Monday, March 31, 2008

Weekend Fun

This weekend has reminded me of Michael's early days in the Navy...HURRY UP and WAIT!! We were scheduled to play baseball, but due to rain it kept getting postponed. Here is a picture of Jacob during one of the many rain delays. We still had to hurry to get to Knoxville for the scheduled games, but then we had to sit around and wait. We finally did get to play one game this weekend.

Our family took advantage of the time. We spent the afternoon in Bass Pro Shops just looking and enjoying being together. I have noticed since our older boys are now in their teens people look at us more when we are all together than they did when all of our children were small. Perhaps it is because all 7 of us take up more space or maybe they just aren't use to seeing teenagers with their parents and siblings having an enjoyable time. While we were in the store, a man stopped our oldest son and started talking with him. It was apparent that Matthew knew this man, but I didn't have a clue who he was. As they were talking, the man asked Matthew who all the kids belonged to. Matthew grinned and said they were all his siblings. The man thought he was joking, and quickly realized that Matthew was serious. He was amazed and a bit dumbfounded. He told Michael and I that we had a nice family while shaking his head upon leaving.

I also noticed the people at the ball park watching us. Have you ever felt like you were in a fish bowl being observed? They seemed surprised that our teenager would openly show me affection in public. The people on our ball team were not mean they were just curious. I guess they haven't seen all of us together either. I can only imagine how other LARGER families must feel when they all go to places together. After all, we only have 5 children! I guess it is all in your perspective. I don't see us as having a large family. It just feels right.

grace and peace,

Friday, March 28, 2008

One Tired Momma

It has been said that a picture is worth a thousand words. This picture of Missy depicts me at the end of this week...tired. It has been a good week, but it has also been a whirlwind week for us. Michael has worked an enormous amount of hours to bring a project to completion at work. The kids have all been out of school which has given us free time to play. We have done an abundance of that mixed with some farm work and housework and now I am tired. Need I say more about Pizza Hut for dinner? We don't usually get meals out, but upon occasion I throw up the white flag and surrender to a pizza brought back to our home.
My husband and I communicate on just about everything. This past week has found us unable to chat about daily things. He has been in an area that phone calls and emails are not available, and I have not had a working cell phone to reach me when I am out. This is a recipe for disaster. I had told 2 of our children that they could have friends spend the night. He told 2 more of our children they could have friends spend the night...this all happened last night. When it was all said and done we had 4 extra kids show up last night for a night of entertainment. The night was full of laughter and fun. That was all fine and dandy until I got tired of hearing laughter at 2:30 a.m. This Momma had had enough. Finally everybody was down for the count including myself.
I am thankful for the start of a new day and praying for an opportunity for a nap.
grace and peace,

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Just Horsing Around

Everybody is enjoying the warmer temperatures here on our farm. Sully Man is sowing his oats or more appropriately sowing his hay. We haven't purchased anymore hay in the last 2 weeks. We have fenced our animals off from the top pasture so that it could green up and be ready for them when needed. If the perimeter fences were ready, we would go ahead and turn them out now. However, we don't want to lose any of our sheep so we will wait until fence repair is completed. The only problem is that Michael is working non stop at his "real" know the one that pays the bills. There is a huge project at work that he is tending for the next few weeks so fencing will have to wait a bit.

Yee Haw it's spring!!!! We are all happy about the new season!

grace and peace,


Wednesday, March 26, 2008

More Garden Progress

Yesterday was a garden day for our kids. Hope took off the plastic to let the little plants get some sunshine and water. We haven't gotten our drip works watering system fixed in all 3 beds so we have to water the plants by hand. Hope didn't mind that job.
The next step for our upcoming garden season was to move the chickens. We have kept them on the area where our last 5 beds are located. They have tilled it, eaten bugs, and removed the weeds. Now it is our turn to go put it all back together. Here are the older 3 boys trying to untangle the chicken fence. Don't ask how it got tangled in the first place!
Here are our beds after the chickens have been removed. There is some work to be done in here. I will post pictures of it when we put it all back together again.

