Life of a Farm Blog

farm blog, farming blog, country blog, country living blog, livestock blog, rural lifestyle blog

Greetings

Hello! Greetings from Pine Knot Kentucky. We are in the rolling hills of Kentucky where the plateau meets the mountains. It is a truly beautiful place to live. My name is Joel Combs and I am the 10th generation to farm the 170 acres that we call home. I have 3 children – Kaylee, Garett, and Mattie, ages 5, 7, and 9. We live in an authentic log home built by my grandfather and his brothers shortly before WWII.
Our little farm consists of 5 horses, 40 or so registered Boer goats, and Red Star chickens. I do custom hay work, till gardens, & mow with my 03′ Mahindra 6000 4×4. We sell Farm Fresh Brown Eggs & Hay in Rolls and Square bales. We also raise much of our own pork, beef, chicken, and garden vegetables.

Most folks wonder why anyone would do something like this blog. For us the answer is a simple one. Too many kids today don’t know where the things we eat truly come from. Our kids have seen how our food was raised and how the process works.
Life’s lessons are plentiful on a farm.

This whole concept is to show all about our way of life. The amount of work that goes into it, the tools we use to do the work, the lessons we all learn, and the smiles and tears we all share. Thanks for reading and I hope you’ll check back here frequently as we’ll be posting pictures and stories of what’s happening in our neck of the woods.


26 Responses to “Greetings”

  1. Barbara Says:

    I would like to say that I enjoyed the greeting, but it was a little hard to read since the writing was so small. Maybe you could work on that. Your farm sounds like a sweet place to live.
    Barbara

  2. Brenda Says:

    Howdy from Texas! I say you mow with a Mahindra 6000 but the picture looks more like a 15 series. You must have more than one tractor.
    Brenda (dealer in Crockett Texas)

  3. joelw Says:

    Thanks for your responses! We’ll try to work on the print size so folks can see it better. I am glad readers are getting some enjoyment from our blog. The 6000 is my only tractor. I sold the Ford and traded in a MF 135. I figured with a new tractor and warranty I would not need the others. There is a world of difference in this 6000 and my older tractors. I am amazed at some of the things I have been able to accomplish with the 4wd and loader.
    Everyone please check back often as we will be adding pictures and posts atleast weekly.

  4. Robb Simer Says:

    Just read your posting. Sounds like a nice place. I’m 61 years old and saving to get a place for me and my son. My wife says I’m too old, but I don’t think I am.

  5. Vic Says:

    Thanks for sharing your story. I have purchased a Mahindra for my wife and I. We have 120 acres down in Arkasas. I am from Australia, and I am a city boy who wants to live the life you talk about Joel. We will be moving down there from Kansas City next year. The land we own ajoins my wife family farm that has been in her family since 1863. Thanks agan for sharing. I will keep looking to your blog.
    Vic & Linda Cooney

  6. Mark & Anne Says:

    Hi
    Loved your blog.
    We have 4 mares and a filley.
    We are in coastal plains and only have pasture grass one time a year in the spring.
    Hoping to buy a Mahindra soon. Getting by with a garden tractor for now.
    My wife is a horse breeder/trainer. Lots of work at our age 60′s.
    Our families came from Ohio and Pennsylvania – all in farming since the American Revolution. You might say its genetic!
    We have 2 Border Collies “Vickie” & “Blackie”.
    Keep up your good work!

    A&M Ranch
    Winchester, CA.

  7. dave Says:

    really enjoy your blog i have 10 acres with a mahindra 4110 and i enjoy every minute of using it keep up with the blog, like i said i really enjoy it

    thanks dave

  8. Nancy Says:

    Hi Joel,
    Just found your blog today and I’m really enjoying it. I also live in KY, but I don’t know where Pine Knot is. My husband and I live on 44+ acres and have 3 boys. You should check out our HomesteadBlogger site. We have over a thousand homesteaders blogging there and you would make a great addition!
    ~Nancy
    http://www.HomesteadBlogger.com
    Visit with us on the front porch!

