Featured Farmers: Lisa's Story

Today's Featured Farmer is Lisa of Fresh Eggs Daily
Welcome Lisa, and thank you for sharing your story with us today!

1. Tell us a little about yourself! 

I raised an assorted flock of chickens and ducks, formerly on a hobby farm in Virginia, and very recently on our new farm in Maine! We also have two horses, a German shepherd, a corgi and a barn cat. I also have a large vegetable garden and an herb garden. We don't eat our chickens or ducks, but we do eat their delicious fresh eggs! We also share them with friends, family and neighbors.

I work from home, writing my blog and posting to my Facebook page and doing freelance writing for various homesteading and chicken magazines and websites. I wrote a book Fresh Eggs Daily: Raising Happy, Healthy Chickens...Naturally (St. Lynn's Press, October 2013) and the upcoming Duck Eggs Daily: Raising Happy, Healthy Ducks...Naturally. And I'm currently working on a proposal for my third book.

I also have an Etsy shop in which I sell signed copies of my book, blown out chicken and duck eggs, chicken decals, lavender sleep sticks, nesting box herbs, and other farm and repurposed items.


A Spark of the Divine

I'll be honest.

In light of all the hurt in the world, in the midst of scary words like ISIS, of devastated refugee families, of hunger close to home... it seems a little silly, this home remodel project of ours.

I mean, in the face of eternity, does pulling up carpets really matter?


Blessings this Week: 09.25.2015 Edition

This week, I'm reminded that counting blessings is about shifting perspectives. Because no matter the season, no matter the struggles, there's always something to be grateful for.

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The brazen squirrel who doesn't budge from his hiding place and makes eye contact as I walk past

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Supportive people who believe in me

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To My Pregnant Former Student

It's been awhile, hasn't it- a while since I taught you English and grammar and how to read Shakespeare. Two years, I think.

I don't think you were expecting to see me walk into the restaurant where you work this lovely Saturday morning. It's always kind of weird to see teachers out of a classroom setting. I know it always felt Twilight-Zone-y to me.

A lot has changed- I'm not teaching anymore, for one. But I'd say things have changed for you even more.

That plain white canvas apron around your 17-year-old waist can't conceal the fact that you're carrying a heart below your own.


White for Harvest

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"Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest."- John 4:35*

(*Before moving to Iowa, I never really understood what "white fields" really meant. I'm pretty sure that Jesus wasn't alluding to corn... but it is true that even corn turns almost white when harvest time comes around. And Iowa... we have a lot of corn. )

I love Jesus's words here in John.


Lift up your eyes! 
How often am I so focused on the things right in front of me- on the dishes to be washed, invoices to be sent, e-mails to be answered, laundry to be folded- that I forget to look? To lift up my eyes?

Because here, in this moment, in this season, in this place, the fields are white around me.

Hearts are ready. Ears are open.

But if I don't see them, if I don't look up and take the opportunity to have the conversation, to give the hug, to sit and listen, I will miss it.


Blessings this Week: 09.18.2015 Edition

Counting my blessings, and finding the ever-present joy of the Lord because of His goodness to me!

Open-window weather

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5 Painting Tips for the Truly Amateur: A Farmhouse Update


We've been busy bees around our little farmhouse lately! All the flooring is torn up, walls are washed, and we just finished doing all the painting on the first floor.

Five rooms are done, and I've learned some very important tips when it comes to painting your home.

Disclosure: Some of the links provided in this post are affiliate links. **


Finding God in the Quiet

I've had a lot of time to think lately.

Which seems strange, given the fact that I'm working full-time, in the middle of relaunching this little blog and doing some redesign stuff myself (and then fixing the problems I'm causing by doing the blog redesign myself...), and remodeling our farmhouse.

One thing about spending so many of my evenings out at the farmhouse painting and re-carpeting and pulling nails is that it's sort of... quiet.

Most of my days are filled with noise.