After we moved the chickens, we found these eggs in one of the garden beds. We just gathered eggs a couple of days before. Seth brought in 21 eggs that day and now we have these. I am thrilled to have eggs once again.
On Monday, I also planted pepper seeds of all varieties in our shop. I planted a lot of different flower seeds too so I am looking forward to the little seeds germinating. I am still waiting on my seeds from Heirloom Acres. He told me when I ordered that it would be about 2 weeks until shipping. I knew that would be o.k. because I already had a lot of seeds to start planting. I usually have Hope help me with seeds, but on Monday it was cool in the shop. She wasn't that interested so Jacob offered to go down with me. It was the first time he had ever planted seeds with me, and I think he really enjoyed it. He helped transplant summer squash and zucchini plants into larger containers. That was his favorite part. The seed planting got mundane to him after awhile, but he stuck it out long enough to be a huge help to me.
grace and peace,

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Cades Cove

We spent part of the weekend with my brother and his family down at Cades Cove. We had a wonderful time. There are many historic homes and churches sprinkled throughout the cove. It was an actual settlement from the early 1800's. Several of the homes, churches, and grist mill are still there for people to see. The homes are unfurnished, but they are open for people to walk into. This is a great learning tool for children and adults too. I have always loved old churches. I enjoy walking through the cemeteries and looking at the headstones. As we were walking, my brother made the comment how much he enjoyed old churches and cemeteries. I was shocked because I had no idea he had the same desire as myself.

Cades Cove was eventually bought and became part of the Great Smoky Mountains National Forest. Here is the picture of the grist mill. The park service was grinding corn the day we were there.

This is one of the barns. I forget the name of the barn, and I would really like to study the origin of this design. It looks like a large mushroom.

One of the homes located in Cades Cove. I am still amazed at how much work would have gone into building the homes.

This home was part store and part home. The woman who lived here never married and she was known to the people of the Cove as Aunt Becky. She helped raised her brother's children after he became ill. It is always nice to go to a community that has been frozen in time. There were no electric lines to pollute the view. As we kept looking at all the gorgeous pastures I kept wondering how many sheep could that pasture hold or what a lovely place for a garden. Sometimes I think I was born in the wrong time period. However, I know God doesn't make mistakes. At times, I feel drawn to that lifestyle. I think I would have enjoyed it.

grace and peace,


Monday, March 24, 2008

A Glimpse into Small Town Life

Michael and I went to buy feed on Saturday afternoon. We buy it from a farmer that lives out a ways. He sells feed in bulk and he custom mixes from the recipe that you give him. We purchased 1400 pounds of feed and saved quite a bit of money. While we were waiting our turn, a man that we did not know was helping the guy in front of us. We assumed they were friends. After they were finished, the man walked back to his truck with a large smile on his face. He stopped to talk with us and told us the other man was a district manager for a large farm store throughout our area. He was raising Katadin sheep, just as we were, and he was giving a lot of information. Michael went to speak with him while Seth and I chatted with the other man by our truck. The district manager was quite helpful. He shared his recipe for feeding up his sheep. He also shared information about programs that our county is doing to PAY us for cross fencing and watering systems. Michael informed him that we did not want any part of NAIS and we would not sign up for it just to get some money. He assured us we would not need to. He then gave Michael the man's name at a local store that we needed to see to get more information. As we we were leaving, the man informed us that if we needed T posts that today was the day to buy them at the local farm store because they were going off sell at the end of the business day.

We promptly left and drove to the local farm supply store to purchase our T posts. While we were there, the man who helped Michael load the T posts was the very man we needed to talk with about the county program. He gave us a wealth of information and invited us to his farm. He also has Katadin sheep and he has some rams to sell in the next few months. Guess what we need? We need a good ram. We also extended an invitation to come look at our farm. By sharing ideas with other farmers, it allows all of us to grow and become better at what we do.

