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Storm Bella raged through the night. In the morning, Mr and the Enting did a boundary walk to look for fallen trees and other damage. While I cleaned up our breakfast and got a fire going in the wood stove, I considered what a strange and eventful few weeks we’ve had since we been called to Owlshire. Boiler and fuel supply problems, an historical flood, unexpected severe allergies to sections of the house, leaks in buildings, now a major wind storm... all within the already surreal year that is 2020.

 

But the year was turning, and we’d made it through midwinter in the Forest, and there is much Keeping to do. Having received the prestigious new title Keeper of the Flame from the Home Office, I had a lot to prove—to them, to myself, and to the World Soul that reached her glowing fingers into this sacred place.

 

 

In summary: a 41 year old American emigrated to England. Mum of Enting, a 2.5 year old agent of chaos. Kitchen witch, gamer (mostly LARP, TT RPGs and board games), knitter/spinner, writer, returning smallholder.

 

In late November 2020, my family completed a Master Quest to move from central London to our woodland dream property. Now we’re settling into our new home—dubbed Owlshire—in a beautiful part of the Forest of Dean.

 

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For this challenge, I’m focusing on a few areas I want to make progress in. Progress is measured on XP per task, but I’m also including maximums to keep balance among them so I don’t, say, just write stories the whole time instead of working on the garden or getting fit!

 

WARNING: There will be picspam of Owlshire, surrounding areas, and Enting.

 

Stoke the Hearth Fire

  • 1XP per day engaged in a creative activity (probably woolly related, but may not be). This may also include events (spontaneous or planned) that similarly bring joy. Maximum per week - 5XP
  • 2XP per day that I complete my household chore rota. No maximum.

 

Keep

  • 1XP per day per task related to future self-sufficiency - IE, continuing the set up the future gardens/orchard/etc., collecting or processing firewood, etc. Max per week - 10XP.
  • Research can count, but only for 3XP per week maximum.

 

Stay Strong

  • 1XP each day I have PAI average above 50. No maximum.
  • 1XP each day I walk 4+ miles according to my Fitbit. No maximum.

 

Map the Leylines

  • 1XP for local walks off my property, 3XP if I’m doing a new-to-me route. Max 5XP per week.
  • If I participate in the Slow Ways launch week—no maximum for that week.
  • Research can count (such as learning new flora and fauna in the area or looking into human history), but only up to 1XP per week.

 

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Restore

  • 1XP per task related to restoring or preserving the outbuildings, fences, trails, and other infrastructure. Max 10XP per week.

 

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Tales of Owlshire

  • 5XP per narrative story installment told on my thread. Max 10XP per week.

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Quests

  • Bonus points received for completion of quests on my “Level Up Your Life” list.

 

Goal: Reach 200XP to Keeper of the Flame Level 2.

 

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Druid and Adventurer

The Wye/Dean, UK

Current Storyline: Tales of Owlshire | 0 | 1

Previous  Storyline: The Entwife’s Heart | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

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I loved hearing tales of Owlshire last challenge, and I'm looking forward to hearing more this time around :)

 

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"The old that is strong does not wither, deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken, a light from the shadows shall spring."

 

iatetheyeti's odyssey: part one || part two

 

Yeti on Flickr - Facebook - Instagram

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What an amazing place this you moved too! I am so jealous right now!

Wish you the best on this new stage of your life!

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The Wolverine - Level 5 // BER  6.5 // HEA  4 // STR  4.4 // STA  3 // DEX  4 // CON  4 // WIS  4.75 // CHA  1

He who conquers others is strong; he who conquers himself is mighty.

Adventures don't start until you get into the forest.

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Here to support you, enjoy the picspam, and fall in love with Owlshire. I have dreams about places like where you live, in which everytime I turn around there is something new and interesting to see. They are good dreams. Looking at the pictures makes me feel like one of those dreams.

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Current Challenge Original 1,2,3, R 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22,23,24,25,26,27,28,29,30,31,32,33,34,35,36,37,38,39,40,41,42,43,44,45,46,47,48,49,50,51

52

"By the Most-Righteous-and-Blessed Beard of Sir Tanktimus the Encourager!" - Jarl Rurik Harrgath

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Following will definitely help me with the big goals and challenges I've got lined up. Seeing pics of Owlshire will definitely inspire me to hit the trails with a camera.

