Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Goat-napping update

Today we are on the lookout for a crappy white, early 90s ford stepside truck with a red camper top on it, 2 young looking guys with dark hair. No plate number, it was too far away and they took off too fast after they dumped the goats out on the side road, about a half mile from the farm. I got all my goats but one back! My neighbor spotted them and quickly informed me my goats were on the side of the road and headed my way. From the intel I have gathered, Monday night and Tuesday night were the ramadan feast and goat is the menu. A nice man I spoke to from Paducah, Ky (big goat buyer and seller) informed me he loses Boers from his operation every year at this time and I should expect my goats to show up at auction quickly because they're milk goats. So, I canvased every single auction barn within 150 miles yesterday with descriptions and pictures of the goats(yes, I have tons of pictures of my goats) plus the local sale papers, rural farm stores etc. Apparently, the guys that stole my goats can't tell the difference between milk goats and meat goats. The goat I didn't get back was a pygmie cross doe. Lucky was not harmed. We think the truck is local and the sheriffs dept is looking into it. We need to find that truck. We'll find it, half the countryside will know about it by nightfall today.

I feel sick. I'm relieved but I'm angry too. I'm happy I got my Lucky back but I'm still very angry. I nurture and love my herd of goats, gentle them down, work with them, feed them, tend to their needs, play with them every day and all it did was make it easy for some jerk with a feed bucket to walk right up, shake the bucket and steal them from me in broad daylight. My side gate now has a chain and lock on it. It will make it a hassle for me and anyone with bolt cutters will still get thru it but maybe it will slow the next guys that think my goats will make an easy meal down just a little...

Monday, August 29, 2011

I been Robbed

Seriously. Today, somehow, my entire goat herd has been stolen, including Lucky goat. Sometime between 5pm and 7pm. Nobody here heard a sound, we were around the farm all day, front door was open, dog laying on the porch and all the goats are missing. No where to be found. The goats were laying on the burn pile at 5pm when the boys lit it on fire and when we went out to milk the cow and feed, the goats were gone. Not one single time in the 2 years I have had these goats have they ever been more than 150 yards from the barn. Lucky has never been not on the porch come dusk. Tonight, the barn lot is quiet and empty. 9 goats, all gone.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Lookie lookie!

Of course I'm excited, I like snakes! I found this little beauty in the barn, same spot I found that awesome rate snake a couple months ago. I am thinking this is some sort of corn snake (rat snake) but I am waiting on the snake man to reply with a proper identification. of course, I had to catch it and play with it for a while and of course, bring it in the house so I can take a couple pictures! This one is super docile, it's a keeper!

Life at a Standstill

Well, I was kind of hoping I'd have something good to talk about by now but we're still just hanging on around here. One day at a time. While the heat of the day has lessened, the humidity level is still making life a sweaty, uncomfortable experience. Goober cow has done her job well, she ate down all the grass and stomped the weeds in the garden. Now I'm just waiting on the neighbor to get around to turning it all over. I'm going to move the critter pens elsewhere on the farm and plant more of a fall garden in the rich, manure filled soils. The wait just kills me but all my equipment is broken so I don't have a choice.

Oh, we, the boy, the young man that is staying here now to help me and myself, we got Spud gentled down some and got a band on his family pride. It was actually harder than I expected it to be but I got the deed done. Much less traumatic than how Lucky goat got to be neutered. Poor Spud, at least he didn't have to find out the hard way that it's better to be born a girl than a boy on the farm.

The easter egg hunt continues. I know those darn chickens are laying eggs. it sure would be nice if I could find them from day to day! One day soon tho, I will have enough money left over to buy a roll or 2 of wire and some sheet tin roofing and we won't have to hunt for eggs again.

The lawn tractor is still not running but we spent a day on the back roads picking up cans so we could pick up some stuff that will clean out all the gunk from the biodiesel. Hopefully, it will help with the problem. I have never been less of a supporter of biodiesel than I am right now. It is complete garbage and a waste of a good food crop! The orange goo that grows in it from the soybean oil absolutely causes me mountains of problems not to mention the poor fuel mileage. What a waste of good soybeans!

I've been doing a bit of seed saving these past few days. I have sacks of tobacco seed drying on the fireplace along with okra, sweet pepper, hot pepper, tomato and corn meal corn. I dehydrated another 2 quarts worth of sweet pepper to cook with. I so enjoy the flavor sweet pepper gives to about anything.

