Sunday, May 3, 2015

Ebay attacks small American egg farmers!

eBay Launched un-American fees in order to clear the path for overseas markets. While many small farms are recovering in American, many still struggle to make ends meet. Our farm is one of them, we sell hatching eggs all across the country and we are very good at what we do. In the past, I have had problems with eBay policies and have managed to move forward.

So, here is the thing eBay says, that small farms can go to hell! Ok, maybe not in those words, but for all practical reasons, yes!
You are now expected to graciously give Ebay another dollar upfront to sell hatching eggs or other agricultural goods. Their new policies make no considerations for the small American farmer, they want a farmer to list eggs for ten days...because people are abusing one-day and three-day listings. Most of those listing are overseas companies. 

So screw the small American farmer who is already in many cases giving eBay a third of what they sell their goods for and then another portion for Pay Pal, so that in the end the farmer makes almost nothing. eBay is pleased with their new money making scream, I am disgusted for myself and the other small farms that in the past have used eBay, but now as of today have to rethink whether they can afford to be in business with ebay at all...please feel free to tell eBay to help preserve a way of life for small American farms!

This is the news from the mountain dear ones...please tell ebay to protect the small American farm and not to make Anti-Farm policies!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Rainy day

Good morning from the mountain, it is a rainy day today, which for all general concerns is a good thing.  Our gardens are in great need of water.  I am sorry that I have not been following up with all of you; I have been very busy just keeping up with my school work and the farm.

So far, I have managed to get the first three gardens in.  In the first outermost garden, we have peas, soloist Chinese cabbage, red romaine, yellow bell peppers, cayenne peppers, celery, corn, and zucchini.  The other garden is planted with cucumbers and a red tomatoes variety. The third garden has beets, leeks and other root vegetables planted.  Still need to finish planting it; I have more beets to go in and more carrots, and I think I am planting the Envy soybeans out there as well. Still trying to figure out how to where to put all the plants that I have started. 
Yesterday I started clearing garden number four, which I had planted with rye to give it ground cover.  I was out a little longer than I needed to be and am now the recipient of a nasty little sunburn.  However, I managed to get a good size section done and will continue working on it once the rain passes.  I am planting the red and green noodle beans in this garden.  I think I will plant the blue tomatoes out there as well, some purple carrots, a mix of radishes and some painted lady runner beans. 
Then I have to get back to work in the other garden which is closer to the house, the strawberries will be ready in a few days and I have been harvesting asparagus for a few weeks already.  I also have Jerusalem artichokes in this garden, and Egyptian onions.  Mostly I clear unwanted grass from it and leave alone, and add a few long lasting plants to go with it.  This year I think I will add a blueberry bush, seems like a safe place for it.  I will plant a few tomatoes plants out there as well.  Mostly the cherry tomatoes and the current tomatoes, this year we are planting chocolate cherry tomatoes, blueberry tomatoes, more carrots, red ones I think.
I will soon be ready to plant the corn in three sisters tradition, with our prize winning pumpkins and our CWY trail of tear beans in one section and the other side with crowed peas.  Last year this worked very well for us and we see no reason not to follow the traditions of our ancestors.  I still of course need to get the melons and watermelons, okra and other peppers, and more potatoes plants in too…          
            We have onions and garlic planted everywhere…Our fruit trees are loaded with fruit, peaches, pears and apples, autumn olives and the berry bushes are looking great.   Our grapes still of course need to still go into the ground, we need to put an arbor up for them fist.  The one I replanted two years ago is looking like it made it through the long winter so I feel we should be able to get them to grow with a little work. 
I know it sounds like a lot of work, but I promise it is worth it…raising your own food is one of the most amazing things you could ever do.  You know where your food comes from, whose hands have touched it and you know that it is free of pesticides and other harmful elements.  No GMOs foods are grown here!

