We’re in the midst of a pretty big decision here

which we haven’t finalized yet. Most of you know what a combine is, in the context of farm equipment – those big paddlewheel monsters that rumble across fields of grain to harvest them. This past week, we became aware of a small one for sale not far from us. At first I looked at it like a kid looks at a toy in the toy store window – “oooooo, neato, gimme!” And had this been 2011 or 2010 or some prior year, I would have gone and borrowed the money to buy it without hardly a second thought. But no, we don’t do that anymore. I emailed Jan late last week and told her how tempted I’d been to get it, and how hard it had been to resist doing so this time, but that this time we were going to do things differently. So over the weekend, I brought up this piece of equipment with DH as a potential addition to the farm; in short it would be a game-changer for us. It would open up all sorts of new crops for us to grow, it would turn our considerable feed bill into a memory, and it would open up new markets for us. But it would also be the single most expensive, complex, challenging implement we’ll ever own. Something akin to going from flying a Cessna single engine pondjumper to flying the space shuttle. So there’s a lot riding on this decision. And we’re going to take our time with making it. We have a big hog sale coming up in March which will give us the funds needed for this purchase if we decide to go that route. Of course I had other ideas for how to spend that $$$$ so we’ll have to consider which is the best overall use of that income. I don’t know how that decision is going to go yet. But I do know that in previous years, I wouldn’t have done all this evaluation of pro’s and con’s; I would have just gone and bought the darn thing and lived with the consequences. Thanks, DR, and thanks to everyone on the list, for teaching us a new way to make such big, important decisions. I’ll keep y’all posted.

Congrats on the baby!!!

Yes, most of what is out there you won’t need for the baby, the companies just market it so new parents will feel guilty for not keeping up with the Jones family—and you know how I feel about those Joneses, they are up to their eyeballs in debt.

Good luck with your family, you seem to be on the right track, but it is difficult.