Saturday, October 19, 2013

A Good Book!

I recently bought "One-Woman Farm: My Life Shared with Sheep, Pigs, Chickens, Goats, and a Fine Fiddle" by Jenna Woginrich of Cold Antler Farm

It was very good from start to finish. I read it straight though in one evening but after my friend finishes it I will read it again more slowly. The artwork that began with the inside papers and continued on every page through out the book was wonderful. The text came partly from her blog but I think it was presented with a little more polish and deeper thought.

I may not agree with everything she thinks, or does, but that is okay. Her words cause me to examine my own goals for my farm and life. I have 25 years on this young woman and those years cause me to be more conscious of the what ifs that can occur and must be dealt with nearly every day.

There are almost 10 years left before I will retire. Until that time I am working to have the bones of my tiny farm in place so I will spend my retirement enjoying and maintaining what I have worked hard to set in place. Being responsible for much of my food is an important goal for me. Getting major repairs made to my home is a necessary goal that can't wait very much longer. With the extra I am paying on my mortgage my house should be paid for in two years. I am praying my 14 year old car will hold on for 3 more years before it completely gives up the ghost. Lately every trip is a spiritual experience. One of those "Please Lord just one more trip" if you know what I mean.

Library is about to close so I need to get a wiggle on. Praying for a productive week for all!

~ Peace ~

Thursday, October 17, 2013

A Satisfied Customer ..... Really!

Sweet babe wearing my hat.

This little Miss Sober-sides is wearing a hat made in one of my most favorite colorways. I wish I could remember where I bought the yarn. I think it must Joann Fabrics.

Angela said the babe's mama remarked about how solemn she had been all morning. That she was thinking "deep thoughts". :)

Oops! I have told people all week that this Saturday, October 19th, is our last Market. The last Market is actually October 26th. So yay for us because the 19th is looking as though we may be rained out.

Angela and I are working hard to build up our inventory for the last days of Market and the Holiday show November 9th at the Orleans Elementary School. We keep telling our hands "Don't fail us now!" So of course I have had that old Hoyt Axton song "Boney Fingers" in my head for a couple of weeks. "Work your fingers to the bone ...... what do you get? Boney Fingers"

You can also items made by The Sisters at a new boutique in Bedford, IN called Franki & Pips . It is an eclectic shop of new and vintage items. Nothing else like it in Bedford! They also have a Facebook page where you can get updates of what coming soon or is in stock. They rarely have many of the same thing so your  purchases will be very unique.

Best call it a night and go put the farm to bed!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Another Step Forward

Going into today's mail. [smile]

Monday, July 29, 2013

It's an Eggs-cellent Day!

Red Star Egg

I am hanging out at Angela's house sick. Low grade fever, wicked sore throat that is trying to go into my ears, body aches and a headache too. I'm on the computer so I will stay awake until I can go to the pharmacy to pick up my prescriptions. After all of that misery you may be wondering why I think it is such a good day.

This is a day that the Lord has made I will rejoice and be glad in it!

Yep some days you just need to get up and believe. Otherwise you will end up wallowing in your misery.

Oh the photo of the egg? It is one I found in the nest box this morning. It is bigger than an early pullet egg but not the jumbo size they will eventually become. Another reason to be happy and do a lil rejoicing ... the eggs are coming on so Yay!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Good Grief!

I am such a slacker in so many ways ... blogging has now been added to the list. sigh

I was discouraged after losing my chickens in the "Massacre" but went ahead and purchased 14 chicks from the Tractor Supply and Orschlen's Farm Store in March. I went with a mixed flock because I like the different colors of both feathers and eggs. 

