Off the pier

IMG_7248One of Jack’s favorite things to do here at the farm is to go fishing. There are lots of reeds and brush around the perimeter of our pond, so Jeremie has built this nice pier for us. But last year it was under water so much, the wood rotted away. IMG_7239In preparation for our family reunion, Jeremie bought wood and the kids helped him repair the deck. The kids exihibited great skills with the drill and saw! And they’ve been down there ever since, hoping for a biggun!  IMG_20170703_162729245


I never take my running water for granted. I never take hot water for granted. Because I have been without it. Not very long, mind you. But, I’m weak. A couple days without water turns me stark raving mad. A few weeks without hot water makes me crabby. And we have been having even more water issues lately. Sputtering. No pressure. Clunking noises. IMG_7526Thinking there was a hold in the well pipe, Jeremie and the boys pulled up all 100+ feet of pipe and yes, there was a leak. So they fixed that one. And the one that happened accidentally while it was laying on the ground, and we’ve been enjoying warm, if not hot, running water for days now. Hurray!IMG_7528

Cleaning hack

IMG_4621I picked up a playhouse free on Craigslist! It was a bit dirty and moldy. No problem! I’d seen this cleaning hack on Pinterest and tried it out. A drill and a round kitchen scrubbie brush. Works great! Benjamin loved scrubbing this house all up.IMG_4623 It’s funny, but Jeremie and I have such different standards of cleanliness. He is a “if you’re going to do it, do it right” kind of guy. I’m a “get-er-done” type of girl. Goodness, this house is going to be played with outside. It’s going to be muddy and dirty again in no time.IMG_4620 So we scrubbed for longer than I would’ve liked and less time than he would’ve liked and surprised Ruthie with it on her birthday. It’s been mild enough this January that the girls have played in it numerous times. It’s the perfect little addition to our fabulous mud kitchen set up.IMG_4642

IMG_3285We have been needing a new roof for a couple years now. After any storm our yard is strewn with shingles that have blown loose. And after the girls’ room started leaking, Jeremie decided it was time.IMG_3297 Roofing in the summer is hot. Roofing in the summer in Tn is even hotter.IMG_3327 We had some friends come help us. Without them I think Jeremie might have quit halfway through. IMG_3323The kids took some fun pictures of “jumping” off the roof. Sailing through the air like Mary Poppins. We only got the back half of the house done, so all this fun will have to be repeated again soon.IMG_3307 IMG_3292

1961 Ford 4000 Industrial Tractor, how many times can it break.

The green and black beast. SDC15133

It has a heavy duty front end loader (FEL) on it. It came with a 6′ bush hog. I paid $2200 for it including delivery about 5 years ago. It had really good tires on it. I thought it had a live pto when I bought it. It was advertised as a 1964 Ford, which would have had the live pto. It was actually a 1961 which has a transmission pto. Live pto’s are much better. I guess that is what I get for looking at it at night and not knowing anything about a tractor when I went to look at it. But I could not get anybody else that knew about tractors to come along. That is why I only wanted to spend about $2000 on my first tractor. Because I did not know, what I did not know. My next tractor will be 4 wheel drive because my property is so hilly.

I added rear hydraulics. I bought a 3 Point Hay spear.I adjusted the brakes some. The right side works some. The left side still needs work. I use the FEL as my brake of last resort.

I used it to pull up wood posts when I pulled up the fence for Mr Workman a few years ago. I blew the head gasket. So it sat for about a year. Then I took off the top end of the engine and had it ground flat. Put a new gasket in it. I repainted the engine parts that I took off to make them look nice and not rust. I put a new exhaust system on it that goes under the tractor so I would not get as many engine fumes on me when I used it. I got it started up, but it did not have as much power as it should.  I tried to lash the valves, but it takes a feel that comes from experience. So I decided to hire it out. I finally got it running enough to get it on a trailer to take to Mr. Hostetlers. I could not find anybody to come out and work on it.

