This is David & Susan Sifford's journal of what we pray is our sojourn of life (Hebrews 11:8-10) along the narrow way (Matt 7:14), even the old paths (Jeremiah 6:16), submitting to the Bible as a light unto both (Psalms 119:105). It is our prayer that these documented moments in our earthly time benefit whom God might choose to edify, but ultimately that God glorifies Himself through them.

Month: July 2014

Providence’s Perpetuation Provisions: 2014 Fourth Chick Hatching

The Lord has continued to be gracious in granting us broody hens, and here is the next hatching! We believe she hatched out 8 and we lost one early, but the other 7 are still going strong!

Fourth Hatching of 2014 Chicks

Here is a video of them a few weeks ago, and from a few days ago, in the chicken pen area where I moved them, and where the 2nd and 3rd group are as well:

We are always very grateful to God for His granting continued hatchings and healthy chickens!

— David

Garden – Spring 2014 – Update I

It’s been a couple of months since our last garden update, and so we thought we’d show the latest from the garden!

Here is some of the first produce the Lord granted!

First Garden Produce 2014
More First Garden Produce 2014

And here, we’ll show you around the gardens from early in July. In our 2014 wheat blog post, I mentioned that we had planted turnip seeds back last year, and that nothing had grown. Well, a couple of months ago or more, God granted somewhere around 7 1/2 inches of rain in a few day period; and lo and behold, a bunch of turnips sprouted! Here you can see them (again, early July) in Garden 2, along with the green beans on the right:

Green Beans & Turnips, Early July 2014

And more turnips in the raised beds. The ants started getting to those, so I have since pulled them and fed them to our pig (they were really small):

Turnips in Raised Garden Beds, Early July 2014

Again from early July, the zucchini:

Zucchini, Early July 2014

The corn:

Corn, Early July 2014


Tomatoes, Early July 2014

And in the hugelkultur bed:

Tomatoes in Hugelkultur Bed, Early July 2014

The following from just yesterday. We’ve been eating the greens from our turnips in salads and sandwiches, and we hope to start to preserve them by lacto-fermentation, which would be our first attempt at that with turnips:

Beans & Turnips, 3rd Week in July

Also, I mentioned in the previous garden blog post that I thought I might try planting okra. I believe I planted them the next day, and none germinated. And so, I tried again, and here are a few that have started!

New Okra, 3rd Week in July

And here are the tomatoes:

Tomatoes, 3rd Week in July

And again, in the hugelkultur bed:

Tomatoes in Hugelkultur Bed, 3rd Week in July

The corn:

Corn, 3rd Week in July

And zucchini. We’re getting to the time with them where the inner leaves start to die and any further growth starts occurring farther from the root. We’ve had a lot of flowers, but not a lot of actual fruits, which to me is interesting (apparently other folks here have had some similar issues), but of course, we are thankful for what the Lord has granted:

Zucchini, 3rd Week in July

And here’s another okra:

More New Okra, 3rd Week in July

And here is a lot of the produce being lacto-preserved:

Lacto-Fermented Preserved Garden 2014 Produce

As always, we are so very grateful for the food the Lord is granting us through the gardens; the rains he has brought, with His direct watering, and allowing us to have water stored to water the gardens; and the mulch garden beds, which has allowed for a lot less watering and allowed me to water areas of the gardens without having to monitor the watering minute by minute.

— David

Providence’s Perpetuation Provisions: The Goat Kids of 2014

I know it’s been a bit since our last post, but it’s been extraordinarily busy around here, with seasonal chores to attend to; and so, thanks for your patience!

Back in November, it was time to start the goat mating process once again (with a 150-day gestation period, this usually puts the kidding to after freezing temperatures). We have two bucks, and we separate our older does with our buck Shatner:

Nubian Buck Shatner

And the next generation does with Rocky (posing with my brother Kevin when he was visiting back in April):

Nubian Buck Rocky

And lo, after 5 months, by God’s graces, many kids were born! Here are a few pictures of the lot of them. Nine does gave birth to 17 in all — 9 bucklings and 8 doelings, although we sadly lost two of the bucklings in the first few days:

2014 Goat Kids
More 2014 Goat Kids
Some More 2014 Goat Kids
Yet More 2014 Goat Kids
Further More 2014 Goat Kids

Here’s a kid relaxing with a chicken in one of the sheds:

Goat Kid & The Chicken in a Shed

Besides the losing of the two bucklings, this goat season was also interesting in a couple of other ways. First, we lost our Nubian nanny Betsy during the winter, although not from the cold because it wasn’t cold when she died. She had had a lump on her throat for several years that sort of just sat there; but it did seem to change a couple of weeks before she died — got spongier; so maybe something happened with that. Here is Betsy and her kids from last year:

Our Nanny Goat Betsy and Her Kids from 2013

And secondly, our nanny Minnie, who was our first born on the land from Winnie, died two days after giving birth from what appeared to be complications in the birth. Here is Minnie from last year with her kids as well:

Our Nanny Goat Minnie and Her Kids from 2013

It was quite sad to lose them both, but we always pray we have the proper attitude toward the things the Lord has provided to us for our use.

Here is where Betsy and Minnie were first introduced back in 2008.

And so, with Minnie dieing, we had two orphans on our hands again (here is where we had orphans the first time). That’s Pearl (in honor of Minnie — think Hee Haw) in the back, and Tiger (because he sort of has tiger-looking colors) in front:

Orphan Goat Kids Pearl & Tiger

This is Sue and Kev feeding them:

Bottle Feeding Orphan Goat Kids

Kev also helped me move goat sheds back when we separated nannies from Shatner and Rocky:

Moving Goat Sheds in the Spring

The Lord had graciously granted a very nice gentleman to be interested in buying our entire kid herd last year, and he was interested again this year, and here we are prepping the area to load them up:

Preparing Animal Trailer for Loading the Goat Kids

And finally, here is the kids of 2014 video. It’s a little long, but it includes introducing each of them and their sires to you, bottle feeding the orphans, letting them eat (including the smaller amount of wheat we ended up receiving this year) and roam around our inner field and barn area, and when we said goodbye to them after getting them loaded in the trailer:

As always, we are very grateful to God for granting the kid crop of this year; the health and safety He granted for them; the trials He brings in order to glorify Himself and we pray mold us in His image; and now for the provisions of the very healthy milk, which is really why we keep goats in the first place.

— David