About six weeks ago two of the "New Girls" began crowing. Yes this makes four roosters I have had to deal with in my short time of having a flock. Strangely it wasn't trying to mate with anyone who would stand still long enough that caused the mass hatred but rather none of the girls liked them because they were so crazy mean! They would grab a passing bird by the wing and sling them like a Frisbee. Other times they would grab whoever was going by and bite down on the back of the girl's neck. There was so much shouting and screaming (From the girls and me!) early on that I was already trying to give them away. After the crowing began they definitely had to go. I finally convinced a co-worker to take them home with him. They had been living on organic feed, fresh fruits and veggies since they come to my farm so I told him they should be good eating. Yes, I told John I did not care if he sent them to Freezer Camp I was that over them.

A few of the pullets have begun laying. I love finding those little eggs in the nest box. So far it looks as though a Buff Orpington and two of the Red Stars are leading the way. When I begin getting a dozen a day my customers will be happy. I keep giving reports to interested parties. I need to get a new license from the Health Dept. and also apply for my State egg license. Lots of folks skip the licensing but I want to be on the up and up.

My sister Angela and I now have a Facebook page. Look for "The Sisters" from Bedford, IN. If we can get our sister Debbie to get her craft on maybe the site will carry goods from the three of us. Right now Deb is recovering from a right shoulder break/Rotor Cuff surgery so it will be months before she can be productive but I believe in planting the seed. [wink] She makes great bags with multiple pockets. I have worn most of mine out and would appreciate some replacements. :)

I placed some of my Ruffle Scarves on our page today. The one I call Strawberry Parfait is perfect for little girls who like a bit of bling. I especially like the scarf in two shades of Green with Champagne. It's soft subtle colors are very pretty.

The rain that kept us from being at Market has stopped so I think I will go home and groom bunnies.

Hope you weekend is restful and you will recharged for next week.

Friday, March 29, 2013

He Is Risen!

The Glorious Easter Exchange
Lord, the condemnation was yours, that the justification might be mine.
The agony was yours, that the victory might be mine.
The pain was yours, and the ease mine.
The stripes were yours, and the healing balm issuing from them mine.
The vinegar and gall were yours, that the honey and sweet might be mine.
The curse was yours, that the blessing might be mine.
The crown of thorns was yours, that the crown of glory might be mine.
The death was yours, the life purchased by it mine.
You paid the price, that I might enjoy the inheritance.

 John Flavel’s (1671)

Wishing everyone Easter blessings!!

P.S. Have to make my Easter post a little early as I do not think I will have internet access until Tuesday.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Gathering My Chick Supplies!

This is either my Tansy or Marguerite taken shortly after I brought them home.

This is a then two year old  Jaidy's first look at the new babies. Love her expression!
I'm getting excited! New chicks should be in my brooder box next weekend. I picked up a second brooder lamp a few days ago. My original lamp is in the Hen House chasing the the ice from from the girls water bowl. After I clean out the Hen House this weekend I am putting the plastic waterer back in place. Sage is the messiest hen I have ever endured! So the plastic waterer will be hung from the rafters under the lamp and there will be clean water for the two girls. I also purchased another chick waterer and chick feeder along with a bale of Aspen bedding. Monday I will make a quick before work run to Bloomington to pick up 50 pounds of organic chick feed. I do not use medicated feed ... ever. If the chicks are healthy and are receiving fresh, clean water and food. If they are in a clean, well kept brooder box I see no need to feed medicated feed ... just my two cents.

Still waiting to see what chicken breeds the local farm stores will be offering this year. I know I will definitely be buying more Red Stars.They lay the best jumbo brown eggs I have ever eaten. I hope to find Black Stars too. Barred Rocks are a possibility and Americanas (Easter Eggers) are on the short list. My friend Sara has Australorps and I have heard good things about them being a friendly, gentle bird. I think Miss Jaidy would like them. She enjoys petting the girls and my Tansy was a favorite so Orpingtons are on the long list.

It is going to be hard to keep my count down to a dozen new girls. I first thought I would just add ten but the lists keep growing so the numbers also keep growing!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Call me Fickle.

Love those fuzzy faces!

