The Living Without Series

This is a series of posts that I wrote back in 2006 on living with less stuff. Check them out: liv011Living #2liv031liv04

Coal Creek Farm on Facebook

The Chicken Doctor


The Architect


Break it down…..

Yo, sup.  

Er, ahem, sorry…too many teenagers around me.
Okay, so here’s whassup around the farm.
1. We named the place Coal Creek Farm, cuz there’s a creek behind us named Coal Creek.  I know…so original.  But it was fitting and there ya go.
2. Ellen and all her classmates had a big gathering here last week and I think I may still be recovering.  It was loads of fun and the next day Ellen woke up with her face swollen from poison ivy.  She’s on meds now and looks normal except for all the nasty bloody scratches on her arms and legs.  I know of at least one other child that had the same fate.  We really need to learn how to identify that stuff.
3. The pigs aka The Choir aka Tulip and Daisy are stinkin‘ fun…they do stink a wee-wee-wee bit, yeah.  But they reside behind the barn and we can’t see or smell them from the house.  Good planning that was.
4. The chickens are eager to get outside.  The run still is not finished, maybe tomorrow.  Preacher played with one of the chickens a bit too much and well, the congregation has lost a member.  It was a sad day and the Preacher has gone before a committee to be reprimanded.  It was decided we will suspend his pulpit duties for awhile but he can continue visitations with the neighbors and the choir.
5. Have I ever told you our house was originally built for an African American Preacher?  Yup.  His congregation built it for him on 100 acres.  All the families share cropped out here for several generations.   The congregation decided it was safer to have the preacher live outside of town for fear he may be harmed living in town during the uprisings between Missouri and Kansas.  So in honor of the preacher, we have our dog named Preacher and now we have the congregation which looks much like 16, uh I mean, 15 (dumb Preacher) chickens, the choir of two lovely oinking pink ladies and let’s not forget our nursery, newly stocked with 5 baby kitties and a committee of caretakers that mew and fret over them.
6. I’m reading a book about Doris Duke.  It’s fascinating and a bit disgusting.  I’ll post more on that later, maybe.  If you don’t know who Doris was, and don’t worry I thought she was a movie star, then let me tell you.  Doris Duke, not to be confused with Doris Day, was the heiress to her father’s (James Buchanan Duke better known as Buck Duke) tobacco fortune.  She was known as the richest little girl in the world at one point.  Trinity University in Durham changed their name in honor of a $40 million donation in the lat 1920’s by Buck Duke.  That would be Duke University, in case you didn’t get that bit of info.  It’s a great read and I wish my kids would leave me alone long enough so I could finish it.
7. My garden is doing well.  I just planted corn yesterday.  I’m giving myself until June 15th to get more corn and beans planted.  So far I’ve planted: corn, potatoes (two varieties), all sorts of lettuce, cucumbers, peas sugar and sweet, radishes, beets, carrots, summer squash (or squarsh as Mom calls it) and tomatoes….loads of tomatoes.  Oh, and I have a little volunteer pumpkin patch going back by the cow fence.  God willin‘ and the creek don’t rise I think we’ll have a nice harvest.
8. We were blessed with fruit trees and berry bushes on the property.  With the help of Mom and some friends I think we’ve identified most of them.  We have 1 cherry, 3 peach, maybe 5 pear and 5 apple and 2 remain to be determined, but Mom and a friend have both said they might be some sort of nut trees?????  We’ll see.
9.  Two days until NO TV.  I have to say we’ve weaned ourselves quite a bit already with baseball and the great weather and all the work to be done outside there just isn’t time enough to sit and watch.  
10. The porch is open again.  I’m sitting out here typing right now and it’s glorious to have as a retreat from the house.  I’d share pictures with you, but I’m working on Clay’s computer and well my camera is allllll the way in the house, so you’ll just have to use your imagination.
11. We are trudging along in our attempt to become debt free.  Dave Ramsey remains our inspiration.  I’m carrying around little envelopes labeled: grocery, clothes, haircuts, etc. with our budgeted amount of cash in them to pay for everything.  You do not want to be the person in the check out line behind me when I’m searching for the correct amount of change in my envelopes, it’s annoying.  Hopefully, I’ll get quicker in the months to come.
12.  Okay, that’s it.  Enough about me, how ya’ll doin‘?

