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Daily Prompt: Degree

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Having been raised in the city, this gal has been on a learning curve these last 3 years!

There has been a LOT of trial and error when it came to raising our chickens. And, I’m sure there’s still a bunch more I could learn!

Even growing a vegetable garden has been a challenge!

The first year we planted broccoli, cauliflour and red beets… But nothing grew!

The second year, I was so desperate to grow something, ANYTHING, that I wound up having a small tabletop garden in my kitchen!

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I was tickled pink with our cherry tomatoes, peppers, and herbs! I finally grew a ‘garden!’ Hey, ya gotta start somewhere!

This past summer was the first in our three years on the homestead where we actually saw a good variety of vegetables growing in the ground! But even this has proven to be a learning experience!

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We have big dreams for our little homestead…

This year we plan to increase our growing area which will take up the whole northwest corner of our land!

And with our our chickens, we are researching a number of different ways to make an income.

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Our hope is that at the very least our chickens will bring in enough money to earn their keep. Maybe the following year we could turn a profit!

It’s been a challenge, this homesteading way of life! But, like a big ship in the ocean, that turns around slowly, degree by degree, we plan to turn this homestead into a profitable self-sustaining venture!

Until next time,

Sheri

via Daily Prompt: Degree

Restoring Order…

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Well isn’t that a fine how do ya do! Here I told ya I was back, only to wind up having disappear again!

Turns out that after working away from the homestead, I found oodles of work to do!

One project in particular was dealing with a broken fence, out behind the barn!

Of course it was cold and raining… and, I wound up with a cold that knocked me off my feet for several weeks!

That’s what I get for working on the fence in the cold, cold rain!

Well, I’m here again. Not at 100%, but better than I was…

The littles must know I’m not at my best, because the boys’ have been quite the handful lately!

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‘EggHead’ and his brothers kept jumping over the broken fence…

Their 6 sisters following after them!

More than once our neighbors had to shoo our gang down to our place!

Thankfully they are understanding…

Especially since their Guinea hens like to come down and visit our boys on occasion.

Guess its a case of the grass being greener…

Now that I’m on the mend, its back to work…

Egghead, up to his usual shenanigans, started quite a ruckus, while scratching in our old tomato bed, near the back door of our house…

Out of the blue, ‘Egghead’ let out such a terrible screech. His brothers and sisters joined the screeching and took flight – in my direction!

I thought for sure that I was in the middle of an Alfred Hitchcock movie!

As I raised my arms in protection, the gang flew past me heading to a pile of skids where the flock like a to hang out.

Thankful that my eyes weren’t plucked out, I continued to watch the actions of the babies. Turns out that 3 of the boys tried to hump 1 of our hens at the same time!

I knew then that it was time to remove the boys from the flock.

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They were not happy about being moved to the confines of the barn… but at least there is order once more…

The girls are feeling more comfortable with only 1 rooster -Teriyaki (Terry) – in charge!

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Until next time,

Sheri

 

I’m Baaaaaack!

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After what seems like an interminably long time away, I’ve come back home.

No, I haven’t gone anywhere, other than to work… at a job away from the homestead.

If you’ve been following along, you might remember that back in January, mom decided to retire.

Shortly after, however, we had a slew of issues that hit us hard financially!

The biggest issue was when our heating system went out during the coldest part of the year!

We limped along through the growing season, but when it became evident that I needed to have my truck repaired – something I use quite a bit of – I realized that I needed to find a job away from the homestead!

And so it was… Each day I went to my job, leaving mom and the homestead behind…

Yet, life continues to throw us one curve ball after another. Once again, I find myself back on the farm, fulltime, to deal with family health issues.

Today, as I wandered around our little homestead, I made a list of all the things that need to be done!

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It would seem I’ve got my work cut out for me!