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Level 3, Rebel

Currtent Challenge
Previously known as: Curl Brogo, Darwins_Demon, Vincent Van Bro

2020 Respawn Battle Log || Tarly's Ten Level Nutrition Plan

My Fitness Pal Profile || NF Epic Quest Character Page || Instagram

Weight Loss Quest: Start 270 lbs., Goal 199 lbs., Current 270 lbs., Waist: ,45.0 in., Bodyfat%: 33%

 

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Well met, and what a lovely space you are sharing with us! Hestia would be proud.

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&,
Amazon of the Way

Gypsy Druid Paladin

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Here for the continuing tales of Owlshire, where I always feel I need to come to your thread with a large cup of tea in hand :)

 

I love the first picture of you and Enting on your back!

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Rangers Gonna Ranger

Current Challenge: The Adventures of Rhovaniel: Vol I

Previous Challenges: 1|2|3|4|5|6|7|8|9|10|11|12|13 1415|16|17|18|19|20|21|22|23|24|25

 

2021 Quests:

Run 3 Laps of Oblivion| Run and Complete Man vs Lakes | Achieve a full pull up| Achieve 10+ unbroken push ups| Write 90,000+ words of a novel (0/90,000)| Read at least 20 books (4/20)

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Self sufficiency and photo spam? I’m here for it! What a charming nook of the world you have ❤️

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21 hours ago, annyshay said:

You moved to an Enchanted Forest!!!!! And Enting is getting so big! Also, your goals and XP plan are masterful. Here for all of this!

 

Glad to have you! ❤️ 

 

19 hours ago, iatetheyeti said:

I loved hearing tales of Owlshire last challenge, and I'm looking forward to hearing more this time around :)

 

 

Thank you!

 

18 hours ago, Lara said:

What an amazing place this you moved too! I am so jealous right now!

Wish you the best on this new stage of your life!

 

I’m looking forward to reading about the adventures in your new life stage, too!

 

17 hours ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

Here to support you, enjoy the picspam, and fall in love with Owlshire. I have dreams about places like where you live, in which everytime I turn around there is something new and interesting to see. They are good dreams. Looking at the pictures makes me feel like one of those dreams.

 

I think I said on a previous thread that there are places and moments that always leave me in awe that this is all real, and I’m actually here. I feel that way about Owlshire, and I hope I always will. I’m glad I can share some of that feeling with the Rebellion. 

 

12 hours ago, Stronkey Kong said:

 

Following will definitely help me with the big goals and challenges I've got lined up. Seeing pics of Owlshire will definitely inspire me to hit the trails with a camera.

 

Happy to hear I’m providing some inspiration ^ _^ I remember you talking about homesteading on a previous challenge, is it still something you aspire to?

 

12 hours ago, Harriet said:

I'm here to look at woolly projects and pictures of the land and pretend I live in a tiny England forest as well. I hope the house restoration goes smoothly from now on.

 

Endless little problems arise, but nothing we can’t cope with ^_^ 

 

12 hours ago, Heidi said:

Well met, and what a lovely space you are sharing with us! Hestia would be proud.

 

Thank you!

 

11 hours ago, Rhovaniel said:

Here for the continuing tales of Owlshire, where I always feel I need to come to your thread with a large cup of tea in hand :)

 

I love the first picture of you and Enting on your back!

 

Tea for sympathy? XD Thanks, I love being strong enough to carry him, although he’s less and less interested as he gets older.

 

9 hours ago, KB Girl said:

Definitely here to enjoy all the pictures and tales of Owlshire. 

 

Happy to have you along!

 

7 hours ago, Yasha92 said:

Self sufficiency and photo spam? I’m here for it! What a charming nook of the world you have ❤️

 

Thank you! Welcome back! 

  • Like 3

Druid and Adventurer

The Wye/Dean, UK

Current Storyline: Tales of Owlshire | 0 | 1

Previous  Storyline: The Entwife’s Heart | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

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I’m told other parts of the Forest of Dean higher up have seen more, but Owlshire has received a little dusting of her first snow (since we got here) over the last couple of days.

 

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Like with the floods of last week (was that only last week?) many roads are closed or ill advised to travel on, and we risk getting cut off because we live in a steep hillside—but we have a full hopper of fuel for our boiler, firewood, and the grocery delivery came Sunday our pantry is well stocked. If we’re going to be trapped, there is no better way to be.

