A Heifer Named Herschel? {And Pregnant Cow Vulva Pictures}

I tell ya, life ain’t easy for a girl named “Herschel.” Cow 101: A “heifer” is a female cow who has not had a calf. So tiny baby girl calves are heifers, and grown female cows pregnant with their first calves are also heifers until that first baby is born. All that for free, folks. […]

Starting Baby Chickens: 9 Things You Need

A few weeks ago (I think, I truly have no concept of time these days) we received our order of 50 Cornish Cross baby chicks from Murray McMurray Hatchery. As I was running through my mental list of baby chick gear, I decided to look back though Joel Salatin’s book, Pastured Poultry Profits. (Great book,  […]

Fridays on the Farm: Food Preservation

Well hello there! Now that I’m no longer pregnant and have recovered some of my energy after having the baby, we are back at it on the old homestead. (Well, Farmer Dickie’s been at it the whole time, I should say I’m back at documenting things…) It just so happens that it’s also canning time, […]

Homestead Emergencies: And the Importance of a Good Homestead Network

This is a guest post on “Homestead Emergencies: And the Importance of a Good Homestead Network” by my friend Erin from Homesteader Hub (of Blue Yurt Farms fame). Meanwhile, I am busy writing up Baby Girl’s amazing birth story- I can’t wait to share it! There are a lot of reasons why it’s great to […]

How To Start A Homestead

We’ve been “homesteading” for a little over three years now. What started out as a desire to live intentionally and garden has escalated into chickens, two pigs, a dairy cow (or several), and meat chickens. Not to mention about an acre of garden space and a greenhouse. Chickens are a gateway animal, I tell you. […]

Elsie Marley’s New Calf (Jersey/Angus Cross) and a Cow Update

If you’ve been following me on Facebook or Twitter for, oh, say the last two months, you know we’ve been eagerly awaiting the birth of Elsie Marley’s baby. Elsie Marley is our Jersey cow, who recently gave birth to her third calf, her first since coming to live at Whistle Pig Hollow. We originally thought […]

An Ode to the Siphon

I’m not going to lie to you. Things aren’t always easy at Whistle Pig Hollow. Sometimes things are downright hard. For instance, the pigs might escape from the pen in the middle of a rainy night. Or you have to cull your old laying hens. Or you accidentally kill all your seedlings in your greenhouse. […]

Frugal Homesteading

Photo Credit: Flickr Creative Commons Attribution, Ervins Strauhmanis, Edited 2014 Homesteading ain’t free, y’all. In fact, it’s not always even cheap. The animals, the feed, the fencing and other infrastructure, the heirloom seeds, the greenhouse. The time. It can all add up pretty quickly. We’re not independently wealthy (bummer!). I left my career as an […]

Whistle Pig Hollow To Do List: March 2014

You know I love to get a to-do list in writing, and you know I love subjecting you to reading it… From January’s to-do list, we’ve accomplished mostly everything. (I still have to go get some milking lessons, but other than that we’re good.) So it’s time to add some more items to the agenda. […]

Winter Work Clothes for Ye Olde Homestead

So, I’m freezing. It turns out I’ve managed to live in Tennessee four winters now and still have not purchased appropriately warm [yet functional] outdoor work clothing. I like to blame this on the fact that I haven’t really been doing actual outdoor work most of those years. But, as we’ve slowly and incrementally grown […]