Posted by & filed under Permaculture.

Women Farmers can succeed

Women Farmers used to have a negative connotation, were overworked and not always appreciated.  Florine was a Farmers wife for over 50 years,  She would get up at 4:30 am, when she got to sleep in, and went to bed between 11 pm and 2 am.


She not only milked the cows, sold the produce and meat, but also made the meals and cleaned, did laundry and baked Cakes and other pastries to help her make an income.

They made quite a bit of money during those 50 years, bought more and more land to help grow their income and their outreach into the community.  But they also started having physical ailments due to overworking.


To be successful, do you need to overwork your body to be a successful Farmer?


Look at the following statistics and see what you think were you want to be.


Most farm households earn the majority of their income from off-farm sources and off-farm income is expected to increase by 3.0 percent in 2011, to 51,889.

In contrast to the general farm household population, households associated with commercial farms (those with gross sales of $250,000 or more) derive the majority of their income from farming activities. Their median income from farming increased by 11.5 percent in 2010, and their total household income increased by 11.3 percent, to $117,854.


Households associated with intermediate farms (those with gross sales less than $250,000 whose operators consider farming their primary occupation) also saw a substantial increase in total income, 11.6 percent, though it reflects greater income from both farm and off-farm sources.


See the farm typology discussion below for more information on intermediate and commercial farms.

Mean farm household income was $87,780 in 2010, up 13.8 percent from 2009, and was driven by increases in income from farm and off-farm sources. Mean income is higher than median income because the farm operator household population contains some households with exceptionally high incomes, which increases the mean more than the median.

Median farm income, median off-farm income, and median total income of farm operator households, by farm typology, 2009-11f

provide by the 2007 Census of Agriculture United States Data

 What this Data indicates is that Women are the Fastest growing sector in farming.  Those that Focus on Farming, whether it is Ecological Gardening, Permaculture or Aquatic Farming, those who consider Farming as their main occupation tend to make double that in income as those that are focused on farming as a hobby.

We are here to help you become successful and stay healthy.  Women have proven to not only be successful Farmes, but also tend to be more Ecologically informed.  Follow us by joining us by adding your name and email address to get the whole story.

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Posted by & filed under Animals.

They were use to getting their exercise chasing each other around the field, now they were going to enjoy trying to get me off their back.


When I first started training horses by myself, my previous encounters of riding did not really prepare me for the Horses that I got hired to train to quit bucking and to mellow them out.


I was thirteen years old, and the horses had not been ridden for more than three years, and they had not been outside of the arena with a rider on their back as long as the owner could remember.


They were great horses, they enjoyed the brushing and feeding and care I provided.  They picked up their feet well, and after the second day, I had even saddled them all and rode them around the arena.


I was beginning to think that this would be a piece of cake!  then the second week, it was time to take them outside.

The first horse bucked a little bit once outside of the arena, but settled down real fast and started enjoying the trail that I took them to.  The next two horses were great!  No Bucking, just an enjoyable ride.

The 4th horse, Sonny,  burst into a bucking bronco routine as soon as his body was outside of the arena!  He was telling me that he didn’t care too much for my idea of going exploring away from everyone else.

I landed hard on the ground, managed to hold onto one rein, and as soon as I was off of his back, he stopped and looked at me.  I thought he was laughing at me.  I got up checked the saddle  and reins, then got back up on him.  He let me on easy, but tried to head into the arena.  I was quite a bit more weary, ready for the jumping and twisting, but I was not quite ready for what he did next.

You see, about 50 feet away, there was a 5 foot retainer wall made of old railroad ties, and we were on the uphill side.  As we got about 10 feet from the wall on our way down the driveway to go onto the trail,  Sonny decided to go into his routine again.  This time I thought I was ready, until while he was kick up his rear legs, he slipped over the railroad ties, but was able to stop right away.  My saddle had slipped a bit during the exercise, but I was able to jump off quick.


