Over the past few evenings, we have been getting so frustrated with trying to trap a raccoon that has managed to eat 2 chickens and scare a third one. The chickens are on extreme lockdown right now.
But, this is just part of taking care and raising anything. It’s frustrating, breaks your brain while looking for a solution and makes you feel like a failure. Instead of focusing on the negative at hand, I decided to look for some things that are going right at the moment. So, here are a few rainbows among the storm:
Then, I spent the evening preserving some of the leftover produce from the sale on the weekend.
And this definitely made me feel better! This is a little before and now picture:
Anyone else dealing with garden or animal issues? Try to remember that while some things are bringing you down, there are still lots of successes out there! Keep blooming! 🌱💚
My kiddo is growing up fast and I would love to instill some work ethic into him. Don’t get me wrong, he will help out with whatever you ask him to, but I would love for him to understand what it’s like to keep customers happy. So, this summer he is providing a service to our neighbors/friends/family that were willing to participate! (And he actually got 10 people!)
The way that it works is that I am going to pay him, because not many people would actually pay for a service like this in our area. We asked around on Facebook and were able to round up some free buckets and that’s where we got the customers too!
Then, I helped him line them all with some newspaper and he wrote out the pickup times and put the list inside,
He has already cleaned out several and has retrieved around 15 pounds of compostable materials that would have otherwise made its way to the landfill!
And now for his process:
And an awesome coworker/friend thought that the boy’s service was such a good idea, that she donated some cleaner! This stuff smells amazing and leaves the buckets smelling great!
And on to Step 4:
When he gets home we throw most of it into the compost bin, and give anything that would be enjoyed by the chickens to them! They sure are loving this!
I’m hoping to be able to keep this going all summer and I’m very thankful to the sweet people that are willing to try composting! I also love the fact that my boy knows just as much about composting as I do! He can answer pretty much any question that a customer throws his way! Keep blooming, even in the middle of a neighborhood! 🌱💚
So far we have still been doing relatively well with this whole trying not to spend money on frivolous things journey! I was so proud of the Mr. for finding a used pair of boots that he really wanted for when we go hiking. He found them on eBay and I’m pretty sure they are never worn! And he raves over how comfortable they are!
We were also able to go to the museum in Antietam, MD and camping without extra spending. We took our own food and drinks, played the free putt putt there and avoided the gift shop where everything was so expensive!
Also, since the boy is starting his own little composting business, we told people nearby that if they were getting ready to get rid of something that the chickens would enjoy, that we would gladly take it! The chickens have been enjoying cabbage, lettuce, spinach, avocados and even some bread!
And even though new buckets would look great for the boy’s composting service, we decided to peel off labels and scrub down ones that were given to us instead! They will go out to his customers today. We did purchase easy to remove lids for them.
And we are still growing pretty much everything from seed to save money. I love weird varieties of plants, so growing from seed is about my only option. I am going to get the squashes, watermelons and gourds growing in the greenhouse this week! They can go in the ground at the end of the month!
We also got back a nice little tax credit for the solar panels! So instead of buying something new, we dropped that money on the loan that we have for them. They won’t take too long to pay off either!
And now for the things that I have bought: I purchased a nuc of honeybees, because most of my bees died this winter.
We also have to buy fencing for the garden, but that needed done because of the old fencing breaking.
Even though we are still spending money on our homestead needs, we are making huge financial strides! My braces (Invisalign) will be paid off next month. We still have no vehicle payments. We have no credit card bills (thank goodness!) and we are getting close to another $10,000 leap on our mortgage! We should have this place paid off before I’m 40!
Are you making your debt snowball roll?! We are trying!
As you all know, I love the Earth every single day! But this year I stepped it up and helped to organize a town clean up! Only 9 people showed up, but we cleaned up a lot of trash! (Probably close to 20 bags!)
My boy will be starting up his own composting service soon! He’s going to pick up neighbor’s compostables for our compost pile and educate them on how to compost. I love that he knows so much about how to keep a small carbon footprint!
