Healthy Living

Homestead News

Spring is in the air here on our homestead. We left the ice age and things are popping. We are excited to welcome this season.

On February 24th, we had 2 baby goats born! There was 1 doe and 1 buck born to Windy. Then on February 25th, 2 more babies were born. This time we had 2 bucks. These were born to Sophie, who is also Windy’s mother. Both births were amazing. Everything went well and their timing was great for us to be home and available. It was also a huge blessing that the births were after the ice storm.

Preparation is also in progress for planting the garden. Potatoes were planted on February 27th. That is almost 2 weeks late. They are supposed to be planted on the 14th, but the ice storm started that day and the garden is muddy. We are doing more raised beds this year and planning for even more next year.

Spring is always exciting with new life beginning, whether it’s baby goats or flowers and garden plants. I think this is my favorite season.

Until next time, have a healthy and blessed week!

Healthy Living

Ice Storm 2021

As I type this post, we are coming out of the worst ice storm anyone I know has ever experienced. We don’t get much snow in southwest Mississippi. We get even less ice. I remember one ice storm as a child, but it was nothing like this. So here’s our story.

Two weeks ago we began seeing snow in our weather forecast. That was not unusual, but by the time the snow is to arrive, the weather has changed. As that week progressed, the snow didn’t leave the forecast and freezing rain was added. Then sleet was added. Things looked rough for Monday, February 15th. We canceled everything and prepared to be shut in for the day. We were praying we wouldn’t lose electricity since we’re total electric except for our fireplace insert. We also have a well for water, so if we lose electricity we also lose water.

The sleet began to fall Monday around 2:00am and came down until around noon. The ground was solid white. It looked like snow, but it wasn’t. It was crunchy ice. It was so hard that we couldn’t build a snowman. Monday evening it rained more and the temperature got down to fourteen degrees or so that night. We didn’t lose electricity.

Backing up to Sunday night, it was already very cold and raining. Our water stopped working and we were like, oh boy, here we go. My dad went to check the well and was able to fix that problem. Something had frozen either open or closed and was preventing the water from flowing. Thankfully, that was fixed easily enough.

Tuesday was good. We had some flurries, but nothing super challenging. It was just cold.

Then came Wednesday and another round of sleet and freezing rain. You may wonder what the difference in the two is, I did too. Sleet falls as ice and bounces off light lines and such, falling to the ground. Freezing rain falls as liquid and accumulates on trees and power lines and stuff. So we got both most of the day Wednesday. Our lights began to flicker around 3:30pm or 4:00pm. We hustled around and got supper and I got a bath and washed my hair like a smart person. Lol. Around 5:00pm or so, we were plunged into darkness. We lit lamps and used flashlights. We had the fire in the insert for warmth. We had a cold night, but thank God for lots of blankets!

Thursday morning my dad got our small generator out and we ran the fan on our insert and charged our phones and flashlights. We went to my grandparents’ house about thirty miles away to get baths and some homemade soup that afternoon.

Thursday morning mom and I went in to town to try to find something to eat. We wanted some chicken. We sat in line at the chicken joint for nearly thirty minutes only to be told they were out of chicken. Bummer! So we joined the extremely long line at the burger joint and waited around forty-five minutes or more. People were coming in from another road trying to get in this line. Some nice people would let them in, but the guy in front of us was a redneck jerk and wouldn’t let anyone in. He and another guy had words, but he still wouldn’t let him in. Mom did let him in and he kept thanking us and waving. We finally got to the window to pay for our food. The lady asked, did we get such and such and we said yes. She handed mom the receipt and said, “The guy ahead of you paid for your food.” We were blown away. Mom leaned out the window and thanked him and he was still waving when he left. I was like, there are still some nice people in this world.

We played the board game aggravation every night by lantern light. It was cold, but we slept well. Friday was more of the same. We went to try to find food and found some pretty quickly that day. Saturday we went back to my grandparents’ for baths and such. Saturday evening we went back to the chicken joint and this time they had chicken, but no side items. We went everywhere looking for a hot meal. We finally found something at a fish place. I don’t eat fish, but they did have chicken strips. Saturday night we went to bed for our fourth night with no electricity. At 6:30am or so Sunday morning dad cranked the generator as he had been every morning. Around 7:30am, my electric heater in my room came on. I jumped up yelling woohoo! We have electricity! Our wonderful neighbor had pulled strings and personally escorted the power trucks to our road to fix the problem. Thank you Lucy and thank you MEPA! MEPA pitched in to help our power company, SWMEPA.

