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Showing posts from October, 2018

Research Question For My Readers

For chapter two. I would like to know how you would define a particular word. There are no right or wrong answers, and your answer doesn't have to be lengthy or profound. Just off the top of your head, tell me what you think of when you hear or read this word.

How would you define?
agrarianism
Thank you for taking time to help!

Research Question For My Readers© Nov 2018 by Leighat http://www.5acresandadream.com/

Sweet Potato Harvest - The Nancy Halls

While Dan's been working on the pantry roof, I've been harvesting sweet potatoes. The mornings getting chillier and chillier and I need to get them dug before first frost. I planted two kinds this year, Vardamans and Nancy Halls. I started with the Nancy Halls.


Nancy Hall sweet potatoes are an heirloom variety and this is my first year to grow them. I planted two rows, which quickly grew to look like one huge bed. The first step was to pull the vines and feed those to the goats. Then I raked back the mulch, 


and the hunt is on.


This variety sprawls both above ground and below. I found the largest sweets directly under the vines, but underground runners went everywhere. I found lots of medium and small ones well beyond the rows where they were planted, even down in the subsoil. That meant they were more time consuming to find and dig than my bush-type Vardamans.

The Nancy Halls aren't a familiar bright sweet potato orange but are more mellow in color.



The real question was, ho…

House Project Phase 1: Back Gable End

Dan lost no time getting started on his new house project. His first step was to put up new siding on the back gable end of the house.


Our siding comes in 4-foot by 8-foot sheets with a barn board texture. Trying to get them up the ladder and hold them in place for nailing was not exactly an easy proposition!


The nice thing about the barn board pattern is that the sheets can be cut lengthwise and put back together with a little filler to cover the seam. You can't even tell it's been cut once it's up there.


You can see our solar attic fan in the photo above. The panel is in the upper right. That fan has really helped keep our home cooler in the hot weather.


Dan would really like to re-do that little back door overhang and extend it out a little farther. I'm glad he decided to just finish the project at hand. It is so easy to get off on tangent projects that are relevant but can also wait until another time


There are still a few things to do to finish this off: squirt some…

Dr. Schultz's Super Tonic

"Let food be thy medicine" is attributed to Hippocrates, or at least it used to be. With the current social trend to question and criticize everything, who knows? Either way, it points to a different philosophy of heath and medicine than is common today.

So who is Dr. Schultz and what is his Super Tonic? I'm glad you asked. Dr. Richard Schultz is an herbalist and former student of Dr. John Christopher. He developed a food-based cold fighter and immune booster which he called Super Tonic. I found out about it from a friend who loaned me a video. That was about fifteen years ago and we've been making and taking it ever since. We recently needed a new batch, so I thought I'd take you a few pictures and tell you about it.

The ingredients can easily be homegrown or found in the produce section of most grocery stores. All are fresh, and preferably organic. I use equal parts by weight, but there's no need to be exact. For a one gallon jar I used about a quarter pound…

Project Next

The barn is done, so what is Dan going to tackle next? He wants to fix the leak in the pantry roof. You may recall that we discovered it last spring ("Leaky Roof") and tarped it until a better time to fix it. Now is that better time.


Our pantry, utility room, and second bathroom were added onto the house long before we bought the place. That part of the house was not reroofed when we first moved in, so it needs it. We decided to replace the shingles with the same metal we used on the barn.




Dan has decided that while he's at it, he might as well put new siding on that gable end of the house. We bought enough siding awhile ago to finish the house, so we have it. We also already have the metal panels for the roof. From the above photo you can see that the whole thing will take some fancy finagling because of how the pantry was added on.

Hopefully the project will be straightforward and without unexpected surprises, but you know how that goes.

Project Next© October 2018by Leigh

Barn! Done!

I think some days Dan thought we'd never get to this point. But it finally did, and the barn is done!


Before I give you the tour, however, I'd like to show you a photo of the original building that stood in that spot.


You can see that the new barn pretty much fills the same footprint, with the carport slab becoming the floor for the milking and feed storage room.

Now, on to the tour. Hyperlinks will take you to other blog posts with more information. This is the milking room side.


Several of you asked me to report how the rainwater catchment tanks worked. As you can see, very well! The problem is that we're not happy with the experimental filtering system Dan tried. It catches the debris, but the water isn't as clear as we like. It will have to be changed but that's a topic for another blog post. As a side note, the tanks are a favorite shady napping spot for our best rat catcher.


Moving around the corner toward the back we're greeted by the girls.


The overhang gi…

Fall is Finally Here

I'm not one who thinks much of what the calendar says when it comes to seasons. Every year we have the calendar proclaiming the first day of autumn to be around the 20th to 22nd of September, but if we're still in the 90s (low 30s) and I'm in a t-shirt getting all sticky and sweaty from working outside, then I don't if the calendar says it's October 9th. It's still summer! Autumn to me is when it's time to pull out my barn sweater and put an afghan on the bed. It's crisp mornings and crunchy leaves under my feet when I go out first thing to do the chores. It's color in the trees as the leaves turn. Until then it's still summer.

Finally, Hurricane Michael pushed summer out of the way this week and let autumn in.



What a difference! All the critters feel it. Time to make that end-of-summer check list and start getting things ready for winter.

How is it in your neck of the woods? Do you feel the change of season? Are you ready for the next one?

Fall is …