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Being away from Enchanted Meadows for more than a month just feels wrong…and it was more than a month and it felt wrong. The place was ready for us, too. The wood pile and garden were in dire need for care.

We arrived to this:

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At the end of the weekend, we left this:

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Turning all the soil was quite a bit of work, but I love getting my hands dirty and feeling and smelling the soil.

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I planted green bush beans and cherry tomatoes.

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John replenished the woodpile with madrone logs.

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The Dutch Irises displayed their beautiful blue.

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It was so wonderful to be back at Enchanted Meadows! Be back soon.

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Sharing the House

It is so gratifying to share our humble house in Anchor Bay. Our last guests spent the weekend to get away from the hustle and bustle of the Bay Area. After their stay, Gregory sent me this amazing photo he took at night. Gorgeous colors. Thank you, Gregory!

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Bright Yellow

Nothing symbolizes spring to me like the bright yellow of daffodils. I love seeing those vibrant yellow patches all along Highway 1 when we drive up to Enchanted Meadows. I want to plant many, many more of them on our hill so that it can glow in yellow in the early spring and make it look even more enchanted. What a magical place!

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Schooner Gulch State Beach is my favorite beach in the world. It’s so otherworldly. There are two locations that have this geological formation of perfectly rounded boulders: New Zealand and Mendocino County.

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I was so excited to show this amazing spot to my god daughter when she visited in December. Unfortunately, the minus tide was really late in the day and it was getting dark, so we didn’t have a chance to walk the whole beach, but we climbed up to the bluffs and looked north and down on the beach. With a passing winter storm, this was a breathtaking yet somewhat ominous view. I love how the coast offers different perspectives every time you visit.

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Point Arena has some of the best rockfish fishing anywhere! On Sunday, we were lucky enough to be invited by Captain Kane to prospect for some salmon and rockfish on his Farallon. Unlike other harbors, there is no ramp at Arena Cove. Instead, the boats are lowered into the water by a hoist. This is a little unnerving to watch the first time you see it.

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The salmon fishing wasn’t very successful, but the rockfish did their part. With five people, we came back with a nice box of fish

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Thank you Captain Kane!

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Naked Lady 1

Every August, clusters of pink, funnel-shaped flowers on erect, naked stems fill the air with a sweet bubble gum smell. The leafless stems give this gorgeous flower its common name: Naked Lady. The botanical name is Amaryllis belladonna and the plant is native to South Africa, yet widely cultivated in California and other parts of the world. We only have a handful of them scattered on the hillside, but I look forward to their beauty and fragrance every year.

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The Early Girl tomatoes are the smallest specimen I’ve ever seen, but they are super flavorful. I guess it’s just too dry, even though the drip irrigation is on every day. The cherry tomatoes are doing OK and also very flavorful and sweet. We got a decent plate full of tomatoes

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which turned into a great tomato salad for dinner.

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Berries are a true sign of sweet summer. We harvested the very first cherry tomatoes this weekend. There weren’t that many, but they were sweet and delicious; a reminder that tomatoes are in fact berries.

Then we picked wild blackberries, found a fantastic spot on our way home in Bodega Bay. We filled three buckets in a little over an hour and they were big and tasty.

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Time to make jam since I am not much of a baker.

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And voila, 18 jars of homemade blackberry jam – enough to last until next year.Of course that is not the way it works, we’ll give lots of it away and will go berry picking again and make more jam. I love summer!

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