  9. joelw Says:

    Nancy,
    Thanks for the invite to your site. I’ll keep it in mind. Things are very busy here and I barely have time to do what I do. This week was a choice betwen going to work like I am supposed to or getting in my hay. Easy choice for me, I’ll choose the farm over the factory anyday. Pine Knot is just north of the Tennessee state line on hwy 27. Also just south of Somerset Ky and Lake Cumberland. Quiet little town in McCreary county.
    Hope you enjoy the blog! Keep coming back.

  10. Shirley Says:

    Hello, this looks like fun reading….. I am going to suggest to my Grandson who loves anything about a farm to come here for some interesting reading…. He is 11 now..

    thanks for sharing your lives

    shirley from Kansas

  11. Jim K Says:

    Joel,
    I really like your blog, reminds me of when I was younger.
    Too many family farms are disappearing to the snatch and grab developers of farm land.
    Good luck with the future and take good care of the land your family has owned for 10 generations.

  12. Bill Lee Says:

    Hi Joel,

    I just found your blog.

    I’m a 47 year old Engineer living in San Jose, Ca.
    I moved here after completing my Masters at Bowling Green Kentucky.

    I grew up on a 640 acre farm outside Picayune, Mississipi that had been in the family sine 1863. My dad sold while I was in high school and my heart has been broken ever since.

    Sometimes people are very short sighted and do not know what a great life farmers enjoy.

    I pray that I can find a nice farm again to raise my son. I do not want him to only know the city life. I’m looking back in KY or TN to find a really nice 100 + acre farm to grow old.

    Thank you so much for having this blog. THis has really make me very happy and also reminds me how happy I was going up with pigs, chickens, horses, cows and all the other farm animals.

    Best REgards,
    Bill Lee

  13. Erica Hoffman Says:

    Hello,
    I’m going to use your blog in my AP US History class to help students visualize what life is like for the small farmer in America today. We are discussing Populism and the Farmer’s Aliance from the late 19th/20th Century. Thanks for the postings.

    Sincerely,
    Erica Hoffman
    Fox High School, Arnold MO

  14. Paul Morehead Says:

    Hello Joel. I found your journal this morning, and have been reading for the past 90 minutes. You have such an easy-going style that makes your writing so readable. Please keep it up. Family photo albums are nice, but your thoughts and intentions at this time in your life will be treasured by your children and future grandchildren later on.

    My wife and I miss our own Kentucky roots. The military took us away and we ended up settled down in Virginia, not far from DC. We so much want to move away from here, but both daughters are married, living here, and our 1st granddaughter is on the way. Although we’re both two generations from the farm, we have those memories. Most of them good.

    Dad still lives in Louisville, and my wife’s family is in Lexington. Nancy’s sister has a lake house not far from you, just south of Somerset.

    Grandpa sure kept me busy. I won’t miss working Tobacco, but it was the only thing he made money at. Now hay was something else. Kinda relaxing. Square-baling is all we knew. It would take both my cousin and me to lift one onto the wagon. And working the loft. You knew you had done some work at the end of the day. I miss that old man.

    Although you may not realize it, working your family’s acerage and making a better place for your children is very noble and unselfish, and a good example for the kids.

    Wishing you and your family the best,
    I’ll be checking back in

    Paul Morehead
    Chantilly, VA

  15. joelw Says:

    Paul,
    I’m glad you like the writing. I too have family that ended up in Va via DC. My uncle Eldon is an economist for the USDA in DC. I could never make it in DC.
    Ky has a way of hanging onto you and lingering in your thoughts. My children are amazed at how I am always glad to be back in these hills after we’ve been traveling.
    Tobacco was the mainstay for so many farmers in KY. I hated to see the quota system go. Especially the way they cut and cut before finally buying it out. Might not have been such a bad deal if they had left it as it was and bought it out. A lot of farmers just quit as soon as they cut out the price support. A few have held on via contract growing. I too spent a lot of time picking up after an old square baler. I don’t know what was more work the square bales or cutting the tobacco. Almost all this type labor is done by migrant workers these days. Leaves me struggling with how to feel about immigration. Here there are so many people who have never and will never work due to the social and welfare systems we have in place. I can sure relate to missing your grandpa. It’s like living with ghosts here on the farm because I don’t believe there is a spot on this 170 acres that I can stand and not remember my grandpa and I or my uncle Pete and I doing something. The folks from the WWII era truly were our greatest generation. That means all the folks who lived through and contributed in some way be they 15 or 50 at the time.
    Sometimes I wonder if I’m doing the right thing for my children by hanging on here. I geuss only time will tell. Thanks for reading!

  16. michelle Says:

    just found your blog…enjoyed reading so far…want to go back and see what i’ve missed…i live at the beach, so no farm or tractor for me…though there is lots of farming in the area…i can appreciate your way of life…i’m a tree-huggin hippie at heart…love that you’re so thoughtful to your animals…you seem like an interesting person and a caring, devoted father who wants something better and different for his family…i wish you the best and look forward to my next reading!!…michelle in n.j.

  17. joelw Says:

    michelle,
    Glad you enjoy it. Too many folks don’t appreciate the role that plants (especially trees) play for us. Geuss I’m a tree hugger too. It killed me to see the timber go. Unfortunately when we bought this place from my great uncles heirs they sold the timber down to 12″ at the stump. On the 45 acres that was my grandpas there is plenty of trees. I’ve been approached many times about cutting them, but I’m just not interested. Hopefully I’ll be able to do a real timber stand improvement here on this 125 acres and leave a good stand for the kids. Isn’t it a shame it only takes a few minutes to undo what it took mother nature years to do. Thanks for reading, keep checking back!

  18. Diane Says:

    Hello Joel:

    I loved reading your weblog. We used to go to Lincoln Co., KY every 4th weekend for church at The Rose of Sharon Church. I live in Grenup Co., KY and was raised on a farm. I am 54 and we don’t do any farming now, but I am raising 3 grandsons which keeps me just as busy. You are doing the right thing with your children and you make me proud to be a Kentuckian. I feel confident that your land will be farmed by 11th, 12th and so on…
    Keep it up!

  19. joelw Says:

    Diane,
    I hope you’re right about the 11th, 12th, and so on farming here. That is if that’s what they want to do. I hope what I’m doing is having a positive influence on the kids, although I’ve got to admit sometimes I wonder if it’s worth it. Farming isn’t easy and it’s not really profitable anymore either. Thanks for reading and keep checking back.

  20. Debbie Says:

    Joel,

    Wow! Just found your blog and had to read all of it! My husband is the 5th generation farmer, Glasco Kansas, and our family is the 4th generation to live in our house. We farm about 3,000 acres of corn, milo, wheat, and alfalfa.

    We also have a 50 head cow-calf operation. My 15 year old daughter, Katie, is in 4-H, so Sunday we added 3 steers to her collection. She is starting a small herd to help her pay for college when the time comes.

    I also have a 9 year old daughter, Jacy, who is going to take a heifer to the fair this year, and our 7 year old son Lane will have bucket calf.

    The only other animals we have are a dog and a cat. The kids would love a horse, but we don’t have anyplace to keep one.

    I can relate to your problem of broken down machinery. At 9pm last night I was helping Matt fix the sprayer out in the field. The cable that folds the arm of the sprayer snapped off when he was folding it up to move fields.

    Matt is fertilizing our wheat this week, and our hay looks pretty good. He didn’t have Katie around to help this past week, as she went on a ski trip to Winter Park in Colorado with her HS youth group.

    This is spring break for Glasco school, so the kids have been home driving me crazy all week. Thank GOD for my twin sister, who lives in Glasco. Her kids (Kobey 15 and Lauren 14) are spending this week with their father in Colorado, so she has some time on her hands.

