Tuesday, March 23, 2010

i am unemployed and still can't get everything done..

i am sure that my expectations are higher but still...

we intend to keep our cow in a pen during the evenings and rainy weather. she just tromps around and damages our little paddocks hunting for a blade of grass. we have so little pasture that we need exacting control to manage it effectively. we have good hay for her that she thrives on. she just needs to be exposed to the paddocks when they are ready.

we have started training her to lead on with a halter. today i built her a pen feeder. it will fit whole bale of hay. it seems cobbled together but that is only because it is made from recycled materials. it is sturdy and will offer shelter for her hay. i will be able to fill it and clean it out easily.

next thing to have ready will be her water source. i have to get a new stock tank and plan rain water collection from the barn and roof of the pen.

i worked until after lunch time on her pen then i needed to paint the shelves that i built last night. oh, did i mention that i built shelves?

i made them out of 3/4" plywood sanded both sides. one of them is simply a book shelf that needs to go over our bed. we have tons of books and never enough place to put them. the other one isn't really a shelf but a cabinet. i scored a locking door with keys and have been intending on making a cabinet for our bathroom for several months. creating a receiver for the latching mechanism was a little tricky. i think that it turned out well.

the door is metal so magnets can hold artwork and stuff.

there is even a shelf for the kids nintendos with an outlet for their charger. those chargers are very fragile and toly eats them--literally. a safe haven for nintentos and games is well appreciated.

our seedlings are having a rough time with damping-off. we have been diligently spraying them with the concoction without much success. i am beginning to blame the soil blocks. we'll see if the next batch with sterilized soil does any better. if not we'll have to make a big strike against the soil block maker. although we don't have a control group that is planted in a normal fashion.

the swiss chard seems to like the heated green house.

tristan ripped the net guard for the trampoline. i told him that he was on restriction from it until it got fixed. he convinced kassi to sew it for him so they could play.

i got the new trailer hitch for the van. i'll try to get to that tomorrow. it'll have to be in the afternoon assuming the rain stays away.

this evening i built two more cedar trays for soil blocks. i might be cursing them very soon.

we had rotisserie chicken for dinner. we got the grill to ease kitchen pressure during summer. having the ability to cook a chicken outside will be great. the stove is usually filled with canning stuff and grills are generally easier to clean up after.


Ron said...

I know the feeling. One would think having time to work on things would solve the problem, but then you just find more things to work on. :)

Nice shelves, very sharp. I need to build a bunch eventually too.

Sorry to hear about the damping off. I lost a few tomato seedlings... but then I planted too darn many anyway. :)

Kids doing repairs... so exciting and scary. Your mini-me's sound like mine. :)


joe said...

Too much compost in the mix maybe? Or try not covering the seeds. This prospect makes some people uncomfortable, but I've seen it work. Alternatively you can cover the seeds lightly with fine vermiculite, or just kind of "pinch" the hole in the soil block (for the larger seeds) to get a bit of soil cover.

Pablo said...

When do you find time to sleep?

Sissy said...

You are doing a very fine job, Carl. That pen looks good to me. Wish I had a saw! A beautiful job on the cabinets.

Frankly, I never have good luck growing my own seeds. Spending money and still have to spend more to go out and buy plants.

My mouth is watering for a bite of that chicken. Hmm, I need a grill and a flock of folks around me to care for. Life is too lonely here on my own.

Renee said...

Wow! You have been busy:) I like the shelves they look so nice.

When we use soil blocks we would only water them by soaking them from the bottom with water...if we sprayed them they would look like a dirty mess. They would not hold together enough.... Don't give up to quick they will save you some money:)

Great job using your time wisely....


Ed said...

In my world, your expectations are definitely a magnitude higher than mine. I spend a lot of time outside working and after reading this, I feel downright lazy!

jojo said...

I'm happy if i get ONE thing Productive done in a day! :) I think you are doing fine!

twofroghome said...

Those shelves are so nifty! Love the magnetic doors, sweet.

Jo said...

I love the orange walls in your bathroom/storage room. When the old wallpaper in our bathroom finally peels itself off I will convince the hubby that orange is the way to go.

Kermit said...

I've read (article below) that cinnamon has some anti-fungal properties that helps with damping off that may help.


Good luck!

katrien said...

Wow, lots done!
I see the hive in the background of some (presumably) noisy equipment. Are there bees in there?

jenny said...

I know the feeling! Seems like when you have a little homestead to run, there is always something to do, especially with 4 little ones underfoot. Our kids are nearly the same ages as yours, so I definitely can relate!

With the Husband working more hours lately, I am on my own a little longer with the kids, so the outdoor projects are suffering from a severe lack of attention. sigh.. You're doing wayyy better than we are!

sherri said...

Putting a small fan near the flats would help stop the damping off. Sphagnum moss aka green moss is anti fungal for damping off as well. About a 1/4 inch fluffed up dry crushed after you seed the blocks.

Really nice cabinet, especially need a plug for all those little rechargable things.

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