Mahaniam Farm 

Creating a future from the past...

 

Sad News for our farm, our farm had self certified back in 2009, in June of 2013, we lost that certification.  Our local power company NEAC allow its contractors to spray a toxic mix of Rodeo (roundup by another name), Escort and Polaris on our nice organic soil. 

For weeks we tried to get them to understand what happened, they would not hear us.  

The contractors for NEAC came to our farm on June 12, 2013, below is the readers digest version of events. 

To all my friends, family and well-wishers, the events of last night have all been recorded, and as soon I get a free moment, they will be made available.

I can tell you much of what went on was just pure idiocy on their behalf.  They are utterly unaware of the damage they have caused, and because they cannot see it with their eyes, they balk at my words.  Soil tests will show their chemicals in my soil.  I am happy to send soil off.

They seemed to have felt it was not that big of a deal.  I think it is; I cannot sell my plants or wild forage as organic, and not sure I would like to sell them as non-organic / contaminated crops. 

What they said really amounts too, “your plants do not look dead enough.” Really, it is not about the dead plants as much as the now non-organic level I have acquired.  They think if you cannot see it; it is not real; I could write volumes where that went wrong.  So after trying to get me to agree to accepting $5000.00, plus $1000.00 for a fence, and failing, they continued to push.  They explained how many people were now out of work because of me.  I corrected them; it was due to their error, not mine.  They told me how awful it would be if we all had to go to court that they would pull my taxes, and I would have to pull paper work.  I also explained I was OK with that; I am a registered farm; I have my certification in writing, and that my husband keeps exceptionally detailed records as all organic farms are required to do. 

He was aware that our farm was organic; he understood that it would take us years to get recertified, but insisted it would all be ok.  He told us how it could drag out for a year; I have years now, so no problem.  He said, listen I can have this money to you by Friday, in cash.  I explained it does not matter about the money; it is so much more than that.  I told them about what the farm meant to us and others, and how we had to make sure that not only did they never return, but that no other organic farm would endure our fate.  He told me how they would make sure.  I paused and said, you said that about my trees.  He said this time was different.  I cannot tell you the number of times people in my life had used those exact words, perhaps it is a flaw in all people to tell you what they think you want to hear.  I am unsure, but I am sure that I said no.  I will lose $5000.00 per year on our small farm organic, for no less than three years, but closer to five or seven.

 I have the money saved to pay the entire certification for the plants; that would have allowed us to make as much money as we wanted.  Now, my dream of doing that is dead, but I will push forward to protect other farms, from this sort of RAPE.  I will teach others to stand up to these companies and get back what belongs to them.  I will not give up, and my friends and loved ones, I will not give in.  My cause is just.

Shekhinah

 

 

 

Ok so we have the trailer moved up (photos are in  my photos under moving the trailer) and butted up to the main house now.  The fun of cleaning gutting it and leveling it begins. 

We are almost ready to put the new roof on the main house and it looks like it is going to be a ton of work.  We are going to have to fix at least three trusses and use around or at 27 sheets of ¾ inch plywood.  Than I have to figure out how many squares of shingles I will need and call around and find enough to do the job.  Most likely I will use several colors and types of shingles as it will be more than 80 percent cheaper to do that; I use broken bundles, odd colors, discontinued lots…Does not matter we will make it work.  I love laying the shingles, there is something about the simplicity of the act that is really soothing and enjoyable for me and it is a form of art to make it look right when you are not working with perfect level lines.

 

Ok so with this started, gardens planted and being switched over for the winter crops, canning all the fruit that is now ripe and there is a lot this year, have brought in over 500 pears so far, about 20 pounds of black berries and 5 lbs of strawberries, 5 lbs of wild plums and about 30 pounds of apples, it is endless and we are still canning milk for the dry months in the winter.  So we are nowhere near done there either.

 

We are trying to prepare for the orchard which will arrive this fall.   That requires having dirt trucked in, back hoe to dig the holes and a whole lot of friends to help us get it all done.

 

 

 So far we are getting:

 2 pomegranate trees one Utah golden and one wonderful variety.

4 blue berry bushes, (trailer moving guy ran over the others), 2 Briteblue and two Austin

2 Asian pears ( we have one cooking pear tree now that is at least 20 years old.)

4 paw paw trees two Collins select and two wild seeded ones from Tennessee.

 Three banana trees, two golden African, one pink banana plant.  

6 apple trees, 2 of the three in one, 2 of the Arkansas black and one Dorsett Golden  and one anna apple tree, I may get more latter, plus we still have two apple trees of unknown type still growing here.

2 fig trees, one desert king and one Italian delight.

2 mulberry trees, one Persian and on white.

One Arbequina Olive Tree

Two Jumbo Quince

Two  Black Tartarian Cherry trees

Two Crimson Bunch Grape Vines

Two Thompson Bunch Grape Vines

(We all ready have two concords and a crimson now.)

Strawberry’s we have plenty of and the variety we have planted and harvested from is called Ozarka.

We have a ton of black berry plants, so we do not need any more of those, one red/golden raspberry as well.

But I plan to get the Anne yellow and the fall gold at least one of each plant.

Our goal is to line the drive ways with the fruit trees and have the forest line for grapes and berries.

 

So there you have it a shorten version of life here on Mahanaim farm.

 

4-11-2010

Ok so I have not been on here for a while, but I have been very busy, it was very hard being a CNA, but I guess I get a break from that now and get to go back to being an artist/farmer...Very cool and I have so much to do.

We have a Milk cow now and who knew using four gallons of milk a day could be so  much work.

Here are some photos of Moo and her than new baby boy Israel (who we have just started weaning)

Ask me about about banding a calf...wow that was something to write home about...lol

The instructions that came with the bands and bander are far less than one needs.  It says simply place over testicals...lol

Oh yeah very helpful...no where does how high to place the band or hoe to get the bander tool off.  After a few minutes I figured it out, but even once you do it your not sure you did the right thing.

 

 

 

June 24,2009

Wow did Direct TV throw me for a loop, in with our new programming is a channel called JLTV (Jewish life television).

Here is a link jltv.tv

 Oh my...programming I can watch and enjoy! 

The kids are thrilled as living in the middle of no where has left us with very few others to hang out with...so seeing on Jews and hearing their stories is so wonderful....