This is one small part of living in a small town. Most everybody chats with one another and a lot can be gleaned from those chats. What appears to be simple chatter actually leads to some great opportunities as well as friendships.
grace and peace,

Saturday, March 22, 2008

When Did it Get so Green?

As we were driving through our area last night to head to Gatlinburg, I was amazed at how green it has gotten. I was amazed that spring had sprung and I was missing it. I didn't realize how many trees had already started blooming out...the Bradford pears and the red buds are breath taking. How can a person such as myself who loves being outside miss something as show stopping as spring???? I comfort myself with the fact that it probably just all happened over night. I did notice our 2 little peach trees have sweet little buds on them. This is the 3rd year they have been in the ground so I do not plan on picking the buds off this year. My husband says we should to promote trunk growth. We will have to call the UrbanHomestead and see which one of us is accurate!! Until then...I think I will just enjoy spring.
grace and peace,

Friday, March 21, 2008

Holiday Weekend

Today is Good Friday which starts the beginning of Spring break here for our family. It is a time to enjoy one anothers company and to get a few things done around the farm. I am thrilled that my middle brother will be spending several days in the Smoky Mountains renting a cabin. We will be spending some time with him and his family. Today is his birthday so for the first time in many years I will get to give him a coconut pie for his special day. We will also be spending Easter together doing a very nontraditional thing which is hiking. This whole breaking of tradition has me all confused. I haven't done the normal things that I usually do on the Easter holiday which is cook a large meal, go to church, and invite other people to our home. It is good to mix up traditions upon occasion. I have been reading several people's blogs who celebrate the Jewish holiday at Easter time. I am very curious about this, and pondering on this for next year.
We will be taking some time to celebrate communion as a family. I know many people do not agree that it is proper for a family to celebrate communion in their own home. For those people, that is the job of the pastor/priest. However it is our conviction that we are all New Testament priests (Revelation 1:6). Therefore we have no problems with communion being served in our home. It is not a conviction that we would argue one way or the other, but something that we as Christians feel liberty to do. We have spent many years as Christians throwing away all of the pagan traditions. For years, we did not celebrate Christmas or Easter because of the pagan roots. Yes, both holidays do have pagan roots, but we threw the baby out with the bath water. We went to the other extreme. As we have grown in the Lord, I feel like we have found more of a balance. Balance is good, and I am at peace in celebrating the Lord during both holidays. After all, HE IS RISEN INDEED!
grace and peace,

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


Our family traveled this past Christmas to Ky. to celebrate the holiday with family. We came back to our home on Christmas Eve so that our children could celebrate Christmas day in their own home. Upon the drive home, I received a call from Cheri (tnfarmgirl) who mentioned that we should not stop for dinner. I knew something was up, but I wasn't quite for sure exactly what it was. When we arrived at our home, we found this setting on our counter. Dinner was just the beginning of the awesome basket that was bursting forth on our counter.
Soaps and salves were also present. One of her children even stuck in a chew toy for our dog. There was everything but the kitchen sink!!!
The crown jewel of the dinner was an awesome Pecan Pie which happens to be my favorite pie in the world. According to my husband, it was the best Pecan Pie he had ever eaten. I would have to agree.

Friends are something that Michael and I hold near and dear to our heart. They aren't to be taken lightly. These are the people who are willing to drive 45 minutes one way just to deliver a Christmas basket of goodies as a welcome home gift or the ones who are willing to listen when your heart is heavy. Cheri is one of those people, and I am honored to call her friend. Even when we did not know her very well, she was always eager to teach us about farm life. Her knowledge has been a well spring here on our farm.

