Your Mama

UPDATE: NANCY ADCOCK WINS THE ALMANAC. WOOHOO!

“Your Mama wears combat boots to church.”

Rebekah, as a 6th grader

May Farm Report from Rebekah’s Farm
Ah, well…..the thing is…..the farm is coming along…..not so much.

The garden. The visitors. The chicks. The horse. The giveaway. And. The combat boots.
Here we go. In reverse order.

The combat boots.

“Your Mama wears combat boots to church.”

See back when I was a child, we KNEW how to insult one another. That quote is one of the things we used a lot in the little town I grew up in.

One of my presents for my 50th birthday was this pair of green combat boots.

One of my other gifts was the freedom to wear them whenever and where-ever I want to. That freedom was a gift I gave myself; it comes with turning 50. So I wore them to church under a black long skirt. I told my daughter that if someone said to her, “Your Mama wears combat boots to church” that they’d be exactly right. She told me that these days the kids just say, “Your Mama.” What?! That’s it? Just “Your Mama”? That’s supposed to be an insult? Your mama WHAT? I don’t get it. I just don’t get this generation. Are they really so lazy they can’t think of something specific to say about each other’s Mama’s. (haha. I get to say these kinds of things now that I’m 50: “I just don’t get this generation.”)

Anyway. I wore them. They looked super cute. And they almost match my new truck.

The giveaway.

Have you discovered the Greenhorns website? http://www.thegreenhorns.net/ I bet you have already. Very cool and informative. Well, I ordered two of those Almanacs and am giving away one. http://www.thegreenhorns.net/category/media/almanac/

One for me, one for you. Make a comment, facebook me, or send me an email to enter (email address is rebekah at maryjanesfarm dot com). I’ll draw a name and send it to the winner to enjoy.

Also take some time to explore the wonderfulness of http://newfarmersalmanac.org/. You’ll be touched with the Audio Almanac. Beautiful!

The horse.

My Great White Horse is headed to Boot Camp.

I know I didn’t mention it before but My Sweetheart, the horse love of my life, bucked me off. Wham and I’m on the ground. It hurt my feelings more than it hurt my bum. And, believe me, my bum was bruised, so you can imagine my feelings. But it was a wake-up call for sure. I can no longer ignore the fact that he needs some tuning up. He’s not exactly the bomb-proof, family horse he was represented to be when I bought him. I’m not complaining though, because I do indeed LOVE him madly and believe he was supposed to come to me and be mine forever. I’m dreading him going because I love him so much. I’ll miss him. In fact, I miss him already and he hasn’t even left. But I bought him to RIDE him, not just to LOVE him and LOOK at him and GIVE him treats. It. Must. Be. Done. So he’ll be going this week. I hope it will be only for a month or so. How long he’s there really depends on how well he does. The sooner he ‘gets with the program,’ the sooner he’ll come back home to me. I believe that he wants to be good; he just forgot how to be.

The chicks.

I never in a million years thought we’d love these little chicks the way we do. We ordered 17 chicks from Murray McMurray in Iowa. I ordered the mystery ornamental hen collection. We received them in the mail on April 22. They are 4 weeks old now. They grow so fast you can almost see them growing. They are growing LIKE WEEDS!

Several weeks ago we lost one. I don’t know what happened. She was droopy and listless. I held her and tried to get her to drink some electrolytes; but she died while I held her. It was awful. We had a funeral for her and buried her under the old oak tree.

That night I served chicken for dinner. It just kinda struck us then. My daughter (12 years old) said, “No way.” I said, “Yeah, no way.” My husband said, “Way.” So he ate the chicken dish and my daughter and I ate rice and salad. Looks like chicken is off the menu at our house. I’ve always had vegetarian tendencies because I love animals so much. Think I’ll explore beans, pasta and tofu a bit more. And I have the best recipe EVER for cheese enchiladas. I’ll post it over at www.rebekahteal.com. So fantastic and easy. Here they are before I popped them in the oven. So good!

I love having these chickies in the house. I can go and check on them constantly. There is one we think is a Sicilian Buttercup.

Sweetest Chick Ever

As soon as you pick this baby chick up, she falls asleep in your hands. She’s precious, precious, precious. When I first thought she might be a Sicilian Buttercup, I looked them up. Most resources describe them as unfriendly and skittish so I didn’t think that could be our little chick. I’m pretty sure it is, so there ya go. She’s the friendliest bird in the bunch and not skittish at all. Just a little doll. We call her Tiger.

