Savage Farming

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Rainy winter day

Many showers blew through today. (For my friend Del, I should say "Many showers blew threw today")

But we still managed to get some stuff done. Mostly just clean-up in the shop and my barn. I hope to rip through the mess in that barn and get it prepared as a nice space for visitors, but that's probably wishful thinking. Then again, inspiration sometimes manifests amazing things.

Didn't get the big greenhouse blown up today, too much wind. Takes a fairly still day to safely erect an air-inflated greenhouse.

Well, not much else to report. Hope y'all had some laughs and good food today.

Sad morning, rejoicing

Been listening to Uncle Dennis' funeral from Dumas, Ar. and I'm reminded of just how lucky we are to live in a country where we're free to worship as our souls are called. I think it was my uncle Ben speaking and he reminded us that even in sadness we have reason to rejoice.

It's a lovely morning here, a few clouds brushing the top of Fielder mountain. The congregation in Dumas are singing sweetly and mom's birds are busy at the feeder.

I'm just through with my first little chore, did the dishes so mom and dad could take it easy when they get back from town. The weather's good so I suppose dad and I will tackle some more greenhouse work after they get back. I'm gonna take advantage of the short lull to get some reading done. Can't decide if I want to go with "The Triumph of God's Love" or "Doubt". Maybe a little of both.

Hope your day is touched by sweetness and light.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Good night, good morning

Got a full 9 hours of sleep for once, nice! A good, healthy breakfast and a little reading sent me right out to prune apples. Dad was cleaning up the shop when mom came out for a walk. I joined them and Sparky for about a 3/4 mile stroll. It was really nice, a tiny shower caught us half-way through but stopped shortly. Pruned a bit more then came in for a short tea break.

Trying to figure out what is pressing to do next. Kinda wish it'd rain again so I could get some reading and computer work done. Dad is sorting through some of his old possessions, deciding what to through away, give away or sell. Mom has her leg up and some heat on her knee, she needs to do that on these showery days to keep her arthritis in check.

Hoping y'all have a great day.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Monday showers

Just got back from a quick jaunt down the road with mom, dad and Sparky. Big raindrops started splattering down right at the end.

Dad and I broke out the seed boxes and started sorting for type and age. Had a real score when we found a box from last year with 1000 big beef tomato seeds, eclipse zucchini, lemon and slicing cucumbers. Another small box had all the watermelon seed and we also have most all the cantaloupe type seeds we need. We've still got to spend about 300$ on corn and a little more on a few other assorted things. Still we saved a bunch buying all that other stuff last year. Unforeseen foresight. Little things like that can really improve a guy's mood.

Looks like I need to fill mom's bird feeder. Maybe I can find a hole in the showers.

Hope your day brings you luck and joy.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Rainbow Sunday

A lovely rainbow just appeared over our vineyard. The shower is gone now but the beauty of it lingers in my mind.

Been struggling a little with my peace of mind this morning. Questions and confidence hover in a willful suspension of comforting platitude. Realities cold hand prods me with eventualities I seek to avoid and obligations I have postponed for too long. Conflicts of immediate interest and planning tumble over my natural lassitude and dedication to other pursuits of mind and purpose. A short night of sleep probably doesn't help either.

We lost Uncle Dennis yesterday. My prayers are going out to comfort Aunt Bonnie and her family. I suppose I should be more focused on that and less on my mental drama.

My cousin Phil and family will be stopping by later today for a visit. Wish they didn't have to drive so far. Bad enough they had to fly from Mississippi to Spokane but that's a long haul to make from there to here and back again in a few days.

Hope all of you find the day peaceful and fulfilling.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Great day's work

Worked hard enough to make my back ache, hoorah?

We got a lot done today despite the late start. Cleaned up the back yard some more, rototilled part of the early garden. I pruned and sprayed all 3 peach trees. Well, 1 is a nectarine technically. Dad had a great day, only 1 or 2 spells of fatigue. We'll each sleep well tonight.

It was just lovely today, with the sun warm enough to make me crave barbecued hot dogs. The ol' Osprey has returned, shrieking around the neighborhood for a couple hours while we cleaned up. The smell of bark and chainsaw oil brought the scene together for a perfect Oregon moment.

Hope you all had a day as fine or better.

