Taming the Wild: Year Zero

We purchased the five acre property and small ranch-style home in March 2011. The property backed up to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and had little fencing or infrastructure but lots of weeds, tall grass, manzanita, a few oak and pine trees. It was so natural the coyotes, foxes, skunks, deer and other wildlife felt completely comfortable roaming the property, even right up to our doorstep!

The coyotes, however, were not the only howling going on. The late afternoon winds were wreaking havoc on keeping dirt and debris out of the pool and out of our open windows.

sO most of the first year in 2011-2012 we spent repairing and upgrading the nearly 30 year old home as well as clear-cutting the overgrown trees and brush closest to the home to give a 100′ fire break. As the boys took care of repairs, chain sawing and wood chopping, mom, of course, learned how to operate a gas-powered weed eater and a backpack sprayer.

We also boarded up and chicken wired an old shed attached to the house to make a temporary chicken coop. Our first six hens, now full sized, finally had a home.