Tuesday, February 14, 2012

What is this white stuff and why is it on my bushes?

We had snow. Beautiful, lovely cold and school canceling snow. Fortunately the kiddos have all been really good today. The Bob has been his usual mess making self but in a good mood about it instead of showcasing the whiny threes. The other two have played nicely with each other almost all day which is nearly unheard of. I on the other hand have been lazy lazy lazy. I have piles of laundry that need done, critter cages that need cleaned, a living/dining room that is a major disaster still, but I soothe myself with that by repeating that I haven't gotten all my furniture yet. The kitchen is still the bane of my existence, I would much rather be outside with the critters, with my hands in the dirt, watching the plants grow than wash dishes....perhaps I should get into pottery so that I can make dishes that we eat off of once and then I break them down and start over again.....wishful thinking.

The boys are so excited about some of the seed they have started so far. They are coming up nicely and even the tomatillos that I have never had any luck with have sprouted. I suppose they just took Boo's touch to decide they wanted to come up....he is my Sunshine after all. 

Getting ready to move computers over to our new desk, I should return to finish this post after we get things moved around!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Never knew baby steps looked like bunny slippers....

My new bunbuns are beautiful. I have an angora male that is so absolutely beautiful he makes me cry thinking of all the beautiful yarn I will be able to spin with his fur.  Then there is my little baby doe, she is this lovely silver grey and so pretty to be only 12 weeks old. Then Gianormica, big, sweet, and shy shy shy.  I feel like I am finally on my way.

 For almost  21 years I have had the same dream. I have dreamed of owning my own acreage and working towards being self-sufficient. I had always dreamed that it would be me and my poly family. My friends, and people who wanted the same kind of life that I am striving for. People who knew how to be respectful to the land, grateful for what we got and worked for, and considerate and kind to one another. I have had a lot of friends and loved ones that I thought wanted the same things. And some of them I think still want something similar. They will always be welcome. It is who I am. Once someone is family to me, they are always family.

I got sidetracked. I was wanting to detail a bit more for myself and whoever reads this the things that are still constant in my plan. Right now the big D and I are looking at a house on 20 acres. It has some awesome outbuildings, and a couple of mobile homes on it. There is a lot of work that needs to be done to the whole place and a lot of elbow grease is going to be needed to get it up to snuff, but when I look out across it I can see my fruit orchard and my garden in the different seasons... I can see my children and ourselves out playing in the yard. I can see where the goats and sheep and llamas will be, the horses running up the hill when they hear us call. The kids coming bursting into my Den when they get off the bus after school to see what I am working on, and to tell me about their day. When I stand on this place, I can see and hear all these things...I can see Dennis and I snuggling on a glider rocker on the carport watching the humming birds flit around the feeders in the morning sipping tea as the sun comes up.

It is such a peaceful feeling to feel when I am there. Near enough to the lake that from the west sun room we can watch the sun set over the water. I will be able to walk down to the water with the kids in the summer and swim or fish either one, or both for that matter!

I am not crazy about preparing for a natural disaster or some other, but I do believe in preparing ahead. I had neighbors as a kid that always had enough of everything. Anytime any of us ran low on food for what ever reason, they had enough to give to any of their neighbors. I didn't find out until way into my high school that they were Mormon. Their beliefs led them to have at least a year's worth of food on hand, to be able to help people in need, to be prepared when they needed something, and to appreciate the bounty that they had received. I always admired the rows of home canned veggies and fruit, their garden that always had things in it I hadn't seen grow before, like learning as a kid that peanuts grew underground...I never knew. My mom always bought eggs and milk from them for us when we didn't have hens for whatever reason, and she had the hardest time getting me to leave their barn. How could I leave? It was full of turkey's, peafowl, guineas, chickens, cats, and if I was lucky a new litter of kittens or two. A calf or two was not unusual, and of course the ducks and the geese. Gail always had  a smile on his face and a joke to play on me or my sister, but the tricks (treats in themselves) were always followed by a treat from the kitchen from Mildred.

I wanted to be like them when I got to be that age. I wanted to be out puttering around my farm, planting another year's garden, picking another bushel of beans, telling my neighbor kids to make sure they got all the blackberries off the bushes ...every single one, because I didn't want to mess with putting up any more of them that year.

