Tuesday, November 13, 2012


Yes.  I'm into creative titles these days.

I can't believe my blogging has precipitously dropped off these past few months.  When I was homeschooling both kids, I would oftentimes take a few minutes in the morning to at least start a post.  Now that Akea is attending public school, it's a rush to get everyone out the door to drop her off, and she comes home with plenty of homework, most of with which she needs help.

And having Charlie at home, by himself, means he needs more attention from me.  It's just the way things are rolling these days.

From a homesteading perspective, things are slowing down, but I have been attacking some projects inside the house.  So right now, our life looks like this:

1. The steers go to the butcher tomorrow.  When we bought them, we knew they weren't pets, but because we raised them from their first week of life, we've grown a bit attached.

2. The younger hens are almost six months old and have been laying small, pullet eggs for about a month.  We're happy that the flocks merged without a hitch, and the goats are enjoying being pastured with them as well.  Our thought is that the goats provide a degree of predator protection for the chickens.

3. The garden has been done for a while.  The no-till idea didn't mix well with my fatigue and the drought this summer, so Byron will till it in the spring and we will try raised beds.  I have a bit of lettuce in pots.

4. We need to prep the hoop house for the chickens, which involves clearing it out, protecting the sides where they'd dug under last year, and making a small access door into the garden.  We want them to be able to go outside when they want, instead of being cooped up (literally) all winter.

1. I painted the kitchen and large common area at the back of the house, and have begun to work on re-upholstery again.  Soon to come is painting and/or refinishing a few pieces of furniture, then organizing.  Lots of organizing.

2. Byron plans to repair the floor and damaged joist in the downstairs bedroom, and lay hardwood flooring.  Part of the holdup has been figuring out exactly how to reconfigure the bathroom, but I think we have finally made our decision...we're keeping it simple and not tearing up and rebuilding walls.

3. My Nutrimill died!  I believe the motor burned up.  However, I have to give props to L'Equip, the company that makes the machine.  They told me to send it in, and they're fixing it free of charge.  Totally took my word for it that I'm the original owner, too, and told me not to even worry about sending in the receipt.  In all this, a big thanks to my friend, Katey, who has let me borrow her hand mill!

In all this, we are trying to figure out some ways to streamline the homesteading aspect of our lives.  Raised beds will hopefully be easier on me, and Byron would like to set up some semi-permanent electric wire paddocks for whenever we get more cows.  Any by the way, we are going to try to get a couple heifers (young, female cows) that we can breed, which will be much more sustainable than buying calves.

I will be back to update from time to time, but my guess is that it won't be as frequent as it has been in the past.  As our kids grow, they're beginning to show interests in different activities.  For Charlie, it's soccer and guitar.  Akea is interested in basketball and drama.  True, this seems contrary to the homesteading lifestyle to a degree, but we are trying to find that balance.