 10 acres that took more than 10 years to find, more than 20 actually all together.
We are home..........and our country living has just begun!

Friday, February 20, 2009

The First Year in the Garden (continued....)...

I would like to introduce to you "Lass" our Border Collie. She was a bit "put out" that her photograph was not featured in the above article. That said, "Lass" is usually the first to arrive on the scene when I select a site for a planting. This photograph captures her "ever willing" attitude to all my garden endeavours. She looks at me always as if to say..."We're digging here right?"

The First Year in the Garden

Our first year here on Rose Hill was filled up with many hours of exhausting clean up. We used a total of 3 dumpsters to remove unwanted old furniture, farm machinery parts and other miscellaneous items left on the farm by previous owners. Although hard work it had it's rewards because we were laying claim to our territory and making the farm our own.
Old fence lines and rotted posts were cleared away to make room for trees, shrubs and perennial flowers which we planted in gay abandon.

No outdoor project is completed by oneself. Where ever I am with garden tools in hand you will also find all farm dogs and cats more than willing to help. lol. The above photo captures my frustration and amusement. I no sooner have a hole dug than "someone" wants to test it's size.

I had planned to keep a diary of my progress with meticulous documentation of all varieties of "green-things" planted. What I ended up with was a black garbage full of good items with all those little tags that came with my tree/shrub or flower purchase. I lost track!

We have planted several varieties of apple trees and one pear. At least 4 Kwansan flowering cherry trees. One weeping cherry tree. One yoshino cherry tree. Several dogwoods. Redbuds at least 6 I have planted TWICE because I found to my dismay that deer like them too. My favorites are flowering magnolia trees and I have 3 different varieties that are doing well.

My hats off to Lowes which started my season of spring off in 2008. They were selling azalea bushes for $1.89. I almost "fainted" in the store. There was a huge color and type of azalea to choose from and at last count I planted 36 of them.

I was also fortunate to be able to plant 4 Rhododendrons and 4 Lilac bushes.

I don't know when in our lives we have EVER anticipated a "spring" more than SPRING OF 2009.....I can not WAIT to see how all the trees/shrubs and perennials have wintered and to witness the beauty of their first bloom on Rose Hill Farm.

I forgot to mention that I also tried SEVERAL Cleveland Pear trees thanks to Lowes again and their amazing sales of 2008. I was lucky to find that towards the back of the store they keep several "sale tree" sections that are not well advertised but once I found them I quickly cleaned out the "flowering tree for sale" isle.

When the first blooms appear I will be blogging away to share with you the bounty of Rose Hill Farm and the joy that we experience as we see our dreams come true!