Fall is Coming

Seems like no matter how hard we try to catch up, we just keep getting farther behind.
I think that’s the way of things, no matter what though…

So we’ve shortened the list of things to do before winter a bit.
I had planned on a massive garden expansion into the 70 acre field for next spring.
I just can’t do it.
There’s not enough time or manpower (womanpower?) to get it done.
However, don’t think I’ve given up on expansion plans.
Oh, no!!

I planted into straw bales the past 2 years with marginal success.
This year was better than last year, but now the bales are far too broken down to use as a straw bale growing area.
Right beside those bales, we put a couple black plastic compost bins that have been working as homes for chicks/ducklings.
Now that those birds are ready to move into the main poultry yards, the bins can go back to their rightful uses for compost…but I’m left with an area chock full of straw and bird manure…what to do…what to do…

Oh!!
I know, I know!!
πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚
Since the straw bales are *right there* and they’re too broken down to move with the tractor, I’ll take out the chick/duckling yards, breakdown the bales to cover the manure areas, then cover with composted equine excrement to create a long(ish) wide(ish) permabed ala Zach Loeks

That will get covered with plastic for the winter, so it can marinate and cook and be ready for spring planting.
It’s not as big of an expansion as I was hoping to do this year, but, we can only do what the 3 of us can do…and this, Kid and I can do in a day or two.
And we can always add on later as well.

I’m also working on propagating the grape vine I was given…as it turns out, it should be pruned this fall, so with pruning comes the chance to start more. Fine by me. πŸ˜‰
I think I’ll give another go at propagating the honeyberries as well…because one can never have too many honeyberry plants. lol
And I’m taking a hard look at my black currant bushes too…πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚
One can never have too many fruit bushes, I’m telling ya!!
What I really need to do, is figure out where on the property to put some raspberries.
Someone where they can just go wild!
I love raspberries, they’re expensive to buy, and I have space.
I can remember my Grandmother Kate’s patch as a child.
It was massive.
She’d give us kids a pail, send us into the patch and tell us not to come out until we needed another bucket to fill.
I ate so. many. berries.
πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚
Pooped red for weeks!
I need a patch that big here.

Besides, raspberry plants are more than just berries for food.
Berries for wine, leaves and berries for medicine.
The goal is to grow as much medicinal plants as I possibly can…and one native to my climate.
So there’s been *A LOT* of studying going on for me.

The more I watch the world around me breaking down, the more I see people acquiescing to restrictive demands, the more I hear people demanding mandatory vaccination once a “safe” covid one is released, the more I think about dropping right out of society.
I don’t do submission and I don’t do forced medical procedures.
And I’ve had more than enough emotional manipulation to last 37 and a 1/3 lifetimes.

So, the more I can work on self sufficiency the better.
I suspect that in the next few years, there will be an underground market up and running to fulfill the needs of those who aren’t buying what the talking heads and powers that be are selling.
I mean to be on the ground floor of it.
To be fair, many of us small farmers are the basis of that sort of market anyways…I do think it’s just going to expand as people resist more and more.

Anyways, that might be a little too much for some of y’all.
That’s okay. πŸ™‚
I try to keep it light, but freedom, while sometimes a scary thing, is very important.
But anyone who knows me, knows how I feel about that. πŸ˜‰
At any rate, here’s a link to one of my very favorite Claire Wolfe pieces for your enjoyment:
What’s an Outlaw to Do?
It’s well worth the read.

And finally, a picture of my Ruby…
We had been given a whoooooolllllle bunch of grain screenings for the chickens.
As Hubby was working on getting it into storage bins, he mighta left a feed tub unattended for a wee bit…

“nom, nom, nom…gotta eat as much as I can before the DadGuy notices!!”

Enjoy the weekend folks.
I’m off to run a Rooster Rehab Camp.
πŸ™‚

Monday Morning Roundup ~ August 31st

Since my last post, the beans have exploded.
I’ve been (hahaha) picking and canning and picking and canning.
Today I’m picking again, since we’ve had 2 days of rain, and I can SEE the damn beans from the gate, mocking me, telling me that they’re growing bigger and bigger by the second and I’d better get in there and get them picked before it’s too late!
πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

I might be tired and a bit weird this morning.

