May and June on the Homestead (+ My Husband's Accident)

The vegetable garden in June.

Well. It's been a bit since I updated you here on the blog, and there's a lot to tell. First, let me explain why I didn't give an update for May; it's our "dry month" on our homestead. There are no fresh crops to harvest and we are only eating preserved fruits and vegetables. And since these monthly updates are primarily about how much produce I'm growing on the homestead, I decided to just skip that month. Then June happened.

June was unusually cool, and the garden wasn't doing much. Which is probably a good thing, considering what happened to my husband.

One of my husband's friends ("J") lives at the very end of our rural road. J invited my hubby to come to his daughter's wedding reception, which was taking place at his home. My hubby went, looking forward to hanging out with some friends, eating some good BBQ, and having a few beers. When it was time to go home, there was no way he was going to drive, so he decided to walk his scooter back home. The road is windy, narrow, and steep - plus it was dark out - so he made sure to turn the headlights on his scooter. The motor, however, was off. Well, he didn't make it very far before he fell. He doesn't remember all the details, but he thinks he tripped and the scooter twisted around and pushed him down hard. He may have blacked out, but we're not sure.

He remembers thinking he had to get over to the side of the road and that he'd just have to wait there for someone to find him. Thankfully, as he was trying (emphasis on trying) to crawl out of the road, a careful driver spotted him. We have so many people who drive way too fast on this road, so the fact that this driver found him is a huge blessing from God. He easily could have been run over by a speeding vehicle. 

In the ER.


Even though this section of road usually has no cell service, this careful driver was able to call 911. My husband was also able to unlock his phone for her and ask her to call me. The call came through perfectly. (Later, when she tried to call her boss to tell her why she was late, she struggled to get a signal. Yeah, it was a God thing.)

I was at home in my PJs, having a lovely time with my kids, watching a movie and then just chatting. When the phone call came, I didn't recognize the name, so I let it go to voicemail. Thankfully, a minute or two later, I checked to see if a message was left. That's when I got the message no wife ever wants to hear: "Your husband had been in a serious motorcycle accident on [road name here] and he's being taken by ambulance to the hospital."

I was absolutely - to the core - terrified. I feared the worst.

As I hurriedly got dressed, all I could think or pray was, "Please save him, Lord. Please save him." Over and over and over and over again.

When I found the accident on our road, I really expected to see my husband dead or nearly so. Instead, I saw him sitting up, leaning against the his fallen scooter, holding a towel to his head. There was blood everywhere. One whole side of his face was all injury and one eye was swollen completely shut. He was speaking with a man from the fire department, who got there before the ambulance or Sheriff's deputy. I said a prayer of thanks and approached him. The first thing my husband said was, "I'm so sorry. I am okay. I'm okay."

The fireman made me step aside because, as he said later, he didn't want me to see the extent of my husband's grotesque injuries. Once they bandaged him and were sure he was somewhat stable, I came over and held my husband's hand. He said he'd had some beer and didn't want to ride his scooter home, so he was walking. I told him he was an idiot and that I loved him.

Not long after, the deputy arrived, then the ambulance. All were sure my husband had been driving drunk because his injuries were severe and there was blood all over the road. I told the deputy it wouldn't be in character for my husband to drive drunk. As the deputy later learned, the engine wasn't hot, the scooter wasn't damaged, my husband didn't have injuries on his hands, and guests had seen him walk away from the party, pushing his scooter. His story about how he was injured sounded incredulous, but it was true.

A family friend drove me to the ER, where I waited quite a long time in the waiting room, praying and asking for prayer from friends and family and this blog's Facebook community. I think it was a couple hours before a nurse came and got me and let me sit in my husband's room. He was in terrible pain (writhing, in the fetal position), but when the nurse asked his pain level, he said "Four." I told the nurse to give him more pain meds.

When I finally spoke to the doctor, he said my husband had broken the bone just below his eye and that an eye muscle was pinched and strangulated in that break. He would need surgery or there would be permanent vision damage. They needed to life flight my husband to our state's biggest city and our most renown hospital. 

