Funny Farm

If You Give a Family a Farm

I was chatting with my good buddy, Kristi, the other day and she commented about how they would like to have a farm someday.  So I started in with, “But if you get a farm, then you are going to want animals for it, and then you’ll need a trailer, and then you’ll need a tractor…”  And that was how the idea for today’s blog was started.  So my apologies to Laura Joffe Numeroff, author of If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, but I couldn’t resist.

Our House, November 2003

Carter Family Farm Established November 2003

If You Give a Family a Farm by Nancy Carter
Originally published September 16, 2005.

If you give a family a farm, they’ll want some animals for it.

So you’ll go help them pick out some chickens so that they’ll have fresh eggs.

Then they will want some goats because goat milk is better than dairy, and sheep so they can spin their own wool.

Once they get those, they’ll want a guardian dog to protect them.

And when they find just the right dog, then they might as well get some cows so they can sell grass-fed beef.

But they’ll need to fix up the barn so it will be nice for the animals, and they’ll need to repair some fences.

Once all of that is done, they’ll be ready to go buy the cows so you’ll take them to a farm auction.

While they are there, they’ll not only buy cows, but a few horses, and a trailer to bring them all home.

Once they get them home, they’ll realize that they need a tractor to bush hog their pastures and to move big bales of hay.

They’ll decide that they want to grow their own organic wheat, grass and hay to feed their animals so they’ll need to buy lots of bags of seed.

Since they’re going to buy all those bags of seed, they’ll want a nice full size pick up truck.

Now that they’ve got that nice pick up truck, they’ll decide that it would be just perfect to sell produce from the back at a roadside stand.

So they’ll decide to plant an organic garden. They’ll read lots of books, build compost bins, and bring beneficial insects and earthworms into the soil.

They’ll get hoes and rakes and a tiller and an irrigation system, but the deer and rabbits will start eating their plants. So then they’ll ask you to help them surround their garden with fencing, human hair and ummm other things to keep the wildlife away.

Once they get all of that done, they won’t have any produce to sell this year, so they’ll want to go to the farmer’s market.

And once they’re at the farmer’s market, they’ll see how expensive the organics are, but how beautiful and rewarding it looks to grow their own produce and they’ll want to get back to their farm.


I ALMOST got an alpaca once

As I was catching up on some bloggy reading the other day, I was absolutely touched and amazed by this entry on Smockity Frocks: And Then There Was the Time We Surprised Our Neighbor With an Alpaca for Her 80th Birthday.

I just love how her daughter knew exactly what her neighbor would want, and was persistent about finding not just one, but TWO alpacas, with the money she had been saving. Alpacas can cost many thousands of dollars, but God provided and a very generous and caring alpaca breeder, sold her the alpacas for only $150 and threw in some hay and food to get them off to a good start.

I love the pictures of the alpacas riding in the van and then the big smile on her neighbor’s face when she saw her birthday surprise. Such bliss!

Suri AlpacaIt all reminded me of the time 5 years ago, when I went to a Rare Breed Expo and ALMOST came home with a bargain-basement priced alpaca named Juan.

He kind of looked like this one. It was love at first sight. I was just sure he loved me too.  Suri alpacas look like they’ve got dreadlocks or something! I knew they were offering me a very special opportunity, but the practicalities of getting that thing home and making sure he’d stay in our fence gave me cause for pause.

The owners told me that he could ride home with me in the minivan. They were going to hook him up with a halter and everything for me. (Can you imagine that? A 30-something year old woman driving an hour and a half home with an alpaca she’s just met in the back of the minivan?!) And they never mentioned how lonely that a single alpaca would be. Smockity’s 16 year old daughter knew more than I did. Ha!

I called Tony and he couldn’t believe that I was actually considering bringing an alpaca home in the minivan all by myself. He kept reminding me of that scene in Tommy Boy where they’ve run over a deer, thinking that they killed it, only to have it “wake up” and begin demolishing their car as it tries to escape.

