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When life bites you…

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… bite back.

Sorry for not updating in a while, things have been crazy around here. Silver spent a week in the hospital due to his toe getting infected (after 2 years of a wound not healing isn’t being diabetic fun?). Then we have spent every Tuesday heading back up there to see the foot doc there. Silver’s a vet so he has to go to the VA hospital and it’s a 3 hour drive one way. so any trip up there is a waste of a day.

Our pig caused us some major problems since that day and a person who attends church with my girls came by to put up a hot wire to keep her in her pen. So it makes her learn how to climb out of the pen. After this occurred we could not keep her in her pen at all and all kinds of fun started happening.


invaded the neighbors yard

ate most of my garden

ate 6 chickens (broke into their pen)

started swimming through the septic pond

So, unfortunately when we discovered her eating chickens we had to put her down and with her swimming choices we could not use the meat. We’re hoping the pot bellies don’t have as many issues, the “church guy” has been pig sitting in exchange for 2 of the castrated males.

My peach tree has given up sometime after we got flooded last month. The apple trees seem happy however though. I am digging up whatever the potatoes have produced, I am not expecting much as they all died off during the rain too.

After all the rain we lost a goat, one of our females once all the deluge stopped looked like she was ill (I think she had a cold from all the water). It was a pity as we had hoped for babies from her as it was our milker. On a good note however Momma gave birth on Saturday to a healthy young buck. This morning I spotted him starting to play, so we’re glad he’s doing good. I need to retarp the goat house today however as we’re due rain tonight and tomorrow.

We picked up a injured kitten from an abandoned house a couple days ago, he has a bad leg. We also discovered he had a screw worm in his cheek, we pulled that out Saturday once we found our tweezers. I have to spend the next few weeks trying to take my garden back, as once strawberry started going after it I let it go wild hoping to salvage it. My cucumbers are ok and my sunchokes though she pushed the stalks all down they are still alive.

Hope things have gone well for you.

Be Well, Be safe, and Blessed Be…

Green Thing

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This is so true, scary thing is most people from my generation and younger (39 here) couldn’t make it without all their stuff that gobbles power.

Originally posted on Town & Country Gardening:

In the checkout line at the store, the cashier told the older woman that she should bring her own grocery bag because plastic bags weren’t good for the environment.

The woman apologized to him and explained,“We didn’t have the green thing
back in my day.”
The clerk responded, “That’s our problem today. The former generation did not care enough to save our environment.”

He was right, her generation didn’t have the green thing in its day.
Back then, they returned their milk bottles, soda bottles, and beer bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled, so it could use the same bottles over and over. So they really were recycled. But they didn’t have the green thing back in that customer’s day.

In her day, they walked up stairs, because they didn’t have an escalator in…

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Life and Garden Update!

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So sorry for not posting in a while.  Life is hectic, strawberry is still getting out of her pen so she now has a date with the freezer.  Won’t be till close to Thanksgiving but still.  The “last straw” is when she got all the way to the front of our property and to get her back Silver made a chain leash to go behind her front legs so we could at worst drag her back.  Well.. she dragged him.  Not good for a 56 year old with RA and diabetes. *sigh*   Also doctors put Silver on insulin, odd thing about that.  Last few mornings with his shot the night before his blood sugar has run high.  Last night he forgot to take his shot and is was much lower, go figure.   Sadly however, his toe is no better and might  actually be a lot worse.  So bad it might have to be amputated.  We’re waiting on the VA  to contact the podiatrist so he can go back to seeing him.  The VA drives me nuts sometimes.

Another downside, for those of you who know.  While I am trying to get us “food sustainable” here , right now we are not.  Also because of living on disability we get Food Stamps.  We just went up for re certification, was told a worker would call for an interview here back on Friday at 9am my time.  Ok, no problem.  ..yeah, I sat in the house all day waiting for that call.  At about 10 am I tried to “talk to a person” via their various phone numbers.  Yeah, nope sorry.  Seems you can’t talk to a person, but I did wind up leaving 2 messages on their  “person call worker” interview option.   So it’s possible we’ll lose our food money.  Plus side is it’ll be when our garden is producing and we have eggs so I’m not terribly concerned.  However it irks me.

