Cancelled

I just got a call from the court office. The court date tomorrow has been cancelled. They did not say why.

They sent an email with a selection of dates to reschedule. The nearer dates are in the city. The courts there are a pain to get to, and expensive to park near. The dates at the nearer location are in November and December.

*sigh*

In the end, it’s up to my brother, as he has to book time off work for it.

Well, at least I don’t have to worry about driving on icy roads tomorrow.

The Re-Farmer

Change in plans

Amazing what a difference a few hours makes.

This morning, I had pretty much decided, Costco would wait until tomorrow. Which freed up my day for other things.

I was just starting to make a ham, leek and potato soup when the phone rang.

It was my mother.

After an atypical hesitant start in the conversation, of my mother saying she hoped she wasn’t interrupting anything (red flag! red flag!) she started asking me about a particular plaque that used to hang in the entry, above the doorway into the dining room. It had hung there for many decades, and was it still there?

No. It isn’t. She knew this, too, because we hung a cross of our own up there, made of olive wood from the Mediterranean, with the Lord’s Prayer engraved into the wood. She and I had had a conversation about it when she saw it. That was a while ago, so no surprise that she didn’t remember.

Then she started asking where the plaque was, asking if I even remembered it, and so on. I did remember it, but I did not remember where we packed it. I figure it’s on the storage warehouse. This building used to be a workshop, but it is now jammed full of my parents’ belongings, to the point we can barely move around in it.

She wanted me to get it for her, because she would like it now.

I reminded her that we can’t get to the warehouse because of the snow.

Oh, of course. It can wait until spring and the snow is going.

I pointed out that this is a very small item and would be very hard to find (in fact, I am not even sure it ended up in there, but it’s the most likely place) in all that stuff.

That’s okay, she tells me. It’s very important, you see. It’s patriotic.

The plaque has a Polish eagle on the front, and the Polish national anthem on the back.

*sigh*

Hopefully, but spring, she will forget all about it.

This is something that has frustratingly become more common. My mother suddenly remembers some possession she left behind when she moved out of here, decides she absolutely MUST have it, and then I have to find it and dig it out. Which isn’t too bag when it’s a large item, like a couple of framed prints she now has on her wall, but there is just no way we can keep on top of the little things. There was just SO much STUFF we had to pack away, just to be able to have the movers bring our own stuff out here, never mind the stuff we packed away, clean out and disposed of over the next couple of years. By the time we were cleaning out the old kitchen, we were having to put things in the old storage house in the front yard, because there is no more room in the warehouse. And the storage house is already full of junk and is so far gone, cleaning it up would require haz mat precautions. I don’t think we went in there even once, last year.

My mother has a very tiny apartment. The room I’m now using as my bedroom/office is probably bigger than her entire apartment. She has frequently rejected gifts, in her typically rude manner, because she has no room for them (then showing off the gifts given to her by family members that have been abusive towards her, but that’s a whole other issue…). Now, she’s suddenly wanting these old possessions she abandoned years before we even moved out here, with absolutely no consideration about how difficult it would be to even find these, while also worrying that someone is going to go into the warehouse and steal the things, and ALSO insisting we don’t throw anything away, because “they have value”.

*sigh*

I really don’t think anyone is interested in my late father’s old clothes, or the underwear she left behind in her dresser, along with the piles of old junk they just couldn’t let go of. Yes, there is some good stuff in there, too, but those pieces are literally buried in boxes and bags of stuff.

Thank God neither of them were actually hoarders!

Anyhow, after that conversation was done, my mother started saying she needed to run errands.

Which I will be helping her do tomorrow, thanks to her car being all fixed up, checked over and home again.

Since Costco tomorrow was not going to happen, maybe I should just go it today?

Nope. Not going to happen. Costco will wait another day.

I went back to making my soup.

After that was done, I came into my room and my daughter joined the cats on the bed as we got caught up on things. Even Butterscotch came out for attention, so she stayed longer.

There’s a problem with that.

I have a very comfortable, very large, bed.

It was covered with warm, sleeping cats.

We both got sucked into the cozy.

I fell asleep.

My daughter, sweetheart that she is, got up, laid more cats on top of me, covered us with blankets, then put away my glasses for me. She had some problems with my glasses, though, discovering that they don’t close anymore! LOL

Some time later, I got up, found my glasses, put them on and…

They don’t sit right on my face anymore.

It seems she bent them somehow, while trying to close them. They are so old and fragile, I don’t dare manipulate them too much.

So now I’m wearing my “spare” glasses, which are no longer the right prescription, but right now, the eye strain is slightly less.

Which means my plans for my tax return have changed.

With how much my progressive lenses alone cost, I’ll be lucky if I have anything left of my return by the time they’re done. Yes, we do have insurance, but only a few hundred dollars. Less than what my lenses cost – and that was years ago. At least the eye exam will be fully covered.

I just double checked. The plan covers 90% of lenses and frames, but only up to a certain amount. I go for the bargain basement frames, since I really don’t care to pay hundreds of dollars for a brand name and fancy colours. Maybe I’ll have something left over. We’ll see.

*sigh*

Well, it was nice to think about getting that portable greenhouse for a little while, at least…

The Re-Farmer

Looking beautiful today!

Would you look at this!

As I write this, it’s -7C/19F. I think it was about -9C/16F while I was outside this morning, and we’re still expected to warm up to -5C/23F.

It’s gloriously warm out there!

Funny how acclimatization works. 😀

Before I go on, however, I just have to share this horribly low quality picture of Nosencrantz.

Our cat is broken.

I didn’t want to disturb her with a flash.

Baby girl is enjoying life! She is the most chill cat, ever. Gosh, I’m going to miss her when she gets adopted out!!

We’re still keeping her and Butterscotch in my office/bedroom. Or should I say, we are mostly keeping the other cats out, letting them in only under supervision. Nosentrantz has shown little interest in leaving, though we take her out and carry her around. Most of the other cats are okay with her, but some are not. Beep Beep, Tissue and Turmeric, in particular, are not happy to see her. Mind you, Beep Beep is just a b*** and will randomly go after other cats anyhow, but Tissue and Turmeric will try to go after Nosencrantz, specifically. Which is a bit funny at times. Nosencrantz will be sitting on the red blanket, watching the other cats mill about, un-phased. Turmeric will see her, stand up by the bed and start batting and hissing at her, and Nosencrantz will just look at her, like she’s nuts.

Which she is.

