June 30, 2009

More Repurposing

Back when AOL sent CD's out by the kabillions there were any number of websites that offered crafty ideas for CD reuse. My FIL was cutting the bottoms out of food tins and hanging them up as flighty scarecrows. I gave him a hand full of old CD's and he was in love. He has them everywhere and you know what? I think they work. We had deer in the orchard eating our three new apple trees so that night he hung them all the way around and the deer haven't been in since. He also closed the gates...not that I think that had anything to do with his success.

We've had some mental gymnastic successes this week. Rob needed a ball hitch for the hay wagon, FIL couldn't remember where they were, and wasn't even too clear on what they were. Then his brain gave a little burp after two days of thinking and he knew what they were and that he could see them in his mind hanging somewhere, and he'd make a shape the size of a loaf of bread. Well that did narrow it down and about 2 hours later I had a string of 'em in hand.

Last year when he was still brightly lit he told me the story of his cow and goat bells and horse shoes. The other day I asked him if I could borrow a cow bell to train my fish (yes...) and he really had to think on that one. About 4 hours later he said "they are behind your head". Yes they were, even though I'd looked over the wall stuff 3 or 4 times.

That is two wins for our side and that leaves a really big cow bell which I told him I was going to ring every time we remembered something...because I live in a fog too. The search is now on for the plumb bob and string that he has used for 19 years to measure the well water. Yes, we could make another one...but we want That one.

Obviously I'm not getting any quilting done, but that's ok, my fabric isn't going anywhere without me.

Tuesday Thankies
A new flag
good doggies
clean dishes

June 27, 2009

Farmer's Friend

In my old persona as a lady in a dress and pantyhose, if someone had asked what a farmer's most often called upon tool was I might have said barn, or tractor, but in my persona as Deva Farmer I've ferreted out the truth. The farmers best friend is baler or baling twine. Sometimes 3 to the bale but more often 2, in a winter of feeding stock a farmer ends up with hundreds or thousands of these strands.

In feeding the cattle and horsing around these bales last winter I learned fairly quickly that the knots are on one side and you cut the bale open at a knot. Then on a snowy day you sit around the wood stove in the workshop and make long ropes of this twine. Out of curiosity the other day I walked around the farm collecting images of all the places we use the stuff.

One of last summer's CD Scarecrows
Parts of an irrigation system, and a spare roll
Ladder hangers
Temporary pull-back hose hanger to keep them out of the way of a project. Since set free as we are cleaning up this Centennial year ('52 or '53) Ford tractor to sell.
Keeping spare light bulbs from going walk-about.
Axe hanger.
Twine central. These are the bare naked nails the twine is gathered on as we open the bales.
I think this is FIL's welding dealiebob. Or something.
FIL couldn't remember what this was for at all. I finally figured out the only thing this long we might need to cover was the tomato growing area. Yes! This is twine in it's natural state, on a bale.
Twine that has lost it's way.
Ah...I spy some screening for another secret project....
hoses anyone?
or chain?
or wiring?
Keeping the baby chicken nursery warm.
Keeping the lids on the garbage pails when going to the dump. Currently housing chicken feed.
Anyone ever watch Red Green? Their duct tape episodes have nothing on my FIL. We took this off a broken faucet the other day, there is about 40 layers of tape and many many wraps of twine here.
In the cow's trough.
And you thought it was staples and wire that held up fences.
On the grapes.
Hey...another backup roll.
How to garrote your DIL...FIL has put this strand across the path between the strawberries and the blueberries to keep the bird netting off the blueberries. You think after running into it 2-3 times I'd remember it was there.
A back up supply to the back up supply
Some kind of past project.
Another past project remnant.
Last year's string bean effort. He thought he could out wit our goats. Not hardly.
This lilac has a near death experience a few months ago. With the help of twine patient is doing well.
A rutabaga (?) tied up for seed.
Garden tools tied up to keep DIL out of them, and lo and behold, another back up to the back ups.
Pretty sure these dishes must have tried to get away at some point.
Yikes...a back up in our pump house. This is spreading faster than swine flu.
Lining out the garden rows.
Tying up the lilies
My orange doorstop.
Temporary leash material.
This one I'll talk about another day. It's a tear-jerker.I'm sure there are more twine incidences but these will have given you an idea of why I think baler twine is the farmer's best friend. And if you've ever uploaded multiple images to google blogger you know what a pain this post was to make. Anything for you guys...
Saturday Thankies
My Rob is home!
Baskin and Robbins
Swiss Chard

June 25, 2009

Diva Farmer

My sister in law fell over laughing when she saw me mucking out the barn a few months ago but she much admired my diva gloves after I told her how tough they were.

