Burning Out

I sat musing today after once again wielding power tools, building something that should have been simple but wasn’t, how hard it is to get off the ground anymore.  Prior to this place, I built out the landscaping and urban farm in the city.  Thousands of pounds of rock, lumber and topsoil was moved.  Of course I was ten years younger then and it didn’t feel nearly as painful.  I also recovered a lot faster.  2 and 1/3 years have passed since we bought JAZ Farm.  It was a total mess and I remember sitting on the front porch wondering if I had the physical stamina to actually make this place into what it has become.  I will likely take on the project to install the rainwater harvesting tanks but other than that, when this greenhouse is built, I HAVE to stop with all this heavy shit.  The question of the day isn’t, “are you sore from all the work?” which of course the answer is yes, but rather, “are you NOT in pain today?”  The answer is invariably NO!!

This is what it has taken to build the temple.  My hips are dust, my knees ache constantly and my right shoulder is beat senseless from hauling everything from chicken feed, to fence posts, to bags of concrete.  Every weekend for over 2 years! I haven’t shot my bow in years and my telescope is calling my name.

What keeps me going is the vision of being able to wake up and make breakfast with eggs from our hens, onions, peppers and potatoes from our garden, brew my morning coffee and wander out and walk through the greenhouse, sitting for awhile enjoying the green around me.  I’d eventually move on, taking some time to sit and watch the chickens before doing some weeding in the outdoor garden.  I long to be able to get out my telescope and look forward to a night of observing rather than wondering if I can even stay awake until sunset and then giving it all up before I even get started.  In short, I want to be done with the construction and simply be here with our homestead – our temple to right living and all that being self-sustaining can mean in this day and age.

Sure there will always be projects or repairs needing to be done but they can be hired out, or done over longer periods of time than the whirlwind we have undertaken since December of 2012.  We are so proud of this place and everything it has become and what it represents but I am burned out.  I don’t WANT to learn a new construction skill.  I don’t WANT to have to read up on every disease a pig can get or how to tension a fence, or fight with suppliers of greenhouses, top soil, seed drillers, and all contractors that say they will do something and not show.  I want to wake up and think, I’m going to go walk around Eden.  After I do that…. who knows.   The day is coming soon.  2 more months of hard work and then the rest will become more normal.  Solar panels to go off grid – somebody else.  Install a wood stove – somebody else.  Hook up rainwater harvesting cisterns – yours truly.  Replace the shower kits – after having replaced the toilets and sinks myself – somebody else.  Its time to let JAZ Farm produce what it was designed to produce – peace, produce, pigs and poultry.  Amen

Squash and Such 2014 IMG_3584 IMG_3742 IMG_3744 photo-3 Ash tree 2014  IMG_3568 IMG_3556 IMG_3552

The New Girls About Ready to Meet the Experienced Girls

The new chicks went out into the coop last week after living under the seedling tables for 2 weeks.  They need about one more week of growth and acclimatization so when the non-fenced meeting happens and the re-establishment of the pecking order commences they won’t get beaten up too badly.  Because nothing is easy, we have to round them up into dog crates on the eve of their introduction and wait for the big girls to go to bed on the roosts.  At night, when the adults are sleeping, the theory is to introduce them into the sleeping quarters while everyone is asleep.  When the adults wake up and because chickens are stupid, there is supposed to be much less upheaval than if we simply open the gate and let them in together.  We shall see.  There are already a couple of the new ones that could put some serious whoopass on some of the older girls.  If nothing else it will be entertaining!

newbies on the perch 1 newbies on the perch 2 New girls outside 2 2015 Dot 2015 IMG_3887 IMG_3883 IMG_3849 IMG_3882 IMG_3869

Everything Always Happens At Once

So not only did we get confirmation that the greenhouse has shipped, our feed store also tracked down some pigs for us.  It has been quite an ordeal and I had kind of written it off.  There is a very serious disease infecting pigs across the country and it did in the first litter we had reservations for.  Not wanting to lose an organic feed order, our feed supply store tracked down 3 weaners and they are delivering them next Wednesday!  We are hurrying to finish up the pen and are saving up our back to unload 2000 lbs of feed into our basement as well.  Other than the electric wire to keep them from tearing up the fences we are done.  Bring on the porkers!

Pig feeder 2015       Pig condo 2015

T minus one week!


T minus 5 months!!


The Greenhouse is shipping the Greenhouse is shipping!!

After many months and much frustration the greenhouse is coming in sections next week!  I took a chance and ordered in the compost for the outdoor beds and the topsoil for the greenhouse beds and emailed these pictures to the manufacturer.  The day of the soil delivery we got an email letting us know that the greenhouse plastic and hardware will arrive early next week and the frame a couple of days behind!  I am rounding up able bodied humans (my son and a friend of his) to come assemble the frame over Easter weekend.  It will be such a relief to have this thing out of my hair and useable!  Was worried we would end up in court because that was going to be my final straw!  Between the compost and topsoil the total order was 60 yards.  Just remember the next time you are at The Home Depot buying that little bag of compost that it is a gateway purchase.  It could end up like this!

compost 1 2015    compost 2 2015