;

Real

Jul
1

I would have told this story yesterday, but our power was out all day from the storms. We’ve had just about nothing but rain here for the past month. Anyway! Monday evening, I was sitting on the front porch with a glass of wine chatting on the phone to my boyfriend and a green Jeep came slowly down the road then turned in at my driveway.

Now, I live in the boonies, okay. At the end of the road. I don’t get a lot of random traffic here.

The vehicle stopped halfway up the driveway and a man got out of the Jeep and started walking up the bank to the front yard.

I said, “Can I help you?”

He said: “A co-worker showed me your website and I live near here so she wanted me to find out if it was real.”

Me: “There are the cows, there are the goats, there are the chickens, there are the horses.”

Green Jeep Man: “And there’s the barn. I guess it’s real.”

Me: “Yes. And here’s me. I’m real.” I was still sitting in the rocking chair on the porch, and he was still walking toward me. “And I’m just relaxing on my porch and I’m not wearing any pants.”

The man started backing up.

Me: “And that’s really real.”

Green Jeep Man kept backing up. “I’m sorry!”

Me: “It’s okay. Stop by sometime when I’m wearing pants!”

Real.
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Real.
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Real.
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Real.
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I’m real, too. Just be glad I’m not posting a picture of me without pants to prove it.

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Farmin’

Jun
22

IMG_5823
I’m giving a lot (as in a LOT) of workshops this year (18….count ‘em 18….retreats in total) but we’re also farmin’ away here! For example. Yesterday.

First, we went to pick out a pig. Yep. We got a pig! But we didn’t take it home. It’s staying right where it is and the price includes having it hauled to the butcher. I won’t see that little guy again until he’s a big guy and all packaged up.

Then we picked up a new buck for the goat girls. What I’ve been doing with the girls is moving in a new buck every summer, and moving out the previous one. I’m keeping girls now to increase the herd, so we’re getting a new buck every year.

The new Mr. Darcy:
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We also picked up a load of fence wire to fence a new field for the goats going up the hill into the woods. It will be good brush-eating for them, and it’s a bit rocky in there, too, so that will be good for their hooves.

There’s about to be a big fencing project.
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Then it was chicken-catching time. Again. Those three little hens were out. AGAIN. We think we finally got it fixed where they’re getting out, so hopefully this is the last time they’ll have to be caught. I was tired of throwing myself at chickens trying to catch them running around so this time I herded all the big chickens into the house, shut the door on the chicken house, opened the door of the chicken yard, and enticed the little chickens to just walk right in. And they did!

Whew. That was a lot easier.

Then we moved the other 12 younger hens from the stall in the barn where they’ve been since they were chicks. We managed to get 11 of them cornered in the stall and successfully transferred to the chicken house/yard—-but one got away. So now we’ve got one little hen running around wild.

I think she wants in with her buddies, though, and we’ll try the same trick on her.
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This younger batch is the Golden-Laced Wyandottes.
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They are some really pretty chickens! I can’t wait till they start laying.
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Then we moved the cows around. I always give Glory Bee a day off after workshops. She works hard, you know. So she gets let out with the other girls on Saturday after milking and then re-separated on Sunday to start her work week again.

The girls are always sad when mommy goes back to work. They stare at me with their resentful faces.
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And there were a lot of “we’s” in all that busy-ness yesterday, weren’t there? Morgan is such a good helper! Okay, actually, Morgan is home for the summer but she’s pretty busy working as a 4-H ambassador, so the “we” doesn’t refer to her (though she is a very good helper when she has time). But, there has been a lot going on here lately, and a lot has been getting done, and lots of new plans–and I don’t want to sound like I’m some amazing machine getting it all done by myself. Because of course I’m not. I do have someone here who is helping me, and he’s a little shy, but workshop attendees have gotten to meet the adorable man in my life. He’s someone local, from around here. And maybe eventually I’ll write more about that, but that’s it for now. I’m really happy. And we’re farmin’!

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  1. IMG_5513

    May 28, 2015 - The Ducklings Take An Outing!

    Here comes the supervisor, with the big baby ducks!

    “Stay with me, children, and I’ll take you to the big puddle.”

    “Children!”

    “Get back here!”

    “I told you to stay with me, children! I’m not taking you to … Continued…

  1. IMG_0559b

    April 13, 2015 - Holey Board, Batman!

    My mother had this tea cart with one of her silver tea services on top, and below she had a collection of vintage kitchen tools along with a cutting board.

    There is a potato masher, two graters, a handheld mixer, and a measuring cup.

    And an interesting cutting board. I’m not sure if the cutting board is actually as old … Continued…

  1. IMAG3827x_edited-1

    March 23, 2015 - Sunday Afternoon in Some Places

    Me, yesterday. On a horse. In a barn. At an amateur team penning event. It wasn’t one of my horses–I was there with a friend and it was her horse. I went to watch, really, swear. She talked me into getting on the horse, then she talked me into going in the pen. I think she just wanted a good … Continued…

  1. 11051131_838443649544836_1402739047_n

    March 17, 2015 - Calling All Janeites

    Morgan is working on a research paper for one of her classes at WVU. As part of her research, she asked if she could post on my blog to pose some questions to those of you who may have an interest in her subject, Jane Austen. Morgan is an avid fan of Jane Austen’s work. If you have any knowledge or opinions, please help! You can respond to her in the … Continued…

  1. IMAG3791x

    March 9, 2015 - A Wild Winter Storm Adventure

    After snow that had remained on the ground for nearly three weeks due to freezing and sometimes sub-zero temperatures, this past Wednesday we had a meltdown and rain. I was caught on the road home to my farm behind a huge fallen tree.

    Luckily, state road workers showed up and eventually cut and cleared it out of the way.

    You … Continued…

  1. IMG_4667

    February 17, 2015 - Hanging In

    I think that would be winter hanging in. I was feeling a little bit on the verge of a meltdown (and not talking about the temperature) this morning when my neighbor Andy showed up by surprise to plow my driveway.

    That was really nice of him, though it’s supposed to snow some more tomorrow.

    But one can but dream when–… Continued…

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The Slanted Little House

"It was a cold wintry day when I brought my children to live in rural West Virginia. The farmhouse was one hundred years old, there was already snow on the ground, and the heat was sparse-—as was the insulation. The floors weren’t even, either. My then-twelve-year-old son walked in the door and said, “You’ve brought us to this slanted little house to die." Keep reading our story....



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