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Farm Life

''Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself, do not go out and look for a successful personality and duplicate it.''
-Bruce Lee
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Spiritwind
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Re: Farm Life

Postby Spiritwind » Sat Aug 18, 2018 3:48 pm

I haven’t been inclined to write much here lately. The summer has kind of been on slow, for several reasons. One, the smoke is so thick that it’s not even a good idea to do a lot of outdoor physical work right now, so I haven’t even been taking the goats out. They tend to get pretty excited and run a lot, so I keep looking for the day I can actually see farther than the nearest trees. It starts to clear up, then more smoke rolls in.

The other thing is having our smaller generator stolen a few months ago has really put the crimp on things. The money we’ve spent on gasoline to run the bigger generator would have been enough to buy several of them. And, since it was so hot for awhile we had to run it a lot to keep everything watered up. We’ve figured out how to cut back on that, and won’t be caught with our pants down next summer, but a lot of the plans we had for this summer will probably not come to pass. Kind of a big disappointment, and hard not to still be angry about getting robbed. I kept trying to get by on our previous budget for gas, and no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn’t make it work. Which meant we couldn’t even save up the money to buy a new one. Had a class I was supposed to teach, which would have helped, but, alas, that possibility seems to have vanished into thin air too. Big sigh.

A few things to appreciate, despite the rather unabating challenges we continue to face in regards to that quest for more evil greenbacks, is goat babies coming in about a week or so, and the corn that we are beginning to harvest and eat from our own garden (super yummy I must say!). And I’ve never grown such big beautiful buttercup squashes. I’ll take pictures of them soon. Since it’s starting to cool down a bit, as long as I keep them well watered we should also get a bumper crop of raspberries. Of course, the kittens are delightful to have around too. They are doing very well acclimating to their environment and I pretty much don’t have to worry about them any more. They’re entertaining as all heck.

I wouldn’t mind a good rain, which we haven’t had in a couple months. There isn’t quite as much dust this year, since I’ve been watering up even the weeds, and the ground has settled more from being disturbed last year. Still pretty dusty though. Everything outside the areas that we water is bone dry. Can’t even safely use a chainsaw right now. All kinds of activity in the heavily watered areas though. I’ve even let a few things just flower and go to seed that the bees seem to love. There are more this year than last, and I take that as a good sign. Quite a few frogs too. And Zoey caught and killed a garter snake a little over a week ago. Which reminds me of a disgusting surprise I found in the barn the other day. I took a peak at the water bucket in the barn and found two dead mice in it, to my surprise. I wanted to leave it for my husband to deal with, but my conscience got the best of me so I went ahead and tossed them out and sterilized the bucket. Pretty gross, though. I’m going to try and muck out the barn today to get it ready for birthing time. That should be good and dusty.

I did go to this months Herbal Guild meeting and learned a whole bunch of stuff about the various varieties of sage and it’s medicinal qualities. I’m going to work on a post for the Plant Spirit Medicine thread next. I have long appreciated herbs, but am always surprised at how much I don’t know, and how many applications they really have. The woman who was sharing information told about going to an event where it was pretty primitive and you couldn’t just wash your hands like you normally would, and everyone you meet wants to shake your hand. She said there was a huge problem with dysentery, and that she avoided it by keeping a leaf of sage in her cheek at all times. I thought that was pretty cool.

I know, it’s pretty boring this time. I’m actually have trouble just staying awake sometimes, as it seems the constant combination of fine dust and smoke in the air has affected my brain and respiratory system. It’s like I’m not quite all there. Hopefully I’ll be able to shake this off soon, and feel a little more energized. We certainly have a lot of work ahead of us, and it would be nice to not feel like I’m dragging myself around.

