Well... Looks like it's been a whole stinking year since I've been on here to do any updates. Wow, how does time do that? So a quick recap: we took the family and sheep to NJ Sheep & Wool Last year. Kids did a great job and it was a wonderful family experience. We came home, bred the ewes, made it through the winter, had lambs in the spring, sheared, hubby got a new job, we lost a few chickens in an on-going war with a mangy fox, sold some lambs & ewes, sent some to the freezer, raised a whole new set of 4-H critters, kids showed & sold them at county fair, school started, went to Disney on a family vaca, I started work again and, BAM, here we are in October 2017.
Great now that we are all caught up. This year's garden crop was a bust. The weeds just don't let up and with older kids, comes more social engagements, which means mom adds another hat to her repertoire, full time taxi driver. So the garden took a back seat this year. However, hubby has been working hard to get the fruit trees back into shape and we saw a bunch of cherries on the cherry tree this year, (birds got to em' first, but they were there). The peach trees got a good trimming last year so the crop on most of them was small or non existent, but our old back yard tree that hubby keeps talking about cutting down, had big beautiful juicy peaches all over this year. The best peaches we've had since moving in! I was a on a peach pie roll for a few weeks.
This warm fall we are having is not doing us any favors. The gnats are ferocious, the poor sheep are hot in their fall sweaters. It's breeding season, but the rams can even think about getting their moves on, it's just too hot for them. The apples dropped early & fast. I was able to get a couple bucketful's for some applesauce and some dumplings but the majority end up on the ground, boo hoo. The only ones enjoying this hot Autumn weather is probably the honey bees, but I sure hope they aren't tricked into not getting ready for winter...
Speaking of honey bees, hubby got a nice honey crop this year. We were able to extract a couple pounds mid summer and then a fall harvest gave us a bit more. Hubby has taken over the bulk of the honey bee maintenance as my back was just not cut out for the heavy lifting and my time was being taken up with the home, sheep, & children. I still assist when I can and I love to see the bees around the yard working hard, but I have to give credit for their survival and productiveness to Hubby. Not only is he an A+ hubs & dad, he's a pretty darn good beekeeper to boot.
Of course life isn't always full of peaches & honey, we've got our fair share of broken well pumps, broke down cars/farm vehicles, old furnaces that need replacing, kids needing expensive braces or new instruments (those puppies are not cheap), you know, the usual dream busting crap that comes with life's set-backs. Poor hubby has had his sights set on a big new building to house his machines and a bigger tractor to do the bigger jobs around the farm, but due these needed expenses popping up, that dream might just have to stay a dream for a bit longer. But with God's help and his reassurance that we are not alone in our trials, we will continue to trudge on and trust that with a lot of hard work, endurance, & in my case a lot of tears and tantrums, we'll get through the downs and come out on the other side with lessons learned and the memories of getting through said trials, to give us a much needed bump of confidence for the future, when the crap hits the fan once more.
Adios till next time. Blessings!