It’s Been So Long

I am popping in to test things out today and share a few photographs with you.

I had a wee problem with a few trollers on the blog. They made everything sour. So I went quiet for a while hoping they would get bored. Now I am being careful. Poking my wooly head around the corner.

During all this time I have been in my work-triangle of mill to farm to bed. Head down. An apple a day. Lots of water. Getting on with it. Baking on the weekends. Saving. All that ordinary stuff.

If you are on Instagram you are welcome to join me over there. I will post pictures there more often but I miss telling the stories of the farm. Of course in the winter I never see it. I leave at 5 am and get home around 6pm. In the dark both ways.

Let’s hope the trolls did not hear me say I am on Instagram but I have been dying to invite you there I so am willing to risk it. You can work out the name I use- to post over there – that should sort the bastard mink out from the goats. Stay in touch.

The rain came last week. Torrential like rainy season in the tropics. At one point we had 2 inches in 10 minutes and again and again and in the end the rain gauge floated away and I stopped counting. The rivers and creeks and ditches rose, there was nowhere for the water to drain to – we are so flat and low. And the landscape went downhill fast. There was a fault in the ditch bank and the water made good use of it.

The flooded ditch water poured through the hole and into our fields. All the crops in our fields except a few higher islands of new corn are drowned. The road was closed with waves of water washing over it. I could not get my car out and the basement was flooding and holes were appearing in the plaster in the ceiling above old windows so I waited it out. My little car could not get through the water until yesterday – the rain started on Friday.

The gin was gone. I needed to get out.

When this all dries out the farmers will till it up and plant a cover crop. It is a disaster. And not just for us – many farmers lost their crops. But no one was hurt, the cranes and ducks are very well fed. The snapping turtles are out and about and a couple of beavers and unusual flocks of water birds have been sighted. Tadpoles are everywhere!

I have developed a fascination for clouds lately. Now that things are opening up and we are relaxing a little I feel my head turning upwards more.

If I could paint – I would get a krink in my neck painting these clouds. Watercolors I think.

Because I don’t have a lot of time to garden I have created an entire garden out of old pots on the porch. I am growing good food and tons of herbs on my little green belt.

Just as well because John’s big tomato garden got a good drowning after 6 days of solid rain. Do you see the strings up the back – I am growing tomatoes up those, as the tomato vines get higher and I begin to pick, I just drop the line a little every few days curling the vine down onto the top of the pot so the fruit is always within reach. An old glass house trick.

In the end Tia was not pregnant and as Aunty Del died softly in the night a wee while ago, ( which broke my already Sheila-broken heart) I brought Tia a couple of orphan calves for company. They will stay a few years and get fat in the fields.

Though the hay fields are underwater too. Hmm. That Champagne calf is a Charolais. Lovely animal. I won’t get attached.

The floodwaters are slowly draining now. They smell kind of brackish, dark and ominous. I dreamed the other night a crocodile came up out of the floodwaters. But they don’t have crocodiles here – alligators but not in Illinois. But anything could be washing through that big hole in the bank. Once the ditch, that was once a creek, goes down, the men will fix the breach in the bank and we will see what nature decides to bring next.

I hope you are all well. It was lovely dropping in! See you all again soon.

Have a great holiday weekend.

Talk soon.

Miss C

107 Comments on “It’s Been So Long

  1. We in California could have used some of the rain. Mother Nature is angry at us for all the damage we do to our planet. I love those cloud photos.

    • Yup. We have to change and adapt. No more wasteful behavior. But we can only change ourselves. As fast as we can. Here we are used to getting rain, though that was a bad one – worse than any of the old fellas can remember.

  2. It is great to hear from you again! I was just thinking about you! I, too, have had trolls, but I have been lucky. I have been able to set Akismet to send comments with certain words straight to my spam folder and block particular email addresses. I have missed your stories, and I am glad to see you again!