 

 

June 18, 2009

USDA-certification for organic scary stuff -about hatching eggs  

Ok I feel sick over a lot of this, but I think everyone else should now too.
We are in the process of becoming certified organic, the whole farm. So far I have found out from the nice USDA guy Ron, who was a guest of our farm today, that in order for the pastured to be certified organic all they need is not to have had any chemical fertilizer on them in the last three years as well as not having been sprayed for bugs.
So I am guessing in a way any one who is negligent on doing there lawn work might qualify...lol

I asked how they know that you have not done any of the above things to the ground. The answer, we make you sign a paper saying that you have not. Wow really! I wonder if that would work for other stuff....hmmmm
Any way that appears to be the first thing on the farm that will be organic...the fields, it's funny in an odd way really because the animals that graze on this nice yummy organic grass will still not be organic for one generation,( that's right order your organic lamb and wool for the spring). The babies have to been in 2nd trimester I think she said to be born organic, hmmmm who new...lol
 

The birds on the other hand will have you laughing.... ok stick with me know because I have answer the worlds oldest question. The egg comes first, no really you can stop laughing now. A non organic chicken lays an egg, eating the same organic feed as it's babies will. However the chick when it is 2 days old is organic, the mom is not. Oh it gets better, the first day you can give those chicken any thing and it is fine, but day 2, you better not or it will not be organic. I kid you not. So in order to sell "organic hatching eggs" I have to raise the chicks from the eggs of my "non organic chickens".
There future eggs are quasiy organic, as there is no true defection for organic hatching eggs. so if you buy eggs from us as organic, feed them nonorganic feed, they go back to being regular chickens. Oh what folly when others make the rules.
So yes we are still going to do. We are going to start with the quail and work our way up from there, gonna be eating a lot of yummy fat non organic birds this winter...

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Death of our beloved Roy....
Current mood: grateful

 

Well today we found Roy sitting up with his ladies, he had passed away in his sleep.  I wonder if he ever knew that it was his act of breeding all our girls and some of our friends goats that he would live on forever.  It is because of him that our once tiny herd has increased to over 20 girls and a few fellas.  He even bred one of my sheep..lol 

We stated out with baby our most beloved Nubian milk goat.  She was our first milk goat and cost me a small fortune to acquire.  She was in milk when we bought her and gave us milk for over a year before we realized we needed to freshen her. When we bought her I was told she was only three years old, well it was closer to 8 or 9 and shortly after kidding she died, the birth was just to much on her.  We stayed pretty much by her side and did all we could spending more caring for her, than she had cost us in the first place.  No price is to high for that of a loving and loyal friend and we gladly would have given more if it would have saved her.  Before she died she had her three beautiful little does.  . We bottle feed all of them .Only one survived even with our best efforts and she is the most lovely little goat. My husband Michael had named our little ladies.  Death, who died first, Famine who died next in my arms after only two weeks of life and than Pestilence.  Our joke is death will always die, famine is short lived but pestilence lives on.  Pestilence is a wonderful little goat with supper long ears who will make beautiful little babies at some point. 

We were truly blessed in having them both in our lives and we will bury Roy next to his first Wife Baby and we thank HaShem for the time they both spent in our lives...

Be Blessed and Be Wonderful...Shekhinah

 

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Sassafras and other herbs and plants that grow here...
Current mood: cheerful

 

Ok so today while at our friend's house I asked about Sassafras because I know.  I could not find any thing that looked the photos in my book.  I found out there is a different sort of sub variety here in Arkansas and Missouri .  So I now have leaves and know where it is on my property. Always find some old timer to help you find the plant you are looking for, that's my advice.

To my great surprise he told me that people buy this stuff.   As strange as it seems people will buy leaves, wood, bark and roots of this tree and pay top dollar.  Some one on Ebay is getting $12.00 per pound for the leaves and another is getting almost ten bucks for a flat rate priority box full, plus the buyer is paying the shipping.

I know it weird right!  I use the roots for tea and have a sort of paddle I use to stir the soap, but have never given it a thought that it had a market value to anyone else….So I guess we are planning to offer it up for sale, like our soap and other products.  You never know the value of the stuff you have laying around.

I guess I will hang out with a few old timers and find out what wild indigo looks like, and goldenseal as well as ginseng.  They all grow wild here…I am really excited about finding wild indigo so I can use it in the fall to dye our cotton and our wool.  Golden seal is good for healing and a bit pricey, so I will enjoy not having to buy it again and ginseng we do use but right now it is being bought here for $275.  Per pound so I think I would have to it and by Koran ginseng instead…lol

Be Blessed and Be Wonderful

 

 

 

August 1-2007

Off to go a trading.....
Current mood: working

 

So off we go to trim and shoe a few horses, trade for some replacement handles and soap. 

Trade and barter is a large part of our lives.  We very much enjoy the interaction with others and sharing their special work with our family.

So if your out there and you haven't tried to barter with a neighbor, give it a shot...You meet new people and maybe even learn a few new things.

Be Blessed and Be Wonderful

 

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Quails everywhere.......

 

Wow we had a great hatch over 70 new baby quails born yesterday.  Out of 80 eggs we had 78 hatch, 2 near hatches. One did nothing...poor little thing. 

So we have gone from worrying about having enough quail to lay eggs to having a whole bunch.  Our first babies have long since been laying and they are all doing great.

We even sell eggs on the net and on Ebay...Funny how it all works out...

Our a sadder note more poor old billy is about to die any day....It's so sad he can barely walk and has to be brought food and water now.

Michael is going to build a little lean to for him to keep him out of the weather and such...We move him and clean under him since I can no longer get him to stand.  

He has been a great breeder..and has left us many daughter and a few sons. 

Other wise we are making soap...and just sort of hanging out here on our little mountain.

Be Blessed and Be Wonderful

 

 

July 30-2007

Dealth of dear fiends...Bottom of the hudson-Band
Current mood: sad

 

Dear Friends, Let us together morn this great loss of musical talent.  I have many of their cds and met them and befreinded them a long while back.  Never would I have thought I would have writing this letter today.  But I ask that anyone out there that reads this, does all they can to help the familys of these good men.

Please read on and Be Blessed and Be Wonderful...

Philadelphia/Brooklyn band Bottom of the Hudson suffered a serious van
wreck on Sunday, July 29th, while returning home after the final date of
a short East Coast tour to promote their new album, Fantastic Hawk,
released just two weeks ago on July 17.  While on I-40 near Clinton, NC,
a tire blew out sending the van out of control and flipping it multiple
times.  Bassist Trevor Butler was killed in the accident and drummer
Greg Lytle is currently in ICU in Chapel Hill, NC.  The other members of
the band, Eli Simon, Michael Prince and William Chesterton Chambers,
suffered minor injuries and were released from the hospital.
We didn't have an opportunity to get to know Trevor Butler as well as we
would have liked, but he was a great guy and a great musician.  He was
instrumental in the evolution of the band's sound over the years.  In
addition to playing in Bottom of the Hudson for the last several years,
Trevor also was a founding member in fellow-Philadelphia group Coyote.  
He was utterly devoted to music and helped many, many bands set-up shows
in Philadelphia.  We are devastated by his loss and he will be greatly
missed.  Our thoughts and prayers go out to the band and their families.
Services will be held for Trevor Butler on Thursday in his hometown of
Myrtle Beach, SC.  Thanks to everyone who has sent condolences and
well-wishes.

