Tuesday, July 1, 2014

A few things.

Donald came home the other night with a surprise for us. He found a baby turkey all alone on the dirt road. It just sat there and let him walk up to it and pick it up. We kept it in the house for a few nights until we knew it was eating and drinking and would live. Today the kids put up a separate pen in the chicken coop for it to live in. It is quite a noisy little critter. Never thought we would raise turkey, but thats the fun of living on a homestead. You never know what is going to happen next.

This morning I headed down the hill for ladies bible study then came home to finish up mowing the lawn that I didn't get to the other day before the rain hit. I got the last couple sections finished up and decided to try out my new large sized muffin pans. I was looking for some new breakfast ideas for Donald to take to work with him.

YUM! It was hard to not try to taste test every kind. I make banana chocolate chip, Chocolate chocolate chip, strawberry cream cheese, and apple pie strudel. I am pretty happy with the way they turned out. Now Donald can keep some in the freezer at work and if he doesn't get to eat before he leaves the house he can pull out one of these goodies. Of course, there is enough for some to stay home for everyone else to enjoy too. Off to clean the kitchen now. It is a pretty big mess after all this variety.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Around the gardens

Just a quick picture update of the gardens and a new project or two.

A happy greeting by the front door. I have two of these lovelies, thanks to my dear husband who convinced me that I should buy the pots even if they were more than I thought I should spend. He said, "You'll never find others that you like as much so you should go ahead and get them." So glad he convinced me. I really do like how they look.

 The upper garden section is coming along quite nicely. I keep adding on and adding on. In a couple years I should have a beautiful garden area with walkways built up nicely. goal now is to get some moss growing on the concrete blocks.
Today I replanted my asparagus seeds as the chickens got in and dug up all my starts. I also planted brussel sprout seeds today. I am new to both of these veggies, so it will be fun to see what happens.

 The tomato's took over the garden area this year as every seed I planted came up amazingly enough. I ended up planting 17 tomato plants. (I also gave away quite a few)

 This is the newest project. This area is along the driveway. I want to build just a short wall and turn this area into flower gardens.

The wild roses are in bloom all over the property right now. No matter where you go in the yard, you smell the roses. It's heavenly!!

It's true!

Cats really do like catnip, a lot. Our kitty Cloe found the pot of catnip and I can hardly keep her out of it. I never would have guessed that they liked it quite as much as the rumors say they do, but it's true.

There have been a couple times that I had to actually pull her out of the plant as she was trying to lay in it and was threatening to knock the whole thing over.

Life on the homestead is always entertaining. And you never know what form that entertainment might come in.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

March 26, 2014

It is starting to feel like Spring might actually show up at our house this week.

Our robins are here and singing their evening song. One of my most favorite nature experiences.

I love that they sit in the very tops of the trees (so much easier to find them) and sing their hearts out. No better song could accompany the setting of the sun.

Today I had to do some more re-potting. I needed to do a whole lot, but I ran out of dirt, so I re-potted my jalapeno peppers, bull nose peppers and my amish paste tomatoes. That added about 18 more pots to my little table. I absolutely love seeing these things take off. The growth and health that we will be able to appreciate and eventually harvest is so much fun to watch.

Some of the pepper plants I re-potted.

The table is filling up.

Yesterday the porch was finally clear of snow, so I was able to get out there and sweep it off. It was piling up with wood chunks and saw dust from our firewood that we store on it. It really felt good to get out there and do that. We have running water in our frost free by the chicken coop again! Yea! Its a step in the right direction. At least now we don't have to take the water tank to town every other day to fill it up. We were able to run a hose from the frost free to the tank and we can keep it full that way now. Still no water to the main system, but I am sure if this warmer weather holds up (55* yesterday!!!) it won't be much longer. 

As a side note, I happily found the sound track to Anne of Green Gables the other day and I tell you what, it is the perfect music to enjoy as we welcome Spring to our home. It is very cheering and uplifting. I sense a movie marathon for the girls and I in the near future. :-)

School is moving right along. Wesley seems to be getting over his severe dislike for writing, so that is a huge win for us for this school year. It has been such a battle the last couple years. But we are seeing much light at the end of that tunnel. Praise God. 
*On a side note to that, I highly recommend the book called "Educating the Well Trained Mind." There is so much good and helpful information in there.*

Not much else to report here. Just the regular every day stuff to do.

