Saturday, August 8, 2015

Dreams And "Gonna's"



There comes a time in a persons life when they have to step back and look at reality.  I have found that my reality is warped. LOL!  I am a dreamer and a "gonna-er". I dream big dreams and I always tell myself, and other people, things that I'm "gonna do".  I looked back on some of my blog posts and read about all the things I'm "gonna" do.  Whether it's "gonna" post pictures of something, or start teaching homesteading classes here on the farm.  I have written about many different things that I'm "gonna" do.

By now, if you have followed this blog for any amount of time, you know I don't always do what I say I'm "gonna" do.  I didn't actually realize how many times I do this!!!!  It's not that I tell you something that I'm going to do and sit back and laugh and say to myself," No way am I going to do that."  No!  I honestly think I'm "gonna" do it! I either get involved in something else and figure you have all forgot about what I was "gonna" do, I forget, or I simply get overwhelmed with all the things that I say I'm "gonna" do, and give up all together.

What adds to my "gonna do"s, is my ability to dream big.  I mean BIG.  My mind is constantly thinking of the next big thing.  The problem with that is I usually haven't finished the thing I was "gonna" do before. I'm in a constant state of dreaming and "gonna doing".  Because of this, there are so many projects of mine that do not get done.  Chicken coop built, cleaning the house, butchering the rabbits on time, paint that painting, spin that wool, write that article

and the list goes on and on.  Finally, this past week, I told myself that enough is enough.  My brain is overloaded.  It's time to erase, start over, and down size my dreams and "gonna" list.

First on this list is the garden.  One year I was "gonna do" container gardening. Then I realized that if I had containers, Jack (our St. Bernard) will pee on every container that we have. He does this to any flower pot I have on the ground. lol.  We also have decent garden soil so why would I want to waste that.  Just about every Spring, we think we're going to have this huge garden and we are "gonna" have the whole pantry full of canned goods.  It starts out that way, the garden looks soooo nice when it's freshly tilled and the small plants are sticking up out of the ground.  Then the heat hits, or like this year, the rains hits.  Hubby, nor I, can (or wants to) get out into the garden and keep up with the, at that time, small weeds.  The weeds then take over the garden and we are overwhelmed once again by the enormous job it would be to go weed the "jungle."

This past week, we both had a good, honest talk about our garden.  We need to stop listening to people, that are trying to help, and start thinking about what we can REALLY do with the time we have to put into it.  So BOTH of us have decided to downsize our garden.  We don't really need 125 tomato plants.  With that many we get overwhelmed real easy.  We don't take care of them and they don't produce anything or worse,they rot or go to waste.  With a smaller amount of tomatoes (like 6-10 plants) we will have the "want to" to actually do something with them.  There won't be so many to overwhelm us.  By doing this, we will probably get a better yield of tomatoes anyway.  We are doing this with the whole garden.  Next year we aren't going to feel like there is just too much to do with it. I really think we will enjoy it so much better.

Now that Hubby and I had this talk, we are looking at things differently for our whole farm.  We need to eat this elephant one small bite at a time instead of all at once.  Believe it or not, a big farm isn't all it's cracked up to be.  Especially when you don't have anyone to help take care of it with you. I have actually envied people that have just a few acres. To keep us sane, instead of thinking big, we are thinking small.  Just doing one small project at a time.  Both of us will be happier and more willing to get projects done.  Instead of redoing the whole 55 acres of fence line, do a small amount at a time.  Sooner or later, all of the fence will be fixed and hopefully we won't have to mess with it for a while.

I think this talk has helped us tremendously. I didn't realize how stressed we were thinking of all the stuff we were "gonna" do.  As we do the small things, we will gradually add more.  It's always easier to start small and get bigger. I'm sure there are some of you out there in Blog Land that could take over and have a nice BIG producing farm, but for us, starting over and going small (at first) will be a blessing.

So until next time,

Small Farm Girl, ex-gonna-er

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

The Promised Calf Pictures


I've been promising calf pictures now for the last two weeks.  The little red one on the right is out of the skinny cow.  This little girl has made it this long so I went and gave her a name.  Her name is Penny.  She is the exact color of a penny. You can't tell it in this picture because 1) It was getting dark when I took this picture, and 2) I took it with my cell phone.  I have other pictures of the little black calf.  Which, by the way, is also a heifer. ( A young cow.) The bigger one in the middle is a bull.  He will probably be in the freezer come next spring.