We are currently accepting donations via Paypal  (the address is
both@absolutelykosher.com) on behalf of Trevor's family and for Greg's
medical bills resulting from the accident.  A benefit show is being
discussed, but we're all still reeling from this tragedy.  We will
update our home page (
www.absolutelykosher.com
, which also has a
donation link) as news of Greg's condition and progress on further
fundraisers comes in. Your generosity in this difficult time is
appreciated.

best,
Cory Brown and everyone at Absolutely Kosher Records
C
www.absolutelykosher.com

 

 

July 29-2007

Ok so as most people in the world know I am working on having our little farm become more and more self sufficient.  So far Michael and I  make and use our own soap, dish soap, laundry soap and such.  We raise a lot of our own meat; sheep, goats, chickens, ducks, turkeys, geese and pigeons and of course our quail.  Our Goats and sheep also provide us milk which we make into yogurt, cheese, cream cheese and of course the above mentioned soap.  We shear and spin the wool from our sheep and have future plans of weaving some and crocheting and knitting as well.  We also hunt deer in season.  We do tan our hides, just incase you wondered… Very little goes to waste here...

We can what we grow, tomatoes, peppers…and a whole bunch of other stuff.   We make our own jams, jelly and the like.  The herbs and such we raise we dry and use all year round. We have learned to cook a lot of food from scratch and not to buy any where near as much prepared food.

We log our wood with our own horses; we use it to heat with and sometimes cook. 

In the fall we plan to fire up the forge and make some new tools and maybe make a kiln so I can have some new dishes…lol

But in the mean time I am learning new tricks to make life a little better for us.  Because we have chosen to live in the middle of no where thinks like soy milk and tofu and such are hard to come by and a bit pricey.  However soybeans are cheap…around $9.00 for 50lbs/22.680 Kilograms….that is a lot of soybeans.  It takes only a little less than one third of a pound or 125 g of soy beans to make a little over a quart or one litter.  That mean you could make over 150 quarts or litters of soy milk for the $9.00.  We buy soy milk by the half gallon now at a cost of around $3.00 or so; cost $222.00 not including tax.  Yikes!  So I will save at least $213.00 plus I am making it myself.  It has a by product as well.   The insoluble material which remains is called okara, and can be used as an ingredient for bread making in other form of cooking or as feed for chickens, sheep, goats and alike.  So there is not waste.  Anyone who wants to try and make soy mik just drop me an email and I will tell you how to make it.

No on to my other favorite food of soy…Tofu…Yummy white creamy stuff you can also make yourself for just pennies really.  You need to make soy milk and than you need to heat it a bit just like making cheese.  You a little calcium sulphate-food grade of course or magnesium chloride and it sort of jelles up .  Next pour into a cheese cloth lined mold and wait. 

Yogurt from soy just as easy…need any help just email me.

I plan to use soy milk to make soap as well….I will let you all know how it works out. 

 Ok guys got tons of stuff to do and learn...

Be Blessed and Be Wonderful....

Michael and Shekhinah and all the kids and critters here on Mahanaim Farm....

 

 

Friday, July 27, 2007

July 27 2007

Chickens- geese
Current mood: cheerful        

 

Had a great day to day on the farm, sold a few chickens, a pair of geese.  Less to feed I say...lol  Had a baby goose born and had a goose who just the other day hatched out four of the little loves.  Incase you did not know geese are like crazy protective over there little ones.  So I am keeping my distance.

I have got a blooming ton of quail it seems and more are due to hatch in the morning...guess I will be busy, worst things to do I suppose.

Still making and selling soap and plan to sell to all the National park real soon, so wish me well.

Big hugs for now, got to keep it short it's almost dark....

 

7-15-07

Making soap has become almost a full time job on Mahanaim Farm.

Who would have thought old world skills could generate a profit.  Making homemade soap how ever profitable is a time consuming job.  Just heating the oil can take well over an hour and must be watched the whole time.   It is hot sweaty work. 

Some words of advice to anyone thinking of making lye soap:  Use frozen milk or almost frozen other wise the lye make the milk heat up to quick and it turns brown.  It sort of burns…or even worse curdles the milk causing the soap to weep for days after it has been made.  The milk and lye should turn orange when you are stirring it, and you can stir it for about an hour. It is going to get super hot and you than have to wait for it to come down to the temp of the oil before you can go any further.  Some people use a hand blender to mix the oil into the lye and milk mixture. That cuts the time down to about 10 to 15 minutes.  If you use a mixer beware that you will have to pour your soap quicker than if you hand stirred it.  It is only really important if you are pouring mold or adding scent or herbs. 

Some other neat things you may want to know, soap when cured in most cases will turn white, if you have done everything right. 

Never take soap out of a mold before 24 hours have elapsed it can make a real mess. 

Leave your self a good two weeks before you need to do anything will the soap, to cure it leave it in a well vented area and turn at least once a day. 

As far as supplies, I use Kosher Vegetable shortening and a blend of other  Kosher oils.  The oils change depending on what type of soap I am making.  What Oil do I always add, Olive oil of course, it gives the soap a creamy consistency that I like.  Keep in Mind I only use kosher ingredients in my soap, I recommend you do the same, as they are finer quality most of the time.  When buying thinks to make soap with as well as food to eat always look for the Orthodox Union seal, a plain K could lead you to an inferior product such as Dannon Yogurt ( email me at: raziel133@yahoo.com  to find out why I do not buy their brand and why it’s Kosher by Name only!) 

Making your own soap is a gat way to be eco kind and show you family that you love them in a whole new way, so go and make soap already…What you don’t have a recipe…Well I guesses I can give you one, heck I will even give you one to make laundry soap and save not only tons of money but again be eco friendly.  So here goes.

First get everything together from the list, you don’t want to be wondering around you kitchen for hours.

3 pints of near frozen milk-I use goats milk

12 oz of Red Devil lye-You will need a glass measuring cup for this one as the can has 16 ozs in it.  Do not use lye with aluminum in it is toxic to every on and every thing and can not be used in soap making.  Make sure you can says: 100% lye on it.  Also make sure to shake it in the can as you do not want clumps in it.

