Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Farmer's Life

On September 20th we finally closed on our home in the country. We now have 25.9 acres (mostly timber) that our children can finally be themselves on. They can play guns & not frighten the neighbors. They can build a fort, a tree house & a chicken coop (which they have) without getting a building permit & upsetting the neighbors. Sage can get up at 545am & go outside & sing to the stars & dog without disturbing the neighbors (well, the deer haven't complained yet) They can play football & baseball & basketball during school hours if they want to. They can pretend to be spies in the forest or trackers or explorers or whatever. They can have animals & watch birds & find wildlife outside our windows. So far, this has been all we've dreamed it would be. I might change my mind towards winter when I'm snowed in for too long with 6 squirrely kids but for now it sounds perfect. The only parts that annoy me now are the incessant flies & the grass/dirt tracked in by children that forget to remove their shoes or just plain don't wear shoes outside. 

OK actually I thought of one more thing. The neighbor's dog is a blue healer & he ate one of my chickens. I'm a little frustrated with him because he put 2 holes in my fence & he barred his teeth at me when I tried to get him away from the chickens. I think I might take the advice of some friends and use some pepper spray on him because he thinks he lives here & never leaves!

Jeremy & I are having fun working together on the farm though. We did build a rather big chicken coop completely out of pallets. We saw a youtube video on how to do it & we ran with it. It took us longer than the 2 days that it took the guy in the video but I like to work with Jeremy. One of the things that attracted me to him when we were dating was going to his grandparents' farm to work with him. Now I get to do it again...if I can get the kids to watch the babies long enough. The latest is that Jeremy put a solar panel up on the wall of the coop that will power the RV batteries that will allow my chickens to have enough light in the coop so that they will lay eggs all winter. It will also allow me or the kids to see when we have to clean out the coop on those dark winter days that are coming soon. I did make the fence for the run all by myself while he was at work. I'm kinda proud of it but not too much. I learned to use the table saw, reciprocating saw, saw-za, nail guns, staple guns, how to shingle & put up siding. 

So, next spring we hope to put up some sort of barn or Morton Bldg so that we can get some goats, a cow, maybe a couple of sheep...who knows. Of course, Jeremy will have his great big garden which means that I will be weeding & canning like crazy.We didn't get very many pickles this year because of all the deer & coons eating the cucs at our satellite garden. Hopefully the deer will stay away from the house where we put the garden. (We have seen about 15 deer all at once about 500yds from the house)

I did meet our neighbor to the east the other day. He's the one who has the blue healer. I was taking the dog back to his house to tell the neighbor that Jack was growling at Corbin. I stood on the porch after ringing the door bell. I was angry otherwise I never would be in that confrontational position in a million years. Well after waiting a couple of minutes I turn to leave when the door opens & out pops a man wearing a towel. Well, I don't have have to tell you that I was embarrassed. I looked up & to the side cause he wanted to introduce himself & I wanted to leave but I was now in this mess. I quickly explained that Jack was growling & please keep the dog over at his house & exited quickly as Mr Ted came outside in his towel to put the dog in the garage. Now, the previous owners told us that the dog never came over to their house & the neighbors liked to keep to themselves but that dog hasn't left since we moved in & Mr Ted honks at me as he drives away & he's come over 4 times in the 4 wks we've been here...the dog was back in 4 hrs & had busted a hole in their garage door to get back to my house. Honestly!

The other exciting parts to our day have included watching the combine across the road, watching the road scraper & then the dump truck putting new dirt on the road, watching the birds & deer, listening to the pack of coyotes that live in our timber, playing in the hot tub, finding a snake, avoiding the bugs, & helping Jeremy with all his projects that he constantly has going.

We did get a dog named Buzz Lightyear. A man in our church has been training labs for hunting for 30years & we asked him if he had an adult dog that we could have. He thought for a little bit & came up with a plan. Buzz is a pheasant dog. He's one of the best but he only really gets out to hunt a couple weekends a year & the rest of the time he's bored. So, we are now co-owners of Buzz. Mr Amensen gets him to go hunting & we get him the rest of the time. Perfect for me, as we get a highly trained dog that I don't have to worry about with my kids & he stays outside all the time. The kids can't wait for Mr Amensen to have some puppies in the spring because we get to go play with them & Sage REALLY wants a puppy.

One of the best things about our acreage is the effect it has on Brody. Since we've moved here he's been calmer & better able to handle life. He can calm himself by going outside & running or walking & I don't really have to worry about him getting hurt.It's not been perfect but it is better.

I guess that's about it for now.