Normally any home purchase is news and certainly worthy of celebration but this one feels especially sweet for our family (yes, we just bought a home!!).
When we arrived in the Silicon Valley almost a year ago now, little did we know that we would find ourselves in the middle of the most challenging real estate market in the US at the moment. A combination of very low inventory and a swelling population fueled by the booming tech sector (think: Google, Apple, Facebook, LinkedIn to name a few), set the stage for shamefully inflated housing prices, unprecedented bidding wars and the common phenom of all cash offers (along with a host of other miscellaneous shenanigans). We experienced free market enterprise at it’s worst, or best, depending on how you look at it.
So when the stars recently aligned and our family of six — dog and cat inclus — picked up the keys to our home last week, there were tears of joy from this mamma. Relieved, grateful and yes, deliriously happy to have our own patch of green.
All of our belongings from Canada are still sitting on a truck and we are working out of the original suitcases we came with last August. But here’s the funny part about that. You discover very quickly just how little you need to survive and to survive well. I’m not going to pretend that I don’t think about my stuff from time to time. I do. But frankly, a lot less than I would have ever imagined. The two things I miss the most? Our family photos and my books… sure, it will be nice to have my kitchen appliances back and an extra pair of shoes but all in all, if there’s anything this year has taught me is that we carry way more than we need. I’m overwhelmed at the prospect of fitting it all back into our lives. (And I’m not sure I want to).
Meanwhile, the aspect that I’m probably most excited about relating to our new home is the edible landscape. This subarctic gal is still shaking her head in disbelief at the beauty and utter wonder.
Care to see what’s growing in our backyard?
Let’s start here. You might recall this image from last week’s post…
A beautiful apricot tree!
My husband is a huge fan of apricots ~ he and the boys used to play a game of ‘catch the flying apricot with your mouth’ at breakfast time when the boys were young. This particular tree felt like it was meant for them.
Keeping our apricot tree company are two lemon trees…
One of them (pictured above) is doing quite well, with large, luscious lemons (we’ve taste tested them of course). The other lemon tree is rapidly producing miniatures — they’re very cute but we suspect the tree may need a little TLC and some pruning to focus it’s energy back to its natural growth pattern. How fun to think that we might have an impact on the growth of a lemon tree ♡.
Further along the path, there is a mandarin tree (we have yet to determine the variety). Mandarins typically bloom in the winter but when I visited the property to shoot some photos, wouldn’t you know it, there was one fruit on the tree; just waiting to pose. Handsome devil!
Here’s another shot of one that I rubbed off with my thumb — looking more familiar.
And what about this fellow. Any guesses?
We had no idea either. It’s a pineapple guava tree (!!?) — I keep calling it a grapefruit guava (I confuse pineapple and grapefruit linguistically though not conceptually. I do however confuse dinosaurs and dragons conceptually, which is more concerning).
The former owner tells us that for every one delicious pineapple guava fruit, there are twenty or so horribly sour, inedible ones. So it’s a bit of a game to see who can get the good guava! We can hardly wait to discover this fruit and so much more… every time we visit, we seem to uncover something new. We have never been so excited and motivated to learn!
We have a month or so of renovations ahead of us (currently underway) with a projected move-in date of late-July/early-August. The summer posting schedule will not doubt be hit-and-miss but, it is summer after all, so let’s all enjoy it!
I hope to be back to regular posting sometime in September.
On to today’s recipe…
So simple and full of deliciousness! The plum sauce need not be reserved for dessert — though it’s mighty delicious enjoyed this way and seemed suitably festive. The first time I made this sauce in fact, my husband and I ate it with seared scallops (delish!). It also pairs beautifully with yogurt and mixed in with morning oatmeal or smoothies.
I hope you enjoyed the mini-tour of our backyard and stay tuned… if I’m feeling brave, I may post some interior reno photos. We’ll see how it goes!
Wish us luck ;-).