TRUTH ACTION and sexy lingerie

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Part 2 of Habit Busting: Early to rise makes my thighs less flabby.

For the month of January, I developed a positive outlook by avoiding the main trigger of negativity in my life, procrastination, which I found to occur primarily in my comfort zone aka while lounging on the living room sofa. Therefore while I despise rules of any kind, I adopted one for my own good…NO STIITNG ON THE COUCH (until after 4:00 pm).

Having mastered the no couch zone I am ready to move onto a second challenge. For the month of February my goal is to get out of bed an hour earlier which for me will be 5am. And since there’s no couch time allowed I’ve decided to take an even bigger step…I am going to exercise for at least 30 minutes every morning.

If I succeed I am going to treat myself to a new outfit from my new favorite shop, Philanthropy.

This is a HUGE challenge for me people so any words of encouragement would be greatly appreciated.

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I’ve come to realize with my recent experiment in habit busting that the term comfort zone is very misleading. A comfort zone is anything but comfortable. It’s more like a trap, a quagmire of excuses and the perfect breeding ground for procrastination and guilt. Comfort zones create mental barriers beyond which we hesitate to go or GROW.

We use our comfort zone as a retreat from the TRUTH and ACTION of living. It is a place of unfulfilled dreams and meritocracy. Its where we wear our sweat pants instead of our sexy lingerie or what have you…

I’m calling it quits on my comfort zone. To hell with it! Here’s to TRUTH, ACTION and sexy lingerie (or whatever our hearts desire).

A Year in Goats Part I: Spring

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Oh right, I’m a FARMER…

Here’s what the heck I have to say about tending your goat herd in the springtime.

  • Deworm and trim hooves after each kidding.
  • Provide Copper supplements to lactating does.
  • Disbud and tattoo kids.
  • Rotate pastures if possible.

My year begins in March with the onset of kidding season. I chose to kid a bit later than other farmers, mainly because I don’t find bringing frozen kids into the house to warm by the fire in the least bit cute and I have learned through experience that it’s much easier to keep new moms healthy when the pasture is green. She will be able to get more of what she needs to produce milk for her kids and heal from the birthing process if she has access to leaves and brush than if she’s on a diet of hay and grain.

So the day after kidding I always give my new moms a dose of dewormer and a thorough hoof trimming. They won’t have had either treatment since just before breeding and the birthing hormones trigger a worm population increase. I will also give my does a copper bolus shortly after they kid. This is something I learned the hard way…Even if you provide free choice minerals for your herd, and I highly recommend that you do; your goats may still need some supplements, particularly copper and selenium. However, copper can be toxic when overdosed so do your homework on this one and find out of you have copper deficient soil in your area before you go crazy with it. Cows also require higher amounts of copper than other livestock so you might get some insight on the copper levels in your area by speaking to local cattle farmers. You might even find your goats perform better on minerals formulated for cattle rather than your typical goat mineral.

I disbud all kids as soon as soon as I can feel the little bumps on each side of the top of their head. I will tattoo them the following week. I will blog more about disbudding at another time.

When the kids are two weeks old I latch them up with other kids at 7pm every night. That way their mom’s will have plenty of milk for me in the morning. And so the milk season begins! Around 7am I milk my lactating does on a stand in my milk parlor. While on the milk stand, they receive their morning grain and a good brushing. I examine their eyelids for any signs of anemia, check for mastitis and trim their hooves whenever they need it.

Early spring is also when I rotate my does onto a new pasture if possible. Sometimes, I have other groups taking up all of my spare paddocks so its not possible to give one a rest over winter. It is most certainly ideal however, to move your herd from one paddock to the next to avoid parasite overload and to promote regrowth and diversity in your available browse.

Maybe next week I’ll do Part II. But then again you never can tell with me can ya?

This post is linked to Barn Hop and Works For Me Wednesdays.

Beyond the Painted Picture Puzzle Door

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One of the things I set into place to help break the negativity habit is to replace negative thoughts with positive ones. While I really fell off the wagon recently, by allowing the drama of my little sister and her baby daddy to derail these efforts, I believe it’s important to allow myself to process the past. Face the forbidden depths of my darkest moments;  let the monster within me breathe down my neck, stomp his foot and snort.Out here in the open, I can examine him. Find out where he came from, what his name is and what makes him tick.

Last week I’d forgotten this monster existed. Ignorance is bliss they say but this rediscovery is exciting. He is the Dragon of Thou Shalt and I’ve been hunting him. At some point along the way his scent mingled with the sweet perfume of goats, soap and True Love. He slipped my mind; crawled under the rug and off the grid.

The Dragon of Thou Shalt holds the keys to the Painted Picture Puzzle Door beyond which life’s limitations vanish and anything is possible. And that my friends, is where my compass is pointed. So the question for this farm girl is, how do I get those keys?

