Posted on

Farm Goals for 2013.

I’m a terrible procrastinator. I mean, absolutely horrible about waiting til the last minute. So, to help with that I’ve decided to write down our goals for the farm for this coming year. After all, if they’re in writing they’re much harder to ignore. So, here goes:

1) More fencing. In particular, I’d love to have all of the land at the bottom of the hill fenced in for the goats and donkeys.

This picture was taken on top of the hill looking down into the doe pen and beyond – Beyond is 
what needs to be fenced in.

2) A barn. I’m not picky (about barns, that is; food, men, books, and clothes, I definitely am lol), it doesn’t have to look like the classic red barn. In fact, I’ve seen great barns made out of those portable carports.

3) Expand our garden. Although last year, my black thumb actually started to turn a little green as far as flower gardening goes – vegetable gardening is a-whole-nother story. The only thing in our veggie garden that did well was okra (which was okay with me since I love okra and ate more than my share last summer lol). Part of the problem, I think, is our soil. It’s always been so difficult to grow anything, even grass, on top of the hill.

4) Add more fruit and citrus trees. Last year, I added Brown Turkey Fig and Flordaqueen Peach trees to our little orchard, as well as, blueberry and strawberry plants. This year, I’d love to add pecan, apple, pear, plum, pomegranate, avocado, pawpaw, lime, and/or persimmon trees. I know I most likely won’t get all of those planted, but eventually I’m sure we’ll get there. There’s also something else I would love to add to the list one day. A couple of years ago, I read about farmers starting olive orchards groves in Georgia since the climate is ideal for their production. And if they can do it in Georgia, why can’t it be done in Alabama? 😉

5) Add new breeds and/or colors. I’m hoping to add Cotton Patch Geese to our flock this year. They’re a wonderful variety of geese that is currently listed as Critical on the ALBC’s Conservation Priority List. Plus, they’re a breed that was developed in the South, and just like our Pilgrim geese and Rhodebars, they’re auto sexed (and you know how much I love auto sexing breeds). I also want to add a new color of peafowl to our flock and one more breed of turkeys (I’m leaning towards Norfolk BlackNarragansett, Midget White, or Beltsville White, although my mom wants Chocolate turkeys).

6) Add a couple more registered goats. This one we’re sort of on the way to completing. We’re on a waiting list for at least one, most likely two, Miniature Nubians. My mom, who has been wanting Nubians for a while, is super excited about them. Me, I’m still thrilled about the addition of Milo (who has turned out to be an absolute doll and one of the sweetest goats we have).

7) Bees. Adding a beehive has been on my list for a couple of years now, and hopefully this year, I’ll finally tackle it or at least research it a little more 😉

8) A dairy cow. This one is mainly for my mom, who apparently misses milking everyday.

A cow, goats, bees, and lots of gardening. Looks like this year is going to be super busy. But I know we can do it 🙂

Shared at: 
Tilly’s Nest and Farm Fun Friday

Posted on

Happy Birthday. . .

to me! I’m 29 today (cannot believe 30 is so near at hand), and look at the present my wonderful mother gave me:

I know, right, best present ever for the poultry obsessed 😉 They arrived early yesterday morning from Greenfire Farms in Florida. Four Rhodebars and three Bredas (supposed to receive four, but I’m sure they’ll correct that). I love perusing all of the pictures of ultra-rare breeds on Greenfire’s website and daydreaming. The Rhodebars and, most especially, the Bredas have been on my list for a while, and now they’re finally here.

A little info about our new chicks:

Rhodebars: From Greenfire’s website, “Rhodebars are the uniquely wonderful offspring of a shotgun marriage between the Yanks and the Brits.” In the 1940s, British geneticists created an autosexing breed capable of laying large quantities of eggs by crossing Golden Brussbars (a rare British breed developed by R.C. Punnett and Michael Peace) and Rhode Island Reds (the most common and well-known of American chicken breeds). Autosexing means the chicks can be sexed at hatch based on their coloring (females are chipmunk colored, while males are lighter-colored with a white spot sometimes on top of their heads). I love autosexing breeds (we already have Pilgrim geese, which are well-known for being one of the few waterfowl breeds to possess that quality), and I think these are going to be a great addition.

Bredas: From Greenfire’s website: “. . . breda are so wild and extreme in their appearance that they look like they were designed for the movie Avatar.” I think these are my new favorite breed, one reason being that Bredas were at one time common in the US. Then the Civil War came along and they began to decline in numbers until they were probably extinct here. However, the breed was kept alive in Europe. Bredas are known for their striking appearance, unique gait, and for not possessing a comb. I’m really looking forward to seeing how they turn out.