    • Sadly I knew who the trolls were so I was getting it from all sides in different mediums. I just did not feel free to speak my mind anymore. I just hope they have forgotten about me. I got the fear.

  3. So nice to hear you talking again. I love that photo of the massive clouds reflected in the field of water. It would make a great pastel painting, which I am in the process of learning. So nice to see you are still growing things and have lovely, well cared for animals. Hugs and love to you. xx

  4. It’s so VERY good to have you back. I suspect trolls are related to minks…

  5. So thankful I have been able to see and hear snippets on Instagram, but there is nothing in the world better than the reading the blog. Trolls are such nasty little creatures, likely with very low self-esteem I think. Welcome back Miss C!

      • No, Instagram is not meant for meaningful comments and discussion. I am well, thank you, and feeling the freedom like others after such a long time with Covid clouds hanging overhead. Take care.

      • STUNNING photos, lovely to read a blog from you again. Welcome back. Fingers tightly, tightly crossed that all is well re trolling and farm getting back to some sort of normality. So sorry to hear about Auntie Del. You must miss her.

  6. OMG! I really missed you! It’s great to see the animals again and hear that you are well. Your Charolais calf is beautiful and I’m sure it will be a good investment. Sorry about the floods, though Turner would have loved the clouds against the water.
    You can mark the Troll’s comments as spam and if they persist report them to WP – they should be able to ban them relative to their IP address.

  7. So very good to see your words and photos . . . even if we would wish for so much to be different. I have been called ‘negative’ for quoting ‘it is as it is’ – methinks I am but a realist. One has to make the best with what one is given . . . I smile at all the productive pots on your house steps and clap ‘yay’ ! Absolutely love your weather photos which should grace a book . . . yet am glad I was not there for the deluge . . . OK, we have our own kinds . . . and you say you will not get ‘attached’ to the gorgeous Charolais: name please as we probably will . . .

  8. So happy to receive your email. I miss your little farmy! Up here in Alberta we have just had a week of heat extr elms and right at this moment it is like a monsoon out there! Feast or famine! Thanks for all the photos!

  9. I was wondering how you and the farm were doing. We are dry as a bone here in Manitoba. Being adaptable is the only way to get along with Mother Nature. I agree with everyone who says the Earth is angry with us. We have to smarten up! We will be shaken off like unwanted fleas soon. I love your porch garden. Very productive! I’m hoping to travel soon to see my west coast son, I haven’t seen them in a year and a half and the boys keep growing! Your comment about gin made me smile. I hope you have everything you need.

  10. Welcome back! I’m sorry to hear of Aunty Dell and the floods, but your deck garden made my heart leap to know that you are still producing a garden. My garden too is all in pots, and now that I add sheep pellets flowers and lettuces are thriving.
    I salute your resilience and hope the clouds keep bringing you smiles. I have to approve all comments on my blog, not that I have so many as you. May the trolls shrink away and stay away.

    • Thank you Juliet – sadly it had nothing to do with commenting here – more about reading and commenting elsewhere. However things blow over – they always do. Hope all is well in your world!

  11. Really delighted to see you poke your head around the corner. I hope the trolls have gone back under their bridge and leave you alone. We’ve all missed you and your companions on the farm! Your new calves are gorgeous!

  12. Yikes! That first shot made me gulp! It is so nice to hear your voice! Dang those trolls… hope they crawled back under their bridge. And washed away!! Sorry to hear about Auntie Del. There certainly have been a lot of challenges lately. It helps to hear the voices from across the world here in your comments lounge. Having a seniors moment. Can’t remember what we are called. Some kind of blend between friendship and fellowship. You offer up both! Good luck Celi!

  13. I have missed reading your blog soooo much! You have such a way with words that even when the topics are sad your posts are good for the soul. Be well, and I hope to see you in my inbox again soon.

    P.S. I love the tomato plant idea! If I ever move mine out of the garden, I may have to give that a shot.