Our soil is our most important feature of our farm, rich and black from years of animal byproducts, powdered kelp, mineral salts, and the help of worms and nematodes has been incredibly productive for us.  Just ten short years ago the soil here was lifeless; we brought in worms and introduced many new creatures to the soil in these past ten years.  Now you can reach down and scoop up worms by the handfuls, plants grown and thrive and even our wild plants seem happy and full of life.

Now to our wild food:  No mushrooms of any amount yet this season.  We have harvested and cooked dandelion greens, which I brought up from my home in Florida, and I hope to make fritter soon. We have harvested some of our curly dock, another yummy wild green; it also gives us a wild form of buckwheat that I use to bake bread. Yesterday I saw the goose-foot which is wild spinach forming in little groups here and there.  Our daylilies look great too, I always forget about them and our roses.

I am also happy to announce that this year all the herbs made it…I cannot tell you how happy that makes me.  My sage is flowering; my rosemary, mint, lemon balm, and oregano all look fantastic.  This year we are adding lemon grass, catnip, and a few other herbs to the fields and pastures, you can never have too many herbs.

Now to the animals we opted last season to temporarily removed cows from the farm until we can find a young healthy cow of a size that I can handle on my own.  Cows are a great deal of work and far too much for me to deal with at this time.  I have one retired milk goat left, one Jacob sheep, a few mini horses, a mini donkey, and my horse.  Aside from these we have our geese, ducks, chickens, pigeons, and the mini pigs and they all keep us very busy.  Our cow spotted mice, our snake, and two baby snapping turtles.  Add in the dogs and cats and it starts to seem like a zoo.

We have been selling hatching eggs which gives us enough money to feed them all, but scarcely more.  This has been a good week for us though, and we have been able to help other small farms start their first flocks.   This year we are selling goose eggs, duck and chicken, every now and then pigeon eggs.

I need to get back to work so I will have to go for now dear ones.  I do want to leave you with this:  You may not be able to return the world to a garden, but you can plant a seed!
Be Blessed
Shekhinah and all the kids and critters on Mahanaim Farm


Thursday, February 19, 2015

Afternoon from the Mountain

We are still snowed in which is fine, as I have plenty to keep me on the homestead.  I washed floors today and did some more school work, dishes after heating water three times.  I only have one type of water at the moment as the hot water line is frozen solid thanks to our -3 degree F temps of last night.  I am grateful to have one type of water at least and a way to heat it.  When through some more papers and draws in the house, a little before spring house cleaning.
I also sat down today to order new seeds, I am looking forward to a good growing year and if not I do have the hydroponics systems.  I cannot wait to grow greens in them.  It is all so existing, new radishes, carrots, tomatoes, and cucumbers or and Dutch blue peas.  I love growing the foods my ancestors could have grown; there is something so pure and clean about it.  It just makes me happy to play in the soil.  I have a goal of once again selling fresh produce as well, it all takes time.
Speaking of time, the show we were going to has been rescheduled till March 7th, and my soap will be done by then and so will my lip balms.  Maybe the new jewelry I ordered as well.  I order new cases for the rings and the glass that I have made, so it is all coming together.  I am so looking forward to going!
Our latest ongoing project is going off the grid.  So far, the security lights are doing an excellent job and I really like that extra 20 bucks a month, since I am not spending it on the power.  I have been shopping for solar panels and kits and what I have found is a package that for $4000 dollars will provide the main house will all the power it needs.  We can even afford it, well almost!
I did the math as to how it all breaks down.  If I could make $133 dollars for one month, I would have the money.  In comparison to our monthly electric bill which can be anywhere from $150 to $350 per month.  If I looked at the money, I am looking to spend in compared to the bill we currently have it would be $333.33 for each month for 12 months and I would own it.  It comes with a 25-year warranty, so in essence I would be getting 24 years of free power.  Since I am figuring on the amount of energy I use averaged out at around the same quantity, somewhere around $333.33 per month than in the 24 year of its promised life, I will make $96,000.  Not too shabby and I will never have to deal with the power company and their toxic sprays ever again.
Otherwise, I have no new news to offer; I just add to this note a request that you all stay safe and think about how we treat the world around us. 
Be blessed dear ones…