5 and one half pounds of Kosher Vegetable shortening-This is just under two really big cans.

2 oz of Kosher glycerin-That means it plant based, believe me you wouldn’t want the other stuff.

2 tablespoon of Natural Borax-yes they still sell this in the grocery store-Wal-mart has it for sure.

A third cup of honey, any Kosher kind will do, I even have a deal with a local store to buy the crystallized honey at a cut rate.  Yes it is fine to use and eat, just reheat it in the microwave or the stove top.  Save you bunches there.

This is a basic recipe so I am going to tell you how to color it up a bit, you do this after is had taced.

A teaspoon to pound of soap is a good starting place when it comes to adding powdered herb or such. Cocoa Powder for brown, cayenne pepper for pinkish peach, turmeric for yellow and paprika for pink.  I use paprika in my strawberry field’s soap.  Do not use food colors or cake decorating colors as you will not get the colors you want and just end up with a huge mess.

To scent my soaps I use extracts and candy maker oils.  A small amount goes along way.

Ok back to making soap…

I heat up the Vegetable shortening first; it needs to come up to 90 degrees.  It will be hard and you will end up heating it a bit more than that, so just take it off the burner and go to the next step while it cools….

Well done you come this far!  Let’s continue…

Get out a stainless steel or unchipped enamel pot; put your almost frozen milk in.  Next ever so slowly add you lye, stir, stir, stir and keep stirring.  You want this to come down to around 85 degrees or so.  Than you can slowly ad the 90 degree oil to it.  Stir, stir, stir until you see it tracing.  Tracing means to thicken kind of like a loose pudding…when you can stir it and it sort of leaves a make across the surface… email me if you need to see a photo. 

At this point you can add your color and scents, and either pour into soap molds or a wet towel lined cardboard box, you don’t want the soap to be thicker than about 4 or 5 inches for best results. 

Now leave it alone fro 24 hours at least…I mean it, I know you want to go poking your finger in it but don’t!  I promise your messing with it will not make it dry any faster…lol

Ok so know you have bar soap, so what can I do other than take a bath or wash up, well you could make the greatest eco friendly laundry soap the world has ever know and hey it’s easy.

Ingredients:

Well or Rain Water-

A third of a bar of your newly made soap

½ cup washing soda-not baking soda, they are very different.

½ cup borax powder

A five gallon recyled bucket-please do not go out and buy one, ask you friends if they have one, go on Freecycle or ask a painter or drywaller…They throw them away all the time.

A quart of hot water

 

 

If your bars of soap are about regular soap size you can grate down about a third of the bar.

You are going to need to use the stainless steel or unchipped enamel pot again…

Ok so into the pot you are going to place around 3 pints of water, if you don’t have a well like us, use gathered rain water for this soap.  It will act as a fabric softener as well if you do that.

Ok, so back to the laundry soap.  Into the water add the grated soap to the water stir over medium heat until dissolved.  Now stir in the washing soda and borax.  This will make a bit of a slurry and that’s fine, it’s what we want.  Now pour this into a five gallon bucket and add the hot water…Give it a good stir.  Now if you want it to have a scent you can add it now about a teaspoon of extract or essential oil is plenty. Now cover the bucket with a loose fitting piece of used, clean aluminum foil.  Leave it over night and in the morning you can bottle it up and use it.  You can use plastic milk bottles or old laundry soap containers.  I really like one gallon vinegar bottles, they are just easy to store and handle at least for me. 

 

Well there you have it, give a try already!  The only thing you have to lose is the store bought soap.

People ask me what I most like about my soap, other than the low cost.  I tell them I like being able to make any scent I like and knowing exactly what is on my soap.

If you would rather not make your soap and you want soap just let me know I sell our soap for $3.00 a bar and make many flavors that I know you would like.

Be Blessed and Be Wonderful

Shekhinah

 

 

 

 

7-12-07

Lately my email has been full of people wanting to know more about how to start being an eco happy homesteader….so I thought I would tell you al little about what we have done. 

So here we go…

  1. We decided to see what we could live with out. 

We decided we could live with out eating out more than once a month; this saves gas as we live 15 miles from anywhere.

     

     We could live with out brand new cars…

     Mine will at least run on ethanol. 

     We own a lot of classic vehicles.  -A 1978 Jeep Wagener that was my dream car.

     A custom 1988 Cadillac, a 1989 Buick Le saber custom (We are selling this at the car show this September in   Mammoth Springs as it has fuel injection.)

     A wonderful 1987 ford retired gas powered U-hal Truck.

    

     With out brand new furniture…If we want it will build it, buy it used or post for it on FreeCycle or trade or barter for it.

 

      Trips to the salon, no store bought hair cuts.

      Along with that no store bought makeup or lotion or chap stick….We make most of these our selves.

    

      Pet treats-We make these our selves and even sell and trade with others.

 

      Contract Cell phones….Gosh the money you can save here is amazing. 

      We have four cell phones and went from paying $152.00 a months to a scant $60.00.   

 

       Credit Cards-buy it with cash or don’t buy it…

 

      Mortgage, home owners insurance and the like (yes I have car insurance). 

      Car insurance, the cheapest source I could find that did not base you insurance on credit-The Hartford.  $92 per month full coverage on them.

      If you want to know about the insurance on you home and how it is a scam email and I will be happy to tell you all about it.  

 

      Mail order coffee, I will live with what I find at the grocery store…

 

      Paper magazines-I can read most magazines online for free and save the trees and money. 

 

      Incandescent lights- We chose to replace all the nasty energy consuming incandescent lights with thrifty florescent ones. 

      Cost of 22 florescent light bulbs= around $100.00 with tax in Arkansas

      Savings about $15.00 per month in electric-over all each bulb has a life span of at least three years

      This means they will not only last about a hundred times longer than the old bulbs, but will pay for them selves very quickly.

 

      Washing our clothes in warm and hot water….we only wash in cold water now.

 

      Zip lock bags-buy a Seal-a-meal, for the money you will get more and it is more eco friendly…plus you can use it to reseal all kinds of bags.  You can even reseal chip bags.

 

      Some other changes we have made in our lives are:

 

      We reuse almost ever container we bring home at least twice. 

 

     We make our own eco friendly soap, (this saves fuel and the eco system).

     We also make our own laundry soap…

      Feel free to ask for the recipe…

    

     We make one trip to shop instead of many:

     

     We try hard t o buy locally grown meat, if beef only Angus, it’s grown cleaner and is local.