    • Without all our woofers and farm stay people we dont really need as big a garden. Also I love proving to people that you don’t need a big garden to have lots of fresh food!

  14. It’s wonderful to have you back. Even those of us who neither garden nor farm nor bake love your posts. Those two calves are soon to become favorites, I suspect!

  15. So very glad to hear from you. Your absence was just another point of disappointment in what’s been a long sad lonely time. So very hard to believe you’re awash and we, not ALL that far from you are still in semi drought though we have had a bit of relief the last couple of weeks. We shall all keep looking up (at the clouds?) and hopefully all the nasty meanness and vitriol that has seemed to build up will slowly slink back under their rocks.

  16. Welcome back! The rain is certainly a wee bit too much but glad you are safe. You’ve been busy none the less. I continue to make progress at my new place and have made a bunch of videos. I will be creating a bakery at this new place, once I’ve built the house. As well though, I’m going to be helping a group to setup a wool mill. I’m good with machinery and most of the equipment is old. The leader of this madness is Wave Weir, a designer. https://wavefibremill.com/
    In your free time spend a moment to watch my wrinkled face as I ramble on. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCv6hqUcjUhZgeXcgl1Rfuzg/featured

    • A wool mill! That sounds just wonderful! I will be very interested to hear how that goes – are they weaving too? Wool and bread! This sounds almost biblical!

  17. Oh, Miss C, how lovely to see you out and about in blogland again. Marlene and I have been worried; we speculated that you were simply insanely busy and hoped that’s all it was. What it actually was isn’t as bad as we feared. I am very, very happy to hear how things have been, even if there has been a biblical-style deluge to contend with. Trolls are nasty little troglodytes and I hope they have completely moved on. Hugs from tropical Australia, where it is also raining!

    • I be am so glad to hear that you are getting some rain. Areas of Australia are always incredibly dry and getting dryer – I wonder as a human race if we have not spread out too far into areas where it is simply not sustainable to live. Certainly Las Vegas is a prime example of this. And people building entire towns in forests that regularly burn. Yes. Lots to think about. Good to hear from you!

  18. Love you and missed you ! Your photos are great. I feel like we are long time friends.

  19. I was just telling my daughter about you today and all the amazing things you have going on and how I missed reading about them. We were talking grilling and I told her about the bread you can make on the grill. The stuff about baking is interesting but I love hearing how the animals and fields are getting on. Many of us who put ourselves out there run into the trolls occasionally, it sometimes is just easier to walk away than try to correct everything. Hope you have time to keep this up and I know I am grateful to hear what is happening. Sending you love and peace.

    • That chapa bread is so easy! My chooks are eating great piles of it today! I bake a lot to test flours but cannot possibly eat more than a taste of each. I will try to keep it up , especially as the mill is so quiet at the moment.

  20. Wonderful to hear from you again and see your photos. So sorry to see you lost Aunty Del. I do hope the trollers will leave you alone now. they deprived us of your enjoyable blog. All the best for your recovery from those terrible floods.

  21. You have been missed. Now and then I pop over, afraid I have again been kicked off the email subscription haha
    I’m so sorry to hear about Aunty Del, she was my favourite 😔
    As always beautiful pics, Celi! That is sooooooo much water 😱 Hope everyone has dried out ok xo

  22. So pleased to see you back. I’d assumed you’d just become too busy to keep the blog going, but I’m so sad to hear the real reason.

    • It is true that with 12 hour work days away from the farm it is hard to find content and time but I will try to be more connected. I do miss you all.

  23. So nice to hear from you again, I really do miss your tales of the farm, I am so sorry about Auntie Dell.
    Let’s hope the horrid trolls have forgotten you. There is a lot of vitriol and anger out there! Keep safe and I still follow you on instagram, but as others have said it’s not the same.

    • Yes. Losing Del marked the end of an era. Whatever killed her calf in utero changed her digestive system she struggled on much too long- the old girl.

