Monday, May 2, 2011

and she was

Monday, May 2nd
I woke up at 4:40AM, still sore, but less so. Either my body is used to all this farming business or simply giving in. Weekdays are a routine of their own, and I can only lay there in bed with Gibson for a few minutes. There is much to do.

I get up and change into work clothes. This morning it means a pair of cotton thai fishing pants, tied at my waist, and heavy wool socks over much boots. I throw on a thin cotton sweater and head outside with my dogs. They go about a quick morning relief and then come inside for breakfast. Dogs come first on this farm, always will. They are seen to and fed long before any sheep, chicken, or pony sees a flake of hay. Family always comes first.

When the dogs are settled, I load Gibson's plastic crate into the back of my pickup cab and let him wait at Shotgun until I feed all the hooves and claws, and then head inside to grab my gym bag. I leave for work an hour early to hit the gym. I run a mile on the treadmill every weekday, then shower in the gym before I sit down at my desk chair. My friend Geoff joins me, and unless someone from marketing beats us and puts on Sportscenter, we watch the Science Channel and gab about our lives.

The workday is split into a morning and afternoon, and today I enjoy lunch outside with the dogs. I say dogs, not meaning my three, but with Gibson and his work friends. An English Setter named Ellie, an Australian Shepherd named Jackson, and a cast of other characters (mostly gun dogs, this is Orvis, after all). Some days I run home to the farm to check on things, specially if it's rough weather. But it's a mild day and all was quiet and well stocked with hay and water when I left at 6:45. It would be okay until 5:30 when I pulled back into the drive. Gibson runs and barks and play-growls and wrestles with his friends and the new puppies this season. A little black lab named Hattie tries to join in, but pretty much just barks from the sidelines with his tail wagging. She is such a sight. Me and the other owners sit on the grass and take in the show. Before long Gibson sprints down the hill to bother a well-bred Labrador Puppy named Murph from his lessons in being a gun dog, and then slams into the water of the pond, scaring the young trout and bass. Jackson joins him. Murph goes back to retrieving his plastic dummy. He doesn't mess with that sort.

In the afternoon nothing of great consequence goes on, but I do take a lot of joy in the Obama Chia Pet our E-commerce department has set up in the window. Someone posted his birth certificate next to it. I love my coworkers.

On the ride home Gibson and I crank the radio. Talking Heads And She Was blares and we sing along. (Well, Gibson pants rhythmically—I sing.) We drive west on route 313 into New York, and past Shushan and Cambridge. They are our new stomping grounds. I am falling for Washington County, hard.

I get home to a laundry-list of things that need to be done. I plan on introducing the sheep to the pony tonight. Mostly out of necessity. Heavy rains are coming and I want Jasper to know he can walk right into one of the sheds for shelter if he wants to. I have a feeling though, in this warm weather, he'll just stand in the rain. But he needs to know he has the option. So I let him into the sheep's mostly hard-packed dirt pasture and they run onto his side of greener, softer, ground and continue to munch it into oblivion. I need more pasture, and fast. I plan on assembling a work party soon. A role of Red Brand and some t-posts and I'll be back in business. I just need the manpower. That 1/8 of an acre saturday damn near tore my arms out....

The sheep and Jasper meeting is totally anti-climatic. Lisette tears out there with her lambs, and soon everyone else is out there too. Jasper ignore them all. With the fences hot and the horse shown his optional shelter. I feel like I did all a shepherd can do. So I spend some time with Jasper, trying on his new bridle. It's dark leather and silver conchos shine. He takes the bit and I adjust straps and the throat latch and decide the bridle is fine but the bit is too large. He should have a smaller, swivel bit. But he looks fine in his new headgear, and leads calmly. It was a quiet thrill to see him in his headdress, me holding the reins. I take it off and let him back to sheep time. He's so patient and I am deeply grateful.

Eggs and collected, chicken feed scatted, and the rabbits are seen to. I use the Silver Fox buck to service the two does that need to be bred and he does a heck of a job. This is his second day of whoopee (I had him on the does yesterday between tree pruning and concrete) and now have three probably pregnant does. If each has an average litter of 6-8 kits, that dress out around two or three pounds, then those small hutches have nearly fifty pounds of meat from a few small animals. That's almost half of what raising a pig put in my freezer. Anyone who thinks raising meat requires a huge space in the country needs to read Storey's Guide to Raising Rabbits, or Farm City (or both!). They are an amazing introduction to home-grown meat. Between them and a hutch of meat chickens you could fill a chest freezer in a Brooklyn summer.

