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Come experience life on 20 acres of forest in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains (elevation 1600 feet) near the wild and scenic North Umpqua River in southwest Oregon.
We think we have found paradise here, and for 24 years we have created our home and garden and been stewards of the forest. We are two self-reliant, retired professional women, aged 65 and 73. We both have traveled widely in the United States and to a limited extent abroad. We are readers, cooks, community volunteers, music-lovers, dog-lovers, nature-lovers.
Our quarter-acre organic garden grows vegetables, fruits, herbs, and flowers. We preserve, dehydrate, and freeze what we can't eat and give the excess to friends and the local food pantry. Our friends and family think we’re good cooks, and our guests are well-fed.
Cooking / shopping
Help with Computers / internet
You will experience a different way of life than in urban or suburban America. This is a rural area, and we live a very simple lifestyle, although far from rustic. All of the jobs that need to be done can be taught to anyone with interest and willingness to work. You could learn about harvesting and processing firewood, organic gardening, water conservation techniques, canning and preserving, cooking and bread making.
One of us is originally from Louisiana, so the food sometimes has a Cajun/Creole flair. Other times we like to cook various international cuisines. Share your favorite recipes with us and we'll share ours!
We can also introduce you to a truly beautiful and unique natural area. The North Umpqua River is world-renowned for fly-fishing, and the highway that follows it is a National Scenic Byway. Dozens of waterfalls, stretches of white-water rapids, hiking trails, rocky outcroppings, abundant wildflowers and wildlife, all make it a place to immerse oneself in nature. We are knowledgeable about local birds, wildflowers, trees, hiking trails, and other things to do in the area, and we like to share our knowledge.
March 13, 2020
We are not open to hosting at this time or for the foreseeable future because of the COVID-19 pandemic. There has been a confirmed case in our county. Statewide, gatherings over 250 people are prohibited and schools are closed. Personally, we have stocked up on food and essentials and are planning to stay home except for medical issues. We believe this is what everyone should do to stop the spread of the virus. When this calms down (and eventually it will) we will post here that we are again open to hosting.
As of March 1, 2020:
The weeds are winning, so a concerted effort needs to be made to get them out. Most rows had a cover crop over the winter, which needs to be turned under, or pulled out and put on the compost pile. Rows need to be prepped for planting, including mixing and putting down fertilizer. (We make our own fertilizer from organic ingredients.) Seeds need to be planted, some outside and some started in the greenhouse. Some winter pruning still can be done. We need to bring in a load of potting soil and help will be needed to unload it from our trailer. If you're mechanically handy, the tractor and lawn mower need annual maintenance.
A few garden jobs didn't get done this fall. Strawberry plants need to be cut back and thinned. We have a large pile of aged mulch to be moved and spread on flower beds. That can still be done if we hurry before the perennials start popping up! This is also a good time to check the irrigation system in the flower beds and do any repairs, before vegetation hides it. We'd like to chip some limbs collected from the forest and put it down on the garden paths.
Less urgently -- things that will be worked on when the garden isn't so pressing and into the summer:
In January our tree-cutter come for his annual visit. 13 trees were downed, limbed, and bucked. The mess needs to be cleaned up! Limbs need to be hauled, the rounds moved and stacked. When the ground is drier in the spring, we can get the logsplitter to these locations. Then the rounds will need to be split, hauled to the barn, and stacked. The larger limbs will be chipped and spread, while the smaller ones will be burned.
There is some previously cut firewood still in the woods, in a rather difficult place for getting to with the tractor, that needs to be retrieved by either wheelbarrow or tossing closer to tractor access.
In the woods around the house, it's an ongoing job to clean up and reduce fuel load to reduce summer wildfire risk: cutting underbrush and low limbs, collecting and removing dead material. We have piles of larger limbs that need to be chipped and spread for mulch.
All the help requires that you be used to sustained physical activity.
If you have experience with setting up computer networks, we would love to have you troubleshoot our network. We used to have our two computers networked, but that suddenly stopped working (we suspect a Windows 10 update) and we have not been able to share files or printers ever since.
If you like to cook, we would enjoy tasting your favorite recipes and having an evening free from preparing dinner. Otherwise, we will cook, but we would like help with cleanup.
We prefer to host for a maximum of one week.
English, tiny bit of French
You would use our guest bedroom and guest bath, which are in a separate part of the house from our bedrooms. Two people can be accommodated if they’re a couple, as there is only one bed. You would share our living room, kitchen, dining room, laundry, library, and outdoor spaces such as the patio, deck, and garden pergola. We eat meals together.
We live in a forested area with lots of outdoor recreation opportunities. The North Umpqua River is just over a mile from our house. You can explore back roads in the Umpqua National Forest, hike or mountain bike the many miles of trails , and swim in the river or creeks. We enjoy playing games: ping-pong, badminton, croquet, and washerboard outdoors during the summer, cards and board games indoors. Sometimes we pull out the arts and crafts supplies and turn the kitchen into an art studio. We have lots of books you are welcome to borrow. Our dog would love for you to play with her, or you can relax or snooze in one of the hammocks (weather permitting).
There’s no TV and limited cell phone reception, although there is wi-fi and we like to watch movies. There is no public transportation in this area. The nearest town, with a couple restaurants, gas, post office, and small stores, is 8 miles away. Roseburg is 30 miles and 45 minutes away for grocery shopping and other errands.
The Umpqua Valley is becoming known for its outstanding wine production, with about 30 wineries. If you appreciate wine, during your free time you could take a wine tour and sample some of the local varieties.
We live a quiet life -- no parties, few neighbors, just a few visitors. If you like quiet and solitude, you will enjoy your time here.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
4-5 hrs per day, 5 days a week
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