Please take the time today to lift her and her family up to the Lord in prayer. This day is one that will be hard for her. I know that she would be much encouraged to know that the Body of Christ is lifting her up to the Father. For myself, I want to be one that is willing to hold up her arms when she is weak...just like Aaron did for Moses. Isn't that what friends are for?

grace and peace,


Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Blowing Again

The wind blew again last night. I truly don't like the wind here in our little area. I am learning how to sleep with the wind blowing, but I still wake up throughout the night wondering what is being destroyed. Believe it or not, I hadn't even thought about my plants. About 1:09 a. m., my husband said, "I hope your plants aren't being smashed and blown away". For the rest of the night, I dreamed off and on about plants being blown from here to yonder! When I awoke this morning, I found that our chicken fence had been blown down so now all the chickens are dining in the garden. To be exact, they are feasting on seeds in my pea bed. I can't do anything about it as of yet seeing how the wind is still blowing. Plus I need our 11 year old to go catch the chickens. He is much better at that then myself. When the wind stops, I will go down to see what damage has been done by both the wind and chickens. I guess the bright side is that I have been saying that we need to move the chickens for the last two weeks, and now the wind has helped us do just that!

grace and peace,

Monday, March 17, 2008

What's Up

Spring is coming into its own here in East Tennessee. The grass is turning a beautiful green and the flowers are starting to bloom. There are buds on many trees just waiting to burst out of their casings into tiny soft green leaves. This is a beautiful time of the year and I enjoy it to the fullest. No words can truly capture the beauty of God's creation coming back to life after a season of dullness.

We are busy here planting seeds and growing plants to put in the garden. This week will find me in our makes shift greenhouse planting more tomato seeds along with pepper seeds. We grow many different variety of peppers. Each year I try to add one new type so I will be growing Pepperoncini Peppers. Now all I have to do is find a great recipe to can them so we can use them with our homemade pizza. If any of you have a good recipe for this, please send it my way. I surely would appreciate it.

We are still looking for a steer to raise up for our own beef. I would have never dreamed it would be this hard to find one. Tnfarmgirl told us of a family that raises black Angus cows. I talked with the woman and she said theirs would be ready to sell in May. They will be about 600 pounds by then so I am thinking that this will be our best route.

We also HAVE to move our chickens off the remaining garden beds this week. We need to let those beds rest a bit before we can plant in them since the chickens have been there. That leaves me with only 1 garden bed to plant in right now. I am sure this year we will add probably 5 more beds to our garden. That will give us a total of 15 beds. Michael also needs to fence off our upper garden area so that we can plant the potatoes that I bought last week.

These are the projects that are under way on our little farm for this week. I best get busy getting some of my to do list accomplished!!!
grace and peace,

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Garden Progress Continues

Yesterday was an unexpected productive garden day. I had to run to town to retrieve a back pack that our youngest son left at the ball field. I never like to do just one thing in town due to the price of gas so I try to combine different errands while I am there. I decided to run to our local feed store and grab some of my hybrid seeds that I couldn't order from Heirloom Acres. I found my Ambrosia Cantaloupe seeds that I pined for last summer, and I also picked up a pack of Super Sweet 100 Cherry Tomatoes seeds. I grabbed a pack of onion plants and a 50 pound bag of Yukon Gold Potatoes. I then came home and planted a bed of Peas and some lettuce plants. It started raining heavy so I wasn't able to put the onions in the ground, but I will get to that sometime this week. I then headed to Michael's shop and started more tomato seeds. I noticed yesterday that a few of my tomato seeds that I planted the other day had already popped through into tiny plants.
I love days like this when unexpected events turn into good progress. There is something very rewarding at looking at what a bit of hard work yields in the garden. I stand at my kitchen window at look out at our garden beds and realize that once again food is growing there for our family and others. There is such a satisfaction at knowing that I have learned this through trial and error, and our family is eating from the fruit of our hands. I see the hand of the Lord in all of this, and once again my heart overflows with thanksgiving.
grace and peace,