 

—Although, a local handyman who has been helping us with the various little problems we’ve had just called a few minutes ago (after I wrote that first part) to confirm that it wasn’t good weather for working on a roof, but if we needed milk or bread or anything because the hill is too icy, he’d be happy to come down with supplies (he drives here when he’s working, of course, but there’s a short footpath between us and where he lives).—

 

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I am often astonished by the spirit of cooperation we’ve seen from the village. We’ve only met a handful so far because of the pandemic, but all of them have been so lovely and generous and helpful.  We may be geographically isolated, but maybe we are not so cut off as it may seem even as strangers who have arrived in Strange Times.

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Druid and Adventurer

The Wye/Dean, UK

Current Storyline: Tales of Owlshire | 0 | 1

Previous  Storyline: The Entwife’s Heart | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

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Even with only a little snow, it looks gorgeous. And it's great that you're found yourself in such a helpful and generous little community. I do hope that hill doesn't ice up too much though!

 

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"The old that is strong does not wither, deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken, a light from the shadows shall spring."

 

iatetheyeti's odyssey: part one || part two

 

Yeti on Flickr - Facebook - Instagram

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5 minutes ago, iatetheyeti said:

Even with only a little snow, it looks gorgeous. And it's great that you're found yourself in such a helpful and generous little community. I do hope that hill doesn't ice up too much though!

 

 

Mr was able to go into the village without problems (although the High Street is still partially closed due to last week’s flood damage—part of the road caved in), so we’re good there. 

 

We haven’t met too many people in the centre of the village, but those of us on this lane on the outskirts of the village (particularly the newcomers) see the benefits of a cooperative community. 

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Druid and Adventurer

The Wye/Dean, UK

Current Storyline: Tales of Owlshire | 0 | 1

Previous  Storyline: The Entwife’s Heart | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

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13 minutes ago, Ann of Owlshire said:

 

Mr was able to go into the village without problems (although the High Street is still partially closed due to last week’s flood damage—part of the road caved in), so we’re good there. 

 

We haven’t met too many people in the centre of the village, but those of us on this lane on the outskirts of the village (particularly the newcomers) see the benefits of a cooperative community. 

 

Small town/village flood damage is always fun to deal with... I'm sure the snow and ice damage will come along shortly! Of course, there's always the chance your local council is one of the few who actually properly maintains the roads and the like. Here's hoping!

 

  • Like 1

"The old that is strong does not wither, deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken, a light from the shadows shall spring."

 

iatetheyeti's odyssey: part one || part two

 

Yeti on Flickr - Facebook - Instagram

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4 minutes ago, iatetheyeti said:

 

Small town/village flood damage is always fun to deal with... I'm sure the snow and ice damage will come along shortly! Of course, there's always the chance your local council is one of the few who actually properly maintains the roads and the like. Here's hoping!

 

 

From what I’ve been told, a lot of maintenance (plowing little lanes, cleaning storm drains) happens by the locals because they don’t want to wait for the council to get around to it XD Mr and the neighbours are already discussing cleaning the storm drains on our lane soon. The damage to the High Street, however, is a bit more major. It’s quite rare to see flood problems in the upper/high part of the village—that was what was so unusual about last week’s flood! Apparently the culvert overflowed significantly and weakened the road until it fell in.

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Druid and Adventurer

The Wye/Dean, UK

Current Storyline: Tales of Owlshire | 0 | 1

Previous  Storyline: The Entwife’s Heart | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

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9 minutes ago, Ann of Owlshire said:

 

From what I’ve been told, a lot of maintenance (plowing little lanes, cleaning storm drains) happens by the locals because they don’t want to wait for the council to get around to it XD Mr and the neighbours are already discussing cleaning the storm drains on our lane soon. The damage to the High Street, however, is a bit more major. It’s quite rare to see flood problems in the upper/high part of the village—that was what was so unusual about last week’s flood! Apparently the culvert overflowed significantly and weakened the road until it fell in.

 

Makes sense. When I lived in the Highlands it was a case of either the locals did it or it likely wouldn't get done. Even then, nothing we can do about actual structure problems... It's why the place was so full of potholes, often more pothole than road... 