Here is a better picture of our newest little girl.  She is a nice chocolate brown.  We haven't named her yet.  I usually wait for the names to hit me.   This momma here, hasn't had very many babies.  She will be going to the sale barn soon. If you can't pull your own weight around here, ya gotta go.  Well, we have given her YEARS now and this is her first calf.  I believe she is almost 7 or 8 years old.  She's outta here!  Plus this is the main wild cow.  The other cows have tamed down a bit over the last year.  Not this one.  She's almost to the point of hurting someone and we won't put up with that.

Around the farm we have just about given up on the garden.  I will be getting a little bit here and there, but nothing to do much of anything with.  A VERY bad year for it.  We have decided that we are going to scale down our garden for next year.  When spring comes around we always go over board with the size of the garden.  We always think bigger is better. I'm not giving up on gardening.  I'm just making a garden the size of which I KNOW I can take care of. If the garden was all that we had to do, that would be fine.  But, we have just been overwhelmed with the weather and the farm this year.  We are really doing a lot more than we usually do.  We also want to do things right and not with a "That will do." attitude.  With my back and knees and Hubby working 10 hrs shifts, it's hard to run a 55 acre farm.  We are doing it slowly, but we are getting there. 

Hubby and Country Girl have been cutting hay this last week.  We have 3 more fields to cut yet.  We're hoping for some good rains to help the fields grow some more for a later cutting.  We shall see if that'll happen.  Hay's going to be hard to find around these parts.  Most farmers didn't get to get in the fields early spring because of the rain.  Therefore, they didn't get to cut their fields as many times as usual.  Gonna be an interesting winter.

So until next time,

Small Farm Girl, farmer. 

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Fed UP.

Is it just me or are the days REALLY flying by?  I feel like I just can't get anything done.  For one, we can't get into the garden.  I've got zucchini in there the size of my leg.  I guess I'll be making a lot of zucchini bread.  That's ok, I like to freeze it and give it as gifts. The tomatoes are getting the blight.  The bottom leaves are brown and yucky.  Of course, they have had so much rain on them, I would be more surprised if they DIDN'T have it. I'm hoping to get some tomatoes out of it.  I would really like to get some tomato juice canned.  I HATE buying tomato juice from the grocery store.  It just doesn't taste the same.  Actually, most things that you buy at the store doesn't taste the same as what it does from the garden. I have no idea how anything else is doing in the garden.  I can't see from the outside of the garden fence.  Although I did notice that there were deer tracks in there.  AAAAAAUUUUUGGGHHHHH.

I don't know if I have told you or not, but I had cancelled all of my future physical therapy appointments.  I was maxing out on flexibility and strength.  I guess that's what ya get for living on a farm.  But I wasn't seeing any differences, and I wasn't going to keep spending $35 twice a week. (They were wanting me to come 3 times a week.  Uh, no.)

I did finally get in with my back doctor.  He came in, (on time!) and said before I can do anything for you, we need to get an MRI done on your back.  Thank you for your co-pay, and left.  Well, it didn't happen EXACTLY like that, but it might as well have.  Why didn't they inform me that I needed an MRI before I came and seen him?  Anyway, he gave me a number to call the next day to set up my MRI.  Well, I called it 2 days later and the lady setting up the appointment said the doctor hadn't sent down a request for the MRI.  Seriously???  Can't people just do their job?  I say this because my primary doctor that I have to see twice a year for my blood pressure meds messes the meds up EVERY SINGLE TIME.  I have to go back and tell him that he has given me the wrong amount of pills.  One time he even sent my meds to the wrong pharmacy!!!  I would change doctors, but he actually acts like he listens to what's wrong with you.  I've had other doctors just blow off symptoms and they ended up being something.  He also listens when I tell him what's wrong with ME.  Most doctors think they know more about their patience bodies than they do.  Anyway, I'm fed up with doctors in general.

Soooooooo,  I've got a plan.  (You saw this coming didn't you?)  My plan is to be off my meds by the next fouth of July.  I'll lose the weight to where I don't need blood pressure pills and I'm going to really look into finding something natural that I can grow that will help with the inflammation in my knees and back.  With the way the medical field is getting, I'm wanting to stay away from it as much as I can.