As they prepped my husband for this journey, I went home to two worried teenagers - still awake. (I'd been updating them by phone.) It was about 3 AM. I went to bed, wanting to get a couple of hours of sleep before I traveled four hours to the hospital.

Long story short, an eye surgeon performed emergency surgery to extract his eye muscle from the bone break, then inserted a plate in his bone, to prevent the muscle from shifting into the break again. They released him from the hospital the next day. He was wheeled away not just with the eye injury, but with a huge flap of skin on his forehead stitched back in place, stitches inside and outside his mouth, a broken tooth, a cracked tooth, a partially numb mouth, and a concussion. As you can imagine, for the first week or so, he needed help with almost everything. (Not his favorite thing!)

This was about 11 days ago. Today, he looks and feels better. His eyeball, which was pretty much black (and startled every doctor who saw it), is beginning to lose that unnerving color. His swelling is way down. His forehead wound is nearly dry and we think we can stop bandaging it soon. He is walking around a little. (And is bored out of his mind. The other day, he told me he was going to take a ride in the side-by-side. I told him, "NO.") It's still almost impossible for him to use both eyes together and the ophthalmologist who did his surgery says he'll likely need another surgery or two to get his eyes lined up right. How much his vision will be permanently affected is still unknown.

But there is much to be thankful for. It could have been much, MUCH worse.

Pardon me if I'm an emotional mess.

And there's still income to be made (solely by me) and a homestead to run (ditto). I'm managing the best I can, but I know some things will just have to slide. 

As for the homestead, it's moving along...slowly. July seems to be bringing warmer weather, so that should help the garden. Spring conditions were wrong for plums, so there's no fruit in the orchard yet. (Which may be a blessing, because I'd be stressing out about trying to preserve that fruit if it were there.) I have rabbits I need to butcher, my rabbit doe is experiencing a false pregnancy (I think; either that or one of her kits inseminated her at 8 weeks of age!), everything needs mowing, and I am exhausted. It's an excellent time to remember to lean on the Lord. He is so good.

Bell peppers are starting to appear in the greenhouse.

Now, for some better news. For a long while, my husband has been encouraging me to create some homesteading t-shirts. So for the past couple of months, I've been working to make that happen. My daughter created a design to go with my homesteading motto ("Start where you are/Use what you have/Do what you can") and I did tons of research trying to find the best place to have the shirts created. After messing around with many websites and ordering t-shirts from multiple sources, I finally settled on SpreadShirt.  

And now I'm offering t-shirts for men and women, plus an apron, hoodies, a bag, mugs, and a sticker. If you'd like to help support this site, plus get a fun item to use, this is a great place to do so! You can see all the offerings in our store. Here is just a sampling:


June Produce Totals:

At this time, we're mostly eating produce that I preserved last year. Even so, we do eat fresh food from the garden during the cold months; this month, however, we used up the last of the fresh produce. To learn more about how and why I am keeping these totals, click here.

Snow peas.


Radishes and leaves: 3 lbs. .67 oz.

------------> $66.67 conventional (no organic option available at my Walmart)

Snow peas: 4 lbs. .22 oz.

------------> $20.55 conventional (no organic option available at my Walmart)
Buttercrunch lettuce: 1 lb.
------------>  $11.92 conventional  (no organic option available at my Walmart)

Egyptian walking onions: 13 oz.
------------>  $8.19 conventional  (there are no walking onions at Walmart, so I chose to compare them to shallots; no organic options at my Walmart)
Egyptian walking onions.


Saved in June:

$107.33 if purchased conventional (no organic options available this month)

Saved in 2024 so far:

$329.29 if buying organic and $217.16 if buying conventional.


2024 Gardening Expenses

Walla Walla onion starts: $4

Cherry tomato start: $5.49 (a single plant and a hedge because the new-to-me-variety of cherry tomatoes I started from seed were looking less than robust)

Potting Soil: $47.96 (primarily for potting up peppers in the greenhouse; some will get used for flowers, too, but I won't try to parse that out.)

Organic snail bait $17.96 (I had to use more of this than is typical because we had such a cool, damp spring)

Total gardening expenses so far: $75.41

Total savings minus expenses in 2024: $253.88 if buying organic when available; $141.75 if buying conventional

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