    I am trying to finish up my BA in Business Management. I have 2 classes to finish, and only need to write a paper to finish them. Problem with living in rural Kansas, there are no major colleges near enough to get your degree.

    I absolutely love this Blog, and am going to recommend it to our grade school teachers. My kids are one set of the few farm kids we have in our school, and a lot of the kids do not realize what we do. I belive your blog will help them understand.

    Keep on Blogging!

  21. Dawn Says:

    I too love the farm life. I have a six acre mini-farm in Cerulean, KY. Cows, chickens, geese, ducks and a dog. There is nothing better! It was too much for me to farm alone and work in the city, so I’m in the process of trying to sell my 1925 farm house. I just found your blog and am excited to read more. Thank you so much for sharing your family with all of us!

  22. Aine Says:

    I cannot express how much I admire your drive to raise your children on your family farm! While I unfortunately grew up myself in the city, I have spent the last several years living and working in the ‘soft fruit’ belt of Ontario, Canada and have really noticed the vast difference between city kids and farm kids. I truly believe that by choosing to raise your children on the farm you will give them an appreciation for hard work and the joy of seeing what comes from it in the end as well as a sense of pride in what they do. It seems to me that most children from the city don’t learn this until they are adults (if at all).

    Soon I will be returning to the city to work on a teaching degree and would like nothing more than to run a small hobby farm on the side (That is, if I can figure out how to start. Not so easy from the ground up I’m told).

    I wish you the very best of fortune with your farm and hope that you spend many happy years there with your kids.

    ~Anastasia
    ~age 23
    ~Beamsville, Ontario, Canada

  23. Brooke Says:

    WOW!! I don’t know where to start!! I have read ALL your replys to your original blog. I had to stop and start taking notes, LOL!! I am a “city” girl, ha ha at age 45!! I live in Chino, CA and have a quarter horse boarded in Norco (AKA Horsetown USA)and a Miniature Horse I have lent to a friend for her older gelding. “Harley” keeps her gelding running and young (he is 27). He thinks he is a BIG horse. My DREAM!!! Is to own about OK don’t LAUGH!!! About 2 ACRES!!! Enough to have my horse, an arena, hot walker, some chickens and a small “petting” zoo!! Like I said..I am a city girl. I do NOT want to see my food WALKING or TALKING, LOL!!! I have experianced it…and I don’t have a problem with it as long as I do NOT pet the cow, pig, goat, turkey (which I get every year from my horse shoer! I won’t buy a frozen “chemical” turkey ever again!) It’s funny, his daughter Katie…she always asks me….Brooke, do you want to come see “Henry”??? He is your Thanksgiving turkey!! I just say, sorry Katie, NO, I do not want to see my FOOD walking around!!!! UGH! But, because she has always been raised with her “food” in her backyard, neither she or her brother have any trouble with it! It is a whole different world! I totally commend you and what you are doing for your kids!! It DOES make them a better person…..they KNOW where things come from. What it takes to grow, take care of and unfortunatly even the bad side of life when an animal, cow, horse or whatever dies before its time. It effects the WHOLE family! Financially AND emotionally. Do NOT ever doubt yourself!! Your children look happy and healthy….what more could a parent ask??
    Well, I didn’t get to ALL my “notes” but, maybe another time……….I look forward to more of your blogs……
    Keep SMILING!!! Takes less muscles, LOL……
    Brooke

  24. Tom Says:

    Hey,
    I think what you are doing with this blog is GREAT. And I am glad that it is successful. I just checked this out today and was reading a few stories. Thanks for this site.

  25. Jay Says:

    I grew up on a farm in georgia – my wife is a city girl. All she can talk about is wanting to start a farm (\”just some cute sheep and some ducks\” she says). She has no idea how much work goes into a working farm. I hope she will read some of this and realize that getting a farm as a hobby (she calls it a hobby farm) is not like buying a tennis racket that you use twice and then stays in the closet untouched.

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