     We also raise and eat our own old world sheep, goats, chickens, turkeys, geese, quail, ducks and pigeons.

     We milk our goats and sheep to make soap, cheese and of course just for milk as well.

      We eat our eggs from our free range chickens and ducks.

     When ever possible we buy local produce or raise our own from heritage or heirloom seeds. 

     Our potatoes this year will be blue, red and Yukon gold.

     We can our produce and also make our own jams, jelly’s and wines when ever possible.

     We have our own apple tree, pear tree, prisimon tree and a small mulberry tree as well as a tom of wild Black Raspberries.

     Currently we have our own Bay leaf tree and many herb plants.  Sage grows very well here as does basil and mint.

 

     To heat our home we burn good old fashioned wood…we try hard to gather wood that would otherwise be wasted, plus it’s free….

     We have logging horses that help us and we love them and our glad that they have chosen to share their lives with us.

 

 

     We joined Freecycle to give away things we don't need that might otherwise go into the land fill.

     If we are looking for a part or an item we need we ask on Freecycle first.

 

     We also compost all our food waste that the animals don't eat and use only organic fertilizers on our land. 

     We raise cute little bunnies who help us with this…

  

     Well anyway this is some of what we do…I am sure it gives you an idea or two of your own….

 

                                                            Be Blessed

                           Shekhinah, Michael and all the kids and critters here on Mahanaim Farm

                                                   www.goldendovegallery.org  

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5-07-07

What a week...We raise ducks but bartered for more in hopes of turning over some quick cash. So now we technically have most of the endangered farm ducks out there. Sadly our van broke down the day of the swap and we never made it.  Hoping next week will go better I am preparing to make animal treats and Lye soap to take with me. 

The jeep may be back up and running, we have not tried to drive it yet.  We have dumped a lot into it, but I think in the end it will work out for the best. Classic cars require work, so what you gonna do? 

I found a newer jeep for $800.00 and have considered buying it.  I could trade the Cadillac for it maybe or even the Buick, it's hard to decide.

Money as always is tight and we make the best of it all, trying to make things last as long as we can.

 

We acquired quail a couple of weeks ago and they seem to be doing very well.  They are Cortinex Quail and lay about 300 eggs a year or so...not to shabby there, plus they go from hatch to laying in 7 or 8 weeks.  They are tiny but fast and easy to raise, I give them a thumbs up.  You may be asking your self what in the world are these little quail good for, well I will tell you.   You can hunt them as they get flight feathers faster than bob whites.  You can eat them yourself or sell them to restaurants or even sell them to a game farm...they go for around $2.00 each at hatch.  You can sell their eggs for .15 each fertile or not (some people eat them.  I saw fresh quail eggs on line for $9.00 for 6 eggs.  I know crazy but true. They require very little food compared to a chicken and their eggs hatch at about 17 days.  They do not set eggs well.  So it is best to take their eggs away a few times a day. The biggest problem I can see is that they are like the size of a bumble bee when born and can drown them selves in nearly non existent water.  Other than that they are great.

We have a big sportsman incubator and I am guessing you could do thousands of these eggs at a time if you had them.  I have a small flock at the moment only 4 hens and two cock.  I ordered another 4 hens and two more cocks but it will be a while on them.  I get between two and three eggs a day from the ones I have (about 18 eggs a week) but it’s a good start.  I figure I will keep a third of each hatch for breading stock.  So with the 12 birds I should get 36 eggs a week.  I plan to buy 6 birds from the breeder ever 2 weeks until I hit 100.  With that I figure I should get 80 eggs a day or better and be fairly well set.  560 eggs a week would give me eggs to pickle for our use as well as sell and barter goods.  I would have plenty to hatch and plenty to eat.  In theory you could make un- believable money with them if you did it right.  One of our friends in trying to talk us into raising them for slaughter, but in truth I think that is a lot of work for the return.  I can get $2.00 each at the swap for the little guys with no effort, why would I want to have to clean them to make a quarter more per bird.  You know…

I have about given up on hatching chickens for sale, yes there is some money to be made but people are fickle and the cost of feed high.  I do better with ducks, geese, turkeys and the quail.  I still want to buy Peacocks and hope to have some soon…ducks you can get $5.00 a chick all day long, geese I get $7.00 each and turkey’s $7.00 and than of course the $2.00 for the quail.  I plan to get $25.00 for baby peacocks.  We have talked about getting swans in the future.  You can get an incredible $200.00 for each chick or $800.00 per full grown pair.  For now we need to create new and better pens for our bird and get ourselves a bit better established.

 

Anyway have to go and make soap so I can afford to become bird rich, lol…

Hey take a look at our buck money...lol

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4-23-07

I have Toulouse and African grays both are laying in full mode and I have breeding pairs available of the Toulouse for sale.  I bought more Turkey Hens and swapped a tom since mine were being, well Turkeys , but not in the nice way.  I have changed my Turkeys feed as well to make sure they have enough protein and such and have started giving them chicken and duck eggs shells to help with calcium and the like.  I have been at it for a few days now and hope to have eggs soon.  I think part of the reason that they and the peacocks are not laying maybe the weather.  They need a lot of light to trigger their laying response, so I am going to keep up on the feed, keep them penned for now and hope that it will work it’s self out.

I bought a Blue Slate hen, a Royal Palm hen and a Bourbon Red Tom.  This week I am picking up a huge Bronze tom.  So I should have a good pool of birds to breed from.  I also ordered some Blue Slate chicks form a friend and a few Royal Palm chicks for next years run.  

The Blue Slates are neat because they have been in Mexico for almost 3000 years as a pure breed.

I was gifted six turkey eggs, which are currently in the incubator now.  They are a Bronze and Royal Palm Cross, my fingers are crossed as to weather they hatch or not since she did not know you have to have the pointy side on the egg down, so they may be dead. Anyway I should know in a few days. 

We have to leave the farm for a least a little while today as our eating chicks are in.  We ordered Jumbo Cornish X Rocks.   At 6 to 8 weeks these guys are ready to be dressed out.  I think I ordered 50..I guess I will know in a bit..lol  

For this upcoming Saturday I have to pick up our new pairs of Cortex Quails .  These quails go from hatch to laying in just six weeks and seem easy to dress out.  we hope to pick up a little side line money and trade with them.  

Sunday I have to pick up our new Bronze Tom.  Can't wait to see him.  

Aside from all this it's a sort of rainy day and I hope to get some of the planting don a little latter today....and maybe make some soap....