These are ladies-who-go-to-luncheons gloves in their former life. I've picked them up for years at garage sales for a dime or so a pair. Way harder wearing than the $3-6.00 pairs at the garden centers, more comfortable to wear, and a lot easier to work in. Try it, you'll like it!

In my ever so handy beautician/farmergirl apron please note the red thing sticking out of the second pocket from the top. A $2.00 pocket knife; yes, I'm officially a farmer now. Also note the ubiquitous orange baler twine making it's second appearance here...much more to follow!

Friday Thankies
Smart Blog Readers who reminded me of camera card readers
Screen doors

June 13, 2009

Balls Anyone?

Chores. Everyone has them. A chore is something we have to do, not get to do. Picking golf balls is one of mine. Nine acres of our pasture abuts a golf course. At least seven of those acres fill up with mis-directed golf balls. Someone has to pick them up...and that someone is me.

Since I have a strong accountant vein (sounds nicer than a compulsive counter) I've decided to keep track this year; how many, what kind. I haven't a clue what golf balls cost, except a friend who visited last year said his are five bucks each. Some of these I can look at and guess they were probably about 50 cents each.

This week's pick: Titleist 47
Pinnacle: 28 (also had the most brights, 15)
Top Flite: 62
Wilson: 24
Callaway: 27
Noodle/MaxFli: 17
Nike: 26
Alien: 6
TiTech: 6
Bridgestone: 11
Oddball: 36
Broken: 4
Week's total 307.
Last week I gave six grocery sacks full to a man having a garage sale :) Saved me driving all the way to the Goodwill. I'll update my totals occasionally~

Sometimes golfers on the other side of the fence will offer to purchase what I'm picking up. Those are great days. Since I don't know what they are worth, and they don't know what they are getting I say how long I've been picking that day and what is their time worth an hour. I've gotten anything from $5.00 to $30.00. One guy gave me a beer.

Saturday Thankies
A sense of humor
That I have land
That I can walk, bend over, and carry heavy sacks

June 10, 2009

After; Or The Case Of The Cobwebbed Duck

Just in and back out for a few hours, back to the computerless wasteland I call home this summer. It is starting to get on my last nerve. As a result of the project in my sanctuary this week, I got to thinking we really need some Koi in my little pond. No computer to info-dig, arrugh!. My M-I-L has a set of 1950's Britannica Encyclopedias, but no joy there, apparently Koi didn't make the grade re: information in those days. As a side issue I did learn a lot I never knew about Korea. From a 1950's viewpoint mind you.
Last year I had three gleaned duck decoys in my little pond. In December we had a flood and one went walk-about to points north, one tried and got tangled in the fence, and one rode the storm and 20 foot flood waters out serenely. Just like people, those little decoys. A few weeks ago I relaunched the one that got caught in the fence trying to escape and she now glides the pond. Except yesterday I noticed she has grown a cobweb between her head and back feathers. Now I'm eyeballing the little boat my F-I-L has hanging upside down in the barn with the idea of getting to, and doing a makeover on the poor thing.
Here is the duck that rode out the storm, all clean and in possession of all her marbles. Perhaps I need to glean a boy decoy, maybe that would perk the other little miss up? Xing-Xing doesn't know what to make of her, I expect shortly he will launch himself off the end of the dock to have an up close and personal conversation.
"What dock?" you say? You have been paying attention! In February I showed the pond in this post and where is the dock? I only thought of the idea recently, and my big brother likes odd ball projects so he came down last weekend and built it for me. I'm $500.00 in materials poorer, but I LOVE my dock! All three sections will float, and the topmost section is heavily anchored to a 600 pound block of concrete. It should stay, should another flood come...
So I stopped by my friendly Ace Hardware and got a lounge chair, and took down my book and spent a lovely late afternoon relaxing, and thinking of Koi...but when you have three doggies, doggies like to be pretty soon my lounge chair was full and I was thinking about running up the hill fast and hiding inside the 5th wheel for some me time.

Oh well, we love each other unconditionally, most of the time, and they never eat my last Popsicle without asking so what better companions could there be?

Wednesday Thankies
It didn't kill me to learn to drive the riding lawn mower. They will never take my diva gloves away from me though...
Chinese restaurants and a pot of tea
(((Neighbors who water plants without being asked)))