I'm still a slacker

Was hoping to start getting an early start but it's cold and frozen out there and nothing is really pressing today. So I'm nerding out on the computer. Thanks to Rae Ann I tried Facebook this week and it is really wasting my time! but I love getting in contact with old friends.

Today's work will be pruning and spraying the peach trees, pruning apples, more clean-up probably saw up some scrap wood for the woodstove. We might get really lucky and blow up the air inflated greenhouse. If so I'll put up a pic of that, it's so cool. Never the same in photos but I can't resist trying to capture it.

Gotta go try and baby-step my way closer to actually being a man and doing my work.

There's a world of wonder around us always ready to dazzle and amaze. Let the good things come to you.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Great day, so-so work

Didn't get as much done as we'd hoped but it was a lovely day. No sun but no rain either. Gary came by with his 1 person pots-hole digger and "we" got the holes for the greenhouse finished. Way easier than using the tractor mounted one. Especially since Gary did all the work ;-) Big thanks to him.

Dad and I also got a lot of clean-up done again. Dad finished his 5th tray of tomato transplants. That makes about 350 plants in all, not a bad start for the year.

Not much else to report, I'd usually summon the energy for a political rant or find some interesting link to point out right about here but my biorhythms are probably off right now.

Y'all be heartful of peace and mindful of happy.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Work day vacillation

Pretty good work day, got started late because everything was frozen outside. Dad transplanted tomatoes into pony-packs while it was cold. Looks like he'll have three 72 packs finished shortly. A good start to the tomato season, if all goes well we'll be picking by July 1.

Rolled wire next, finishing that job in last year's late tomato field. Still about 14 three hundred foot rows to go (by 12 wires per row) many miles of wire actually.

Then we came in to hook up a harrow to rip our early tomato field. But the tractor wouldn't start. Dad's heart just sank, and it wasn't great for mine either. We spent a half hour running it down to the fuel pump. $1200 or so to fix that. Before we gave up, we checked one last time to make sure the fuel wasn't leaving the pump by removing the out line. As we cranked it, a bunch of air escaped the pump and suddenly the engine started! Hoorah!

Now dad is out ripping the early garden (cukes, squash and other stuff too will go there) so we can 'til it tomorrow.

A good day, all in all. Hope you all have one as fine or better.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

insomnia

Well, I haven't really tried to go to sleep, but it's still insomnia.

Had a great day, got 5 old cars hauled off from the farm here and did a bunch of clean-up in the backyard. Dad was in rare good form, only got fatigued once right around lunch. A good nap took care of that while I was running errands in Rogue River.

Gonna crash soon, just doing some last minute computer stuff.

Y'all have a delightful and refreshing night full of wonderful dreams.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

how beautiful

Ol' Mt. Fielder was really lovely today, just had to share a pic.

Good night's rest

Gratitude for a good night's sleep was the first thing on my mind this morning. It is absolutely amazing what that does for the body and mind.

I was out at Mark and Tracy's until about 10 last night. Wish I could say it was all work but we talked for a long time. I am so lucky to have such good friends. We also did make some good progress on Tracy's website. Go here: Chicy Hair-Ums pet Jewelry to check it out, especially if you forgot to get something for your girlfriend's cat or dog on Valentine's day ;-)

We're all enjoying the beginning of a lazy day of rest here. The weather looks right for a burn day in Jackson county but when I mentioned it mom said "No! we're having a lazy day today." And no one disagreed.

Sparky is asleep on his little bed under his heat lamp. His nose is twitching just a bit. Some dream of sniffing out cats or squirrels probably.

We've decided to set our alarms tomorrow morning and start on our early farming schedule. So many things to do, every hour earlier we start is less crush come the May 15th start of transplanting, not to mention the April 15th corn planting date.

The sun is out and a cloud shadow is blowing across the lower ridge of Fielder Mountain. Just a lovely, lovely day.

Peace and happiness to you all.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Good day after all

Didn't get a lot done today but did get to see the nieces, Charley and Randie. They brought hand-made Valentine's gifts from Charley's daughters for me and "Grandma & Grandpa chicken". Cute little luv-bugs made from pixie-sticks, craft paper and pipe cleaners.

Kyle worked out great today. We didn't have a lot for him to do but we got a lot of wires untied and rolled up. For those who don't know, I do some website design for Kyle's mom and I went to school with his dad, Mark.