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Good afternoon from the mountain....and the weather is looking bad

A good very cold afternoon from the mountain, we are now within an hour or so of the first part of the storm hitting our mountain.  It is already dreadfully cold, so much so that even the flies have left and well good ridens to them and their kind.  It is not snowing or raining yet, which just means there will be more when it does come.  We are expecting 5-8 inches of snow today and a few more tomorrow.  We are ready though. 
We have food for all the livestock for the next three weeks and enough for ourselves as well.  Heaters going on the pipes, little baby birds safely stashed in heated places.  We have heaters going on the pipes so we should not lose hot water this time.  The temps this week will be as low as 4 degrees; I feel that even a polar bear might shiver at the thought.  Not to mention it is warmer in Alaska today than it is here.

That said, peas are in the ground, potatoes are ready to go into the ground.  The potatoes growing in the basement should produce a nice crop of potatoes by Mid-March and the hydroponics system is looking great.  I have new tomatoes plants growing that will be ready to move into the system in about a week, so by April we will have fresh tomatoes.  It is all very exciting.  Our turnips outside look great and we should be able to cook some more up soon.  The leeks are coming along nicely as well.
As to other life issues the boys finally learned to tie their own shoes, I am so happy.  They are doing great in school and learning all kinds of wonderful things.  We have even talked about going to the spelling bees here in our state, when I find out where they are held.  They are growing up so fast.
I of course am still writing but I have not published anything else, save the two books.  School has kept me remarkable busy and lacking in all manner of free time.  But I assure you all that it will not last forever and I shall endeavor to finish at least one book this month. 
In other farm news, our first goose egg of the season was laid today; I hope to begin selling them soon.  I have a current outstanding order to fill so I am glad to have the first egg.  Our other birds are starting to pick up on laying so we should soon be doing a bit better.  We are also in the process of taking the well of power and switching at least it over to solar.  It should help to lower the power bill and give us peace of mind. 
The one thing I cannot do without is water…No other new things to talk about so I will get back to cooking and preparing the house for this dreadful weather.

Be blessed


Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Good evening from the Mountain and a peek of America's college system

Good evening from the mountain, I have been almost totally consumed with school for the past few weeks so I am sorry for not touching base with you all sooner.  The farm is slowly coming back to life and so am I, spring is creeping up on us ever so slowly.

I have started some tomatoes, some beets and some peas.  I want to plant some more turnips, but have not had the time.  Some of the birds have started laying eggs, that makes me happy.  We have new puppies, not so happy about that...but it is what it is!

Aside from that I have been doing tons of school work as I have shared with you below.  This is one of the reason America can not compete with other countries.
Below is an assignment for a discussion board in one of my classes at Ozark.  I swear the drivel they put into the heads of our youth is ridiculous.
I want to say for the record that not all people are the same, nor should they be judged that way. A tall person could have a far different "body mass" than a short person and both could be in perfect health.  It is nothing short of stupid to tell someone they will be sick if they do not measure up.

Then I think, hmm I wonder how many people kill themselves every year trying to reach this level of perfection or kill them selves as a result of not being able to.  I am all for people being healthy, I really am, but have a realistic goal and process for gaining this.  Not all people need to be thin or even want to be.  Only communism dictates such doctrine as all are equal and if not they will be made to be.  I ask did we lose a war?  Are we so image minded that we will buy into the dogma of BMI?

Just maybe our health issues and weight issues as a country stem from the overly processed food we eat, just some food for thought.

This was the question:

Please use this discussion thread to discuss how body composition assessment can help you each, as individuals, change an attitude of ignoring personal health and weight management issues into planning behavior change and long term success.  (ie. Why is it important to know your body composition and how can you use it to make behavior changes and monitor progress?)

