2017 was our first year completely separate from our old Chatsworth farm which was sold for the second time (to good and decent folk) in December 2016. Gone was the income from a variety of sources such as livestock and equipment sales, as well as the extra expenses like two sets of mortgages, utilities and farm upkeep.
We only had to worry about The Poor Farm in 2017. We also had just one regular income-Keith's off farm job- and my small nursing pension plus some cash from pork and beef sales and some Facebook sales of other farm paraphernalia we discovered we did not need, like extra livestock waterers. All in all, we were able to pay our bills and not generate extra credit card debt. We were not however, able to add significantly to our savings.
Which brings me to our new (old) barn. I'll cover those details in a future post, probably towards summer as the barn is completed-we hope. The project definitely ate up what we had set aside from the sale of the Chatsworth farm for it's build -$5000-as well as a good hunk of our minimal savings. But as Gemma Teller Morrow said in the truly awful final scene of season five of SOA, "It had to be done".
Finishing the barn will occur as money makes itself known. Some supplies will come from the original 1856 house (see above photo) as we begin tearing it down, by hand, this spring. For example, we plan to build the barn's loft from the recycled house floor boards. 2018 will be a productive year I am sure.
Budget wise, we expect no significant increases in income but plan to continue decluttering and selling the last of the leftover bits and bobs from the old farm. I also remain hopeful that we can still whittle down some expense areas such as gasoline use, grocery store expenses, (we have big garden plans, our biggest ever) and the ever troubling "miscellaneous" column which includes Christmas gift giving. We must MAKE more gifts this year!