Then the part began wondering if the well would work or if it was frozen. My dad checked it and found some busted pipes. He was able to get what he needed to fix it and by 1:00pm or so we had water! We survived with minor problems!

That small generator was a life saver. I named it Bessie. She could run for three hours on a tank of gas. Then she would sputter and die. I would say, Bessie needs a refill. Bessie is around thirty years old. She brought three households through hurricane Catrina and saved our freezers. Now she brought us through four days of no electricity. We would have been mighty cold without Bessie. Hats off to her!

Needless to say, it was quite a week. Now it is beautiful Spring weather and only a patch of ice or two leaves any trace of what we have come through. We learned some lessons. We will prepare regardless of the possibility of the forecast changing. We will purchase a large and powerful generator that can run the well. We will have more wood cut. And on and on I could go. So that’s our ice storm story.

Until next time, have a blessed and healthy week!

Healthy Living

Head First

This week I want to talk about how thoughts and words affect us. I will approach this topic from both a physical and spiritual standpoint. They go hand in hand.

What we think often becomes what we say. The Bible teaches that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. What comes forth from our mouths is a clear reflection of what’s inside. The wise man Solomon said, as a man thinks in his heart, so is he. The great Apostle Paul said, I think myself happy… So all through the Bible we find references to our thoughts and words and how they affect us.

Most people are familiar with the story of David and Goliath in the Bible. However, most probably don’t know that Goliath’s family were soothsayers. This means they were supposed to be able to see the future. In this case, they used insulting words to intimidate the Israelites. Goliath taunted and insulted them to the point they were cowering in fear. When David showed up they were hiding while Goliath yelled his insults. David had some background experiences that gave him courage to face such a tirade fearlessly. He had already faced a lion and a bear and won. His head and heart were in the right place and the taunts of the soothsayer didn’t make him flinch. And we know how that story turned out.

It is important what we think and what words come out of our mouth. We have the ability to speak life or death. We can think and speak ourselves sick or well. It all depends on what we choose to believe and dwell on. When a doctor makes a diagnosis, we can accept it as our fate, or we can reject it. I personally do not want a diagnosis spoken over me. I reject that. I do not speak of disease as “mine.” I hear people say things like “my cancer,” “my diabetes,” “my allergies/intolerances,” etc. Your body may have a sickness, but please don’t take ownership of that sickness by claiming it as yours. Rise above that and think and speak yourself well.

One more Bible reference in closing. Jesus was crucified on Calvary. Calvary was also known as Golgotha. Golgotha means, the place of a skull. Even in the crucifixion the skull, or head, was referenced. Jesus died so our minds could be free from tormenting thoughts. We can be transformed by the renewing of our minds (Romans 12:2). Jesus bore our griefs and sorrows. He took it all on Himself when He hung on the cross on Calvary, the place of a skull.

I encourage all of us to get our head right first. Learn to think right. Our thinking affects everything. Head first!

Until next time, have a healthy and blessed week!

Healthy Living

It Takes Sunshine & Rain to Thrive

Over the past few weeks we have been discussing how to deal with negativity and how to have true joy in our lives. Today we will look at this from a different angle.

While discussing the weather with my friend, we were both commenting on how tired we are of the rainy gloomy weather we are having. We have had several consecutive days of rain and several cloudy days. The past 2 days have been sunny and beautiful. The sunshine just lifts the spirit. I love to just soak it up.

In my friend’s and my conversation we commented on how we need the rain, but we don’t care for it. Then it occurred to me that we have to have both rain and sunshine for growth. Nothing on Earth can grow with just rain, or with just sun. It takes both to produce growth.

There is less growth on the top of a mountain than in the valley. Do you see lush green pastures on top of a mountain? No. You usually see rock and spindly vegetation. However, in the valley you do see the beautiful green pastures, streams and thriving life.

Psalm 23 tells us that the Lord leads us beside still waters and makes us lie down in green pastures. It goes on to say that if we walk through the valley of the shadow of death we don’t have to fear. God is with us. That mountain that doesn’t promote thriving life can shadow the beautiful valley, but God is with us through it all.

We have to have both rain and sunshine, mountains and valleys, deserts and well watered places. To everything there is a season and a time to every purpose under heaven (Ecclesiastes 3).

As we go forward in 2021, with all its uncertainties, we must go forward understanding that we have to have the rain and the sun. We can face it all knowing that God is with us, leading us every step of the way. He is, and always will be, in complete control. We can trust Him fully

Until next time, have a healthy and blessed week!