Butterscotch, on the other hand, hardly ever comes out of her favourite corners. She’ll move from one corner to the other, come out to eat, drink or use the litter box, and if no other cats are around, she’ll come out for pets. She especially likes my husband. But she wants nothing to do with other cats! Even if they’re completely ignoring her, if she sees any, she starts snarling. She’s even started to snarl at Nosencrantz, sometimes! She just wants people. No cats.

As for the outside cats, they are quite enjoying the warmer weather!

They are very active outside, and we see them running and climbing all over the place.

With so much packed down snow, it’s become difficult to clean out the heated water bowl. The cord is completely buried, so all I can do is tip out the water into the snow.

Nice to see Ghost Baby making an appearance. I do wish we could convince her to come closer. She’s the most feral of all the yard cats.

I’m amused by the spot on the roof of the cat’s house. Even with snow on it, they’ll sit in the spot above the heat lamp inside. 😀

I took advantage of the warmth and got the burn barrel going, which required digging it out again, digging out the path the the electric meter, then started working on clearing snow away from the house.

Some of it was quite hard packed, and needed to be broken up with the ice chipper.

I think I got about a half dozen wheelbarrow loads hauled away, before the burn barrel was done and it was time to go inside. Not a lot of snow can fit in the wheelbarrow before it all just starts sliding down the sides.

Agnoos really likes it when I’m tending the burn barrel, for some reason!

It’s going to take many trips to clear the corner out. The girls and I will chip away at it over the next couple of weeks, while the temperatures are warmer, but not yet melting. We’ll need to clear away the well cap, too, which is going to be the most difficult part. We did try to keep it clear, but there was just too much snow.

While we have several snow shovels, the ergonomic one in the photos is our best one, and we prefer to wait until it’s free instead of using one of the others. Once I was done, my daughter used it to clear parts of the roof, so we don’t end up with water leaking into the house again.

Unfortunately, she noticed the shovel is starting to crack in the middle.

Crud.

Looks like we’ll have to find a new one sooner rather than later. The other shovels we have are not as strong as this one, and are far more likely to break with the packed snow we have to clear. Except for the one steel one we found, and that one is just too heavy for a job this big!

My husband’s disability pay came in today, instead of Monday. We weren’t sure if they would do that again, and my plan had been to do at least part of the big shop today, if it did. Unfortunately, I was not feeling well this morning. The deli pizzas I picked up as a treat yesterday apparently did not agree with me! So that will have to wait until tomorrow, depending on how I’m feeling. I would have at least liked to make the closer trip to a Walmart. With the paw paw and tulip tree seeds, we’re going to need more soil, soon.

Now, a new snow shovel is on the list.

The Re-Farmer

Pretty faces, and most of a day gone

Just look at who I got to say hello to, this morning!

The beautiful Nosencrantz let me pet her, but wasn’t too happy about me coming any closer, so I let her be.

While this handsome gentleman (yes, we have been able to confirm Agnoos is male – and I may as well spell his name phonetically! LOL) was the opposite. He started off stand-offish, letting me pet him, but moving away, letting me pet, moving away… Then I straightened up and was about to move, then I felt a cat winding around my legs. Yup! Agnoos actually came over for more pets, and I was even able to pick him up and cuddle him!!! Yay!!!

I had a bit of a change in plan today. I had called my mother last night to see if she needed any help with grocery shopping. She said no, but then mentioned the heat wasn’t turning on at her place, and it was very cold. She had just been talking to my brother and he had said something to her about it, for me to check. She couldn’t repeat what he had said, and I couldn’t figure out her paraphrase. But it wasn’t a big deal, she insisted. I didn’t have to come over. She would wait until my brother came out to check it. *sigh* It was a short call, as her program was about to start, so I called my brother immediately after I got off the phone with her. It turned out he wanted me to check the breakers. Which I could never have been able to figure out from what my mom had said! I mentioned her saying she would wait for him to check it, which just left us shaking our heads. Why make him drive almost 2 hours after work, when I’m less than half an hour away and can do the same thing?

So this morning, I did a short version of my rounds, then called my mother up about coming over. It turned out she’d had a sleepless night, so she asked me to come in the afternoon. That gave me enough time to finish my rounds and grab a quick lunch, then I headed over.

The breakers were fine. She though she’d turned her thermostats up to 25C, but it was only at 20C, and wasn’t turning on. So I turned them up. Then, since she knew I would be coming this afternoon, she asked if I could help her with grocery shopping.

I had used her car, just in case that would happen!

So we did that, but as I was folding up her walker in and out of the car, I noticed the seat was falling off. Once back at her place and the groceries were put away, I checked it out. The seat is attached to the frame with a pair of loops, so it’s like a hinge. I could see both screws were getting loose, but one was falling out completely. I flipped it around to look at the other side, and discovered that both loops were already missing their screws on the other side!

Of course, these aren’t ordinary screws. For starters, they needed a hex key to tighten them, which I didn’t have, but I did have a screwdriver with Robinsons tips (square tips: it’s a Canadian thing), which worked well enough.

While I was working on that, my mother made tea, so of course, I had to stay for a visit. 😉 I don’t mind, since I know she is lonely will all the social activities still banned in her building. Still, by the time I was leaving, I had to rush to get to the post office before it closed, to pick up a package.

Oh, and I remembered to turn her thermostats down before I left. When we got back from grocery shopping, the apartment was way too warm, so I turned it down just a few degrees. Hopefully, she will be happy with that!

By the time I got home, I noticed that, while we have a nice, warm and sunny day, the wind has picked up a lot. I had intended to be working outside today, but have missed the best hours for the work. Ah, well. Hopefully, I’ll be able to get some of it done before it starts getting too dark, and the weather holds over the next while. In fact, now that I’ve finished grabbing a quick supper, I’ll be heading out now!

So much work to go, so few daylight hours to do it in!

The Re-Farmer

Our 2021 garden: more firsts, and silly kitties!

Before I headed out to do my morning rounds, we had already hit 25C/77F. By the time I was done, it was already 30C/86F! Thankfully, there was still a breeze and some shade, so it didn’t feel too bad.

I made a couple of discoveries in the garden this morning, but before I get to those, I’ll back track to yesterday evening.