The other bird that stands out from the bunch big time is our little Black Cochin.

Cutest chicken EVER hatched!

She is easy to identify because of her legs and feet. They are covered in feathers. She, too, is a little angel. Friendly and curious and smart and calm. We haven’t named her yet.

These two on the roost are White Faced Black Spanish chickens. We think!

We have a third White Faced Black Spanish that we believe is a rooster. He is bold and brave. And he is larger than the others. There is a certain look in his eye that I can’t define. He gets up on the roost and flies down on everybody, causing a stir. He’s pecky and pushy. We will be very surprised if that bird turns out to be a hen. Of course, keep in mind….we know NOTHING about chickens. NOTHING.

But I look forward to having my very own

.

Currently I get mine from a neighbor.

The building of the chicken house is coming along slowly. I think this is why they tell you to have a house before you order the chickies. It is going to take longer (and cost more) than you could ever imagine.

But, as I mentioned, I don’t mind them in my house. Well, except for the smell. There is no way to cover up that smell. I’ve felt like they need more space, so I keep putting on additions for them. I take a cardboard box and cut a round hole in the side. I then hook them up together. For one, I used a tube that the birds can walk through, a tunnel connector. The other one I was able to simply tape together. The birds seem to enjoy the different apartments. Cute things.

The garden.

The list of reasons why my garden progress is stalling:

1. It’s been raining for weeks. 2. I don’t have a tractor or tiller that works. 3. I’m rather overwhelmed and unsure where to start. 4. Did I mention the rain?

1.This weather! The ground hasn’t dried out in weeks. You walk across the meadow and hear squishy noises. Look down and you can see the water with each step. Soon you feel it in your shoes; your shoes and socks are soaked. That’s the way it has been around here. More rain is predicted for this week. This is encouraging the weeds to take over the property. Like the phrase I used a minute ago when I was talking about my chickies “growing like a weed.” I get it now. Weeds grow faster than anything else. When there is no chance to mow or weed-eat in between the rain storms, well, the weeds get out of control fast.

The good side of that is that many of the weeds are wildflowers with beautiful flowers.

I am currently farming weeds. A “weed farmer” I am.

2.The hunt for a reasonably priced tractor hasn’t gone well. I have found a couple of older CUTE tractors, but they won’t get the job done. And, the price of the newer, larger tractors is just too much right now. The tiller from our suburban garden has gone ca-pluey, so we don’t even have that right now. And, shall I add to the mix that there are still fallen pine trees on what I hope will be my kitchen garden spot. Zero progress on a garden.

3.Wait. No, that’s not true. I was in the Feed and Seed store buying some chicken starter and I saw this collection of seeds by the register. I couldn’t resist.

These seeds are non-GMO, all natural, non-hybrid, heirloom. It was a great price, but has made me feel overwhelmed.

Look at this list and you’ll see why.

The kit includes:

