I love my new (old) door hung as a barn door

A 217-year-old homestead tends to have a ton of junk fascinating history stories laying around, so this month we gave new life to an old door we uncovered in our barn. We’re using the old door inside with barn door hardware. Of course. A lover of history, I adore giving something old a new purpose. So when my hubby started talking […]

My Tapestry… a rich history of family farming

I come from a history of family farming. Needless to say, with that history of family farming comes a beautiful history of family stories. Family stories that are often treasured memories and unforgettable heartbreak woven together. The tapestry often turns out to be beautiful, in the end, and for that I am grateful. This past week my daughters and I […]

Don’t Miss this Autumn Jewel: the Harvest Moon

“Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.” Or so Anton Chekhov wrote. I’m reminded of the quote as I scratch “Harvest Moon” on a Sunday square of the calendar. As a writer, I wholeheartedly agree with the Russian author. As a teacher, I instruct my students to interrogate all of […]

Industrious Stories

Sometimes one daughter enlightens me about the latest livestock fact she learned on a homesteading website while we turn over a new garden bed. Sometimes another daughter describes detailed plays from last night’s softball game while we rake, side-by-side. Grandparents, painted rocks, country songs, varieties of tomatoes, and life cycles of snapping turtles–they’re all topics of different discussions that […]

History of the Lilac Bush

Before we moved to our New England farmhouse, which was built around 1800, I had never even considered the history of the lilac bush. Once I discovered the beautiful antique blooms in so many corners of our homestead, I was inquisitive to know if these fragrant trees had possibly been planted here long ago. DISCLOSURE: Do […]

Reaping a Harvest

Surely it had been bathed in the light of the Harvest Moon hundreds of times before–our little red cape that sits at the bend in the road. There where the lake greets the river in rolling melodies, spilling over the dam, the full moons of many Septembers have certainly rolled their bright lullabies over the humble clapboard walls […]

History you can feel in your toes

It had been six long weeks. Three of research: internet, calls, emails. Three of sharpening and scraping: inch by inch, board by board. She helped me with devoted zeal and did more work than I… the daughter who always stares big jobs in the face, non-perplexed, and works till they’re done. The daughter who always respected […]

Redeeming Prior Glory

The morning sunlight, infused by the old wavy panes of glass, loped around the dark-stained, wide floor planks. Boxes were still unpacked. Walls were in need of paint. The barn and storage units were overflowing with our furniture. But those worn, neglected boards called for attention. Did the men who crafted them more than 200 years ago know […]

Patriotic floor boards

My wide pine flooring is patriotic. No, my floor boards aren’t red, white, and blue. In fact, in some places the centuries-old planks are horribly worn, with no stain at  all. But their age and width tell me they’re patriotic. Our New Hampshire farmhouse was built right after the Revolutionary War. And one of the little […]