I used the cut off strip of mosquito netting left over from covering our lettuces and beets, some dollar store hula hoops, and lengths of old hose to cover part of the third spinach bed. This is just until we can make a wire mesh cover for it. I also took the trail cam from the tulips and moved it to overlook most of the garden. The only critter I saw in the files this morning was Nutmeg. 😀

After setting the netting up, I moved on to the far beds and blocks to water them. The water in the rain barrel is usually cool, but it was quite warm by the end of yesterday’s heat! On the plus side, it meant being able to use the watering can instead of the hose, and not shocking everything with cold well water, for almost everything. As the water level dropped below half, I started to refill it while still using the watering can, so it would be just cooler water instead of having to switch to the cold hose to finish watering.

I had company.

Rolando Moon has a thing about drinking from puddles! Once the water was absorbed by the soil, she decided to roll on the damp soil, then just hung out. I guess it’s nice and cool. At least she tended to stay in the middle, which is more of a trench for water, as the beans are planted on the sides. No beans are coming up yet.

Nutmeg was also hanging around. I caught him lying across some pea plants, chewing on the trellis twine! The little bugger! 😀

When I checked everything this morning, things were still damp and didn’t need to be watered, but I also spotted a whole lot of these…

The radishes are sprouting! The one in the photo is of the daikon type radishes, but I was seeing sprouts for the watermelon radishes in all the rows they were planted in, too. I was aware that radishes sprout quickly, but I’ve never grown them before, so this was a very pleasant surprise. They most certainly were not there when I was watering last night. 🙂

Then I found another lovely sight.

The first potato leaves have emerged through their mulch! There are the purple fingerling potatoes. Sifting around in the mulch in the grow bags, I found other shoots coming through the soil, but these are the first ones to break through and leaf out. 🙂 I really look forward to seeing how these do in their grow bags.

We have a whole lot of squash transplants ready to go out, but I’m starting to rethink what to do with the summer squash. The plan was to make more beds like with the beans and peas. However, we have that long arc where we’d planted the sunflowers last year. In removing some of the old grass clipping mulch to use under some new beds, I couldn’t help but notice how much better the soil is, underneath. It’s still rocky, but we basically have a long row of soft soil, bordered by concrete hard soil. I’m thinking we should take advantage of this. It will need far less amending than starting new beds. I’m also planning to try staking the summer squash this year, but with our without stakes, deer don’t like those prickly squash plants, so it could act as a sort of fence for the rest.

I sorted through our transplants while hardening them off, and we have a lot of nice, strong melons. Between those and the winter squash, and the two types of gourds that successfully germinated, we might not actually have room for it all on the squash tunnel. So I’m thinking we can plant as much as we can fit of each type at the squash tunnel, then whatever is left over can be planted in other areas. Without trellising, these should spread out quite a bit over the ground, and we’ll be able to give them lots of space, and we would just need to haul soil over to make hills, rather than beds. This would allow us to compare how well they do, between left to grow on the ground, or up a trellis.

What I might end up doing is getting the Montana Morado corn done, first. They are doing very well, but will start outgrowing their cups soon. Since the toilet paper tube pots didn’t work out, I’m really hoping they won’t suffer from transplant shock too badly. In zone 3 gardening groups. I’ve read from people who warn against transplanting corn completely, because they don’t handle it well, to people who say they do it all the time, every year, and have never had issues. I suspect type of corn can make a difference, and I seem to be the first person in all of these groups to try and grow purple corn in our zone!

I’m really excited to see how they do!

The Re-Farmer

Our 2021 garden: old kitchen garden, part one

A change in plans.

Today, I wanted to get started on the old kitchen garden, where we intend to plant the poppies.

This is how it looked at the start.

The hose is from the sump pump in the old basement.

It has not turned on in ages. It’s simply been too dry.

You can see a path has started to form, a couple of feet from the wall. This is mostly from the cats crossing the garden, though we sometimes walk through there, too. The plan was to add new soil against the wall, to plant the poppies, and put in a stepping stone sort of path where one naturally formed. We found some concrete blocks out near the barn that we decided to use for the paths.

But first, it needed to be cleared.

Our first summer here, we did a major clean up of this old garden, removing a fence, cleaning it out as best we could, laying down cardboard, then covering it with straw, grass clippings, kitchen waste, and any soil from various places that we could get it. You can read about the clean up we did here, here, here and here. Yeah. It took a while! (all links will open in new tabs)

My mother had flowers growing here, and quite a few of them made their way through the layers. So did the crab grass and a vine we’ve been fighting continually since moving here. So the first thing I had to do was rake away the mulch, down to what was left of the cardboard layer. You can see lots of roots that were uncovered!!

Most of the biggest ones were from that invasive vine. It used to cover the entire wall until my brother and his wife pulled it down while painting the house, the summer before we arrived. They were causing damage, so we don’t want them growing back.

Speaking of damage, that crack is in the foundation under the old kitchen, which was tacked on to the log cabin portion of the house at some point. There’s a crawl space under there.

My brother told me about fixing the broken attic window above the old kitchen. It never occurred to me that the glass would still be on the ground! We’d laid cardboard over it, and never new it!

Finding glass from a broken window, I can understand. But this?

Why a spoon?

At this point, I was breaking up the soil with the fork and pulling out lots of roots.

Lots of roots.

So many roots.

Which created a problem I did not expect.

I was pulling roots out from under the old kitchen foundation, and the concrete floor of the sun room. In the process, soil started falling out from underneath.

No wonder the windows in the sun room are cracking as it shifts!!!

This required a change in plans. There was no way I was going to turn this into a garden bed, where watering it might continue to undermine the concrete. I needed to get those roots out, then shore up the sides.

It’s a good thing we have a nice big rock pile over by the power pole. We also had piles of smaller rocks we’d gathered from the garden, though not very many.

Large rocks were placed against the wall, soil put back to fill gaps and support the rocks, smaller rocks are added on top, and the concrete blocks were placed to begin the path.

We brought those blocks over in the wagon, which is rated to 300 pounds. I don’t know how much they weight, but with three blocks, the wagon didn’t want to roll. My daughter pushed while I pulled. After that, I only put in two blocks at a time.

The wagon was used to bring rocks over, too.

After a while, it started to get hard to find smaller rocks. There is decades of detritus that has decomposed on them, with a very strong layer of crab grass rhizomes!

As we worked our way down, still clearing away roots, we got hung up by an old rose bush. It took a while, but I finally got it out!

That is one weird looking root clump!!

My daughter was just coming back from a break (we were very careful not to overdo it; the last thing we need is to injure ourselves!!) as I put it in the wheelbarrow with all the other roots. She was checking it out when she suddenly dropped it in alarm.