  24. It has been such a long time and I thank you for sharing with us once again. Can’t imagine the damage caused by all of the water and hope your animals managed. We have a friend who uses that string method with his tomato plants and he trims off the leaves on the bottom of the plants so they look like trees. We have had some very high temperatures here in Brockport, NY and needed to water our veggies quite a bit. Finally got some rain and everything is growing like crazy. Do you ever get to rest?

    • Good morning, Lori, I am a good sleeper! It is my best thing! Yes- trimming the leaves reduces the risk of rot in the coil at the bottom of the tomato plant too. A bit of heat and a bit of water produces great food. Too much of either and not so good! Hope your good weather holds!

  25. Hi Celi! Hi Fellowship of the Farmy! So good to hear from you Celi! And to see our friends on the farmy again! The dogs, and pigs, chooks, and even Mr. Flowers strolling about! And of course the new arrivals. Quite startling to see the flooded fields! Does that mean no organically grown wheat at all this year? Or will you have a chance at a second crop? Sending you and everyone hugs and happiness! XOXO

    • We have almost 3,000 acres in crops and the wheat looks great – as I toured about it yesterday! No second crop on our land though – probably a good cover crop.

  26. Good to see you back. Sorry you have had so much nasty trouble. It’s easy to say block and move on, but… So sorry about Aunty Del :-(.

  27. So, so good to see your post this morning! I would love to see a close up picture of the tomatoes with the line. Might like to try this.

    • I will take one for you – basically a strong line from the plant to the structure above. Pull out all the laterals so the plant grows straight up. Turn twist the plant stem around the line.

  28. Hi Miss C. I have missed your pictures and commentaries, a bit of life on the farm. I haven’t the time this morning to read all the other comments. Insta is a little awkward for me as I don’t have an acct and most of the time it pops that annoying login screen up . some just want to read /see about different places.

    Living in the suburbs I have limited space to grow a few veg. The rabbits & deer can easily wipe me out. I have a few cucs, tomatoes , yellow squash and zuchini. They grow fast enough and are not so tasty. I miss my green beans. I used to grow enough to fill the pot for a few meals. Did not even try it this year. Late cold weather (yes in NC) and then the varmints. I do some container growing as well as in a few flower beds. Considering the flooded fields, containers on the porch are a good choice. A small Kitchen Garden 🙂

    I did wonder if you became so busy that posting was set aside. So worrisome to hear about the real cause. They need to grow up and become responsible adults. Period. Post when you can, even the odd picture with or without comment is welcome.

    M in NC

    • I do work 12 hour days as well! But while the light holds I will try to do better. I love my container garden though I do need to get some more fish fertilizer – containers are easily leached of goodness

  29. Good to hear from you- sorry about the trolls….take care and I wish we had some of your rain here on the west coast!

      • At least we are in Washington state- moved back a few years ago from the Mt Shasta area as the fires were getting closer and closer.
        Now we are close to the Columbia River and the Columbia Gorge. Much better!

        • That does sound better. There are some areas people should not settle / too dangerous and just not sustainable. Rivers and gorges sound dramatic!

  30. There were 3 comments when I read this earlier this morning and now look how many have missed you already! I had to come back to let you know how happy I am to see you here. It was hard as all my favorite bloggers left the scene at the same time. You brighten every day and I missed you. Finally found you on Instagram but I’m not good at using it so I haven’t learned to comment. I haven’t figured out why people have to be mean. If you don’t like what someone writes, go elsewhere for goodness sake. So sorry to see all the flooding. Weather is in an extreme pattern these days. I’m so ready for a shot of normal again. Happy weekend to you.

      • Not writing as much these days. Lots of changes going on so time and bandwidth are limited. Yes, we should always appreciate boring and normal. Hugs. M

  31. Glad to see you back. I had wondered where you were. As I can only wheelchair garden now your posts are a bright spot. I’m sure you heard about our blizzard in Feb. We [the Homestead Nursing Home] lost power and water, had to evacuate. An adventure I could have skipped. Sorry to hear about the animals, the really are family.

