And it came to a grinding halt

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Working and living on a diversified farm demands much from ones body. Just doing our daily chores requires a bit of strength and more activity then the average American gets in a day. There are hay bales to be moved, buckets of grain and water to be carried. In the deep slippery snow just walking can be a challenge. Then there is the wood that must be carried in to keep the house warm. And now that we are heading towards spring there is even more to do with our bodies. Seeding and prepping beds in the high tunnel for planting. Moving seedling trays from one place to another. Lifting potting soil up and down. This is definitely a job whose application clearly states employees must be able to lift at least 50 pounds.

Normally we can meet those demands pretty easily. During the winter I do a workout routine to help get ready for the demands of the summer. Meadow is able to rest her tired wrists for a few months before the spring milking begins. But the past few weeks here at Breezy Meadows have been a little rough for the physical life. Three weeks ago Meadow after a day of lots of twisting lifting and other strenuous activity woke up and was unable to walk. After a weekend of pain she was able to see a doctor and was diagnosed with tendinitis in the hip. She would need to take it easy and see a Physical Therapist to help work out the problem. This would mean I would have to do all the physical chores for a while until she was all healed up.

Emergency
Unfortunately for that plan last Tuesday night I started having a terrible pain in the abdomen. It went from a general pain to a very specific pain in my lower right abdomen. In the morning I couldn’t stand it anymore and had Meadow drive me to the hospital in Rutland where I was diagnosed with a textbook case of appendicitis. I have never felt such a consistent terrible pain before in my life. The morphine did a good job at numbing everything else but the sharp pain in my gut. I’m sure it did dull the pain quite a bit, which makes me glad I live in modern times. Thinking about what I would have had to deal with in the 1850’s boggles the mind. Even the surgery now is much less invasive than only a few years ago. Three little cuts in my belly that is suppose to take only a week to recover from instead of a large single cut that would have left me out of commission for much longer.

Even the week is to long really for what we need to do here on the farm. Lucky for us we have Meadows family to help us with chores. Meadow is still probably doing too much but I’ll be back on my feet soon and it will help take some of the pressure off of her.

We are lucky that this is happening now and not sometime in May where a week or more of down time could really devastate plans for the summer growing season. It is our job now to reflect on this time and try to create backup plans for times where one or both of us are knocked out of commission for a while.

and to end this on a nice happy note here are some pictures of goats being silly!
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March 2nd, 2014|

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3 Comments

  1. Sylvain March 2, 2014 at 10:40 pm - Reply

    Wow guys hope you’ll get better soon..

  2. tokies March 13, 2014 at 11:10 am - Reply

    hope ur feeling better.. i also want to say you might want to start looking into sake making classes.. “rice wine” it’s a good idea because your grain looks really nice.. also if you have something to say about possible no-till rice farming. i saw very little info on this. ive only seen it attempted using transplants in thick residue. but could never track down the results of the test.

    • josh March 20, 2014 at 11:52 pm - Reply

      I read a paper once about organic rice farming in Australia. If I remember correctly they were direct seeding into a grazed pasture that was then flooded to kill off the top growth. They may have zone tilled or disced it first, but I can’t recall. I think they would do a year of rice then three years of grazing. The test was to see if the third year was necessary which it wasn’t. I did experiment with planting directly into a rolled out round bale last year and the growth between those in the mulch and those out of the mulch was not noticeably different. As we get our soil in better condition we will keep experiment with different ways to grow the rice in our climate.

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