Well, this has been long enough. Especially since my computer deleted this post twice.

So until next time,

Small Farm Girl, Fed up with the medical field.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Cows and Rain

I'm sitting here at my table listening to the rain hit the tin roof.  Since we don't have any insulation on the ceiling, you can hear it really well!  Nothing better. It's about 65 degrees outside and dark because of the rain.  I LOVE IT!!!!  This kind of weather say, "Sit down and read a book!" lol

Yes, I know the garden needs weeded and I can't get out there without sinking half way up to my knees. ( I know this because I just HAD to get that zucchini from the garden yesterday.) I also know that the tomatoes need staked.  They are laying down on the ground and the mud is not good for them.  Yes, I know that the hay needs to be cut.  We haven't been able to cut any this year because of not having any recent dry days.  But, I REALLY love these cool rainy day!  The animals do too!

We had a cow have a little heifer 4 days ago.  I'm hoping they will be okay.  Our cow has been losing weight and she has gotten really skinny, then she pops out the cutest little copper colored heifer that we have seen around here in a while.  I am watching them closely because I'm not sure if mommy has enough milk.  She doesn't look like she has much of a sack and the calf is always trying to get something to eat.  I'm hoping that the cow's milk will come in better soon.  This cow has had and raised other calves before.  Nice calves.  She is just so skinny now.

She is one of the 3 wild ones we have.  Well, I guess out of all the 3 she is the least wild one.  Her last heifer isn't as wild and has gotten to where she will come up to the fence to see if I have anything for her.  We don't feed our cattle grain on a daily bases, but we do give them a mouthful every once in a while to get them use to us.  It didn't work on the other 2 cows, but the momma of the new baby has been coming up when I do put some feed out for them.  In fact, I have been able to touch her one time.  That's a big accomplishment considering how wild she was before.

Anyways,  It was 2 days since I had seen Momma and baby so I went looking for them this morning.  For some reason, I just knew that they were dead.  But as luck would have it, they're not.  They were both laying down in the back of the field.  Momma still looks all skinny and horrible, but baby is looking better.  Hopefully Momma will be able to raise this little girl.  I left them a bit of grain hoping that it will help Momma with some of her milk production. If we had a place to actually hold her, I would run Momma up in there and check her over.  Or if we had a small corral that we could contain them in, that would help too.  I guess we are just going to have to make it a priority to get those things done here on the farm.

I was going to get a picture of those two but I wanted to see if they were going to make it first before I told you all about them.  Then I got to thinking, this is farming!  Sometimes animals make it and sometimes they don't.  I just want to tell the truth here.  I'm not going to name the heifer just yet though.  I'm not going to go that far. lol

So until next time,

Small Farm Girl, weather lover.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Published! And Farm Goings On

There is soooo much stuff going on right now here around the farm.   But first, I wanted to show you THIS!!!



That's ME!  I'm published in Molly Green Magazine!!!!!  I'm sooooo excited!!!!  As soon as I figure things out, I'll put a link on here to where you can get a subscription.  I got my first copy in the mail just last week.  I can honestly say that this magazine is REALLY GOOD!  I'm not just saying that because I'm writing in it.  It is REALLY GOOD!.  Oh, I already said that. lol

Well, we finally got some rain around here.  It's funny.  The weathermen just can't predict the weather in these parts.  They say it's because of the mountains and how the weather reacts to them.  I don't know.  All I know is that I'm just about done listening to them.  When they say we have a slim chance of rain, we ended up with 3 inches.  When they said we were going to get around 5 inches because of tropical storm Bill, we only got 1/2 inch.  Very unpredictable.  I've come to the conclusion to just step outside and see what the weather looks like.  If it's wet, it's probably raining. 
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I started physical therapy last week.  I've gone 3 times so far.  I think it's a waste of money.  With insurance, my co-pay is $35 for each visit.  I don't feel any different.  In fact, one of the therapist said I was one of the most limber patience that they've ever had.  She didn't really see why I need to come.  So I'm going to talk to them and tell them I'm going to stop going.  It's just too expensive for what it's NOT doing for me. Maybe once I actually go to my back doctor, we will find out if I really need it.  I'm going to wait and see.  But in the mean time, I'm gonna save me some money and cancel the rest of the appointments
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On to farm news. Coyotes have been coming around close to the house and hay barn.  I'm not sure what they're trying to get.  Chickens, cats, dogs, rabbits?  Hard to tell.  I just hope they keep their killin's to the wild rabbits and leave our livestock alone.  The coyotes are really getting thick around here.  It's not unusual to see them in broad daylight now.  I'm kind of leery about letting the pups out to play.  Although, I know Jack will be around them.  He's their protector.  I'm still apprehensive about letting them out for long periods of time.  But, you try and keep two growing Aussies cooped up inside the house.  Um, ya,

