Thursday, June 2, 2011

we're in.

Things still feel foggy as I try to find our rhythm once again, but we love the new home and land.  We feel like tourists and one of my favourite things is exploring all the local, true General Stores of the north with seasoned wood floors that groan under even the slightest weight.  You know, the ones who carry everything from your everyday plumbing needs and bait to stylish country clothing and home decor.  Awesome.

Things feel a tad hectic and overwhelming as we try to get everything done at once.  The garden is staked out and we were able to get a few cucumber, pepper, herbs and heirloom tomato plants from the Kinmount Farmer's Market.  We have to turn the soil, add the organic compost from Ellenberger Organic Farm, rent a rototiller, fence it in and plant it this weekend.  Then I would like to paint the upstairs bedrooms.  Then we have the Doors Open next weekend.  After that, we build a chicken coop and find some ladies to fill it.

We were  fortunate enough to stumble upon Jan, a previous owner of our new home, as she sells baked goods at the farmer's market.  I liked her instantly and hope to get together with her to talk history, ghosts and other good stuff over coffee or tea.  She eased some of our 'too-good-to-be-true' type fears.  My first question was if it was haunted to which she replied "it is a happy haunted, not a bad haunted".  Good enough.  As long as they're friendly.  The night before we met her we heard what sounded like someone whispering to Silas over the baby monitor.  In the first couple of days the monitor shut itself off and then on again and the tv shut off randomly a couple of times.  It hadn't happened before and hasn't happened since.  Perhaps they were just saying hello.

On our first full day here we braved the black flies to lay some dandelions on the Mr. Williams' grave.  Mr Williams was the original owner buried on the property in 1892.  Jan also told us there are many unmarked graves around the property as well.

Everything is more intense in the country.  Dark nights seem darker.  Strange noises seem stranger.  Thunder cracks seem louder and closer.  The quiet is deep.
Our bedroom window frames the highest branches of a tall pine and the other morning I laid with a sleeping bird +gnome and watched a yellow finch sing to the sun.  He sang as though its very rising depended upon his song.
Last night I laid in the quiet.  It was so quiet that my first instinct was to panic and feel homesick for the noises of town living; the car doors shutting, the voices of people walking by on the sidewalk, the comfort of the streetlights, headlights and break lights.  Instead of distracting myself or turning the fan on to drown it out, I moved past the panic and stayed with it.  It was crisp, cool, deafening and pure and I felt calm for the first time in a long time.

Blogging has been difficult for me as I struggle to find the time to both think and type whole thoughts, but I am constantly writing wee snapshots in my head.  I have a book in me somewhere and a few weeks ago I awoke with the words to start.  I remember a friend telling me she had taken a writing workshop in which the teacher told them "everyone's story is worth telling".  I will try again to be a reliable and comprehensive blogger and  to re-devote some time and energy back into recording our days and experiences here once the dust settles, but I admit I am struggling to find structure and routine.  I can't seem to find my center or my breath.  I am sure I will find it in one of these boxes someday soon.  Likely the last one I unpack.

If you would like to see more pics you can do so here.

go gently + be wonderful



  1. i grew up in the country and know exactly what you mean by that intense quiet. but it's beautiful, isn't it? there's room for your soul to grow, expand, breathe, and play. your children will flourish. the pictures are beautiful. <3 good luck with the business--it'll soon be over!

  2. 18 years ago my husband, 2 year old son and I embarked on a similar journey. We moved into the 'tinhouse' a century home of a 19th century midwife. It was full of happy ghosts. They helped to fuel my art career. My exhibition 'Foundling' is on at the Agnes Jamieson Gallery in Minden (near you) until June 25. My fifteen year old home schooled daughter Astrid of published her first photographs in my catalogue! Now we live in a new board and batten home on 54 acres near Buckhorn. It is so sweet to read your blog and relive similar moments. From this vantage point I can tell you it is all worthwhile. If you would ever like to come for tea with 'honey' email my daughter Astrid at

  3. There are often blips with the power supply in the country, that would explain the monitor etc cutting out.

  4. Erin. I remember the girl who was a deeply discontented dental assistant, who always had an incredible gift and an inspiring light but hadn't quite found her place yet. You GOT your house in the country!!!!!!! And your incredible, spirited children and ideas and ideas...I have a lump in my throat. It's so beautiful. You are simply amazing and I am so grateful that I can continue to bear witness to you creating the reality you love! Love you!!!!!

  5. Absolutely beautiful, all of it. Wishing you much happiness as you discover and settle in to your new home.

  6. It sounds like a dream come true, ghosts and all (truth be told I love a friendly ghost or too, I feel like they help keep an eye on things). I am insanely jealous and very happy for you guys!

  7. Okay, just looked at pictures and am now EVEN MORE jealous! Seriously, sooo awesome.

  8. This is beautiful and there is so much space. I love that there are happy ghosts roaming the land, and a grave witch to follow them! I love the rough hewn walls with the white furniture. I love the wood floors...It is making me so excited to move into our new house in twenty days...

  9. Welcome to the north country! Lets all hope the black flies die off soon. I'm just east of you and there is no sign of them letting up here as yet.

  10. some words of comfort (i hope)

    first congratulations,

    second, i grew up in the forest and when i was in my twenties and moved to town, all those sounds and lights that you talk about freaked me out, i missed my whipporwills and frogs and the sound of rain on a tin roof, but you are right the sounds of quiet country can be a little daunting, but i love them.

    third, i grew up in an old home with a ghost. Mr. Tunueman the man who built, lived and died in our house, or so they say. When we heard footsteps on the stairs, or creaking across the upstairs floorboards or doors would swing shut we would say, oh, there's Mr. Tunueman.

    i hope you find your center soon, once the piles clear away, and about your story, i hope it is quiet enough there that it can come to life.

    good luck!


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