Last fall I got the valves lashed and had it tuned up. He also replaced the pin that keeps the 3 point arms in the position mode. I picked it up from him and was driving it home. Then the freeze plug corroded and it was leaking coolant. It was in a really bad place but I got that fixed. This winter I moved a lot of hay with it. The gas shutoff was leaking when I had it in the open position. Common to this model tractor. This spring I got tilling done with it. Then it caught on fire. A rodent had built a nest in it and the gas shut off was leaking. Got the fire out. Put a new gas shutoff in it. Broke the fuel filter bowl. Got a new one. Got it running. I have been bush hogging a bunch. Got Mr. Charles pasture (keep our horses there) bush hogged. Had to replace the non-live pto spinner thing because the old one kept coming off. Moved the cows off the neighbors top field to the his bottoms so I could finish bush hogging that field. Got the tractor out in the early afternoon to bush hog. Noticed the gear box on the bush hog seemed to have worked itself loose. While I was under there trying to get the stump jumper off so I could tighten the bolts, I noticed the stump jumper had a crack in it. So I had to weld that. Welded another broken weld on the bush hog. Never got the stump jumper off, but was able to get a socket on the bolts I needed, with Tommy’s help and got the gear box tightened down. My welding is not great, so I make thick welds, which on the stump jumper I ended up having to grind mostly away so the blade would spin freely. Anyways by the time I got that all done, it was almost dark. The power steering leaks, so I put fluid in it and added some ATP reseal (great stuff, hope it fixes the leak). So I got about one pass around the field before I needed to turn on the headlights. Got the third pass around the field and I got drenched with water all of a sudden. And the water kept coming. Thought I drove through a huge puddle at first. My rear tire rim had burst. It had a 6″ x 6″ hole in it. They used to use calcium chloride water to fill tractor tires to give them weight and lower the center of gravity. The calcium chloride would corrode the metal pretty fast though. Now I think they use antifreeze in the water. So now I have to find a rim to get my tractor fixed. Pretty soon I will have run out of stuff to fix on the tractor. I can dream at least.

I have had the sheet metal off of it since I did the top end on the engine. I am hoping to repaint the tractor to its original yellow and red color scheme. Someday.720LoaderBrochure

2 started, 7 to go

Tommy got the Honda 200 and the Honda 350 running again. Still need the brakes fixed on them. The 350 is idling a little high also. Tommy did a great job and neither of them drove off by themselves this time. 🙂


What we’ve been up to…

timberlee 155

It’s quite the mess in there.

Working on the greenhouse. I feel like winter is just around the corner and I know I’ll be wanting to start some seeds in here soon. The animals have wreaked havoc on the siding so Jeremie has a lot of mending to do. And he is adding glass to the east side which should let it a lot more light. I have set a deadline for November 1 for it to be arranged such as that I can at least walk in there. Now that I’ve made that deadline public, perhaps there will be more pressure to complete the project? No nagging allowed.

Benja measuring boards for daddy.

Benja measuring boards for daddy.

Knitting again… I feel the nibbles of a knitting bug. Perhaps he only comes out in cooler weather? I love this little Milo sweater. This cute grey number is for a friend’s baby, hopefully arriving soon!


Helping out friends, selling soap at the farmer’s market. Girls manning the booth, so the mama’s could go to a “coffee meeting”.index

Maude, being a lazy bum! But we love her..timberlee 169Life has been a whirlwind of activity since we came home from camping. Friends, meeting, trips to Jackson, work, butchering, gardening. I feel like we jumped back into real life with 2 feet and a major splash!

Tractor started for the first time in about a year.

What a process it has been. It was a glorious sound. I have to change the oil. Change the coolant. Change the transmission fluid, and then I should be in business. I can’t wait to get it into productive work. The boys have been my helpers. They flip the switches and push the start button for me. They run and get me tools. I would not have gotten it done without them.

It is a glorious day. I am inspired to work on my old truck. But I have a few more projects to do before I will get to that one.


When things sit

they develop all sorts of problems.

I tested the spark on the tractor with Benjamin’s help. It was non-existant. I went to Kough Equipment and bought all the stuff to rebuild the distributor. Put it all on with Tommy’s help. Still no spark. I should have bought a new coil while I was there.

When I parked the tractor, there was nothing wrong with the spark. Sitting out in the elements for a year without being run is not good for mechanical things. So now I get to fix the spark so that I can try and get anything else fixed that may be wrong.

I went back to Kough and bought the coil today. Hopefully tomorrow I will get it installed.


What we’ve been up to

Peach Leather… one of our favorite ways to preserve peaches. Ingredients? Peaches (a whole blenderful) and a dollop of honey. peach leather

Blueberries! Picking berries with friends. One of my favorite things to do. And visiting with our crazy friend, Mr Tom. This year, he sent us home with a small deep freezer. Isn’t he sweet? The berries were not the best this year. Usually we can pick about 12 gallons in an hour. This year it took us almost 2. He said with all this rain we’ve been having the berries are growing to fast and the skins are splitting. And he’s battling birds. He doesn’t want to spray and poison the berries and I can appreciate that 🙂berries 005

Installing a gate opener. No one will appreciate this more than Tommy. He is our resident gate opener. Numerous times he has been awoken from a deep sleep in the car to have to brave the elements, weather (ha!) it be rain or snow, to open the gate manually. Now with a mere touch of a button the gate smoothly opens itself. Except that with all the rain the post the gate is attached to has shifted and the gate started dragging on the ground, not a week after it’s installation. And except that someone accidentally washed the remote opener through the laundry. But I am sure after all that is fixed, it will be wonderful, lol! Jeremie went to town today and I was stuck at home because the gate doesn’t open manually anymore. I had to go out the side gate into woods to even take the kids for a walk in the stroller!gate 001