Sunday, July 1, 2012

Barnhouse - A Week On The Farm!

This post actually covers more than a week, and what a busy couple of weeks we've had!  The above picture is of Johnathon plowing for the first time with Jim and Jack.  Jordan (oldest son) taught him this morning and turned him loose preparing a new garden spot.  The dirt is REALLY dry because of the lack of rain here.  It has also been unseasonable warm  this week, and we're praying for some rain and safety for those working outside in the many areas  experiencing high temperatures  and drought.
Little Man found his cowboy attire and got all dressed up for the day:)
We've been canning a LOT, and we obviously let some of our zucchini get a wee bit to big.  The girls have been making zucchini and squash pickles, relish (dill and sweet), breads, and a really good zucchini salsa:)  The boys have literally been bringing produce in by the wheelbarrow load, and we are experimenting a lot.  Got any favorite recipes?

I've also been re-reading a favorite book of mine, and I love the following excerpt about the importance of home life:  "We  are fast moving on through this world.  Soon all that will remain of us will be the memories of our lives.  No part of our work will then afford such a true test of our living as the memorials we leave behind us in our homes.  No other work that God gives any of us to do is so important, so sacred, so far-reaching in its influence, so delicate and easily marred as our home-making.  This is the work of all our life that is most divine.  The carpenter works in wood, the mason works in stone, the smith works in iron, the artist works on canvas, but the home-maker works on immortal lives.  The wood or the stone or the iron or the canvas may be marred, and it will not matter greatly in fifty years; but let a tender human soul be marred in its early training, and ages hence the effects will still be seen.  Whatever else we slight, let it never be our home-making.  If we do nothing else well in this world, let us at least build well within our own doors."  --The Family,  by J.R. Miller

Some of the produce has been harvested and spread out to dry, and  Duck Duck can be seen waddling behind the onions.
This is a picture of a shed the fellas are re-building.  There was a really old and leaning  one here when we moved in.  They took it down and promised to rebuild it back the same way.  
Here it is almost completed.  One side is for storage and the other is for chickens.  There is a fenced area behind the building for chickens, but we will probably use it for those needing a place to set and hatch chicks. Hannah Joy made the cute little false door seen at the top of the building.
"Thou, O Lord, canst transform my thorn into a flower.  And I want my thorn transformed into a flower.  Job got the sunshine after the rain, but has the rain been all waste?  Job wants to know, I want to know, if the shower had nothing to do with the shining.  And Thou canst tell me-Thy cross can tell me.  Thou hast crowned Thy sorrow.  Be this my crown, O Lord.  I only triumph in Thee when I have learned the radiance of the rain."  -- George Matheson, Streams in the Desert
The  flowers planted in front of the hoop house have their pretty faces turned heavenward and are a daily reminder for us to  bask in the sunshine of our Savior's love:)
Jeremiah fell off the 4 wheeler while trying to find and apprehend our runaway pony (Billy) and had to take a week off from doing his usual chores.  Billy (pony) got away for a time, but they eventually found him a long way from home and in the woods.  We thought he had a broken bone, but thankfully Jeremiah's  ankle was only sprained .
The white flowers remind me of those some sweet friends will be using for decorations at their upcoming wedding.  They recently had a *working* and were able to get their adorable future little house dried-in in just three days!  Some of my older ones were able to participate a little and were very encouraged by how well everything was organized and how quickly jobs were completed with many hands available to labor!
They also participated in a *working* for another friend, and much was accomplished.  Friends visiting from Georgia and Alabama helped as well, and they also got lots of planting and fencing work done here.  Many hands truly do make lite work for everyone.
Happy to have Jeremiah back on his feet again and Billy (pony) back at home and behaving himself.
Lots of fun's to be had at the creek, and it's a great place to cool off on hot summer afternoons.
The children found two *boats* when we moved in and they discovered a car carrier which had been left by the former owners.  They've spent hours paddling around and also fishing from inside their little *yachts*:)
I was amazed to discover a bunch of tunnels they'd dug out on the banks of the creek.  They've been quite busy!
"Hey, what are you doing in here?"

