In February of 2009, my husband and I bought our first home located on a few acres in Johnson, Vermont. We live here with our dog, Ollie, two cats: Elvis and Atticus, six Nigerian Dwarf goats: May, Chutney, Poppy, Juniper, Willow, and Jokers Wild, and about fifteen laying hens. And to top it all off we welcomed our daughter, Isabel, into the world on January 11th, 2011.

We're slowly updating our 1850's farmhouse while steadily working towards a healthy, meaningful, self-sufficient life together.

This blog details our endeavors along with our successes and failures- all in good fun. Thanks for stopping by, hope to see you again soon!


May and I enjoying some sunshine


Animal Farm

Lovingly Posted by Melissa Thursday, February 11, 2010

Have you ever read George Orwell's Animal Farm?  Great book.  Seriously creepy, but very interesting.  Basically the pigs get all the farm animals to drive the farmer away and take over the farm themselves.  Eventually, at the end of the book, the pigs start walking upright and live in the house and drink whiskey like the farmer had done before them.  The original goal had been to create a utopia where all animals are equal and do their part- but the pigs are corrupt and therefore their revolution falls to pieces and the rest of the farm animals are right back to where they started, if not worse.

Anways, its a good book.  At the heart of it, it really isn't about farm animals at all, but thats another discussion by someone much more versed in political satire than I.  But it still has a good story.  Take good care of your animals or they might revolt and drive you out of the house, breed evil dogs, kill your horse, and then start drinking your whiskey.


  2. I've been out of touch for a little while so I did some back reading of your comments.

    You and hubby are amazing. How do you do so much? It's heavenly being young and energetic. I can remember the feeling.

    Your homestead is growing wonderfully.

    As to no-till gardening, look up "Square Foot Gardening". I adapted the technique and used it in my back yard last year. (I didn't bother making the 1' square markings). I wrote several posts to my blog about it. We were very pleased with the outcome. It takes a bit of work to get started, but that's nothing new to you. Yours should be much better than mind since you have wonderful free fertiziler available for your compost pile.

    Congratulations on all you are achieving.

  3. Adam Says:
  4. It's good to see you guys are doing so well. I could probably score you some calf hutches if they would help out. Plus I haven't seen Kyle in about seven years. Man time flys. I am super busy and don't get out much but I need to get in contact with Kyle sometime soon. Adam Bushey

  5. Melissa Says:
  6. CF- I'm not sure how we manage to do all this...enthusiasm certainly is 90% of it. :)
    Thanks for the tip! Yes, I've heard of this technique and I'm going to be doing a larger version of it I found in Ed Smith's Vegetable Gardener's Bible. I can't wait!!! I'll take a look at your blog for your variation. :)

    Adam- wow! I know we've got a unique last name but I have to admit that Kyle and I were amazed that you stumbled upon the blog! Yes, you should email Kyle- he has the same email address he had in HS...not sure if you remember it or not. Or if you like you could leave your email or something and Kyle can get back to you...are you still living up here in N. VT?

  7. Adam Says:
  8. I can't remember what his email was but my email is franklinrental@hotmail.com I still live in St. Albans. I have been crazy busy for the past seven or so years, so I have been out of touch with everyone. I got married in 2004, built my house in 2005, adopted my first son in 2005, had our first daughter in 2005, and had our boy/girl twins in 2007. Needless to say my wife and I have to fight for our own quality time togeather. It has been a wild crazy ride but I wouldn't change it for the world, things are starting to calm down a bit and I acutaly googled Kyle Senesac wondering if he was in Montana or Vermont and came across your site. I haven't seen Kyle for ages and am glad to see that you guys are doing so well.

  9. Melissa Says:
  10. hah! thats crazy! I passed along your email addy to Kyle so hopefully you guys can catch up. :)
    I know what you mean, though...we don't have kids yet but our house/farm really keeps us super busy.
    Sounds like you guys have a pretty great thing going as well. :)