Archive | August, 2011

Pointer Brand Jeans

29 Aug

I got my new Pointer Brand jeans today. ( sorry the picture is out of focus ) I could have bought some jeans at the local Big Mart for about half the price of these jeans, but that is not all I am buying with this purchase. I am also buying peace of mind. The jeans from China could be made in some sweatshop with 12-year-old children as virtual slave labor under horrible adverse conditions. Then the jeans could be treated with who-knows-what chemicals to protect them from insects, rodents and mold. I don’t want those chemicals next to my bare skin! On the other hand, the Pointer Brand jeans were made near here in Bristol, Tennessee. I know they were manufactured using safe chemicals and safe working conditions under the guidance of OSHA and the EPA. That is one reason the products in the USA cost more. I also have the satisfaction of knowing I helped provide a job for someone here in Tennessee, so buy Made in the USA.


27 Aug

Yesterday while I was taking pictures of the wildflowers, I was lucky enough to get close to this cicada. The picture is a little blurry because he was rubbing his wings and making that distinctive whirring sound. EEEEEEHHH! Some people don’t like this sound, they say it is kind of eerie. I like it, the sound reminds me of warm summer evenings, swinging on the front porch swing. Besides, this sound helps dround out the ringing sound of my tinnitus in my ears. HAHA!

Wild Flowers

27 Aug

If you look around you can see lots of wild flowers as you go around the countryside. Many of these are considered weeds, but they are still pretty, like this morning-glory.

Or this morning-glory.

This is a Mimosa tree bloom.

This is Golden Trumpet Creeper.

This is red Trumpet Creeper.

This is Phlox.

This is a roadside weed with a full head of purple berries. They look appetising, but could be highly poisonous so I won’t eat any.

Wild Hibiscus

26 Aug

I have been watching these wild Hibiscus growing on the edge of one of the fields I check. I gathered some seed pods off of them today and I will sow them around some of the ditch areas of the homestead for naturalizing. Free flowers!

Farm Photo Of The Day

23 Aug

I recently discovered a farmer I work for started a blog this summer. The blog was actually started by his son, Woody who has gone off to medical school. Andy and his wife Karen will continue the blog in Woody’s absence. The blog details the ongoing day-to-day events on their family farm, as well as the history of their family and how they are continuing a long tradition of farming. The blog is written in an informative and entertaining manner and is well worth a look. You can go to or you can click on the link to the right on this page.

Old Abandoned Homesteads

20 Aug

As I am going about my work, several of the farms I work have old abandoned homesteads on them.  I don’t see as many of them now as I did a few years ago, they are steadily disappearing. Here are some pictures I took today.

I really hate to see these old places go away, it is always the same old story. Most of these places are owned by people my age ( mid 50’s ) who have moved to town to pursue their lives. When the parents pass away, none of the children are willing to move back “way out there in the country”. Usually, they won’t sell the homestead at first for sentimental reasons, but soon the houses become unlivable due to neglect and vandalism. Then the children will finally decide to go ahead and sell. Then the first thing the new owner will do is knock down the old home and barns as well as the old trees. Most of these places have 100 year old oak trees , old fruit trees and pecans. The farmer won’t even try to use the trees for lumber or even firewood, they just push them into a pile and burn them. If you ever ask why, they will usually explain “son, these machines charge by the hour, I can’t afford to mess around and waste time, I need them to do what they need to do and get the job finished”.

This world economy we have is really concerning me. The US owes so much debt, there is no way we can ever be free of the debt. There is no way any country could ever pay 14 trillion dollars of debt. The whole world economy is so interrelated, it is just one big house of cards. One little gust of bad luck wind and the whole thing will come tumbling down around our ears. When that happens, the depression we had back in the 1930’s will seem like a picnic in comparison. Back in those days we were a much more agrarian society and much better able to help ourselves. Even if you didn’t grow your own food or raise your own livestock, you probably had family or close friends who did. Now most of us get all of our food from the store. What happens when the shelves go bare? Some of these people who let the old homestead go may wish they still had them if things get really bad. Let’s pray we don’t have another depression, but if we do are you prepared?

Texas Longhorn

16 Aug

I snapped a picture of this longhorn yesterday and sent it to Sweet Thing with the message “I just bought him for our homestead”. She sent back ” Oh No! I don’t want that thing wandering around in my yard, not with those long pointed horns. You can just march back to where you got him and sell him back!” I guess she has no appreciation for the old heritage breeds. We don’t see many Longhorns around here, this man raises them to sell as a novelty. We usually raise Angus or Herefords in this area. As you can see by the picture he is sort of skinny and scrawny and probably wouldn’t make very good beef. So for all you Texas Longhorn fans who found your way to this site, all I can say is Gig Um Aggies!

Wake Up! Wake Up!

12 Aug

Hey Swamp Dog, you better get up out of that bed and stop dreaming! Your chickens are out of the pen and are ruining my flowers. The pigs are out in the neighbors garden again, you know they said one more time and you are in big trouble! The wheat needs harvesting and the grapes have needed harvesting for so long they are turning to raisins. Better get on the stick you have lots to do. Chickens out ( no eggs ) Pigs loose ( no bacon ) wheat dried up ( no flour no bread ) grapes all shriveled up ( no jelly ) OH, BUT AIN’T THIS FUN?

So now come get your real breakfast. Pre-cooked sausage, egg beaters, canned biscuits, raisins and pop tarts. But Sweet Thing loves you anyway. Kissy Kissy!

Hearty Breakfast

9 Aug

Our niece is taking cooking lessons from Sweet Thing. Recently she prepared this breakfast of home-made biscuits, buttermilk gravy (from scratch), and hand patted ground sausage. Looks delicious, doesn’t it? ( I don’t know why she didn’t fix eggs ) I like eggs with my breakfast. As a matter of fact I can just imagine waking up and rolling over and nudging Sweet Thing awake and saying “You know what I would like this morning? I would like 2 fried eggs with some of that ground sausage we mixed and ground ourselves. Then some toast from that home-made bread you baked from the wheat we ground from our food storage. I can then spread some of the home-made jelly we canned from the grapes we grew last summer. Doesn’t that sound good?” Then she would reply “Sure Swamp Dog, anything you want. I’ll get dressed and go out to the hen-house and gather those eggs, then  I’ll fix your breakfast just like you want it. as a matter of fact I’ll bring it in here and serve it to you in bed along with some hot coffee and fresh squeezed orange juice. So why don’t you just roll over and go back to sleep and rest, you deserve it after all the hard work you do around here.” Kissy Kissy. Ahh Yeah. Living the good life on the homestead, I can hardly wait.

Farm Fresh Eggs

7 Aug

My nephew recently sent us some of his farm fresh eggs. Here is a picture of the eggs in the nest and in the carton.

Here is a picture of his chickens in the pen. He has an assortment of different breeds.

And now he has just received a new shipment of 75 chicks to raise for laying next year.

I asked him what he was doing with all those chicks. “Eggs” he says. What are you going to do with all those eggs? “Sell um” he says.  ( Nephew is a young man of few words) So I guess I will have plenty of eggs until I can get my own hen house up and running. Nephew has been raising his for two years now, and it will be at least a year and a half before I have mine so he can help me then, he will be an old experienced pro by then.