Blue Hubbard Winter Squash

Lincoln Pea Jubilee Watermelon

Scarlet Emperor Bean

Yellow Indian Woman Bean

Appaloosa Bean

Dapple Grey Bean

Baby Borlotti Bean

Butter Scotch Bean

Pigeon Peas

Eye of the Goat Bean

Black Valentine Bean

Black and White Calypso Bean

Mayflower Bean

Red and White Calypso Bean

Marrone Bell Pea

Chamomile Herb

Dill Boutiquet Herb

Thyme Broad Leaf Herb

Italian Basil Valention Herb

Lemon Balm Herb

Forest Green Parsley Herb

Oregano Herb

Yellow Globe Turnip

All American Parsnip

Yolo Wonder Pepper

White Bunching Onion

Waltham Butternut Winter Squash

Purple Plum Radish

Mary Washington Asparagus

White Sweet Spanish Onion

Purple Top White Globe Turnip

Tender green Mustard Green

Sugar Baby Watermelon

Scarlet Nantes Carrot

White Wonder Cucumber

Delicious Cantaloupe

Pumpkin Ct Field

Edisto Cantaloupe

White Icicle

Cuban Sweet Fryer Pepper

Red Romaine Lettuce

Chioggia Beet

Golden Ace Cabbage

Waltham Broccoli

Black Seeded Simpson Lettuce

Jack-O-Lantern

Imperator Carrot

Bloomsdale Long Spinach

Detroit Dark Red Beet

Roma Tomato

Cherokee Purple Tomato

Black Krim Tomato

Brandy Wine Yellow Tomato

Marglobe Supreme Tomato

Delicious Tomato

Brandy Wine Red Tomato

Beefsteak Tomato

Bradley Tomato

Mortgage Lifter Tomato

Rutgers Tomato

Arkansas Traveler Tomato

Self Blanche Cauliflower

Quattro Stagioni Lettuce

Copenhagen Market Cabbage

Georgia Collard Green

Whew!! I mean—check that out!! How’s that for some seeds! Can you believe that collection? All those seeds and not one ounce of planting instructions. Ouch. I’ve got my work cut out for me FOR SURE. I guess I’ll start by planting what I know how to plant and go from there. I’ll start some tomato plants inside in a cardboard egg carton. I think the Mortgage Lifter Tomato sounds like a real winner! We can all use some of that.

Am I too late? Maybe that’s why the seed collection was such a great deal. Hmmm.

Hey-Speaking of cute things with feathers…

The visitors.

Our visitors lately have had feathers.

Three little ducks. See them? With their heads in the water? My ducks are all in a row. (If only.)

This is our pasture. Puddles have formed in the low spots from all the rain we’re getting.

A Great Heron also visited our pasture puddles.

A white turkey.

(turkey season just ended. she’s safe!)

An Indigo Bunting.

So that’s the update. Hope to make some ACTUAL progress by my next post! ha!

SO HEY! What’s happening with you?! Don’t forget to leave a comment or contact me to enter the drawing!

Until next time, Friends, savor the flavor of life!

Lots of love, The City Farmgirl, Rebekah

Leave a comment 34 Comments

  1. Cindy says:

    I have always wanted a Farmer’s Almanac! Little by little, everything will come together. It’s the journey that matters! Bless your happy weeds…Cindy

  2. Rebecca says:

    Whew! Sounds like you’ve got your work cut out for you! I love all that you have going on, though. Chicks and wildflowers AND boots and horses….. It all sounds so wonderful. The Mortgage Lifter tomato seeds are the only ones of your collection that I recognize. They’re actually very, very good tomatoes.

  3. Meredith says:

    I love your blog with all the information and your experiences which are so valuable. It gives me courage to continue with my farm project. I’m breaking ground on my farm house next month. EEEE! :)

  4. april says:

    It will come together soon just enjoy the process! I think i live close to where you live and understand about the rain! Hang on it should stop soon and we only should get a shower here and there till this fall. Love to read your blog and love the boots! never saw green ones before i say wear them everywhere

  5. Barbara Klein says:

    Why would your shoes and socks get wet when you have a perfectly good, new pair of combat boots!

  6. Sharon Crosswhite says:

    Almanac sounds wonderful;please pick me!
    Hope your seeds sprout and garden grows as well as your weeds! The teenage stage of chickies can be so frustrating, especially with them in he house. May it pass quickly. Oh, and you are spot-on with the comment about the chicken house taking longer and costing more than ev imagined!
    Have a beautiful week.

  7. Maria says:

    Just read your post, lovely. Suggestion if you want to make your enchiladas heathy and not use so much cheese and if you like cauliflower, you steam them mash them and then add your cheese. Just a suggestion. Have a wonderful Day!
    Maria

  8. Jan says:

    I think that maybe you should go small on the garden this year! You have enough on your plate, and this year will give you some time to talk to the neighbors about how and when they do their plantings. For example, it takes awhile to start tomatoes and get them ready to set out. We don’t actually plant the garden here in eastern WA until about the 1st of June. We still might have a frost coming tomorrow night!!
    I once had an Arabian horse named Sheik. He was a beautiful palomino and I was a novice rider. My experienced horse mentor could jump on him and make him do wondrous acrobatics. I could not…I would suggest that you do some equestrian classes while your beauty is being ‘trained’. Confidence is something that your horse will recognize..Good luck!

  9. Barb Delaney says:

    Your life is my dream.

  10. Amy says:

    I so enjoy reading of your beginnings into rural living. We have purchased my husband’s family farm and wish desperately to move there but finances are holding us here in town. Keep plugging away, your doing great!

