It is sad when gusting to 50 mph becomes almost normal. *sigh* It has here. We are now on week two or three of wind like this. I think we’ve had a couple of days where we had less wind. I can’t say no wind because I’m pretty sure those mild days were still blowing at around 10-15 mph. I have to admit the wind does wear on a person. I am so, so glad that we have the wind break we do. Who ever it was that built the house and initially had the property was sure thinking ahead. There is a strip of junipers that runs the whole length of our property along the West side where the majority of our winds come from. Now we are working on adding some trees and bushes to the East side of the property to help when the wind once in a while switches it up and comes from the other direction.
Our local Natural Resources District (NRD) has trees (saplings really) at a great price for building just such a wind break. This year they reduced the bundles down from 50 trees to 10 trees. This is good. I really didn’t want to dig 50 holes. I’ll only be digging 20 holes this year. For trees from them at any rate. It will take a while for the saplings to grow into a wind break but we have time.
It is nice to be starting on some of our long-term projects like this. Another long-term project is reviving our pasture. Right now it is mostly sage brush, rabbit brush, tumble weeds, and stickers of some sort or another. Oh, and cheat grass. Ugh. This is why we are looking at getting goats. I know they like a lot of the weeds and I need the weeds gone or at least greatly reduced. It is amazing to look out there right now and see the piles of tumbleweeds and the brown dead prairie that comes with Winter. Nothing about this weather we have here makes me want to go back in time. I can’t imagine how miserable it must have been to deal with the weather coming across the Oregon Trail. We live on the Oregon Trail and this is not a place I would have wanted to be hiding in a wagon from the weather. Wind, hail, tornadoes, rain, snow, or critters. None of that sounds like something I want to experience in a covered wagon. Those folks were tough and determined. I am glad they did it but I do not envy their situations.
Anyway, back to current day and the homestead improvements… A bit of fun news. I had been thinking I needed to ask our local bee man if he had any beeswax available and then yesterday he showed up with blocks of it at market. Yippee! I bought two. I haven’t decided just yet what my plan is for the wax. There are so many things to do with it. Salves, candles, water proofing, and on. I want to try making some candles. I need to re-vamp some Calendula salve I made for my family’s dry winter skin, and there was a wood treatment of beeswax and linseed oil that I wanted to try out. I think that would work well on some of my garden tool handles and maybe even as a rust preventative. Speaking of tools, my garden rake needs repaired. I actually found another rake head somewhere relatively recently so maybe I’ll get another handle and fix both at the same time.
If this wind would ever mellow out I’ll be moving my chickens. They need better wind protection and I need to be able to keep them in their pen for their own safety. They keep coming out of their area into the garden even when I don’t open the gate for them. This wouldn’t be so bad except that our dumb puppy has taken to chasing them. They are apparently just too much fun to chase since they squawk, flap, and run all at once. For the chickens own good they are going to have to be able to stay in their area while dogs are out most of the time. Plus, I want to be able to lock the chickens out of the garden once I have seedlings and delicious little lettuces and other greens in there.
Never ending projects around a place. Oddly that makes me happy. Another project to start soon is seed starting. Next month will be the first of them. I’m going to try celery. Also, I might try growing some radishes inside in a pot. My five-year-old wants to sell something at market at the end of February and radishes grow fast enough he may be able to do that. I keep debating where I am going to put my seeds starts this year. I have lots of nice South facing windows so I wouldn’t need any lights if I did that. But I don’t really want them taking up all the tops of book shelves either. If I put them in the basement I’ll need lights and that costs money both for the lights and to run them. I may clean the garage and start a few of the hardier plants in there with the one window that faces South.
Decisions, decisions… And on that I think I will go set a yarn sample. I’m trying to match another yarn and I won’t know until it has been set and dried.