We'd like to sell our place to be out from under the huge monthly payment......that's about the only reason. Since we've downsized our animal situation, the stress level is much much lower and we have a lovely place that we are proud of. God has provided The Man with a wonderful job that allows us to make our monthly payments without any trouble and that is another of His wonderful blessings! If we did sell our place and rent for awhile, we would have to get rid of 3 of our dogs, and my horse. I've had Champ for 10 years, and I didn't relish the idea of re-homing him. I love that old man, even though I don't really do anything with him much anymore. He is 22 years old and I made a commitment to him that I'd keep him forever. Going back on that commitment was a source of serious agony for me. I also was very saddened at the prospect of being without my Ellie-girl. Gosh how much peace that big yalla dog brings me!
That is pretty good, and I enjoy having that many animals. I do miss having my own eggs, and I truly did enjoy milking. Since we are staying here, I could bring chickens back and get my girls bred, but here's where the internal struggle part comes in.
As some of you know, we are a family of 3 and one of us is on Weight Watchers. The Man leaves for work VERY early in the morning and he doesn't eat breakfast except for on the weekends. The Youngun is a cereal or oatmeal kinda gal and when I'm being good on WW I eat steel cut oats or bran flakes. (When I'm being bad I eat everything that doesn't eat me!). I don't bake much at all anymore because, again, The Man isn't a sweet eatin' type of guy (other than ice cream) and I certainly don't need to eat it, and The Youngun isn't really into it much either. That said when I sold my chickens back at the end of June, I had 3 dozen eggs in my fridge. I didn't have to buy eggs until we got back from Florida LAST WEEK! That means that 3 dozen eggs lasted me 9 weeks. Now I ask you, what kind of sense did it make for me to have 40 chickens runnin' round?? It didn't make any sense at all. I had them because they brought me joy, but then after 20 some odd years of having chickens, at home and after we got married, they weren't bringing me joy anymore. I had a few egg customers that I'd sell to, and they were sorry to hear I was getting out of the business, but I haven't really missed the chickens a bit, until I had to go buy eggs. I bought 2 dozen eggs on Saturday after we got home and I know they'll last me at least a month or more.
On to the goats......same problem. I really enjoy milking, it's soothing and I love the product. But again, family of three......I got a minimum of 2 qts a day and that was only milking once a day. That means in two days, I had a gallon of milk in the fridge. In a week I had close to 4 gallons of milk. A gallon of milk lasts us a week, sometimes more, depending. I would feel simply frantic thinking of the waste and what in the world was I going to do with it all. There are lots of ways you can look at it, but I would just feel this crushing panic when I had 6 gallon of milk and 16 dozen eggs in my fridge.
So........God has decided we'll stay, and that's a very good thing. Will I add chickens back into the mix this spring? I've yet to decide, but one thing's for sure..........I won't be having 40 hens again in this lifetime! If I do bring them back, I'll get around 4-6 laying hens and maybe some Silkies, just cuz I like 'em. As for milking, I probably won't go back to it. I truly love milking and if I could go out and milk when I needed the milk (much like turning on a faucet) then I'd do it, but it just doesn't work that way! I just can't handle the waste of the milk.
I'll plant garden in the spring, only on a much smaller scale. We've got a list of projects to do around the place, but things are a bit different now. Instead of tackling them like we have to do them, we are going to do the ones that will bring us the most joy at a pace that allows us to actually enjoy the beautiful home that God has provided for us.