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4-22-07

Wow, so on Sunday we drove an hour and a half away to go to an animals swap up in Birch tree, Missouri .  We normally go to the closer one in West Plains , Missouri on Saturday but the weather was not cooperating, on Saturday it was cold and wet.  This makes it hard especially since our youngest 2 boys go everywhere with us (up we even take them to work, no daycare for us…).

 

We had a good time though and if you ever get a chance stop and visit Birch Tree, its such a nice friendly quite little country town. The swap is in their downtown park and it free to set up and free to visit and yes there are restrooms with running water near by..lol

 

We did very well selling our less loveable Muscovy Ducks, a few pair of hens and roosters, some geese and a few pigeons. Some other odd stuff sold as well so we did ok.  It was really fun to hand out with other homesteaders and farmers in such a nice laid back setting.  The park there is quite lovely and our Rachael and Elijah had a great time playing there while we worked.  All and all we met some very nice people, got a lead on some new registered Jacob Ewes that are for sale and may have even found some one to shear my sheep.  The nice lady who should be calling here at anytime is also a member of the spinner’s guild which I have been invited to join.  I will join I think, but I will have no time to make the meeting sadly, but it is so important to support groups like the spinners guild because of all the people they reach out to.  They are the teachers of tomorrow. 

 

Our sheep and our new little lamb...

Please help us welcome our little little love Shabbat our newest Jacob Lamb...

Born in the early hours of the morning...isn't she the cutest little thing..

                                   

                This is the happy mom  Lamb of G-d , we call her LOG                               This is Moses the happy dad...

We have other Jacobs that should be born soon so check back for more photos.  

Each one born here helps save these precious animals from extinction...

We are in the process of acquiring a few new ewes this year form the registered national herd, they are a bit pricey so we will be working very hard.  So if my posts slow that will be why...

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April 08-2007

New baby Goats and a little lamb

Oh my so many new babies...

 

These our Chava's babies... 2 sweet little bucks-both are for sale.

Dam Chava-full blood La Mamcha/Sire Roy-Full blood Nubian

 

Buffalo (a buck) -Dam-Jubilee Nubian-Alpine Mix/Sire-Roy-Full Nubian March-2007

 

Billy (a buck)-Dam-Jubilee Nubian-Alpine Mix/Sire-Roy-Full Nubian March-2007

Miracle( a doe) -Dam-Jubilee Nubian-Alpine Mix/Sire-Roy-Full Nubian March-2007

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Jan 05-2007

Sheep, Goats and CL

Some things I just learned about Sheep and Goats.

As most of the members already know I raise Jacob Sheep and Dairy Goats.

Where I live here in Arkansas where an illness known as Caseous Lymphadenitis is running ramped among most of the herds out here.  The test to check you’re herd can be costly if even available and most of the time requires there to be abscesses all ready on the body of your sheep or goat.  

In my humble opinion by the time you see these abscesses it’s already to late as this can be one of the two forms of this disease.  One being internal abscesses and on visible on the out side of the animal.

I decided a while back to vaccinate the all of my herds against this disease as it has no known cure at this time and the most vet prescribed way of treating it is culling the animal maybe even the whole herd.

 

Well after waiting weeks and weeks for the vaccine to get here it finally came.  The Vaccine in made by Colorado Veterinary Products.  It of course says for Sheep…only aghhh.  So I ask the feed store person about this and he says it should be ok.  I roll my eyes go home and of course call the company.  I do find out that there are coming out with a goat vaccine latter this year and they say it is ok although off label to use this vaccine on goats.

 I also found out that if your animal be it goat or sheep has this disease in hiding it will bring it up to the top so to speak.   You will know he said within the first two weeks but for sure by eight weeks if an animal has it.  A cheap fool proof test. 

The cost where I live for the Corynebacterium Pseudotuberculosis Bacternin-Toxoid is $8.95 for 10 doses.  He told me there would be no missing the sign of external lesions on infected animals and because it is a dead vaccine there is no risk of the animal getting it from the shot. 

In the future as I buy new sheep and goats I will use this and quarantine for a period of two months to help prevent adding potentially sick animals to my herd.

 

I do separate and treat sick animals and maybe close to a break though cure for this disease…time will tell and I will help anyone who has this in their herd if I can.

 

 

Shekhinah

Mahanaim/Golden Dove Gallery

www.goldendovegallery.org

 

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Dec 13-2006

Some photos of our goats and sheep...

These are some photos of Chava our sweet little La Mancha milk goat... due to kid very soon G-d willing...

to learn a little more about La Machas click here...

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December 07-2006

Well we are up and running.

Our roof on the barn has been done for days.  It's solid and should last at least 7 years or so.  We used salvaged tin and will thrown some silver roof coat up as soon as the temp here crawls above 50 degrees for at least a day, (she says with crossed fingers). 

Using the recycled tin from many sources, including friends, the cost of the special screws (They are really long, have a hex bit are self sealing and cost us nearly $400.00 for enough to do the entire barn roof). 

 I have enclosed a photo f the box the screws came in , just incase anyone out there can benefit from it.  We bought these screws at Lowes, beware that in some places theses are special order and Lowes employees including the manager at the Lowes in Mountain Home, Arkansas can be very rude and do not like to special order anything.  On top of that they never call to tell you the order is there.  we where lucky and stopped in to Lowes out of the blue ( Lowes is an hour from where we live) and low and behold they were on the shelf...up our special ordered screws...So we grabbed them and asked where the rest where and were told by the front desk they had been picked up.  ( rolling my eyes, as this was news to me).  We finally did get the screws after almost an hour of dealing with Lowes and there insanity.

The cost of the silver roof sealer...another $60.00 bought at a Ozark Salvage Builders Savage Store in Kosh, Missouri ( one of my favorite stores).  We bought 2 five gallon buckets and should even have some left over for other projects. 

The rest of the cost was in time, which is always too high...lol

The new tin roof should give us  plenty of time to come up with enough wealth to pull it all back off and replace every piece of plywood, a truss or two and new 30 year shingles. Believe me when I tell you , your barn can never be too dry.

Our great plan is to  make bird houses.  They will be made from the scrape we saved from the roof, and the money from the sales will be set aside for a future roof.  I will list them on the main website and a few auction sites.   I and Michael hope to be able to start making these over the next month or so.

Now that the animals are nice and dry we have started working on the roof of the main house.  Because the roof is in really crummy shape and we are planning on building a new house over the next few years we have decided to go over the roof that is there and to replace the none working roof vents with new ones. 
Michael and I gave this a lot of thought  and for us the best way to go was rolled roofing.  Mind you this is not the cheapest way to go, but it should give is a few years to build the new house, so for us its fine.  Our cost per roll is $22.00 and so far we have used 10 rolls and are about have way done.  I have ordered 10 more rolls which should be here sometime Monday.  We had nails left over from doing the roof in Florida so we had that cost covered, but did have to buy a gallon of roof tar which cost $6.00, we bought the kind for wet or dry, it's the best way to go.  with any luck it should all be up this next week.  I look forward to not having to empty pot and pans every time it rains, lol.

