Sunday, November 20, 2011

Cinderella's Farm Chores

The entire month of November has been spent in dress-up clothes for Miss Ivey.  Halloween opened her eyes to the sparkly dresses that were in her very own room.  Tinkerbell, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty... she has tromped around town in each one, much to the enjoyment of pretty much everyone who passes by.   She has even gone to her Play Pals class in costume on more than one occasion.  I told Miss Gina that there were two choices.... a happy Tinkerbell or an unhappy Ivey.  Happiness wins, of course.  I'll take Cinderella in galoshes, a huge smile, and a bounce to her walk any day.

Yesterday, Ivey was watching the intro to a Disney movie, where Tinkerbell flies up to the castle.  She said in her matter-of-fact way,  "That's me, Tinkerbell.  I was Tinkerbell first... when she was a bat."  Ahh, the three year old mind is a glorious thing!  The synapses of three year olds must fire in a completely unique way.  It's like the information must jump, skip, dance, and twirl across those little heads.  Ivey talks to herself a lot in the car.  I was listening in the other day and overheard her having a very serious conversation... with her toes.  "Hey!  We made a deal.  Now, zip it!"  I don't know what kind of deal the eleven of them made, but it sounded pretty serious.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

The Sawmill

Since the purchase of our very own portable saw mill, Jeff and Randy have been hard at work cutting down trees and milling beams in Randy's backyard.  As a practice run in the post-and-beam technique, the two are constructing a simple trailer shed.

With the help of Asa, they have managed to get all of the beams cut and are now doing the joinery work.  It's a slow go, but this is the trial run for what will eventually be the process that builds my new home.

Part of me is really nervous about biting off such a major adventure as milling our own lumber and building our own post and beam home.  But, there's also something very exciting with the idea of being able to design, plan, and build an entire home from scratch.  Our ideas.  Our decisions.  Our wood.  Our plan.  As two highly independent individuals, I can see this fitting our personalities quite nicely.

I expect that in the Spring, once we have finished helping my parents on the renovation of my childhood home, our adventure in house making will really kick off.  We are just months away from ending phase 1, gaining a space of our own to call home for a few years, and entering phase 2 of our wacky plan!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Hay Day!

We had some seriously crummy luck with chickens this year.  Let's see... we bought some young pullets that ended up having MG (Mycoplasma gallisepticum), were stupid and didn't quarentine new recruits so we exposed most of our flock (so we had to cull them), had a fox or other critter get some, had horrible luck with hatching eggs, and ended up with no birds at all.  How depressing.

After a break from even trying to hatch again (I ran into some really bad luck on my hatches.  Humidity, maybe?), I'm giving it another shot.  The kids and I drove out to Garry Farm to pick up two dozen blue/black/splash maran eggs and a dozen lavender orpingtons ones.  We will be using these as a Life Cycle project for our class.  Hopefully, we will be able to candle them and track their development.  I put them into the incubator tonight, so technically there is a good chance some will begin hatching on a Thursday, November 3rd.  Back when my hatches were successful, we had a few that would start hatching on day 20.  The kids would love to watch as they hatch out!

 The farm visit was a good one.  It is always so nice to go to a working farm and be reminded... it's never the rolling fields and the red painted barn and matching silo.  It's real.  It's messy.  It's pieced together with what you have... and that is just fine.

As we begin working on our property and laying out what we would like to raise here, grow there, and where to put this pavilion or our home, I need to keep in mind that a farm can take on many shapes.  It can fill many different needs.  Martha Stewart does not have to design my layout.  She sure hasn't designed the vast majority of the farm scenes I have visited.  Why?  Because they are bustling and growing and changing and adapting and surviving.  And that, my friends, is a good thing.