Needless to say, we knew that we didn’t need to make a snap decision like that. Even if it was a great deal. You just never know . . . , but I sure am glad that things worked out for Smockity Frock’s daughter and her neighbor!

And don’t miss this funny about “ahem” foundation garments while you’re over at Smockity Frocks blog. Oh, how we can be so tempted by those items which promise to smooth and slenderize, while forgetting that we somehow need to breathe, stand, use the bathroom, etc… Be sure to read the funny stories in the comments. I was laughing so hard, I had tears in my eyes.

Hope you’re all having a great week. I’m investigating a new route tomorrow afternoon healthwise. I’m going to the Vanderbilt Allergy, Sinus, & Asthma Program in hopes of discovering some environmental or food allergies that might be playing a role in my pain, fatigue, digestive issues, & depression. I really hope that the tests will reveal anything which might be contributing to my health issues.

How about you all? Are any of you trying new things this week? Or have you ever considered getting a new animal, car, etc . . . only to later think, “What was I thinking?”


Enjoying the Flowers

Remember the other day that I mentioned how much I’ve been enjoying my flowers?

Apparently I’m not the only one.

Meet Baby Cluck. She’s our resident backyard chicken diva.

The Chicken Diva

One of my buddies raised her in her backyard and her oldest son totally babied this chicken. She loves to follow you around the yard, be carried, and tucked into her own personal kennel each night. We’re actually hoping that she’ll eventually decide to join with the rest of our flock, but for now, she seems to prefer hanging out right by our back door with the kittens.

Speaking of which . . .

They like my flowers too.


The Kitten Diva

This is the kitten that will be going to live with the friend who gave us Baby Cluck. I think she looks a little like a diva too. I guess it will be a fair swap.

I just hope that my friend has some flowers for her to enjoy. She’s getting a little spoiled.


Meet Our Guests

One day I got a Facebook message (isn’t that how many stories start these days?!) from a friend who had moved away, letting me know that they would be moving back to our area. It was great to hear from her and after corresponding for a while, she asked if we knew anyone who would consider boarding their horses for them while they were in transition.

I tried to remain calm while yelling, “Me! Me! Me!”

She asked practical questions and we discussed the practical aspect of things, but I just remember saying things like, “The more, the merrier,” and “Variety is the spice of life.” I think they are just the cutest things. It’s so fun because they are 3 different sizes: small, medium, and large.

Tucker, King, & Mickey Blue Eyes

The big guy is King. He is a 14 year old Morgan/Draft cross. He is strong and a little on the pushy side, but it’s nice to have a horse that can handle any of us riding him. Oh, and he is highly food motivated. You should see his ears perk up if he hears some apples bouncing around in a bucket.

Hi, my name is King. I love apples and fresh hay in the pasture.

The medium size fellow is Tucker. He actually came from Ken”tucky”. He hasn’t been under saddle yet, but he lets the smaller kids ride him bareback. He’s such a middle child though. Everyone makes a big fuss over how big and strong King is, and how cute little Mickey is. We’re trying to work with him on that so he doesn’t need therapy someday.

The middle child

The short fellow is Mickey Blue Eyes (AKA Houdini). He is a miniature horse and not really much bigger than our sheep, Baab, or our mastiff, Mary Jane. The miniature horse is like the Little People of the horsey world. Full grown, but just with smaller proportions. As cute as Mickey is, he’s actually rather aloof, and quite sneaky at finding ways out of the fence. His personality reminds us of Eeyore.

Why am I here? And why does this sheep keep following me?

We’ve had a lot of fun with them. I think it helped soften the blow of losing Billy. But they’ve also kept us on our toes with some horsey antics. You’ll be hearing more about that. heh heh. I just wanted to start you all of with an official introduction first.

Do any of you have pets that keep you on your toes? I’d love to hear about them.