Friday, April 27, 2012

bizzzzy, bizzzy bees

Well, it seems that each time one item is complete, or one meeting is over, we hear ourselves saying, "Well, now that that's over, things can get back into routine again."  What I've come to realize is that that feeling of anticipated relaxation IS the routine around here.  It has been a couple of the craziest months around here, since Mark and I have met I think.  We seem to have problems saying 'no' to people and word must be getting around because we're getting more requests to do things all the time.   Just a forewarning, if you were thinking of asking one of us to do something anytime soon, don't hold your breath.
As Mark and I stared at the calendar this morning it dawned on us that next week has slowly developed into the perfect storm of activity here at the farm. 115 meat chicks and 15 layer chicks arrive on Tuesday, along with the 14 we've got in the incubator that are due that day (and it's a coincidence, we're not nearly that well organized).  Our two weaner pigs are due to arrive sometime in the week and that involves researching, developing, building and testing out whatever infrastructure we're going with, since this is a TOTALLY new venture for us.   I need to get my lambs weighed off and see who's ready to go to market, if any and start to organize orders.  We need to decide what we're doing with Rhubarb and do something about de-horning. 
The pressure is on to get our manure on the land and although it's still quite early and we need the rain, the wet days seem to add a sense of urgency to things as outdoor jobs are put off 'till the next dry day'.
I've got a hankering to a bigger blog post with pictures and some proper narrative, but as has been the case lately, the blog will likely fall down on the list.  
I'm excited to announce that I got myself a little job for the summer, working with/for my friend Jen in her market garden and greenhouse.  At just two mornings a week most people might not consider it much of a 'job', but I think it will be great for us/me.  

Ah, the wants of a birthday boy calls.  It is so hard to believe that it has been three years already since we brought our little Mark clone into the world.  Happy Birthday Wilson!
I hope this finds you marvelling at the green that follows a spring rain.


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Heaven on (dry) Earth

I wish that I could bottle up these days and bring them out throughout the year, when the bugs are biting, or when the snow is blowing or when the spray tractors are travelling.  The breeze is warm, there are no bugs, the farmers are bustling about and happy to be busy, the sun feels like a long lost friend, the grass is soft underfoot and everything feels like a job well-done.  I had on an old t shirt today and when I took it off to shower tonight I got to enjoy a rainbow of smells and stains ranging from Rosie's cow smell, to hydraulic fluid to soured cream to pulled pork to a clump of mixed chicken feed rolled up in the hem.  The kids' bathwater was opaque and they were asleep before they even heard the spring peepers.
Between the honk of geese, the frogs singing, the last of the leaves blowing into the hedgerows and ditches, the rattle of kids' bike tires and the smell of the earth warming up, it's almost easy to forget that there is a crop to prepare for and that it's way too dry.

Enjoy the sun and celebrate spring, but do a little rain dance when you get the chance.



Wednesday, April 11, 2012


Well, I'm completely nauseous from reading the headlines and hearing the reports of our fantastic federal government's spending/cutting plans that the creative side of my brain is simply dumbfounded, hence the lack of posts.
This whole robo call business has been dwarfed by the tremendous jet fiasco.  My family hated playing crib with me because I count on my fingers and my math leaves much to be desired.  I think, however, that my meagre math skills would likely skunk those of Peter McKay.  "Let's cut all the Environment funding to pave the way for corporate 'development' (read:raping) of our natural resources so that we take all that money we saved and spend it on GI Joes."

I am writing today though, because there is a new noise in our house, sitting not far from where I'm typing.  We have a little experiment going, having just ordered our hens for the year.  Since we have Roosti strutting around, and are able to borrow a little incubator, we're trying our hand at hatching our own eggs. It will be a great trial of experimentation and learning, but if we ever DO get a chick out of it, won't it be fun!?  So we put the first few on today, will candle in a couple days and see what we've got. I've seen Roosti in action, so here's hoping for the best!

Pictures to follow.  It's too nice of a day to be in here any longer.


ps. I passed my minimum skill testing last night at roller derby and so now am an official roller girl!  Well, I still have to do my 25 laps in 5 minutes, but I get to scrimmage and battle it out either way! Whooohoo!  I love this sport, more and more everyday.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Chips, pop, and spent hens.

Last night, the Thursday evening before Good Friday and Easter, our roller derby team held a fundraiser at the local Superstore, bagging groceries.  It cranked out a bunch of cash, which was great, and we had lots of people expressing interest, and of course it was a great time with a super bunch of girls.  What I'm still shocked at this morning is the kind of garbage that people buy to feed their families.  I mean, I know that stuff exists, I see it on the shelves, but there were so many young moms with kids in tow who were buying complete trash, I had a hard time really enjoying myself on those orders.
This sounds so pretentious of me, the organic shopper, who never buys milk, meat or eggs, but there is no excuse to buy Hungry Man TV dinners for children.  There were these wierd things like french fries, but they were made of 'chicken' that were very popular.  And LOTS of french fries and chips.  Lots of chips.  Oh, and Pepsi.  It had to have been on sale, because nearly every order had at least two cases.
And it's Easter, I know.  Family is over, it's a special, celebratory time, and maybe people are 'treating themselves' with some real 'indulgences', but that's not the impression I got.
It just proved further, that people are not paying enough for food.  A $12 bag of 'chicken french fries'  is absolutely ridiculous.  That's a spent laying hen battered in some highly subsidized GMO oils.  GET TO KNOW YOUR FOOD!

In other news, it is a beautiful, sunny Good Friday here and although we do really need some rain, I am off to enjoy the rays.  Then I'll nuke a Hungry Man for the kids for lunch, text on my unnecessary iPhone, watch some satellite TV soap opera, book a trip on credit and complain a lot about the cost of food.  And then, I'll be SURE to use the self-checkout next time so the self-righteous bagger can't judge my choices .  haha!