Wednesday, July 23, 2014

New beginnings

It's...been a long time.

It has been about 2-1/2 years since I last blogged on here, and for good reason. Well, reasons. So many changes, I don't really know where to begin.

Well I guess I'll start with our daughter (!), who was born a few weeks after the last blog post. She is now running around like any other toddler, though we call her a "Threenager" since she's (nearly) 3 and acts like a teenager. Haha. We'll call her M for blog purposes ;-)

I got a LOT of my Mustang rebuilt (see my other blog). Painted the front end, new suspension, lots of new parts and lots less money. 

We're also expecting another girl to be born in a few weeks! We'll call her C... very excited, but maybe not so much with being overrun by girls (3:1 now, come on).

But the biggest news (for this blog's purpose, anyway) is..........


We sold our house and bought a homestead!

It's not the 10, or 5, or even 3 acres we dreamed about, but that just was not going to happen unless we waited for months or years. I kid you not, I've been looking for something with our criteria for years now and there have been, maybe, 3 properties which suited everything.  All that being said, there's nothing wrong with the house & land we're on. It's heavily wooded with a few open spots for gardens and such. The most beautiful 30-40' tall Oak trees ever. 

Our neighborhood is (as we've been told by jealous friends in the area) one of the best neighborhoods to be in, and it has been. Sweet people everywhere, most of whom are older & retired. I'll upload some pictures later, along with some of the plans we're working on. Right now it's just work, work, work, to get the house ready for kiddo #2.

Thanks for checking in!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

We're back!

With a lot of excitement to come!

More to follow later...

Thursday, December 1, 2011

A year in review...

I certainly didn't blog as much as I would have liked in 2011 (and to be honest, there's still time!), but it was a good year.

In case you hadn't heard, Texas is a smidgen dry.

Dry, and hot.  We had something like 75 days over 100 degrees. 

Now, it normally gets hot in Texas during the summer, but when the large high pressure system moved into Texas and refused to budge, we were stuck with agonizingly long, sunny, hot days with no cool spells to help.  So we waited for rain, and waited, and then turned on the sprinklers for a little bit, and then waited...

And nothing ever came.

But, all was not lost.  The potatoes grew very well.  So well, in fact, that we're looking at selling 2012's bounty at a Farmer's Market, to make a few extra dollars.  The peppers grew pretty well, and the onions did well.  Everything else kind of died off.* While there is not much hope for 2012 as far as reversing this drought, I will plant again and hopefully God will bless us with some much needed rain.  The rain barrels are full :-)

*The tomatoes I grew died off miserably in the heat, and to my surprise, came back to life in September!  We didn't get a lot, but it was neat to see.

One of the major problems with 2011 was "what do we do with all this food!?"  The answer is to preserve it for later, but we did very little preserving.  That should change next year.

So, that's about it for 2011.  I'm sure I'll post a few more times before the end of the year, because 2012 is nearly upon us and I have a lot of work to do.

There was one other little crop that did pretty well in 2011.  It should be "ripe" in a couple weeks or so, and should weigh about 7-8 lbs., and be over 20" long.  :-)

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Thursday, April 28, 2011

The lack of money = the lack of opportunity

It's a sad realization, but it is what it is.  It seems that in every aspect of life, you can have A, or you can have B, but you can never have both A & B.  As I continue to look for land (or land with a house) I'm finding that I just have too many criteria.  Call me a dreamer, but maybe one of these days it will magically fall into my hands.  If not, well, I'll have to compromise somehow.

The three major criteria I have are that: 1) I still need to work at my regular job, which means I need to be able to drive a reasonable distance to work.  2) I would like at least 5 acres (preferably 10), so that I may raise at least 1-2 small cows, along with sheep, chickens, turkey, and whatever else.  3) I need the land to be cheap enough that, when I add on the price of building a house, I'm paying about the same as what I'm paying now.

Obviously the last one is the one that jumps out to most people...many claim it to be impossible (maybe it is), but hear me out; Right now, I'm paying an annual property tax of nearly $4,000.  There is a good chance I would not be paying that much out "in the country," and so when you divide, say, $1500/12 months, that knocks $125 off your payments.

Then, you look at the price of water, electricity, and trash, and you're down even more - perhaps $200 a month (in the summer at least).  With wood heat, preferably free from my woodlot :-)  you've knocked even more money off per month.  So what I am getting at is that, yes, living in the country is cheaper per month, but buying all that land to being with is a very high expense. 

So, getting land.  I could compromise on one of the other two, such as less acreage, or moving father away.  Less acreage is exactly how I got into this predicament to begin with, so I doubt I'll go that route.  Moving farther away has already been ruled out from my dear wife, who doesn't like driving that far to begin with.  So, time to either start saving money, or find a good deal on land / house building price.

Recently I found 4.3 acres in Venus, Texas, which was exactly in the area I wanted, and was very cheap.  It also wasn't that far of a drive.  .  I could have pulled the trigger, but I didn't, because it would have meant compromising on land size, and the land was north-sloping.  It was really hard not to buy that land, but, I'm glad I at least stuck to my "goals."  I let out a big sigh, but I'm not sure if it was relief or regret.  Dang that land was cheap.

Until another day...

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Corn & Furrows

I bought "Delectable" hybrid corn, and when I planted about 50 seeds in 3 rows, I was expecting nice results.  I got nothing (okay, I got 1).  What a letdown! 

Now, I'd like to say this is some type of experiment I had come up with, but what it actually was, was just bad gardening.  I am learning gardening, for the most part, from books and the internet.  So when I heard to plant X" apart in rows spaced Y" apart, I did just that.  I planted something like this:

Now, 3 weeks later with 1 single seeds sprout, I dug it all up and re-planted, but this time, I planted at the bottom of the "trenches" I had dug - so,like this:

Now, obviously my rows were nowhere near that high, but I had to use those exaggerated pictures to show you what I meant.  I have found that the bottom picture (planting in the furrows) worked better.  It seemed to retain water better, and did so without flooding the roots, because eventually the rows flattened out, and water didn't set on the bed.

Anyway, maybe that info can help anyone else.  Perhaps the seeds being raised up on the row-tops, they just needed a lot more precipitation than what they were getting (which should have been plenty, but whatever). 

Thursday, April 21, 2011


I want to post.  Boy, do I want to post.  I just can't.

"Here bring your wounded hearts, here tell your anguish; Earth has no sorry that Heaven cannot heal."