Two other things on my mind I think I will post about in “This Week in Review” if I have time, and that is about the big win against Monsanto, and the big news about all the pedophile priests in Pennsylvania. The rats are coming out of the wood work lately, it seems. I hope the trend continues, as it’s about time a little truth prevailed.
May the song from within come forth, Expressing itself as it may
With nary a thought or worry, For how else to spend the day
- by Me : )

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Re: Farm Life

Postby Spiritwind » Mon Aug 27, 2018 3:56 pm

Sometimes I am reminded about how writing, for me anyway, takes a bit of discipline. It’s easy and flows readily on some days, and others I just have to make a determination to put words together, nowadays on a computer screen rather than paper. Today is one of the latter. The animals still need to be fed, except the horse. Don’t want her getting antsy and deciding to break out again (she did twice last week, but I’ll write more about that later). And I’m hungry, but that can wait too. And, the big news is IT’S RAINING! It sprinkled some yesterday, and smelled so good, and now it’s rained enough that it actually got everything wet. No puddles yet, but I was doing some serious visualization of it raining and big puddles forming this last week, and I know I wasn’t the only one. Yippie!

We even had to start a fire in the wood stove last night and this morning, which is unusual for August, even late August. So glad to have it though! As anyone following along here knows, we got our generator stolen a few months ago, and it has affected us more than we thought it would. Four months in a row I had saved money to get the horse's hooves trimmed. I’m kind of lucky that the guy who did it last trimmed them a bit short and hers don’t grow that fast. But still, the fact remains that for four months the money ended up going into the big generator’s gas tank just to keep us going. So, when we woke up to Freckles being out this last Thursday, tearing up the only bale of hay I had and getting into the heavy bag of grain I had been unable to put away, I didn’t take it well.

I always wonder if I should be so honest, because a lot of people only want to hear good news, or unending optimism. I still have unending optimism, but I did have a day of feeling greatly at odds with myself, tremendous guilt over the horse, and generally at odds with the world. In short, I had a meltdown, and had thoughts flowing through my brain that were not welcome, and an emotional roller coaster ride that nowadays is very rare. Now, maybe there are some near perfect folks out there, that never have days like this, but I don’t know any, and some only hide it very well. And I usually don’t reach out past my husband and my neighbor.

But my general direction is towards truth, no matter how unpopular or inconvenient. So I did choose to reach out, and share my real state of being this time, with someone I trusted. Trust and truth, they kind of go hand in hand. And I admit, I am a work in progress, in a very topsy turvy world. I can love myself, and forgive myself, though, for being perfectly imperfect. By strengthening these muscles of truth, self love, and forgiveness, while at the same time not being afraid to take a good look at myself, has been priceless, and that’s why I talk about it. For those are often the issues laying just under the surface, in any upset. And if you can’t do it for yourself, it’s unlikely you will do it well for others.

So the horse ended up being a catalyst for several different things. One, is we bit the bullet and bought a generator of a different make from somewhere else, rather than sticking to the one that was remaining elusively out of reach. It’s on it’s way here, and though it was a bit of a stretch for us, I feel so much better knowing that we took action to improve our situation. Patience is a virtue, but sometimes action is the answer, and deciding not to wait anymore for the solution to just come to you. I am also taking some time to think deeply about our future, what with the weather becoming more erratic, ginormous fires that won’t go out everywhere all summer long, and hay getting harder to get. Haven’t made any hard fast decisions yet, but it’s all being considered.

And, on Tuesday I did go to the Talking Circle again. My hearing is a real problem, and especially in the building where this gathering takes place. The ceiling is very high, and there is a loud fan that blows continuously in the background. Even with hearing aids I could not hear the people across the room from me, and that was even with letting everyone know of my hearing problem. I thought, maybe next time I’ll just move around the room and make everyone move, like musical chairs, so I can sit next to who ever is speaking. Just kidding, but it is frustrating. What I did hear was outstanding though, and with each speaker you could feel the energy in the room getting stronger. There is just something about speaking from the heart that is so powerful. And once again, I don’t even remember what I said, really. I know I got quite passionate.