  11. Joan says:

    As I was always told – when one is busy, one stays out of trouble – YOU ARE ONE BUSY ONE!! What fun to read about it. So sorry sweetheart is having issues, hopefully the teacher will give him an attitude adjustment and he will be so happy to come home and be all that you know he can be. Love the boots, I had a pair back in the day, but mine were boring black, love the green . Chick chick chick another great love of my life, sorry for the loss but the others seem to be great fun. I once did the ‘chick before the house’ and ended up building a quick house, it is a house that I moved them outside before the real house was ready and also so that they could come inside at night, just a wooden crate,chicken wire and a run, oh the memories you bring back for me, thanks! My garden is still sitting in the kitchen, cold,snowy late into planting time and now we are getting rain, not really complaining because we have drought for years, so will put things out when I can. JEEPERS IF ONLY I HAD HAD AN ALMANAC – maybe I would have known that gardening would be delayed. Anyway whom ever gets the Almanac – congratulations and what a sweet idea of sharing with others. God Bless

  12. Doris says:

    Hey Rebekah,
    I always love your blog. Your pictures are beautiful. I think your middle picture of your "weeds" is Creasy Salad. We love it cooked and served with vinegar and a Big slice of cornbread. Check it for sure before you try it:)

  13. Rebecca says:

    I would love to win the almanac.

    About the garden situation, I finally was able to get my garden in last week but we have had nothing but rain, rain, rain also here I Mid-Missouri.

    Have you ever considered raised beds. That is what I did this year and you don’t need a tiller. It is a lot easier than tilling up a garden every year. I have about six raised beds and you can add to them every year. Make walking paths in between. I really like it better than a traditional garden which I have had for years. Much easier for this "over 50" girl.

  14. Dorothy S says:

    You are one busy lady. We haven’t planted a garden yet because of the weather. We have planted the brandy wine tomato before and it is very good. Like the idea of the cauliflower in the enchilada recipe you posted. It all takes time and nothing happens fast enough when you are on a ranch or farm. Keep plugging away – that is what I do.

  15. Kim says:

    I LOVE all the adventures you are having! I live vicariously through you since buying a farm is not an option for us. Thanks for sharing!

  16. Molly Welsh says:

    Oh dear, I hope you do not become disappointed in the results of you grdening experience – that is a VERY BIG bite for the beginning.
    It is wonderful to grow one’s own food. We have gardens, small orchard, & berries on our lot in a very rural eastern WA townlet. I also have chickens for eggs, but I must tell you that we do eat our chickens when they have come to the end of their producing life. This does not mean we respect them any less or care for them in a haphazard manner. And, yes, they do have names & personalities all their own.
    But, everyone has their own ideas about this. I am glad you are having your horse trained. It is a good thing to be able to have a "horsey" friend to ride and enjoy.

  17. Mary Rauch says:

    I hope you change your mind again about eating chicken. It is SUCH a gift to be able to raise your own NO CHEMICAL fed chickens for your family table. Enjoy the clean meat and maybe the FRESHEST eggs in the world when the time comes, and be happy to have it.
    The almanac offer sounds wonderful. Hope it is Moi!

  18. Kelly says:

    So happy I stumbled upon your blog! I am a newly minted citygirl farmer and loving every minute of it. We are fortunate not to have the rain you have had so I was able to build 5 raised beds and a compost bin over the last 2 weekends and get my lovlies in the ground. I can’t believe I still have some room, so off to the store for more seeds! I would love to have an almanac if that were to happen. Best of luck to you and hope you dry out soon! Kelly

  19. Meredith Wiliams says:

    I can whole heartedly second Jans suggestion of getting more training yourself while your boy is at boot camp. A less schooled horse with a novice rider who figures out he has a novice rider may go to school and come home smart, but he will remember your skills or lack thereof! It’s not so good if he is aware he knows more than you, so surprise him with more skills of your own! Good luck!

  20. Elizabeth colvin says:

    I love reading your blog and am in LOOOVE – did I say In LOOOVE with those combat boots….how cute…just LOOOOVE the color!

  21. Rebekah, love the boots, and I hope your lovely horse learns some manners, also I love the turkey. my friend back home in La. had one come up on her property and he actually ended up living there and being a great protector over her hens. She named him "Gordy". I hope you get all your seeds planted if not this year put them in the fridge and they will be good for next year. Happy farming, and love seeing all of the updates on your new farm. Be Blessed. neta

  22. Diane Van Horn says:

    Rebekah,
    The simple life is not so simple! You are doing an amazing job! Keep it up. Your Mama!
    I would love an almanac and I love the Greenhorns!
    I think you may be a little too late with some of your seeds, but some of the shorter season crops would be fine to plant now. Maybe you will just have to shop at farmer’s markets this year and garden next year. I am sure your seeds will still be good. Just store them in a cool, dark place.
    I love your boots!

