January 19, 2019 • 0 comment(s)
Landis built this 10 foot tall snowman, with son Cameron. How inspiring it is to have a two year old son. The two year old inspires the father to build a snowman that requires a ladder to complete. Isn't it great how one's heart responds to the eagerness of the child?
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January 11, 2019 • 0 comment(s)
Within this peaceful landscape, beavers are always at work and play. We don't interact with them much except when we graze next to our wetlands. The constant flow of water out of our wetlands attracts beavers, especially during a year like this one past, during which we received over 80 inches of rain, more than twice the average amount. Our wetlands never dried up, and the constant flow of water created ideal habitat for our busy friends.
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December 13, 2018 • 0 comment(s)
This pasture hasn't been grazed since the end of July, enjoying four months of rest and regrowth. We moved cows into this field this past Friday, after sorting through them one last time before breeding starts this Saturday coming. Tall frosted fescue is a high-protein and high-energy feed, which cows savor. Fescue can be infected with a fungus during the heat of the summer that is rather unpalatable. But once frost arrives, the fungus dies and sugar levels rise in the plant, making it highly palatable and nourishing. Abundant grass thankfully stands in this field, and it will probably supply the herd of 80 cows and calves with feed for 15 - 20 days. The power of soil to provide so much nutrition for so many animals is inspiring.
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November 29, 2018 • 0 comment(s)
This past Sunday morning, a beautiful coyote sat where this white post stands and stared at me intently. I was putting up the hot-wire and posts in the background, when a distinct presence appeared over one shoulder. I turned to experience a sensation never before felt -- a coyote calmly sitting 30 yards away with ears perched observing my every move. Once I caught my breath, I stood and watched, and she watched back, so I watched some more, and she kept doing the same.
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November 15, 2018 • 0 comment(s)
Foggy Bottom is not only a neighborhood in our nation's capital but also on our farm. The precipitation we have received this year is close to double normal amounts. This has made for frequent flooding and foggy mornings, even a snow-covered one earlier this week. Our bottom ground is susceptible to flooding, so we have to be vigilant about which animals are where during such times.
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November 2, 2018 • 0 comment(s)
Rainbows appear when we need them. In midst of cold rain, grey skies, concern over inventory, and wonder about transitions, a rainbow graced our farm this morning such as we have never before witnessed. It was a full rainbow visible from one end to the other, with a great arc and a complete, thick spectrum of colors. It was magnificent, breathtaking, and instantly inspiring. It filled the heart with vitality and a sense of purpose, thus warding off the day's woes, to enable us to continue the great and demanding journey.
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October 19, 2018 • 0 comment(s)
We are relocating stone on the farm from outdoors to indoors. It is difficult to move stone effortlessly. Here a stout hoist and the backs of numerous men move this mighty slab of sandstone into place. This slab is seven feet long, 8 inches thick, and 30 inches wide. It spent the first 400 million years of its life in the immediate neighborhood, first at the bottom of a sea and then as the face of a quarry in the nearby hillside. It spent the last 150 years as the protective cover to a cistern next to this house being renovated. It accompanied a twin slab, now situated on the hearth of a second fireplace in an adjacent room.
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October 5, 2018 • 0 comment(s)
September 28, 2018 • 0 comment(s)
Paw Paw trees fill the Appachian forest. Here cows are taking refuge from the last heat of summer within shade offered by Paw Paw trees. These prolific, slender tees bear wild fruit, which seems tropical in taste and texture - like a cross between a mango and banana. They don't grow more than ten to fifteen feet tall, but thrive in the understory of mature trees, like locusts, walnuts, and oaks.
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September 14, 2018 • 0 comment(s)
Calving has begun! This is our second calf, and was born to #806 a few days ago. #806 is one of our orginal cows, and is an Angus, as one would suspect. She was bred to a pure Red Devon bull, so the calf is half Red Devon. This is a bull calf, so he receives the same number as his dam, only with an s before the number. This bull calf will be castrated at six months of age, so the s stands for steer. Thus at a glance we know the sex and lineage of the animal. Year of birth is written at the top of the eartag, and is currently hidden by the ear. We write the same information on the back and put one tag in each ear. Periodically animals loose eartags, and we have to replace them.
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September 7, 2018 • 0 comment(s)
August 24, 2018 • 0 comment(s)
Creating an Authentic Life Requires Moving Dirt! If you are concerned you have not yet moved enough dirt for your life to cyrstallize as you would like, fear not, for we have just moved 200 truck-loads (3,000 tons) from this creek-bank to where our new driveway intersects with the state road, in quest of authentic living... And in quest of safety, so we aren't run over by unseen logging trucks!
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