The Changing of the Guard.

I met with Mr. Tenant this past Saturday in order to pick up a key to the house and sadly, to hand him an eviction notice.  I’ve grown to really like him.  Unfortunately, that makes the whole getting-rid-of-the-tenant thing tough.  To my surprise and delight, he informed me that he and Mrs. Tenant have found a lovely place down in Hunterdon  County and are packing up to move!  I am very happy for them.  They are making a clean break and getting to start over in a new life.

I successfully dodged yet another big foreclosure bullet.    Plenty of people who buy foreclosures end up evicting their tenants in court and having to get the sheriff to physically remove them.  That’s really ugly. I cannot even imagine what having squatters on the property would entail.  I hear squatters are not uncommon in Florida foreclosure properties.

On Sunday evening the beekeepers met me by the barns to take a tour and help pick a spot for the new bee yard to be built (and drink beer and eat pizza).  We decided that the area between the back barn parking lot and the most western pasture would be an excellent spot – plenty of early morning sunlight, bright and open all day, drains well… and allows the bees access to fields and forage without them having to fly across any driveways or lawns.  I learned the hard way that bees have “flight highways” to and from their hives, and that people who stand in the way will get run into.  Nothing like a couple of bees crashing into your head to make a person move!

Mr. Tenant came out to say hello and had a beer with us.  He loves to talk about the farm to anyone who will listen.  And listen I do – I have learned lots of history about the farm from him.  The house was built in 1730 (not 1760 as we thought) and was originally a “salt box” style house.  The old barn was built in 1800, and the rafters are made with whole birch trees.  That’s pretty cool!  The original family built a newer, larger house to the south of the barns around the time of the American Revolution and still stands today – it is on a separate lot and owned by someone else.  Once that house was occupied, the “old” house (my house) became the home to the farm’s field hands and workers.

I cannot describe to you accurately the feeling I got just hanging out with friends, looking out as the sun set over my newly acquired fields.  Never have I experienced such completeness and satisfaction over a purchase.  I can’t want to see that view every day.

The picture below shows the south side of the barns.  As ugly and in need of paint as they are, the barns are surprisingly solid.  They are inhabited by barn swallows, who make their mud-and-wattle nests atop all the light fixtures and junction boxes.    That’s gonna take some work.  And possibly a barn door.

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About Silver Spring Farm

I am a beekeeper and organic gardener who is in the process of turning my renovated foreclosure property into a working farm. My etsy shop is located at www.leesbeesnj.etsy.com where you can buy honey, lip balm, creams, soaps and other cool stuff. Bee happy!
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