July 8, 2011

The Lay of the Land: Looking Back

When I first saw this property in the summer of 1989, it was the land that I fell in love with; it took longer for me to recognize the treasure that is the house. Each step I took around the lawns and fields showed a new view, a different perspective, a changing sense of beauty. There is a small rise behind and to the west of the house, so the view back towards it has a bit of drama. In this final post of the series "Lay of the Land", I've walked past the house towards the west and faced back east to photograph, first the back yard...

then swinging to the south to take in the shed on the western end of the house...

and a little further to see the pond in the distance.

I then walked down the little hill (I'd been standing to the west and north of the telephone pole you can see on the upper left) and positioned myself to the south and west of the vegetable garden.

And now I turn the camera toward the east to take in the house, and in the foreground the raspberry patch. I'm going to have a bumper crop of raspberries this year since they love the rain and we've had a lot of it.

Here is my house and barn, with the hill called Blue Mountain between them; the land in front of the house slopes to the pond, which you can't see in this photo. There is a good deal of rock ledge up here, and the granite pokes up in places: under the house, in the lawn, in a large outcrop close to where I stood to take the first photos. I can be grateful for the geography of this area of Vermont because it's given me a varied and lovely place to call home.

Previous blog posts in the series:
"The Backyard Garden"
"The Approach"
"Facing East"
"Looking West"


  1. Your part of the world is heavenly especially with raspberries on it.

  2. I have to agree with Lisa! Your house and property have always resonated with me, but this post seems to put it all in context — or anchor it in the landscape. First and last images suggest an almost perfect spot to have settled.

  3. Thank you both for the comments; I do feel lucky to live in this gorgeous spot. There's something about looking at the land from this vantage point, and even further back, that gives the sweep and roll of it. It's the only thing I enjoy about mowing my back field once a year: I get to watch the landscape for an hour as I drive to and fro.

  4. I can see why you fell in love and are still in love. The land holds the house and barn, pond and gardens so beautifully and with Blue Mountain in view, echoing the shape of your land, it really is magnificent. Thanks Altoon, for walking us about.

  5. Great photos.
    Do you mow all that grass yourself? (As a boy I had the unenviable job of mowing lots and lots of land).

  6. You are welcome, Liz, I enjoyed giving a tour.
    Philip, yes I mow it all myself. I have a garden tractor aka riding mower, so it's not really that much work.

  7. Charlotte RollmanJuly 9, 2011 at 9:52 AM

    Sometimes people feel possessive of land and places but they are made more valuable when shared in paintings and grace. thanks

  8. Do you have any "before" pictures?

  9. Charlotte, I always love sharing my home with friends.
    Deborah, I might have some old photos, but they'd be snapshots on film, hard to dig up and then hard to share since I don't have a scanner.

  10. Altoon, I love the photos of your property and how you write about the land. There are so many similarities between your place and Iowa. It is calming to look at the rolling hills and the rustic quality of your buildings. And....I live surrounded by 11 oak trees so I am JEALOUS of the upcoming raspberry crop!

  11. Mary, I was in Iowa many years ago, in the northwestern part of the state and it was very beautiful with its rolling hills. Here the hills get a bit larger and there's more wild land, but I can see why you would find a similarity.
    I Love my raspberries!