The spring planting season is almost upon us. Here, we have to get through yet another freeze this year. Texas, what is going on??? This has been a crazy, mostly cold winter season and spring starts on March 20 this year. I just heard that we will be at 31° and 28° later this week. That cannot be right!
Good, chilly Monday morning. All weekend, the wind blew but it was in the 80s. Now, magically, overnight it is 50° and feels cold with a low of 45° tonight. So much for the spring planting season this week. I was actually going to start planting yesterday because it was so nice but the weed barrier cloth over one of my raised beds does not have any holes in it. Good thing because it is going to be below 32° again this week. We thought it was over. In fact, most years, we don't even get these silly temperatures.
Matthew just pulled in to work. He said David sent him to get space heaters so you know it is going to be cold.
It is now 1:20pm and the temperature is 52° so it won't be hitting 80° today like it did on the weekend. We have had a lot of customers and they tell us they are on spring break. Spring break season is upon us in the cold. The visitors are all gearing up for spring planting season even though it will freeze this week again.
I did my first Facebook live this morning from our greenhouse and I saw that two people were watching. One of those people came in and told me she saw it! It is her birthday today. I was thrilled that anyone watched! I took a look at just how many seedlings David has out in the greenhouse. Hundreds of them...So far, we have sold 26 plants and a whole lot of seeds and eggs.
Today, Shay started working in the store, helping with pulling orders and stocking. Matthew is now doing videos, photos and social media. I am supposed to be doing more computer work and plant work. Linda will continue to print orders and close them after they have been pulled. Of course, we will all take care of the customers. Matthew gave several tours today in the cold. It is the beginning of spring break in our area so we had quite a few families and visitors today. It took me by surprise since it stayed chilly all day long.
Have you seen our TV commercial yet? Our son, Matt, wrote the music and jingle and plays the music and sings on it. If not, here it is:
You can see it on MeTV as the spring planting season nears.
We no longer carry the Carolina Reaper seed. We are growing some in the greenhouse but they are not for sale. I mistakenly sold some this morning but David set me straight. It is 2pm and still windy and cold. Nacho has built another really big raised bed out by the fence line.
Earlier this afternoon, there was something dead with eyes floating in the pond. I got the net and it was a dead frog. I can find only seven fish so I think we lost five last Friday instead of four.
At 5pm, I closed the store and went out to collect eggs. I collected a lot of eggs and then noticed a dead Ameracauna hen in the corner of the nesting box area, one of my black and gold ones. Fortunately, Matthew was still on the premises and came and got her out. I think I figured out what is happening. This hen was close to where the other hen was found about a month ago. They are flying off the roost and crashing into a beam right in their line of flight. Matthew is going to get some padding tonight so we can cover the beam. I am just sick about losing my chickens.
Nacho and one of his sons were out here working on more raised beds today and they are due to come back again tomorrow. We are getting the farm all fixed up for the spring planting season.
This past weekend, to get ready for the spring planting season, I chose a bunch of vegetable, herb, fruit, and flower seeds to plant. We are having another cold snap at the end of this week so we have to hold off on planting. Right now, The Weather Channel is calling for 33° on Friday night and 32° on Friday night, much better than what I heard this morning which was 31° and 28°. Maybe it won't be so bad after all.
Good Tuesday morning. It was 45° when I awoke at 6am. It is now 9am and it is still 45°. I went outside to start up my car and it is cold. Then I went to our farm store to put cash in the register. I fed the fish and saw six of them. I am hoping for at least one more.
Nacho and a helper are here doing more raised bed work but it will be for just a few hours. I am leaving in just a few minutes for a much needed hair appointment.
Matthew got some thick foam rubber and put it up in the chicken coop where the chickens are crashing as they fly off of the roost and it looks good. I hope it saves lives and that the chickens don't peck at it. I feel so bad for my hens. They must have broken their necks when they crashed. I have seen some near misses while I am out there and I know some of them are afraid to fly off of the top roost.
The day is overcast. I am leaving the store in the hands of Linda and Shay while I am gone. I also need to get some groceries. Today is definitely not a good spring planting season day unless you have a greenhouse.
I got my hair done and I think it looks better than the last time. Then I went by Walmart for some groceries. I did not get much because I was starving. Then I went home, ate lunch and put my groceries away.
