Homestead Update: part 1
We have been living in Essex for a little while now and it feels like we have always been here. We love the small friendly community, the marsh, the fields and forests.
But long story short we bought an acre of completely overgrown / forested steep north east slope with a small (about 1000 square feet) late 1800's farm house nestle into the hill side, near the bottom. Just beyond our property at the top of the hill is a big open field, below us is a large farm that stables horses with open fields and tall pines surrounding it. If you climb up the tallest pine at the top of our property, you can see the ocean.
We are redoing the house, one project at a time. We ripped out carpet off of every surface and took down wallpaper. We laid new floors and refinished old ones. We painted, oh we painted. We built shelves and bookcases, shoe racks and any other pieces we needed out of reclaimed wood. Only a few places feel finished, the living room and stairway. Everything else is at varying levels of completion, but we don't mind, we love making this house our home.
But our greatest efforts are to turn the acre into beautiful and productive gardens, a permaculture homestead. We have cut down trees, split and stacked wood for days. We have moved earth and terraced the slope and dug out the footprint for the root cellar, ponds and a patio. We built stone walls and stone staircase. We ripped up asphalt and made hugelkultur (hill culture) beds and began planting trees and shrubs. Little by little we are transforming the space in to the orchards and gardens of our dreams.
So here are some photo updates of the front area right by the house and of the living room and stair way.
These first two are from the realtor website, with 40+ foot spruce trees taking over on the east side of the house.
Right after moving in...
Project cutting up asphalt and installing front walk and gardens fall 2015 and no more spruce trees.
This winter with repainted trim and stone boulder placed and more trees have ben clear on the hill, but this picture is before the terraced happened in the back and front.
In the next few months as everything comes to life will will take an updated photo of the front, we can't wait to see it all growing again!
Here is the living room / stair way before and after.
Stairway after ripping out old carpet.
Living room projects...rip out carpeting, repaint, refinish oak floors, building bookcase.
Stairway projects...rip out carpet, strip multiple layers of paint of stairs, refinish stairs,
repaint walls, add light fixture.