Friday, March 14, 2008

Touches of Spring

Yesterday before leaving for baseball practice I put together a spring arrangement. I had purchased the flowers a few weeks ago for about $8.oo. I already had the vase which came with a flower frog. (That is a lid that looks like a toothbrush holder with holes in it). The frog holds the flowers in place so there is no need to use florist foam. If you don't have any frogs, you can make one using scotch tape on a vase. Make a tic tack toe pattern across the entire top of the vase with the tape. This will hold the flowers in place. I was amazed at how much one small arrangement would perk up our kitchen area. I love seeing all the spring colors and flowers each time I walk into the kitchen. My husband even commented on it when he came home. I love it when I can express some creative moments without it breaking the bank!
grace and peace,

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Another Bed Planted!!!

I planted the rest of my plants yesterday. Michael hasn't made the hoops as of yet, but the weather forecast looks good for these plants not to need hoops for now. We also planted lettuce seed, spinach seeds, and green onion sets in our beds. In our makeshift greenhouse, we have zucchini and yellow squash growing. They are still in the beginning stages, but they are little plants. I also planted a few tomato seeds the other day, but they haven't germinated as of yet. We wanted to try to grow early tomatoes just to see if we could.

I also organized all of our seeds from last year. We keep seeds in an old refrigerator in the basement. By keeping them cold, the seeds will last much longer that way. After doing an inventory and alphabetizing them, I made my seed order for this year. We order our seeds from Heirloom Acres. We were very pleased with them last year, and I am sure we will be the same this year.

There are two items that I can't purchase from Heirloom Acres. I love Ambrosia Cantaloupe and I also want to grow Mild Jalapenos. Both of these are a hybrid and so I will have to find the seed else where. I tried growing several different heirloom cantaloupes last year, and I was disappointed with each and every one. I do grow regular hot jalapenos, but I also like the mild ones for canning. I use the juice from my mild jalapenos to add flavor to Mexican dishes and soups. I can control the amount of heat I add to my dishes by using the mild ones.
I also have to find Yukon Gold Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes "seeds" for planting. We have never grown Sweet Potatoes before and that was one of my goals for this year. In our area, Yukon Gold Potatoes can be hard to find. I don't want to order them due to the cost of shipping.
grace and peace,

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Happy Birthday

We celebrated our little man's 4th birthday this week. Yes, he is in major need of a haircut, but we didn't get that accomplished before his special day. All he has wanted for months was Moon Sand so my mom purchased him a nice set. It is a bit messy, but he has already had a ball with it. Here is a picture of his cake. No, I didn't make it....the bakery did. For our young children, we have always put a bakery cake into the birthday budget. It is a special touch. In times past, I have made and decorated young children's cakes. However the bakery does a MUCH better job. All 3 of our older children have outgrown bakery cakes. Our 11 year old is NOT impressed with them. He was trying to talk the 4 year old into having me make him a great tasting cake instead. As you can see, Seth didn't buy into it all.

grace and peace,

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

A Beautiful Day to Take a Walk and Survey the Farm

On Sunday afternoon, Michael and I took some time to walk our farm. The day was glorious and we so enjoyed the sunshine and warmer temps. When we walk our farm it is always a time of thanksgiving for what the Lord has done in our life. He has given us the desires of our hearts where this farm is concerned and we are thankful. Walking the farm is also a time of looking to see what needs to be done next. We surveyed fences to see where the neighbor's emus are coming through, and we found it. Next on the list will be to get the emus back home and repair the fence. As we walk, we always find time to dream the next dream concerning this farm. It becomes a time of sharing ideas and desires for the days ahead.
We were thrilled to see green pastures in our upper field. We have closed the fences to keep our animals off the land to let the grass return. Our drought was so severe last summer that our pastures were not this green in the middle of summer time. By the way, we have had rain this spring, but we still haven't recovered from last year's drought. We are still praying for more rain.
This was the first time that Michael's border collie pup has gone out onto our farm with us. He had a great time exploring all the new smells.
We purchased our sheep from a farm that also has Border Collies. The woman raises them and uses them to herd the sheep. Every time our sheep see our little puppy, they come to him and wait for his command. It is amazing. I stand in awe as I watch this. The funny part of the whole thing is that our puppy isn't really sure why 10 sheep all gather around him. He looks a bit confused by the whole process. When the pup is about a year old (around next Christmas), we will take him to a local trainer to teach him to work sheep. We already see some of his instincts come out when he is with the sheep so he is progressing well.