So far, all seven are doing fantastic, even after traveling a couple hundred miles. And I have to say, although they’re described as being large and powerful, the Bredas (and the Rhodebars, too) are the friendliest chicks I’ve ever owned and we’re all really enjoying them.

Posted on

Bucket List.

I’ve seen this floating around on a few other blogs, and thought I’d give it a try. Basically, it’s a bucket list and you cross off the things you’ve done. 

1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars 
3. Played in a band 
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland (No, but I’ve been to Disney World in Orlando.)
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo (And I can’t sing, so you can imagine how horrible it was lol.)
11. Bungee jumped (No way – I’m a complete chicken when it comes to heights.)
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm 
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch 
15. Adopted a child (Would really love to, and I hope we can in the future.)
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables 
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked
23. Take a sick day when you’re not ill
24. Built a snow fort (How could I? This isn’t exactly snow country lol.)
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon 
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors (Recent ancestors from the past few generations, yes, but not
the more distant ones.)
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language (Not good with languages, but I’ve always wanted to learn Arabic.)
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke 
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies 
62. Gone whale watching (No to whale watching, but yes to dolphin watching.)
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets, or plasma (I’ve tried to, but unfortunately I’m like a turnip.)
65. Gone sky diving (Never happening in a million years lol.)
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar (No, but I’ve eaten mullet roe.)
72. Pieced a quilt 
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been a passenger on a motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book 
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the paper
85. Kissed a stranger at midnight on New Year’s Eve
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Got a tattoo
94. Had a baby 
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit 
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee

41 out of 99. Not too bad for only being 28, but a lot of the ones I haven’t done are to do with traveling. Growing up, I dreamed of visiting every single country by the time I reached 25 (definitely missed that goal lol). I so wish we could do more traveling, but honestly, it’d be a little hard to go on a long vacation without taking our animals along with us lol. Besides, my other goal was to live on a farm, and I think I’ve definitely achieved that one. 

Posted on

A-Z About Me.

I’ve see this on several other blogs and thought it would be fun to try.

A. Age: Let’s just say 30 is right around the corner.

B. Bed size: Queen.

C. Chore that you hate: Cleaning out the doe house during kidding season.

D. Dogs: Weimaraners: Hunter (5 1/2 yrs old), Remy (3 1/2 yrs old). Standard Poodle: Verity (1 3/4 yrs old).

E. Essential start to your day: A glass of milk every morning.

F. Favorite color: Green.

G. Gold or Silver: Silver.

H. Height: 5’11”. Believe me, I was taller than just about every boy I knew growing up. 

I. Instruments you play: I played the flute and piccolo in marching and concert band in school.

J. Job title: I’m lucky enough to get to stay at home and take care of the animals.

K. Kids: Do goats count? I do have a couple of young cousins that we raised for the first few years of their lives that are like my own children. We really miss the boys, now.

L. Live: Alabama – “The Heart of Dixie”.

M. Make of car: Chevrolet Trailblazer.

N. Nicknames: Angel (but only Clint calls me that) and Shell are ones that I answer to now. Shelly, Shelly Bee, Beezie, and Pee Pot (don’t ask me how I got that name – much too embarrassing) were all childhood nicknames. Clint wanted me to include his nickname, too. . . Eastwood. It’s his first nickname; my mom started calling him that years ago and he still loves it. I may just have to start calling him Eastwood in this blog ; )

O. Overnight hospital stays: I had horrible inner ear infections as a child and was hospitalized often with them.

P. Pet Peeves: People with short fuses.

Q. Quote from a movie: Most of my favorites come from Steel Magnolias.
“In a good shoe, I wear a size six, but a seven feels so good, I buy a size eight.”
“Honey, time marches on, and eventually you realize it’s marchin’ across your face.”
“I would rather have thirty minutes of wonderful than a lifetime of nothing special.”
“There is no such thing as natural beauty.”

R. Right or left handed: Right.

S. Siblings: I’m an only child, but always wanted older brothers. 

T. TV Shows: Too many: The Golden Girls, CSI, Law & Order, Law & Order: SVU, Law & Order: UK, The Dick Van Dyke Show, Leverage, Too Hot In Cleveland, Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives, The Waltons, and Ghost Adventures (that show scares me silly).

U. Underwear: You bet.

V. Vegetable you hate: None, I love veggies.

W. What makes you run late: The snooze button.

X. X-Rays you’ve had: Too many: Dental x-rays, sprained ankles, sprained finger, broken feet, broken toes, broken tail bone twice, mild concussion, chest x-rays. . . Did I mention I was a klutz growing up and still am?

Y. Yummy food that you make: I’m the cook and baker of the family so I think they like pretty much anything I make.

Z. Zoo animal: All of them.