This thing had been exposed and wriggled at her!!

I don’t know what this grub is, but considering it was burrowing in the rose roots, I’d say it’s not a beneficial creature to have in the garden. :-/

This is where we stopped for a longer break. Sustenance was needed!

There are enough larger rocks to line the wall. My daughter used some to make a little wall around the power cables that run under the old kitchen. We also found a cable running along the wall to the corner, which is going to be carefully covered with rocks.

There are two more of those blocks in the wagon. They will be spaced out from one end to the other, and the gaps filled with soil and rocks.

As for the poppies, they will now be planted on the other side of the path!

Meanwhile, as I’ve been working on this post, the girls have gone back outside and are planting the Strawberry Spinach. 🙂

The Re-Farmer

Changes of plans

First, I wanted to share with you a photo of some visitors out our living room window last night.

There were actually five in total, but they were chasing each other around. The mama of the two in front chased the one you can see behind the cross, who chased another deer out of that spot before I got the picture. The fifth one that I saw making its way long the edge of the spruce grove disappeared before reaching the feeding station, and I missed what happened with that one.

The deer are definitely getting feistier as the weather warms!

It’s not quite warm enough, though!

I hadn’t received a call about the garden soil over the weekend, so I called them back this morning. The woman who answered seemed at a bit of a loss with how to help me, and ended up giving me the cell phone number for a particular person (since I want someone to come here in advance to see where the loads will be dumped), but there was no point in trying to call them until after 7pm, because they were in a cell phone dead zone. It ended up not being necessary. She called me back not long after.

Their pile of garden soil is too frozen.

She suggested I call back in about a month. Hopefully, it’ll be thawed enough for the equipment to be able load the truck! It would have been nice to get the soil well before we actually need it, but as long as we get it before we need to actually start planting, it should be fine.

I also called the garage to follow up on the van, and we’re now booked to bring it back tomorrow morning, so he can clean out that new EGR valve.

My husband got a requisition for blood work some time ago, but between the polar vortex, van issues (my mother’s little car is far too painful for him to ride in, and his walker wouldn’t fit in it, even folded up, anyhow) and pain levels, we just never made it in. I called the clinic to make sure the form was still at the reception, and that was confirmed. We had planned to go in today to get that done, but my husband’s pain levels were too high. We’ll try again on Wednesday.

On the positive side, my husband’s tax return came in. We had plans for part of it that I tried to take care of last night, only to discover we couldn’t use our debit Visa.

With no trip to the clinic today, I was open for making a trip to the city.

This is what we picked up.

Yup. We got a crossbow kit.

More specifically, we got a Killer Instinct Boss 405.

It’s an early 33rd anniversary gift. 😀

Now, what we really wanted to get was a rifle, but we have not been able to get our PALs yet, and with certain political activities going on right now, we were seeing our window of opportunity closing fast. However, having a gun on the farm is needed, if only to ward off the coyotes and other predators. Plus, I want to be able to hunt.

My husband and I both know guns (me from growing up on the farm, him from his time in the military), and bows. I used to shoot recurve, and my husband shot compound. We were both rather good at both guns and bows, too. However, with age and injuries, anything with a draw weight suitable for hunting is getting beyond our levels of mobility.

We decided that a crossbow would best meet our needs, while still being something we can actually get. Plus, the archery hunting season is much longer than rifle hunting season. As a bonus, a crossbow is quiet. I like quiet!

With that in mind, we did our research and decided on a crossbow at Cabela’s. It’s not high end, by any means, but it’s hardly bottom of the barrel, either. It will meet our needs.

Then, since I had to drive well over an hour to get to the store, I took advantage of the situation, asked questions, and picked up a few other things. (Happily, they accept medical mask exemptions, too!)

One of the things I’d tried to buy on the website was a crossbow rated target. I called ahead, and the crossbow and target were both waiting for me when I got there. After seeing it in person, I decided to get a larger target. I didn’t take pictures, but I ended up getting a Morrell Yellow Jacket YJ-425.

I also got these.

The crossbow kit comes with 3 bolts with field points. Bolts will get lost or damaged, so I picked up a 6 pack of extras. The spares do not come with points, so I picked up a 12 pack of field points. They are slightly heavier than the ones in the kit, so we won’t be using the kit points at all. I also picked up hunting points that need to be assembled, but they are the same weight as the field points. I also got a de-cocking bolt, which can be safely shot into the ground.

After taking this picture, I had to hide everything in a closet, because the cats were ALL OVER everything.

Susan tried to chew on the fletching of the de-cocking bolt.

Tomorrow, the bow will be assembled, but I don’t know when we’ll be able to test it out and start practicing. Not only is it very wet and messy right now, but we’ve got rain in the forecast tomorrow, and snow in the forecast a couple of days later!

And for those who are wondering, no, we don’t plan to hunt the deer that come to our yard.

Over the next while, I’ll be searching out local crossbow groups and hopefully be able to find a hunting mentor. I will still need to take the hunter’s safety course to get a hunting license, and while it would be nice to have a freezer full of venison next winter, I don’t expect to be ready to hunt this year. While all of us can practice shooting with this, it is likely that I will be the only one that will take the course and get a license to hunt.

At least, that’s the plan for now. Plans have a terrible habit of changing at the last minute, but it’s a goal we are shooting for.

No pun intended.

The Re-Farmer

2020 Goals: Review and Reset

Well, here we are, at the end of 2020. This is our 3rd full year, and 4th winter, of living on the farm.

We set up goals to accomplish the task of getting this place cleaned up and fixed up. Of course, goals are always flexible, since life has a way of blowing right through any plans we might make! So it’s good to take a look and see where we stand.

Of course, the first priority was getting the house itself settled. While we did get most of my parents’ belongings stored away, with some of it staying to be used, there are still things that need to get done. They are not a priority, though, so they can wait. I don’t think anyone wants to go into the attic over the old kitchen to clean that up, for example! Some day, we will have to, but it will wait.

After getting a good look (or so we thought!) of what needed to be done outside, we set yearly goals. The first two years were to be focused on cleaning up the inner yard, then moving on to the outer yard in the third year, before finally moving beyond the outer yard, where we could start looking at clearing out the vehicle graveyard and large junk piles.

In the first year, focus was on clearing out the maple grove and the south and west yards, while year two was supposed to focus on clearing out the spruce grove and east yard. The old garden area in the north was basically in limbo until we decided on what we wanted to do for gardening. The big accomplishment there was getting a new push mower that allowed us to actually mow the overgrown old garden that had been badly plowed some time before we moved out here.