 

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"The old that is strong does not wither, deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken, a light from the shadows shall spring."

 

iatetheyeti's odyssey: part one || part two

 

Yeti on Flickr - Facebook - Instagram

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Mr had been lamenting the lack of game meat this season, so when I saw a pheasants on sale, I picked up a couple. Last night, I made pot roast whole pheasants with cider, and red cabbage. Then I took the carcasses and chucked them into the Instant Pot to make broth overnight.

 

Tonight I used the broth and remaining bits of meat to make a pheasant/pied-de-mouton mushroom risotto. It was rich and lovely and I’m pleased to have made two nice meals from those sale pheasants!

 

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Druid and Adventurer

The Wye/Dean, UK

Current Storyline: Tales of Owlshire | 0 | 1

Previous  Storyline: The Entwife’s Heart | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

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34 minutes ago, Ann of Owlshire said:

Mr had been lamenting the lack of game meat this season, so when I saw a pheasants on sale, I picked up a couple. Last night, I made pot roast whole pheasants with cider, and red cabbage. Then I took the carcasses and chucked them into the Instant Pot to make broth overnight.

 

Tonight I used the broth and remaining bits of meat to make a pheasant/pied-de-mouton mushroom risotto. It was rich and lovely and I’m pleased to have made two nice meals from those sale pheasants!

 

That is awesome! That is something I'd definitely like to do more of--having more of a plan for things to get used in multiple ways rather than, "oh, let's have chicken--The End"

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Pheasants sound lovely the way you made them! I don’t think I have ever had pheasant... when I was a kid my grandparents bred meat rabbits and I am interested to try rabbit again as an adult to see if I like it (and importantly, whether Mr will eat it!), because if so that could form a part of the long term homestead plan... with taters, of course.

the lord of the rings actor GIF

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4 hours ago, Ann of Owlshire said:

Mr had been lamenting the lack of game meat this season, so when I saw a pheasants on sale, I picked up a couple. Last night, I made pot roast whole pheasants with cider, and red cabbage. Then I took the carcasses and chucked them into the Instant Pot to make broth overnight.

 

Tonight I used the broth and remaining bits of meat to make a pheasant/pied-de-mouton mushroom risotto. It was rich and lovely and I’m pleased to have made two nice meals from those sale pheasants!

 

That sounds amazing.

 

It's brought up this very vivid memory from a time when I must have only been about three or four. My grandad hunted pheasants from time to time, and he'd brought some round to ours and had them hung up in the kitchen as he plucked them. I remember being allowed to pluck some of the bigger feathers.

 

I'm assuming we ate them afterwards, but there the memory stops.

 

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"The old that is strong does not wither, deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken, a light from the shadows shall spring."

 

iatetheyeti's odyssey: part one || part two

 

Yeti on Flickr - Facebook - Instagram

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14 hours ago, Ann of Owlshire said:

 

Happy to hear I’m providing some inspiration ^ _^ I remember you talking about homesteading on a previous challenge, is it still something you aspire to?

 

 

 

Urban homesteading more likely.  I don't think I'd find such pretty country or kind neighbors as Owlshire unless I can make a bigger move. 

 

Um... 

 

Would you mind if I make paintings from some of your photos?

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Level 3, Rebel

Currtent Challenge
Previously known as: Curl Brogo, Darwins_Demon, Vincent Van Bro

2020 Respawn Battle Log || Tarly's Ten Level Nutrition Plan

My Fitness Pal Profile || NF Epic Quest Character Page || Instagram

Weight Loss Quest: Start 270 lbs., Goal 199 lbs., Current 270 lbs., Waist: ,45.0 in., Bodyfat%: 33%

 

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18 hours ago, sylph said:

That is awesome! That is something I'd definitely like to do more of--having more of a plan for things to get used in multiple ways rather than, "oh, let's have chicken--The End"

 

A common trio that happens here is:

 

Roast whole chicken for dinner.

 

Some sort of chicken stock based soup for lunch the  next day. (Mostly because I don’t yet have freezer space for keep stock so I tend to use it right away.)

 

Some sort of dish (often Chicken a la King-like or a pie) for dinner that day as well. XD

 

 

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Druid and Adventurer

The Wye/Dean, UK

Current Storyline: Tales of Owlshire | 0 | 1

Previous  Storyline: The Entwife’s Heart | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

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