Our time together as a husband and wife sharing our dreams is valuable to our marriage. These times together provide us with so much more than great ideas. It is a time that we can share our heart with one another and know that the other person is really listening. There are no distractions for us...just each other. Perhaps this is the greatest gift to our family that the Lord has provided with this farm. After all, a strong marriage is one of the greatest gifts that a couple can give to their children.

grace and peace,

Monday, March 10, 2008

How Much is that Piggy in the Barn?

One of the curious questions in our home has been "How much do you think the pigs weigh?" Our plan has been to slaughter them around the end of April. I don't mind the pigs, but the smell is starting to get under my nose a bit. Michael has tried to measure them with a string in the past, but the little porkers wouldn't cooperate. Yesterday Michael and Jacob did finally get a measurement

Provide the pig with something to eat and have a string handy. Measure him around his body just behind the front legs. This is his heart girth. Then measure his length from the base of his tail to the middle of his ears. To determine his weight use the following: heart girth times heart girth times length and divide by 400. If the answer is under 150 pounds, add 7 pounds, and that is the hogs weight.

Missy wanted to help "hold" the pig. She had a look on her face as if to say, "And you think I smell bad??"

Our pigs weigh approximately 160 pounds. I am still amazed that they will reach 250 pounds by the end of April. However, they are eating us out of house and home so there is a possibility that they will gain the desired amount of weight between now and then. We will just have to wait and see. The last time we butchered hogs, they were too lean. I couldn't fry sausage or make gravy without adding oil to the pan. This time I want a bit more fat on them. I am willing to wait.
grace and peace,

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Handy Dandy Garden Tool

I planted 2 of my garden beds last weekend. I did a bit of reading to see how far to space the plants. We use the wide row method which means cabbage plants can be placed 10 inches a part. This was painfully close to me so I asked my husband if it was REALLY right. Michael quickly agreed with the book and explained all the reasons why this was a good way to plant.

My husband knows me well and asked me if I wanted him to make me a stick to mark 10 inches and one to mark 12 inches for the broccoli plants. I wanted to be polite and so I smiled and said sure. (In my head I am thinking who REALLY cares if each plant is precisely 10 inches a part. However this is the man that plants his lettuce in alphabetical order so I am sure that preciseness is important to him)! He came back with the following...

Michael cut 2 pieces of PVC pipe one 10 inches and one 12 inches. This was the greatest help in planting. My rows were straighter which made putting the drip tape down much easier. The plants were spaced appropriately, and I realized that I could get a lot of plants in our bed. I got 120 cabbage plants in one bed to be PRECISE. The other great thing was that I also used the PVC pipe to dig the hole for me instead of grabbing a spoon to dig. It also made it easier for my children to help me plant because they knew the exact location of the next hole. It was the only "tool" that I used all day and it did a fantastic job. Best of was FREE!!!!

grace and peace,


Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Hay, Dryers, and Other Fun Things

It is still cold and overcast here today. Michael had to go to town this morning to pick up yet another bale of hay. We noticed that our Jersey cow looks very thin. I don't think she is getting enough to eat. We have been rationing out hay each day, but today he went ahead and put about 1/3 of a bale into the hay ring. This will allow the animals to eat all day as they choose. We are hoping to only have to buy hay one or maybe two more times this year. At $95 a pop, it has been an expensive winter for us. I am thankful that we have had the extra money to be able to handle this expense without having to sell our animals. We are on the home stretch now!! I now have a greater appreciation for the old saying "Make hay while the sun shines!"