Could you say no to one of these sweet faces?
I have been waffling back and forth over goat breeds that would work best for my small homestead. I love the funky look of the La Manchas. They also have many attributes that would work nicely for this new goat herder and maybe one day I will be able to add one to my herd but just not right now.

With all that considered I think I am going to go with the Nigerian Dwarf goats. They are of small stature, have higher butterfat, seem to be more readily available in my area and are just darn cute. I love the goats with blue eyes and moonspots. I want a colorful mini-herd of two or three. Being a dwarf breed I can easily handle them plus the enclosure I'm planning will be plenty roomy.

I stopped at the Tractor Supply on my lunch hour to ask the manager if he had any word when "Chick Days" would commence. I learned they will be getting chicks at the end of the month. My expectations are running high to find different breeds to add to my dwindling flock. I know I definitely want more Red Stars for their jumbo brown eggs my family loves. Rhode Island Reds are on the list too. I hope I will be able to find Black Stars and a few Cochins too for a colorful flock.

My flock of hens now stands at two. Yarrow and Sage are the only residents of the new hen house Daddy and I worked so hard to build. My newish girl Parsley began crowing early last week. Parsley had been living on my little farm for months so it with total shock I heard crowing coming from the hen house. I called the friend I bought the newest girls from and she couldn't believe it either. So now the rooster, formerly known as Parsley, has been returned from whence he came. No roosters are allowed in town.

Better head home. The temperature is in the low 60s and I have a few outdoor chores to take care of before we get rain. :)

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Looking Back & Pushing Onward

2012 was a roller coaster of a year. Some steps were made forward and a few were  made backward. 

I added three Blueberry bushes because the bushes I planted last year did not come back last Spring. Although we had a mild Winter the Grape vines didn't come back either . Daddy and I  made a few raised beds and two of them are planted in Blackberry and Blueberry bushes. 

My little Fig trees came up but didn't do a whole lot with the drought hitting us so hard. I did soak them, and the Peach tree, a few times a week during the driest part of Summer. The Peach tree had a wonderful crop of fruit. The one peach I was able to eat, before they were stolen off the tree, was a perfect peach ... sweet and so juicy. 

Last Fall I added three rhubarb plants and two Currant bushes. I am eager to see how they fare this Spring. I want to make Rhubarb crumbles and Currant jelly, after the bushes mature, maybe Currant wine too.

Late last Fall I added two Dominique pullets and two Welsummer pullets. Unfortunately a raccoon recently raided my hen house and killed my original flock ( Tansy, Rosemary, Frick and Cicely) plus both Dominiques and one of the Welsummers. Losing my original girls was a very bitter pill to swallow. I raised them from chicks and they were like feathery cats. Whatever I was doing they were right there to "help" me. If while I was walking and stopped too quick it was common for Frick to run into me. [sigh]

As soon as the Tractor Supply Co., and Orscheln's, begin their Chick Days I will begin a new flock. I think in addition to the Red Stars I will try some new breeds. We'll just have to see what choices they will be offering.

Looking ahead to a new year of homesteading I've been researching dairy goats. The LaManchas have really caught my attention. LaMancha goats are sturdy animals with very small ears. They originated in the United States and were developed for their delicious flavored milk and sweet disposition. They are suppose to be a quiet breed which is a huge plus since I'm an Urban Homesteader. No one has ever complained about the chickens and I don't want goats to put my neighbors over the edge. [smile]

The new season will also include more raised beds, a few finishing touches on the hen house, more Herbs, Grape vines and Fruit trees.

The greenhouse will be getting a workout this year. I learned quite a bit last season so I'm expecting more plants for my family's use and to sell at Market.

I will leave you with this quote I found buried in my email ... I think it is a good one.

The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness, or skill. It will make or break a company…a church…a home. The remarkable thing is, you have a choice everyday regarding the attitude you will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past. We cannot change the fact that people will act a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude.

I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you. You are in charge of your attitudes.

-Chuck Swindoll