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Posted 9/1/2011 6:57am by Julie Hurst / Roy Brubaker.

Who was it that said the only thing that is constant in life is change?  No doubt many have made that observation.   I have trouble keeping up with the naturally occurring changes that I have no control over like the seasons' swift phoenix dance of death and rebirth or the rapid growth of children!  The girls started 4th grade yesterday and came home so excited about all the new possibilities for the year ahead.  In-School music lessons for band were the big news of the day.  

Here at the farm we are going through a good bit of self-imposed change as well.  Several weeks ago we had feed bins put on our barn hill.   Why does a farm that sells 100% grassfed meat need large feed bins?   Pigs and horses.   The price of grain continues to rise, as does the price of gas, so rather than continue to bring home hog feed in 100 lb. bags stuffed into the trunk of Roy's Ford Focus, we decided it would make more sense to buy our grain in bulk at a reduced price.   It might take a long while for the grain bins to pay off, however, when you include our time running back and forth to the feed mill, it all begins to seem worthwhile.    To keep the grain fresh, we now buy it whole rather than ground.  Whole grains are not as efficient for the animals to utilize so Roy has been experimenting with soaking the grain to make it sprout.  The pigs have been very enthusiastic about their soaked rations, but then again, pigs seem pretty enthusiastic about everything.   Of course I sometimes suspect I am misreading their "enthusiasm" for food and really they'd just like to run me down and gnaw on a leg or perhaps use me as their soccer ball.

Frances informed us immediately that the feed bins were ugly and that she'd prefer to everything to stay the same on the farm.  Riley noticed the ladders on the side and started to climb and soon her sister was "racing" her to the top.

We also have a renovation project going on at our house.  Like most century old houses, ours had no closets and very tiny bathrooms.   This renovation will wrap the front porch around to the side where we will put a small business office, increase the size of our upstairs bathroom, and give us a little additional storage / study space.    It is not a huge project but it is dusty and loud.  It is quite amazing to watch skilled carpenters move between order and chaos and back to order.   Right now we are deep in the chaotic, dusty stage.

Frances told us this morning that she does not like the change to the house and would prefer if we had left well enough alone.  Riley watched without comment as a small bucket-dozer destroyed the little porch that has been attached to the side of our house their whole life.   Then the bus pulled up and they buoyantly dashed off to their second day of 4th grade.