Computer, Capri’s and Countdown to No TV in June

My computer is broken.  So I have wait by the door from the time I wake up until Clay comes home ten hours later.  I now know what a dog goes through being left home alone with nothing to do but stare out the window for his master to return.  By the time Clay gets home I’m ready to pounce on him, rip his bag off his shoulder and get my fix from his computer.  I might even run a few circles around the kitchen island until he yells at me to, “Settle down!”  It’s not pretty and neither are the Capri pants I’m wearing.  

For the past three days I’ve put on decent clothes in the morning only to change into my ugly Capri pants a couple hours later.  Why?  Because I keep thinking I’m going to paint my dining room.  Har har har har!  And so it goes.
Hey!  I did put some time into stapling chicken wire to the chicken run today.  I needed something to help me get through the day.
No TV month is just around the corner.  If I was a really “with it” blogger, I’d make one of those nifty buttons and have everyone stick it up their…uh, wait, I mean stick it on their blogs.  But, I’m not.  So, if you want to join us in turning off the boob-tube..why do people call it a boob-tube?  Just typing boob-tube makes me uncomfortable and blush a bit.  Moving on, if you want to join us then please do. 
Here’s our rules.
1.  Turn off the TV
2. Don’t turn on the TV
3. Unplug the TV
4. Don’t use computer as if it is a TV
5. Don’t repair Mom’s computer, because she will huddle in the office with four children around her watching Youtube videos and try to rectify that it is educational.
6. Make appointment to repair Mom’s computer on July 1st at 0900 hours. 
7. Don’t let your children beg to go to a friends house just so they can watch TV.  
8. Computer games are considered TV. 
9. Slap yourself in the face and asks why you torture yourself like this every year to start off the summer?  Answer yourself by kicking your big flabby butt or punching your gelatinous gut.
10. Go outside.  

Burrow, Barrow, Barrel

A couple days ago Clay and I were outside working on the chicken coop.  Uh, wait.  I mean, I was watching Clay working on the chicken coop, but I did have on a pair of gloves, so I was prepared to help at a moments notice.
Then this conversation started and we spent the next three days holding our sides trying to overcome the ache from our fit of hysterics.

Me- I’m so glad Dad gave us that old wool berer.

Clay- (turning to me with wide eyes and a stupid grin)  What was that you said?  Wool berrrrrr?  Did you mean wheel barrel?
Me- No!  And it’s not a wool barrel.  It’s a will burrow.
Clay- Wheel barrel.  Say, wheeeeeel.
Me- Will, wool, woooool.
Clay- No wheeeee, wheeeel.
Me- I’m not saying that and it’s not a barrel.  It’s a barrow, like the donkey.  You know a barrow.
Clay- I think you mean burrow.  And it’s a wheel barrel.  Not wool berrer.  I’ll chalk it up to growing up in western Kansas.
Me- Wheel.  See?  I can say it just fine.  I just happen to have an accent, a western Kansas accent.
Clay- Or a speech impediment.
Me- Well, at least I know it’s NOT a wheeeeel barrel.  Dummy.
Clay- But, it’s certainly NOT a wheel burrow either.
Me- I said barrow and I think that must have come from burrow.  Right?
Clay-  You may have come from a burrow.
Me- You’re hilarious.
Clay- Wish you would have thought of that one first, huh?
Me- Maybe.
Clay- (shaking his head, laughing) Wool berrer.  Oh, April, that’s a good one.
Then to prove who was right we spent a few minutes googling wheel barrow and wheel barrel and guess who was more correct, despite the speech impediment?