I am working towards that, and I see the three rabbits in my shed right now as the first step in that direction.

Friday, February 10, 2012

A baby step....

For as long as I can remember I have wanted to own a place of my own and have a small orchard, a HUGE garden, and raise critters of all types. To know where my food came from and what it ate, and know that it was treated with respect and love while it was alive, and gratitude and honor as it died. I feel like I am one step closer to that this weekend. I am going tomorrow to pick up my three new rabbits for breeding and fiber. I am getting an Angora male that is white, A New Zealand jr. Doe that is grey, and a Flemish Giant/New Zealand cross doe, I will meet them tomorrow to decide if I want the white FG/NZ cross or the sandy colored one.

This is going to give me rabbits that should be great for meat rabbits and also at least the one buck for angora fiber for spinning. They are about the only thing that I can raise in town with me having a grumpy neighbor who refuses for me to be able to have chickens for their eggs, with food getting higher and higher and higher, I just want to do something to help cut the costs of our living, and to make me feel like I am doing something to help the environment.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Today I woke up and almost couldn't move due to having something out of place in my back. I haven't been able to really get anything accomplished today other than the lights and heat mats put into my little seed starting greenhouse. The boys and I have managed to plant one flat full of seeds, now they are all old seeds so I am not holding my breath, but I have been pleasantly  surprised in the past with seeds that have been even older, so there is still hope.  I have had time to devote to more intellectual pursuits and have started planning my garden.

We are expecting closer to average temps this week, so much of the work I had planned I am likely going to wimp out on doing simply because I don't want to be out in the cold but I can promise I will use the excuse that I don't want to drag my nephew out in it as a way to save face. Dennis and I are going to be putting out what I am going to call my one-two punch garden. We are going to have around a 35x20 foot in ground traditional garden and then some of my raised beds...or possibly all of them, we haven't decided yet. I have 12 raised beds that are shorter and good for everything except your longer root veggies, and one bed that is a foot deep and perfect for carrots parsnips and potatoes. The garden bug always hits me about mid winter especially if we have a handful of nice sunny warm days. We have had more than our share of those nice sunny days this winter and I shudder to think of what may still be in store for us yet, or what our summer may be.

The boys are recovering from their sudden snotty noses, and all three are still loving being in school. Hard to believe that The Bob is going to our local co-op school to help him with his speech. Thankfully he doesn't seem to have the behavioral or the sensory issues that Turkey does. So far they are doing great being in the same classroom together despite my fears that they may clash and fight being in the same class. Boo is LOVING kindergarten and doing very very well, which isn't surprising at the rate he likes to learn. I don't know how the girls are doing in school this year as they are going to a different school this year than they did last. Their previous school sent us their report cards each time and we often got emails from their teachers talking about how they were doing and what they were studying. This year we haven't been lucky enough to receive such communications.

Hopefully there will be photos of our new rabbits up this weekend as I am preparing to go and get a little herd of rabbits started again as long as the wicked wizard of the east doesn't complain just to hear himself rumble.  And I am going to make like a potato...

Sunday, February 5, 2012

And thus another chapter begins

It seems like for every chapter in my life, I can find some way that I have chronicled my journey. I kept written journals in elementary and in high school, poetry in high school and college, then when I started getting online in college my electronic journals began...with my first marriage I was on live journal more often than not talking about my day, my hopes my fears, then I moved to facebook and now I am on facebook and finding that short little posts aren't what I am wanting to share with friends, family and strangers alike mostly because a stranger is just a friend you haven't met yet. I want to share my life. My story.

Every oddity that crosses my mind, my often contradictory interests and thoughts, the things that bring me joy and laughter (with five kids there are plenty of those) and the things that bring sadness and anger. My tales of reaching for my dream of homesteading, of being more self-sufficient, and crafting every moment I can craft. I am here to share those things with everyone and the knowledge I am gaining along the way as I learn about the things that interest me...no matter how varied they are.

I welcome anyone as long as you don't try to start drama, a good conversation is one thing, I have a low tolerance for trolls they tend to upset the goats.