Christopher Shepherd

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since Jan 30, 2019
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food preservation homestead ungarbage
My wife,son and I working on a little farm.
Ohio 5b6a
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Recent posts by Christopher Shepherd

I notice too that the cows get hungrier right before a storm.  They all come back down from the pasture and hang out waiting for their treat.  The guineas make a lot more noise.  I always wonder how they know.  I bet if we lived outside we might be more in tune with the weather too.
1 month ago
Hi Bonnie,  please forgive me of my misspellings.  I am an engineer by trade and spelling and writing are my two worst subjects.  I am trying to learn to communicate my ideas better by writing here on permies.  

The cabbage upside down sheds the water and a layer of leaves or straw keep them cool.  

Wrapping the ham is done to keep the salt on them so it doesn’t drip off.  We use old fashioned grocery heavy paper bags.  We wrap them then use twin to hold it on and hang it.  The key to preserving meat is to dehydrate it rapidly so botulism cannot grow.

I hope to get better at writing and make a small book of the way we do things to give out to people like you how thirst for the knowledge.
1 month ago
I was born in a big city and moved to the country when I was 3.  I soon learned to not piss anywhere near an electric fence.  

Later on my cousin and I would have competitions on who could hold the timothy on the fence the longest.  She would giggle every time it pulsed and I would let go.  She was tuff.

This spring early in the morning I started weed eating around the fence.  Dew, a metal shaft and a dipshit in a hurry is equal to pain.

You know, you would think I would get it by now.
1 month ago
Hi Patricia.  I live over by Dalton.  I use Maysville elevator for BT testing.  They only sell non gmo corn and have invested in the equipment to test.  It is expensive though.  This year the ground temperature at our farm didn't get warm enough to sprout until the last few days of May.  I have noticed that our timing is messed up too.  We grow an old line of dent corn that accidently gets pollinated with our sweet corn and flint corn sometimes.  The only thing we have that doesn't seem to cross is our strawberry popcorn. This year the wind has seldom come from the west like other years.  It definitely looks like it was crossed with a dent corn.  
Well, I feel for you here.  I put my poor momma through the ringer on this one.  I was 4 and said" mamma birds have wings and fly right?, airplanes have wings and fly right?  Rain deer don't have wings".  I'll never forget the look on her face.  She was almost devastated.  She said the next thing I said was " that means there is no such thing as the Easter bunny either?"  I never told my little brother and he didn't find out till he was about 10. It really cool, because by little brother is way more artistic than I am.  We are totally different and we are ok with that.  I think when the child has the logical ability to separate imagination from reality its ok for them to know.  Raising my own child on a farm has given me the same challenges that mom had.  A child that does their own chores at a young age teaches physics quickly.  My son figured it out at 6 years old and I would watch him smile and play along when one of his older cousins would mention Santa or the Easter bunny.  I wish you luck.
1 month ago
Our cherry trees loose most of their leaves in august here.  It takes a couple years for ours to really get rooted.  Last year a new one looked like it was completely dead by September.  It totally filled out this spring.
1 month ago
I have used kitty litter in a pinch, most kitty liters are bentonite.  Some have other types of clay.  I can get a bag for a buck at the local dollar general.
1 month ago
Hi James.  We unfortunately had a turkey go down last week.  It was walking around the yard and just fell flat on it chest.  My wife yelled out from the kitchen and my son grabbed it, hung it in a tree and slit it.  It bled out well so we butchered it.  We found a blood clot in the chest cavity. We put one of the breasts in the crock pot the next morning and had it for supper.  It was tender and tasty.  If you check out the bones when cooking never frozen poultry , they are not black.
1 month ago
Hi Tereza.  I just got made fun of today by an old man that has to go to work everyday.  As I walked by he said " how do you get to work when ever you want?  Aren't you special?".  I understand he doesn't mean any harm, he is jealous.  I am 45 and work for a company about 3 days a week.  I don't need the money without debt.  I keep up on my engineering skills and am able to foot the medical by working a little bit.  I am spoiled by my wife's teaching job in that I don't even need medical if I choose. The main things I think that hold people back are debt and medical.  I spend the rest of my time working on the homestead.  My wife and I figured I work about 24 hours a week at engineering and around 60 hours a week homesteading.  I like to work so it's ok with me.  Most people I know from church watch about 4 hours of tv a day.  I watch no tv and this gives me 28 extra hours to learn.  For the most part people around me don't understand me.  Some say I am lazy, some say I am crazy, and some say I am not fulfilling my corporate duty.  I get told I need to do things a certain way or I am not a good husband and father.  It would be easy for me to ask them when was the last week they worked over 80 hours and rebuke them, but I have learned to walk away.  I am so lucky to have a wife that understands and participates with me.  Many nights we will eat only what we grew.  My son at the age of 16 has made a good living at selling lots of homestead staples and niches.  I keep teaching him he doesn't need to be rich and no debt keeps you free.  In the cool of evening when I am done I get to look out across the farm and a great thankfulness often overtakes me.  I often think, how does a little person like me get to do such great things like this!
2 months ago
I would try Anne's way first and if that don't work I would use lye.  The stubborn bacon grease clogs our family tends to get this time of years is because of to many BLT juices end up down the drain.  Lye is potassium hydroxide or sodium hydroxide.  It is what we use on our farm to make soap and biodiesel.  It is extremely aggressive and caution needs to be taken when using.  It will only work if the drain slowly goes down.  We put it into the sink next to the toilet drain or the toilet.  Use only cold water and add about two table spoons full to the sink drain or bowl.  Be carful not to get it on any metal or your skin. Run the water for about 15 seconds after adding it and let it settle in the pipes below or flush the toilet.  When it gets to the clog it will eat it away.  Usually only takes 15 minutes.  Hair and greases are no obstacle for it.  If its still clogged try it a second time.  When the clog is clear run the sink or flush the toilet for a couple minutes to flush the system clean. Please do not use worm or hot water with lye.  The high ph becomes exceedingly more aggressive with temperature.  If you do happen to get some on your hands wash with cold water for about 10 minutes.  
2 months ago