I was blessed that Sonny stopped with his front end on top of the ties and his rear legs on the lower section.  I removed the saddle, then coaxed him down to the lower level and walked him back up into the arena and checked him out. I think he was a stunned as I was that neither of us had gotten banged up at all!

I place the saddle back on him, and we walked around the arena for a bit to make sure he was ok.  His legs all felt the same, no temperature difference between any of the legs, no bumps, no cuts, Just a healthy excited horse.


Now me on the other hand, I was ready to take a break for the day, but the owner of the horses came out and told me good job on the ride, and to make sure that I got back on right away.  Oh well, I thought, we both (Sonny and I) have to learn together the hard way I figured.

This time, I checked all of my rigging outside of the arena and got back on.  I was tense as was Sonny.  I was not ready to trust him, and I was sure that he was not ready to trust me.


We made it down to the trail head, started out for a “real short ride” so that we would end with a good “win”.  As soon as I clicked to ask him to speed up, he started bucking again.  This time I stayed on and he decided that he would allow me to ride him.  Went back to the Barn, brushed him down, walked him out and spent some time talking to him and thanking him for starting to trust me.

That was the last horse of the day for me though, I think I had grown more than Sonny had as far as understanding horses.  I was a bit rattled with all of the bucking and drama associated with it,  but it also showed me my purpose with these horses.  The end goal was to be able to have anyone ride them on the trail, but the way to get their was to be able to build a relationship with them and get them to enjoy the “Ride”.


Sonny would still buck every now and then, so on trail rides, I would go with him.  It took me about two months before I trusted him enough to relax.  That is probably why it took Sonny about two months to also quit being tense and start to enjoy our time together also.

Since that time, I have learned how to build a relationship with the horse that I am working with, as well as learning how to run a farm in a profitable way.  From horses to growing Produce, there are many ways to make your farm and Ranch not only pay for itself, but allow you to build the life of your Dreams.


I hope that you too will enjoy the “Ride”.

Tell me about your first time on a horse, and share with others your journey!

Turning Your Dreams into the Life of Your Dreams

Chris Downs, the Caretaker

Founder and Ambassador of Natural News and Sustainable Living on How to Live on

Posted by & filed under Animals.

You know what it is like, you buy a horse,  take great care to ensure it has everything that it needs to be healthy, but your new friend still refuses to come to you.  So there you are, running around the paddock to corner your animal so you can “catch” it to go for a ride and ‘enjoy ” the western experience.

Do you like chasing the horse?  NO.  What can you do to get your horse to come to you?

Well, you need to ask yourself a couple of questions first!

  1. What is the purpose of this horse in your life?
  2. Do you want to spend the time and the money to keep it happy and healthy?
  3. Do you know what this breed needs  specifically?
  4. Now the most important question of all!  Are you willing to take the time to listen to the horse, hear what he or she needs, and build a relationship with the horse, letting the horse know what you need and want from them also?

Once you learn how to communicate to him or her, you can be still while they come to you for that loving relationship that they crave.

Be Calm,  because if you don’t, the horse will be more than willing to knock some sense into you!  I know from experience, but the joy and peace from a relationship with your horse will bring you many years of mutual love and admiration.


It is hard to focus on your problems, when you are serving others.

Turning Your Dreams into the Life of Your Dreams

Chris Downs, the Caretaker

Founder and Ambassador of Natural News and Sustainable Living on How to Live on

Posted by & filed under Plants.

We live at 6,900 feet and a high elevation winter can be brutal. We seem to always have at least a couple of weeks of -20 to -40 degrees.  There are a few things you need to know first about selecting your plants at high elevations whether it be annuals or perennials.

First you must know where the plants you buy come from.  If a plant comes from a lower or sea level elevation they may not due too well.  When we first moved here in 2005 we brought a lot of house plants.  It took two years for them to acclimatize to this elevation.  This may show up as annuals that don’t really get to hanging over in your hanging baskets, or perennials that seem to survive but not thrive for a couple of years.