Year one went to plan, but year two had other plans for us, as my husband ended up in the hospital for 3 weeks, followed by trips to the city for medical care, and other such things. The weather also did not cooperate, with drought conditions and heat making heavy physical labour outdoors potentially dangerous. So that whole area got pushed back another year, except for one thing. I managed to clear out the old wood pile, uncovering the only good and soft soil in the entire inner yard! We also set aside an area where my mother’s garden used to be for future gardening, covering it with mulch, then using the giant black tarps reclaimed from the old wood pile to cover most to the area over the winter.

Between those two accomplishments, we ended up planting an actual garden this past summer. This was not something we expected to be able to do for some time, but really, if we waited until conditions were just right, nothing would ever get done, so we went for it. In that respect, this past year had us ahead of the game a bit.

Another plan we had for this past year got pretty much zero progress. We wanted to build a cordwood shed to use as an outdoor bathroom. Having what we thought was the septic tank backing up into the basement, and having to use a honey pot until that got cleared up, showed us that we don’t just need a second bathroom. We need a bathroom that does not rely on our septic system. The old outhouse we’ve got here has a growing hole to the pit developing under the door, and we don’t consider it safe to use. We want to move away from having a pit and use a composting toilet, instead. Sure, it means having to empty the contents regularly, but in the long term, it means the shed could someday be used as something else, just by removing the toilet box.

At the very least, I hoped to get an area dug out so we could create a level “foundation” to build on top of, that would allow for drainage while also holding the weight of cordwood and mortar walls.

This past year, we had a wet spring followed by some pretty extreme heat (well… for our area), and the only thing we managed to accomplish to that goal was clear away the last of the little trees that had sprung up by the old wood pile. I think not getting any progress on that is my one real disappointment for the year’s plans gone awry.

At the same time, even with the setbacks of the previous years, there were things that needed to get done in the outer yard. Thanks to my brother, gaping holes in the roof of one the sheds were patched with pieces of metal roofing left over from when the barn and garage were done, years ago. Windows were replaced or fixed. Some trees cleared away from other roofs. These were things that were part of the original plans, so in that respect, they were being done on schedule. The other things that need to be done in the outer yard will be slowly accomplished over the space of years, but some things were just more urgent than others.

The summer heat made working in the spruce grove severely limited. Plus, while we were glad to have an actual garden this past year, tending them did take time away from the goal of clearing out that grove. It is a fire hazard, which increases with every tree that comes down in a storm, or any branches that fall. Plus, we want to take down the dead trees and plant more spruces in the spruce grove!

So that area has been pushed back for yet another year.

Which brings me to our updated plans and goals.

For 2021, we’ll be focusing even more on gardening, having picked up a ridiculous number of seeds, with more things to arrive in the spring, when they can be planted right away. This is going to rather force us to get the spruce grove cleared up faster! Areas of the spruce grove are being taken over by poplars, and these will be perfect to use to build trellises and arbors for the garden. We even plan to build a gate/arbor combination to set up next to the main gate, so people can come in without climbing the locked gate. The taller poplars would probably be useful in building temporary, deer proof fencing to protect our garden, too.

There’s at least one large dead spruce I want to take down. Not starting on the cordwood shed may actually be a plus, since I would be cutting it to (hopefully!) fall in that direction, where there are no other trees for it to fall on top of. With the old chainsaw we have breaking at one of the switches needed to start it, the very first time I tried to use it, we will need to invest in a new one to get the spruce grove cleaned up. There’s only so much that’s reasonable to do with a buck saw! Plus, we have a mulberry tree coming in the spring. It’s a zone 4 tree, so we want to ensure it is growing in a protected area that also gives full sun, and that’s going to be in the spruce grove.

With having varieties of corn and sunflowers that need to be kept away from each other to avoid cross pollination, we’ll be working in areas of the old garden that are well away from the house. All of that will be temporary as, in the long term, we are looking to plant nut trees in there, and move most of the gardening into the outer yard, south of the house. So any gardening we do around there in the upcoming year will mean breaking up the hard, rocky soil and amending it, which will make it better for any future nut trees we plant out there.

One of the goals we had for this past year was to hire the tree company to come out with their massive chipper, and get rid of the piles of wood we’ve got all over. We couldn’t do it this year, but it still needs to be done. It may be worthwhile for us to just buy a chipper instead, though the cost of one that can handle what we’d be putting it through would be considerably more than the cost of hiring this company to come out for 6 hours. From the estimate I got at the time, he figured 6 hours would be enough time for them to do all the piles, too. Hiring someone would be more efficient to get these big piles done. We can invest in a chipper of our own, later on. We will always have branches to clean up and get rid of, so it would be worth it.

So the past year has been an odd mix of goals delayed, while others were accomplished faster than expected. One thing that has been delayed for way too long is getting the junk pile hauled to the dump. This is something we will be hiring people to do, so it basically comes down to whether or not it’s in the budget at any given time. So far, it hasn’t been! It would be fantastic to get rid of that unsightly mess, though.

Aside from time and weather dependent things that will need to get done, like all things garden related, our goals and plans for 2021 have become a lot more loosey-goosey. Timelines have become much more vague, and we’re still at a loss on how to accomplish some vital goals, like replacing the roof.

Still, we’ve managed to accomplish enough in the past year, that we can spend more time building things up, rather than taking things down, in the next year.

Which is as good for the psyche as for anything else!

The Re-Farmer

Clean up: reclaiming the old kitchen

The girls took care of a huge job for me, in emptying out the old kitchen!

Well. As much as it will be.

Here is how it looks now, while we take a break and get out of the heat.

When we first moved here, my younger brother had his larger freezer where the one in the photo now sits. They moved it out shortly after we moved in, freeing up some space for us.

There was a shelf in the corner, filled with a variety of things hidden behind a curtain. My mother had a thing for putting curtain rods on shelves, then hanging light and lacy curtains to hide the contents. I don’t think she understood that she was damaging the shelves in the process. Mind you, with most of the shelves, it really didn’t make much difference.

This corner is where our current freezer, which had belonged to my parents, used to sit. When I was a kid and we were still using this kitchen, there was a fridge in this corner.

I have zero memory of there being a fridge in this kitchen!

When I started cleaning up the old kitchen before, I had put a utility shelf in this corner. In no time at all, things ended up dumped in front of it, because we had no place else to put them, and it became completely inaccessible!

