Lots of the old farms around here are in real bad shape and the one that had the auction was no different. The very nice lady told us her husband had passed away a year or so ago and she was moving closer to the big city (Springfield) to be closer to her kids. Her house and the immediate yard were as neat as a pin and you could just imagine all of the family memories they contained but the barns and out buildings were in bad repair and lots of the equipment had sat for years. You might think it was a depressing scene but like so many of the hardy people we have come to know around here she was very upbeat and the prevailing attitude is this is part of life and I'm off to the next chapter; I hope I can be as stoic,
We have been looking for thing to get our new pole barn shop up and running; mostly we are looking for shelving, cabinets, work benches, a parts washer, tire balancer, tire rack etc. We have two shops and the one attached to the house is fairly well equipped but the new pole barn is spartan.
These three items we got for about $3.00 total. The little bookshelf will hold my shop manuals (and with as many vehicles and equipment we have I have a bunch), The metal shelving unit will be rebuilt and hold various cleaners and fluids, and the unit on the right is a cupboard under a heavy duty Formica work top with a couple of shelves above...and its a heavy son of a gun.
This little rolling bench (it has caster wheels) cost us $0.50 and will get cleaned up and a new top affixed and will be perfect for a place to put tools and parts while working on equipment. You can just roll it around as you go. Most of this stuff could have been built by us but not for that cheap and its kind of pleasing to have these older things with their implied memories and their working patina.
We gave a couple dollars for this old block that I imagine was used in the old barn to bring up hay into the hay mow. We already have several from our own barn and we didn't need it but it just has a pleasing look to it and I cant resist these old things. For the price I know I would have regretted it if we hadn't gotten it. It has "Meyers O.K." cast into it and I am trying to find information about it. The obvious thing was that O.K. stands for Oklahoma but we haven't been able to find a community of Meyers and its odd to have the periods after the O and K for Oklahoma.
As you can see its well worn and I am guessing its from the mid 20th century.
So what is this? This wasn't from the farm auction but we found it at an old store and gave a couple bucks for it. I'm not much for pinups even in the shop but we collect old advertising and this was something that stood out. She isn't nude and shows nothing (she is wearing a long chiffon dress) but its classic 1940s pinup art. The date on the back says 1948 and its amazing to look at this photo and think that was 64 years ago; this young woman would now be in her late 80s at least.
This is another photograph we picked up. Its hard to see but she is dressed to the nines and standing next to an early 1950s Chevrolet Bel air and we suspect it was part of some type of advertising of the time. It too will go up in the shop.
But its not all farm auctions. Crops are still in full swing and our watermelons are ripening in stages and we are selling them and eating them...
Cantaloupes and passion fruit have done well even in this heat and we sure enjoy their fantastic flavor.
These berries are Elderberries and we didn't even know what they were until a short while ago. We thought they were a weed bush and we almost cut them down but an old farmer showed us the difference between Elderberries and Poke berries (which are poisonous). For some reason we have a bumper crop but we don't really know what to do with them yet.
Next week we harvest apples and will can them. We have one pint of last years canned apples left so we don't want to let these go to waste. None of them are real big but they are sweet and juicy and they add a much needed element to the winter diet.
And we are still awash in Tomatoes. We have canned stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce of various types and now we gave Salsa a shot using our hot peppers, our tomatoes, our onions, and most everything else except the Cilantro because ours burned up in the heat.
It is the best salsa I have ever had. Even after the canning process (we had to open one to try it out you see) it tastes of the fresh ingredients and its just the right level of hot. I like really spicy things but the gals don't so this is a nice compromise.
Now that the heat has abated somewhat the critters around the farm are a lot happier. We have wild turkeys everywhere and they make a showing all the way down to the barn yard. Come hunting season you would think there were no wild turkeys in Missouri. People say they are dumb birds but that sure hasn't been my experience.
The barn cats all like the cooler weather too and there has been a lot of playing going on when they should be working at killing mice and moles. We will let it slide for now.
And finally, the long suffering Maybelle has finally recovered from her eye infection and been released from isolation and rejoined the herd, She literally jumped for joy when we opened the gate from the isolation pasture and its fun to see such an animal cavort around and kick up her heels.