2021 Goals!

Better late then never- and hey, I’m actually ahead of where I was last year! Also – Happy April!

Once again- I’ll be treating this as a list of goals and a general update on the farm because multitasking. In fact I’m cooking pasta as I write this. It’s bound to explode in my face.

1. Start the process of moving our trailer- there’s a method and a madness to this. When we first moved this trailer here, there wasn’t as much cleared area as there is now. We also were just trying to get here and get on the land as quickly as possible. Ifen you’re really interested in the backstory, the links are here, here & here.

Now that we’ve been here a few years, we’ve decided that we don’t really like how this is set up- for plowing, for a garage, for a mud room addition and a deck. So- we’re taking our tax return and putting in a new pad and moving the trailer. Like 150’ from the original spot and at a different angle. We are insane. But there’s so much more possible when we move it. Right this moment we are hampered by the literal boundary line on one side and also the proximity of the shed on the other side.

So this year is(hopefully) – build the road, bring in fill to build up and level out the area we’ve chosen and hopefully get the new septic in.

2. Get Stormie back to his normal self – it’s been a rough winter for Stormie , and if you happen to follow us on Facebook, you’ve been able to see that as we’ve struggled to keep him alive. This is not hyperbole- I found him hypothermic more then once. We think we’ve finally kicked the tapeworms butts and he hasn’t gone down in over a week as of this blog. But he is still severely underweight. All of rest of the herd has gotten quite plump because of the diet I have Stormie on- and he alone gets supper. But it’s a long road ahead of us- he’s still in a jacket until weather gets a little milder. We’re having a lot of heavy winds and overnight chill offs. So I guess once Maple Syrup Season is over

3. More perennial gardens and work on strawberries – we’ve got a bunch of elderberry starts and two new witch hazel bushes coming. We have some different herb seeds to plant into raised beds and We’re burning the strawberry area as soon as we can. We think it may kill the overgrowth of weeds from the last two years and give the plants a chance to come back so we CAN actually save them. It’s a now or never situation at this point it feels.

First little peak of Rhubarb!

4. More selective clearing & using the sawmill – this is very exciting. MrGillis was able to get a good amount started last year. He bartered a bunch of cedar poles for hay last year And we have four more piles. Also were going to need some rough lumber for more gardens beds, the winter pig shelter (next goal) and the new meat bird brooder house because they aren’t going back in the shed. Lastly, the more we clear back there the closer we come to the ULTIMATE GOAL.

5. Move pig pasture & raise winter pigs – beep beep winter piggies comin thru. I explain this a little in this blog about our third year of raising pigs. I may go into it further in another blog down the way. But we got a lot of work to do- moving fence, building a really solid shelter, lining up extra hay… even just deciding if we’re going to commit to raising pigs for other people because we’re unsure of the new variables introduced with winter rearing.

6. bee time – immersion into the world of bees. At least one hive has made it and I want to really get cozy with them this year. It sounds weird but I’m going to go and start talking to them once a week. I just sit and talk to the herd and the flock daily- why not the bees too?

7. Expand Etsy – were already up to 50+ listings with 8 sales & 2 five star reviews! This is after only 4 months on. And the Etsy shop has actually brought me 3 LOCAL sales as well. I’d like to be up to 200 listings by the end of the year.

8. Get yarn made – this goal was originally last years but it was not fated to be. Between the lack of festivals and the uncertainty of everything, we just couldn’t take the financial risk. But this year is looking up, and we’ve decided to use my credit card as a way to loan the business some money. So yarn will be made. Hopefully I’ll have it on Etsy by June.

9. Work on inside of shed – this will be later this year after harvest, and maybe even more of an early ‘22 goal, but it’s on the horizon. We don’t actually have a ton left to do in order to have it presentable. The roof is so shiny and beautiful. Any updates I’ll be sure to post.

10. More raised beds, more cold frames – we love raised beds and cold frames no fricken joke. I can’t ever imagine going back.

Already building one and th

11. Look into doing the butchering of our own pigs – LOOK. Meaning find out the cost of equipment, maybe go and help someone take care of a pig. I’m not even sure how far into this goal I want to go yet. I actually have a hard time sending the pigs every year. I’m hoping with a few more years of chicken processing under my belt, I’ll be less broken hearted over it. Maybe.

12. Be more consistent with web content – I’d love to start blogging once a week or so again. And with Issac fast approaching 3 – baby no more- I could make this happen. Its always back and forth for me. Sometimes I just don’t feel like I have anything to say. Hard to believe if you know me in person.

I’ve really slept on IG lately too.

13. Potty education for Issac – it’s a work in progress but as of this blog he’s been out of his cloth diapers for a week & he’s only having a couple accidents a day instead of the ten or more of the first few days. I expect it to be an ongoing process, but we’re not going back. I’m in the process of donating my cloth diaper stash. And I hate disposables so much.

14. Expand on the knowledge I already have- I want to become a much better herbalist. And of course keep building on my knowledge of animals, bees and homesteading. Get better at my various crafts too.

Alright! How’s that for biting off too much again?

Until next time, have a wicked good day!

Published by gillisgardensllc

This is the official website for Gillis Gardens, LLC. Gillis Gardens is a farm, run by myself and my wonderful husband. We believe in biodiversity, organic growing methods and doing things ourselves. I knit, crochet, make jewelry and sew. MrGillis builds, doing everything from our plumbing to our mechanical to our renovations. We are both active members of our little community. We both take care of the plants and animals. He weeds, I harvest. He spreads manure, I plant. We raise multiple breeds of chickens for eggs and meat. We have a herd of Alpacas that we shear every year for their beautiful fiber, which we then have milled into ultra luxurious yarn. We make our own maple syrup, preserves and pickles. We raise bees for honey and herbs for medicine. We also raise pigs for meat and fun. We are the parents of two young children, and consider that our most important job. Follow our adventures here and also on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter.

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