We've Got Chickens

Daniel is a very happy child, but he won't smile for a picture to save his life. He's really excited about the chickens ...

chick1

Here's Abigail feeding them something ...

chick2

That cage thing they're in is called a chicken tractor. You pull it around your yard and let your chickens graze over different areas of the yard. Those chickens are about three months old, so apparently we're still another three or four months away from them laying any eggs. I guess we're farmers now.

Making Progress In Podunk

With a wife who's eight months preggy, and with me working full time, unpacking has been slow going. I'd say we're about 60 percent unpacked right now. We're making progress, though! We're still using pokey dial-up, but I think we're going to try satellite Internet out pretty soon -- maybe within a week or so.

Tomorrow some friends of ours are delivering eight hens and a rooster to us. They'll be our first official livestock.

Liberty and Servitude

I first lay down these two propositions, concerning spiritual liberty and servitude.

A Christian man is the most free lord of all, and subject to none; a Christian man is the most dutiful servant of all, and subject to everyone.

-- Martin Luther

Two Shots

For the time being we're on dial up, and it's quite pokey. I did take the time, though, to load two small photos. One of them is a bridal portrait I shot tonight, and the other is a photo of one of my favorite country scenes driving toward our house.

thebride

thescene

Back Online ... Sort Of

We finally got Internet today, but it's ultra-pokey dial up service. I'm thinking we'll sign up for satellite high speed service next week. Dial up is horrible ...

Initial Thoughts

We still don't have Internet at our house, but it's ok because we're spending a lot of time unpacking and getting things in order. Here are a few random thoughts on living out in the country:

- Saturday night was nice and quiet; it was very peaceful. Sunday morning the only vehicle I saw on the road outside our home was a tractor. :-)
- Brandi said, despite all the unpacking, she feels like she's on a vacation, but the vacation is her home. She's enjoying frequent walks through the neighborhood and we get great views of sunsets (and sunrises!), and lots of beautiful country landscape.
- The other day two random goats were in our yard. They must have escaped from a neighboring farm.
- I killed a black widow spider the other day.
- Coming from a city life, it's ridiculous how big two acres is. We're loving all of the elbow room. If you walk to the end of our property (it's close to a forest) you feel like you're in the middle of nowhere, especially at night.
- Speaking of the forest, we finally heard a pack of coyotes howling and screaming last night. Apparently that's not an uncommon sound out in the country.
- Brandi and I relaxed on our trampoline last night, using it as a hammock. The night sky was beautiful. I even saw a shooting star.
- We've still got a lot of work to do!

Moved

We've moved but we don't have Internet at home yet. I've emerged just to say we love our house -- we LOVE it!

Oh, yeah, I also did a mini post over at Thinklings.

How I Met Vito

Yesterday this older fellow in a golf cart rolled up my driveway and introduced himself. He asked me if I was the guy who had bought the house, and I told him that my wife and I had closed on it a few days earlier. He then told me that he had lived on that street all of his life, and that it's a good, quiet neighborhood with only minor "hell raising" now and then. When I asked him about what he was talking about he said something about kids speeding up and down the street in their motorcycles and muscle cars.

After a few minutes he told me that he had a crop of black-eyed peas in a field adjacent to mine and that he was on his way to check his peas. He promptly hit the gas in his golf cart and rolled through my lawn to access his peas. I thought it was funny how he was just so whatever about driving through someone's lawn, but Brandi told me that's the way country living should be. I always thought country living was about actually shooting the dude who was trespassing on your property. :-)

Anyway, he was a nice fellow. And he had some kind of serious sound system hooked up to his golf cart with a CD player and everything. I think he's probably the Don Corleone of my new neighborhood and he was coming to tell me that he wanted me to wet his beak.

Above And Beyond

When we started on our house search we had certain "requirements" that we wanted in a house: three bedrooms and two bathrooms were about it. Our "wants" list was more square footage, an office area, a spacious laundry room, at least an acre of land, and enough room in our kitchen to keep our deep freezer. Of course, we didn't want to get a loan we couldn't afford, so our options seemed limited.

Tonight Brandi and I recounted all of the extra blessings we have with our new place:

- Instead of a laundry room, we have a roughly 100 square foot utility room with cabinets, a rack for hanging laundry, a sink, and a door to the outside (it's also adjacent to the kitchen, which Brandi loves).

- We have a huge walk-in pantry with enough room to horde canned goods for years.

- It's a four bedroom house, which allows us to have an extra room as a guest room.

- We have a 200 square foot second living area which we'll utilize as a homeschool room and study.

- We have an enormous living room with a good-looking fire place and lots of windows.

- We're blessed with two acres of Texas land with great soil. Yee Haw!

- We've got a 500 square foot detached metal building (we call it "the shop," see the photos below) that was only built a few years ago.

- The land also comes with a ratty old two-car carport (we call it "the shed") which many of our country friends have told us we could easily convert to a barn.

- The house has a durable metal roof (a definite plus!) and attractive stone siding.

- A fixed rate loan with a 4.875 interest rate!

- Last but not least, we've got a couple of beautiful oak trees and a pecan tree.

- Oh yeah, one more thing, we're getting all of that for only $40 more per month than our current rent payment. We're amazed. It truly is a buyer's market out there.

We're very happy with our new place!

Here are a couple of photos of the shop ...

shop1

shop2

And here's a photo of the back of the shed ...

shed

Population 922

The little town we'll be living in only has 922 residents. Once we move you can make that 928. We're still in the Waco Metropolitan Statistical Area, and our address still says Waco ... but we're definitely out in the sticks. We apparently can't even get standard Internet service out there. Our choices for Internet are 1) dial up, 2) satellite, or 3) a PC card via AT&T. Despite those problemos, we're going to be very happy out there.

Today I spent a lot of time at the house doing general maintenance like turning screws, sweeping, spraying for bugs, and things of that nature. A friend of mine came over and told me that the piles of dirt out in our field are not ant hills (as we suspected) but gopher mounds. Yes, we have a plethora of gophers living in our back yard. The aforementioned friend is a country bumpkin himself, so he suggested a few "fun" activities like setting bait out in our field at night and waiting for coyotes to venture close to the scent, and then -- BANG! -- you blow them to bits. I don't think I'm quite there yet. Besides, all I have is a BB gun.

Tomorrow I'll be doing more of the same around the house, and we'll be moving some fragile furniture in the afternoon. The big move day is May 9. I'll keep posting updates.