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Sonlit Acres

Encouraging sustainable living


I am a lover of winter and love everything about it with the exception of the winter rain storms that hit us every now and then. Early spring isn't my favorite, I dislike the wet days of rain and drizzle along with the mud of the melting snow. The snowmobiles that have been used for there winter work are being prepared for their summers sleep as are the the sleds we used to haul the wood. The wood shed is almost empty and the dry wood has been tossed to the front side to make room for next winters wood which we have already started splitting and stacking. Soon comes the anticipation of trees budding, grass sprouting and the garden becoming bare of snow and drying out that brings a new found excitement with the anticipation of getting our hands dirty with the warmer side of the season that will arrive in several more weeks. 

This years garden is all planned out, our piglets have been reserved and will be ready to pick on Friday, our chicks are ordered for a early June delivery has been placed. Our canning supplies have been purchased and we are set as far as the gardening end goes. Dazy should be calving soon and her fresh milk will be a welcomed gift that we have been missing for the past couple of months. Oh yes! The fresh milk, cream and butter is something to be excited about, as well as the homemade cheese curd that we all love. With just a few pounds of butter left in the freezer it looks as though we made it through this time around. Most years we miss in that area but we made the extra effort last milking cycle and it worked out.  Our new bull died on us this winter and we are working on a new one as well as one to breed our girls for next year.  We have no idea what happened to him, He was good and full of energy during evening chores, but gone by morning chores. It's something that happens when you raise animals, we also lost a few chickens and that has put our egg production down. This year we will bring more egg layers onto the homestead as we have had folks asking to buy eggs, we supply a couple of families with them as well as our own and selling those several dozen a week goes toward the grain bill.  

The garden will once again be a large garden with about 8 feet added to one side as well as in length. The extra  space will be planted with squash and cukes this year. We aren't sure where things will be going as a Nation and to be honest my gut says plant boldly. So I'll follow that gut feeling, I believe allot of folks are doing that in our area because allot of vegetable items like onion sets and berry plants are already gone and feed stores are saying they can't get more. This cries shortages and no doubt because many more people are planting gardens than have in a long time. I say this isn't a bad thing unless of coarse you are one getting caught needing something and the shortage has you in a pickle. The only seed I haven't got yet are our potato seed and we have them reserved this year.

This time of year gives me time to watch and ponder things, and sometime what I see concerns me, it is my feeling that planning boldly and maybe even raising a few extra chickens couldn't hurt. If any of you are like us and you have adult children and grandchildren, then we think about what we would do if things went South or life just gets too expensive, we have a family to care for. With fuel prices on the rise again the cost of food will rise as well, and it always seems when fuel goes up, so do the prices of everything else, but when fuel comes down those prices stay only to rise again when the cost of fuel rises. It's a never ending burden for many with families.

I believe homesteading is the career of the future and more and more families will take it up even if it's just to plant a garden or raise some chickens or rabbits, thus the name Hobby farmer. Personally I hate the phrase "Hobby farmer" I don't honestly know why, just hearing what we do called that makes me cringe.  I have always told people that call us Hobby farmers, that we don't do it as a hobby, to us it's a way of life and the way we love to live.

I could go all doom and gloom but I know we can go other places on the web to get all of that one wants, it's that time of year for us, we are caught between seasons with snow that needs to melt and mud that needs to dry so we can get busy at doing what it is we love to do. I'm not sure what anyone's circumstances are right now, but I would like to say, plan boldly and put the effort into it so you can be ready for what may or may not come. Homesteading doesn't mean you're a prepper, (though peppers do homestead.) Homesteading is producing as much of what you need as you possibly can. Some aim high, others just do a little, however much you aim for do it with diligence and have a great time doing it. 


God Bless.



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