Today will be a continuation of cleaning. I didn't get as far as I had hoped yesterday. With all the rain, I decided it was a waste of my time to mop the floors. I will get to that chore today if all goes as planned.

We have been without our dryer working for about a week now. I purchased racks to hang our clothes on to dry. Michael called yesterday to ask me about model number so he could order the parts. He called again to ask me about the small dial on the left hand side of the panel. I told him our dryer didn't have a small dial. He told me that I gave him the wrong model number then because the model number I gave him had a small dial on the left. I went to check it, and to my chagrin there was a small dial on the left of the control panel. I had never used it. I noticed that it was set to "Air Fluff". I turned it back to "Regular", and lo and behold we had heat back in the dryer once again. I felt so stupid and a bit irritated with myself because I had gone to a lot of trouble this past week to dry the clothes. I was thankful that we didn't order all the parts to "fix" the dryer and waste that money. I spent the rest of the day yesterday answering the phone "Small Appliance Repair Shop, how may I help you?"!!!!

Now that I am such an expert on small appliance repairs, next time I will post about the greatest garden tool used for planting. (It really is a great tool and every gardener needs one)!
grace and peace,

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Tueseday Updates

Here is the picture of Hope's Bunny that I have promised to post. The picture isn't near as cute as the real rabbit, but it is hard to make a bunny pose for photos! She weighs about 3 pounds and Hope has really enjoyed her. I had no idea that rabbits had personality, but she does. She prefers Hope over other adults. She will hop to the cage door for Hope to take her out, but when my mom tried to take her out she would run away from the door. This would be the perfect pet for an elderly person who enjoys animals but can't handle a dog or a cat.

It is rainy here today so we will just be doing house cleaning for the day. The outside chores will have to wait until the sunshine returns. Our plants did not get damaged in the wind the other evening. I haven't checked them this morning for wind damage from last night. The temperature was warm enough that we left the plastic off the beds last night. I don't think we will have to cover them back up until tomorrow evening.

grace and peace,

Monday, March 03, 2008

A Weekend of Productivity

The weather was perfect this weekend to head outside and get a few things accomplished so our family did just that. Joshua started the day with tilling 3 garden beds to prepare them for hoops.
Jacob spent some time early in the day cutting PVC pipe. Michael purchased a PVC cutter and that made the job so much faster than using a hack saw.
The boys drove rebar into the ground to attach the pvc to and Michael built the hoops. It is amazing what a little glue will do.
I planted 120 cabbage plants and 90 broccoli plants. Did I mention I have about 90 more broccoli plants and 30 cauliflower plants in the shop to still plant?
The end of the day saw us spreading plastic over the 2 beds. We laid heavy boards all down the front and sides to keep the wind from blowing the plastic. The weather was beautiful, but the moment that Michael cut the first strip of plastic the wind started blowing. I was thinking you gotta be kidding as I was holding with all of my strength not to lose the plastic. When we were finished the wind picked up even more. We spent the night wondering if our plastic was covering our neighbor's house or if it was still were we put it. When we got up this morning. Part of the plastic blew up, but it didn't blow off. I will be checking my plants soon to see if there was any damage.

We also made an order for a hive of bees over the weekend. They should be here in about a month. Prices of bees have really gone up. Michael said maybe we should go into the bee business. (I think NOT)!

Michael also went to the cattle market on Saturday. He didn't purchase anything, but it was a good learning experience. We did call several neighbors asking if they had any black angus steers for sale, but to no avail. Then yesterday afternoon 2 different neighbors called to let us know of a man selling 2 steers. I was amazed at how quickly the neighbors found us a cow. I just wish now they could stop the wind from blowing.

grace and peace,