Interestingly, an announcement was made about a commemoration event taking place on September 9th, the 160 year anniversary of a horse massacre that took place, where 700-1000 horses belonging to surrounding tribes were rounded up and slaughtered. This was done to completely demoralize and cripple the tribes autonomy, which it did very effectively. They are going to erect a peace pole commemorated to this event, with a saying inscribed in 4 languages, on the sight where this occurred. I wasn’t going to go because, well, I hate to leave home really, and was wanting to conserve on gas. It’s in the late afternoon on my husband’s day off. On the second day of Freckles getting out I kept coming back to this event, and felt into more deeply, and made a decision to attend. Interestingly enough, Freckles did not get out the next day or since, even though the electric fence was off, and my neighbor and my husband both said they would go with me. So, I guess we need to be there.

Not wanting to write a book here, but one other important event took place, and that is Danae had two beautiful doelings early Friday morning, the second morning Freckles got out, and they were two days early than the earliest date expected! It was an exciting day. I noticed that one of them kept kind of standing apart, which is unusual, with her back kind of hunched and looking cold. It has dramatically cooled down, but normally if they are full term it shouldn’t have been too cold for them, but decided to put little coats on them anyway. I spent a lot of time with her, over the next two days, making sure she was nursing well, and just generally paying more attention to her. They are both doing fine now, being active little goaties, as they should be.

And I did go to the local monthly drumming event that is not too far from where I live yesterday. All of these circles that continue to meet in this way, as I said yesterday when my turn to speak came around, are restoring the hoop, are creating potential new life and radiating energy that supports life, and a strong life affirming sense of community. Maybe that name I chose all those years ago, when I participated in becoming an ordained minister with the SHE’S organization (Spiritual Healers and Earth Stewards) wasn’t so lame after all. I remember my surprise when they said we had to choose a name for our ministry. I was just wanting a little out for working with Reiki under the umbrella of spiritual healing, and had not given any thought to a name, or indeed even wanting to start my own ministry. So I asked Spirit at the time, what name should I choose, and I got very clearly “Creating the Circle of Light and Love”. I questioned it, thinking “really, is that the best you can do”, LOL. Yes, sometimes I am a doubting Thomas.

One last thing is just a mention about how ecstatic I am to be eating out of our own garden. To me, a beautiful lush green garden, with lots of various bees and insects flying around pollinating everything, is magical. It’s one of life’s greatest gifts there is, in my mind.

Image
Two of the almost dozen buttercups squash. These both came out of the corn patch and are considerably bigger than the ones I grew elsewhere. The bigger one is at least 20 pounds. I was delighted and shocked!
May the song from within come forth, Expressing itself as it may
With nary a thought or worry, For how else to spend the day
- by Me : )

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Re: Farm Life

Postby Spiritwind » Wed Sep 05, 2018 4:43 pm

I saw one of the funniest things I have ever seen the goats do the other day. I watched Arrow lay down, as if to scratch herself in some place hard to reach, and instead saw her start licking and nursing off her own teat! I’ve heard of them doing this before, but never seen it happen. For some reason I found it immensely amusing.

And though it seems like we are having an early fall, I hear we’re slated for warmer than usual temperatures, so may be a while yet to put the garden to bed for the winter. We got about 60 ears of corn. Not bad for a tiny little patch. The buttercup squash are still going strong. And I truly wish I could clone myself.

I would love nothing more than to grow most of our food, but not sure if there is enough of me to go around. It’s tiring, though, to have to constantly worry about whether the food I am buying at the store is GMO, full of glysophate, and a large range of other toxic ingredients. I still can’t believe it has come to this, having been raised on a farm with old fashioned home grown untainted healthy produce as a kid.

And the ever growing fear of fire. We got a questionnaire in the mail the other day, wanting to know what actions we would take in case of a fire. I might have mentioned this before, but in light of the current plan to depopulate rural areas and drive everyone into the city, it’s no small matter, really. If there were big fires bearing down on our location, in our rather remote area, not sure we could do more than get all the animals out to safety, and if we’re lucky pull our RV out so we still have a roof over our head. We still have the sailboat, but couldn’t fit many goats on board, let alone the horse.

In fact, I think my husband plans to build a mast raising system and put it up for sale next year so we can afford to make the improvements we want to make, and get ourselves a bit better situated. Makes me kind of sad, though, as I really loved sailing. But the time for that seems to have passed us by in life, and I only see a lot of work ahead for us. I’m not complaining, though. I just wish people would wake up and start to see what unfortunately too few of us see, yet. I’m not holding my breath for that to happen, though.