Linda and Shay said there were 7 customers there. I got over there and a couple came in. I was helping them and Josh was out on the store porch. He plugged the drill in and pop! The lights, the internet, and a lot of electricity went off. Fortunately, the refrigerator and air conditioner stayed on. I rang up the couple and the drawer wouldn't open, nor would the receipt print. Fortunately, I found the key to the drawer and got change.
I told Josh he tripped the circuit but he told me that he did not. I said five of us were in the store and we all saw him and then pop. He refused. David called some electricians. A family then came in. I was able to take their credit card just fine in the dark but I could not give them a receipt or do anything on the computer.
Two hours later, the power was still off. Then the electrician came and Bam! The electricity magically turned on and now we have to pay them for nothing.
Matthew did a good job putting the rubber padding in the chicken coop. I hope it works. I got a bunch of eggs again. I think we need to get the chicken bed ready for babies again. I think we will need some new ones.
Mail and packages are taking so much longer to be delivered now, yet customers still want their mail in two to three days. When I print out a USPS label, it says five business days.
A few weeks ago, I mailed a check in the day after I got a bill and the business called me continually a week before the check was due. I told them I received it on a Friday, mailed it on Saturday and they couldn't hope to get it before the following Friday, five business days. The woman kept telling me that if it was not received by the next Monday, it would be late and service would be discontinued. I told her she needs to start sending bills out earlier because the post office is taking longer. She just kept arguing with me. She got the check on time. Why was she even calling me more than a week before payment was due? I noticed in my online banking today that she cashed the check on the due date.
The world has gone nuts over Russia invading Ukraine. I think it is horrible but there is nothing I can do about it. Meanwhile, a customer came into the store asking for tomato recommendations. I showed her several of my favorites. One is the Black Krim Beefsteak. She looked at the package, handed it back to me and said that she couldn't do it because this was a Russian tomato. Yes, originally, long ago, the tomato came from Russia but the seeds have been here for a long time, produced in the United States. She said no, that she would have nothing to do with it because of what the Russians are doing to Ukraine. What? They are seeds.
Good Wednesday morning. It is 41° but was supposed to get down to 34°. It should get up to 71°. I woke up all through the night too hot as someone I live with (someone we all know and love) had the heater on. The vent is right over the bed so it was just too hot.
I need to go out and do things as it is getting light now but I don't want to go out in the cold. I haven't been able to get hold of the lady who cleans our house. She missed last week due to a death in the family but I need to know when she might come out again. She just didn't show up last Thursday so I texted her. She said she was at a funeral and couldn't come. She never told me ahead of time and I was scheduled for her to be here at 9am. Since then, she won't answer texts. I texted her early yesterday morning before the workday started and asked her when she might be able to come out since it is now three weeks since she has been here. She never answered. At 5:55am today, I texted her again, asking her when she could come. No response. Finally at 3pm today, I texted her that I would be finding someone else to clean my home since I could not get a response from her.
Amazingly, she texted right back as soon as I fired her. She said she was busy training an assistant. For 24 hours in a row and then all day long today? She told me she would send her assistant tomorrow to clean my house. I told her no thank you. Don't ignore me and then wait until I fire you to respond. I have always been good to her and I always tipped her so I am not sure why she would have ignored me like that. I had already had enough disrespect for one day. So I got the vacuum out to clean. It is barely sucking up three weeks worth of dirt. I ordered a new one from Amazon.
It is very hard to find anyone to work out here in our home or in our business as well. We have done countless interviews. For the most part, they interview, accept the job and never show up, or show up for one day and never call, or show up for a while and then just stay at home, thus firing themselves and then going to Texas workforce and getting unemployment. How is this allowed to happen? It amazes me.
So we started hiring through an employment company and it is not much better. They show up in ripped jeans with an attitude, show up hours late, or don't show up at all. When we hire them, they forget to show up or show up for one day and that is that. What is going on with American workers? Since corona, they just don't want to get their happy butts up and go to work. We never shut down during corona because we are an essential business so most of our people have not had that mentality. However, we have lost a few who just decided to stay home and not call or come in. They sit at home waiting for the government to send them money, a paltry amount to live on.
Today is a part of the early spring planting season but now we are waiting on another freeze this weekend so the only planting we can do will take place in our greenhouses. How about you? Will you take your chances and plant outdoors like so many of you told me in the farm store? Remember that it is not our seeds that are no good if you plant and the freeze takes the plants. You cannot jump the gun and plant while danger of frost is still lurking. Just start things indoors or in a heated greenhouse for spring planting season.
