Tuesday, June 23, 2009

An early pig story

I told you last about the pigs that escaped and me getting them back into the barn when we lived in Charleston, now I have another pig story from way in the beginning of our relationship together.
We were living in Feltzen South sleeping many nights on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean in a crack in a rock, read back for that story.
Chuck had done some farming before I met him with his ex father in law " Grampy Eddie" who was a pig farmer in New Brunswick.
While in Feltzen South we met an older Gent Mellie Mosher who lived at the end of our road, Mellie had a small farm as well he worked on the Riverport Docks emptying fish from the inshore boats with a very sharp fish fork, one day while working Mellie accidentally stuck the fish fork in his foot right through his rubber boot. It was a busy time for Mellie it was haying season, so we came to the rescue and we made his hay for him that year. He had also a pig to be culled and Chuck spoke up with his knowledge from Grampy Eddie and said we could help with that. Now I am a bit of a Tom Boy and spent many years of my childhood on a farm on the Eastern Shore (Marie Joseph) with many Animals but never did I ever witness let alone help with the culling of an Animal, but as the old saying goes "you gotta do whats ya gotta do" so off we went to Mellie's to help with this task. Now Mellie lived with his sister and my goodness to sit at her table for a mug up after a long day on the farm was a joy, she cooked up a storm, biscuits ,pies ,cakes you name it....I though got stuck out working with the men and this pig so we got to work, boiling water to dip the carcass to remove the hair,getting things in order.
Mellie shot the pig, Chuck being the youngest man offered to go in and drag the pig out, he started in when all of a sudden the pig got up on it's feet and went after Chuck . The pig forced Chuck up against the Pig pen ,then got it's tusk under Chucks foot and flung him up over the Pig pen fence and he landed on his back in Pig Shit!!! we carefully helped Chuck up and peeled his coveralls off, we were laughing so hard we could barley contain ourselves, Mellie looked at Chuck and said" Now Sonny how can you laugh?"Chuck's answer was, "Shit happens"
We got a huge pork roast from that pig and Chuck very much enjoyed it. His coveralls were thrown on top of an out building to get rained on and were never worn again.
We also were good friends back then with another Gent many actually but this mans name was Bill and he did a bit of inshore fishing, I played the Auto harp and so did Bill, he use to play his Auto harp with his Budgie Bird sitting on top of his head . Bill played his harp with a wooden match stick and to this day my Auto harp is still missing a string that broke from under Bills match stick.
Chuck and I were inshore fishing those days in Feltzen South and one early four AM morning we were to go out fishing , Chuck woke that morning not feeling well, so not to miss a days fishing I went out with Bill, what an interesting day that turned out to be. Bill showed me all his favorite fishing spots on the other side of Cross Island, the beauty of the ocean on a fine day out in a small but comfortable boat, the ocean water like black glass, big Cod fish to be caught and fun stories from Bill to be told. We caught a lot of fish that day and on the way back into the Feltzen South wharf I was in the back of the boat cleaning my fish with the Sea Gulls flying above and diving into the water for the fish guts ,thinking I was doing a good job of cleaning my fish when I hear bill say,"can you drive this boat ", "I said yes ,why"? he insisted I was making a mess of cleaning my fish and insisted on doing it for me, so I took the wheel and was coming in from Cross Island when I see ahead of me a Large Lobster Boat coming our way, why of course I knew to slow down and let the bigger boat go by, but Bill not knowing this came flying to the wheel afraid that I was going to try and out run this huge boat, poor Bill I often wonder over the years if he ever told the story about the day he took the young so called hippy chick out fishing. I had a great time and learned a lot from Dear old Bill, Thank you Bill.
another Feltzen story,
So we lived or I should say squatted in this old abounded house on the ocean, we had no electricity or running water ." Shogun " a six week special was to be on TV and we wanted to watch it, so we borrowed a small battery operated six inch. screen TV from a friend, it ran off a car battery which we would charge by carrying it in a milk box down the road to a friend's house in exchange for charging our battery and taking showers we would baby sit their two wonderful little girl's Angie and Vanessa .Back then our place was the favorite hangout of our many Lunenburg crazy Friend's , kind of wonder why, but I guess our friend's enjoyed the simple life during their visits where as we enjoyed their homes useing their showers and flush toilets while visiting them. Well a gang showed up one night during "Shogun " we were determined not to miss it so invited them all to join us in front of this very tiny again six inch TV,oh did I mention? no I didn't , there were twelve of our friend's there that night. So here we all were sitting around the kitchen, drinking up a storm and watching Shogun, well one of us realized how funny it must have looked because here we had fourteen pair of eyes staring at the same small screen,it is a wonder the TV didn't blowup that night, from the mass of stares.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Homesteading stories

