No Breezes, Just Wind

Wind, wind, wind. Does it ever go away? Whistling through windows, bending trees, rustling leaves, and waving long grasses. It really never stops.

At least not on the Trustead.

A few days ago, in the nighttime, I was suddenly awakened by a severe gust of wind, which shook the windows and house. I had a difficult time trying to get back to sleep. You may not believe it, but, it is pretty normal for us now.

However, I wonder if I will ever get used to it.

Wind gusts rattled the windows and caused the house to tremble slightly. Rain drummed steadily in monotonous, loud tones against the roof. I was almost certain that the gale had blown down at least ONE of our trees. But, in God’s mercy, none fell.

As my family often hears me say, “It seems like we never have breezes, just wind.”

We should call where we live the “Gusty Country.” It’s true, we really do live in the gusty country. We now have found out that when you live in the open countryside there is a lot —a lot— of wind.

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Edible Pets?

Does this picture look weird to you?

Yep. That is our pregnant dairy cow IN our backyard.

And Calfie was there as well.
Who needs dogs when a cow can be this much fun?

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Farmsteading – A Poem

Our “farmstead”: the Trustead

Fun times,
Apple trees,
Rainbow rays,
Mink attacks,
Snakes in field,
Tornado warnings,
Escaping calves,
Animal chores,
Dead bunnies,
Inventing strategies,
Nests full of eggs —
GOD IN CONTROL!!!!

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Was This Really Only One Day?

There are only 24 hours in a day. We know this but today it didn’t feel like it. Here’s a glimpse at our wacky, long day.

~Mow, mow, mow. Farmer, Helper and Comedian mowed a ton of the wild area

~Helper, Comedian, and Little Guy were heading back from the field to take a break. Helper was way ahead and he saw something in the grass and walked over it without touching whatever it was. As soon as he was passed it he turned around and saw that the IT was a snake.

Not just any snake, folks, but we think it was one of the three venomous snakes in our area.

After Helper used a shovel and killed the snake, Comedian shows us how long it was.

Say hello to the Yellow Timber Rattlesnake, folks.

While the boys didn’t know that the snake was poisonous, they did react fast.

~Venus was acting super strange. All day she kept walking toward or look at the barn, like she just wanted to be in her stall. Big girl even mooed as she looked longingly at the barn.

Farmer was in the field doing his thing when the littler kids playing in the front scream, “Venus! Venus is coming!” Low and behold, Helper made it right in time to stop Venus, who was free range at that point, walk right in one door of the barn and almost out the other door! Craziness.

Later Farmer checked her out and her breathing was quite fast. And later there was a long strand of mucus dripping from her vulva. We must be getting close for her to give birth.

~Kids had a grand time playing in the water and enjoying the sunshine today. What is funny about this was we didn’t have a a pump to pump up the pools so what did Farmer use? Our shop vac! Got it done!

~Chickens were free range today and always provide entertainment.

Wonder what tomorrow will bring?

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The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Out here in big sky country beauty surrounds us.  Both the sunrise and the sunset were awesome today!  I only caught the sunset though.

But it’s not all champagne wishes and caviar dreams here at the Trustead.  We’re redeeming the land and a lot of it is blown out.  Strange items in various states of deterioration and decay abound!

 

Been trying to figure out what this is? Sort of like a gate but its attached to some super long pieces of steel. One day I’ll dig it out and do something with it.

A piece of a concrete drainage pipe. What are you doing here and where did you come from?

The first shed with a roll of old fence I pulled from the first pasture. SO BLOWN OUT! But the cows have been using the first shed since December and don’t seem to mind. I plan to use the roll of fence to fence off a portion of the third pasture. One day…

A lot of wood posts in all sorts of places. These are in one of the sheds. We used 5 posts like these to build “the men’s club”. They’re in decent shape but we have to remove the nails and fence staples/pieces of wire fence from them.

Blown out wood debris that covers a “pond” at the entrance to what would be the fourth pasture or pine tree land as the kids call it. This is the same area where we recently planted potatoes and onions. These posts are huge! I’m guessing they are a solid 12 feet tall!

More of the same. 

What mysterious event happened that resulted in such widespread destruction?

Enough of the Bad and the Ugly….here’s some of the Good!

Tonight’s sunset

Another day of blessings. Grace abounds at the Trustead!

 

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Is the Tide Changing?

How the Lord works. After only gathering a few eggs or so a day, our old birds (the ones who survived the devastating predator attacks) plus four “teenage” new hens we added, we surpassed a dozen eggs today.

FIFTEEN.

What’s better than fresh eggs from happy chickens that eat organic grain and all the bugs they want? Eating it with freshly picked produce (kale!) from your backyard.

Not much to say beyond, THANK YOU, JESUS!

We’ll see what tomorrow brings.

