Being on the farm now for a year and a half or so, I’ve learned to recycle and reuse a lot more than cans and paper. Sure, we’ve bought some equipment new, but it’s always rewarding to make something on the cheap that works pretty dang well. Being out in the country with the closest big name retail store 30 miles away, you learn to make do with what you have.
There isn’t a Super Walmart or Home Depot close by to get inexpensive tools or supplies at. Back when we were living in the city or even the suburbs in Illinois it was so easy to just go run to the store for something. I remember one weekend in Chicago my husband walked to Menards, 4 times one Saturday because he kept forgetting to get something, or needed a different tool or something else broke… It was 3 blocks away, probably like walking from the barn to the house now! That sounds heavenly to me nowadays (at least when we need something). The stores “in town” are 15 min away and have small town hours where they close early on weekends or worst case, they aren’t even open but one weekend day. They usually don’t have a great selection and even though I support local when I can – prices can be double a big box on expensive items like a wheelbarrow. Thus, my trusty “bin with a string!”
We had a large amount of snow last year and walking through it seemed hard enough, not to mention trying to get a wheelbarrow through it. With chores to be done, I grabbed the bin that our chicks spent their first 5 weeks of life in and tied a string through some pre-drilled holes by the handle. Bin on string has been my favorite makeshift tool. I find it extremely useful for moving wood from the wood pile to the house, collecting sticks and down branches, cleaning out the chicken coop, dragging waste to the compost pile…the uses are endless. It works in snow and on grass or hard dirt.
While it was something I came up with in a pinch, I use it all the time!
My husband and I have had to come up with some creative ways to get things done around here and those experiences (like knocking a tree off a hill with the snow plow…) have made our lives so much more exciting and valuable.