One of my pails of beans from last week

I bought yellow bean seeds during the lockdown.
In a fit of irrational rage…because some friends in the US had posted in their local stores, seeds and gardening supplies were roped off and not allowed to be purchased because they weren’t “essential”.
So when I saw seeds in our small town grocery store, I bought them.
Even though there was no sign saying I couldn’t.
No one telling me they were off limits.
I was simply irrationally angry for those who *couldn’t* make that purchase.
I ended up buying a lot of seeds…and mailing a whole bunch of them out to people because fuck anyone who says a garden and growing food isn’t essential.
πŸ‘ΏπŸ‘ΏπŸ‘Ώ

Anyways, I still had a good amount of yellows to plant, so I did.
And the green beans are pinto beans we got as feed for our chickens last Fall.
I planted a few in pots in the house to see if they could be used for fresh eating, and yup, tasty as steamed beans when young.
So I planted a whole lot of the them too.
Plus I have a 50ish lb sack of them for the next few years.
πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚
It’s a good thing we really like beans.
But, free food is free food, right?
I mean, the beans were given to feed the chickens.
Well, I fed chickens cooked beans all winter and *still* had enough to grow for us.
And still have more to grow for us.
No complaints from me, I tell ya!

This past weekend we started putting meat chickens in the freezer.
We had, earlier in the summer, an incident…
A coyote decided we were growing some mighty fine looking meaties and decided to help themslves to our birds.
*sigh*
It happens, sometimes.
This was our first huge loss.
As in, all the birds ear marked for sale were now gone, and most of our personal eating birds too.
Fucker didn’t even eat much of ’em.
Just killed them for fun.
πŸ˜₯
But that’s nature, and now we have to re-do the meat chicken house so it doesn’t happen again.

I was lucky enough to find someone getting rid of some meat birds she raised though.
The abattoirs are busy, and she couldn’t get a slot booked and didn’t want to butcher them herself…so she sold them.
I snapped up 20 of them.
I would have loved to have taken the entire flock of 80, but the money just wasn’t there.
Ah well.
20 to go with the 15 I had left made it so that I could get some in my freezer and fulfill my promised birds.
Left me nothing for sale, but at least the people I promised birds to got theirs.

Next up, another round of roosters.
Plus I have several older hens who are ready to go into the soup pot.
And then there’s those ducklings I bought, who are growing like freaking mad!
So we’re gonna be okay this winter, just not as flush as we had thought.

Last week we had this young lady traipse through the Farm…

😍 So pretty! 😍

Lucky girl that hunting season hasn’t opened yet…otherwise she’d have been going to Freezer Camp.
πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

And then, while we were doing chicken butchering on Saturday, Hubby got a call asking if we wanted some wheat for the chickens.
Um, yeah!!
So we got the back of our truck filled to over flowing with freshly combined red wheat.
And now I’m searching for a grain mill, because I feel like making wheat beer, whiskey and wine are gonna be necessary…and after malting, I have to crack the grains to do it.
So that’s my next purchase…because homemade booze is a good thing.
πŸ™‚

Weekend Project

This is how it started…
5 (almost 6) yards of 3/4″ limestone gravel.
And Daphne.
πŸ˜‰

Midway through…
We were hauling it by 3 gallon pail loads (because 5 gallon loads were too heavy) but it was clear we were gonna run out of energy *fast* if we didn’t get it closer to the end spot.
Thank heavens for the tractor!

It’s just about 8 inches deep at the foundation.
Hubby fixed the rotten boards on the deck, hauled out the gross flax straw bales that were against the house (they’ve been there since we moved in and they were vomit worthy, lemme tell you!), spray foam insulated aaaaaaalllllllll the nooks and crannies, and then we began hauling gravel.
So, 8 inches at the foundation, and it eases out to roughly 2 inches at the end, and then there’s these loads to spread yet.
This will be roughly 1-1 1/2 ” deep.
Just enough to discourage the feathered assholes from dust bathing and cats from pooping under there.

We are very tired from this.
This weekend brings the next task…
Basement lighting and cleaning.
*sigh*
Because it. never. ends.

July 1st

Happy Canada Day!

It’s another warm one here, though no where near as bad as it’s been the past few days.
Last night we got an amazing down pour of rain.
It’s made everything growing perk up a lot.
5 days ago I planted just about 800 bean seeds in the garden.
Whole rows popped up overnight.
I’m so happy to see that!!
Tomatoes and peppers are outside (not planted yet) and came though a-ok.

