What an outstanding idea for a book!  Draped in soft green leather and adorned with photographs and calligraphy title headings such “Our Life on the Land,” “Places on the Land,”  “The Neighbors,” Wildflowers,” “Birds,” “Mammals,” “Reptiles,” “The Garden Journal,” “Celebrations,” “Visitors,” “Weather,” and “Unusual Events,” this hand-made tome, lovingly crafted by my wife is perhaps the finest gift I have ever received.

Since 1991, The Land Book has tracked more than 20 years of gardening bounty as well as tough growing seasons, births, weddings, and deaths, incredible wildlife sightings, home improvements, and much more.

The Land Book is the collector of memories, of snowstorms that stranded us without power and snapped ancient oaks like toothpicks.  When we need to know when to plant a certain vegetable in spring, we simply rely on the garden record and we are likely to have success.

I love the photographs of our neighbors.  Except for two dear ones that have passed on, essentially all of them are still here, never tempted to move from this sacrosanct place.  All these good folks are settlers here for at least two decades, and they have stayed in tune with the movements of this small, glorious piece of Earth, while babysitting our children, participating in Music Nights, and helping, always helping out.

Who says we live int he middle of nowhere?  This can’t be true as we turn page after page of the Land Book’s guest sign-ins.  Hundreds of hundreds of guests have graced our home for celebratory events, simply to visit, to work, or to play outdoors.

The Land Book has captured much of everything important that has happened here and the essence of this place is summed up in the following poem:

I love this home
In spring
When the morning light
Streams in
When flowers grace the sill
When brown breathes green

Natives return on the wing
I love this home
In June
Knowing grown children will arrive soon
The garden out the back window
Arcs of the oak rainbow
A long respite from cold and rain
Lengthening days, a sun’s refrain

I’d rather be in this house
in fall
Than anywhere at all
Wood is delivered, cut and stacked
T-shirts are packed; sweaters are back
Tea is the drink
To make rosy cheeks
Alarm clocks and school bells ring
One child leading the first string.

Winter turns this house white
Sitting by the cozy hearth
Celebrations echo bright
chill can never enter this hallowed place
Where warm memories
Dance and race

I love this house
Through out the year
Especially, especially
When you are here ~

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