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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


The 400 Pound Dogs in My Back Yard


If you live in the country surrounded by hundreds of acres of corn, a cow pasture, the wetlands and Virgina’s house do you call the large field of grass behind the house a yard?  I always feel strange saying front yard or back yard because that makes it sound like we have a privacy fence and a swing set.  We have some barbed wire and a fort built on the foundation of an old smokehouse.  Just wondering.  Please discuss this topic in great detail.  Thank you and goodnight.

Oh, wait…I almost forgot…

The pigs are out.


The first time our pigs busted out of their pen was this summer and I grabbed my camera to have fun taking photos of them while we walked around with them as Clay repaired the pen. 


The second time they busted out was when we were trying to load them onto the back of the truck to be hauled to the….butcher.  I have no pictures of this event because it was six freaking o’clock in the morning, pouring rain and nobody was happy, especially me.  It was two months ago, did I mention it was raining?  Did I say we were covered in mud and pig crap?   Did I tell you Clay’s head nearly exploded when Seth and I didn’t move quick enough to save the chute  from tilting to the ground, allowing the pig we had been trying to load for a good 45 minutes to squirt out the side to her freedom?  Yeah, it was a fun morning.  For a few minutes Clay and I stood in our ‘back yard’ a good fifty feet from each other, not saying a word because we were both thinking we’d just set the pigs free, but were afraid to admit it to the other person.


We finally were able to load two of the pigs because they willingly walked up the ramp and onto the truck bed.  We have zero skills in loading pigs.

Since that wonderful morning our remaining two pigs have grown so large and strong that they make match sticks out of the boards and crumple the tin paneling like aluminum foil.  One of the pigs tossed Clay up in the air when he was nailing a board,  just hooked  her nose under his bent knee and flung him like a rag doll.


We are Ma and Pa Kettle when it comes to farming.  If we weren’t on this DAD-GUM Mother LOVIN’ debt reduction we’d purchase new building materials to add on to the barn and make a bigger pen for the pigs and chickens.  We built our pig pen and chicken coop out of old materials that were found on our property.  It’s not pretty.  Up until the pigs were huge it worked just fine, but now, not so much. 


The last two pigs will be hauled away next week.  Right now we have railway ties and metal and boards and concrete blocks holding their pen together.  It’s a ridiculous maze of crap.  Clay jokes about losing his architecture license if anyone sees his handy work.  It’s our dirty little secret.  The man that designs beautiful commercial buildings has a pile of junk behind his barn that he built for his pigs.  Is this a contradiction or what?  It’s life on Coal Creek Farm.


The pigs are out, just another day.

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