We now have moringa seeds just in time for spring planting season. They are expensive seeds. I am not sure how long we will have them but we have a few packages now. This is the most requested seed in the store that we do not have. It is supposed to be a super food that people in poor countries can eat and malnutrition goes away. Here is the link to our Moringa Seeds. We are once again out of moringa. It sold out quickly and is pretty expensive. I am not sure if or when we will get more.
Today was just a bad day as far as I am concerned so I guess that is all I will say on the matter.
The employment agency normally brings their employee checks for those who work for them at our company on Tuesdays. I had our check all written since yesterday. They never came. I finally called the owner. She said she was busy today but said she would send someone with them by noon tomorrow.
The electricity went out at the store again today, just like yesterday while customers were in the store. I was not in there this time. I had no knowledge of this because not one person informed me. So when an electrician showed up from the same company that was here yesterday, I told him the problem was fixed. He told me it wasn't. I wondered why he was at my front door of the house instead of at the store where the problem was. I let David know what was going on and he came and got the guy. Our home is behind six business buildings so he really had to work at getting back here instead of dealing with someone in one of the business buildings.
It turns out that the original electrician who put all of the electrical works in our store put them all on one circuit. Yes, lights, plugs, everything so it kept shorting out. Yesterday, David told me it was all my fault because I had too many things plugged in. What? It takes a lot of plugs to use computers, cash register pieces, printers, etc. in a retail store. Today, he found out it was the original electrician's fault for not setting it all up right way back in the spring of 2020.
I got the eggs after 4pm and took care of the animals.
Late this afternoon, one of our regular customers came by to shop and to bring us an Alma fig tree that he propagated. That was so nice of him.
While he was here, the man who sold us the roses for our rose garden came by with several different types of flowers in buckets and hanging pots. We bought a lot of them to hang around the campus.
I weeded the flower beds in front of the store in time for spring planting season. Small zinnias are growing there so I want to cover them. I wonder where the white plant covers that we used during Snowpocalypse are. I hope I can find them.
This morning, Linda has off. Shay will be in the store, hopefully, pulling orders and getting them out since I am not supposed to touch them anymore. I have a lot of computer and video work to do but I never can seem to get it done.
There is also the matter of getting plants ready and actual spring planting season should begin next week now since we are having a freeze again.
I also need to start cleaning my house a lot. My new vacuum gets here tomorrow. Tomorrow Linda will be at the store and Shay will be off. Shay will be here on Saturday and now my other Saturday help has been let go. The temporary workers are expensive because we have to pay an additional $2 an hour to the employment agency for each person. We had four.
It was a busy day at the store because the temperature stayed warm all day long. At one point, I had five customer groups in the store at once and my assistant for the day left me twice. Then a customer wanted David and me to pose with him and his wife and we went outside and took photos. Then I finally ran to the restroom. I thought my bladder would burst I had to go so bad.
Late in the afternoon, we got three boxes of asparagus crowns,
purple and green. If you want some asparagus crowns, they are $2.95 a
crown and have to be in the ground by Wednesday, March 16 or they will
die. This is an in store purchase only. The mail would never get to you
in time to plant.
This evening as I was preparing dinner, David decided to oven roast some pecans. He put some in a glass pie plate with some oil and put them under the broiler. I did not know all of this. They caught on fire. Literally.
David dumped water on the pie plate and broke that. I was yelling to put salt but that did not happen. Once the fire was out, we let the pie plate, or what was left of it, cool down. We went outside and he showed me where he wants to put our goats. Apparently, we are getting some soon. Then back inside to sweep up glass and wipe up the nastiness of burning. I aired the place out and it is fine now. God is good even when we are not! Thank you, Lord!
Good Friday morning! Matt sent me a text early that I would have to unlock the buildings and feed all of the animals as he was going into San Antonio to the dentist. I had forgotten. I went out before 7am and the weather felt nice, 67° with no rain. I unlocked everything and fed all of the animals. I went back inside, ate breakfast, took care of some problems at the house so I could concentrate and then I got ready for work. By 9am, the temperature had cooled down to 47° and it was raining. So I had to rush out to my greenhouse, turn on the heater and make sure all the plants are doing fine.
I got to the farm store and started putting money in the cash register when two people walked in, our first customers of the day.
