Random Notes in Early December…

Down on the Farm
Winter chores have begun, so we are a lot busier than we were a month ago but not as busy as we will be when the heifers all have to be brought in. The older heifers are all still living outdoors full-time, but that will soon change as well. The milk cow herd goes out for exercise and to eat balage for 3 hours or so, just long enough for them to enjoy it. When the ground is cold and wet and muddy they don’t like to lie down (and I don’t want them to lie down in the mud!) They spend the rest of their time in well bedded, extra comfy tiestalls where they are cared for like royalty. We finally have the pipeline project finished. The whole milking cow barn now has pipeline over it. Elder Don Smith came out and helped Dad and I get the Stainless pitched properly, he brought a transit which made it easier to get the right slope (1 inch to 10 ft). He also had the tool to put ferrules on the end of the pipe so we could custom cut some used pipeline to fit the stalls. Yesterday I finished putting the sch80 2 inch PVC line up for the pulsators. All the stall cock holes are drilled and tapped and the stall cocks are installed. Now I need to start work on finishing up the water line and drinking cups for the rest of these stalls and then they are ready for milks cows.

Garden on my mind
With such a crapy gardening year I’m already looking with hope to next year. Can’t be any worse! We have our new garden spot all plowed up so we will be ready for spring. This part of the St Lawrence river valley is clay soil, the dark black kind. Clay will grow awesome crops but you need to plow it in the fall and let freeze out or you can’t work it in the spring. Seed catalogs have started to show up, the word I’m hearing is that you should try to order early again this year (short supply).

Wendell Berry on needing “a job”

From an article in The Progressive.

Of course people need to work. Everybody does. And in a money-using economy, people need to earn money by their work. Even so, to speak of “a job” as if it were the only economic need a person has, as if it doesn’t matter what the job is or where a person must go in order to have it, is brutally reductive. To speak so is to leave out virtually everything that is humanly important: family and community ties, connection to a home place, the questions of vocation and good work. If you have “a job,” presumably, you won’t mind being a stranger among strangers in a strange place, doing work that is demeaning or unethical or work for which you are unsuited by talent or calling.

Economics

With the recent surge in gold and silver prices I thought you might get a kick out of this little trip down memory lane. Floyd remembers some of David Bahnsen’s really poor investment advice. Glad I stuck with the “gold in the sock drawer plan” myself.

Good Article

Chris Ortiz had a thought provoking article in the last issue of Faith for All of Life. You might enjoy reading Faith without Justice is Dead.

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