It's getting late. I have a chapter to write about my first turkey (TD) for my editor, and I'm feeling lucky to have it ahead of me. Tonight the farm seems okay, no drama and no danger. I call it a night early and kiss Jazz on the head. Just four more days until the weekend and this one should include my first outdoor market. I'm excited for it!

Oh, and for those of you kind enough to read all the way down to this point. Leave a comment to be entered in for a drawing of Frances O'Roark Dowell's novel Ten Miles Past Normal (A young-adult novel inspired by CAF). I'll pick a winner Friday for the hardcover, and mail it your way. And if you are wondering if you won a recent giveaway, check the comments on that post. The last few winners never contacted me to claim their prize!

P.S. I will be at two book events up here soon: from 9-11 at Northshire Books in Manchester Vermont, and then 1PM at Red Fox books in Glens Falls, New York. Come over and meet me and some of my chicken friends. Get books signed, talk turkey, the works.

147 Comments:

Blogger Ms. Gustafson said...

As a part-time teacher, part-time farmer, I love young adult novels, and a-day-in-the-lives! Can't wait to read about tomorrow.
MG, Viola, WI

May 2, 2011 at 8:17 PM  
Blogger Alicia-Marie said...

I find these descriptions of your days fun to read. I just got back from a twilight walk with Cody, the family yorkie-poodle mix. I love bigger dogs, but I am falling for this one. He is shrewd, crazy, and just plain weird. Tonight he gifted me with a headless squirrel. Perhaps part cat?

May 2, 2011 at 8:18 PM  
Blogger Nikki said...

I like these last couple posts! It's really interesting to get a play by play of how you balance both work and the farm. Keep 'em coming, I;m reading :)

May 2, 2011 at 8:21 PM  
Blogger Gelfling said...

I like hearing about your routine! I wish I could watch pups on my lunchbreaks... count me in for the drawing :)

May 2, 2011 at 8:25 PM  
Blogger Calidore said...

I love the fact you are writing about your day to day activities. I am getting a glimpse in just how fulfilling your life is. Thank You.

May 2, 2011 at 8:27 PM  
Blogger unpackingtreasure said...

Thanks for posting about your day!And I love the cover of that book...the title makes me laugh.

May 2, 2011 at 8:28 PM  
Blogger Karl Micheal said...

another great post jenna...please enter me for your drawing..have a wonderful week.

May 2, 2011 at 8:32 PM  
Blogger Turtle Mom said...

I am living a country life vicariously through you. Your pony reminds me of days long ago when I had one.

May 2, 2011 at 8:32 PM  
Blogger Thinkin' Out Loud said...

Love your blog. I would love to win a book based on it.

May 2, 2011 at 8:33 PM  
Blogger unpackingtreasure said...

P.S.If the other winners STILL havent contacted you...let me know!emt136@myway.com :)

May 2, 2011 at 8:36 PM  
Blogger Mel said...

I am loving loving loving this day in life! (and love YA novels like whoa) Your writing is phenomenal!

May 2, 2011 at 8:45 PM  
Blogger Karen said...

I'm tired just reading about all you did in the last few days! LOL
Excellent score on the tack for Jasper!
I'd love to win the book!

May 2, 2011 at 8:46 PM  
Blogger JustCindy said...

I have to read all the way to the bottom I don't want to miss anything. lol

May 2, 2011 at 8:46 PM  
Blogger Tami said...

sounds like a romantic farming day.

May 2, 2011 at 8:50 PM  
Blogger David said...

Great post Jenna;
you are one busy little lady that is for sure. You go girl!
;) D

May 2, 2011 at 8:52 PM  
Blogger Ann said...

You wear me out! But I am so proud of you. Jasper sounds great.

May 2, 2011 at 8:55 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Would love to read a novel inspired by Cold Antler.I think this would appeal to all ages.Thanks for the giveaway!

May 2, 2011 at 8:56 PM  
Blogger Ann said...

Oh, please include me in drawing.

May 2, 2011 at 8:57 PM  
OpenID majesty1700 said...

Very cool

May 2, 2011 at 8:57 PM  
Blogger Joeby said...

Sounds like you had a great day! Good for you to get up so early and also take time to exercise. It is as important as anything we do, yet we put it off so easily.
The book sounds like a fun read!
I really enjoy your blog.

May 2, 2011 at 8:58 PM  
OpenID majesty1700 said...

Very cool

May 2, 2011 at 8:59 PM  
Blogger Sparkless said...