Our next really big project will be moving the house trailer off of our pasture and to the back of the little house on the property here.  The back part of the frame is snapped so it will have to be welded back together before we can even think of moving it.  So this means finding some nice welder who wants to come out to the middle of no where and weld it cheap, so far this has not happened.  We did have some friends offer help...but so far it has not happened. We are on a dead line for moving it and have less than two months left to accomplish it. So I hope we actual can do it...

Other things we have done and our doing....

 

We have stocked up on hay and have decided for the most part the round bales which weigh about 500 pounds each are really the best way to go when dealing with feeding large amounts of sheep, goats and horses. These large bales are what they call orchard grass and can cost anywhere from $20.00 on up.  It's really just a mix of grasses and in general is good fodder.  I also  bought a bunch of square bales as well to add a little flavor to their lives. Some alfalfa which is one of the favorites of our loving loyal animals though it is very costly the second cut which has the best nutrition will run you at least $6.00 a bale, most of the time I pay closer to $8.00.  I only feed it as a supplement for that reason.  We also buy bermuda  grass and a really cool blue grass as well as clover in the small square bales.  Square bales weigh about 45 to 70 pounds depending about how tight they are packed and at a cost of between $2.50 to $6.00 per bale are reasonably priced for what you get. When using square bales I can go through a good three bales a day, plus the grain we feed.  Just to let you know my houses eat at least a bale of the small bales day and thus the reason for the bigger bales.  Each sheep or goat gets at least a flake of hay a day.  For anyone out there that does not know, when you break open a bale of hay it breaks up in to flakes almost on its own.  

We also have stocked up on gain which is really hard to do, since they can eat you out of house and home if you let them.  Our goats and sheep each eat about three pounds of grain a day even with the hay. The horses eat about twice that. We use a poultry grain with millo in it as well as mixing it with sweet grain... no pelts kind and a cup of either wild bird seed or sunflower seeds each day.  So on average we go threw about 50 to 75 pounds a day.  

 

Well it has been a long time since I have posted here...boy have so many things happened.

Our horse is now home.

pictures to follow soon.

Aside from that we have had goats born and sadly had goats die. 

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Well it's been a bit busy here...We had a possum get into the hen coop and kill off 22 of our birds.  From this we learned you can never be to careful and to check for holes all of the time.  Apparently a possum can get through a hole the size of three of your fingers. This being said our coop has been rebuilt and redesigned to avoid future problems.  We recommend using a wire with squares less than half an inch square, that way you are covered against the possums, raccoons, and snakes.  Lesson for the chickens well learned...However once we had this done and thought we had it all took care of we found out that the possum being persistent got into my turkey pen and got two of our 3 month old turkey pullets.  The darn thing ate my Spanish back and my blue slate pullets...boy was I hot.  Come to find out they dug under the turkey pen and just pulled the turkeys out.  so we now have extra heavy rocks on the inside and outside of all the pens.  Besides this we have gotten a barn dog to chase any unwanted critters out and keep them out. 
The dogs name is Eagle and he was a rescue animal here in Arkansas, one our our horse shoe clients saved him from death and now we have given him a long term home.  He does a great job so we hope we got this all figured out now, but welcome any advice from anyone out there who has survived this type of crisis. 

We have had over 20 baby chickens hatch over the last few days, we have a grand total of 7 baby ducks to hatch from our pair of ducks so far, so we are making progress on that front.  Around 25 or so eggs should hatch from the sportsmen incubator this next week and another 25 from our old foam one, so I think we will be all right.  No turkey eggs have hatched or seem to be fertile...not sure why, but we are working on it.

The goats are getting full and should have their babies some time over the next two weeks.

Our baby black shoulder peacock chicks are ready for us to pick up, and we bought a miniature horse this week.  I think we will pick up the horse next month some time.  She might make it here to the farm the same week as Élan our new draft horse makes it here.  Still have to put up the fence...lol  Oh well I guess we will get it done.

We have an endless flow of fresh tomatoes now in a full range of colors.  It's pretty neat...though it is really hard to tell when the white ones are ripe...lol  We have green peppers almost every day and cucumbers as well...We picked some green beans but I am not pleased with them and will replant them this week.

Well have to go and get bean plants in the ground and shoe horses so big hugs to you all out there from Michael, myself and all the kids and critters here on Mahanaim Farm ....

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A photo of our ducks Abraham and Sara

Khaki Campbell Ducks originated in England. They are a great dual purpose duck and are excellent egg layers. Khaki Campbell drakes have a green or bluish green bil, greenish-bronze heads and backs with the remainder of the plumage being a shade of khaki tan. Adult weight is about 4 1/2 lbs. for both the drake and the hen duck.

Ours do lay an egg almost ever day. We hatched our first two babies out a few days ago and we have a four or so hatching today.  I will post there cute little photos soon. 

Our plan is to keep any baby hens and to eat the drakes and if we have more than we can use we will sell ducklings.  There is a good market here for baby ducks with prices starting at $5.00 each.  Not to shabby for our little $12.00 investment.

On a sadder note the female pheasant died last night...She will be greatly missed and had to replace.

Other news:

 The garden is doing well.  I planted cantaloupe, yellow summer squash, yellow cucumbers and some more tomatoes before it got to hot to work out there.  I hope to get the silver queen corn in the ground today and a few more tomatoes.

We did get the cabinet incubator set up and stabilized so I can set the first eggs in it tomorrow.  It turns out it holds 72 eggs in each tray and there are 3 trays so we can hatch 216 egg in it at a time...WOW!  I know I could hardly believe it myself.  So I will have the cabinet one and three Styrofoam ones all running at the same time.  I plan to set 36 eggs or so tomorrow.  My plan is  to set eggs every two days, which works out to almost two dozen or so every two days...It will take a short forever to fill the cabinet incubator for the first time but that's the way it is.  From there I plan to remove eggs from the cabinet incubator when the are about 4 days from hatching.  From there I will set them in the Styrofoam incubator to hatch and replace those eggs with fresh ones so that the incubator should stay pretty full.  anyway that's the plan.

Well off I go to set up new brooders for the eggs that hatch today.

Hugs to you all from Michael, myself and all the kids and critters here on Mahanaim Farm....