I found an interesting article on Drudge Report last night, it's about Illinois unemployment. It seems that our wonderful governor (I didnt vote for him, actually despise the man) had this brilliant idea of raising state revenues by increasing the income tax rate. Well, it's working out really well (yah right). Not only did Gov. Quinn anger several large businesses/corporations in Illinois, a few of them even packed up and left the state. others have actively reduced their work forces bringing the unemployment rate for the state up above 9% with a total of 89,000 jobs lost since January. The link wouldn't open this morning for me to review and highlight it, maybe it will work later today. I can say for sure that the opportunity for a decent wage in southern Illinois is just about non existent. Gas stations, walmart and fast food is about the only opportunity for employment unless you are a CNA, LPN or RN. Even then, you won't find a decent living wage. The local electric conglomerate is seeking to raise it's rates, again, and the cost of fuel is obnoxiously high as well. Don't forget about the consistently rising cost of commercially produced foods. Even at a rise of 2 or 3 cents a week, it still hits you. The urge to grow more food is very strong now.

So, now I'm off to dream about fixing things around the farm and increasing productivity.....

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Insult to Injury

Mother Nature just won't give me a break this year. Not only does she whoop on my garden with her inhuman heat and humidity, she's got to whip up nasty little storm cells out of nowhere and knock the crud out of my shade trees. This pitiful little farm is starting to look pretty darn rough!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Stupidity at its Finest

I know it's not surprising that a member of our federal government would do or say something stupid but this man, Tom Vilsack, is a complete moron. Who is Tom Vilsack you ask? Well, Tom is the secretary of Agriculture for the good ole' US of A. That's right, Tom Vilsack is working hard to strengthen the American agricultural economy, to revitalize rural communities, to protect and conserve our natural resources, and to provide a safe, sufficient and nutritious food supply for the American people. Because USDA's work affects every American everyday, we are proud to be the 'Every Way, Every Day' USDA. That's right, he's the jackass in charge of the USDA.

Mr. Vilsack is on video saying that the federal food stamp program is an economic stimulus. Tom says "Well, obviously, it's putting people to work. Which is why we're going to have some interesting things in the course of the forum this morning. Later this morning, we're going have a press conference with Secretary Mavis and Secretary Chu to announce something that's never happened in this country -- something that we think is exciting in terms of job growth. I should point out, when you talk about the SNAP program or the food stamp program, you have to recognize that it's also an economic stimulus. Every dollar of SNAP benefits generates $1.84 in the economy in terms of economic activity. If people are able to buy a little more in the grocery store, someone has to stock it, package it, shelve it, process it, ship it. All of those are jobs. It's the most direct stimulus you can get in the economy during these tough times."

Okay Tom, whatever you've been smoking, you need to quit it, RIGHT NOW. You should be ashamed of yourself for being so completely idiotic. As a matter of fact, I think you need to be punished for your stupidity. How about you spend 1 month working for minimum wage either stocking those grocery shelves or working in the factory that produces those grocery store products. Also, you should immediately return your government paycheck because you are entirely too stupid to deserve it.

Welcome to the new world folks, this is how our politicians view the rest of America. Don't worry tho, there's going to be plenty of minimum wage jobs available that the government is going to create for each and every one of us so we can all sign up for food stamps in our poverty and further stimulate our economy with them!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Quiet Days

It's been quiet here while we're just trying to hang on. Every piece of equipment I own is broken with no money to fix any of it, so not much is getting accomplished. I have gradually been trying to wean daisy calf but she is proving to be smarter than the average cow. Her latest trick is jumping the field fence that surrounds the property perimeter next to the garden where Goober cow has been penned up for the last few days. I did manage to get a gallon of milk before Daisy figured out how to get back to Momma. This morning, there she was, right there in the pen with that "who, me?" look on her face and Goobers milk bag was empty.

I've been salvaging what I can from the goat chewed tobacco plants and the bag full of seed pods is from just one plant. All the corn meal corn is now harvested and I'm working on getting it dried the rest of the way so I can store it for use later. I've got a 5 gallon bucket full of hot peppers for the dehydrator too. The free roaming chickens are eating all the tomatoes on me and the easter egg hunt is ongoing. I know they are laying eggs somewhere, I just can't find them. The farm is just a mess and this year is a complete failure on the self sustained side. But, that's life. Even the best of us gets knocked down a notch every now and then...

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Solar Flares and Meteor Showers

I'm a bit of a nerd when it comes to science and the earth. I like to know what's happening in our universe and I get some really great info and see pictures of the most amazing stuff over at the Space Weather site. It's a sight I check out just about every day. With all the stresses and distractions around here, I had forgotten all about the Perseid Meteor Shower. Thanks Space Weather for reminding me!