I have two young adults living in my house plus I'd love to read that book too so add my name in your draw.

May 2, 2011 at 8:59 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

I just found your blog and I am loving it. I spend time in Washington County quite often. My grandparents used to own a diary farm in Hudson Falls. I have a son who goes to school in Queensbury. So even though I livein Hamilton County, I drive him to school each day. I would love to see your farm if you ever do tours. You live the kind of life I want to live, and hope to be living sometime in the near future. Thanks for blogging!

May 2, 2011 at 9:00 PM  
Blogger Janice said...

Hi, I would like to be entered in the drawing for the book. Thanks!

May 2, 2011 at 9:02 PM  
Blogger oukay said...

The book would be right up my daughter's alley!

May 2, 2011 at 9:03 PM  
Blogger Rachael said...

Can't wait to hear more about the meat rabbits. I've been considering raising a few for awhile now. I should probably start with eating one first though, hm?

May 2, 2011 at 9:09 PM  
Blogger City Sister said...

What a day...it sounds like hard work and a lot of fun...I love that good kind of sore...the type where something got done.

May 2, 2011 at 9:19 PM  
Blogger Ozy said...

Oh! I love books so much adjectives strong enough to describe my love of books don't even exist.
Also, I like this look into your day-to-day look and, since I didn't comment on the other post, congratulations on getting Jasper. He's lovely.

May 2, 2011 at 9:24 PM  
OpenID JustAnotherGraphicsGirl said...

Loving the detailed descriptions of your daily life! You inspire me. Thanks to you, I'm cooking at home much more (and loving it). You are so very lucky to be able to take Gibson to work with you and enjoy his company during your lunch break. Keep the daily posts coming!

May 2, 2011 at 9:34 PM  
Blogger DaShannon said...

Would love to read a YA novel in this vein...

May 2, 2011 at 9:35 PM  
Blogger dk said...

Great post!! I enjoy reading about your daily routines.

May 2, 2011 at 9:36 PM  
Blogger small farm girl said...

I love your "normal day" posts! Please put me in your drawing.

May 2, 2011 at 9:42 PM  
Blogger J. said...

Jenna, your "normal day" sounds tiring AND exciting! Your writing always speaks to my old farmgirl heart. You are one talented young woman.

May 2, 2011 at 9:51 PM  
Blogger DarcC said...

"10 miles past normal" sounds a lot like where I live...count me in please!

May 2, 2011 at 9:52 PM  
OpenID innerpickle said...

Count me in! I looked up this book after you mentioned it earlier. And I love hearing about your day.

May 2, 2011 at 9:59 PM  
Blogger Casie said...

I'm really enjoying your a-day-in-the-life posts this week!

May 2, 2011 at 10:16 PM  
OpenID notherethenwhere said...

Sounds (again) like quite the day. It's enlightening and inspiring to see what a day looks like for you, so thanks for sharing.

May 2, 2011 at 10:22 PM  
Blogger DebH said...

lovin the daily story and I often think of my routine as pretty fascinating also. Seems there has to be some drama and some sad and lots of smiles in everyday goings on. I wish I could convey it as well as you do. I love your writing and you are just a talent!

May 2, 2011 at 10:28 PM  
Blogger Christine Izzo said...

I'd love to win and read this book. Love your blog. Thanks so much!

...And happy to hear the horse and the herd are friends now!

May 2, 2011 at 10:29 PM  
Blogger Jenn said...

I love this new 'series' of posts about your day-to-day events! You have such a way of writing that makes me feel like I'm right there doing them too. It's exactly what this barnheart suffering girl needs. You've got so many awesome things going on Jenna, yay for you!!! You should be so proud.

May 2, 2011 at 10:34 PM  
Blogger Carrie in Wisconsin said...

An inspiring post as always Jenna! For me, someday, someday, I will get that farm!

May 2, 2011 at 10:34 PM  
Blogger Homestead Mama said...

I love reading your posts. It's great to see another woman around my age making her dreams come true. You are a great inspiration and proof it can be done. I would love to be entered into the drawing. Thank you for sharing your life and farm with us.

May 2, 2011 at 10:39 PM  
Blogger Kris said...

Busy, busy Jenna. Sounds like a long day. But so good to get home. Can't wait to read more of your week.

May 2, 2011 at 10:43 PM  
Blogger Chppie said...

Thanks so much about sharing about your day. And the reminder about the contests. I always forget to go back to previous posts.

May 2, 2011 at 10:51 PM  
Blogger Dayle said...