That corner is where we will be putting the plastic couch from the sun room.

After taking this picture, I took down the curtain over the window that doesn’t have aluminum foil on it. It has a screen, so I tried opening it to get some air circulation, but it would only open half an inch. Ah, well. Better than nothing!

The window with the foil over it is supposed to get replaced. The replacement window is actually leaning against a wall, between the doors to the house and to the sun room.

We are not going to be replacing the window just yet, but I will keep that in mind as we set things up again.

Ah, the old wood stove! This is what my mother cooked on, until the addition was added to the house and we got an electric stove, to go with having running water and an indoor bathroom.

The hinges on the door are broken, as if someone tried to stand on it while open.

There are still ashes in there!!

Eventually, I want to clean it up and pick up some stove blacking – I even found some in one of our local hardware stores.

It’s amazing that this stove was going almost all day, every day, and the kitchen never caught fire. There is NOTHING protecting the walls and floor.

We will not be doing anything to what’s on the shelves in that little nook just yet.

Of course, there were all sorts of things the girls cleared out. The dresser in the photo being one of two larger items, plus lots of things like this sifter screen. It was used to clean the chaff and dirt out of seeds. It’s old and the wood is rotting, but it’s being kept. It’s very likely my dad made it himself. The screen is ordinary metal window screen. The wooden frame was very likely salvaged from a peach basket or something like that.

As the girls took things out, I started hauling some of the stuff either to the junk pile, or into the storage house, which is where that sifter went. I hate that we’re adding things into there. We’ve made no attempt to start cleaning it out. When we do, we’ll definitely need to use masks and gloves. If I can find some coveralls that would fit us, that would be good, too.

Among the things I took in were a large and a small shop vac. When my daughters started talking about using a shop vac on the floors, one of them wondered if the large shop vac worked. I had taken a look at it while carrying it over, I thought that, while it might run, it probably doesn’t vacuum anymore. The little one was

(Aaaannnd… that’s it. I’m done for the day.

As I was writing the above, the phone rang. My sister had taken my mother to the cemetery, and accidentally locked her keys in the car. Long story short, it turns out her car has a combination touch screen she’d forgotten about, but since they were in the area, my mother wanted to see the yard. I am now completely drained. We’ll finish the job tomorrow.)

Where was I?

Ah, yes. The little shop vac. It was wrapped up in a plastic bag, so my daughter didn’t realize what it was. The old kitchen had (and still has) lots of jars that we put into the wagon, so before my daughter had to go back to work, we brought the wagon to the storage house and assembly lined passing them all up the stairs and stacking them in a space I’d prepared for them. Then I brought the little shop vac to the sun room to plug it in and test it out.

It works! So we have a little shop vac – small enough to fit into a grocery bag! – to help clean up the floors. This will be a huge help in the old kitchen, with it’s bits and pieces flooring.

After doing the glass, we stopped to take a break, and I started on this post. Then I got the call from my sister. It turns out she’d tried to call several other people first, including her husband who has spare keys, before being able to reach me. The concern was, there is no shade at all in the cemetery, and it was way too hot for my mother to be in the sun.

So I headed out to go get them, thinking to bring them here to wait for my brother in law – or I could take my mother straight home.

It turned out to be a moot point. I got to the cemetery, and there was no car! Clearly, they’d gotten it open.

Then I saw a car I’d passed on the way over, coming back up the road. I haven’t seen my sister’s newer car in a while, so I hadn’t recognized it. I learned she’d gone to the house closest to the cemetery (which is off the main road and cut into the bush) to make the calls, since her cell phone was locked in the car along with her keys. After reaching me, she got through to her husband, who told her to just use the combination. She’d forgotten there was one! Along the frame of the driver’s side window is basically a touch screen of numbers. She didn’t remember the combination, but her husband did, so they were able to get in. I guess they were on the way to the farm when they saw me going by and turned around.

Since they were there, my mother wanted to come see the yard. She insisted, she didn’t want to come into the house (stairs are difficult for her). I had already told them we had emptied the sun room and old kitchen, and everything was spread out in the yard. They were okay with that, so I sent a message to my family to let them know the situation, and off we went.

What does it say that I get better cell phone reception at a cemetery in the bushes than we do here at the farm? 😀

Once we arrived, my sister parked in the shade of the yard. I asked her if my mom had brought her walker, and she hadn’t, so I went and got my father’s walker. We keep it handy for times like this (and in case I ever need it!). My sister and I also moved the plastic couch into the shade of my mother’s white lilacs, for later.

We then did a tour around the yard, and it was about what I expected. My mother had no real interest in the progress made, and all the interest in the things she didn’t like. Oh, I’d pulled up the spirea over there! Yes, Mom. It was spreading and killing things off. I want the lilacs, not the spirea.

Which is when she told me she had also tried to keep up with pulling them out of that spot, too.

And why did I want those piles of sticks all over the place?

I don’t want them there, but we have to put the branches somewhere. They will be cleaned up in time.

We went around to the old stone cross my late brother had salvaged off a building he’d demolished, which was another area I’d pulled up spirea. I’d been given a hard time about that, too, but now the area is filled with wildflowers. My mother had already graciously given me permission to pull up the spirea in that area. There is one patch of spirea by the storage house that we are keeping. The butterflies and other insects just love them, and it’s a place where we can keep it under better control. My mother was, at least, happy to see how well the grapes are doing (no comments on their no longer being buried in spirea and now on a trellis, though), only to launch into how I need to water them. I really have to water them, because they’re under a roof (meaning, the eaves of the storage house), and they’ll do really well if I just water them.

Yes, Mom, I know how to water plants.

She didn’t know what to make of the cucamelons.

Then we started walking towards the old garden area, and she could see the sunflowers at the far end.

What are those sunflowers doing there? Did you plant them?

Yes, Mom. We’ve been talking about that a few times, now.

What are those over there? Are they squash?

Yes, those are squash.

*long pause*

Oh, there used to be such a beautiful garden here! It used to be so beautiful!

*sigh*

She couldn’t, of course, go into the garden, because it is so rough. My sister and I went down to the end of the apple trees, and she had a few things to say about the horrible plow job. The summer before we moved here, she and her husband were the ones trying to cut the lawn in the area. The problem is that, instead of plowing in straight rows in the same direction, so the furrow overlap each other, my younger brother had gone in circles, instead. That left the mounds the were are now struggling with. We’re not sure why he did it this way, but my sister suspects alcohol was involved! 😀

Since I’d mowed a path, my mother was able to go through the maple grove with her walker, all the way to the old willow tree that we’d lost a big chunk of in a blizzard last fall. My sister remembers that tree being huge, even when visiting at the farm before my parents bought it. Then we went over to the fire pit, and I told my sister about how I found the bricks around it. She was amazed, partly because she remembered those bricks being there, and didn’t realize they’d been completely covered.