The only problem now, is that I’m fighting my own health issues! I seem to have gotten a bug…

As I sit here peruseing my ‘to do’ list, I’ve decided to take the day off and take care of my self. And, enjoying a nice cup of hot water with honey and apple cider vinegar. It’s good for what ails ya!

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So, as I ponder where to begin, I think I will focus on some basic practical indoor skills before I tackle the challenge of the work outdoors…

But, today, I rest…

It’s good to be home!

Sheri

So, You Want to Raise Chickens…

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Never in a million years did I think I would ever be doing this… but three years ago, there I was… holding my very first chicken!

I didn’t know who was more scared… me, or my new hen.

Visions of the Hitchcock movie, The Birds, ran through my head as I cautiously held this strange little creature… I was holding a live chicken… just one short month after moving into our new home… in the country.

We knew we were going to have chickens… however, I was planning on waiting till spring. Thus allowing me some time to study up on the subject of caring for our feathered friends.

But, when my neighbor unexpectedly asked us if we wanted their chickens, I quickly found myself thrust into the role of ‘chicken farmer!’

I had no clue what I was doing!

Thankfully, chickens are very forgiving!

As long as you make sure they have clean drinking water and food, they will lovingly supply you with breakfast.

But, you will have to cook it of course! They do expect you to do some of the work!

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Having been ‘thrown into the deep end’ with this chicken farming thing, I found myself wishing there were things I would have known ahead of time…

…things like caring for a sick or injured bird… or just what makes a good broody hen… and what exactly do you feed these little darlings!

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I remember spending all kinds of money on the expensive organic foods… but then, I didn’t realize we had a feed mill right near by, OR, that you could actually grow their food!

So, my question to you is this? Do you want to raise chickens?

If the answer is yes, then I would say, ‘Go for it!’

But… my best advice that I could give you would be… before you jump in, do some research first!

You don’t want to find yourself running around like a chicken with its head cut off, trying to figure out what to do for a sick or injured bird!’ By doing the research first, you are ahead of the game!

Yes, it has been a learning experience working with these little dinosaurs of mine. However, this ‘city chick’ turned country wouldn’t have it any other way!

Until next time,

Sheri

Weight Loss – When Food Doesn’t Satisfy

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Let’s face it! We not only desire food, we need it to survive!

But what happens when that food doesn’t satisfy us?

This dissatisfaction is usually an emotional one and if not dealt with, can manifest itself in a number of ways – such as bulimia, anorexia or compulsive eating.

To often we don’t know why or even understand the reason we give in to our unhealthy eating habits.

For example…

All my life, I have struggled with being overweight. I have tried many different weight loss plans, and even lossed weight… But, as soon as I lost the weight, I reverted to my old habits and gained all the weight back, and then some!

Why?

Well, in my case, I am an emotional eater… And when I am depressed, I really eat!

The reason – I look to food to find comfort!

I won’t go into detail about the reasons why I succumb to food for comfort – that’s a post for another day – just suffice it to say, the root cause of my emotional eating stems from a very poor self image.

Once I realized the hidden reason behind my unhealthy eating habits, I started looking at things differently…

First, I had to ask myself, ‘Do I want to be made well?’ — ‘Am I ready to face the truth?’ — Am I ready to give up this flawed thinking, and do what is necessary to get healthy?’

The road to reclaiming my health is not an easy one… I am fighting emotional demons…

Finding the willpower to overcome first takes the desire to be made well.

My faith, my trust in God, who is faithful and true to help me in this battle will help me overcome those demons…

I will lose the weight… and KEEP it off!

I am providing the will… others will provide encouragement… and He provides the power…

I can do this!

Until next time, eat healthy!

~ Sheri

 

 

Let the Healing Begin!

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DO YOU WANT TO GET WELL?

Do you ever have times when you have felt that you just ‘didn’t get it?’ You know, where sometimes you have to hear something a couple of times… Or maybe many, many times before the light bulb in your head clicks on?

