Have you ever noticed that spring is a season of new beginnings? That while the framework of our world doesn’t change with this wonderful season, the framework does produce something new?
Take something as simple as the old tree in your back (or front) yard. The trunk, the roots, the thick branches have been there for decades! And every spring, the faithful giant puts on a fresh face with new leaves, leaves that are similar to, yet totally different from anything the tree has grown before.
I don’t know why, but this detail of my world has been sinking deep. I’ve been living in awe of it this spring.
And in echo of spring’s new beginnings, I’d like to give you an update on a few new beginnings of our own!
FARM LIFE DOWN BELOW
I say ‘down below’ because that’s where most of our ‘farm’ activity is carried out! We still feel so fortunate to have found such an amazing rental home! While there is a greenhouse business between our home and the animals we keep, I honestly don’t think we could have found a better place for our needs!
Allow me to give you a little update on the animal world we keep adding to!
POULTRY UPDATE ON DUCKS AND TURKEYS
After overwintering our breeding stock without artificial lighting, we began getting duck eggs the third week of March. Not to be long undone, our turkeys joined the rigmarole on April 4th.
How do I know this? Because I’m trying to keep a journal this year, not only for the birds, but on all of our food raising activities.
Which reminds me: we lost one of our three female ducks last week. I need to record the symptoms so that I’ll remember, should they begin appearing in any of our other birds!
As of now, there are two egg clutches down below. We have a buff duck who is having trouble deciding if she actually wants to go broody. Not only that, the poor girl doesn’t know which clutch to choose! She constantly runs back and forth between the turkey’s eggs and her own, dark nest.
I’m beginning to suspect her activity is keeping the turkeys at bay! We’re going to try moving the turkey’s box up high enough that she can’t get into it. And hopefully, she’ll settle down and our turkeys will settle in. If not, her eggs are going to be shipped away to a friend’s incubator!
Yes folks! We bit the bullet and are now the proud owners of not one, but two fat, male lambs! Bought from a local flock, they are a meat/wool breed. By August they should weight 130-140lbs and be ready for slaughter.
I’m an eager learner! While I’ve wrangled more than a few mustangs in my lifetime, sheep are new to me. So far, all I’ve learned is that they are creatures unlike any other!
My man has named them: the long, lean, black-faced one is Jack Sprat (know the nursery rhyme?) and the chubby white one is Mr Hardy (from the old black and white “Laurel and Hardy Show”).
They’ve only been here for a few days. Once they are well settled, I’m going to start with the halter-breaking. Wish me luck! I’m sure I’ll need it!
BERRY BUSHES AND CUTTINGS
Remember how I was going around, taking cuttings from neighbor’s shrubs? Well, I accidentally allowed some of them to dry out (sad face).
However, just this week, I realized all over again that I live in one of the best places in the world. It’s the one of the best places because it’s full of amazing people! After a lady in my area read the above post, she invited me to come take some of her berry cuttings!
Not only that, but I was welcome to dig suckers from her currants, saskatoons (June berries), raspberries and blackberries! Need I mention she was also telling me take strawberries?!
I’m so very thankful! And until we get our property, the suckers will live in gunnysacks full of dirt in the back yard. And yes, I will remember to water them!
LAND AND COTTAGE PROGRESSION
Suspense levels have been high in our home. Folks, I haven’t been this nervous in a long while! Friday…this Friday…in two days…we talk with the bank. It’s then that we are likely to discover if we can get the loan needed to move forward.
We’ve been saving like most people don’t even know is possible! In spite of living in a low income area, the past two years of budgeting and recording our finances have shown us that we can do it, and do it well. This we know.
However, there are cards stacked against us. The primary issue is that in this valley I so love, folks often want to pay cash for carpenter’s work. And the bank doesn’t like cash jobs. Unfortunately, my husband has had more than a few weeks of cash work this spring, which will affect the loan we can get.
In the face of this huge hurdle, I’ve discovered hope is like spring. It persists in coming ’round again. And again. So strange, this living thing!
As spring starts new beginnings in the world around us, this is an account of our new beginnings for the year. I’m ready! We’re ready!
And if you think of us, pray that our minds will remain focused on what matters most, regardless of what our new beginnings hold!