Sunday, December 07, 2008

24 Years

Tomorrow Kelli and I will have been married 24 years. Doesn't seem possible. We went out for a nice dinner earlier tonight to celebrate. We ate at a restaurant located in a historic 100 year old log building over looking the Eagle River. Our kind of place.

This morning I asked her if 24 years ago she'd ever imagined living on a farm in northern Wisconsin with 3 grown kids. Of course she hadn't and neither had I for that matter, but it was the best thing we ever did.

I probably never would have moved up here if it wasn't for her but, I'm sure I'd be out in the country someplace. Kelli's family originally came from northern WI, 100 miles west of where we are here. I'm blessed with a wife who loves and appreciates country life just as much as I do.

We spent alot of our early marriage driving around scouting around for land. We took alot of day trips and mini vacations with the sole purpose of finding land during those early years. Back then I was still into motorcycles and dreamed of one day having my own moto-cross track. But, it's funny how our lives change and what was once a major interest can fade over time. For me I think motorcycles and racing became an idol, that's why the Lord in His sovereignty and wisdom arranged for it to no longer be a part of my life.

Anything in our lives can become idols though and take preeminence over our relationship with the Lord. Even country living can hold too high of a place in our hearts if we're not careful. So I try to keep things in their proper perspective. I try not to think too highly of any material thing, be it land or animals or gardens or what have you. I don't want any thing on this earth to come between me and my relationship with God.

Cold weather seems to have come early this year. We've gotten several inches of snow this evening and the temperatures have been quite cold. Tonight on our way home from the restaurant it was slow going as the roads were snow covered and pretty slippery. The snow was mesmerizing as we drove into the heavily falling stuff. Last night it was supposed to be around 5 below zero, though I don't know if it actually got that low or not.

Last week we moved our remaining meat chickens to the green house and are using them to clean up the garden beds. We're finishing them in there. If I can help it, I'll never raise chickens this late in the year again. The main reason is it seems it's taking alot more feed to grow them in the cold. They must be burning off alot of calories just keeping warm.

We set up our butchering operation in the green house yesterday and I butchered up half dozen large broilers. Even though it was cloudy and cold it wasn't too bad in there since it was all out of the wind. I had two pots of hot water going, one for clean up and the other for dunking chickens. The heat from it actually made the frozen water droplets that were stuck to the plastic overhead start thawing out and at one point it seemed as if it was raining in there.

It is still an awesome thing going in the green house. Everything is still green in there, quite a contrast to the snowy frozen world outside.

We buried an old refrigerator in there as a mini root cellar. So far it is working well. In it we have potatoes, beets, carrots, rutabagas and parsnips. We learned about using old refrigerators or freezers from a book we have called Root Cellaring: Natural Cold Storage of Fruits & Vegetables . And in our business we come across those fairly often. At some point I might install a vent pipe because we noticed a little mold on a couple of the beets.

I'm sure glad to see fuel prices dropping but, it's hard to get too excited as everything still seems to be on the edge of collapse. People are breathing a sigh of relief over the drop in fuel prices but, I'm afraid it's too soon to celebrate. Better to keep a wary eye on everything.

Scrap metal prices and recyclables have dropped like a rock as well. So the costs at the landfill we use are going up. Just when I was thinking we might lower our prices other expenses are going up so we're just going to sit on it and wait to see what happens. That's all any of us can do, just wait to see what happens.

Well, I'd better sign off. It looks like tomorrow is going to be a tough day slipping around in the snow, so I'm going to have to get an early start.

Until Next Time


Blogger Lynn Bartlett said...

Belated Happy Anniversary greetings to you and Kelli! You are a bit ahead of Jim and I; our aniversary in Aug. was #20.

8:15 PM  
Blogger RL said...

Thanks Lynn! We started early. Kelli was 18 and I was 21 when we got married.

11:06 AM  

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