What is Orange Grove Road?
Hi there! I’m Liz Jaconelli. Growing up in Washington state, I was blessed to have parents who loved to garden and preserve abundantly. This girly completely took it for granted and thought it was a huge waste of time. It wasn’t until I had health challenges that I began to realize the value of homegrown food.
Roots of Survival & Preparedness
Due to poverty in his youth, my father along with his 7 siblings, survived by eating weeds, milking a cow, hunting and gardening. On occasion rattlesnake was on the menu! He worked hard to become a pharmacist and provided a good life for our little family.
By the time I was 15, our 1/4 acre home had reached a “Garden of Eden” semblance. I was bewildered when friends came over and gleefully harvest fruit. I saw it as an allergy inducing torturous chore!
It was right about then that we moved to a small town to live on 6 & 1/2 acres in the forest. My father created a beautiful pond filled with koi fish and lily pads. A majestic maple tree sat along the main trail which led to a swampland that rested just at the end of our property. I remember looking out my bedroom window one morning, to see a doe with her fawn appreciating the apples from the enormous tree in the front yard.
Some years later as my final college year was coming to an end, I found myself becoming increasingly fatigued with the smallest tasks. I had inexplicable pain in various places in my body and I became very forgetful. At the tender age of 25, I was branded with this weird condition called “fibromyalgia” or FMS. I feared that I would never have the endurance to have a family.
I tried in vain to improve my sorry state by just eating “healthy” and exercising a lot. Little did I realize I was making things much worse with my low-fat mentality and overtaxing my endocrine system with constant overexertion. Thankfully, one blessed day I met Brenda. She was a landlord of the building that I had just set up my fitness studio in. She turned out to be sort of my guardian angel. She was in the process of creating a support group for people with FMS! Her research led me to a symptom free life…and to a place of deep appreciation for the lifestyle that my father had exemplified!
Her website, fibromyalgiarecovery.com, explains a lot of what she found, which empowered us both become symptom free for over a decade now. Wait. More like 15 years! Sheesh.
Proof is in the puddin’
Before getting my health back, I would have never dreamed, I’d be transitioning a 1-acre mono crop orange grove into a permaculture oasis homestead in the Sonoran desert. I’m grateful to say I now have the gumption to be a wife and mother, homesteader, cook traditionally from scratch, and yes, I still enjoy fitness very much.
So Back to the Question at Hand. What is Orange Grove Road?
Well, let’s see… I guess if I have to sum it up, I’d say it’s place to share my journey from ill-health and disharmony with nature to a beautiful vibrant life that can give back now. Actually it’s really mostly about sharing the answers I’ve found to all the perplexing questions that come up with raising goats, and chickens and gardening, and food foresting. Or something like that 😉
My amazing dutiful father, helping us get our place in working order.
My complete FMS recovery details
Please enjoy and pass it along to anyone you know who could benefit or contribute!
Best Regards and welcome to Orange Grove Road.
Liz Jaconelli Graduated from Central Washington University with a degree in Family and Consumer Sciences. She opened a fitness studio where she worked as a personal trainer, helping clients achieve their fitness goals while developing a passion for holistic health. After having children, Liz became a full-time homemaker. She went on to complete all but a few classes toward a degree in Holistic Nutrition from Clayton College when they mysteriously shut down, leaving her unable to complete the degree. She now uses the knowledge gained, caring for her family and her little homestead, as holistically and sustainably as possible.