Love reading about your days. I wished I lived on our farm so I could have animals. Our full time jobs are 3 hours away from the farm. Weekends are rough with that 3 hour drive back home after busting buns all day!!!
I'd love to win a book to read on the ride!!!
Someday soon we will build a house on the land!

May 2, 2011 at 10:52 PM  
Blogger Rebecca said...

Ooo! I've been wanting to read this. Thanks for sharing your days.

May 2, 2011 at 10:55 PM  
Blogger livin life said...

I always "make" it to the end of your posts! I live a similar life...but without your way with words. Seize the Day!

May 2, 2011 at 10:57 PM  
Blogger georgie said...

Jenna, I was given two used polo pony bridles and bits a few years ago. The reins were repurposed into dog leashes. I still have the bits-one may be a swivel bit. If you want them, you can have them for the cost of postage. How can I contact you with photos of the pony bits?

May 2, 2011 at 11:07 PM  
Blogger *sweetcaroline* said...

It's nice to hear about your normal everyday, not just the tough bits! I love Jasper. We need more pictures of him.

May 2, 2011 at 11:09 PM  
Blogger From the Country Farm said...

ha ha ha 10 miles past normal, that is my life! totally need to read the book even if I don't win it here!

May 2, 2011 at 11:12 PM  
Blogger Nikki said...

Ten miles past normal is so far in my rear view mirror I obviously need to win this book so I can remember what it looked like!
Thanks for the chance!

May 2, 2011 at 11:15 PM  
Blogger Matt said...

Very interesting to hear some of the details that make CAF run. Also aggravates my chronic case of Barnheart (soon, soon, remedy soon...). I would love to read a book inspired by CAF.

May 2, 2011 at 11:30 PM  
Blogger Donna said...

Your blog is keeping me going right now, when it seems like my dream of my own homestead is so far away. Thanks for letting all of us in.

May 2, 2011 at 11:54 PM  
Blogger Cristhiano said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

May 2, 2011 at 11:56 PM  
Blogger Cristhiano said...

I just can't get enough of your tales about the farm. I am still in Las Vegas in a Homeowners Association which doesn't allow chickens !! But the dream is set and I am determined to get some land soon... I am going to AZ on Memorial Day to explore that area. We are bringing another couple with us, who might join us in our homesteading endeavors.
Cristhiano, NV

May 2, 2011 at 11:58 PM  
Blogger Cathi said...

That was a lovely glimpse into your day. Thank you. I already have the book on request at the library, but my own copy would be lovely.

May 3, 2011 at 12:05 AM  
Blogger John Taylor said...

Jenna,

Wow in just the few posts about your week it shows just how busy you really are. Keep up the great work!

Grace and Peace,

John

May 3, 2011 at 12:39 AM  
Blogger Sherrill said...

That is quite the day!

I applaud you for taking it all on.

You amaze me!

Cheers,
Sherrill

May 3, 2011 at 12:47 AM  
Blogger Karen said...

Your blog has become my little treat at the end of the day! You always bring a smile to my lips with your humor and I am in awe of your spirit. You really need to compile your blog into a book which I think you said has been mentioned before. Your writing is wonderful. On a different note check out multianimalcrackers on youtube to see some wonderful videos of clicker training first a pony and now a donkey in England. I think you would enjoy them. Take care!

May 3, 2011 at 1:16 AM  
Blogger Ruth @ Hope, Joy and Faith Farm said...

Wonderful blog, as always. A YA novel would be wonderful to win, especially if I can beat my 15 year old teen to it. She is a big-time reader like her momma (I'm lucky, all 3 of my girls read voraciously). Have a wonderful evening, tho by now you are tucked away in your bed dreaming farm dreams.

May 3, 2011 at 1:24 AM  
Blogger kerri.warmus said...

Enjoy reading your blog. Hope to win.

May 3, 2011 at 1:53 AM  
OpenID simplesavvy said...

Jasper seems like a real dear. I'm very much enjoying learning about your days and exactly what goes into your one-woman show. Thanks!

May 3, 2011 at 1:53 AM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

Good to see that so many people read the whole post. They must like your writng as much as I do.

Have fun Jenna and I'll catch you later.

May 3, 2011 at 3:39 AM  
Blogger ward said...

Wow, Jenna. There is just so much to get done.

