Sunday, December 31, 2017

How was 2017? Goals for 2018

It was a great year.  No one got sick or died.

Seriously, I look through all of my pictures from the last twelve months and can't help but think how blessed we've been.  There have been so many good times with friends and family this year. It's been an amazing time.

I was looking back through my list of goals for 2017.  Mostly, they did not happen.  To the point where it's actually comical.  In the spirit of moving ahead, let's see what did and did not happen and where I would like to go in 2018.  There are going to be some drastic changes happening around here and my primary goal is just to cut myself some damn slack and go along for the ride.

Personal goals. This was the big section where I was supposed to take time for myself:

  • Fishing & canoeing: I did go fishing a couple of times, including including that time when the trout won on opening day of the season.  No canoeing but I think we'll be able to do more of both of these next fall.

  • Biking: YES! We did get one of those little pull behind carts.  It was tons of fun.

2017: The year I cooked a damn groundhog.  It was made into tacos and I was a recipe tester for Hank Shaw's new book Pheasant, Quail, Cottontail. Dream come true.
  • Keep trying new things in the kitchen & keep baking: I think I did great with this, groundhog tastes somewhere between lamb and beef.  Carry on for 2018.
  • Read a book each month: HA.  HAHAHAHAHAA..... nope. Not even close.
  • Possibly 2017 might be the year I take the time to get a haircut: YEP
  • Possibly 2017 might be the year I shoot a deer while hunting: NOPE.  We saw a group of deer but they were too far off.  The deer won in 2017.  They will not in 2018, however. Mark my words.  Deer: I will be looking for you.

Homesteading goals.  This homesteading thing is my hobby and I have a toddler helper.  How did the little guy and I do?
  • Freezer meats: The goal was 25 chickens for 2017. Here's where I tallied up this year's body count. Total birds produced: 28 chickens, 46 quail, 1 goose, 1 duck.  Pretty happy about those numbers. I don't know what I'm going to get done in 2018 but we'll see.  
  • Eggs:  We had tons to eat and share.  I hatched a big batch of peeps and sold them for feed money too.  Pickled quail eggs are amazing.
  • Quail:  Got back into this in a big way with Coturnix quail.  Hatched a ton of eggs, butchered a lot of birds, sold a handful too.  Love quail.  I kept a small covey for breeding and want to start this project back up as soon as they are laying in the spring.
  • Mushroom logs really need re-seeded: NOPE.  I am shelving this project for the foreseeable future.
  • Growing herbs indoors: learned that I really hate houseplants.  This is getting shelved too.

  • The garden: hit it out of the ballpark.  We had piles of fresh produce and lots of beautiful flowers.  I put in a bed of alpine strawberries which are just heaven and produce fruit all summer.  

  • Discovered the joys of fava beans and broccoli raab.

    The garden teepee was just fantastic.  There are plans for a much larger one in 2018.

    Other goals.  
    • Thinning out our stuff:  I did really well with this; a yard sale, trips to the thrift store and really worked Ebay in November and December.  Would like to work harder at this in the new year.  It brought in a little extra money and thinned down the stuff we didn't need: both wins!
    • Kicking ass at the local fair this year.  Oh yes. Entered a baking contest for the first time.  You can see what I entered and won here.
    Dreams.  Things that I didn't expect to happen but would really be thrilled about if they did.
    • I really wanted geese on our property. It happened! I bought a trio of Super Africans for myself an an Embden for the freezer!

    Here are my Africans along with my Pekin drake.  I love these birds so much.  Livestock love not house goose love.  Not that much.

    • It would be really nice to find a foraging class or survival skills class to take instead of just reading about these things.  A (very) long-term goal of mine is to do a months-long pilgrimage hike like the Appalachian Trail when the little man is older. I want to start laying a path to prepare myself.  This is still a goal although the closest I got was finding a couple places near me and subscribing to their newsletters, and picking up another Appalachian Trail book.
    • I wanted to be in a place to think of selling at the farmer's market in 2018.  Not even close.  My goal again for this year is to concentrate my efforts on feeding my family well.  Which is a good goal to have.
    • It would be nice to have a copy of my blog bound as a book. Something to look into this year.

    Comments? Suggestions? Here we go; cheers to a new year


    1. So many lovely goals, we all have wonderful list, which we fail each year, but that's ok, we can move them along. I make my blog each year into a printed book which I love, so do it.

      1. I need to go back to your post about the blog book, you had a lot of good tips in there.

    2. This is such a lovely set of goals. I'm always jealous of Marlenes blog book so I need to do this one as well - maybe we can bully each other into it! I'd love to walk the appalachians, ever since reading a walk in the woods! I don;t even walk the hills here though!
      Survival skills will be a great one to practice with your son, even just fire lighting is an art form many can't master.

      1. I can't wait till he's old enough to do those things. It's going to be so much fun (for me anyway)!