I can honestly say , life has and is interesting and I would never even consider changing a thing.
Buying our 15 acre farm in 1985 was the beginning of some wonderful ever exciting times. Our Charleston home had been vacant for 2 years, looked at by many, but maybe the toilet in the kitchen had something to do with it not selling, yes I did say that , no walls around it, sat right against the wall beside the table, I might add the only electrical plug in that kitchen was right behind the toilet, so that is where we plugged in our toaster and hot water kettle while we sterilized the old dining room for sleeping and keeping our new born son clean and safe and out of the way while we worked at the house in preparation to move the toilet and start to try and get 50 years of wallpaper off the walls. So bad we had a burn barrel in the middle of the room which filled twice a day, to be rolled out and burnt. The old linoleum on the kitchen floor was so thick in the middle from years of new being put over old , made for insulation from drafts coming up from the old rock walled cellar. The toilet got moved upstairs just before Chuck left again for work up North in the Spring of 1985, leaving myself and the baby(Clay) to try and take care of the little jobs until he returned in 9 weeks. Well now that was fun, the rain started that Spring which made drying painted floors a chore. Clay and I moved in with Aunt Janie and Uncle Ken for a few weeks while things dried ,which was like a vacation at the Beach for awhile. Chuck returned after 9 weeks to a Baby who was growing in leaps and bonds and that is when we both decided that making money was not the important thing, that watching our son and ourselves grow with Love and Family was first on the list. So no longer did he go away and our Little hobby Farm began.
The old Cape Cod was starting to come together, we hooked up our old Lunenburg Foundry Peacock Kitchen wood Stove and the smells of homemade bread began to absorb into the walls of our home to remain there to this day. We then got Goats, Pippy being our first ,Pippy was an Alpine Goat and some what of a spoiled Diva who would climb our wood pile and look in the kitchen window.Then came Anna a Nubian Goat, I had never in my years even seen a dog or cat being born and when Clay was almost two years old, Chuck was at work this one day, he was a Correctional Officer in Liverpool then, Anna the Goat was to give birth and I was ready with my birthing book and basket with all I needed to assist her so I thought, I popped out to the barn that morning to check on her and what do I see ? two hooves which would come out then in, well you should have seen me run for my birthing basket and Baby and that is where Clay and I spent the day in the barn eating our lunch while waiting for the birth, finally here comes a Kid...how exciting and then here comes another , three in all and she didn't need my help what so ever, thank God because Chuck who has been around many big animals giving birth had instructed me on putting my arm where the sun doesn't shine to help the baby out, thank you Anna for doing it all yourself. So much fun as these kid's grew, Clay and I would walk Anna up our quiet dirt road while the Kids would romp and play behind their Mom as we walked along. We miked our Goats to the delight of our Foster Son Collin who was allergic to Cows milk, and we made Goat cheese .Those were the days. One Christmas Chuck bought me the biggest Christmas present ever, a milk Cow "Kate" we went to see and meet Kate one evening on our way to a movie in Bridgewater, we were dressed in our town cloths and after visiting Kate and spending some time getting to know her that evening before we moved her to our farm the following day we then headed out to our movie and were settling down to watch the flick when all of a sudden we could smell barn, yes it was us, I love that smell of a barn and always have. So Kate came home right before Christmas that year , I remember us following behind the truck she was in , it was a blustery wet snowy night and they covered her head with a blanket because her head was above the box of the truck and they didn't want her to get wet or frightened, well Kate arrived safe and sound and became a great friend and addition to our growing family for years . Kate was a lovely kind animal who would let me milk her from one side while children who were interested in learning how to milk a Cow milked her on the other side. We enjoyed her tasty milk and made butter with a homemade butter churn that Chuck built. The Foster Children who came and went over those few years then so enjoyed the experience of farm life and being with animals and learning the ways of a very simple ,healthy lifestyle. Yes we had our excitement during those years , chasing cattle through the woods when they escaped from their pasture. One day while Chuck was away at a stock auction of all things , I looked out to see my three almost grown Pigs in the middle of the road, thank God for a quiet dirt road, for there I was trying to con pigs into the barn, Chuck turned onto our road and saw ahead of him , my arms waving not to him but trying to herd pigs, pigs are stubborn. He left me watching the pigs while he went to the next farm for a portable pen in hopes of herding them into this pen, while he was gone I grabbed a coffee and stood over quietly beside the barn door waiting for his return, Long story short , the pigs being nosey heard the one pig that was still in the barn and came over to look into the barn. I stood there very still with my coffee and when the pig stepped halfway through the barn door , I slammed the door shut, I caught my first pig, then the next , so easy after the fact, then Chuck returned with the fencing to find me with a big grin and the pigs all tucked happily back in their pen. Of course I told him I got them in by simply saying to them"get back in the barn".
Now for the Little bull story, we had a Foster son come one day to stay with us, we knew right off the bat that this young man was not meant to live with us for long, he was a dear but more then we could handle with our small son beside us. His name was Timmy, well we were sitting on the deck one morning cleaning blueberries and we heard a commotion in the pasture , here was Chuck's son from his first marriage trying to convince Timmy to ride our bull "Bingo" well we flew to the pasture and arrived just in time to stop Timmy from lowering himself onto Bingo's back from the apple tree, that could have been bad, these are the kinds of things Timmy was willing to do for a bet, it was an interesting week with Timmy with us, I hope he made out OK over the years and hopefully he didn't try and ride anymore Bulls .

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Getting ready for the Season

Things have been getting busy with the arrival of good Summer resident friends and shops opening up for the Season.

Making last minute product , readying for the selling season when I find I end up doing more talking and laughing then creating, I must say I look forward to this time and try to make the best of it by always working on little projects while meeting people and saving the more involved creating for rainy days when we are all held up inside .

We finished our Pergola, made from recycled corners of a store bought cloth Pergola and our hard labor, Thank you Chuck for every night as soon as he got home from work he would work at it, as they say hard work pays off, we now can lounge in a shaded area while enjoying our wonderful garden.

I have just finished a needle felted dog commission for a friend , The felted animals ,dogs right now being my fav ,has actually taken over my life, working on the differant breeds and some heinz 57's ,enjoying the response I get from Folk's who see their favorite pet in one of them. Cats are next, I have done a couple cats and am about to do more , so much fun with the Critter's.