I teach full time. Rise around 4-ish and I must have my coffee and CAF first thing. Then its clean the cat box (the dog and the wife are still in bed,) feed and move the meat birds (I just finished building their new chicken tractor so they can graze on "the pasture"), then I have to feed the layers, look in on the angora bunnies (they usually don't need much until a little later in the morning), come back in and make the coffee for the wife, take a shower, and start my :30 minute commute. Since the noodle works best in the morning I try to get to work between 7 and 7:30. I wish there was time for a run.

I try to get home by 4:30 but I don't often get back until 5-ish. Then its on to something else; cut the grass for garden mulch, weed the beds, harvest and wash veg for the CSA, start dinner, built/fix something or other. At our best, we eat dinner around 8:30 or 9 and then its collapse time.

I have no clue how you have time to read and/or write. In fact, as I write this comment outlining my day, I am neglecting my morning chores.

Peace,
ward

May 3, 2011 at 5:37 AM  
Blogger Odie Langley said...

Your post was great as usual and the novel would be great as well.

May 3, 2011 at 5:40 AM  
Blogger Kathy said...

No pressure, Jenna, but today is truly my birthday and I have held this book longingly in my hands at the bookstore. Actually, my present for my birthday week is your "Week in the Life of Cold Antler Farm". I read it every morning before heading off to teach my precocious fourth graders. Thank you so much for sharing your life with your readers.

May 3, 2011 at 6:13 AM  
Blogger Maria said...

If your giveaway generosity for postal costs extends as far as the UK, I would love to be entered in the draw!

I'm loving your day-by-day week-in-the-life-of-Jenna by the way. Major respect at the amount of sheer hard work and early mornings you put in!

May 3, 2011 at 6:32 AM  
Blogger farmgirljen said...

Please sign me up for the book. I teach junior high and would love to share this with my kids.

May 3, 2011 at 6:51 AM  
Blogger girlandcat5 said...

Jenna reading about your day to day adventures had totally made my day :) thanks so much for sharing it with us. -Heather

May 3, 2011 at 6:58 AM  
Blogger Dog and Malone said...

I have four Grandkids That I would love to read/give/explain this to!

May 3, 2011 at 6:59 AM  
Blogger booksNyarn said...

Thanks for continuing to share your days with all of us out here!

And darn! I was just in Red Fox a couple weeks ago when I came up to visit my parents (Lake George-born and raised). Hope you have a fabulous signing there and Northshire. They are terrific stores.

May 3, 2011 at 7:20 AM  
Blogger Joe said...

I have that book in queue for my daughter, and didn't even know about the CAF connection!

May 3, 2011 at 7:31 AM  
Blogger I am a quilter said...

I love the fact that you can keep your dog at work...I also keep my dogs at work but I also work from home.
Emily Gail Wyett, Huntington Beach, CA

May 3, 2011 at 7:47 AM  
Blogger Tarheelbilly said...

It's always a pleasure checking in on your adventures. Did you get to hear Alice Walker's interview on NPR yesterday? She discussed her new book, "Chicken Chronciles." It seems that raising chickens and participating in "subsitance farming" is being recognized as vitial to intellectual health as well. I'd love to read the YA novel-- it's great that your work continues to inspire folks. :-)

May 3, 2011 at 7:51 AM  
Blogger PurrfectPetSitting said...

Seriously, do you have more hours in your day than I do? How do you manage to do it all? I work part time, have my own business and live on 14 acres. I barely have time to put in a garden this year...and a small garden at that! I am in awe of you! :)

May 3, 2011 at 7:51 AM  
Blogger Samantha said...

Thrilled about the book. What an honor.

May 3, 2011 at 8:13 AM  
Blogger Tina and her boys said...

Well, of COURSE we read all the way to the bottom. The bottom always has the best crumbs! Glad the Jasper-sheep introduction was a *nothing* event. :)

May 3, 2011 at 8:17 AM  
Blogger katiegirl said...

I can always use a new book.

May 3, 2011 at 8:19 AM  
Blogger Sam said...

Glad things are settling in with Jasper!! would love to read that book too..

May 3, 2011 at 8:30 AM  
Blogger hippychick said...

I love this week's play-by-play of your daily life. Thanks for sharing!

May 3, 2011 at 8:38 AM  
Blogger Abby said...

Jenna, I know you might not want to, but electric netting is glorious. I couldn't farm without it. Its light, easy to move and you can rotate pasture like a dream.

May 3, 2011 at 8:41 AM  
Blogger juliewondergem said...

Everyday I am more inspired by your posts. I really feel like I am getting somewhere with my little corner and you inspire me everyday to take it to the next level. Thank you for that.
Julie, IA

May 3, 2011 at 8:42 AM  
Blogger Rural Revival said...

