October 2017 marks two milestones for our family; we have now been on the farm for nine years, and I turned forty.
Something about turning forty has changed me. With any luck, I hope to live another forty years. It would be a gift of another lifetime! With that, it got my little pea brain churning, thinking about:
- The importance of living every day to the fullest
- Celebrating every birthday, and that sending birthday cards to family/friends is no longer optional
- Planning for a life we’d like to live after the kids have moved out
- Becoming debt-free so we can work minimally and live to the max
- Maintaining our health so we can enjoy life to the fullest
I also think about how I have already lived four years longer than my own grandfather did, and how every day is truly a blessing.
On a funnier note, I am trying to understand why, at forty:
- My body has begun to cling to every single calorie like a person dangling from the side of a cliff
- God decided that visible nose hairs are not optional just because you are a woman while simultaneously they become more prevalent/darker…yet at the same time, I am losing the hair on the top of my head
- Any new hair I DO happen to grow on my head is either white and silky or a thick and extremely unruly black menace that sticks straight out
- I can throw out my back by simply standing up and moving my leg half-inch in the ‘wrong’ direction
These are the things I ponder now.
Year Nine on the Farm
With this year, we are still working on paying off our debt, maintaining the home and grounds, and now we are downsizing.
While I did keep some baby chicks hatched this year, the new goal is to continue to downsize the flock until we have a nice number of laying hens. Let’s face it: I do NOT get $100 worth of eggs a month that I’m paying for the feed at this point! We do have some older layers as well as several hens who are more like pets, but as usual, we also possess a disproportionately large number of roosters who are getting fat on my dollar.
Now for a review in photos!
That time that everyone got ticked off after playing Sorry:
The cold and wet beginning to our square foot beds:
Our living room/library area after bringing in the ferns for the winter:
A beautiful winter sunset!
From 65 degrees to 48 in 47 minutes!
One day, as I was hanging laundry, I looked up to see this ‘mackerel sky’. I made myself pretty dizzy trying to take a good pic.
This year marked the beginning of new beds and a new gardening method: Square Foot Gardening. I love it!!! Jason built the beds. The soil you see was just, well…crappy, but it’s all I had. Now it has much better soil.
2017 was the Year of the Annoying Ladybug/Asian Ladybeetle invasion. Here is a group in our barn, but there were hundreds in the house. Yuck. Glad they do eat aphids, but it would be lovely if they would hibernate outdoors like REAL ladybugs!!!
Being sensitive to sodium nitrate (Read: gives me major migraines), I can only eat uncured meats. Let’s face it, when you live in the sticks, things can be difficult to find. Our local Wal-Mart decided to stop carrying ‘my’ bacon, so I was forced to drive thirty miles to find some. Jason came to the rescue with my Valentine’s gift!
Ladybug invasion continues in the warm sun:
A true ladybug! I found several Twice-Stabbed ladybeetles on our pear trees. Yaaaay!
Another ‘true’ ladybug, the Convergent Ladybeetle. I probably learned more about ladybugs this year than in my last 40 years!
April showers and all of that!
May’s warmth brings out the reptiles! Anoles and rat snakes are in full force!
A cicada emerges!
Swedish strawberry cake:
A new friend emerges from the woods! My first photos of Eleanor, the wild cat.
We add another new family member. Meet Esther. Note: Esther is the one without the beard.
Esther enjoys robes and hiding in the mini pantry. This behavior was not endorsed by yours truly. No one likes cat hair in their cereal.
Another new family member! Meet Milo:
2017, so far, has proved to be the Year of the Cat! I also have declared it the year of Returning to the Homestead since I have now deactivated my Facebook account and suddenly have hours and hours added to my day! Amazing, isn’t it? Hope you enjoyed this year’s re-cap.
On to 2018!!!