This site is great for knowing all about what the sun is doing and the activity coming from the sun that can affect our world in devastating ways. I just wish I could see all those awesome auroras instead of having to enjoy them thru pictures. The latest class X solar flare is a little disturbing....

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Farm Life Early August

I had to harvest the cornmeal corn today way ahead of schedule. I'm still working out how to finish drying it without having the problem continue that caused my early harvest.

Here's the problem... since the hubster got sick and put a serious dent in our finances, some of our farm projects, things that needed done to keep the farm productive and in good order, didn't get done. One of those projects was the goat enclosure, another was the chicken coop. Between the goats and the chickens, the garden is taking a huge hit. That hit will affect our food supply for the next year.

There's just some problems that ingenuity, creativity and imagination can't fix.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Salmonella Burgers and a Wreck

Whoops, poor fellow missed the one ditch only to lose the tandems in another. This is just off the end of my driveway, at the side road. It's the most excitement we've seen around here in months!

As you all know by now, I don't watch commercial broadcast television. So, I get all my news from around the internet and the local paper. One of the news feeds I like is Fox news. Today, there is a very nice to read article on the truth about how and why salmonella gets in ground turkey. Thank you Dr Seiegel, I love it when the truth gets written in main stream media!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

TEOWAWKI- New World Order

Here you go folks, this is what your America really looks like. This is what your government is up to- Raw Food Raid. Your tax dollars at work protecting all of us from the most dangerous thing on the planet. Raw milk.

On the heels of the biggest rip off of the American people in history (obamas debt hike charade) this move by our government is a clear declaration of war against freedom.

This is our country now. A country where you will be arrested for growing your own food, eating that food and sharing it. Don't even think about putting those evil vegetable plants in your front yard either. A country where you are arrested for feeding the homeless. A country where you can not have a lemonaide stand or give your neighbors home made bread or jelly.

Are you comfortable being controlled? Do you like having every aspect of your life dictated to you by your government? Get used to it because this is just the beginning. This will continue and get worse. Once the USDA uses the Dept of Transportation vie executive order to finish off the rest of the small farmers across the country by requiring them to be permitted as commercial drivers, eliminating anyone who does not have a commercial drivers license from operating farm equipment, requiring additional commercial permits and licenses for transporting their livestock and crops and a $750,000.00 liability insurance policy, our entire food supply will be under corporate/government control. Welcome to Agenda 21!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Todays Goings Ons

As I was contemplating earlier, it's hot here. Reaallly humid to go with it. I had to sit in the fan for a while after my brief outdoor adventure and set myself up a cutting board on a couple of buckets so I wouldnt have to be away from the fan while I cut up sweet peppers and tomatoes. I got everything prepared and ready to go before I walked away from the fan. My chopped sweet peppers are looking pretty good in the dehydrator and the sauce is simmering down nicely. All food I grew right here on the farm. Add in a little deer meat in the sauce and it will be ready to go.

Dripping Wet in 30 Seconds

That's what it took today, 30 seconds. A box came to me in the mail yesterday. A thoughtful blog reader sent me a sack of goat wormer. Thank you very much! So, after I scrubbed the kitchen from breakfast, I ventured out to worm the goats. They aren't too far away as they've all found a cool spot under the porch. Everyone but Spud the scaredycat got some wormer. While I was out there, I noticed the cow had tangled herself up (she's tied to a tree in the shade, 50' rope because she goes right for the hole in the fence every time she's loose) around a couple trees so I headed over to get rubbed on with the nubby horns and get her untangled so she can go where she wants to. That accomplished, I headed over to the weed infested and mostly scorched garden and picked a dozen Rutgers tomatoes to make a sauce for supper. Tie the gate to keep the goats out and back to the house dripping wet. I'll have to sit in front of the fan for a bit to cool off. Just that little bit of movement is enough to completely sap your energy in this horrible heat and humidity.

I haven't been doing much of anything these past few days. My energy level is zero. I've stopped the blood pressure medicine, it was making me woozie. I have been checking my bp several times a day and I am not suffering from high blood pressure. My heart has not pounded weird once since I've been home. But of course, it's the practicing medicine thing and not just a combination of heat, humidity and extreme stress. I just need another cup of coffee! LOL

I plan on making another trip to the disaster of a garden later this evening, the seed pods on the bug eaten tobacco plants need collected, the meal corn needs checked on, the kidney beans need picked, hot peppers should be good to be picked and I know I have some carrots out there still.......