I'd love to read the CAF inspired novel as much as my kids. : )

~Andrea~

May 3, 2011 at 8:46 AM  
Blogger Fawn said...

Pick me! :)

May 3, 2011 at 8:57 AM  
Blogger Margaret said...

I don't know where you get all your energy. I would love the book

May 3, 2011 at 9:02 AM  
Blogger Victoria Strauser said...

It's always interesting to see how another farmer with an off-farm job spends their days. Thanks for sharing!

PS - I recently ordered your books and am enjoying reading the chicken book - I'm hoping it warms up here enough to put my chicks out in their hoop house today!

May 3, 2011 at 9:13 AM  
Blogger Julie said...

I'm a new reader and am loving your posts! Just like other folks are saying - it's great to hear how you balance work life and farm life :o)

May 3, 2011 at 9:23 AM  
Blogger treehuggers kitchen said...

Jenna, I'm loving this 'one week' thing that you're doing. Great reading!

May 3, 2011 at 9:24 AM  
Blogger Drummond Farms Alpacas and Woolens said...

Our family loves to read your posts and we are so proud of you. What a great inspiration you are to all of us. We would love to be part of your drawing. Blessings to you.

May 3, 2011 at 9:25 AM  
Blogger Patsy said...

Love hearing about your days and weeks. Please enter me in the drawing and give the dogs some scratches from me.

May 3, 2011 at 9:28 AM  
Blogger phaedra96 said...

Wow. Quite a reader list! I read your blog almost every day and catch up on posts when I cannot. I am so happy you are living your dream while you are young enough to establish. Farming can hurt! I guess you know that!

May 3, 2011 at 9:30 AM  
Blogger Maria said...

Another great day in your life......

May 3, 2011 at 9:34 AM  
Blogger kelly adele hatfield said...

Please enter me in the book draw! I love all your farm stories and am sure this can be no less wonderful :)

May 3, 2011 at 9:36 AM  
Blogger Sarah said...

Love it. I always read you through. :)
The warm weather when everything going alright is what makes the cold weather when everything's going to hell worth it.
- Sarah

May 3, 2011 at 9:40 AM  
Blogger 2houndnight said...

Goodness, I go away for the weekend and am out with a sick kid on Monday and when I come back you've gotten yourself a horse....you go girl!
As a long-time horse owner I really look forward to hearing about your adventures with Jasper....
Thanks for sharing your days with us...
2houndnight, Western, MA

May 3, 2011 at 10:11 AM  
Blogger jim said...

jenna, you've come a very long way in your journey. We worry about you overdoing and wearing out. Take some Jenna time and smell the roses, revel in what you have and what you have accomplished, get out the dulcimer or fiddle and hammer out some of that good mountain music, you deserve it all.Give all the animals hugs from us, especially the pups. Jim

May 3, 2011 at 10:27 AM  
Blogger Rae said...

Go Jenna!

May 3, 2011 at 11:10 AM  
Blogger Melanie Dane Mom said...

I am SO enjoying your day-by-day. Count me in for the drawing too!

May 3, 2011 at 11:10 AM  
Blogger Lavigne Photography said...

what is the date on the book signing in Manchester?
:) over here in vt

May 3, 2011 at 11:28 AM  
Blogger jen said...

Thank you, Jenna!

May 3, 2011 at 11:39 AM  
Blogger Marlies said...

Great blog as usual! My mal mix- Jasper says to tell you what a great name for your pony. You are living the life that I long to live also. My husband does not think that we can homestead on a half an acre. I still want my own laying hens; but, he says not until we get some more acreage.

May 3, 2011 at 11:40 AM  
Blogger Kate said...

Love to hear about your days. Would love to read this book. I'll likely buy it if I don't win it because it sounds like a great summer read. We have dogs at work too and they are a great stress relief. Mine can't come cause he's got a loud greeting for everyone he meets but I love to have the fogs here.

May 3, 2011 at 11:45 AM  
Blogger Jimmie said...

Hi Jenna,

I just finished reading your Made from Scratch book and loved it. What a roller coaster you're on much of the time. Your blog and book are an inspiration and just this moment I'm inspired to share with you a bit of my "made from scratch" moments.

My husband and I went to the woods, cut the trees, hewed the logs and built our own log house. Very labor intensive, but oh, so rewarding. We dry stacked the stone chimney and I split the shakes for our roof. We cut the trees for our floors from a neighbor's property where he wanted to put in a garden. Great trade off and our 18" boards are such a joy, except when they shrink in the winter. That's a small inconvenience for the beauty and strength they provide.