I tried to talk to my mother about some of the plans we had, but she wasn’t interested. Instead, she wanted to go to the storage warehouse, where almost all the things my parents left behind are now packed away in. I managed to convince her to first stop for a rest in the shade. After a nice rest and hydration, we made out way over.

She actually insisted in going inside, struggling up the few stairs to get in. The building is jam packed, with only a couple of narrow areas to walk in, but she squeezed her way through. Some of the cardboard boxes have started to collapse under the weight of their contents, and I found some things that could not be boxed where knocked onto the floor, including a little mirrored altar of my mothers. The original crucifix was long gone, and another had been put in it’s place. We found that on the floor. My mother decided to take it with her. It turned out to be the first gift she and my dad received, when they got married! Then she started pulling out the large framed pieces, eventually digging out a print of Mona Lisa.

She ended up taking that with her, even though she had nowhere to hang it!

Then she started digging at the end of the path, trying to reach something. There was a bunch of curtain rods from when we cleaned out the sun room, originally. I convinced her to let me get them for her, but when I asked which she was after, she’d completely ignored me. So I grabbed several and held them for her while she picked a couple of the least damaged ones.

My sister and I eventually persuaded her to stop trying to rearrange things and start heading out.

Then she decided she wanted to go into the storage house.

!!!

My sister immediately pointed out how difficult it would be for her to get up those stairs. I had to plead with her, not to go in. I reminded her of her breathing problems, telling her I’d been in and out of there several times, and my own lungs were starting to burn from it (as I type this, I can still feel my throat burning from talking so much, after being in there). I promptly got told that I needed to leave the doors and windows open to get the smell out. I told her it needed a major cleaning, plus there are no screens on the windows, and I didn’t want anything to get in and get trapped (my sister says that’s probably how the dead squirrel that is now a skeleton on the kitchen floor got trapped in there). She still insisted I should leave the door open and open windows.

What was it she was after in there? Maybe I could get it?

It turns out she was worried about a pair of brass candlesticks, and whether they were still there. They are actually a pair of menorahs, and I assured her, they were still on the shelf, covered with a light curtain. Oh? I didn’t cover them! was her response. Well, someone did. They’re still there.

In the end, my sister and I ended up going into the storage house, and we each grabbed a candlestick, took them to the door and showed them to her.

As we put them back, my sister and I were talking for a bit, but I just couldn’t stay in there any longer. My lungs were burning. Even my sister was already noticing it affecting her, so we headed out. I got more lectures on how I needed to leave the door open, and how I need to clean things. Eventually, my sister pointed out that I had stopped cleaning things, and they should probably leave so I could get back to it.

Which they did, but by then, I was done. That hour or so with my mother drained more energy out of me than two days of working on the sun room and old kitchen. I would so love to have a better relationship with her, but she just can’t seem to find anything good to say, without undermining it with by making sure I know what a bad job I’m doing, or how wrong what I’m doing it, etc. I’ve reached a point in my life where she can no longer hurt me, but my goodness, it just sucks the energy right out of me! She couldn’t even resist making a snarky comment about the sweatpants I was wearing; the ones I wear when I know I’m going to be doing dirty manual labour, that used to be my husband’s. They have elastic around the ankles, to help keep the wood ticks out. No recognition at all that I dropped everything to go and get them when they were stuck at the cemetery, and that’s why I was still in my grubbies.

But I did get a lecture about how she won’t be around forever, and after she’s gone, we’ll remember and miss her.

*sigh*

I wouldn’t be surprised if my mother lived to be 100. For all her complaining, she’s got an amazing constitution. Even when she had abdominal surgery and they kept her in the hospital for a week, she recovered faster than when I had a much less invasive day surgery! I was about to say she could get hit by a truck and survive, but… she’s already done that.

So I’m done. Wiped out. Exhausted. Not physically, but mentally.

My daughter headed out to secure some of the stuff so they won’t blow away. I’m going to go do the watering with fertilizer I’d planned on doing, once things cooled down a bit.

I’ll at least be able to say I finished one thing, today, after that!

The Re-Farmer

New baby sighting, and washer update

While doing my rounds, before going to the city, I went to the usual spots to see if any more branches had come down during the night.

None had, but when I reached the fence near the pump shack, I heard something moving on the metal table beside it.

It took me a while, but I eventually saw a kitten slink under the table itself.

Was that Junk Pile cat’s white and grey baby?

Near where I was standing is a spot the cats use to go under the chain link fence. Rosencrantz, whom I’d seen earlier as I put kibble out for the yard cats, went through, stopping several times to look back at me and give me a death glare! 😀

Just look at that face!

So was that Rosencrantz’s baby I was seeing?

She made her way to the pump shack, then settled down in front of the door, keeping an eye on me. I could no longer see the kitten under the table, but then and orange head popped out of the hole at the bottom of the door!

I’d actually enlarged that hole last year, when Pump Shack kitten was living in there. (We haven’t seen Pump Shack cat, nor her mom, Guildenstern, in a very long time.)

It took a while, but the other kitten did eventually come around.

Of course, there’s that little sapling in the way! 😀

This is most definitely NOT the grey and white kitten I saw before. This one has more white, and also has patches of orange in it.

So this is a first time sighting of these babies!

These would be the younger siblings to Keith, David and Junk Pile cat.

Shortly after this, my older daughter and I headed for the city. Having gone looking around online last night, I had several possibilities for washing machines that I wanted to check out at Home Depot.

Once at the store, I went looking at the machines. I wasn’t too surprised that there were fewer than what I saw online. Aside from the prices, I had also looked at ratings. GE had some of the lowest ratings, while Whirlpool had the highest. Those were out of budget, though. Plus, I wasn’t seeing any on display.

I had an employee acknowledge me when I first got there, asking if I needed help right away. I didn’t, yet, which worked out for him, since he said he needed to go to the back for a while. This gave me lots of time to look at the machines before settling on this one.