In fact, it does make me kind of sad, for I know if we were to rise up en masse things could change for the better, quite quickly. But, they’ve done a pretty good job with their brainwashing everyone into just keeping their head down, as if they can’t see what is so plain, at least for me, to see. If wishes were horse then beggars would ride...

Anyway, not much to say today. Gearing up to get wood in, pens cleaned, and as much hay in as possible. There is a lot going on outside of farm life, a coming together of sorts, with various circles of good people, so there is hope. Yes, I am a doubting Thomas sometimes, as I have stated before. I know the big SHE has a plan, just like those anti-life forces do, and I know I need to keep the faith. But I can’t honestly say it’s easy all the time. My eyes well up with tears, in fact, when I allow myself to feel into all the unnecessary destruction of our forests, water sheds, and wildlife areas that has been going on, non-stop, for these past many years. It does make my heart hurt a bit. But, can’t stay in that place. No, I must pull myself together, snap out of it, and renew my faith in that which cannot be fully seen yet. No time to be getting weak in the knees, for sure.

And that is our task, for some of us. To know what we know, but just keep going anyway. With love for all life.....
May the song from within come forth, Expressing itself as it may
With nary a thought or worry, For how else to spend the day
- by Me : )

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Re: Farm Life

Postby Spiritwind » Sat Sep 15, 2018 3:46 pm

It’s been hard to write here, lately, as much that is not about farm life has been on the front seat of my life. As I mentioned in another thread, I attended the horse massacre commemoration event recently, and then right after that had to appear as a witness in Superior Court in the next county over for two days in a row. For anyone following this thread, you will remember that almost a year ago, in October, my husband and I accompanied a good friend to her rural property up near the Canadian border, and were both mildly assaulted by one of the individuals with whom she was going through legal motions to remove from her property. She is actually still trying to get them off of there, with the primary individual having done everything imaginable to delay, obfuscate, and confound an already cumbersome and ineffective legal system.

This individual went through five separate attorneys over the past year, and even went so far as to have a sudden health problem and just left the court. I was also quite surprised that there really was film in that camera and that this person actually turned it over to the prosecution, as evidence, that actually was quite damning, for him. Anyway, the court trial went ahead without him, and we were quite delighted that after two days of a long drive, that should have been one, the jury came back with a guilty verdict. Of course, it will probably be appealed, but at least it can’t hurt our friends case who is still trying to have them removed. It was my first time being on a witness stand, and definitely had the flavor of being on the hot seat, but I’m happy we followed through. This is how bullies get such an inflated view of themselves, for so many won’t stand up to them.

Anyway, onto farm life. We currently have 16 goats, 3 bucks, 10 does, and 3 kids. It’s almost time to start breeding, and I plan to breed 6 of the does this fall. Danae, the one that just kidded three weeks ago, has not shown any signs of infection, so I’m guessing that the change in feed, from GMO to non-GMO has indeed been a good move. I did not want to breed again until I was able to make the switch. And, when I went to have the two little doelings de-horned last week I found out that a place that sold grain and went out of business last year has reopened and is now an outlet for another feed store that sells non-GMO grain. It’s only 15 miles away! A lot better than having to make an hour and a half drive each way in the winter to get grain!

It’s going to be tough next spring, as I will have to make some hard decisions about who to sell, and who to keep. It’s easier for me to sell the babies, because I haven’t formed as much of an attachment to them. But this year, with Danae’s two girls, I don’t want to sell either one of them. They are friendly, very nice looking, and so I’m just going to ride with it awhile. And even though I should sell Arrow and her daughter, I need to really work on her kid, to friendly her up. At present she is a little stinker. Arrow has come a long way though. While not what I would call friendly, she at least will eat out of my hand and I can sort of pet her. Her daughter is another story altogether. But she’s young, so it will just take a little work. It’s much harder to sell them when they are wild, understandably so. But I’ve gotten so much milk out of Arrow’s mother all summer that it’s been worth it. And, I made money off their other kids.