You probably know exactly what I mean.

My days are full of demands, of noisy thoughts, of a constant narrative in my head. I'm interrupted from projects by phone calls and e-mails. Did I process that discount? Which family needed a portable crib, again? Did I remember to send that reply? How many campers, how many beds, how many deposits?

I love it, yes. But sometimes, at the end of a busy day, I just want to sit quietly.

I don't. I don't usually sit quietly. Usually I go home and turn on the radio, the TV, a movie, read a book, or pay bills, or check Facebook. My mind is unaccustomed to having any real time of quiet... and it's uncomfortable. It seems wrong, somehow.

But lately. Lately we've been coming home and changing clothes, and going out to the farmhouse.


Featured Farmers: Amy's Story

Today's Featured Farmer is Amy of A Farmish Kind of Life.
Welcome, Amy, and thanks for joining us today!

1. Tell us a little about yourself!

We moved to our 5 acre farm around Christmas 2011. Currently, we raise chickens (both meat and layers), pheasants, and pigs. In the past we had horses and goats but found they weren’t a good fit for our family. We hope in the future to have a cow.

We also have two 2100 square foot gardens and are adding raised gardens around the property. We have a large raspberry patch, grapevines, and are hoping to start apple trees soon. My husband works nights in law enforcement and I homeschool my sons, ages 11 and 12.


Blessings These Weeks: 09.04.2015 and 09.11.2015

Finding the blessings, even when they're not what I thought they'd be.

Cicada shells and knowing that it's still summer (and the warm weather, too!)

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Productive evenings

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Sore shoulders

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Borrowed movies and a big huge quilt


Choosing Paint, And Why We Went with Diamond Vogel: A Farmhouse Update

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To be perfectly honest, when we started this house project, I had no idea what I was doing.

Still don't, for the most part.

I'm learning as I go.

But one thing that I did know, right from the start, was that I wanted to use quality paint to paint all of our interior walls.

Painting is inconvenient even if you do it right, but it can be a huge ole pain in the neck if you don't do it right. There's really no sense in using cheapy-cheap paint and then repainting everything because  a) it looks terrible or b) it chips, fades, peels, or just does funny cheap-paint things.

I'm all for doing things right the first time.

But what paint brand to go with?


The Speckled Goat

I have some high expectations for this life of mine.

I want perfect. I want planned, well-structured, clean-cut lines. I want scheduled. I want expectations exceeded, I want organized, I want unblemished. Simple and righteous and consistent and black-and-white.

Of course, my life looks nothing like that.

Maybe yours doesn't, either.


Introducing: The Speckled Goat!

Welcome, welcome to the new website!

I'm so excited for this new season.

A few housekeeping-type things/questions you just may be asking:


Grace for the Ho-Ho Eaters

I love the idea of all-natural living- of not eating processed food, of living without chemicals and really living off the land.

It all sounds so wonderful.

But the trouble is, my real life looks very different.

I drink an occasional diet Coke. There is Hamburger Helper in my pantry, and the soap on my soap dish was not made by yours truly.

And you know what? I think that's okay. 


... So, Now What? (Introducing a New Series!)

I did not grow up near any of these things.

Pretty much the opposite.

I spent my formative years playing in a backyard that jutted up to four others, in a subdivision with neighbors on all sides, riding bikes while watching for cars and walking down the street to the grocery store with my mom.

Wide open spaces was something for vacations and field trips to "the farm" (which was really just a big petting zoo with cute goats).

Then, in high school, something catastrophic happened.

My family moved to rural Iowa.

And I fell in love.

First with those wide open spaces, with watching the thunderheads roll in from miles away, with the quiet and the peace and the friendly way that the old men wave at each passing vehicle.

And then I fell in love with the son of a cattle farmer who spent his childhood on tractors and filling grain bins. He knows what a commodity shed is. Knows the difference between a Charolais and Hereford.