Blogs | Living the Country Life


October 27, 2015 | Betsy's Backyard
Bob and I took a load of 23 lambs to Colfax (IA) Livestock Sales last Saturday. The barns were as full as I've seen them in months. Lots of sheep and goats are going to market for the holiday season. Our lambs averaged 135 pounds and brought $1.51...see all
October 20, 2015 | Betsy's Backyard
We marketed our first lambs of 2015 last week, taking five to the Indianola locker and 24 to Colfax Livestock Sales Co. The lambs were born in April and grew quickly. The Colfax lot averaged 138 pounds and brought $1.55 a pound. Bob is taking...see all
October 12, 2015 | Betsy's Backyard
A walk down the lane and around the pasture brings great peace and beauty in the fall. The ewes line up in the morning sun to see who is invading their pasture. The pond is full and healthy. Back at the house, Bob has lined up his hay...see all
October 5, 2015 | Betsy's Backyard
A splash of color in the front yard is such a cheerful greeting. Fall colors are really starting to pop. Bob uses an apple peeler to make thin layers for apple crisp. So many apples this year... Janis Gandy, copy editor for Living the...see all
September 29, 2015 | Betsy's Backyard
Every fall for the past 21 years I have released an exclusive report on the swine industry called Pork Powerhouses. It includes a ranking of the largest 25 pork producers in the U.S. To celebrate the release of the report I flew to North Carolina...see all
September 21, 2015 | Betsy's Backyard
There are still tons of apples on the tree at the pond. Bob is using the fruit picker pole to snag the highest apples and those hanging over the pond. I have two huge bags of apples waiting for me to cook down for applesauce. I will make another...see all
September 16, 2015 | Betsy's Backyard
Somehow, somewhere, Bob found more hay to bale and a corner of the barn to house it. Besides a fourth cutting of alfalfa at our place, which was green, wet, and heavy when stacked in the barn (we'll use it quickly), he baled the empty industrial...see all
September 9, 2015 | Betsy's Backyard
Early fall is such a busy time on a farm or acreage. There is so much to harvest and so much to kill. We started with the thistles in the pasture. Sure, the yellow flowers were full of bees, but those noxious weeds had to go. We cut them and threw...see all
September 1, 2015 | Betsy's Backyard
Bob finished plugging every nook and cranny of the hayloft on August 13th (above). It was our 32nd wedding anniversary, so I remember the date. Last week he baled the west half of the pasture and filled two baskets and five racks. That hay was...see all
August 25, 2015 | Betsy's Backyard
All the rain this summer turned my (so-called) landscaping into a jungle. Vines covered the lilacs and bridal wreath spirea on the west side of the lawn, even climbing the nearby evergreen to the top. I could see poison ivy hiding in some of the...see all