Friday, June 28, 2013

Hobby garden/farm?

I am here to tell you....if ONE more yuppy type, concrete dwelling person...tells me..." I wish I could live your sweet life of hobby farming/gardening..I am going to SCREAM! I mean, seriously...just because we only have about 7 acres...does NOT mean this is not a working farm...a HARD working farm. There is NO time for "hobby's" Well, I take that back, sleep is my "hobby" Since a hobby is described as : an activity or interest pursued for pleasure or relaxation and not as a main occupation So, I is farming or gardening a hobby!? When was the last time you mucked out the barn and said to yourself...."Boy, this is pleasurable and relaxing?" Or when you find yourself wrist deep inside of some animals "hoohoo" trying to deliver a stubborn baby. Are you relaxed yet!?? I was thinking of this today, as I was outside in the garden, pulling weeds that are determined to make your "hobby garden" their home....the sun burning down on my back....sweat dripping into my eyes....fighting off the flies that are trying their best to make a meal of me....then, I realized that the last "weed" I pulled was not a weed, but one of my precious little green bean plants. Some might say it was tears in my eyes...and maybe it was...but I will still was the sweat. :) happened....I ran out of poop! OK, well, I guess I didn't really "run out" I mean, it is a farm..and does a farm really EVER run out of poop? I guess I should say... the mulch/poop I and our grand son had hauled to the garden a few days ago....was just under enough of what I needed. This means I will have to hook up the wagon, and head to the barn to get another pile from the yard out a few.....since I had skipped is getting hot out there...I am tired and hungry...I decided to come down a bit, grab myself a sandwich...turkey and cheese, with light mayo and lettuce. I grabbed a couple cheese sticks..and a snack cake. Yes, I know...mass produced, chemical laden soft sweet chocolaty goodness filled with sinfully great creme filling...might be bad for me...but....I wanted I ate it. Slowly...smiling...ahhhh, yep. That hit the spot! Now that I am "relaxed" I am headed back out to get the wagon hooked up and pursue the pleasure of pitching about 200 pounds of wet, stinky, poopy, I can spread it in my "hobby garden" All you farmers out there....take time to relax...while you are pulling weeds, butchering something,chaseing down that rogue critter that demands to run free...or standing over a hot stove canning your winter foods. Enjoy your's only a "hobby"

Sunday, June 23, 2013 and humid....FLIES!!!!

Oh how I detest flies. We have been getting a bit of rain, and all of the animals are making the bedding wet. This with the heat is drawing flies like crazy! I have been so busy trying to keep everyone dry...and fly free. HA! The gardens on the other hand are loving this weather. Rain, hot and sunny, then more rain. Yep, everything is growing like crazy! Last week I had one of our grandson's stay the night. He is almost 13, wow, growing up so fast. We worked pretty hard while he was here. The first day we drug water hoses to the ducks, and cleaned and filled the pools. Then we moved 3 wagon loads of "stuff" from the barn to the garden. We were both pretty worn out. The next day we drug water hoses to the barn animals. Oh, and we made a batch of goats cheese, garlic! YUM! And we made Mulberry Jelly. Today I worked on the Mulberry/blackberry jelly. 24 jars! So far a total of 66 jars of jelly. It seems like a lot, but really it's not.
Here is my grand son pitching out the wagon.
Mulberry jelly, cooking down. The barn swallows had a great year! Look at all of those babies. The flew the nest yesterday....
Our call duck finally hatched out a nest of babies. They are so stinking small...and so cute! She has 7 of them. This water dish is perfect for a swim.
This years grapes are doing great as well. Maybe this year I will try my hand at wine...Hmmm.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Busy, Busy, Busy...STOP!