Part of my problem with selling them now, is I not only don’t want to sell them to be eaten, I don’t want to sell them to people who vaccinate and plan to buy commercial feed from their local feed store. It feels kind of like a death sentence. And pretty much all of the goat keepers I know who have more just just a couple animals have made a point of buying non-GMO grain. So more people have figured this out than I would have thought.

And now I’m working on trying to find affordable (key word there!) non-GMO dry dog food. My jaw hangs open when I look at the prices, and the sheer variety of different brands is overwhelming. If I had a freezer and more solar power I could probably get raw meat to give them, which is closer to what they used to eat back in the day. Two Great Pyrenees go through quite a bit of dog food, and even more when the temperatures start to drop, which they have. So paying $50 on up for 30 - 40 pounds of dog food is not even a possibility right now. Plus I give them some canned food. But I’ve just started looking into this and may at least be able to compromise and do a mixture, which would be an improvement. That’s how they’ve made it for us, though. It’s all about the money. I spent a few days being kind of mad about it too, since it’s affected my health, the goats health, and the dogs health. It doesn’t do any good to stay there, though.

If you ever watched the Kill Bill movies then you know who Uma Thurman is. I was curious about her, so looked her up on google and found out her full name was Uma Karuna Thurman. I thought that was kind of funny, and, as I’m always looking for original names for the goats I decided to name Danae’s two little doelings Uma and Karuna. Both names have kind of cool meanings, and they are just as cute as any two little goats can be. I catch them all the time playing with the kittens. I never seem to have a camera handy though. Too bad. Pretty funny to watch them try to play together, because goats like to head butt and the kittens are like, no! But they seem to like hanging out together.

We’ve thought a lot about ways to improve our situation, although it’s not that bad now. We do have a lot to do this fall since we were stalled this summer for four months, but some things will have to put off until next year. We’ve come to terms, though, and are ecstatic about how much less gas we are using. Huge difference! I keep putting it out to the universe that I’d like to attract into our life someone with a fully self contained RV that wants to live such a strange alternative lifestyle, and exchange about 10 hours a week helping make improvements here in exchange for rent. I won’t take out an ad, though, since the danger of attracting the wrong person/people is exceptionally high. I don’t want any additional drama in my life, and there seems to be so few well adjusted people out there. But, it could happen. We did have a guy last year stay a few days that would have been perfect, but he likes to keep on the move according to the seasons. Winter up here is not exactly a walk in the park, and only for the very hardy in spirit.

Every day though I am thankful to be out here. I don’t do city well anymore. And even just being around a lot of people these days makes me feel exhausted. To keep my energy up I do much better spending a lot of time alone with all the wild things. I started taking the food grade diatomaceous earth I buy for the horse myself here in the last couple days. I bought a 10lb bag this time. It has all kinds of health benefits, some which might help me out quite a bit. I’ve noticed as I get older it seems more difficult to start new habits. But gotta do it. In fact, when we first started using the composting toilet we used to overfill the pee bucket all the time. It’s like we had to train our subconscious to remember, so it became a habit, and we finally did. It’s like it becomes a sixth sense, your subconscious mind. I think that’s why it’s important to look at what’s in there. It can become like an overstuffed closet that has stuff fall out when you open it, and it’s common to find that much of it should just be thrown out.

It does feel like time just flies by these days. Like summer this year. Where did it go?! I don’t really mind getting older. But my husband and I talk all the time about how in our mind we are still planning our activities at the same pace as we used to be able to go, and find we just can’t pull it off anymore. That is the number one hardest thing, for us, to accept about growing older. We are working on doing it more gracefully, but have a ways to go there. The trick is learning to work smarter, and not harder. Anyway, beautiful fall day out, and everyone is used to me getting out there earlier, so gotta get going. Surprised myself after all, writing as much as I have.

And, even though it’s not all exactly as I would wish all the time, it’s a good day to be alive. In divine love for all, I bid you adieu.
May the song from within come forth, Expressing itself as it may
With nary a thought or worry, For how else to spend the day
- by Me : )


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