Toby is not about to be left behind and miss the fun.  He recently had an accident and very badly hurt his leg, but he is up and chasing bugs and butterflies again in the fields.
Little Man's Duck Duck and Goose Goose are the best of friends and can be seen and heard as they travel all over the farm together. 
The meat chickens are almost big enough, and the new moveable chicken houses the boys built are working out really well.  The chickens follow the cows and do a great job of fertilizing the fields.
The pigs are growing nicely and don't cause any trouble at all.  They eat all our leftovers, old produce, and some of the milk we have left over or from making cheese.
We found a LOVELY surprise out in the field early one morning.  A Jersey heifer, and isn't she beautiful!  
Mama's staying nearby:)
 Later that afternoon, the children discovered baby twin goats had been born.
They've loaded them up and are taking them down to a separate little fenced in area.  Our first time mothers seem to have a difficult time keeping up with their babies when they are left in with all the other goats.We have LOTS to learn about goats.
Above is the little Jersey heifer mentioned earlier.  I NEVER EVER thought we'd have a baby cow in the foyer of our home, but there she is!  With the extremely high temperatures we've been having, my son noticed that she was swooning in the heat on the day after her birth.  He came walking into the house with her and announced that he thought she needed to cool off for a moment.  It was hard to refuse entry to such an adorable patient:)

They've been checking the animals at least four times per day because of the heat.  They refill their water containers often, and the younger children are spritzing the chickens with water bottles.  That really seems to help a lot, and we haven't lost any more to dehydration.
Little Man's more than happy to have her inside.
But all good things must come to an end.  Jordan hauled her back to the pasture after a couple of hours spent cooling off.  She seems to be just fine now, but we're really having to watch the animals and keep plenty of extra water nearby.
Good bye and God bless!


  1. We have followed your blog since the storm and we are so inspired and encouraged by your hard work and family unity! You truly exemplify not only the American spirit of the past, but also glorify your Heavenly Father and your earthly father. Both fathers are SO proud of you!
    Your strong work ethic has helped my children work harder on our farm. Your blog is our FAVORITE and the children are always saying "The Lee children did this and the Lee children did that!" :)
    We just had our first Jersey calf March 4th! And it has been one of the highlights of our lives! Your new calf is ADORABLE too and looks just like our Minnie Mocha!
    We have a ten acre homestead that we are working hard to develop and make the most of. I'm glad that you are settled and seem to be so productive. May the Lord bless and keep you in His care!
    -Mary Ballance
    Ballance Family Farm

  2. Wonderful post and pictures! Such a joy to see you all doing well.

  3. Hi Lee Family. It's always a joy to see what you all have been up to! We love seeing pictures from your daily life. What a blessing you all are to us.

    Much love,
    The Fitzsimmons Family

  4. Mary, Thank you so much for your sweet and VERY encouraging comment. And congratulations on the birth of your Minnie Mocha:) Your ten acre homestead sounds like a real blessing and the perfect opportunity for your children to use their skills and experience the joy and privilege of working together as a family and for God's glory. May the Lord bless your work, and thank you again for sending encouraging words our way! Blessings to you and yours:) Sherry

  5. What a wonderful post! Your children look very busy and happy. Just a word of caution about the tunnel digging. We knew of a family that lost a child when a tunnel they had dug collapsed on him. I don't know the soil there I know here in Florida it is sandy and dangerous.

    Amy Jo

  6. Wow, you're blog makes me feel SO at home. :) I live out on a little farm and we have raised horses, chickens, pigs, dogs and hunt all our meat and garden our vegetables. Your blog is a blessing. My mom has an AMAZING zucchini bread recipe with chocolate chips in it. You might be able to make chocolate chip zucchini muffins too, with a normal bread recipe. Those are my favorites. :)

  7. Mrs. Lee,
    My Mama wanted me to send you our email address ( Would you be interested in sending us yours? We have several VERY YUMMY zucchini recipes we would like to share with you. It would take up too much space on your comment section to write them all out!:) We have enjoyed and used the recipes many times with our zucchini crops. Also, if this might help, we grate our raw zucchini in our food processor, bag it, and freeze. That way, it's ready to add to soups, etc. Happy 4th!!
    Ballance Family Farm

  8. Oh that Jersey heifer really is CUTE! Just gorgeous :)
    What amazing bounty you are harvesting. Everything is so early with you, because, no doubt, of the warmth. We grow zucchini (we call it courgette over here) and as one of our daughter's favourite soups is courgette soup, most of ours is made into soup, put into tubs and used over the winter, along with our other soups .... But of course, we *do* live in a place where *warm* foods are called for more than you!
    Blessings, Anne x

  9. thank you for your hospitality( again)! We had an encouraging weekend and loved seeing yall.

    Love yall,
    the Boltons!

  10. Cool! You guys really had the most exciting and unforgettable vacation. One will never really lack things to do whenever he/she stays on a farm and a striking barn house. I bet the thought of leaving this place, and the fact that you have to go back to the urban and say hello to reality again is kind of depressing. I mean, it’s not everyday you experience amazing activities in the city, right?

    Rodger Ciliberto

    1. Rodger,

      Thank you for leaving a comment. I must have written the post in a rather confusing way. We actually live here on the farm and not in the city, and we thank God for the blessing of being here. Your definitely right..."One will never really lack things to do"...there's always plenty of work to be done on a farm. Thanks again for commenting.:)

      Blessings from the family