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Cold

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Finally some warmer weather here in Pine Knot. It has been much colder than normal lately. I’m not sure some of you would consider teens at night cold, but the average temp here is nowhere near that. That means us farmers aren’t really setup to handle it. Everyday this week I had to beat the ice out of the water trough for the pigs so I could give them fresh water. The chicken fountains were frozen too, so I had to lug them out to the water spicket and use running water to thaw them and then refill them on a daily basis. The pond where the goats and cows drink was frozen over too. So I had to walk to the pond and break the ice away so they could drink. Same thing at the other pond where the horses drink. I’m happy to report that the 6000 started with no problems in this cold snap. I’m relieved because I was sure I would have to replace the battery after letting it run dead. I put out more hay for all the animals and threw a square bale in to the pigs so they could bed in it. The cold sure leaves me wishing for a cab tractor like the 7010 cab. I’ve got goats that have to play king of the hay roll every time you set one out. The kids would stand at the window and watch them while drinking hot cocoa. They say goats are so silly.

We are set to tour a local commercial hen house Feb 13th. I heard from a friend that a local grower had lost a whole house of birds. Not quite sure how that will play out. I questioned the production manager about it and he assured me they were disposed of due to salmonella. He says it was not the growers fault. He claims I have nothing to worry about – the company has only cancelled one grower’s contract since they started here and that was after a year of warnings and gross negligence. The county agent here called me with a phone number of a friend of his who quit extension service to become a grower. He said this fella will tell me the truth about the business. He also assured me that no one who has gone into business with Cobb here in the county regrets it. We’ll see! I’m going to investigate all avenues of it before making a final decision.

Since it turned cold, Kenny (the contractor who’s working on the house) moved inside and replaced the kitchen countertop. I’ve posted a few new photos, click here to take a look. He also started on the trim in the addition and did all the drywall and painted. My younger brother John Jr put down some nice hardwood floor in the added room. Everything is coming together nicely. We have ordered all new windows for the house. They are supposed to be in today. The last couple weeks we’ve spent in the double-wide leave me longing for the house and honestly kind of regreting choosing the double-wide over the house. Nothing wrong with this place it just doesn’t feel like home. At the log house I had basically an apartment in the loft. I felt comfortable there. Small enough I didn’t ever feel lonely, but big enough I never felt crowded. Plus the kids are spending more time at the house with my mom than they are here. They kept their rooms there and my loft room is empty. As crazy as it sounds I have considered asking my ex-wife if she would want to rent the double-wide. At least that way we could both be close to the kids all the time and I know she would take care of it. Kind of crazy to go back to living with your parents at 33, but hey whatever works!

Unfortunately my Chevy truck is on the fritz. The stupid thing will just die on you for no reason. It may go a mile or 30 miles then usually starts right back. I suspect it is the PMD (Pump Mounted Driver) on the injector pump. $389 new, wow that hurts! I’m seriously considering changing brands when I get it fixed. I have always been a GM guy, but I don’t think I will ever own another GM diesel truck. That kind of puts me in a bind though because I absolutely worship Trans Ams and I can’t see driving a Ford or Dodge truck and a completely opposite brand car. I’m sure Mustangs are fun to drive like TAs, but I like the T-tops and 6 speed tranny in the TA. Not to mention that thing still runs great at 187,000 miles.

We are in kind of a pickle at work. The dam (Wolf Creek Dam) that holds back the lake (Lake Cumberland) we get all our water from is leaking and the Corp of Engineers is lowering the water level below the intake pipes to reduce pressure on the dam. It has the whole community in an uproar because they depend on the lake for so much. Well it’s almost time to make the charcoal so I better go……….Stay safe!


