Deer Watching

We wandered off to a local rodeo this past Saturday.
Took some pictures, enjoyed the mini donuts (I need a mini donut machine!), bought tickets to the foal raffle (we didn’t win 😦 ) and then, on the drive home, we saw these young ladies:

“Oh. Hello.
Did you want to pass?”

We were in no hurry, so Hubby just stopped the truck, while I and friend Shay pulled out our cameras.
And while it’s not the best quality image (it’s taken through the dirty windshield) I love this shot. ❤

Then Hubby caught movement to his left…

Hiding in the trees of the cow pasture, watching to see what we were going to do.

Using What You Have

I’m a firm believer in using what you have.
Whether it’s re-purposing something, or fixing it, I believe that throwing money at things is not always the best plan.
In fact, in Farm life, throwing money at things is the fastest way to become a broke FarmHer.

Take my pig and chicken yards…

All re-purposed materials, except for the main henny coop and fence posts.
The posts we bought the first year here, when the plan was fence the entire 80 acres.
We haven’t got that far yet, and so we used some of the posts for the food animal yards.

Chicken yard is a mixture of found-at-the-dump stucco wire (I found a 3/4 roll in the metal pile and fished it out right quick!) and chain link fencing that was from my Mom’s place in the city.

Pig yard is primarily pallets, which are, thankfully, free.

Pig house, and meat chicken house are built from skids and scrap wood that Hubby was getting free from work.
So, aside from hauling it home, the only cost into the shelters that have housed food animals for 2 years is maybe $20 in screws.
Pretty darn good, if you ask me.

This year’s pigs have an extra added bonus to their fence…
Bacon Makers…

For the past couple of years, we’ve been given medium square straw bales by a friend…they’re dirty bales he can’t use, and would have to burn, but, so long as we haul them away, we can have them.
This is what we’ve been building the shelter extension for the horses with, which makes winters so much easy on our Sable.
Come spring though, we have to figure out what to do with them…

This year? We put them around the pig yard. And it’s been perfect. Gives the piggies extra shade, Daphne uses them to (safely) watch the pigs, and it’s also something that the pigs can reach through the fencing to chew on.
It’s a winning situation all the way around.
And, next year, when they’ve broken down a little more, we’ll replace them with new ones, and turn these bales into smudges for the horses…and you’ve seen how popular smudges are around here. 😉

And then, this past winter, when Hubby hit a hard poo lump with the tractor, and ended up cutting a hole in the trough, I showed y’all my simple fix, that made it safe to still use for hay feeding.
Once the heat hit, we had to figure out some other fix, or we’d be looking at a new stock tank…which, if any one’s interested, runs about $300. If we could fix it, that’s $300 we didn’t have to spend.

One day, Hubby’s grocery shopping, and he sees a can on the clearance rack. It’s for a flexible spray rubber product.
Well, for $5, he takes a chance and buys it.
And then, using a cut open beer can, he made a patch to cover the biggest part of the hole…so, $5.10 later, we have a fully functional, safe water trough that give the Girls an extra 250 gallons of water.
Yup, totally worth it.

Oh, and the left over part of the can?
He used to fix the chicken waterers that had rusted out on the bottom.
Yeah, so, we didn’t have to pony up another $50 each for those this year either. Which was kinda nice. 😉

But, my real pride and joy for re-use, re-purpose, re-create ideas is this:

Putting Hubby to work…again.

That’s an old pressure tank that some one threw away at the dump.
I said to Hubby “You could cut that in half and we’d have 2 pig feeders”
He says “Yup I could. Shall I load it into the truck?”

And into the truck it went.
It’s been cut, and now we have to spray paint the inside with a metal paint (hello Rustoleum 😉 ) and he has to smooth the edges so that no piggies hurt them selves.
We will then have 2 good-sized feeders for piggies.
With little cost, just some elbow grease.

At the end of the day, I think we can approach this whole Farm/Homesteading thing 3 ways…

  1. the “throw money at it until it sticks” method (which, quite frankly, is what we do with the horses, because horses are money eaters)
  2. the “use it ’til it dies, and then fix it one more time” method (of which I am a huge supporter and practice myself 😉 )
  3. or a mixture of the 2 methods.