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Alright June is upon us and life is really slamming...

This week I am proud to report that we have harvested our first red potatoes for the season as well as a few green peppers and a scant few yellows.

We hatched more chicks and have learned to look more carefully at the eggs before we write on them...lol

We hatched two very sweet little baby chickens out of "duck eggs"...so near as we can tell there is one chicken laying in the duck box...lol

I was very surprised when the kids came in and told be we had a baby chick and more so to see it come from an egg clearly labeled duck.

I label all our eggs in pencil with what they are as well as when I set them and due date...it saves you a ton of trouble normally ( she says rolling her eyes)....

We traded horseshoeing for a new to us cabinet incubator with trays turners forced air…the works…Along with that, the guy gave us two commercial brooders, about ten or so quail cages and stands and  two Styrofoam incubators. So in the next month we should be hatching out whole bunches of ducks, turkeys and baby chicks.

Now we need to build more pens outside. So our work is never done.

We finally got the special screws for the roof, no thanks to Lowe's.  I ‘ll tell you what dealing with Lowe's here in Arkansas is like being part of a three ring circus against your will.  So two weeks and $300.00 dollars later I have the screws so Michael can finish putting the tin up…Wet barn no more…Believe me I am thrilled…

Lets see what else can I tell you all about…we knocked out a wall to rebuild under out big back porch and it looks like we may be able to save the porch, but we have to completely rebuild the wall…a job for next week some time.

Still have more tomatoes to go into the ground, corn is started and more peppers and beans too …plus a bunch of other stuff.

Sunday we will have our first four horn (Jacob's sheep) Ram...A beautiful animal who I hope with father a great herd for us.  We are hoping that L.O.G (The orphaned Lamb we raised...) will like him.

 He has four horns which are variegated in color.  His wool looks top end and I think I can put a bit of size on him by fall.  He is just 7 months old and ready for a good romp with the ewes….

It’s funny really we are saving him from going to a private hunting club…Yes some big dummy out there was will to spend around a thousand dollars or better to hunt the little guy because he has long spiral horns.  I know it’s a strange world out there.  I myself could think of a lot better ways t o spend my money.

 

We also acquired what we believe to be a Golden  Guernsey Goat…She is in full milk and quite stunning…apparently these goats are a Anglo-Nubian cross so she is a good size and well proportioned.  She has the most wonderful  long red hair ( says the woman as she rubs her hands ready to spin more wool) and needs a little doctoring  as she seem to have a slight eye infection in her left eye…but I think we can get it all cleared up.
I have to send an email with her photo to see if we can pull papers for her and set her up on a breeding program, my fingers are crossed on this one as she may be one of the rarest of the rare…

So we have done well this week…shoeing horses, buying goats and sheep , acquiring the new incubator and we were even gifted 2 fertile duck eggs for our new incubator one is white and one is blue...so who knows what will hatch for those ( we will let you know...lol).

Oh and last but not least our 7 month old son Elijah has a official tooth count of 8…yup count them 8 teeth, two on the bottom and 6 on the top. 

Dah’veed was gifted a brand new violin from two of our friends and is playing up a storm and goes back to lessons in July some time…

Our oldest Isaiah has got his first real job as a farm helper and is doing great…

Our daughter Rachael is just hanging out being a bum…

So we are off to work now…not going to the swap today...just going to shoe horses, work in the garden and relax…Big Hugs to you all and the very best wishes from all Michael, I and all the kids and critters on Mahanaim Farm....

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Well we are still here, just been busy...

Our first baby ducks hatch today...Photos to follow of course.

 We have learned tons about sheep and goats as well as our ducks.

This week our first new fences should go up allowing us to move the four horn sheep to a separate pasture.

We hope to start selling eggs and our home grown produce in the town square within the next week or so...and that's about it...

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We are now homesteaders (some what self sufficient self maintaining family farm) so the money we earn are money in many ways.  all we earn goes to preserve our little farm and our way of life for ourselves and our children. We have four children, 30 plus chickens, goats, dogs a herd of cats and a bunch of wild life that comes in for free food. 

Our chickens (male and female) roam free during the day at night we put them up to bed with all the love any parent would. We say a blessing over them to G-d for the joy they have brought to our lives as well as eggs and meat. They are spoiled well fed and overly loved. In our current flock all of our birds are healthy and happy and they are great layers.

 We have a full incubator; all of our little darlings look great as we have been candling them every few days.  We are selling our extra eggs, just click here on the chickens to get there....

 

 

 If you raise chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, emu or any other sort of birds found on or near a farm and you want to swap eggs with me just email me at raziel133@yahoo.com and place eggs in the into the subject box....

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We have moved and are now living in Arkansas .  We have taken up homesteading here on top of a small mountain and could not be happier.

We have decided to use this part of the site as a daily ( I hope) sort of record of what we do and learn.  If your reading this and are a homesteader yourself, drop us an email we would love to hear from you, if your thinking about being one drop us a line as well .

We Michael and I, the kids and the dad of the oldest two kids bought the farm really sort of sight unseen. 

We were tying to buy a convenience  store/gas station outside of Hot Springs Arkansas, but the lady well sort of was dishonest about her books.  So as the days drug on, and I do mean drug about six months of days... ( rolling my eyes ). 

At this point  I decided to check out what else was out there, and started surfing the web.

 We had already had the money from the refi of the Florida house sitting in the bank and knew what we could pay in cash for a place.  so I searched I came up with quite a few places that every one in the family thought were nice and than this one.  When I saw it I knew I wanted it, that I wanted to live here.

The land was over 6 acres...Thought that was plenty to start with as I and Michael had long since read "Five Acres And Independence" by M.G. Kains.  We have quite the collection of homesteading, animal rearing, plant growing, green building and off grid living books, including the "Fox Fire" Books ( boy are they hard to find anymore).  In truth we have a better library than most cities...One truck of our move was almost all books, some 60 boxes and I think I still have more sitting in Florida...lol  ( she says shaking her head )

Anyway back to the property...

A long with the six plus acres we saw a huge barn, two houses and a storage building that was the size of my kitchen, living room and dinning room in Florida.  We also saw that the place was a huge mess and stuff was still laying about the place....canning jars and all sorts of useful junk... 

There was a few other small building here but we did not see them till we got here. 

We were using a realtor in Arkansas, which was a lot of work and trust.  I asked her to take more photo's of the place, fuse boxes where the well was, ( as the pump had been taken by one of the family members of the owner...tell you more about that latter).  The basement which till we got here we did not understand the photo's. We had her take photo's of the kitchen as well...

 

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