It was a GE, but not the same model I was seeing on the website that had the lower ratings. In fact, I don’t recall seeing this model online at all. The price was also easier on the budget than others on display. There were several cheaper ones but… they were also TOO cheap! And I don’t mean just on price.

There was also the issue of size, which turned out to be more of a non-issue. Where we have the washer and dryer is already tight. My daughter at home measured the width and messaged me the info. Our machine at home was 26 7/8ths wide. We could go up to 27 inches, but that was it. The machines were all either 26 7/8ths inches wide, or 27 inches wide. This one was 27 inches wide.

I then waited for the guy to come back.

And waited.

After a while, I asked a nearby cashier if she could see if someone was available, on the possibility there was someone else in that section.

There wasn’t.

So I waited some more, wandering around a bit.

Which is when I discovered there was a whole other section of washers and dryers I’d somehow managed to not see.

Of course, that’s when the guy came back.

I told him I was looking for a washing machine, mentioned that I’d just noticed the other section. After a quick walk around, I showed him the one I said I’d decided on.

“No,” he said.

I could only laugh. He did explain, though.

Basically, the brand sucks. He’d never use one himself, and wouldn’t sell one, if he could avoid it. His recommendation was to go with either Whirlpool or LG. I’d seen both brands were highly rated, but I hadn’t looked at any LG models online.

The first one he took me over to was a Whirlpool. It was over budget but, more importantly, it was 27 1/2 inches wide. That half inch would make a difference.

He showed me a couple others he recommended, both LG, that were 27 inches. The closer one we came to, I told him straight up was out of budget, so he showed me another one.

After going back and forth, I went with the cheaper LG.

This is it.

It cost $100 more than the GE, but it was still within budget. Well. Almost. After taxes and whatever fees were added on, it ended up costing $835 and change. So $35 over budget. It is also a higher capacity machine, at 5.5 cubic feet instead of 4.9 cubit feet in the GE I was looking at.

Unfortunately, they do not keep an inventory of stuff like this. It has to be delivered from the national warehouse in Ontario.

Expected delivery to the store: Friday, the 24th.

That’s more than a week away.

Now, I could have decided not to buy it, then tried going elsewhere, but that would most likely have meant going to another city, at a competitor’s location where we got our replacement hot water tank. That store has higher prices for the same makes and models, though, so even if I were able to find an identical machine, I probably could not have bought it.

So I bought the machine. If we really, really have to, we can go to town and use the laundromat.

As he did the computer stuff, and put me into their system, we had time to chat. I told him about our washer dying yesterday, and how we had to decide if it was worth fixing. I told him about finding the plastic part under it, and he cringed. I mentioned the screws, and he cringed a bit more. Then I mentioned the puddle of oil, and he did a whole body twitch while in the middle of typing. 😀

After the transaction was done, he made sure to let me know to expect a call on Thursday, the 23rd. If there was no call, he said to call him early on Friday (I made sure to take down his name). The delivery trucks stop running at 4:30. Once they stop, there would be no chance of it arriving until Monday, so it would have to be early enough for him to make some calls about it.

The new washer will be delivered to the store. We’re too far away to have it delivered to our place. Which actually helped a bit, since it kept the price down. There would have been a delivery fee on top of everything else, but he was able to waive that.

So we’ve got more than a week without a washing machine.

And I needed to do laundry, yesterday.

While we could make the trip into town to use the laundromat, we’re not going to bother. At least, not yet. My daughters have already done a load of their own laundry in the bath tub, and I’m about to do the same.

The one good thing about the new washing machine not coming in right away is, we have time to haul the old one out and clean up the mess of oil under it.

By the time we got home, I was surprised it wasn’t even 2pm yet. If felt like it should have been more like 4 or 5!

This has been a very expensive month. I had to buy the push mower. Then I had to buy the parts and pieces to fix the sink. My daughter bought the new stove, and now we’ve bought a new washing machine. Meanwhile, we’ve got the riding mower still in the shop (at this point, I’m hoping they’ll continue to take their time getting to it!), plus my mother’s car will be ready for the end of the month. That one, at least, I’ve got almost 2/3rds paid off. My older daughter is still getting regular commissions, but my younger daughter is not going to be able to find a job for some time, given the pandemic situation, and our Premiere extending our “emergency” status for a couple more months, in spite of the lack of cases in our province. So it’s not like there’s any way for the income to increase with the outgo!

Unfortunately, it means a lot of things we’d hoped to get done this summer, likely won’t happen. We need to buy plywood for a floor on the trailer, and more for other projects we had in mind. I was hoping to buy materials to create a base for the cordwood outhouse we were planning to build this summer. While there is a lot we can get started on to prepare that won’t cost money, we do still need to buy some things, like mortar ingredients, and I was hoping to have concrete paving stones as a “floor” to build on. That project will likely have to be pushed back to next year. Plus, if anything else breaks down, there’s very little left in reserve. I’m just thankful we had as much as we did, set aside, to cover these. I just can’t help but think, how on earth are we supposed to come up with $10,000 for a new roof, when stuff like this keeps happening?

But, thanks to my husband’s private insurance and disability income, the bills are being paid, there’s food on the table, and gas in the tank. Being hear at the farm, we’ve got a roof over our head (even if it needs replacing!) and are secure as “caretakers” of the property. We are much better off than so many others, and have much to be thankful for.

Well, there’s one thing that might help, on the financial side. Our internet provider has had a new tower built in the area.

When moving here, the only option we had was satellite and, because of plan limits at the time, we had to get two of them to provide enough data for our needs. (Getting internet is a necessity, since my daughter’s business is entirely online now.) Even then, we had issues. Eventually, we were able to double the data one of the plans. Meanwhile, we lose connectivity fairly easily. Particularly in summer, when the foliage is full. The primary account’s satellite is usually fine, but the secondary satellite is barely a couple of feet to the side, and the branches block the signal more frequently (I’ve lost internet several times, just writing this post!). As we reach the limit on the data plan for our primary account, we switch cables on our router to the secondary account – and we switched cables just this morning. We have been regularly going over our data plans, and while the company waived those costs for the past couple of months, due to the lock downs and more people being stuck at home, that ended this month.

My husband talked to the company and will arrange for someone to come by next month to do a site survey (when we’ll have money to pay for the survey). If they can get a signal to the new tower, we would be able to move away from satellite completely, have only one account, unlimited data, and save almost $200 a month.

Yeah. We spend over $300 a month, just to get internet out here, with limited data and frequent loss of connectivity.

I’m really hoping they find a signal this time!

The Re-Farmer