Our adveture begins

Discussion in 'Family Life - Stories, Pictures & Updates' started by Two Creeks Farm, May 7, 2011.

  1. Two Creeks Farm

    Two Creeks Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 23, 2011
    Hedgesville, WV
    Basically, I grew up on a working farm. Parents got divorced when I was 16 and the farm was sold. At the time, I was happy, no more "work" 24/7. Ofcourse years later, I realized that work was the best thing in the world. The wife and I decided that we wanted to try and raise our kids in that type of life so we managed to sell our small home on 1/8th acre and buy 13 acres to start off 2004. 1/2 was wooded, 1/2 field more or less. General clearing and clean up was our focus during the first year. We had also moved out of state to be closer to my dad , but he died in 2004 shortly after we relocated. 2005 I contracted Dismented Histoplasmosis and spent weeks in ICU and almost died....I contracted it from 6 Turkey Poults, the only birds I had contact with. So no birds for me up until a few weeks ago when we decided we should get ourselves back on track, albiet several years after the original plan thanks to the illness.

    In that time I had managed to get some clearing done, and the field areas were disc'd and planted for wildlife, mainly deer which I love to hunt and photograph. This winter I select cut the wooded 7 acres and as soon as spring broke, started like everyone else new to raising poultry, I had to start from scratch. There isn't an out building or shed on the place. I found BYC through a search and dove right in reading thread after thread seeing what I needed to do. While I have raised chicken, pigs, cows and horses, I never had to start with a blank canvas. I cobbled together some small brooding contraptions and got the basic supplies and started getting a few birds in. 6 Leghorns, Some Wyandottes of various flavors, 1 Australorp Rooster, a dozen Cornish Rocks and 2 Mallard duckies. Everyone is doing well and for teh first tme in 3 weeks, all the birds are in their makeshift coops until tomorrow.

    I was headed to buy lumber to build a coop when I got reassigned to shoot (I am a Professional Photographer, but I snap crap during the day without thought to being professional so dont hold me to a high level haha) and was going to be cut short on time. So I ended up just buying a ready made coop to save time. It is 8x8 and should hold quite a few birds.

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    Tomorrow we will be getting the coop in its resting place and attack the run. I plan to freerange but also need a secure run for when I am on the road. I have more meaties coming as well as turkeys next week so time is short as always. Pretty sure we have settled on 1 of 2 locations for the run, leaning towards where the boats are in this image. You may see barns in the images, thats my neighbor. He is the AG teacher at our highschool and raises a few cows for breeding stock and 4H for his own kids.

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    I have so many food plots that basically form the open areas that running several batches of meaties should prove beneficial for the plots and the birds as they are all planted in high quality forage. I stopped using pesticides last year in advance of the attention paid to free range poultry and possibly selling a quantity to offset some of the costs, not to mention its better quality food for the family.

    Out the kitchen window, a few bucks stroll in for a evening snack. The wife grabbed the shot through the screen.

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    Now trying to be self reliant is hard work, but learning is way cool so I am into all sorts of stuff. Milling a few Oak slabs for use in some upcoming projects, as well as selling some larger slabs for mantles has been fun....lots of sweat but fun. We heat with only firewood, it keeps our electric bill under $100 roughly (Thats the goal anyway) The kids are into it all, although I see sometimes that attitude pop up that its allw ork and not fun, but hopefully they will look back like I did when they get older and appreciate it all.

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    I also took up wood turning to make some craft items to add to our piggy bank. It hasnt brought alot in yet, but it has paid for all the equipment I have had to purchase to get started. Bowls, Game calls , Wine stoppers etc seem to be what I do most.

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    Both my boys turn and my 12 year old does well with wine stoppers shown here.

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  2. benjoycei

    benjoycei Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 4, 2011
    Wilmington
    LOVE the bowl!!!! Do you sell them online? Website?
     
  3. Two Creeks Farm

    Two Creeks Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 23, 2011
    Hedgesville, WV
    The wood working has been a blast...but im far from some expert. I prefer the rugged and natural look

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    Deer, Turkey and Predator calls hit home around here and folks love buyings omething handmade that works as well or better then the store bought stuff

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    My favorite thing is mixing what we do as daily life with work. Using your homegrown garden plants as a "prop" for my photography is fun!

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    I set up areas where I could photograph songbirds and other wildlife for sale for prints and for stock agencies. I also provide personal instruction with regards to photography.

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    It took awhile, but the birds finally accepted me and I dont use many blinds or hides unless the weather is bad

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    Last edited: May 7, 2011
  4. Two Creeks Farm

    Two Creeks Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 23, 2011
    Hedgesville, WV
    Quote:No website. In all honesty, I have trouble getting them done as fast as folks want them:D

    We have since 2006 provided our family with the majrity of its "groceries" from our land. Be it deer, squirrel, rabbit, turkey or our gardens, usually every meal is based around our work. I have expanded the gardens yet again this year in hopes of selling some produce to the local area not to mention stocking up even more as the economy is in the tank. Once the coops are built, attention will be turned to some fencing and the addition of meat goats to raise for sale. My oldest son graduates this year and intends on a career in law enforcement, my youngest wants to be a Vet and is in with both feet helping care for the animals. The wife works a regular job that provides the stability any family needs.

    So there it is in a nutshell. Not sure how it will all work out but we wont be going hungry! I seem to keep doing things that mix what I like in life and hopefully it turns enough of a profit to at a minimum pay for our families food needs on an anual basis. I will update this thread tomorrow and as we continually add to things. I figured there might be a few others out there that prefer to do their own thing versus living the "normal" lifestyle that seems to be all the rage these days.
     
  5. Carols Clucks

    Carols Clucks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 13, 2010
    Love the cardinal shot, sure wish we had them on this coast.

    I have a very similar shot taken by a friend in VA that I gave my mom, she loved those birds.



    smugmug?
     
  6. Two Creeks Farm

    Two Creeks Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 23, 2011
    Hedgesville, WV
    Yes, I use smugmug

    Cardinal here are pretty tame, but the Bluejays are tough. I honestly think, well I know, people around here shoot at them to keep them off their feeders:/
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2011
  7. peeplessinNC

    peeplessinNC Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 23, 2008
    NC Piedmont
    I am blown away by your talent and all you have accomplished on your farm! The photos are dazzling and that bowl! Wow! All the best to you and your family!

    Teresa
     
  8. areyoumymother

    areyoumymother Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 9, 2011
    Thank You so much for sharing with the BYC crew. What an inspiration you are !!!
     
  9. CrazyFowlFreak

    CrazyFowlFreak Pine Hill Farm

    Apr 24, 2009
    WV
    WoW! What a story, so glad you're healthy and happy. Beautiful artwork and photography. Do you sell bowls? If so, I would be interested in one or two...
     
  10. redhen

    redhen Kiss My Grits... Premium Member

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    May 19, 2008
    Western MA
    Awesome story! Thanks for sharing.. you do great work. You should be very proud! [​IMG]
     

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