      • Have a couple of cucumber vines taht I’ve let spead rather than climb, and 3 tomato plants, ”Improved Porters”. A wheelchair garden to be waist high to the person in the chair and workable from both sides. Mine is made from reclaimed pallettes.

  32. I’m so glad to see you are okay, I’ve missed you. It was a difficult winter here on the hill with all the snow and ice. The rain the last week or so had left quite a few with flooded basements and some of the streets were almost impassable with all the water. I was saddened to hear that Aunty Del is gone, she was such a beautiful cow. I’ve had some major changes myself which are best left alone. Pity there are people with nothing better to do than be trolls and disrupt things for other people. I hope things dry out soon and that maybe we’ll hear from you more often. All the best.

  33. I’m so sorry about Auntie Del.

    I could not agree more about the sky in the midwest. People complian that driving through the flat states is just boring corn fields. But I just say, you’re looking wrong. Look up.

  34. Really sorry about the flooding and losing your crops. How devastating for everyone there.
    Trolls are annoying. I’m not on Instagram but I will keep up here.

  35. So good that you’ve ventured back into tbe blog world. I enjoy our common social media community via its various platforms and members but the Fellowship of the Farmy is a phenomenon that represents the positives the internet contributes to our lives. Productive potted plants are great… we do not need huge spaces to grow food… sometimes big gardens are counterproductive… too much water, materials, time and work involved. R.I.P. Aunty Del ♡

  36. Oh, Celi it’s so good to see you here again! I have missed you and the Farmy friends. So great to see Ton, Wai, Boo and all the others, but so sad to hear about Aunty Del. I love seeing you in Instagram, but the blog is the best. Here in Maine where we should be getting our share of the rain, we are sadly continuing last year’s drought again. This weekend we are getting a little rain, but probably too little again. I hope the trolls leave you alone. Great to see you back :*)

  37. I too stop by regularly, hoping you were posting. I was ready to put yours in the ‘closed’ – when lo! here you be!
    I am glad to hear from you and get your updates.

  38. So good to see you. I’ve seen some posts at Janie’s Mill but it’s not the same. Trolls’ spreading vitriol says a lot more about them than about you, but is still concerning. Stay well. Your determination is inspiring!

  39. SO good to get news and know that you are all OK despite the flooding!
    Looking forward to more!

  40. Hi Miss C. I enjoyed reading your Great blog and I hope you continue to write. I am new to WordPress and as soon as I can figure out how to like and subscribe to your blog , I will! All the Best to you! Many Blessings!

  41. Thank goodness for this day. You have carved a deep place in my heart and life today is just a little more normal. Thank you Celi for the prairie skies. The clouds
    your will find no where else but on the broad central plans. Thank you Celi for returning to us. XXXX Virginia

  42. Hi how are you doing? I love your blog, when I started my blog you are one of the blogs I love on here, nobody shouldn’t be trolling anyone, that is blog bullying.

  43. Hey Celi how lovely to hear from you! I’m a cloud fan too, and your photos are just fabulous. Sorry to hear about the volume of rain .. Thinking of you and sending love 🙂

  44. So nice to see you back. Instagram is fine but it doesn’t get into the heart and soul of the farm like your posts here do. Trolls are terrible

  45. Oh, Aunti Del. 😦 How sad. And what a bummer about the trolls. Blocking them can help, of course, but sometimes it gets to much. I =t’s nice you’re back, though and I have a few posts to read. ❤ I love to read them in waves as I find time.

  46. I looked at your blog the other day and saw that the last post was in January. My heart sank and l hoped all was okay. What a great surprise to see you back with your stunning photos. Forget the haters. There’s too much hate in the world. Welcome back Celcilia. I am so glad you are back:))

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