The Road Home

The Road Home
There is no place like home.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Back to School

It's time for school to start in our neck of the woods which means I will be going back to work. This will be my 30th year teaching special education in a public school system. My experience covers a wide geography - from urban to remote bush Alaska - and many, many children. Working with these children has taught me much over the years and this profession has allowed us to live in some of the most challenging, adventurous places. I continue to be blessed with employment that I enjoy.

Because of my return to work, our blogging will decrease somewhat, but we will still be here. The usual adjustments are being made around the farm to accommodate more time away from home.

We are drying up one of our does to lessen the milk load. Velvet is producing less milk than One Stripe or Ivory so she was the likely candidate. It has been easy to switch to milking her every other day without any distention of her udder to worry about. Now I will switch to just checking on her to see if I need to take any more milk at all, or if she will just reabsorb what milk she has.

Time to tend to and process the garden will be squeezed in after work. The fall garden will hopefully be able to tend to itself for the most part. The weather is different this year with lows in the 60's in August. It almost feels like winter will come early, which is strange for this part of the world. We usually have temperatures around 100, with lows in the low 80's or upper 70's. If the frosts come early, I will do some more experimenting with the frost cloth I used in the spring for the late frosts. It may extend our harvest of winter squashes.

The winter squashes and pumpkins are growing well. I got about two thirds of the corn stalks moved to mulch behind the winter squash when I ran into a pile of fire ants. So the rest of the mulch will have to wait for them to move on after I disturbed them.


Today I got the sugar beets planted since the ground finally dried out enough to work. 


I tucked the snap peas in between the two volunteer tomatoes and the volunteer
  jalapeno on this partial piece of stock panel. It all fit just right. I think I will plant the carrots around the tomatoes after I can till in a few more weeds. The potatoes haven't come up yet. We will just have to wait and see how that goes. 

Like many folks this summer, we haven't had many tomatoes and I haven't been able to try my hand at making tomato sauce as I had hoped. But there will be another time and another garden, if all goes well with the world. We still have some peppers, okra, purple hull peas, squash and cucumbers to pick and process, not to mention the milk and eggs from the goats and chickens, so there will be more than enough to do.

So for the last day of summer vacation, I got some things planted in the garden, canned 9 pints of purple hull peas, made a quart of fresh salsa and cooked up 3 or 4 pints of green beans for a casserole to take to church tomorrow for lunch.

And for everyone that is following Frank's radio communications posts, we will soon be explaining the new radio he installed in the car today. It is the same radio we use for a VHF/UHF base station. This will help standardize what we are using and give me more power in the vehicle to reach home when I need to. We feel effective means of communication are more important than ever.

Until next time - Fern

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