We have twenty acres and let another farmer plant orchard grass on nine of the acres. We don't charge him rent as we are grateful to have the land be worked. We have a small garden and for the first time in forty years, I am not working full time so I can spend time working in the garden more often instead of only on the weekends. Until recently my commute was three hours daily and I so understand the business of juggling work and farm. When we were buidling our house, we lived three hours away and had to drive to our property on the weekends to work on the house. Then once we moved, my three hour commute was to work and back. By Monday, my hands were so tired, they didn't want to do the things my job demanded. It's so frustrating when your body tires out before your enthusiasm, isn't it?

Thanks for your book and blog...I am thoroughly enjoying hearing about your experiences and am glad that I can understand some of what you're going through. I do have a couple of questions of you: How do you handle being away from your farm overnight - say a couple of nights? We want and have room for a cow, chickens, and sheep, but I'm worried about those times when we want or need to be away for a couple of days. Can chickens fend for themselves a couple of days if they have a safe coop, food and water? It would be a great thing to start out with chickens, I think, but I just don't know how much time they can be left on their own.

Thanks for enduring my long comment.

Diane in North Carolina

May 3, 2011 at 11:56 AM  
Blogger Kyler and Sylvia said...

Count me in :-)

On a side note, i wasn't able to find a post re:Ashley English books as to who is the winner.

May 3, 2011 at 12:03 PM  
Blogger DivaHick said...

I'm a homeschooler of a teenager- we could make it part of our curriculum...

May 3, 2011 at 12:08 PM  
Blogger Joy in California said...

Your energy to write a review of each day in such detail is a marvel!

May 3, 2011 at 12:14 PM  
Blogger Lavigne Photography said...

what is the date on the book signing in Manchester?
:) over here in vt

May 3, 2011 at 1:02 PM  
Blogger Jenna said...

I'll be in Machester and Glens Falls on May 14th. 9Am at Northshire, and 1pm at Red Fox Books

May 3, 2011 at 1:03 PM  
Blogger Harmony said...

Love hearing about your day-to-day routine and always love reading your posts.

-Harmony

May 3, 2011 at 1:06 PM  
Blogger Erin Leigh said...

I have always loved young adult novels. Right now, reading The Ranger's Apprentice series. Great fun! (and I'm 38!)

May 3, 2011 at 1:13 PM  
Blogger Kristin Marsh said...

Your blog is always an inspiration, Jenna!

May 3, 2011 at 1:32 PM  
Blogger susan said...

Sounds amazing! Can't wait for more daily replays.

May 3, 2011 at 1:46 PM  
Blogger Katie said...

You make me think I could do this. Now to convince my husband...and get done with school...and get some land...well it may be a while. But I am loving reading about it while I wait. Thanks for the blog!

May 3, 2011 at 2:04 PM  
Blogger gooddoug said...

I like the posts, Jenna. I like the glimpse into your 9-5 life as well.
And with all the work you do on the farm, why go running at all ;)
It will be interesting for you to look back at these posts in a year and see what you thought was important enough about your days to write about.

May 3, 2011 at 2:09 PM  
Blogger candisrrt said...

I am so enjoying reading about your week! I have just started a garden in my yard and am yearning for chickens and rabbits! Just wonderful to read about your days!

May 3, 2011 at 2:10 PM  
Blogger Kimberlie Ott said...

Thanks for great morning reading, loved your post, and please count me in also for the drawing. Thanks!

May 3, 2011 at 2:27 PM  
Blogger Kris said...

I am loving reading your day to day descriptions of life at CAF.

I'm sure my two daughters would love to read the book based on it (heck, I would love to read it too!). My girls often tell me how they are often accused at school of being "Amish or something" because of our homesteading lifestyle.

May 3, 2011 at 2:42 PM  
Blogger FTM Farmer said...

great days ahead

May 3, 2011 at 3:12 PM  
Blogger Lyssa Kaehler said...

I'm thinking about getting meat rabbits, too. It seems like the only meat thing I could reasonably raise in my city yard, and they are damn tasty.

Love the description of the dogs playing.

May 3, 2011 at 3:41 PM  
Blogger Ted_De said...

Thank you for the post. I hope the sun burn subsides soon also!

May 3, 2011 at 4:19 PM  
Blogger Tamara said...

I love your blog and have been reading it for a while now. Totally enjoying your day in the life posts.!