Only downside is the pressure is killing my head.
I’m sitting in the air conditioning, drinking beer and trying to ignore the migraine trying to rip my head off.
:/

I’m also editing a few pictures I took today.
We popped over to the local horse Rescue to take some shots.
So I’ve got those working, as well as a few of the mares here.
Because how can I take pictures of other horses and not my own?
πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

I’m actually marveling over how well our CinderBella (Sable) is doing this year.
2 years ago at this time she was so sick…we had no idea what was wrong and honest to Dog, I wasn’t sure she was gonna pull through.
I spent many a night praying to Epona for clear guidance on whether to let her go or not.


Thankfully, as we were reaching our financial limit, Epona said “It’s not her time yet, she has more to do for Me” and our sweet mare made an abrupt turn around.
I cannot express how grateful I am for that turn around…to this day, we still don’t know what caused the infection that made her sick, or even where exactly it was…we know she has arthritis in her TMJ, but that shouldn’t/wouldn’t have caused the infection.
Either way, she’s been running at anywhere from 95-100% heathly since.
She is such a special horse and we are so lucky to have her in our lives.
πŸ’›πŸ’›πŸ’›

There Was a Plan…

For this weekend.
It’s the May long weekend here in Canada.
Typically this means it’s time to get the garden planted.
Meh, where I am, waiting another week or two is a good idea because of those sneaky frosty nights that love to kill tomatoes and peppers just for a good time.
But, there’s other things that need to be done to get ready for the mass exodus of plants out of my house and into my garden…
That’s what we were planning to work on this weekend, so that during the week I could get seeds in and then plants go in next weekend.
*sigh*
If’n you wanna hear God laugh, tell Her your plans.
πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

Friday The Kid’s phone crapped out.
Dead as a doornail.
Nothing more than a smart phone shaped paperweight.

So I go looking to see what we can replace it with and what local cell stores are open.
Because the virus, y’know.
Gotta make sure the small town stores close and funnel folks into the big city to do their business.
Bcause that absolutley makes sense, right?
Those of us who’ve stayed *out* of the city now have to go *into* the city to take care of things.
Effing brilliant.
Said no smart person ever.
πŸ™„πŸ™„πŸ™„

That was Saturday shot to Hell.
Didn’t even come away with new phones…we figured ours are on their last legs, so we’d upgrade everyone at the same time…but…there’s some network blather that made it so that the technician helping us couldn’t port the number from Kid’s old phone to the new phone and someone at a different location had to do it and we couldn’t have the phone ’til it was done…
Essentially, it’s a stupid system and when they get to ours it might take an hour to do or it might take 5 days.
They don’t know.
πŸ™„

Today we were going to work on the garden.
Until…
I woke up with seasonal allergies kicking my ass.
Yes, I know it’s allergies.
No it’s not SchrΓΆdinger’s Virus.

So I took a Reactine.
Fuck.
What a mistake.
Non-drowsy my shiny metal ass.
Normally I take the Costco brand of Reactine.
Same medicine in it, different carrier, clearly, because I *never* get drowsy on the Costco version.
But the name brand stuff?
Yeah, can’t say the same.
In fact, I’m feeling side effects so bad that I called off working on the garden.
I just can’t.
The allergy symptoms are gone, but the side effects…drowsy, foggy, drowsy…are kicking my ass.

And so, tomorrow for garden work.
And if the allergies are acting up again, I’ll stick with my Costco brand allergy pills.
Plus, they’re a whole lot cheaper than the name brand.
200 Costco allergy pills for $18.99.
Or 48 Reactine pills on sale for $38.99.
Mind boggling.
Seriously.

In other news…

The meaties, 2nd hatchers and turkey poults are doing very well.
Getting big.
Next weekend they’ll move to the meat chicken house.
In fact, they’re don’t even have heat on during the day now.
It’s too warm in the brooder with it on…so we’ve added a wire section to let cool, fresh air in for them to enjoy.
Soon they’ll have the fun of running around outside. πŸ™‚

Now, one of the joys of the easter egger/barnyard mix chicks is the interesting colour combos we get.
Like this eagle looking one:

Kinda cute little fella…

“I am the albatross!! I will destroy you all!!”

