Suggestions please, sorry this got a little long

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by ChickenTender63, Oct 31, 2008.

  1. ChickenTender63

    ChickenTender63 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 28, 2008
    Alamance, NC
    Ok folks, I think I have seen some of this info on here before, but just can't find it right now, so thought I would ask again.

    As some of you that I have been chatting with know, I have had a rough year that has made for some very life altering changes for my wife and I, which we are very eggcited about, and in the long run, will be very beneficial fo rus.

    I have had a couple of surgeries this year, and the last one was a spinal fusion in July. I just found out yesterday that the fusion has more than likely failed, the bone graft has failed to regenerate but we are waiting for the report from the radiologist to come back before we say for sure. If so, this will likely mean another surgery down the road to redo it. I have been researching online today about this, and most resources indicate that they won't do another surgery for about a year from the last one so I may be very slow for a lot longer than we wanted to be.

    We have recently lucked into a 12 acre hobby farm from a co-worker of my wifes. It was her families homeplace since 1950, and they finally moved her mother out of it and into a condo about a year ago. Everything on the farm needs work, quite a bit of it, but that's ok. My wife and I plan on this being our final homestead and we will retire and die there. The house is small, and needs work, but will be comfortable.

    We have always been country people, so this isn't new to us at all. Adding chickens is new, as will cows, pigs, and goats. I raised New Zealand rabbits while growing up and we sold those for meat to customers and groceries, as well as being our main meat supply. I truly appreciate the kind folks that are full of incredible information on this board the short time I have been here, and I truly appreciate all of the help and encouragement you have given so far.

    Since it appears that I will now not be able to return to work for lord only knows how long, I am really forced to try and get my farm up and running in the shortest period of time to try and supplement our food supply as well as being able to sell various things produced at the farm to generate some additional money so my wife doesn't have to keep working overtime for the next five years, as shes not getting any younger either.

    We have down sized as much as possible over the last year so that we can live off of her income while I was off work for these surgeries, and we are hanging on by the skin of our teeth. It is a stressful time, but we have each other and are happy. We are fortunate to have found this farm because it will help cut our expenses even more as the rent on it is only $550 per month for the whole thing and it is a lease/purchase option, so when we get back on our feet, we can buy it. My wife is good friends with this family and they wanted to give us a good deal on it so that they knew they had someone there that would take care of it and love it the way her family has since 1950, and we really feel blessed for that.

    Since I will not be able to go back to work anytime soon, my thoughts were to sell my homemade goodies, baked goods, homemade cheeses, eggs, processed chickens, homemade candies, pies and cakes to help bring in some additional money. These are all things I have done for years, and always just gave them to our friends at church, or would send them to work with my wife to give to needy families at work (she is a burn nurse). Folks have always wanted to buy these things from me, but we were never in a position where we needed the money, it just made our hearts happy to make it with love and see someone smile.

    So, my thoughts were, if I can continue to do these types of things, and create a market for them both locally and maybe online, I should be able to offset her income enough where she can slow down a bit and relax so she doesn't get burned out. I don't have to make alot, but if I could generate between $500 & $1000 a month from farm activities, that should take some worry off of us both.

    Do you all think this is an achievable goal? Are there any websites out there that I could create a free "Farm Blog" of daily activities, pictures, and products available to order? I have a few people from church starting to buy items, and I have a few locals ready to buy eggs when we get out to the farm soon and have everything set-up for egg production. I just need to get the word out there a little wider and I believe I can make it happen. Maybe I can send some samples to some of my BYC friends I have been chatting with to give y'all a taste of what I can do.

    I am not looking at getting rich with this, I just want to pay the bills and live a self-reliant lifestyle. It was a direction we wanted to go in for awhile, but just haven't had the opportunity to have the land or ability lately, and now we have been blessed to have that fall in our laps. Even though we will be roughing it for quite awhile, we are going to be really happy out there.

    I am sorry this has become long, but I appreciate your patience getting through it. I just don't know what else to do at this point, because I have been turned down for disability and the attorney says that he can get my case won no doubt, it is a three year process getting it into court. So that doesn't help us out today. The two of us have always been extremely hard workers, we are only in our mid forties, live a healthy lifestyle, I am a Desert War Vet, and it is stressful not knowing if I can provide for my family like I have always been able to do. While DW is working, I take care of the house work, and have a warm dinner cooked for her everyday when she gets home so that she can eat and relax, and not worry about any of that.

    I truly appreciate any ideas or feedback you folks can give me on how to make this work. I am just stumped on it right now.

    Take care everyone!

    ETA: I grew up in the middle of Amish country and it has always been in my blood to be able to do these types of things to be self-sufficeint. I am really eggcited to be slowing down and getting back to those ways. The 16 hour days, 7 days a week working in the corporate world after the military sure didn't get me anywhere, so I might as well slow down and enjoy what God has given us to work with!
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2008
  2. Zookeeper9000

    Zookeeper9000 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 1, 2008
    Gladstone MI
    Go for it I think that is a great idea. The best part is you can start at home and the expenses will be low at first and grow with your business.

    I will keep you and yours in my prayers. God bless.

    One other thing. Thank you so much for giving us our freedom by being in the service of our country. Hang in there.
     
  3. Chicabee19

    Chicabee19 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 8, 2008
    n/a
    Congratulations to you for making this decision! I envy you guys, and hope everything works out well with your health issues.

    There is an online store that seems very popular. I learned about it from someone on BYC who sells stuff there. We're thinking our daughter will sell her art.

    Here is the link: http://www.etsy.com/
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2008
  4. ChickenTender63

    ChickenTender63 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 28, 2008
    Alamance, NC
    Quote:Thanks chicabee, I will check it out!
     
  5. Chicabee19

    Chicabee19 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 8, 2008
    n/a
    I volunteer to be your long-distance taste-tester. [​IMG]

    I mean, you do want to make sure the stuff you bake is really, really good, dontcha???
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2008
  6. ChickenTender63

    ChickenTender63 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 28, 2008
    Alamance, NC
    Yes I do chicabee! Do you like chocolate covered carmels too? I make several different kind of carmels and then dip them in either milk chocolate or dark chocolate, and they are yummy!

    I am going to make another batch of those tomorrow and can send you some samples next week.
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2008
  7. derby

    derby Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 18, 2008
    Boonsboro, MD
    Definately work on getting a website. I think you can do this.

    Thoughts and prayers for happiness and success!

    Derby
     
  8. ChickenTender63

    ChickenTender63 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 28, 2008
    Alamance, NC
    Thanks Derby, I think it will work also. I just need someplace I can start a free website for now anyways so that people can see.

    I think going this route is my best option. Since soem days I can do more than others, and if I am having a painful day, then I just take it easy and feed the chickens and turn on chicken tv and relax some, then get back to it again.
     
  9. Felicitas

    Felicitas Chillin' With My Peeps

    You can get a nice-looking free blog at Wordpress (http://wordpress.com/) and post your items there, linking it to your Etsy store. I have done that to some success, and I haven't even really tried all that hard (I update my blog and my Etsy store only rarely). The great thing about Wordpress is that you can set 'tags' on your posts, and when people search on the word you've used as a tag, your blog comes up. You'll get lots of traffic that way. Good luck!
     
  10. ChickenTender63

    ChickenTender63 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 28, 2008
    Alamance, NC
    Quote:Thank you for the info, I will check it out also!
     

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