Restarting

I’ve had to get a job, so any hours we have will be by appointment only once we get started again.  I’ve joined TOFGA, and we are looking at greenhouse ideas.  Strictly low budget.  I’m leaning towards a hoop house like we did with the shelters.

Ann adjusted fairly well to her new home, and Amy is happy as a clam.  She’s still skittish around me, but will come to me if Amy does.  However, she won’t let me touch her so I can’t feel for lamb movement.  I’ll have to get my son out to help me. We’re discussing going back and buying the other ewes she had for sale. The goats are still eating Amy’s wool, so a separate area is moving up the “must do” list.

Our neighbor put the land next to us up for sale.  This is the land we tried to buy, but he bought it first.  I’m hoping we can get a down payment together, and buy it when he drops the price in February.  It’s doubtful, but it won’t hurt to try.

We’re trying to decide how to lay out the chickens and turkeys in relation to the rest of the place.  We miss having our feathered friends and plan to replace them asap.  We’re okay on some eggs for now, but my soy-sensitive daughter is joining us in the spring, so we need them in place by then.

The goats keep escaping and getting into the neighbor’s pasture of cattle.  Not a good way to build relations.  We’ve put temporary fencing up to block the barbed wire that they army crawl under (seriously amusing to watch a 110 pound goat army crawl).  The adults haven’t gotten out again but the kids have.  We’re literally piling things in front of any suspected holes to block them. So far they’re winning.

So far…

To say things haven’t gone as planned is an understatement.  We were told it would cost $500 – 1000 to hook up water and electric.  It is $1000 for electric and $3000 for water.  However, the way our entrance is won’t allow for a long trailer with the electrical pole or a drill for a well. We hit the camper tongue and back end pulling in with a lifted truck. We have to put in a driveway and redo the gate we just did.  I left all my kidding/lambing supplies in Maine, because I didn’t breed anyone this year due to the move.  I just bought a ewe who is probably bred.  That’s not a big deal but we do have a lot of hawks, so I need to build a safe place for the lamb. There is more, but that’s the gist of the way things are going.

We don’t regret moving, though.  It’s not all bad.  There is a peace when I walk outside that I haven’t felt in a while.  The livestock love the space, though the goats have figured out how to get into the neighbor’s property. We need to fix that,  but we had unexpected problems that literally killed our small building fund plus our emergency fund.  I look forward to setting things up, bringing back the turkeys and chickens, and breeding next fall.   It will take at least a year longer than expected.

 

Update

We arrived in Texas at the end of October.   We built temporary shelters for the sheep and goats, plus added a temporary shed to cover hay and other things we needed to store like grain bins and outdoor tools.   It has held up fairly well to the wind.   Rebuilding will be slow, getting utilities hooked up is a lot more expensive than expected, and I’ve already gotten a list started for the trailer on the next trip down to Texas.  Those still in Maine are doing well.

We’ll be building a chicken coop soon along with a run. A new sheep was exposed to a ram prior to purchase, so we may have our first birth starting in February.   The previous owner didn’t keep track, so it will be interesting. She was exposed October to December. We need to build a lambing jug with a protective overhang. There are a lot of hawks and owls around.  We’ve already had coyotoes up to the fence.  All the animals roam during the day but are locked up at night. Amy is glad to have company again.

The weather has sometimes rivaled Maine.  Snow is expected on Saturday with a low of 19. We’re not happy, but that’s the way life goes.  We’re hoping the tanks on the camper don’t freeze.  I’m wishing I brought my heated buckets, but without electricity they wouldn’t work anyhow.  That’s pretty much it for now.