As I sat in church this past Sunday, once again, the story of a man who was sick for 38 years was brought to my attention…

Back in the days when Jesus walked the earth, there was a pool… and at certain times, an angel would stir the waters… The first person to step into the water, after the water was stirred, would be healed of whatever disease they had! How cool is that?!?

One day, Jesus saw this man who had been sick for 38 years and asked him, ‘Do you want to get well?

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EXCUSES, EXCUSES, EXCUSES!

I would have thought that the man would have answered with a resounding “YES!”

However, he did not…

Instead, he gave Jesus excuses as to why he couldn’t get into the pool.

This got me to thinking. How many times do we make excuses for not taking better care of ourselves?

I know in my own life, I struggle with eating healthy. I know what I should eat, but I make excuses as go why I can’t go without those unhealthy foods!

But as I continued to listen to the story of this man, it came with a new twist…

Our pastor asked us a question. Why didn’t he just say yes? Why did he make excuses? Was it because he was comfortable in his situation? Had he become so used to people taking care of him, that being healed, he might actually have to live a healthy and productive life?!? Perhaps he enjoyed being taken care of… perhaps it was more comfortable for him to wallow in self pity…

This made me stop and wonder… Were there any underlying reasons keeping me from eating healthy…

I’ll share with you next time what I uncovered.

Till then, eat healthy!

~ Sheri

 

Tilling the Soil

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With camera in hand, I went outside. I found it to be unseasonably chilly for August weather. As I walked to a favorite spot overlooking our small farm, I could feel drops of rain coming to rest on my face. As the sun struggled to peek through the clouds, I could see the fog was beginning to clear… I needed to get my shot before the opportunity was lost.

As I stood, focusing the lens on my camera, I smiled as the weather reflected the image of the ‘fog’ that was beginning lift in my mind, allowing my thoughts to become clear…

For months now, I’ve been struggling… A sort of midlife crisis, if you will… You know, that state of mind you find yourself in when you’re not exactly sure what to do…

Finances were always at the top of my ‘grocery list’ of prayer requests. But what I kept seeing and hearing during my morning quiet times was, ’till the soil.’

I remember thinking to myself, ‘That’s great Lord, but how do I make any money tilling the soil?’

Not knowing what he meant, I began seeking an income away from the homestead…

On the day that I was to have an interview, I wound up getting a wake up call…

As I sought his leading and direction, I remember saying, ‘Lord, I don’t feel you telling me that I shouldn’t go to this interview, so I’m going… If this isn’t your will, shut the door… Your will be done, not mine.’

Mom told me that I sounded upbeat and positive about the possibility of this job… But, on my way to the interview I got stuck in traffic. As I sat there waiting for the vehicles in front of me to start moving again, the tractor trailer directly in front of me started to back up… The driver never saw me… At least not until after the damage was done…

However, I am very grateful!

It could have been worse… A LOT worse!

Shaken from the experience, I found myself wondering, ‘Why, Lord?

My Creator begin to show me scriptures about tilling the soil and about preparing meals for others. And, about how we can share our hearts and lives with others, even if the meal is simple and the setting is humble. Simply by doing these things, it says to others, ‘I care about you, I love you, and I have prepared a place for you.’

I believe that as each door closes on job opportunities away from the home, my Creator is showing me that I need to trust him more!

He is building my faith.

Faith means to trust… to believe… having trust or confidence in God to take care of my needs!

Just as tilling the soil prepares it by digging, stirring and overturning, which creates air pockets that allow air and water access to plants… God is ‘preparing’ me for something bigger…

He is digging up all the things in me that keep me from walking into the life He has planned for me. He is stirring my heart with the desire of growing and raising our own food… And, he is cultivating a new vision of what this farm is to be used for…

I’m not completely sure what that vision looks like so, I will put my trust in him… He knows what he is doing!

For now, I will put my faith into action and till the land while the weather allows… and, I will use our produce to create delicious, healthy meals for the family!

Till next time,

Sheri