Sunday, February 22, 2015

Lift off!

We have lift off, folks. I was going to do it last weekend, but the damn snOMG 2105 screwed all that up. And I was freaking out because I didn't want to plant seed trays only to have them reach -3 Fahrenheit in an un-insulated shed, but I didn't want to keep the lights on 24/7 to keep the trays warm enough..... duh. Idiot. We're not living in it yet, but we (more or less) have a HEATED HOUSE. Idiot.

So this weekend.... I planted (what will be) our garden.

I feel so very (overly) organized this year. I used a planner and planned both the back garden with raised beds and the meadow garden with rows. I calculated the numbers of each plant that I want. I tried to put friends with each other and keep plant enemies separated. I incorporated pollinator and pest attracting flowers in the plans. I got soaker hoses for the blueberries (they have been in my car for a week now, and will continue to rattle around in there most likely until our first drought-like conditions, thankyouverymuch). I am prepared. I hope I don't fuck it up.

Planning his own garden. Or world domination. Or just destroying a new notebook we (thought we'd) hid



Ta da!!!

Monday, February 09, 2015

Blink and You'll Miss It there went that plan. It really does seem that farmsteading, and life these days in general, is all about taking a giant leap forward, and then getting knocked several steps back. It's frustrating, it's annoying, it's heartbreaking, and the few victories that you have (however brief) are so addicting you go back for more. In this day and age it would be easy enough to hide my head in the sand and not do ANY of this. No garden, no chickens, no rabbits, no house building... just do what 99% of our countrymen and women do - work, pay rent, watch TV, sleep, rinse, wash, repeat....

But I can't. I'd be miserable. I have been miserable without my garden DESPITE my being preoccupied with being pregnant, giving birth, and not sleeping taking care of my baby. I've been miserable not PRODUCING anything here off the property, so I have chickens, a rabbit and will put in the garden this year. All is peachy.

Except this morning, when I went to check on the rabbit and chickens in the pre-dawn gloom... no bunny. Wide gaping hole in the side of the pen, and a few tufts of fur. I'll save you the gory details, but it wasn't our dogs, although it was something comparable in size and potentially smarter. (Sorry guys)

Got back to down where our dogs are, and the wall of skunk smell hit me. Looks like Luke got skunked, although it's still fresh enough it could be either of them - you can't tell. And then I saw a small body in the driveway behind my car. Obviously my first thought was that it was the bunny and something and dragged her 1000ft down the driveway and left her behind my car. Upon closer inspection, it was a possum. I sat and tried to tell in the light of the flashlight on my iPhone whether it was dead or just playing dead.... it was dead. No idea by what. Dogs won't go near it, but Zora is walking very stiffly this morning which usually means she ran hard the previous day. her poor old arthritic bones can only take so much....

We will rebuild and try again. I feel terrible about the rabbit. It is so easy to get lulled into a false sense of safety... we've been so lucky so far. The only animal massacre we've had was in broad daylight when a fox (we think) got several of our chickens and our poor dogs were tied up and couldn't get to them... and our chickens have always been secure in their coop. But just because they have been safe doesn't mean they ARE safe. We will persevere. Lesson learned.

Saturday, February 07, 2015

Close Encounters of the Third Kind

Thank you for indulging me last time. I really did rant, but I really did need to. Sometimes if I don't let it get to a boiling point, I don't do it. I know. But I learned to procrastinate at one of the BEST schools ever.


But I'm excited. Progress is being made. I can cross #3 OFF my 2015 to do list!
 And it's only February! FUCK YEAH!!

A THIRD kind of animal has taken up residence here at Stoneyhaw - The Rabbit. She is a (just shy of a) year-old French/German Angora Rabbit. However, I noticed today in the daylight that her ear has a breeder's tattoo, so I might see if I can find out any further background info on her. She's a very warm light brown, with grey guard hair. She looks like she needs to be groomed soon...

The meat/fiber production adventure has begun.

We still owe her a box/shelf/shelter, but the tote will have to suffice for today. I wish we had something more substantial than chicken wire for the 'walls', but feeling good about the hardware cloth underneath the bunny butt, so that's a start.

And she needs a proper name...

Bunny feet!

"You assholes better finish my palace soon..."

THIS was NOT the agreement

Inspected by the Chicken Mafia. Bunny doesn't even flinch.

Tub is temporary. Bunny is pissed...

She found a way, despite inadequate 'shelter'