The real key is, to know when it’s time to use each method.
Either way, you gotta get your hands dirty…a little soil under the nails…or it’s not going to work at all.
That’s what helps make a successful Farm.
🙂

Friday’s Hunt July 2nd

I made it.
Wheeee!!
I absolutely freaking made it…
Okay, I may have had to do a double post or two, but I did all the letters of the alphabet this round of Friday’s Hunt hosted by Teresa at Eden Hills.
There’s a prize for that, right?
No?
Okay, I’ll be happy with bragging about it. 😉

This week’s prompts are Starts with Z, Week’s Favorite and Dessert.
I’m also going to sneak in an image for The Daily Post’s prompt of passenger. 🙂

Starts with Z

Astrid ❤

Doesn’t she look completely adorable catching some zzzz’s?
Some day, I’m going to catch a video of her snoring. 🙂

Week’s Favorite

2 of them…
My 2 images for Canada Day.
Which was yesterday, and yes, I’m late posting them due to computer issues, including the need for an entire new tower. Now we’re fixed, and back to work.

Ruby

Cookie

Happy 150th to our wonderful country! ❤

Dessert

A little while back, we were given a watermelon to share with the animals. Piggies? Not impressed. But they were younger and unsure of this new food we were offering them.

Hennys was a much different story…

Can you see the watermelon in the fray?

Less than 3 minutes and the hennys polished off their watermelon dessert.

Oh, and yesterday, Astrid had a passenger:

Hubby and Little Red

While I was introducing The Cookie to my brother (she’s really not a people horse 😉 ), Hubby decided to hop up on Little Red and go for a walk.

Volume

Ruby

Some people think that you have to be the loudest voice in the room to make a difference.
That is just not true.
Often, the best thing we can do is turn down the volume.
When the sound is quieter, you can actually hear what someone else is saying.
And that can make a world of difference.

~ Nikki Haley

Turning the volume down, listening to what Black Horse is saying…

 

Friday’s Hunt June 11th

Well, it’s been an interesting week here.
I swear, I’m just itching to have a boring-as-the-day-is-long week, I’m telling you! lol
But, the grand news is, I have finally got some tomato plants in the garden…as well as all my peppers are in, both some hot and some sweet ones.
I have a few more tomatoes to get in, then the carrots, beets, beans and peas. If Hubby manages to get more tilling done, then, I’ll stick a pumpkin or two and some leafy greens.
All in all, it’s not going to be the huge garden I want, but, its way better than last year’s nothing.
And next year…well, next year, I’m going to make it work all over. 😉

Prompts for Friday’s Hunt hosted by Teresa at Eden Hills this week are Starts with W, Week’s Favorite, and Pastel.

Starts with W

What is that I see over there, in the shade beside the fence?

Why, it’s a pile of piggies having a nap.
And oh, what a piggie pile it is!!

Andy Piggie says “Listen Food Lady, if you aren’t bringing us food, then why are you waking us up?”

Well, I wasn’t trying to wake them up. I only wanted a few pictures of them being cute, but when they hear me coming, they jump up, looking for treats and scratches (mostly treats).

Week’s Favorite

Once again, my dear sweet horse spent a week not quite herself.
With the impending rain storm, I thought she might have been in the process of that very unpleasant “C” word that horse owners don’t like to use because we don’t ever want to give that word any sort of Power over our equines…
There has also been a wealth of flies and a few mosquitoes hanging about.

I spent the grocery money on bug juice…between the Konk sprayer in the shelter, and a Konk spray I can use right on her, she’s getting some relief.
But she’s sore. The damp is kicking her right in the arthritis (and last night during beet pulp, I found a mark where someone *ahem*Astrid*ahem* landed a kick on her hock), and we’re looking at adding some new supplements.
I’m trying to manage things as much as possible without using pain meds.
I have good reason for that.
I’m not saying I won’t give her pain meds, but I’m hoping to avoid that for as long as possible.

So, last night, after giving her a good once over with the new bug spray, some stretches and a back rub, I left her to her own devices. Which was the overwhelming need for a nap. I hadn’t even made the house when I heard her heave a big sigh…I turned to see her laying down comfortably, dozing. I went for Voldemort…

Near onto 10 at night, bugs are horrible, and she’s napping…<3

Look at that bottom lip. That’s a sleeping Girl.
I almost let out a shriek of triumphant joy…almost. But that would have woken her, and I didn’t want to do that.
Instead I went back to the deck, enjoyed a glass of wine with my eau’d’equine parfum lingering and watched her sleep.

