Friday, January 31, 2014

Prodical Blogger Returneth




And I'm back!

Did you miss me? I sure missed you. I had trouble concentrating, couldn't sleep, couldn't eat, couldn't compose operas. One day I even picked up the phone to call you but was afraid some other new blogger you were following would answer. How awkward would that have been? Breaking up-even temporarily-is hard to do. So glad we're back together.

But still..What a fabulous blog-cation. I am refreshed and recycled. Good as new. While I resisted the urge to blog and to read other blogs I did play around with the looks and layout of my blog. I even added pages at the top and dropped in several hundred different backgrounds before deciding on ...green.

And my novel? The whole reason for taking time off from blogging? It is done and query letters are on their way to prospective agents. What have I done?!?! Want to follow along with that drama? Check out my writing specific blog over there...to your right.

                                                             
Subtle Hint

I highly recommend the same type of vacation for all of you. Not that your blogs are stale or anything but mine sure was, worse than day old donuts out of a dumpster.

I should know. I've had my share.

So what else did I do with this time off?  In addition to my novel, and the O'Shaughnessy Writes blog I started TWO more blogs. Some women crochet, cook or run for office. I like to blog. The others are about my family genealogy and about material belongings. Both will serve as foundations for two other books I will self publish for my kids. I'll make them public later on. Since Blogger is still free, seemed like a great place to dump a large amount of data and photographs.

And just makes it that much easier for our government to snoop into my personal life. Because you know how interesting I am to them.

So how about some farm updates you ask ? There have been a few. They are in order of frustration.

1. Farm Sale. Our interested party is no longer interested. Yes, after four long months of conversations, financial sharing, employee training and business projections...he decided it was best for him not to invest in a farm at this time. We found out last week. BUT...from ashes come...dirty hair or something like that. Anyway another couple is interested and working to secure financing.
We remain hopeful. We're idiots that way.

2. January was a terrible month weather wise. The extreme cold proved too much for three of our older calves and we lost all of them in one night even though they had good bedding and adequate housing, At 5 months of age you don't expect such sudden deaths but then again this has been our worst winter in decades. We also lost a few piglets and a couple chickens. The farmers themselves, outside of several falls on the ice...persevere.

3. We discontinued our wholesale agreements with the four grocery stores we served. After 5 years of deliveries and meat juggling (do we sell the burger to Chicago ?, Peoria ? or keep it for next weeks lasagna? They were disappointed but understood. Even though we so enjoyed seeing our name in the grocery store aisles, we feel great relief and now our customers who come direct to our farm will have more meat to choose from. Sort of a Lose-Win-Win scenario.

4. After several years of fighting the good fight regarding raw milk regulations in Illinois, I resigned from the self-appointed leadership position of the raw milk farmers.  At the end of November IDPH pulled the plug on our group and told us Thanks for All Your Work but We Really Don't Need you Anymore. Now the proposed rules go up the chain of command. So it is  a good time for us to let another farmer or consumer lead the fight. We will continue to sell raw milk off of our farm until they drag us off.

I'm a big girl so hopefully they will go after the lightweight farmers first.

5. We continue to dream about The Poor Farm, see the specific page above that I've dedicated to this topic, but the new home plans are on hold now that the farm did not sell. In the meantime we use the 7 acres for target practice.


Enough updates for now. I have things to do...like get back on all YOUR blogs and see what trouble you've been stirring up.




103 comments:

  1. I'm very happy for this update. As usual, you made me smile! I've wondered about whether or not you had potential buyers for the farm. I hope this one works out.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Leigh, loved peeking at your authors website. I learned so much more about self publishing by reading it. You've obviously been doing lots of behind-the-scenes work as well. This book writing thing is such hard work isn't it?!

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  2. Welcome back Donna!!! Morning coffee just isn't same without you.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you farmerstac. I'm drinking my own first pot of the day right now.

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  3. Welcome back! I'd say I really, really missed you, but don't want that going to your head or anything.

