A New Year and a New Start

| 1/30/2012 1:21:33 PM

Ann Larkin Hansen shows that typically mundane tasks like record keeping and planning can be a satisfying process that can help you reflect on the successes of the year before.  Chapter eight in her book, The Organic Farming Manual, covers the importance of record keeping to maintain a successful farm. Check out this great blog post to see the successes that Ann saw last year. 


The Farming Year Begins 

            “To everything there is a season” and January is definitely the season for paperwork. I need to compile last year’s farm records – receipts, records, and notes - into the big ring binder that holds the diary of all our farming years here. Then I’ll know what got accomplished – or not – in 2011, which is the starting point for planning for 2012.

            Once all the paper is in a pile and I start putting things in order, the high points of the year play back in my mind. After 30 years of digging the garden by hand (I know, I’m crazy) I finally bought a rototiller last spring and took it on its maiden voyage last May. Wow. I love good machines.  

            Summer was wet, wet, wet, and the result was the most massive first cutting of hay we’ve ever had – beating our previous record by 50%! The only problem was losing a roller bearing and the internal race on a roller on the round baler. Fortunately I was able to hire a neighbor to finish the baling, and then it took another neighbor and I two weeks to figure out first, what was wrong, second, how in the heck you get 6-foot long steel tube out from under the belts at the top of the baler without killing yourself or dropping it through the inside of the machine, and third, how to get it all back together once we got the right part. This involved two old wagon tongues, some logging chains, a tow rope, and some precise maneuvering. 

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