Pastel

As I sat there, listening to my horse snore (by gosh and golly gee, that’s a beautiful sound…Black Horse snoring. ❤ ) I watched the moon rise. It had a lovely pale red glow to it, and I wondered…could I get away with using that as “pastel” this week?
Then I thought, it’s my blog, of course I can! 😉

Moon over the Farm

Through the trees…

Today is another day…
I’ve spent the morning with my Girl, cold hosing that leg that took the kick, and she’s feeling better. The dampness has eased off (since we’ve had 2 days of rain!) and she’s getting a hoof trim this afternoon.
Hubby dug out a few samples of Absorbine horse liniment that we were given, and I massaged that into her back and pelvic area…
So far, so good. 🙂
And now, I’m sending him and The Kid out driving…they can go to the nearest pet/tack shop and price out a bigger bottle of the liniment. While she gets some driving practice in.

Have a great week ahead, friends.
We’re working on a better one here.

Garden 2017

Y’all remember how last year my garden, due to circumstances beyond our control, became a giant plot of weeds?
Not that we wasted anything, those weeds fed pigs for the summer, but still, it was hard on the ol’ FarmHer spirit to not have a garden going.
In the fall, with the last cutting of pig feed, we started covering the area with old plywood. Stuff we had lying around, but wasn’t good enough for building with…well we discovered that the soil underneath the wood was lovely. Still a bit of grass and weeds, but nowhere near as bad as last year.
Problem was, we didn’t have enough to cover the whole garden…takes a lot of wood to cover a 24×40 foot garden!

Ahhh…but we are nothing if not adaptable to the situation. 😉

The yellow/brown grass is where the wood was…

You can see though, that there is some really good grass growth on the side…*sigh*

So, the space that was covered by wood is about 12 feet wide, and the full 40 foot length of the garden. Even our powerful little tiller was having a rough time with the full grassy area…and so, what we’re going to do is this…

I’m going to plant everything I can in the 12×40 foot space, mulch it heavily with straw, and be happy with a space that is 3 time the size of any garden I had in the city…

Then, while the one side grows, we’re going to use our ever renewing composting manure pile to cover the other side, and then, we have a huge hay tarp we bought…back when I had visions of actually tarping our hay…but that never happened because, seriously, more trouble than it’s worth. You want hard on a marriage?!? Try tarping hay together…I wish I was kidding about that. :/

We’ve had this tarp sitting, and we figured now we’ll put it to good use. It can cover the side that’s too weedy right now, and then, once the growing season is done in the fall, it’s big enough to cover the entire garden.
We’ll start fresh for the entire space next spring. 🙂

See?
Adapt, overcome, move forward.

Tilling my soon to be garden space…

Sable looks on with interest…

As he was tilling, Hubby had to stop periodically to untangle roots from the tines of the tiller…he’d toss them off to the side, and our (definitely not) starving Sable had to try to reach them so she could eat them…

“I am wasting away here, Dad….
I am but a shell of my former gloriousness as a beautiful horse…
Soooooo hungry…
Can I has those roots please??”
~ Sable

While Hubby used the tiller, I put the scythe back to work, and cut the entirety of the rest of the garden, in prep for adding compost and covering.
Like last year, those greens did not go to waste…

The Kid forking green food to piglets…

As usual, when yard work is happening, Daphne ran around like a maniac…nothing this dog does is at low speed. She just runs until she flops down, dog tired.

Having a rest in the long grass…

When we were finally done, and I walked into the house, this is what I found:

Daisy Mae and Odhinn

He’s always complaining about Daisy bothering him…she’s not even 2, he’s an old man at 15. But that doesn’t stop the snuggles when cats need naps. 😉

Brassy

“…I like ’em sweet, I like ’em with a heart of gold
Yeah, and I like ’em brassy, I like ’em brazen and bold
Well, they say that opposites attract, well I don’t agree
I want a woman just as tacky as me
Yeah, I like my women just a little on the trashy side…”
~ Confederate RailRoad “Trashy Women”


Perfect quote for our Ruby…
She is an absolute brazen hussy when it comes to being groomed.
Girl loves her some hands on pampering time.
😉