Monday, January 3, 2011

A New Year and a New 'Do

I'll do a Christmas post later, but I wanted to do a New Year's post first. A little out of order I know, but what can I say?

Since this post is about the New Year, I wanted to show you my new hair cut. I tend to go for months without cutting my hair, and then wake up one day and decide my hair is awful and I need it cut now. I'd been at that point for a week or two, and decided that when we were in NC to visit my family it would be a great time to get it cut.

It had gotten very long and the ends were looking pretty unhealthy.

Long and straggly looking!

And here is the after! It's not a major change, because I always get it styled fairly the same way- layers. But I got several inches cut off and it made a big difference!

Now I'm ready to start the New Year! I don't usually make resolutions, since I don't really keep them. Plus, I tend to think of resolutions as changes I want to make. I don't really have any big changes I'd like to make, but I do have a few goals for me and our little farm yard.

2011 Goals
-Painting- I'd like to paint all of the rooms in our house. This will have to be done little by little because it's a big job. Our house was painted in the same light putty color (which I like) but it is flat paint. Have you ever tried to wash fingerprints off flat paint? The paint comes right off. My first priorities are the mud room and the kitchen, followed by the downstairs bathroom, the kids' rooms, and then the livingroom/diningroom and hallway area. Our bedroom and the basement are the last ones we'll do since they don't get as dirty.

-Fencing- I'd like to fence in our backyard for the dogs, since it's a pain to walk the pup on a leash every time we need to let the dogs out. We'll also have to install another set of stairs on our deck to be able to let them directly out to the backyard, and we'll have to make a gate for our current stairs so they can't go out into the driveway. The fence will also keep the chickens contained to the backyard and sheep pasture. David is tired of chicken poo on our deck steps!

-Gardening- I'd like to take the time to make a thoughtfully planned out garden this year. Every year I get impatient and just end up planting things wherever there's room. This never works and then my garden ends up a mess. I'd like to actually sit down with a pencil and paper and draw my garden, then make a list of what goes where and when to plant it. I would also like to try not to get bored with the garden in July and let it go to heck. I need to keep ahead of the weeds and not let them take over. I want to maximize our production and actually use all of the veggies, even if that means feeding them to animals or giving them away to friends and family. No more letting veggies rot because I don't feel like picking them!

-Rabbits- One goal for me this year is to finally get meat rabbits. I have been wanting them for a while now, and I just need to get around to building cages and getting stock. I would like to start out with at least 1 buck and 2 does. I feel like this is another easy meat source for our family, and you don't have to pluck rabbits! I've been telling David I want rabbits for my birthday (in April). I feel like that is a reasonable time frame for having everything ready.

-Sheep- I am going to be sending the ram to freezer camp soon (as soon as we pick up a second freezer). Purl is due to lamb in February, and I plan on keeping a ewe lamb from her (if it's a natural colored one). I also need to make plans to find a ram lamb for this fall's breeding. Darla is hopefully bred for May lambs, and hers will be kept for meat or sold. I also want to purchase some electro netting fence so I can maximize the grazing on our property. I plan on seeding some annual rye in the spring which will come up fast and be good for spring/summer grazing.

Goats- Nothing major will change with the goats. June is due in March and I am hoping for doe kids again (don't want to jinx it though!). I most likely won't be keeping any kids, but that may change. Theo is living at his new home and will come back to breed June in the fall. I hope to make use of June's milk with more cheeses and soap this year. I really would like to start selling goat milk soap!

-Chickens- I would like to expand the laying flock so I can get more eggs to sell. I figure I can probably pay for their feed if I sell at least 5 dozen eggs per week. I am considering buying (or hatching) some chicks in the very near future so I can have them laying early summer. I am still planning on raising more broilers this summer, only I will stick to 25 birds at a time to make it easier on the yard and the budget! We're debating buying a plucker to make processing easier. Really that's the biggest setback to our broiler production right now....plucking!

Pigs- I would love to raise a pig or two. Right now I feel like getting a pig is probably more of a dream than a reality at this point, but we'll see how the year goes. I would actually like to get a sow and breed her, but don't tell David. I think it would be easier to convince David we should raise a piglet or two for about 6 months than it would be to convince him we need a 300 lb sow and 12 piglets. But doesn't it sound like fun?!

Budget and Financial- I said this last year and never did it, but this year I will keep track of all of the expenditures for the animals so I know exactly how much we're spending on them. I'll also keep track of all of the sales of stuff from the animals or otherwise on the farm (crafts, veggies, eggs, meat, milk (Oops, can't sell that because it's illegal, hehe), animals, etc). I'd like to try my best to at least break even on the animals. We shouldn't have any major expenditures because just about everything major is already built (fencing, coops, pens, etc). Maybe we'll make a profit this year! I'd be happy with $1 profit. :-) We're mainly homesteading to provide for us, but I'd love to someday turn it into a small business.

Family-As always, I plan on spending quality time as a family. We have a nice family vacation planned later this summer. I'd like to make sure David and I have at least a small vacation for just the two of us. I'd also like to take advantage of some of the local events here. Things like festivals and fairs that don't cost much (or are free) but will really be fun outings for the family. There's so much around home and we tend to take it for granted.

Well, that's about all I can think of for now. I'll be interested to see how much we can get done by the end of the year. Happy New Year!


Jennifer said...

Love your new hair, pretty. At this time of year I'm always ready for a new cut too... Good Luck with everything you want to do this year!

Becky said...

First, LOVE the haircut!! It looks bouncy and shiny!
I love all your plans. I've heard that writing down your plans helps them to become a reality. Yay for the New Year and fresh plan! :)

Kelly said...

Great haircut. It always feels so nice when it gets cut. So healthy. You have many plans and I hope that you will blog as you go so we can be there too.

Deb said...

I forgot to post on here but I saw your hair second!!!!!!!! he he It looks so good and thanks to sister for having you go brave!! Love, Momma

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