As for the garden…

I have PICS!

This is my acorn squash, we are hoping to have a lot of these for this winter, I have put some marigold seeds in the center to both attract pollinators and to make the insects that don’t like them to run away.  Funny thing is I planted these about the same time as my zucchini and look…

Definite difference in size there.  The zucchini  is smaller right now.  Though I know it will catch up eventually.  We’re planning on drying over have of what we produce of these for animal feed this winter.

Here is one of my bunches of snow peas (I got my first pod off them this morning!), they are loaded with flowers though not many pods just yet.  I’m hoping they finish before the Cherokee purples and the lemon cucumbers get too big or the peas will be coming out.

Speaking of the tomatoes…

If you can see, just past that pea is one of my tomatoes.  They are starting to flower already!  We’re definitely waiting on these to produce fruit.

This is one of the bell peppers, it’s also looking like it’ll flower soon even though it’s not very tall yet.  I am debating pinching the first flowers off to let it grow more.

My pole beans have sprouted, we’re hoping for a lot from these for chili making this winter.  Also this is one of two varieties of dry bean we are growing.  I planted tiger’s eye as well.  They grow as a bush however and can also be eaten as a green bean.  I don’t have pics of those as they only just started coming up.

Here are the cucumbers I planted for pickling.  If we have an over abundance of the lemons don’t do well we’ll be eating these too.  They were planted next too the pole beans.  I am thinking of growing some kale for the rabbits and the chickens for winter on the other side of these.

Now, this “mess” is my spinach patch.  It’s really taking off after the rains we got this weekend.  Seems to be very happy.

These, would be the sunchokes.  They seem to be a prolific as I have heard and seem to be growing just fine.  That is a two foot stake in the foreground, so you have some prospective.  I have discovered that I have a few surprises in my sunchoke bed however.

Apparently, there were some tomato seeds in the chicken manure I added to this bed.  I staked two of the tomatoes this morning.  However, it seems there are five plants growing in my sunchoke bed and they seem very happy.  So I will let them grow where they are.  Also I have no earthly idea what kind they are as I  grew three different kinds last year.  So I will wait and see what they produce, here’s to hoping they are edible at least.

I thought I’d share this.  It’s one of the wild roses from around here.  Seems all the blooms came out white on the roses this year.  It’s wonderful to walk past this and take a deep breath in.  I do wish I knew why they all are white though.  Last year they were all pink, so maybe it’s yearly change?

Oh one of the rabbit moms had her littler and it seems she had between 6-8 babies, they have a date with the freezer in 2 months.  (yes i eat my rabbits and if one bit you they wouldn’t be cute anymore)

Well I need to head back out and weed some more, happy gardening!

BE Well, Be Safe, and Blessed Be…

History Lesson

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So I imagine some people wonder how a Chicago raised city girl wound up out here in the Missouri wood. Now first my biggest reason for wanting to live here like I do is making sure my family has a good source of food, and that we get regular meals. This is because while I grew up in a middle class family (dad was a welder and mom went back to school to be a social worker). I married not long after high school to the biggest mistake in my life. The ten years I was with my husband we lived homeless and with little food for nine. This piece of work thought it was better to play things like video games, D&D and Magic: The Gathering and spend money on supplies for it rather than feed his family of five.

We had months where we’d be living on a pound of meat with about two cups of dry rice for dinners for all five of us. We were lucky we had WIC so we had cereal and peanut butter for the other meals for the kids. I generally wound up eating only once a day.

I eventually tossed my husband out (for something much worse but that’s not for telling now), and even though I lost the home my father bought me (due to my husband not paying the bills while I worked 2 jobs), I did get a stable home and job. Then I met Silver and we eventually moved here to live our dreams of being in the country and having food we know where it came from and is healthier to eat.