I also started working on killing off the grass to make room for the flowers that will be planted here! And look at that beautiful bat box that was put up!!
While taking breaks, I enjoyed watching the chickens do their thing! They are quite entertaining!
And then, of course, I have to share a few gardening pictures!
And, I finally started some indoor flowers after my momma showed me how amazing hers were looking! I had total flower envy!
With May right around the corner, I’m looking forward to starting lots more seedlings for the garden. And, of course, we need to work on getting the soil ready in the garden! I already envision our garden in my mind, but I’m not sure if they will all turn out ok! Regardless, I’m excited about our 2018 garden!!
Between Tuesday and Wednesday, Mother Nature decides to spice up life and throw around 7 inches of snow our way! Just look at the difference between the pollinator area from Sunday to Wednesday!
The chickens are not big fans of snowy days, so they decided to stayed tucked nicely in their house! But, their egg production is still increasing!
Every year around this time, I get tagged in the meme with the girl gardening in the snow! So, this year I recreated it! 😆
My good deed for the month of March is marked off! I went down to school (the one I teach at) and shoveled off as much of the playground area as I could for the kiddos. They really appreciated it today!
Im not going to lie and say that I was super productive on the days off from school/work because I wasn’t! I did manage to start making some curtains for the camper!
And below, the Mr. upcycled some spoons into curtain rod holders for the door curtain that I quickly sewed up!
The indoor plants under the grow lights are looking pretty awesome! The only veggies that I have planted are peppers, but I have also started lots of perennials for the pollinator area!
And I will be doing a diy post on fermenting seeds to save them! I had leftover tomatoes in the freezer, so I fermented the seeds. That way I can plant the loads of tomatoes that I need to without spending so much money on plants!
Did it snow where you are? And what do you have growing right now? Keep blooming friends!
We made 3. major achievements this month! 1. We paid off the truck!
So, we are officially vehicle payment free! Of course last month, instead of putting more money towards the house or the solar panels, I needed new tires for my car. They were leaking air constantly and not safe, so that’s definitely a must!
2. On the awesome list is that made another $10K leap on the house! You know, when you look at how much you owe and it is no longer in the $80K’s (for example) and now in the $70k’s!! That’s exciting! That will definitely feel good to get paid off eventually!
3. The Mr. has been doing a great job of packing his lunch! For pretty much ever, he has been a “pick up a snack while working” kind of guy. But after I showed him a quick write up of how much that really costs per year, he changed that habit!
For Valentine’s Day I actually had parent-teacher conference day until almost 6pm. So, it was easy to not go out to eat! But, we enjoyed out weekend and my parents even took our boy for a night. It was very quiet around here without him! 😳
My Mr. made me a beautiful pollinator garden for the special occasion out of upcycled wood. We just need to get the bamboo to fill it, but we have a free source for that! It is quite an invasive plant!
We were able to make a few bucks this week too! The dead hive provided us with some honey to sell. We will use that to help buy us another colony! Bees are not easy to keep! (Or cheap!)
And soon I will have a surplus of eggs to rehome!
Also, the Mr. blacksmithed some beautiful mantel brackets for a beam of barn wood for a customer! They turned out beautiful!
And now, in their new home!! They loved them just as much as we did!
Our electric bill came, and I was expecting a nice bill because February was pretty cold, but to our surprise it was $0!!
And to save a lot of money, I start my garden from seeds. Getting plants from the nursery is pricy, and you can only get certain varieties, so I save my seeds and use the heirloom varieties yearly! And this year, I got involved in a seed swap to get different varieties! (I did have to pay shipping)
It was not a perfect month because we still needed to buy items for the camper, and we started picking up some candy for the boy’s Easter basket. Oh, and we got Chinese out one time, but used the money from our crafting and not the bank. So, we haven’t been perfect, but it’s nice to be able to create a growing savings account and work on our debt snowball!