Thursday, June 19, 2014

The Beat Goes On...

My apologies for my reprieve from the blog. So many things pulling in so many directions, it was the blog that took a back seat. Since all comment posts go straight to my cell phone, I noticed yesterday that two of my three readers were asking where I had gone. ;-)

This is one of our mystery trees in the front yard.
My homesteading plans have been paused as I contemplate what I should do as a renter. I hestitate to plant gardens and build rain catchment systems because I had high hopes we would find our own property by the end of our first lease. That lease is already coming up fast (November) and it looks like we'll be renewing for another year.

I just don't see much point in establishing something that we might be walking away from in the next 12 months. But the itch to be self sufficient is starting to override my caution. I've begun to care for the trees in the front yard which I was told "should be" fruit producers but have never born  fruit in the past because prior renters/owners weren't interested in  taking care of them. Finally, one day, I couldn't stand it anymore. Two trees were practically laying on the ground. I placed them upright and packed the soil around them, securing one tree with rope to the nearby fence.

Mystery tree
I plan to place a rain barrel at the end of the row of trees and run a drip line along them all...allowing for water to slowly seep from small holes situated adjacent to each tree. Perhaps I'll post some pictures of the struggling trees to see if anyone an tell me what they are or what they might produce if nurtured properly.

The chickens finally started to give eggs after Easter. We enjoy the fresh eggs so much that we have purchased five more chicks and have started to raise them. That will be a total of nine layers and one rooster. One, oddly enough, keeps laying giant eggs that has two yokes. I wish we had about twenty layers so I could eat eggs every day.

We have decided, as a family, we'd really like a pig but until we get our own place, it won't be allowed. We're on the fence about two goats for milk when we get our own place. Knowing they would have to be milked twice a day isn't something we're sure we could do just yet. But having the milk would sure come in handy since the girls are drinking a minimum of one gallon per day.

The unabashed selfie at work.
Speaking of the girls, they are all doing fine. Summer break is upon us and they are glad to be out of school. Working is going great and I feel like I finally have a handle on my work duties. My department is performing at award winning levels (literally) and everyone seems pleased with their boss (me).

Macky and I have begun to exercise regularly. I'm down almost 20 pounds and Mack about six. Being in good health, at least for me, is hard to focus on when you have large traumatic events occuring (house fire, whooping cough, dog attack, any other unmentionables.) But I am happy to say that our lives have smoothed out and we can now get back to focusing on our QUALITY of life rather just surviving the next week.



Anonymous said...

OJD is back baby!! Glad to hear you and your clan are well.

Warlock Sundance said...

You just keep doing what ya gotta do....Always good to hear you and the gang are still doing well.

Anonymous said...

Welcome back OJD! Glad to hear you and yours are still alive and well.

Andrea said...

So happy you're back. We're experiencing similar things as your family. Except we own our little slice of heaven. However, we live in AZ for 7 months a year and then travel to the 'new' farm in WI for five months. We bought raw land, 23 acres, with trout stream, fishing hole (4 acres) and swimming hole in the front. We have a small 1100 square foot Northland building we live in in the summer (it's quite lovely with granite counter tops, stainless steel, stamped concrete floors down and wide pine plank flooring up) and it has a 3 season porch that is the gathering center and a small 1 1/2 car garage which stores 1 car and all the garden items. We have built a 3000 square feet shop which has a big garage area, shop area, storeroom for our preps and a full bathroom downstairs. The upstairs (bunk house for the grandkids and overflow guests) has to be finished yet. It is heated and cooled (grandpa wanted that and we can heat/cool on zones so our preps are always cool). We have two full RV hook ups and well, it's just great. We bought the land and I was diagnosed with cancer. Eldest son insisted on taking over the completion and proceeded to betray us in every way possible and then decided to sue us for the farm. (It's complicated story, but anyone can sue and even though he didn't succeed in his efforts, it has cost us thousands and thousands to defend ourselves) There have been other big happenings and we don't know if we can, at our age, take care of this place. In theory, a number of our children were excited about this place and agreed to help. It hasn't turned out that way. They are happy it's there in case of a collapse, but they don't want to take the time to help out. So we are wondering if we should sell (difficult in a rural area and we would lose a lot of money) or forge ahead, knowing we still have the ability to do what is needed, providing we move slowly... It's a tough decision. We keep on keeping on and reading your blog, and others is informative and help keep us focused. For now, we are organizing and finishing what was left unfinished and fixing what eldest son neglected. I realize I want to stay as I pictured the garden and the flowers around the house and shop... The clothesline, heck I bought a sweet old butter churn in town yesterday for a song. Your blog and others help keep us focused and encourage us. Long comment to say thank you for sharing.

Jay Ater said...

I were getting a bit concerned and am really glad that your return was marked with a "normal" post and not something to do with spontaneous combustion or other forms of destruction.

Keep on Truckin!

K said...

Glad to see a new post from you, and especially that things are going well. Perhaps, a few preps that can be easily dismantled for the rented homestead?

Tombstone Livestock said...

Your tree looks like a peach tree, and could use spraying for peach leaf curl, your local nursery should be able to help you.

Eileen said...

That was my garden dilemma this year. We would like to move to the country. We finally can this year, with some health issues resolved. So plant our small city plots like we are staying, or try to spruce everything up for moving? I planted as though we are staying. Hope you find some ways to feel sufficient where you are since you will be there another year. Part of the process is in the learning, as much as the end result. Do you have a garden space at the rental? Can you have a few pots of plants? So great to hear from you.

Mary in GA said...

Glad you're back and things are going well at home and work. I agree with what Eileen said. Learning is part of the process, so it's important. Have you ever heard of columnar apple trees? (I think there are pears too). People grow them in pots on porches and patios. Look into them when you get a chance, they could provide you with a small moveable orchard. Again, welcome back!

Miss M said...

Glad you're back! I was hoping everything was alright!

Though now I guess my excuse for not posting to my blog is gone. You've posted, so I guess I'd better go post now. LOL

It's not like I don't have anything to talk about. It's that I have too much, and don't have time to talk about it.

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