It’s cold outside for the about millionth day now. My mornings consist of helping Hubby get ready for work, then wandering out to the barn to feed all the animals. I’m really getting tired of waddling out there like a sausage because of all the extra layers I have to wear. I’m also tired of freezing my buns off because I feel to lazy to put on said layers somedays. It’s either take 10 minutes to dress up, or move really fast to get the stuff done and get back inside. Lately I’ve been opting for moving really fast.
Until today when the chicken waterer decided to have a freak on me, part way out to the barn, and came apart spilling a gallon of precious water all over my already icy walk way and all over my pant legs. Talk about cold! It was a “hey how are ya here’s your hay gotta go!” type of morning.
To help my mind believe that spring will begin again, I’ve taken some time to update my homesteading binder. I wrote up all my information on Jackson and Oliver, went over the goals that we had written down for 2014, wrote up what worked and what didn’t, and started my 2015 goals.
This year is going to be the big one. The first real year where we attempt to use homesteading as a way to actually support ourselves. I’m pretty nervous, but also tired of staring out the window at my sleeping garden, all mulched and ready to go (besides the 3 feet of snow ontop of it), and wondering how it will play out. I want to get out there now!
2015 Goals and Ambitions
- Have a successful kidding season with Phoebe
- Get a hook and small tie up chain or dog leash to tie up goat for milking – the sleeping bench we have in the goat stall is the perfect height, so instead of worrying about building a milking stand and milking room/area we’ve decided to just put a hook in the wall to tie the goat up for milking. We’ll also put another hook in to hold a grain bucket. This makes sense in my head, hopefully it will actually work.
- Actually milk Phoebe – easier said than done.
- Successfully breed Sophie to Oliver for fall babies – Sophie didn’t seem to settle after her multiple visits with Jack. I’m really hoping she’s being a pregnancy ninja and is just fooling me but as it stands right now she appears to be open. (You can read about our breeding experiences here and here)
- Make a separate shelter and pasture for the boys
- Make at least 2 more paddocks for grazing
- Get 5 more layers to replace the ones we lost
- Successfully introduce said new chickens into our existing flock
- Sell more eggs
- Grow the majority of our produce ourselves
- Plant a strawberry patch
- Pray that our blackberry bushes survived the winter (they were planted pretty late in the season. I’m hoping they got some roots established before the ground froze)
- Successfully transplant my little apple trees (that I started from seed and are happily growing in a sunny window)
- Seed pastures for better grazing
- Get our farm truck going
- Get the tractor home
- Put up enough food for next winter
- Look into raising our own meat – Hubby claims he wants to be a vegetarian…until dinner rolls around and he wants meat. I would like to try my hand at meat rabbits for a source of cheap and easy to raise meat. He doesn’t want to eat a bunny. I can’t make enough room in the budget for buying meat. We shall see how this plays out. (Yes the vegetarian is trying to convince the meat eater to allow the raising and killing of meat. Makes perfect sense.)
- Learn how to make cheese
- Learn how to pressure can
- Replace some of the windows on the house
- Reside the house with aluminum siding
- Get a water filtration system so we can actually drink the water, take a bubble bath, do laundry, and all the other things people with good water take for granted.