As for my desire to live in the country itself, I was never one who liked to be around people much. I get panicky around crowds, including going to town to buy food when we need it; or when we pay the bills. So living out here where I can be away from a large group of people and just be me I am happy. WE manage, even if we don’t get everything we want done here in a month. Biggest thing to me though is. We get the bills paid, we get the crops planted. We slowly add to our meat animals, and get all the buildings we want built. That so far is happening so I am happy.

Watching a commercial this morning while doing dishes made me think about posting this and to point out a few things. A lot of people think that there are countless people in other countries who have poor nutrition or not much food. That the people “over there” have to decide on if they pay their bills for their home or buy food for their family. Let me tell you, it’s a hard choice to make. When you are sitting there trying to make you money stretch to feed yourself and pay everything so you still have a home and power and put food in your kids’ mouths you wind up hurting yourself sometimes.

I still have a hard time eating three meals a day and most often than not I don’t even think about a midday meal, because if I eat breakfast I tend to not be hungry until evening. It’s leftover from only eating once a day and me learning what it feels like to honestly be hungry.

So now you know why I live out here in the woods and spend my time growing my own food and trying (desperately trying) to teach my girls that it’s a good thing to do.

Be Well, Be Safe, and Blessed BE…

Happy Sunday Morning!

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Thought I’d write up a little update though I’m still temporarily camera-less (my girls are away for the weekend). We finished filling 2 more of the tractor tires as well as one of the tubs yesterday, and Friday combined, I had gotten a Rhubarb plant from the MFA for $.75 and it went in the tub for now. We figure if it grows exponentially it’ll wind up in a tire.

This morning I planted some red onions, bushel gourds, and cantaloupes. Tomorrow I should have my pole beans in and my cucumbers as well. I also need to do more of my green bush beans. Not to mention getting in my herb seeds. One of the Zucchini seeds has sprouted so if nothing else comes up by this Friday I’ll replant the rest. I have about seven acorn squash coming up as well.

I noticed something yesterday in my sun choke bed. We have a volunteer tomato plant. Since I have no clue what kind it is I am leaving it where it is, as it’s on the edge of the bed anyway so it should be safe. I’ll just have to figure out how I’m going to stake it up. My peas are starting to flower, the spinach is doing well and I’ve been getting a little of it daily. (waiting for it to really take off) The eggplant looks to have a flower forming, and the bucket tomato is flowering.

My two Does are looking fatter daily (I wish I knew exactly when they got pregnant), I am hoping to have two sets of twins but as long as they are healthy and grow well I don’t really care. Still need a boyfriend for Strawberry, also a better cage for her too, but we’ll get there. We should have ducks any day now, as they have hatched and it’s a matter of when they get here.

I spent half of last evening making banana bread on our new (to us) gas stove. Our neighbors gave us a small propane stove. Makes me happy I can stop using the electric one. I have over a case of bananas in my freezer that I’m going to be making into more quick bread. One of those fun freebies we received.

We’ve been eating lambs’ quarters now that it’s growing everywhere. Silver gets a small amount in the morning with his breakfast wilted and dressed with a vinaigrette. Then we have some with our evening salad. The girls have about twenty days left of school, then when they are out we will move our big meal to midday-ish. Then have a snack like meal in the evenings. I like summer times as we eat better especially once the garden is doing well. I have hopes for over abundance. The acorn squashes no matter how many we get will be saved for winter eating..

Hope you’re all having a fun weekend.

Be Well, Be Safe, and Blessed Be…

Sunday Morning Chit Chat

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Good Sunday morning (for those of you in my neck of the woods). We’ve had a fun weekend so far, my girls were both gone yesterday morning. One went turkey hunting (didn’t see anything of course), her first time hunting too. The younger one was on a choir competition trip for school after which they went to 6 Flags. We have moved my birthday present (3 tractor tires) out to the garden and have started filling them with soil.