The garden is doing very well with all of the rain.  I've been going out in the mornings and weeding for a little while.  That way I don't have to go out for a long period of time and stay out in that heat.  It's like a sauna around here.  Everyone says, "Oh ya, we have humidity here too."  They just don't understand the concept of our humidity.  It really is like a rain forest with all of our trees and water ways.  The hills block a lot of the breezes too.  I promise, the humidity is different in the hills.  I'm not saying it's worse, just different.
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Hay season should have already started here on the farm.  The rain has held it off for some time.  That's one thing you don't want though, and that's to rain on your hay after it's cut.  It gets all moldy and it loses some of it's nutrition.  When Hubby goes out and does the cutting, I'll do a small post on how it's all done.  I'm sure there are a few of you out there that has never seen it done.  It's kind of interesting.  At least it was to me when I first saw it being baled.

Well, I've jabbered on enough for now.

So until next time,

Small Farm Girl, published.  

Monday, June 8, 2015

Budgets

I hate to post this because I know a lot of you out there are flooded but, WE NEED RAIN!!!  We got a whole 1/2 of rain for the month of May and June has produced nothing for us so far.  We can watch the radar of the storms coming our way.  As they get right up to us, they disappear giving us nothing, nada, zipo.  We actually can SEE the rain coming from the clouds on the horizon.  But nope, us nothing.  Our garden is just about to give our on us.  The plants are so small and puny.  I'm hoping they will come out of it IF we get some rain.But finally, we have a good chance of getting rain today.  In fact they are calling for sever thunderstorms to come through here tonight.  Here's to hoping they actually rain on the farm.

Now on to financial news.  I feel like I can tell things on here not because I'm a wiz at doing things, but I think that maybe, some how, my mess ups can help other people too. Hubby and I were talking about some of our wish lists.  You know, the, "If I win the lottery" talk.  Well, we got to wondering how many of the people, that my husband works with, can afford to buy new trucks and motorcycles and still get new houses and things like that. They made the same amount of money as he does so why were we living paycheck to paycheck?  Did their wives work and make thousands of dollars a week?  What was the deal?

Well, we got to looking at our budget, or should I say lack of one, and we were noticing that over half of our money was going to fuel and eating out.  WHAT???? You mean to tell me that it was adding up to that?  WOW!!!!  That really put things into perspective.  Even though we live about 30 minutes from any large(er) town, it was really taking it's toll on our money when we, on a whim, decide to go and, let's say, get an ice cream.  Those things really add up!  (They add up on your waist line too, but that's a whole other issue. lol)

So what are we going to do about it?  Well, for one, we are not going to eat out.  We realize that we like my cooking better than most restaurants anyway. Plus, it's a lot more healthy for us too. And since we are stopping our "let's go for a drive" mentality, we don't have to worry about needing something to eat while we are out.    I realize that I will have to make sure that I plan out our meals so that I know when to get something out of the freezer to thaw.  That way it won't take very long to make meals.  I really think this will work. We need to stop using "eating out" as our "lets do something" idea.  I would rather go fishing anyway. lol

So until next time,

Small Farm Girl, homebody.

P.s.  It started raining while I was writing this post.  YAY!!!!!

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Bye,Bye Bunnies......Hopefully.

Well, I put the rabbits up for sale on a Facebook livestock page.  Hopefully I'll be able to sell them soon.  I like these little buggers, but I know they aren't fitting into our farm plans.  Why feed something that's not going to contribute to the farm.  If that means by working, making money, or by being food.  So far, they haven't done much of any of those. No one but me likes to eat the rabbits.  I don't know why, they taste like chicken. lol  So it's gonna be bye,bye, bunnies.



Although I'm going to miss seeing them come to the front of the cage to be fed, I won't miss breaking the ice out of their bowls in the winter. lol



So until next time,

Small Farm Girl, moving forward.