Dear Reader,
They're back! Gordon and Gordeeta have returned for good! And surprise...! They returned with their three offspring from last year! They've never done that before so it will be interesting to see how all this works out.
It was so cute, though, when they returned. They came up by the cottage, walked all along the road, just liked they used to, and then they took the "kids" over to the nest area where the goslings were born. Honestly, I feel I could hear them say, "and this is where you debuted last year!" It was the cutest thing!

On a very sad note, Uncle Harold passed away early Monday morning or late Sunday. His funeral was on Wednesday in Maquoketa, Iowa. It was a beautiful service at Sacred Heart Catholic Church and at the cemetary where he is buried now next  to my Aunt Donna. I will miss him so much. He was a wonderful uncle - teaching me to walk on my hands, and teaching me about tenacity. A good lesson to learn! It was good to see the extended family - just not under those circumstances. Uncle Harold fought in WWII and won two bronze medals. He was a prince of a guy. My aunt Mimi attended the funeral with her whole family, but sadly, my mother did not go. I represented all of Mom's side of the family. Linda wished she could have been there so much! Jeff and Angela, too.

It was at Uncle Harold's funeral where we heard we had a new Pope. I am not Catholic, but I am hopeful that Pope  Francis will emulate his namesake and give a voice to those who have no voice. On a much smaller scale, that is what we are doing with Spray Drift Education Network. (

Speaking of Pesticide spray drift, I have been invited to blog for Mother Earth News magazine on spray drift issues. I am honored to be asked. I have sent in my bio and my first blog. The editor of the blog has sent me a link and it looks really  good. There are a couple of changes, and then it will be online sometime next week. I am happy to be part of this vital issue.

Sweet Katie, Chloe and Jack are all under the weather. Had a trip to the doctor's a few days ago. As Angela said in her text to me, "The fun never stops!"

There is another good-bye I am making with this blog. In fact, dear Reader, this will be my last blog under "buildthathouse." No worries, though, dear Reader, if you have been following along on this blog. It all will be changed soon to a new website named "restorethatfarm." This is an update which I think is more in keeping with my plans for The Land. I have not built that house on the hill yet, but as you know after a decade of no well and septic (and using my shovel to go out to the woods to use the 'restroom') I did put in a well and septic in 2010...and even a lovely carriage house. Even though my cottage is still small by some standards, the garage-turned-library has been wonderful, and I am quite contented here. 

My main emphasis now is to restore my land with permaculture plantings which will produce staple crops - not annually, but permanently - improving the soil, water and air as the trees grow. I am so excited about this. 

Dear Reader, you are invited to come along with me to my next website. All the previous blogs I have written including this one will be switched over and not lost. So you should feel right at home. At least I hope you do, dear Reader, for that is my intention!

There will still be the same crazy characters around - like Chris and Smitty - and Dave and Derrick with his excavator (as we have more excavating to do!). I'm sure there will be many more, too! So stay tuned, dear Reader, and enjoy the process with me!



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