May 2018

Dear Friends:
May and warm weather have arrived.  Didn’t we wonder but never doubted God’s wisdom.
The real work of the summer season has begun.  The first flock of “fat” chickens is ready to process on May 12th.  We lost way too many before getting this bunch to this point.  The cold and wind didn’t help much.  The June bunch have fared much better and the July ones are little yellow puff balls in the starter house.   I’m glad the sun shines warmly and the pastures are green.  The chicken will grow faster and taste so much better on the nice mixed pasture.
The boys tilled our two big gardens today and I plan to plant most everything tomorrow.  Most of the fields planted to corn around us are showing little green shoots now so things are coming up and seeds not rotting in the cold soil. Some of the local farmers were planting soybeans this weekend. We’ve had some little showers here so the soil moisture is just right.  We pray God continues to shed his grace on our undertakings.
If you have flowers doesn’t it seem the tulips didn’t last very long and the peonies are pushing far ahead.  I try to have something blooming all the time but I better scoot if my zinnias etc. are ready to bloom before we have a vacant place without blooms.  My knockout roses suffered winter damage I think.  They are leafing out finally bit not with any great amount of leaves and lots of dead branches.
One never know what will show up with a telephone call.  A neighbor called about wanting to sell some cattle.  Normally we wouldn’t be interested as most of them were black but when he quoted the price the guys jumped on it.  In the deal is a nice Jersey milk cow so guess I’ll be milking in the next few days.  not enough to sell but enough for family, for now.  Bob is welding up the stand in the dairy barn and two Guernseys have calved and one not too far in the distance so perhaps we will be milking and able to sell cream line raw milk.
Am painting the logos on the walls of  our little store in the Red Barn.  My husband has finished the cabinets for the store and we will install them soon.  The big cook stove is clean and ready to hook to propane so we can bake and can.
We have one senior graduation this year so will go to his big night on Friday.  He has a great future plotted out and we pray he finishes it.  He certainly has the talent to do so.
Coming up in June is the Missouri Cattlemens Steak Fry in Sedalia.  They have an auction to raise money for various events and so I am beading some bracelets and a hat band using a loom and glass beads.  I think they are pretty.  Also am sending a Ristol black felt hat for the auction.
Wishing you a wonderful spring and if you garden may yours be the best ever.
Virginia      Missouri Gems-Toole Farms