17 Responses to “Cold”

  1. Kevin Says:

    Joel, Family & Friends
    Cold is relative to where you live. Here in MO, about an hour E of Kansas City, we’ve only had a couple of days above freezing since the first of the year, and lots of nights in the single digits with negative windchill. We have been blessed with good weather here for a few years and got spoilt. Just put on plenty of layers, and just waddle like a duck! That’s what I do!
    Renting the double wide to the ex might be a good idea, but I’m not sure why you’re not going to stay in the old log house. You’ve already sunk a lot of time and money into renovating it and it looks like once you’re done it will be as nice as the new house. I did the same thing, more or less. I built a new house in 1999 because our old house was falling down around our ears. In 2003, after the house had been vacant for three years, I did a refinance on the new house and took some cash out to remodel the old house. When we tore into it we found more work than what I anticipated, but I had planned on a down to the studs tear out. $60,000 later the house was done, and frankly I think it is as nice as my new one. I haven’t had troubles finding renters, just find ones that have been worth a plug nickel. Hopefully you won’t have that problem.
    It hit me that if you are like me and have a number of windows/sash that are in good shape you can take them and use them to make a small greenhouse. I’ve thought about it and will tackle that sometime in the future. The greenhouse will let you get a start on starting seeds for your garden, plus you can start some extra for selling as transplantable seedlings at the farmer’s market. A lot of the time you will have a hard time competing head to head with the larger retailers if you have the standard varieties, instead go with some of the harder to find heirloom varieties, or do what some of the greenhouses are doing here. Market the plants as almost ready to produce! What they are doing are using one gallon or larger pots and selling single tomato plants. By doing it that way, and starting the plants in January/February, they are ready to put into the garden in April and producing by June! Oh, by the way, you can modify the goat shelter idea and use clear plastic if you don’t have enough sash/windows. You can also use the sash as covers for cold frames. (4 or more square bales set on black plastic put onto the ground and the sash put on top of the bales to serve as a cover.)
    Well, I’ve rambled on a little to long, again! Take care and just keep at it! Eventually it will all come together!

  2. KK_f Says:

    Think about buying my ‘avant-garde’ novel. Thus, you shall receive enlightenment from thy inner self how to proceed (with 24/7 sardonic satire, of course). It’s a win/win situation, dude. God bless you with discernment.

  3. Hillbilly-Willy Says:

    As John Denver once sang “Thank God I’m a Country Boy”!

    I bet he never broke ice for the cows when it was 20 degrees outside in the Panhandle of Texas with the wind howling at 40 miles per hour and nothing between you and the north pole but a barbed wire fence and three strands of it was down.

    10-4 Willy

  4. joelw Says:

    Kevin,
    The money to remodel the log house is coming from my parents. My dad wants to retire again in a couple years and live out his time here. My mother was brought home from the hospital to the log house. She too wants to live out her time here. My options now after agreeing that they should live there are stay in the double-wide or live there with them. Really wouldn’t be much different than the way it was in the past. My mother has spent a great deal of time with us all along. I’ve seen the kids less since coming down here to stay. They must still feel like that’s home because they spend alot of time with their nana.
    I’ve saved every window I’ve come across with the intention of building a cabin or planting shed or something. I thought about making some cold boxes with the fold out type windows. I found one in the barn that’s a double and one will come from the bath that’s a single. I’ve thought of buying or building a greenhouse, but just never have the time to keep up with everything I’ve got going now.

    Hillbilly,
    I know what you’re saying. Seems I find myself out in the elements all the time thinking somehow this is not how I had this pictured.
    I resemble the fence description. I’m constantly working on the fence. Last year I put up a really long pull of woven wire by the road. It was so pretty and straight and I’d taken great pains to get it perfect by the road. Well after about a week someone ran through it with a truck. It’s not so pretty any more!

  5. Kevin Says:

    Ain’t that the truth! It seems like you just get done doing a fencing job and either some fool can’t keep his vehicle on the road or some wild critter has to try their hand at tearing it down! We totally refenced the perimeter and cross fencing on the adjoining 40 acres, that we used for pasture and feedlot many years ago, when my dad’s partner decided to bring some steers up from New Mexico that his brother couldn’t get a good price on. Well, they hauled in that possum belly and we turned out. The first thing they did was raise their tails and run straight through the corral fencing (2 x 8 native pecan that was seasoned over 100 years. We had to use an electric drill to make pilot holes before we could nail it up!) and then through the electric and 5 strand barbwire into the pasture. They didn’t stop until they were on the far side of the quarter section! We spent the rest of that year just repairing and running down strayed cows, because those critters weren’t used to seeing a man on foot! They had always been worked on horseback and fed from a horse drawn wagon. They didn’t have a clue that humans walked on two legs, and they didn’t want to have any part of us! Take care, and try to stay warm and dry!

