Spring Parallels (renewal and poems)

Whenever there is nothing to say.  When words and emotions get in each other’s way.  When posts about farming elude my mind, a poem can speak what I cannot find. Snowy winter hath been too long.  ‘Twas difficult to find my way through. Spring hides and winks a subtle eye before she will come into view….

Keeping Chickens Safe From Predators

It looked like an Alfred Hitchcock movie in there.  I may have acted too quickly.  I saw that Ethel was bleeding from the top of her head and quickly put her in the bathroom.  The freshly painted bathroom.  Ethel shook her head.  Oh my, there was blood everywhere!  I then moved her to a kennel. …

The Inspirational (and Inspired) Life

I was always fascinated by grandma’s bay window of plants and her rose bushes.  Of Aunt Donna’s heavy laden apple tree, grape vine, flowering bushes, and crisp rhubarb.  I wonder if they know how much they inspired me and that I am a farmer today because of their memories on the farm they grew up on…

Creating a Beautiful Tea Garden

Creating a beautiful tea garden this year will not only bring great happiness, but also provide free medicine in the garden, help feed the bees and butterflies, and can be grown anywhere from an apartment balcony to a forty acre parcel. Herbs don’t require a lot of water once they are established so they can survive…

A Comical Goat Nursery

My dear friend, Jill, has to move.  She is devastated that she had to give up her goats.  She trusts us to spoil our goats and entrusted us with her “baby”, a large registered Saanen who yesterday gave us a gallon of  milk without kicking or sitting in the bucket.  Oh happy day.  Dear Katrina…

Cohabitating Homesteads

I wonder if most folks, when envisioning a homestead, imagine a house, barn, outbuildings, land fenced in, and only themselves and possibly their children living there.  We have for years.  That quest is becoming harder and harder to achieve with land prices skyrocketing and the economy the way it is; a lot of us were…

My Favorite Easy To Grow Flowers

When approaching Great Grandma’s house after school, the riotous red geraniums greeted me first.  Their clusters of happy petals waving softly in the breeze.  Geraniums equaled Great Grandma’s house.  Geraniums are synonymous with large glasses of iced tea and hours of playing rummy. In my books about the Italian countryside the open windows of the…

Goats: Leave on Mom or Bottle Feed?

Starting out I watch my friends, read books, ask questions, then try to make my own way.  Whether to leave the baby on the mother or bottle feed was no exception. Friend #1 takes the baby from the mother immediately.  She gives the baby bottles of colostrum for a few days then off they go…

The Can’t Do It All Homestead

At the beginning of this venture, I truly believed that Doug and I would be able to learn, complete, and excel at every  homesteading skill.  We could be self sufficient!  We don’t need nobody.  We would be so busy chopping wood and weaving clothes, sheesh, we’d do even more than the pioneers!  We’d learn everything…

Goat Playing Piano

On Sunday morning, as we cried for Loretta, a baby was being born.  One of Jill’s does gave birth to twins.  Olaf and Elsa are half Alpine, half Saanen, pure white with tiny waddles under their chin.  We brought home Elsa yesterday. She is not quite solid on her feet yet.  She looks like Bambi…