Ever get the feeling you get one thing taken off of your list, only to see there are 4 or 5 more added to it!? Yep, that is Spring/Summer on a farm. Oh, we all complain a little about it, but come on....admit it....we LOVE being busy. Wake up in the morning, get one cup of coffee in ya while you are checking E Mails, and getting dressed....then head out the door to the sounds of waking farm animals....if you are can be out there and wake THEM up once in a while. I am not THAT good! LOL When I walk out the door, there are usually 3 or 4 cats on the step I swear they are trying to trip me. To the left I hear the goats and sheep....Ma'ing and Bah'ing....hollering for me to feed them first. However, I make them wait...and head to the the poultry, rabbits, and our breeder pigs. The Goose sounds the alarm...the duck scramble at the gate wanting out...and the roosters and hens are pacing back and forth...waiting for me to "spring them" As I walk past the turkey pen, Sage our big tom spreads his tail feathers...and "thump" and a wing drag. This is his way of telling me...." don't come near MY girls" As long as it is all just for wrong move, and we will have a turkey dinner! Fill feeders and waters, check the rabbits and pigeons...feed and water the Guinea hogs and give those babies a few scratches...then I am off to the barn. By now the goats are in total melt down. How DARE I make them wait!? LOL Once in the barn, I grab the 4 feed cans and start filling them. I feed the 2 Ewes,the ram and the buck, then the "feeder pigs" and finally Tulip...our senior Pot Belly pig. Then the "hoard of cats" and FINALLY...the 2 milk goats. Boy oh boy are they loudly protesting! Once they are fed and milked and turned back out to pasture....everyone is settled down for the morning. I bring in the milk, strain it and get it in the fridge, THEN I can have a second cup of coffee. Whew! By then it is usually almost 10 am. Saturday will be the same....except...I most likely will NOT get a second cup of coffee. After all of the morning chores are done, I have to drag out the 300 ft of water hoses to the barn...clean and fill the 4 water troughs...then drag it to the other side of the property to clean and fill the 4 pools for the ducks. Once I get the hoses put away, I have to close the gate to the pasture, and take down a section of fence panel...because by by 2 pm, I will have my hay being delivered. 150 bales, fresh cut! My hay guy is the BEST kid ever. He is not only delivering my hay, but stacking it in the top of the barn for me. :)I love this kid. He really was brought up right. God bless his parents! :) After he finishes.....and I get the fence panel put back, and let the girls back in the barn...hubby should be home from work by then. I will try to get a bite to eat, then I need to get my fishing poles and gear all together. Our son and grandson is coming over around 5pm, and we are going fishing. I can't wait. The perfect end to a busy day! I hope we get a few cat fish..I have been wanting some for dinner for a while now. Maybe even get enough to put a few in the freezer!? How will your Saturday go!?? Busy and fruitful I hope.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

How many times a day do YOU "scratch" your head?

Yep, it is summer time and that means....TICKS! Eww, Ticks...tick me off! LOL How many time a day, do you think there is something crawling on your head, and reach up there to scratch...and feel for "IT"? Those nasty little crawling, blood sucking creatures are out in FULL FORCE! Just thinking about it...I reached up and scratched. I keep saying I am going to get myself some Guineas...but I really do NOT like those little "helmet birds" They are loud, obnoxious, and REFUSE to stay in a coop. *sigh* How can a bird that is so very useful, be SUCH a pain? LOL So yesterday I worked out in the gardens from about 10 am...until 6 pm. Cleaning out a stall in the barn, and taking all of that to the gardens. It took 3 loads...but I was able to get ONE stall cleaned out. 3 more to go. *sigh* However...I was able to put the LAST layer over the potato's. They are growing so fast...and are now in FULL BLOOM! YAY! Now just keep em watered, and wait....and wait...THAT is the hard part....not "stealing" the new potato's.
I had enough barn cleanings to get the tomato,cabbage,broccoli bed covered as well..
This will help with weeds...watering...and fertilizing all together. Since the "manure" is from goats and sheep, it is safe to put right on the garden. It is not considered a "hot manure" I covered the pepper plants as well...there are 4 rows of corn in there..just starting to come up. YAY!!
So after all that "hard labor" was an easy day was so horribly hot and humid. I did go out and did our very first harvest of the year....BEETS! Tomorrow I will be pickling them. We just love pickled beets...I am excited to have some for the table soon! Just look at all those round red balls of yumminess!
So tonight we are supposed to be in for some pretty bad weather....we really could use the rain...just hope the winds are not as bad as they are talking about.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

WHAT!?? It's already JUNE!?

Wow, Time sure flies when your having least that's what I hear...So what we are doing here MUST be fun...right!? Seems just as I think I will get caught up, I fall behind again. Did you know, weeds in your garden grow at a higher rate of speed than a toddler can run away from you in the mall? I think I can hear them growing...this weather has been perfect for things to grow..oh, I can't complain, really... the garden is growing like gangbusters as well. Our potato's are already in full bloom. Time to mulch them up good and let em grow! Right after I pull the weeds around them, and the beets..oh, yep, time to start pulling beets too and get them pickled...then I will pull out the many gallon bags of berries from the freezer of mulberries I have picked in the last week, and get them made into jelly....Just look at how big these Mulberries are this year!! after I clean the kitchen because I didn't have the energy to clean it last night. But, FIRST, I need to finish my coffee...and head out to feed the masses...milk the water to the pigs..ohhhh, those horribly destructive ever so tasty pigs. They have just about a month left to "party on the farm" We have been building raised beds in the garden that seems to want to flood every spring...almost finished with those...still need to make a garlic bed, and one for greens. *sigh* We have some BIG meat chickens that are ready to go off to freezer camp too....their bags are packed, and they are ready to go...yep, as soon as I find a minute to get THAT done. I hope everyone out there in REAL LAND has been able to find the time to sit back and take a breath under a big shade tree with a tall glass of lemonade...Ohhh, that reminds me, I need to make some lemonade. *walks off mumbling about feeding something, watering something, and where did I put that box of jelly jars?*