Posts Tagged ‘rural life’

Several years ago a friend whose mother had been in the antique business told me he had a rustic chicken coop that I could re-purpose.  I was skeptical but went to see it.  It wasn’t a chicken coop.  It was a six-bay nesting box that had been thoroughly cleaned and varnished.  I was immediately taken with the piece and decided to purchase it for the princely sum of $15.  I cleaned the piece up a bit more and then tried it out in various locations and for numerous uses.  My favorite was displaying antique quilts in them.  Unfortunately, right now it is not in an ideal location for you to see the rustic beauty and convenient service of the piece, but I’ve included one close-up shot.

I’m thinking a lot of nesting boxes today because we have discussed getting chickens as soon as we get back from our summer vacation.  Imagine my surprise when fellow blogger Polly’s Path told readers that Georgia Farm Woman is having another nesting box giveaway!  Oooh, if I win I can start my chickens for sure late this summer!  Of course, now that I’ve told you, Georgia Farm Woman could have lots more entries for the giveaway.  Go ahead; check out these great modern nesting boxes.  I hope one of us wins!

Copyright 2010 Ozarkhomesteader.  Short excerpts with full URL and attribution to Ozarkhomesteader are welcome.  Please contact me for permission to use photographs.

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Yesterday afternoon my Apple had a catastrophic failure.  It’s something big–like the hard drive or the mother board.  It is especially troubling right now because this is an extremely busy week.  I’ve got an antique PC that I’m using now, but I’m also having to reconstruct a lot of work because (1) I had not backed everything up since the family medical emergencies started over the holidays (yes, that was bad) and (2) my back-up drive is formatted for my Apple, not a PC.  I’m accustomed living where we do, in the rural Arkansas Ozarks, to dealing with internet outages, but losing the whole computer leaves me feeling like half a person.  It’s like part of my brain died.

Living where we do, getting an Apple computer fixed isn’t easy.  The nearest authorized repair shops are 75 miles from home.  If I want Apple to fix the computer, I have to mail it away, complete with personal data.  Argh.  I bought an Apple because they have always been more reliable for me than PCs; it seemed like a good investment.  The only problem is that in the past when I had an Apple, I also lived near an authorized Apple store, where I could have minor repairs done.   Now I don’t; the nearest stores are in Dallas and St. Louis.  Double argh.

Modern life means using computers, but this computer failure reminds me that they become too much the centers of our lives in many cases.  Too often instead of walking outside, looking around at the sky, sniffing for ozone, and feeling the humidity, we call up Weathern Underground or the Weather Channel to see if rain is on the way.  Mr. Homesteader occasionally resents my blogging time, so I’ll bet he’s glad my good computer isn’t working.  Still, I’d rather live with computers than without them.

Computers have changed the way we get news.  No longer are we restricted to local papers and three or four network news channels.  I can read the news from the right and the left and everything in between and use my own brain to sort out fact from fiction.  I can reunite with old friends, even people I haven’t seen for a quarter century or longer.  I can discuss cooking and farming and nature with people from around the US and even around the world.  And for that, despite the obvious downsides to computers, I am grateful.

What are you favorite and least favorite things about computers?

Copright 2010 Ozarkhomesteader.

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Upcoming Posts

We had a busy day and then lost our internet connection (a regular hazard of rural life), so tonight’s post will simply be a preview of some upcoming posts.  I’ve got a darn good recipe for smoked chicken, Southern barbeque style. I’ve got a new, down-sized, lower-fat, whole-grain carrot cake.  Look too for a post on some of my other favorite blogs and their greenhouses.  I’ll also be posting “Can This Pot Be Saved?:  A Cast Iron Love Story.”

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When you live in a rural area, you typically have two standard choices for internet, painfully slow, expensive dial-up or expensive satellite.  The problem with dial-up should be obvious.  The problem with satellite is that, if like us, you are reliant for satellite for television, and you live out of range of emergency weather radio signals and you can’t hear warning sirens, in a storm you can lose all ability to have any warning of tornadoes at all. We are usually grateful to have a tiny local company with these funky cell towers that deliver relatively high-speed internet.  We pay a bit more for it than we would for dial-up but we pay less than we would for satellite internet.  The only problem is that the company only has two part-time employees.  They both have day jobs.  One of them (the real techno geek) has two days jobs.  I noticed the internet was acting up yesterday but didn’t call.  I should have.  By last night, it was gone all together.  Deep sigh.  And they were far away from the answering machine that would have told them that we couldn’t connect.  Bigger sigh.  Oh, well.  At least WordPress has an “edit date” button, although it makes me feel like I’m cheating.

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