  23. Rene Foust says:

    I wish you much success and I am sure it will all work out eventually. I love the combat boots and the permission that you have given yourself to wear them. The chickens are cute as can be and I agree with you and your daughter; chicken would be off my menu (I am not a vegetarian but don’t eat much meat for the same reason I love animals too much). I am sure you will be riding your beautiful white horse in the very near future and you will feel so free and happy when you do. The garden problem is one that I have going on as well; maybe next year. The dream that we have is a big wonderful dream and the good thing is that we have actually taken the step to live it, the sobering part is that it is going to take work, money, patience and time…but we will get there. The journey is the destination anyway. Much success to you and I love the chance to win a copy of the almanc. Thanks

  24. carol branum says:

    hi,here in the real world,my farmgirl dreams are on hold this year,if you remember the Allen Jacksons tune.But I will ask Spirit to help you with all the work,maybe you should hire a hi school girl to help you. carol

  25. Peggy says:

    The list of seeds you bought are really interesting. It would be fun researching some of them.
    I love the way your new farm life is coming together.
    Where did you get the beautiful combat boots in that color?

  26. jaylyn morehouse says:

    Beautiful pictures! Count me in for the giveaway please!!!

  27. bobbie calgaro says:

    I need a farmer’s almanac. i have planted a porch container garden with gro-boxes (brand name) and they are great. Maybe you could start there and work up to the big one. Rain here in Clemmons, NC has been over-abundant too. Unfortuneately we know how easily we slip into drought to complain. i have a big troy built tiller that we don’t use. Interested? lol have a great day. nothing was ever done in a day.

  28. Leslie says:

    Beka- love your boots and stories. We have a little dog -remi– who like your beloved horse — forgets the rules and though he tries to be good, he just forgets the rules. Fortunately he gets by on his sweet looks and personality. Would you believe my family may actually need a farmer’s almanac? A very slight distance from our current house but quite a change is in store for us– holding my breath til may 31… But Steve is very excited.

  29. jonna says:

    hi Rebecah, I’m a first time chick mom too (thanks to MJF & a friend who thought it would be a win win to give me 11 orphaned 2 day old babys); now they are 14 days old & in the house as are yours; not cuz they dont have a coop; cuz mama is afraid something will get them ; ) anyway, rosemary essential oil is helping w/ the smell & it is good for the chicks! might give it a try…

  30. carol says:

    I so look forward to reading your updates, Rebekah. I am living through your life—doin’ all those things I’ve dreamed about. I hit my big 60 this year and guess I’ll just have to be satisfied with your virtual farm-life. (I have made a request to the FATHER, that my mansion in the sky is a rambling old house on some land where I can fulfill my dreams. So for now, I am contentedly living in the old part of Omaha with my hubby of 40 years and our dog, Matty–caring for our plot of land, home, and reaching out to those HE brings across my path and serving HIM the best I can. See you in the skies!

  31. Nancy Adcock says:

    Enjoy your blog so much…and understand…three years into a country home from the big city for us…don’t know if we will make it! It is challenging…to say the least!

  32. Mary Beth Schwarz says:

    Love those blue boots and ___where can I get some___ (do they have to be painted with shoe paint?)?!!! The Green horns sound neat and I love almanacs! Mr. Snow will be a quick leaner since he is a smart guy, and he will come back to you Ready To Ride! It is quite freeing to be a woman of a certain age able to do what you want without wondering what others will think. When you become 60+ you are nearly invisible, but I guess I have always had an independent streak a mile wide. Good luck on the garden drying out enough for planting! Mary Beth

  33. Carol in NC says:

    Just reading your seed list made me weak in the knees. I say save the bulk of it for next year, buy a few tomato plants and enjoy the farmer’s market. Squash is easy to grow from seed, and you’ll want a cucumber plant or two, and some bell peppers. Some herbs of course. The greens you can plant later for fall. See, it’s already getting carried away!

    Google chicken moat. I’ve never done it, but it looks like three birds with one stone. It’s a protected chicken run, deer deterrent (because of the double fence) and pest control at the same time. Love the almanac. Count me in!
    Here’s to boot camp!

  34. Marcie says:

    love our mini NE TN farm with chickens and garden and fresh air and yes, we have had lots of rain too. When I have to slog about outside I wear my LL Bean mocs (they are waterproof) … feet and socks stay dry. Hubby wears his Bean boots. Check out the neat stuff they have, you’re bound to find some waterproof things.

    Hope the horse comes home from boot camp with a respectful attitude.

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