Honestly I am unimpressed with the results and I personally will not use body measurements in this way.  It reminds me of the people who believed you could use measurements of people’s craniums to tell if they were sane or normal, how intelligent they might be, etc.  It even went as far as to tell if someone might be a criminal and even was used to diagnose health conditions by “real” doctors.  Hitler used a similar process to decide what the perfect person was.  Anytime people start relying on such methods, they fall prey to a replacement theology of pseudo-scientific hogwash.  Not only are these methods not accurate but they are dangerous giving people a false image of self.  Many women today live under the terms of beauty as defined by men and not nature.  On this I will chose to disagree with our book.

Stuff like this just really makes my day!

But back to the books for me...

Be Blessed

Saturday, January 10, 2015

USDA Traumatizing Farmers and farms on Satuday

Good evening from the mountain, I and the farm have had a challenging day. We had made the final prep for the storm that is coming our way, when at around 3:30 on this Saturday NASS showed up on my farm looking for goats. 

The surprise is on them, all my goats are gone, between wolves( that were let go by the Fish and Wildlife division), fires,and chemical trespasses there is no point in having them.  It breaks my heart when each one dies and no one should have such a thing happen to them. 

Back to my main point I had filled in and sent their survey to them as mandated by law, you can go to jail for not filling it out. You have to understand in America no one is really free, we are forced to subject ourselves to the USDA and even though we have bought our animals we are but stake holders of them.  

My husband Mike met the USDA worker at our gate, he offer to get me, since it is my name on the paper work, but she said it was ok.  Mike gave her an earful as to why we have no goats, I would have been glad to fill her other ear.  

The average age of a farmer in America is now 58 and guess what there are very few young people like us wanting to replace them. Farming is a hard life and in America it is even harder, when I must answer to some one for every animal I have, what I do with them and such I have no freedom at all!  

I ask where were these people when the people next to me lit the fire that killed our baby goats, did they help no.  where were they when the wolfs were turned loose?  Where where they when the power company sprayed our land.  Their job has nothing to with helping farmers or protecting the food supply it is nothing less than a bureaucratic barrage of fools, claiming the goods and hard work of people with little say.  How can one survive in such a place and keep they mind in a calm place.  I obey the rules and I am punished, others with wealth buy their way around the rules.  I am sick of it.  

Who want to be a farmer anyway...

Be Blessed

A short story in the classic Katabasis form which takes place in our modern time. A epic tale so reviling of our cultural complacency that it will leave the reader shocked and dismayed, perhaps its telling will even force the reader to rethink their own life quest. The Gift is not your everyday run of the mill short story, it is so much more!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Open letter to the President in response to his pep talk to the American people over low gas prices

Good morning from the mountain.

Below is the prescient running his mouth about the low gas prices...and below that is my open letter to him.

Well thank you Sir for the pep talk about how I should not get used to the low price of gas!  Look people can barley make it now, telling them of a future doom when they can put food of value on their tables for the first time in months is nothing less than evil. 

That is not helping!  

This is not the change America was looking for!  

It also is not helping to say people now have an extra $3000. per year due to the lower gas prices, this makes me question your ability to think clearly. I personally have tightened my belt so tight Sir that all I have left is change!  Maybe if you had to live a little less large you would understand.  Many times in our home we have to make many sacrifices; we are more than human resources to be starved or fed at your desire. 

We who are the working masses of this Country are tired of being told to deal with it; Sir we have dealt with it!  As we have dealt with huge debt and laws that serve no purpose.  While you take vacation after vacation, I am barely able to keep my farm running, heat in our house and keep food of value on our table, while your wife Sir tells people to eat healthy, people like us live in food deserts, even when we can find fruit or vegetables, we can not afford to acquire them until they are marked down. 

I quite frankly wish you would just stop talking you embarrass us all with this dreadful behavior, and Sir it makes me sad to be an American in YOUR America!  

Please for the love of all that is Holy quit helping me while I can still afford to breath...

Your help is killing the America I love.