Friday I think it was I planted some bush green beans, in another week I’ll plant more. I am planning on putting cantaloupe’s into one of the large tires. The tomato bucket Silver set up, the tomato is starting to curl up and you can tell it’s growing. Still have lots of hope for that plant. WE were suppose to have a week of rain and it didn’t happen most of the rain had missed us so I had to water my fruit trees for the first time since planting them.

We set up a sprinkler we bought a month ago this morning. We had bought two of them but we discovered one of them didn’t work. So right now as I write this I have a sprinkler watering my garden. I do know that technically watering passively near the base of the plants is suppose to be better, however Nature waters the Earth from the sky so I personally feel as long as I make sure I water early in the morning (like before 10 am) and the sun light isn’t strong the plants should be just fine with overhead watering.

We have almost used up the truck load of top soil and all the composted sawdust we have on hand. I am hoping we can go tomorrow and get more sawdust, however we are suppose to help out a neighbor get his log splitter back from the mechanic so I don’t know if we’ll have the gas to do both before Friday. Helping the neighbor when we promised too is more important in my mind anyway.

I should be starting to pull lettuce out of my garden today as well as some spinach, The spinach isn’t doing as well as I thought it would but it might just be the amount of water it has had so we’ll see. I’m waiting on my transplanted tomatoes to put on some new growth, I am glad they haven’t wilted as they were very leggy. My peppers seem to be happy even though we had some cold nights. Thankfully none of the nights was below or at freezing, however we did brush near those temperatures.

Getting some greens out of the garden now is going to be a good thing as Silver had his yearly check up and the Doctor at the VA wants to put his on insulin because he’s not keeping his blood sugar down. Well since we had to tighten our belts when it comes to buying food lately we’ve haven’t been eating good for a diabetic of late so food from the garden means it’ll lower the blood sugar amounts. I have discovered watching his testing that is the heavy carbs are cut out (rice,pasta,potatoes) and only have nice healthy veggies (mostly greens) and a nice piece of protein his blood sugars run almost normal. I just have to be diligent with it and make sure he doesn’t cheat any.

Still waiting on our goats to give birth, and since I’m not sure when Oreo got them pregnant I am going to be surprised. I have ducklings coming soon and in a couple weeks Strawberry will have a new pen. We still need to find her a boy friend though. Why is it people always are selling what you need when you can’t afford it?

Well hope everyone has a good Sunday.

Be Well, Be Safe, and Blessed Be…

Fruit Tree Update!

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So I thought I’d show how my new fruit trees are doing as I took a picture of each of them when we were out yesterday. Here is the funny part my delicious was the slowest to get started leafing out but look at it now.
Conversely the peach tree the first one to get leaves is going slow to get them full size. Maybe they go slower?

This is doing good to this is the Cortland apple, I think it’ll give my delicious a run for it’s money on speed of growth.
The Mac seems to be doing better, however the buds on the top that had the “rust” on them don’t seems to have produced any real leaves at all.

I hope they keep doing well, and that the peach tree gets a move on with it’s growing. I am pleased so far with these trees from Stark Bros, I do believe I will order from them again in the future. Granted, these guys still have a lot of growing to do.
On another note the grape we’ve had (now in the third year), is doing amazingly this year. It has loads of leaves and is growing like the proverbial weed. I think it’s happy.
So I’m 39 today, ugh another year and I hit 4 decades. Funny how it took me to be in my 30’s to decide living here this way was a good idea. I am happy   Though living here far from the hustle and bustle of the city. Funny how now when we go to town I have troubles dealing with all the people and the funny thing is I grew up in the Chicago area.
Our across the street neighbors are getting their power pole today and seems our power will be off for a short time while they do it. Guess what though our neighbor’s aren’t here to see it, it’s funny as they’ve been waiting two weeks for it to be put in so it’s funny.
Have a good day and be safe.
BE Well, Be Safe, and Blessed Be…
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