Have a blessed day!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

March 22, 2014

First, I am happy to say that I did get my bread done two days ago. Yay for  fresh bread. Meghan bribed me a little. "Mom, if I do all the dishes  will you make us homemade bread?" We had been given a few loaves of that bread that has all the nuts and such in it and it is not Meghan's favorite. So since we have no running water, and we were still waiting for our new pump to show up (which we now have!!!) washing dishes is quite a big ordeal. So she did the dishes, and I made 16 loaves of bread. I sold 4 and gave away 2. We should be good in the bread department for a while :-)

When I went down to the pantry to get the flour to make bread, I found 3 onions that were starting to get soft, so I decided to dice them up and threw them in the dehydrator. Boy did the house smell GOOD! Between the baking bread and the drying onion it was heavenly.

I did finally get my recipes all transferred over to my recipe box and I found all kinds of fun recipes that I haven't made it quite a while. Last night I decided to make Bacon and Egg soup served in homemade bread bowls. It was a major hit. Everyone enjoyed it. I was told that I definitely had to make it again. I was surprised at how easy it was to make the bread bowls. I just took my easy french bread recipe (the prairie homestead) and divided it into 5 equal parts, shaped them into balls and baked them. The crust on the french bread held out really well to the broth of the soup. My family loves homemade bread, so this was well accepted by everyone. And, did I mention it was EASY!

Today, Hadassa is with Donald doing her field course for hunters safety class. She was so excited for this that she woke up the first time at 6:00 AM. Silly girl. But I am glad that she is enjoying it. I should have some pictures for tomorrow's post. 
Have a blessed day.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Hello Spring....

On this first day of Spring, I sit in my cozy house, knowing its 28* outside and the snow is gently falling. We have accumulated almost two inches since last night (on top of the 6" we accumulated 3 nights ago) and it doesn't look like its going to let up very soon. I am spending the morning looking at things that actually remind me of Spring as I am feeling a bit down this morning. I did learn a new word today:

Agrarian: Of or relating to farm or farming, characteristics of farmers or their way of life, organized or designed to promote agricultural interests.

After I found this word, and the meaning thereof, I looked it up on pinterest and there are some amazing boards under this title. That is where I am today.
You can see the view from my desk in the picture above. Also you can see how big my garlic is getting. Though they look a bit wilted from insufficient watering yesterday. I've already transplanted my tomatoes once since I started them. I am beginning to think that I am going to quickly run out of space if I can not get some of this stuff in the ground in a month. The ground is still frozen solid and we still have no running water. But, I am happy as long as I can have a day now and then to waste away enjoying the beauty of nature and Spring, even if it is through pins on other peoples boards on pinterest....

Enjoy your first day of Spring!

P.S. Just so you all know, I will be making 16 loaves of bread today, so I will accomplish something productive. :-)

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

March 18, 2014

Yesterday and today have been exciting as I have conquered a project that has been hanging over my head for probably 5 years or more. The dreaded recipe organization. I did really well with this right after I was married. All my recipes were written on index cards and stored in a card box. Then, somewhere I got the idea that I wanted my recipes in a pretty three ringed binder. That was the beginning of the chaos. I started so many different ways of organizing those recipes in different sized binders and such that nothing got finished and finding my recipes was never easy. So yesterday I decided it was time to go back to old faithful, where everything was easy to find and chaos is nonexistent. My husband had made me a lovely recipe box quite a few years ago, so I pulled that out and dusted it off. I made a template for recipe cards on my microsoft publisher and cut out a ton of those. I also made some pretty dividers out of some old patterned file folders I have kept "just in case." Then I got to work rewriting all those recipes on my new recipe cards. Whew, what a lot of work. But boy does it feel good to be organized. I even found some old favorite recipes that we haven't had for way too long. Those will be made this week! Here are some pictures of the project.

This was the mess I started with. Yes, that pile of papers is all of my recipes.

This is the box my hubby made with the divider cards labeled inside. The file folders I cut up are there on the side.

Towards the end of the project. The pile of recipes to transfer to cards is much smaller now and you can actually see the surface of the desk area. To the right are the recipe cards I made before I cut them all out.

I have just a few more recipes to transfer over, but this project is pretty much completed. What a great feeling it is to accomplish something that has been hanging around for so long.