Now it is raining a bit more than when they came in and shopped. Linda is pulling orders. Shay is helping out in Jay's building as we needed her to come in today. She will be here tomorrow with me but if the weather is like this and cold, we won't have many shoppers.
We were supposed to plant asparagus crowns that came in late yesterday but the weather is not good for it so we will have to wait until Monday when it warms up.
The trash man just came so that is good. Our dumpster was just about to overflow. It fills up fast and costs us around $209 a month.
I just saw something on Instagram that said this is the week we spring forward with the time. Sure enough, my calendar also says that. This is the weekend I hate the most, the one where we all lose an hour of sleep. Boo! So set your clocks forward an hour on Saturday night so you are not late for church on Sunday.
I got a text from my sister in El Paso saying it is snowing there now. Crazy. I sure don't want any here. We did our time last year!
We have had some wonderfully fun visitors today in the chilly weather. I have enjoyed my visits with each one of them! Thank you all for coming out today in the cold as we brace ourselves for another crazy, cool temperature plunge.
So it is 7:30pom and 44°. It is supposed to get down to 26° now which is insane. It is cold and windy outside. I just had to go outside and try to find my mouse. I thought I left it at the store but it was in a different pocket of my briefcase. So I went out for nothing. We have the heaters in our greenhouses on. I hope they last all night long.
I have been considering getting new chicks, some ducks, and some goats or sheep this spring. Not exactly sure what we will do. David has a spot in the orchard picked out for the goats and/or sheep. Of course, we would need to build a shelter and put up a secure fence before we get goats. First, we need to pick out a breed. David wants meat goats. I wanted some for their fiber and milk.
For ducks, we would need to build a coop that could lock the ducks in at night to protect them from predators. In the daytime, it would need to be open with a nesting area, hay or wood shavings on the ground plus a pool for them to swim in. I have a corner of the property that I think would be good near to the chicken coop.
For chicks, I would like to get a small temporary cage with heaters that I could put inside of the chicken coop instead of in a shed this year. I believe it would be much less messy and smelly to have the babies protected inside the chicken coop from the big chickens.
So these are the options I am considering in the way of animals this spring.
My new vacuum came today from Amazon but it is not together.
Happy early Saturday, Folks! At 6am, it was 27° Fahrenheit. Now it is 7:30am and it is 30° so at least it is headed in the right direction. I checked the weather and it should get up to 61° and it is supposed to be bright and sunny.
It is now 10am and I just opened the store. It is 42° and I already have customers here. Matt and Shay are here to help me. The sun is up, the sky is blue and today seems to be the perfect day to come on down to the farm and shop for your spring seeds!
We have given away some of our asparagus crowns to two local farmers but there are still plenty left for purchase at $2.95 per crown. They must go in the ground by this coming Wednesday or they will die. After tonight, we will be clear for spring planting season.
We had a good day in the store with a steady stream of visitors, not like the first three weeks of the commercial, but it was still pretty good. The day was beautiful and sunny but cold. It got up to 57° and it starting to get cooler again with another freeze tonight. After tonight, we think it will be safe to plant in south central Texas.
I put my new vacuum together and tried it out. I vacuumed the master, living room, my office and the kitchen and I had to dump it twice. David is in the den so I will have to vacuum that half of the house when he is not back there. Our home has not been cleaned in three weeks as the housecleaner decided not to tell me when she was not coming or answer me when I texted to see when she might come again. It is so hard to get people to come out here and work. So now it is up to me again to clean.
Tonight is the most awful Saturday night of the year, the night we lose an hour of sleep! Set your clock back tonight so you are not late for church tomorrow! We have to go through this to get to spring planting season.
So, yes, the time change was bad and I was almost late for church this morning. I had to wait until light to feed all of the animals. It was cold. The VFW was freezing cold but lucky for us that someone rented out the big hall again. We were in a classroom. There was no music as no musicians showed up.
We went to lunch at Salt Grass and then over to Sam's to pick up more snacks for the store. So we have a bunch of stuff to eat and drink again.
Don't forget we have eggs from my chickens for sale. I haven't sold any in days so there are a lot. It seems to be hit or miss with the eggs. Not sure why.
This evening, I made a pot roast with potatoes, carrots, mushrooms, and onions in my Instant Pot and it was spectacular.
We think spring planting season is on now that the freezing weekend is over. Happy Spring Planting Season to all of you!
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