Sunday, December 15, 2013

2013 In Review - *Brag Alert*

The other day I made a list of everything we accomplished in 2013 and I think its a pretty good list! I will try to include some photos. If you see anything you're particularly interested in learning more about, let me know in the comments and I will try to feature it in a future post! 
Here goes! (They're in no particular order.)

  • improved electric fence to contain goats
  • Built grape arbor

Josh's own design for  grape arbor

  • expanded strawberry bed (new strawberries didn't really grow, a project for 2014!)
  • planted grapes, hops, more vegetables, herbs
  • butchered more quail and chicken
  • roofed the last chicken pen, so now all of them are covered
  • stick to a budget for the second half of the year
  • actually made a little profit with the animals
  • made a chick brooder from an old speaker!

speaker brooder - for 1st few days after hatch
  • made a bigger garden area and fenced the goats out of it
  • built goat stall and feeder in barn
  • entered birds in 3 poultry shows and the Rockingham County Fair
  • won Best OEGB and Reserve SCCL at Rockingham County Fair
  • bought a spinning wheel for $60 - still working on getting it into working condition
  • Started to cut WAY back on how much we eat out - a huge part of budgeting for us!
  • Made more hay  - didn't help much after we...
  • bought 5 more goats and bred the ones we already had

4 of the 5 new goats
  • made a trashcan blind from pallets
  • Josh learned how to make beer and made a lot of it... I've lost track how much!
  • Josh also made a batch each of grape and cherry wine
  • We replaced the brakes in the Xterra ourselves
  • installed 2 new ceiling fans - helps a lot on not using the air conditioning!
  • grew a lot more food than in years past
  • froze chicken, quail, venison, tomatoes, green beans, peas, salsa, strawberries, peaches, corn, herbs, pumpkin, and onions
  • Made strawberry jam, grape jelly, dill and sweet pickles, applesauce, & pumpkin butter. Also made all our own bread except some bagels, hamburger buns, and tortillas
  • Did a lot of sewing and alterations for people
  • built patio
  • made new herb and flower bed

here is the patio and new garden bed from the freshly painted porch!
  • built a workspace in the "cellar" and improved the storage down there (worthy of its own post!)
  • Betsy got approved as a driver at Stuarts Draft Rescue Squad, also ran 60+ calls with them and helped with  other projects
  • We inherited a lot more tools - been putting them to good use!
  • started using mostly homemade cleaners around the house & reusable Swiffer cloths instead of the pricey bought ones
  • made 5 blood donations with Virginia Blood Services
  • Went to Hershey Park, PA with Blondie & Tbone and had a BLAST!
  • Went on a few other day trips around Virginia
View from the Blue Ridge Parkway, July 2013
And last, but hopefully not least, started THIS BLOG!

So that was our year - plus the usual upkeep of the animals and going to poultry sales and going to work every day and seeing our families now and then and trying to get enough sleep and spending way too much time on the internet goofing off. I feel a little tired now...

How was your year? What are your plans for 2014?


  1. That's an impressive list!
    The patio project really dresses up the house. That might be my favorite.
    It looks to me like you've earned the time to goof off on the internet. ;)

  2. Thanks! Looking forward to everything we want to do in 2014!