May 3, 2011 at 4:53 PM  
Blogger Carol said...

As always, thank you for sharing your daily life with us. You are the first thing I read about every morning and when I get home at night, just in case you were able to make 2 posts. I would love to read the novel, so count me in!

May 3, 2011 at 5:51 PM  
Blogger Darren said...

Test

May 3, 2011 at 5:53 PM  
Blogger doglady said...

Test

May 3, 2011 at 5:54 PM  
Blogger damnyankee said...

You have such full days. How lucky to work at such a neat place. Sleeping is just practicing for death. Keep on keepin on....

May 3, 2011 at 6:02 PM  
Blogger Caitlin-Cats Critters said...

I love you blog and I'm extremely jealous of you getting Jasper. I'm also an huge reader and have read 84 books this year and am working on my 85th.

May 3, 2011 at 6:43 PM  
Blogger Bri said...

Would love to be in the running for the book, and am really enjoying the details of your daily life! thanks for sharing with us!

May 3, 2011 at 7:20 PM  
Blogger Lauren said...

Even though you are sick and things aren'g quite rosy, I've enjoyed your play by play action. I've been slowly saving for my own bit of land and this helps greatly in understanding the committment.

Feel better soon!

May 3, 2011 at 7:28 PM  
Blogger Noël McNeil said...

My husband and I just bought our first house with two acres and I am gearing up for some sheep! I would love to win the book...I am an avid reader. ;)

May 3, 2011 at 7:39 PM  
Blogger Sarah Rachelle said...

What a day! I thought my kids waking me up at 6 am every morning was early...
Would love to win the book!

May 3, 2011 at 8:14 PM  
Blogger Cynthia said...

Please enter me in the drawing. I teach Language Arts to middle schoolers!
Cynthia R

May 3, 2011 at 8:27 PM  
Blogger Suzanne said...

I hope I didnt win something in the past and not know it- I assumed you would email if I won so didnt go back to look. Please enter me again~Suzanne

May 3, 2011 at 9:04 PM  
Blogger Yart said...

I would love to be entered to win the book.

May 3, 2011 at 9:19 PM  
Blogger Cheezbunny said...

What a soothing post. Even with thoughts of hard work and sweat, it never fails to lull me.

May 3, 2011 at 10:33 PM  
Blogger delpasored said...

Love your blog. It's the first stop of my daily routine. Keep writing!

May 3, 2011 at 11:25 PM  
Blogger Ducky said...

Sounds like an interesting story

May 3, 2011 at 11:50 PM  
Blogger Matt said...

Like these current posts! Can't wait until we find our perfect farm.

May 3, 2011 at 11:53 PM  
Blogger Kathleen said...

So nice to hear how your days go!

May 4, 2011 at 7:12 AM  
Blogger Tigersmom said...

Looking forward to reading the book, I will buy it if I do not win it :)

May 4, 2011 at 12:43 PM  
Blogger lemontreelane said...

you are such a good writer!

May 4, 2011 at 12:54 PM  
Blogger Jenna Gayle said...

I'm enjoying reading your day in the life of, too!!

I would love to be entered into the book drawing! Thanks so much!

May 4, 2011 at 2:11 PM  
Blogger Jenna said...

Maria, with the comment that ended in ellipses...you are the winner! Email me your address!

May 4, 2011 at 7:14 PM  
Blogger pond said...

I wish, wish, wish I could leave a comment without signing up for a google account!!! what's with that? I love this blog, and I love this give away. I would have posted comments on so many of your posts... arg...

Damn and blast the red tape, but, ahem... here I am.

May 4, 2011 at 7:24 PM  
Blogger USMCmom said...

I am enjoying the details of your days. I love reading this type of book too. I'm a middle school special education tech and have several autistic students I'd love to share this book with!

May 4, 2011 at 7:57 PM  
Blogger Sherry Sutherby http://russ-stickacres.blogspot.com/ said...

We raise American Silver Fox also...but free-range. Just remember, don't ever put a buck in with a doe...always the doe in with the buck. She will maim or kill him if you plunk him in her cage. Joel Salatin's son, Daniel, has THE best information on raising rabbits on their DVD. (FYI...in case you weren't aware.:)

May 4, 2011 at 10:14 PM  
Blogger kim said...

It's fun to hear about your adventures as crazy or mundane as they can be :o)

May 5, 2011 at 5:35 PM  
Blogger Eleanor said...

I am lovin' a week in the life of Jenna, and would love to win the book!

May 6, 2011 at 7:10 AM  

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