Consider how the wildflowers grow....Luke 12:27 NIV
Living small in our 880 square foot cottage and micro farming on approximately an acre of land.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Has it really been almost a year?

Let's see if I can post an update in a nutshell.

We got a good jump start in the spring with some new baby bunnies and acquiring a few new rabbits for breeding.  My main breeding doe died during childbirth in early spring.  However, in September, the Mr. and I discussed it and we were both in agreement that right now rabbits aren't for us.  We sold all but 4, our 4 favorites we are keeping as pets, instead.

The chickens did well.  We had two different hatchings after the Mr. got me an incubator on craigslist!  The first hatching we got 5 roosters.  The second, we got 13 mix-chicks, some hens, some roos.  

We were given 3 bantams, 3 meat birds, 5 roosters, and 2 turkeys.  Unfortunately, we lost the turkeys and 3 chickens to the pigs.

We also bought 3 khaki campbell duck hens.

The meat birds went right to the freezer and the roosters have been slowly making their way to the kitchen as they mature and become troublesome.

I have not had to buy eggs in over a year and for that I am thrilled!  The birds more than pay for themselves.

It was later in the year, but we did eventually get two pigs, two Tamworth cross females.  They are not nearly as personable as our first pig, and the one has bitten me twice, but they aren't escapees.  I did have to double their fencing thickness to keep them from grabbing chickens by their tails through the fence and pulling them in.  I don't think I'll raise tamworths again.  I would like to try Durocs or Gloucestershire Old Spots.

We had two dairy goats this summer on loan again, and my friend was going to gift me the one goat, service her with her buck, and let me keep the baby(ies).  It was a remarkable gift, so generous, but after discussing it with hubby, we decided not to take on goats.  Our current barn situation and my time limits right now were making it very stressful on me.  I love farming and would love to do more, but I admit that I am a split personality.  A part of me loves the suburban style life, with a clean, tidy, stylish house, and smelling nice and wearing nice clothes.  I have to be able to divide myself between the two (as well as homeschooling and running some at-home businesses).

I also tried quail this year.  That didn't turn out well at all.  The little boogers kept dying on me.  We finally ended up with 10 males.  They lasted a while and started dying off.  We got 6 in the freezer.

The garden did fairly well.  I couldn't put in as much time as I wanted to in it and I planted way too much summer squash!  LOL!  Next year more beans and peas and less summer squash!!

The chickens devastated my tomato crop and edible flower garden.  Either they will have to be fenced in or the gardens will have to be next year.

We were able to acquire more cages for the rabbits, some for free, and I kept them because I would like to start breeding a rare meat breed in the future.  I also got a gorgeous large wooden hutch for free, which we used for the ducks this summer.  The best gain was a shed for only $30 from our neighbors.  The house was purchased and is being fixed up, so they wanted to update the shed situation.  It was a nice steal for us!

Next year, our focus is going to be on the birds.  They are the most productive and beneficial right now.  We want to get 6 more non-related chickens, and maybe a breeding pair of turkey. 

 My other focus is going to be on creating a prettier property.  For the last two years it was very utilitarian and well, it got ugly.  I told my neighbors that I recognize that our yard got ugly, and we are working on understanding what works best for our property, our ability, our animals, AND the neighborhood.  After all, while I do live in a rural area, it is still a town neighborhood of mostly nice little cottages, ranches, farm houses, and cape cods.  It isn't fair to the neighborhood when one property owner's place looks unkempt and trashy.  Ours looks like an unfinished project that got hit by a tornado (aka children who love playing outside.)  So, we'll endure and enjoy the sin-covering blanket of snow this winter and in the spring start anew with a plan for prettying up the place, hopefully with a cottage garden, too.

1 comment:

  1. nice to see you blogging again! pretty-ing up our yard is definitely on the to-do list as well! between the kids, and various animal pens, it's a mess!