First things first…

Remember and Forgive.

Simple Black Bean Cakes w/Eggs

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This is one of my all time favorite winter meals. I hope you will give it a try!

Simple Black Bean Cakes Topped with Over Medium Eggs

This recipe makes about 12 bean cakes (6 servings).

Drain and Rinse 2 14 oz cans of black beans.

In a medium skillet sauté a handful of diced onion and two cloves of finely chopped garlic.

Mash the beans and onion/garlic mixture with a potato masher until smooth. Using a fork incorporate about ¼ cup of cornmeal. Form bean mixture into 2 inch balls and flatten into cakes.

Heat cakes in skillet over medium heat until brown on both sides and warm in the center.

Top each pair of bean cakes with 2 eggs fried over medium, a couple of spoonfuls of green salsa and some bleu cheese or feta crumbles.

Serve with a salad of baby field greens!

I’m linking this post to Real Food Wednesdays on Kelly the Kitchen Kop.

Major Set Back

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I was getting off to such a good start squashing negative thoughts and replacing them with positive ones. Every day it gets easier to avoid my old morning routine of lounging on the couch, procrastinating and feeling guilty. These days I get up, wash my face, get dressed and get out into the fresh morning air before I give myself the chance to come up with one reason why my butt should park itself on that soft, comfy, oh-so-inviting corner of slip-covered paradise.

And so it’s gone for the last 3 weeks. I wake, feed the creatures and feel grateful for this beautiful world I am blessed to occupy. And then I go about the business of making it to the office while the hubs holds down the fort for a few hours.

Then there was last Friday and the pain in my neck is still there to remind me of it. The thing is my little sis has a baby with a “man” who mistreats her. They live together in a town about 250 miles away so we don’t see one another very often anymore. She rarely calls because he keeps the phone with him at all times. She doesn’t like to ask his permission to use it either…causes a big fight. When we do get to see her, it’s because he has to come to town to meet with his probation officer. Yeah, he’s super classy.

So anyway, last Friday was one of his appointments and she was in town for just a little while. Seeing her triggered some extremely negative emotions, and now I’m feeling guilty about some of them. On the one hand, I’m angry with her for not keeping in touch more, but then I remember how it is to live with someone like him. I’ve been there too; a long time ago…seems like another lifetime to tell the truth. I know what its like to walk on egg shells, to wonder what might set him off, trying to be perfect and blaming myself for his rages.

He was a fool, on a fool’s path not entitled to my imagination, my creativity, my destiny.

I try to explain this to the rest of the family. And tell them she’s in danger and that he’s abusive but they won’t listen. No one wants to really deal with it because there’s not a whole lot we can do and it’s just easier to ignore the signs and pretend she’s irresponsible and she should leave if he’s such an asshole.

The drama of it all is stirring up my past, things I never want to think about or feel ever again. My neck and shoulders are killing me. I haven’t slept well in a few nights and I have a knot in my stomach. I’m worried and I feel helpless to help my sister. I want to escape my body, fly out into the universe, detach from everything and melt away into a billion particles.

…to cope with it all, I did what any reasonable farmer would,  I got a kick ass hair cut at an expensive salon and drank a bottle of Chardonnay.  Maybe its the hangover?

 

Take the Money and Run

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Whoever says or believes printed newspapers are dead is dead wrong. Small towns just like mine all across America continue to rely on weekly rags for life’s most important information. In addition to the police report and legislative news we get to read who ate what for Sunday dinner, how many county officials have been busted for moonshining, births, deaths, and my personal favorite Letters to the Editor.

I found last week’s County Times particularly interesting because it featured an article about what state auditors discovered when reviewing our county’s accounting system (a term I use very loosely here). I would provide a link to that article but our newspaper doesn’t appear on the World Wide Web at this juncture in human history.

Anyway, turns out our sheriff’s department has some very creative accounting practices, including allowing inmates to carry the department’s cash deposits to the bank. Well, they’re understaffed said the sheriff and besides, the important thing to remember is none of the money has gone missing. Really Sheriff? And how could you possibly know none is missing in light of the fact the auditors also found your department doesn’t even reconcile the bank statements from month to month. “Well,” you say, “that’s because we recently switched from doing it all by hand to using the computer and the change over has got us behind.” OK, WHAT? You mean to say you just now this year began keeping books on a computer? And you let inmates carry deposits to the bank IN FRONT OF THE AUDITORS? Wonder what goes on there  all the rest of the days of the year when no one is watching.

In other news: Family drives 11 Hours to purchase rare bird, Free Zumba classes being offered, Unemployment climbs to 9.6%, and Hooded Klansmen Walked the Square.

2011 in review

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The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 8,000 times in 2011. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 7 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

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