Here’s a little tip you should know also.  The plants that are perennial at lower elevations are not at higher elevations. Even though the tags say they are perennial DON’T BELIEVE IT! 

Places like your local hardware stores, or grocery stores will sell plants that say they are perennial, but they do not survive up high.  Always purchase your plants locally from a Nursery that you know, like and trust.  You may also learn how to protect your plants and increase your output by learning how to Garden Ecologically.

The next thing you should know is if you want a plant or shrub to survive the first winter, it may need a little help.  The growing season in higher elevations are shortened significantly,  this shorter season means some plants may not have had time to “settle in” well. 

The first year insulate completely around your plants with leaves.  I was able to get 100# coffee bean bags from out local coffee bean roaster.  Do NOT use plastic.  The tips of your plants will be dead in spring any where they were touching plastic.  Make sure you cover COMPLETELY, and watch the weather.  The plants need to be covered BEFORE the thermometer dips too low.

Turning Your Dreams into the Life of Your Dreams

Chris Downs, the Caretaker

Founder and Ambassador of Natural News and Sustainable Living on How to Live on

Posted by & filed under Organic Gardening.

Starting my new organic farm has been a bit overwhelming.  There is so much to learn as well as new skills to gain.  As a woman, I wanted to ask for help.  I have found many people who are willing to help.

I use to feel overwhelmed about my New Organic Farm!

As a Woman, how do you get the help and knowledge to create a profitable farm?

As I have gotten help from neighbors as well as forums, my confidence has increased.  My husband has been helpful and has been able to join me in my new organic farm.    One of the concerns that I had was finding other women that would know that I am going through.  I did some research and this is what I discovered.

Most farm operators are men.

About 11 percent of principal farm operators are Women.

This  represents a significant increase from as recently as 25 years ago, when about 5 percent were women.

Women generally operate farms that are smaller than average.

Once primarily focused on beef cattle Women Farmers have diversified their farm operations over the past two decades to include horses, aquaculture, and fur-bearing animals.  Add to this the Organic Gardens both Urban and Rural, Women Farmers are a growing community of business entrepreneurs!

More than 40% of Farms, report more than one operator, and, in most of these cases, the additional operators are women.

When all operators are considered, more than 30 percent of U.S. farm operators are women.

Join our community where you get all of the help you need.  If we do not know the answer, someone from our community will and we will research it for you and give you options.   You can also get a free book: Beginners guide to small scale farming just for signing up for our newsletter.   Join me as I continue to gain knowledge and skills on our New organic farm.

Posted by & filed under Permaculture.

Who in the World am I?

My name is Chris Downs, and I live in Colorado.  I am a unique individual created by GOD to fulfill HIS purposes for my life.  I am made to enjoy life, be prosperous and along with YOU, am here to Re-plenish the Earth, subdue it and have dominion over everything (except other people) on and of this Earth!



Gen 1:27 So God created man in his [own] image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.


We were created by God to have a life that honors him and gives HIM Joy!  He Created us to live life to the Fullest Passions and Experiences.  Each of us was created for HIS Purposes!  What is on Your Heart?  What is Your Passion?



Why are we here?


Gen 1:28 And God blessed them, and God said to them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living animal that moveth upon the earth.


Gen 1:29 And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which [is] upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in which [is] the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for food.


Gen 1:30 And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every animal that creepeth upon the earth, in which [is] life, [I have given] every green herb for food: and it was so.



Live a life of Joy, Exploration, Learning, Enjoy the Harvest that has been Planted and Protect and multiply a world of “More than Enough”.


Why were we Created?

As our own children and accomplishments give us Joy and happiness, our obedience and accomplishments that honor God bring HIM Joy and Pleasure!



Gen 1:31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and behold, [it was] very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.


Gen 2:15 And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden, to dress it, and to keep it.

Turning Your Dreams into the Life of Your Dreams

Chris Downs, the Caretaker

Founder and Ambassador of Natural News and Sustainable Living on How to Live on