Just As It Should Be

     What a blessedly busy, full week we are having, just as it should be!  Our weather is spectacular – sunny, warm and absolutely lovely.  We do, however, desperately need some rainfall; but I cannot be too disappointed as we have enjoyed a few days of working outside in the sunshine.


     Homeschooling has, at long last, resumed.  This of course means that William is back to doing his independent work in unusual places while dressed as only he can be dressed.  Today found him seated on a board alongside the unplanted end of our winter garden, enjoying the sunshine while he read, and enjoyed, Five Little Peppers and How They Grew.  His feet, his BARE feet, were resting on the tilled earth.  I’m guessing that top layer of soil had been warmed by the sun!





     The real draw, though, was the fact that his dad was out in the near by orchard.  When Dad’s home, my Will wants to be as close as he can be.  That’s just at it should be!  My husband is still struggling with a nasty, lingering cough and is trying to rid himself of it; but he was still outside working a bit today.  The bare root fruit trees purchased last Friday are now all in the ground.  The drip irrigation lines were worked on to accommodate the newly planted trees.  We only have three trees still to replace to have our orchard back to where it was at one time.  Today’s planting brings the total number of trees in our orchard to 24!  We still need a Pluot, English Walnut and an additional almond tree to finish replacing what was lost over the last few years, and then we can began expanding our orchard a bit.

     Here is a list of the trees we currenlty have in the orchard:

  • 2 peach (different varieties) 
  • 2 Bartlett pear
  • 2 Granny Smith apple
  • 1 Prune
  • 1 Nectarine
  • 1 Almond
  • 2 Santa Rosa Plum
  • 2 Fuji Apple
  • 1 Gala Apple
  • 1 Asian Pear
  • 2 Yellow Delicious Apple
  • 2 D’Anjou Pear 
  • 2 Apricot (different varities)
  • 1 Pomegranite
  • 2 Van Cherry



     The tiny new trees look so promising to me!!!  One of my goals for 2009 was for us to increase the amount of food we raise here on our little bit of land.  Replacing the fruit trees that we have lost is moving toward that goal.  Another step we took today toward that goal is, in a way, a bit counter to the direction I hope to eventually travel.  You see, last year, our orchard produced abundantly.  We were blessed!  Everything came together – temperature, rainfall, bees, etc. – to really produce a wonderful amount of fruit.  However, in our efforts to grow organically, we lost all of our pears and apples to worms!  All of it!!  It was heart breaking.








     I know that there are organic methods available to prevent this particular worm, or to at least limit them; but our infestation was so bad that this year we are spraying our orchard with non-organic sprays.  While it is a step away from my goal to grow organically, it will, Lord willing, enable us to increase the amount of food we are able to eat from our orchard.  The long range goal of organic gardening still exists.  It has just been postponed while we pursue the more crucial goal of increasing our usable harvest.

     This goal, of producing more of our own food, is one that you will hear a lot about this year.  We will, quite soon, be starting seeds indoors for our garden, and the bare root raspberries are yet to be planted.  I called the nursery this afternoon and they are expecting their Jersey Knight asparagus crowns the first of next week.  I even splurged a bit and bought two dormant Rhubarb crowns while we were in town today picking up drippers for the irrigation.

     It’s been so dry here that I had to irrigate the orchard today.  When my husband dug the ground to plant the trees, the soil was pretty dry down at root level.  We irrigated our small citrus orchard yesterday, and I’ll have to water the front flower beds tomorrow. 

     Dani worked hard inside today, managing most of the Wednesday chores on her own, as well as tackling some of the monthly/quarterly tasks.  It certainly was nice to be able to stay outside with my husband, pruning the orchard while he worked on the planting and irrigation and pulling some weeds in the berry patch knowing that things were not falling behind indoors.

     Another goal I set for this year is to redo our main bathroom.  We bought this house ten years ago, and it was a fixer upper then.  Time, finances and circumstances have never lined up quite right for us to be able to do all of the work we have hoped to do.  Things are getting rather desperate in the main bathroom, though.  It is badly in need of paint again.  The enamel on all of the bathroom sinks was chipped and/or peeling when we bought the house, and that has only gotten worse with time.  The sink in the main bathroom is the worst of all.  Don’t even get me started on the faux naugahyde counter tops! 

     It will be a few weeks, yet, before the work on the bathroom begins, and I’m not sure how long it will take to be completed.  However, a color scheme has been chosen, a few sample tiles were purchased today in town, and a stack of paint chips came home as well.  (Too late tonight to take good pictures!)  Dani and I are really excited at the prospect of seeing that bathroom fixed up!

     My evenings have been full of knitting projects.  I started pull over sweaters for all of my grandchildren awhile  back, and am hoping to have all of them done soon.  Both of the girls’ sweaters are done (along with matching knitted hats), and one of my grandson’s sweaters is knitted and ready to be sewn together this evening.  (Again, I apologize, too late for good pictures!)  That leaves just the oldest grandson’s sweater to knit.  I’m planning little matching skirts for the girls and corduroy slacks for the boys to go with the sweaters, and I’m hoping to give them as Valentine’s for my precious grandbabies!  Yikes, just a month to go!  Must.  Work.  Faster!  Speaking of knitting and finished projects, Cathy chose the purple hat.  I will happily send the brown knitted hat to the first person to leave a comment on this post asking me for it.


     January is a busy time on our homestead as we take advantage of bare root planting season, prune dormant trees and vineyards, and continue on with homeschooling and caring for our home.  Yes, we’re busy, and blessed to be so.  The Lord gives us just enough work so that there is always something to be done, and plenty of time, especially in these long winter nights, for rest.  That’s just as it should be!

God bless you as you look well to the ways of your household!
Proverbs 31:27

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6 comments to Just As It Should Be

  • Hi Cheryl, am I first? I don’t know, but if I am WHOHOO.

    BTW, I am sorry that the link for trees didn’t work out. Last time I was going to order from the arbor day foundation they did have nut and fruit trees under their section of trees that attract birds. They used to have packages like flowering trees, land scaping trees…etc.

    Many Blessings 🙂


  • Dang! Ace beat me! And I could have used that hat!! It is 15 BELOW zero today. No school (except home school) no work for Kyle…everything is closed down. They are expecting high winds to join that temp and make it more like 30 below. The image of Will with bare feet sitting in the sun with green lush grass around him is like from another world! It is COOOOOOOLD outside! You know it’s cold when I complain!

    Your orchard sound wonderful, but those bees have to be plenty in the spring, eh?

  • Ace clears throat…”Is this mike on, yes? I would like to thank the academy and the wonderful blog Copper’s wife..this is one of two times I have ever won anything…”

    But, you know what tisNana, you sound like you really, really need that hat! LOL. I was only trying to win because I lLOVE this blog AND Princess Joy and Princess Grace LOVE hats.

     I give my hat to you. Besides, brown isn’t their colors (they are obsessed with pink and purple right now) and they will most likely wrestle each other over it..endlessly…everyday.

    But next time you have a giveaway it will be a fight to the finish LOLOLOLO.

    Many Blessings 🙂


  • @Ace – @tjsNana –   You two crack me up!!!  Hey, Ace…..e-mail me, please   copperswifeATsoftcomDOTnet   Thanks.

  •  Congratulations Ace! 

    Different world is right!  Whew that grass looks wonderful!   We have a wind chill advisory of -10 to -20 until Saturday.  Brrrrr!  Best time to be around the fire!

  • @Ace – @tjsNana –  You guys are way too polite.  Ace, you should have been yelling “It’s mine, it’s aaaaaaaaaaaalllll mine!!!”