Saturday, June 6, 2009

Living at the Clearwater Commons

Our family moved to the Clearwater Commons on New Years Eve, 2007 and have now been living here at the Commons for 18 months. We remodeled the old farmhouse on the property and so are the first to move here. After living in Seattle for the past 20 years and in beautiful urban neighborhoods, I’m happy to report that I love living here.

Perhaps what I love the best is coming back from a run on the trail to North Creek Park and quickly looking up books for new birds or animals that have been discovered.

With all of the snow we had this winter (we get more than Seattle) we had our own “groomed” cross country ski track – complete with a jump or two.

It’s not often that you can ski right next to a creek surrounded by beautiful frozen snow.

I thought I would miss the easy access to Puget Sound Consumer Co-op and its great selection of organic foods – but I’ve found that Central Market in Mill Creek – 5 minutes away has almost an equally good selection of organic foods and generally at better prices.And our Commons chickens give us more eggs than we can eat!

I thought I would miss all of the urban amenities of music, plays, and great restaurants. (Ok, I do miss the restaurants in Seattle) But, frankly the trip into Seattle is only 20-25 minutes and actually is more accessible than the cross town commutes we had in Lake City. And, the Mill Creek Town Center is a pretty cool place with 23 restaurants, U.W. Bookstore, and many shops people pine for. You can check it out at:

But I love that we can walk on a path all the way to Mill Creek and then up the North Creek trail that connects to the Interurban Trail which goes all the way to Everett and south to Seattle which connects to….the Burke Gilman, etc. You get the picture. Walking and biking are pretty great.

Alright, so what don’t I like. Well, this is the season that Reed Canary Grass LOVES. And it is a noxious weed that we are trying to contain in our stream restoration effort with Snohomish County. It grows so fast – seems like over an inch per day. And it is very difficult to keep mowed for our paths – especially when you use a scythe like I do.

Other annoying things include cleaning up for the teens that hang at the back of the property and managing our overflowing artisian well that provides us with terrible water that requires 5 levels of filtration. Can’t wait for the public water to get here!

Mostly, I look forward to the community. We regularly have kids up here from The Clearwater School and you can see the vision: Sitting by the campfire at the creek, using the sweat lodge, sports on our grass field, playing music, capture the flag, and other spontaneous games, or just relaxing and not having to go ANYWHERE else, because it is already here.

Tom with Son Nici runnin' the Commons!