Sure ya will, little buddy…

Gonna have to grow a wee bit more before you do…
πŸ˜‰

Out 43 first hatchers are now mixing slowly with the adult chickens.
And next weekend the eggs in the incubators should start hatching.
I did realize though, that my next round will only be with the big incubator.
I have 3 muscovy duck eggs in the small one, and they take up to 35 days to hatch, compared to 21 for chickens.
So, they have to stay in for another 2 weeks, leaving me with one working incubator for another round of chicken eggs.
*shrug*
I didn’t think of that, just wanted ducklings, and now I gotta deal with it.
And we’re letting the muscovy hens hide eggs so hopefully they’ll hatch them out and not let them rot.
Fingers crossed.

Capture52 Week 11 ~ NQR

Yep, behind again.
lol

NQR stands for “not quite right” and for that I offer you this:

It is a very cute shot.
I love, love, love the faces a horse makes while having a good shake after a roll.
Makes me smile every damn time.
But, it also makes it hard to get a good, crisp image.
And that’s part of why this one is “not quite right”.
Focus isn’t spot on, Astrid is in an odd spot in the frame and the snow is blown out in the background.
It’s not a bad enough image that I’d cull it.
Let’s face it, perfect images are awesome, but the not quite right ones are fun too.
And, rules are made to be broken.

Sharing with Comedy Plus for Happy Tuesday.

Freelance Writing

I don’t know how people do it…make money blogging.
I just don’t.
I’m clearly missing something…I’m sure it’s the lack of ads and affiliate links…or maybe I’m not pimping myself out quite right.
lol
If you’ve got any secrets on how to do that, (make money while blogging, not pimping myself out) please feel free to share. πŸ˜‰

That said…I have, in the past, picked up a little extra money freelance writing for online homesteading magazines…most notably homestead.org.
And, having submitted a few ideas back in January, I got the go ahead to write 3 articles for them.
Yay!

So I’m busy writing those…and once they’re live, I’ll share the links so y’all can read them.
πŸ™‚
Hopefully I can keep up the writing streak here, but, things might get light here and there.
Paying work has to come first.
Mama gots to makes the moneys, ya know?
πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

But I’ll do my best to keep things rolling here…after all, in just about 2 weeks, there’s gonna be chicks hatching, and I’ve got 3 new ducks coming today…including a drake for my Muscovy hens.
I don’t want y’all to miss chicks or ducks. Or new equine pics. Or the latest Capture52 shots.
Just bear with me if I’m slow, ‘kay?

πŸ–€πŸ–€πŸ–€

Sharing with Brian’s Home for Thankful Thursday
Because I”m thankful to be able to share my Farm life with everyone and I’m thankful to have a few paying jobs coming.
πŸ™‚

Rooster Rehab

It is a fact of our Farm life that the only animals here without a job are the horses.
Well, I guess considering how often they have to participate in photo shoots, that’s not quite true.
But they get to eat money more than any other animal here.
πŸ˜‰

Saturday, we thinned out the flock of roosters.
We had in our coop, with roughly 40 hens, 10 roosters.
That is way too many. 3-4 roos to that many hens is much better for everyone.
That way the boys aren’t fighting, and the girls aren’t being over used.
Bare patches on some of the girls is not a good thing.
So, we sent some boys to rehab…aka freezer camp.

The 2 I had held back from last years hatches were 2 of the 6 who got the chop.

This guy is named “Replacement”.
He thinks he owns the place.
lol

Replacement, while handsome AF, had turned into a colossal asshole.
I have no room in my coop for a rooster who attacks humans.
And, he went for my face a couple of times while I was collecting eggs.
So, off with his head.
I won’t even offer up a rooster for free who attacks humans.
That’s some straight bullshit.
Aggressive means soup.

This guy, who eventually earned the name “Fred” went too.
See, back on New Year’s Eve, when we picked up those extra chickens, 3 of the 11 were roosters.
Big roosters.
Like nearly 14lb roosters.
Big boys.
(Those 3 stayed, btw, to breed some size into our flock. Because roosters are food for humans and felines alike here)

Well, Fred thought he was the cock of the walk and tried picking a fight.
Fred got his ass handed to him by one of the big boys.
Ahem…the big guys are named Larry, Darryl and Darryl, fyi. πŸ˜‰

And Fred was never the same.
Fred was a broken, unhappy rooster after that.
So Fred has become ground Fred and Fred soup.

Now we have more meat in the freezer for us, and there’s a whole lot more happiness inside the chicken coop.
πŸ™‚