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  4. That's a bugger about the farm, and even more of a bugger to lose those animals; it must have been BAD. If you have a look at my page today, you will see that where others do 'target practice', the sun shines (Jealous? Of course not!). WELCOME BACK.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes it was a bugger indeed. BUT today we have ice and rain and then snow to look forward to. Going to check out your blog right now.

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  5. Yay! Welcome back! And I can't wait to hear about your novel, when the time is right of course. So sorry about the setbacks at the farm but you have definitely seen the silver lining in them. We just have to have faith that everything is unfolding as it should. :-)

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    Replies
    1. Funny thing about Faith. You don't know that you have it until you really need it. It was also the name of the girl my first love left me for. He needed Faith too.

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  6. Welcome back1
    Iv'e missed your blog!
    Gill

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Gill all the way over in Derbyshire.

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  7. Regardless of whatever new blogs you start I'll still come by here whenever you post because I like keeping up with your farm life ups and downs. And I like the fresh new look!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Karen. I know how the farm life, the Midwest life is part of your heart. They will have to pry my cold dead fingers off the keyboard before I ever leave The Midlife Farmwife. I'm learned so much about the writing business from reading your blog, it certainly is a small, small, cyber world. Have a great weekend!

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  8. Donna, I missed keeping up with you and the life at the farm. Very sorry to hear that the sale fell through, darn it all! Nice to hear that another victim...I mean buyer is in the wings. It has been cold here hasn't it, we didn't lose any animals but we did lose a pipe - the plumber is much richer after he visited our little homestead. Glad you are back, I missed you.

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    Replies
    1. Martha, We've managed to keep the pipes in the house going but had a couple breaks in the barn. Fortunately caught before much damage. Thanks for missing me, maybe 2014 will be the year we two actually meet. I was wearing the gorgeous red scarf I bought from you last year and was once again amazed by your talent. Now time to go check out your blog!

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  9. Is is lovely to have you back and best of luck with those agents. I was all set to send mine to one and discovered she isn't taking submissions till 1st March. Still happy with the self publishing so it gives me a month to decide.
    Sorry to hear about the calves too :(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Lorna, and thank you. I am having a blast learning about all the ways to publish. So many options. So little time!

      Delete
  10. Welcome back! Sorry to hear about the calves, piglets, and chickens lost to cold. It's been chillier than normal here, too.

    I'm sorry to hear your potential buyer fell through. Four months is a long time to string you along like that :0(

    I didn't find your blogposts stale or boring, but i know how sometimes you just gotta take a break. I try to make myself blog more often, but i don't find things to write about every day, so i figure a couple times a month as a base is fine. I have to stare at a computer screen for a living, so who wants to stare at a screen once the work day's done?

    Any time i see lard, i think of you. Kindly thoughts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Anytime I see lard I think of you" ...Now THAT belongs on a Valentines card for sure! Evidently we were all wrong when we thought the term Lard ass was a criticism

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  11. REALLY sorry about the livestock loss due to the extreme cold! so hard and so harsh... and i'm sorry, too, about the fall-through of the would-be-farm-purchaser. i know you must be so tired of this. hang in there with all you've got. :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. Thanks Tex (hey my other blog followers be sure to check out TexWisGirl's amazing blog. Her photography is out of this world...it's in Texas!) Anyway...yes this winter has been like the winters of my youth. Snowy and cold and more snow and ice. Pleasant (!) surprises every day. And yes we are tired but we are also blessed with so much right here, right now.

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  13. So very glad to see you back!
    Winter is a desperate time for livestock care. So much work, so hard on farmers.
    Relieved that you are refocusing, revising. that is the only way you will get to grow old.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Susan. I'm happy to be back too. A clean house is so overrated. Today it was 20 degrees and it felt BALMY! Stood outside talking to customers, the farrier, the post lady like it was a summer day. It's all relative you know. And yes I am refocused. I hope it takes.

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