Dad and I spent a lot of the day talking while we rolled wire, hashing out stuff. I'm massively overwhelmed by the threat of having to run this farm by my self but mom and dad both keep reminding me to have faith and know that the lord won't ask more of me than I can do. It was easy to have faith last year, or at least confident purpose. Now it isn't such a simple thing. It isn't just doing the work, it's all the details and drive and purpose that dad provides which I have inner doubts about me being able to do.

Thank god dad is still feeling well. We'll take every day we can with deep gratitude and a flowing love for life. What else can we do?

Y'all have a good evening, a refreshing night, and sweet dreams.

Happy Valentine's Day

Somewhere in this world is a lady who I could love and share my life with. For some reason we haven't met yet and we might not ever. But I will still take this opportunity to tell her I love her and to have a happy Valentine's Day. Sorry I don't know where to send the card. Be well, lovey.

Tough night last night, bad dreams and only 6 hours of sleep. Stress from the last couple weeks catching up with me. Funny how well I slept in the RV when we were in Portland. But I was using sleep aids and exhaustion then.

Hoping to have a good day of work ahead today. Maybe if I get physically tired enough I will sleep well.

Mom said that dad had a rough night too, weird dreams etc. probably a lot like mine.

Sorry to be such a downer, will wish you all a fine day and hope to write later when I'm feeling better.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Friday whew!

Strangely tiring day. Emotionally stressful. Not really sure why.

Had visitors from Scio this afternoon. Tom Hamlin and his wife. Nice people.

Got some of Travis' good dry madrone burning in the stove. A little comfort goes a long ways towards soothing the aches of the day.

Didn't get much done today. Some research, a little clean-up. Had a great 40 minute long conversation with my brother. Dang! If only I'd realized sooner that he's great to talk to.

I'm just sort of achy and sore. 42 years starting to remind me.

Kyle is coming over to help around the farm a bit tomorrow. A chance at a little impromptu education. Fortunately there's plenty of work for him to learn from. If I'm really lucky Travis might show up too and then we could split into teams of 2 and really get some stuff done.

Praying you all a wonderful day and a healing night.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Strange Thursday noon

Well, it's almost noon. Feels strange, maybe because I'm home alone. Or it could be the Easy Listening music too. {*} There, switched it to smooth jazz. "September" is playing.

It was a short night last night, went to sleep late and got up early.

Had a great breakfast at Powderhorn Cafe with Del this morning. Biscuits and gravy! And of course more encouraging conversation. Keeping my eyes open for a higher power.

Nephew Travis dropped off some firewood a little while ago. Had a couple chuckles with him. Mom and dad left for dad's infusion around then and Travis took off too. So my chores are doing the dishes and stacking some firewood. I suppose I should feel lonely but I really don't.

Momentarily suspended on the software/webpage design front. Gotta make a visit before the next move manifests but I'm having trouble arranging a break in the action around here.

No rain but no sun either here today. Kinda gray but still lovely.

Everybody have some happiness! Despite it all...

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

What government is good for...

"Maybe Too Little, Always Too Late" is a funny article which points out that "the economy will improve even if the government does nothing."

I would have to qualify that as "especially if the government does nothing" but hey, that's just me.

Melancholy morning

Woke up feeling a little down this morning. Some weird dreams I don't recall well, that often leaves me feeling out of sorts. I think that some of our future financial challenges are weighing on me. Right now things are ok, but I'm just aware that more medical bills will be coming in. There isn't a lot of software work right now and it's quite a while until the farm can produce any sort of cash flow. On top of that, we'll have to spend a fair amount of money before we can even get the farming operation rolling. But I suppose that's why they call it "having faith" otherwise it'd just be knowing.

The land is mottled with snow this morning. Sis is probably stuck at home because the Sexton summit pass is closed. Trucks are backed up all the way to Barton Rd. Sure hope she got to sleep in, it'd just be good for her.

It's pretty out there but it's also really cold. Don't feel much like walking or doing any chores in that mush and slush. Deeply and profoundly grateful that I have the choice at the moment. Will have to take out some compost and do a little clean-up later but it can wait now. Think I'll read for a while.

Y'all have a super day and find happiness in the trivial things.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Doing the math

800 billion dollar stimulus package divided by 300 million Americans (approx) equals about $2,600 dollars each. That is both what it will cost us and what we would each get if the stimulus money were divided equally between us. That means a $5,200 dollar swing across the board. Lost sales and unrecovered taxes.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Sunny Monday

Still lots of clouds and a little frost around but the sun is definitely making an impression.