Posted in Chickens, Eggs, Garden, In the Kitchen, Praises | Leave a comment

If We Were To Get Another Animal

I would get another Jersey Cow. Hands down, no question about it. In a heartbeat, if funds and availability turned up.

She would be around 4 or 5 and bred back (pregnant) for the fall. If she had a calf, that’s cool. If not, that’s OK too. If she wasn’t bred back, that would even be OK.

Why another cow?

Simple,milk!

This way we could stagger when the cows are due (and subsequently dried off) and we could have milk year round. You know, its been over two months since Venus was dried off and it is a big bummer not to have milk. A real big bummer.

A goal we have is to supply all our milk needs year round. A dream is to have an abundance of milk to supply most of our dairy needs (talking cheese, yogurt, etc) and be generous to supply milk to others.

Neither the goal nor the dream can be accomplished without another cow or goat or something that gives milk (can you say Camel?). For a jumbo sized family like mine, a single goat isn’t gonna cut it. Maybe 3 or 4 would. But I’m here to tell you, these kids drink some serious milk. Especially Comedian. Dude likes himself a tall frostie white one. And I do too!

No doubt, we ALL miss this stuff.

Plus, we’re not so into goats. No offense goat people, but I digs me a cow.

Our Jersey milking cow, Venus, and her bull calf, Calfie, we are going to butcher when he’s bigger.

Therefore, if were to get another animal it would be a cow.

Here’s the rub. We don’t have cashola for another cow; and we don’t have a trailer for transport! It’s a miracle we even have one cow (thanks to the good hearted farmer who delivered her to us).

And allow me to pause here and say…we are THANKFUL for our one cow and her calfie. She has been a blessing to us and we never anticipated getting a cow so soon into our homestead journey.

So, what’s a poor homesteader family to do?

As Steven Curtis sang many years ago, let us pray, let us pray….

Now, we’ve talked about a second cow but it’s been awhile. And we didn’t really pray that much about it or for one. But I’m here today to post and proclaim, I wants me another cow.

So, If you run into someone who has a Jersey Cow and would like to give it away and has a trailer to bring it to us, shoot ‘em my way. Or if you see a cow, any cow, walking around that seems homeless, shoot her my way. Or if you hear of an abandoned cow or a cow in an orphanage or anything related to a cow in need of housing and food and shelter, I’m the man to let know. You can reach me anytime at: Farmer{at}thetrustead.com.

Thank you. Thank you very much.

PS. If you get me a cow I’ll supply you 100 gallons of milk and as much manure as you want.

Posted in Cows, Moo-itations, Raw (Real) Milk | Leave a comment

How Does Your Garden Grow?

Trustead, Trustead, longing for Jesus
How does your garden grow?
Four boys, five girls, learning and playing
And ten acres of land to sow.

Helper on his laptop. (See GrandFarmer, he’s enjoying it! And note the bird book next to him.)

Poet studying up on sewing during her free time.

What mother doesn’t enjoy the sound of her kids playing well together?!

They are our indoor garden growing super fast and strong.

And here is our vegetable garden.

That is our reality. Trusting in Jesus. Longing for the Lover of our souls.

And nothing about it is easy but like trusting in Jesus is sweet, submitting to His Kingly rule in our lives, doing the hard things that He places in front of us, is a sweet reality.

It’s sweet because we see Him all the more.

Weeding to be done but… LIFE and FOOD!

We see how He is strengthening us, making our roots go deeper into Him, the best, most nourishing soil we could hope for.

And though there is weeding and pruning and hardening off we must endure, the finished product, we trust, will be far better than where we began.

Garden in front of the garage

Trustead, Trustead, do you see your Savior?
How does your garden grow?
Enjoy His gifts, what He has entrusted to you
And remember it is He who allows you to sow!

Without knowing how these plants will fair in the weeks to come, we smile expectantly, knowing He will give each of us just what we need!

Posted in Garden, Homesteading, Praises, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Homemaker Gets Countryfied!

Homemaker gets on the rider for the first time and is luvin’ it. Watch out! Kids follow close behind on their bikes while the wild one gets the grass cut. She’s officially gone country now!

Posted in Homesteading, The Country, Uncategorized, Video | Leave a comment

Random Pictures of Life Around the Farm

Well. It’s Sunday. We’re just enjoying our Lord’s Day so… here are some pictures of life around the Trustead. And, two thumbs up for our new photographers, J and S, also known as Helper and Poet! They are helping to share the burden of capturing life and are doing quite well!

Cows enjoying the land

Calfie up close.

Chickens being chickens.

Pullets housing.

And occasionally even I can get outside!

Expanding our growing area just beyond the pasture areas in Pine Tree land.

Working late to complete projects

Securing our piggies with recycled barbed wire

And here’s my man… being a cowboy. Does that make me a cowgirl?

Till tomorrow. Thanks for reading and taking interest in our adventure…

Posted in Daily Life, Homesteading, What's Up? | Leave a comment