  6. joelw Says:

    Kevin,
    I hear you. I bought a cow cheap at the sale in Somerset Ky a few summers ago. That thing almost got away from us at the sale. We finally got her home only to have her jump the fence and never did find her.

  7. babelouise Says:

    The poor animals! Let them in the house and give them their owns blankets and pillows! It’s too cold outside or in the barn for them!

    I would be wearing shorts in KY! It was 28 today and it felt warm here in Pgh. School was closed 2 days last week because of minus zero temperatures!

  8. threecollie Says:

    Came across your blog while surfing around. I will check back later when I have more time to read. Very interesting…

  9. darima Says:

    I’m from Mongolia and i tried to start same job as yours. Farmer -it is almost new branch in Mongolia.So I tried to contact to some one to got information

  10. mikeg Says:

    We had the same problem with our ’96 Chevy. The shop wanted to replace the pump @ $1100. We did some research and realized it was probably the PMD and so bought a remote mount (it’s the engine heat that kills these) PMD from Heath Diesel. They were higher than the stock part but they come with a 7yr replacement warranty and an excellent reputation. Also, it should last longer than the stock part as you’re moving it into cool air. We’ve had no issues since putting it in and gained HP and a slight bit of mileage with the replacement.

    HTH,
    Mike

  11. joelw Says:

    mikeg,
    Thanks for the info. The 6.5 engine has almost turned me away from GM products. I’ll check out Heath.

  12. Ms Stella Says:

    Was playing cards and this site just popped up now it is 4 am and in still reading oh my im cold now in michigan but it has been a very cold winter. We are trying to get a internet business started.If u need any thing at a good price ck out Ebay it is a price driven aution site so u can find some real cheap stuff on there. i havent been able to sell a darn thing yet. But yet to an auction house today and got some neat old things we have to clean up and put up for bid, sorry no trucks though. But if u like looking at cool cars they have those too. And it is perfectly all right to have mom and dad around for you and the kids, because NOONE but God will ever love you and your kids more and help you to take care of them family is so important sure miss my mom and dad. Hey what u going to do with the puppies. I did drive all the way to davenport Iowa to get a farm dog once but she is gone now too. She was a natural hearder took me to the frig to get her food when i would get home from work LOL Have a great day.
    Ms Stella

  13. Ms Stella Says:

    Was playing cards and this site just popped up now it is 4 am and in still reading oh my im cold now in michigan but it has been a very cold winter. We are trying to get a internet business started.If u need any thing at a good price ck out Ebay it is a price driven aution site so u can find some real cheap stuff on there. i havent been able to sell a darn thing yet. But went to an auction house today and got some neat old things we have to clean up and put up for bid, sorry no trucks though. But if u like looking at cool cars they have those too. And it is perfectly all right to have mom and dad around for you and the kids, because NOONE but God will ever love you and your kids more and help you to take care of them family is so important sure miss my mom and dad. Hey what u going to do with the puppies. I did drive all the way to davenport Iowa to get a farm dog once but she is gone now too. She was a natural hedrder took me to the frig. to get her food when i would get home from work LOL Have a great day.
    Ms Stella

  14. joelw Says:

    Ms Stella,
    Good luck on the business. I buy from Ebay all the time. I know what you mean about mom and dad I’m certainly lucky to have them. Don’t know what we’ll do with all the pups, probably end up giving them away if the kids will let me.

  15. Ivan Says:

    Hi, my name is disman-kl, i like your site and i ll be back ;)

  16. joelw Says:

    disman-kl,
    Glad you like the site. Thanks for reading! Check back soon!

  17. cumberland new trucks Says:

    cumberland new trucks…

    Do you have a newsletter to sign up to?…

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