Dad and the uncles went off to see our old homestead at 222 Ewe Creek Rd. The A-frame my father built. Mom was busy making lunch and I just didn't have the courage to go see the place where I grew up. Plus I've got a number of my own chores to look after.

It's been real neat hanging around with the uncles. I'm hoping that the sun will stay out and that before they leave we can blow up our air-inflated greenhouse. It's just such a fun structure which I think they'd find lots of potential use for.

Anyways, gonna go do some of those chores I was bragging about.

Y'all have a fine and felicitous day.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Saturday report on Sunday

Had a great day of family visiting yesterday. Bro, sis, bro-in-law, uncles, dad, mom, cats and dog. We sent the post hole digger home with sis & her hubby. That was fun loading it, almost safe for once with 5 working men coordinating the action. Gotta love a really slow moving tractor for having to work around. Still dangerous but almost entirely avoidable and stoppable.

Friday, February 06, 2009

It never rains but it pours

For my sister anyways.

Tough enough having health problems on this side of the family, she's been faced with the failing health of her father-in-law as well. He's a lot worse off then our dad is, mesothelioma got him bad from when he worked in the W.W.2 shipyards. He's suffering now and the medics aren't being very cooperative either.

So if anybody's got a spare prayer, send it my sis and brother-in-law's way. Just a little peace and grace will help them a bunch.

Love ya sis. Be well, sleep well. And a big hug to my biggest brother.

And all you other folks, strength and peace to you too.

I just had to

I suppose the ladies might like this more but I just found the idea so appallingly silly that I had to try it. Teenage girls will mostly enjoy this service, it's called cornify and it will rainbow-and-unicorn any page you want it to. Just drag the bookmark link into the top of your browser and then cornify any page you want.

You can try a sample here with this link:
Cornify

Hit it repeatedly for dense silliness.

Pancreatic cancer Twine

Twine is an interesting new collaborative search site. I've put together a bunch of pancreatic cancer cure sites there, if you're interested check it out here:
Pancreatic cancer cure Twine

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Thursday, February 05, 2009

fine evening

We just got through eating some delightful fish that mom fried up for supper.

Dad's infusion went well but took longer than expected. Dad's white blood cell count was down a bit but that just proves that something is going on. If it drops again when they take blood Wednesday then they might skip a chemo treatment.

Uncle's Arnold and Doug from Mississippi are coming out to visit tomorrow night through Tuesday. Should be a load of fun.

Y'all have a good night now.

lovely day, no rain

Just got through speaking with my friend Del. Trying to figure out when we can arrange breakfast again. Kinda hard to guess with my disarrayed schedule.

Mom and dad are running late from their chemo infusion appointment. Mom left me a message that they had to see a doctor (probably about the new port-a-catheter) and give blood so they didn't get started with the infusion before 3:15.

Heading back out now to move the tractor and clean-up a little more. Dad and I spent a good chunk of the morning pulling up plastic in the field where we plan to plant early tomatoes in a greenhouse before spring. Dad got a little breathless, but that was probably from just being out of shape not anemia from his chemo just yet.

The sun is poking through clouds and lighting our big oak tree with patches of gray, white and green.

Praying you all a day of peace and happiness.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Another good day

Despite the gray.

It was cloudy after a short bit of sun for our morning walk. Dad and I got started on some more clean-up. I ran the bush-hog and dad rolled drip tubing. I felt much, much better once I started working. My fears and worries receded into the necessity of good, honest work.

Some folks who were in service with mom and dad at Rancho Cucamonga in L.A. stopped by to visit. Delbert and Lilian Unruh from Scio. Sweet, sweet people. They brought us a giant cinnamon roll from Heaven On Earth bakery near Glendale. Wow! was it good, we decided that pretty much ruined our dinner. So we're gonna just pick and piece supper tonight.

Tomorrow dad goes in for his second chemo. So far he still feels really good so despite the reality a tiny grain of hope keeps surfacing. We'll see how he feels after this next round. One thing is sure, he's got a lot of prayers coming his way. Thank god for such wonderful people. It doesn't resolve the issues facing us but it does give comfort in the face of tough times.