On Sunday, the Tumwater Middle School Homesteader class and their parents had the open house for the start of the new school year here under the butternut tree. The Tumwater Historical Association sponsors this group of 8th graders throughout the year including the open house celebration. The Thurston County Historical Commission contributed funds and brought a display about George Bush and his son Owen and the SPSCC archeology students and staff brought artifacts from the Bush farm. The best part (besides having the kids here in pioneer dress) was Ray Egan's impersonation of Ezra Meeker talking about his good friend, George Bush. Ray is an extraordinarily talented storyteller and to hear the story of George and Isabella Bush under the butternut tree they planted 166 years ago was pretty amazing. We owe thanks to all who contributed to make this quite a memorable event.
Alot has happened since the last blog. We said good bye to Big Red and his 3 steer friends. They chewed the pasture down pretty well and it was time to go to greener pastures which translates to the Colvin Ranch where their permanent home is and there is more food. With the departure of the cattle, we continue to be on the look out for deer. So far, the electric fence and the new 8' fence we put up around the rest of the gardens seems to deter them.
This part of the season is dedicated to harvesting. Tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, peppers, eggplant, and green beans coming on and on and on. They are in the house refrigerator, on the counter in the kitchen, in the metal building, in the walk-in cooler, and in the field. We are grateful to have the problem of too much rather than too little, but it's a bit overwhelming to say the least. Every subscriber box is loaded to the max--I bet they feel a bit overwhelmed as well. The challenge of using all of those great vegetables--we have canned dill pickles and salsa, frozen beans, peas, broccoli, and tomatoes, and are trying our first brine pickles. Today we had a visit from a special young woman who might be the best dressed person to ever visit the farm. Ella, whom we have known since she was born, brought her mom to gather vegetables for a Girl Scout function and for the Roosevelt Elementary School fundraiser. She agreed to pose for pictures in the sunflowers and the tomato tunnel (although she did not really care for the tomato tunnel--too many spiders). Her beautiful pictures are below.
This blog reflects the journey of Kathleen and Mark who have left suburbia to steward this historical property and transform the land back into a working farm.