Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Not Enough Hours in the Day

It has been busy around here! What, with all this gorgeous spring weather, there is just so much to do! I have been working like crazy to get things planted in the garden! I will be honest...I don't know how I am going to fit it all in! I went a little crazy with the seed orders this year! Since I wanted to try saving seeds from heirlooms I ordered a lot of different kinds in order to find out what works best here,this can be a challenging gardening  area after all! Next year I will have less of a selection because I will only grow what worked well this year.

The baby chicks are doing great! Didn't even loose one! We moved them out of the spare room and out to Hubby's shed. It is warmer at night now and they are older.

 They are growing fast!

I had a Buff Orpington  hen go broody so this morning I refilled her nest with a dozen Bourbon Red Turkey eggs! We'll see how that goes!

Nibbles is doing good. She is feeling a little cooped up and wanting back out into goat land!

The boys,Hoss and Tube Sock,yeah I lost out on Little Joe, are just full of  goatie goatness!

Bouncing and playing all over their pen! Like their mother,they try to eat everything!

Here is Hoss playing "king of boy mountain"!

And can I eat this?

 Having baby goaties does make it hard to get things done around here! They need to be properly watched and adored after all!

This is Doodah ...she is due  on the 8th. What do you think..twins?

Butter Bean says he is finding that being an uncle is absolutely exhausting!

 I have to say thank you to my blogging sisters at  Texan,Polly's Path and Life on our Iowa Farm! They all gave me with The Beautiful Blogger Award! And Tails From the Williamson's trails who gave me an honorable mention because we received this award together . So if you don't know about my wonderful blogging  sisters go on over and check them'll be glad you did!

Sunday, March 28, 2010


Woo Hooo! We have a successful goat birth! Nibbles has twins! Two bucks,and I am not even the slightest bit disappointed   that there was not a doe in there! I am just tickled pink to have mother and babies doing well!

One is big,really big, and one is small,probably average.

I wanted to call them Hoss and Little Joe ! I was a big Bonanza fan as a kid,I had the biggest crush on Little
Joe....... where was I..oh yeah,baby goaties! Anyways,The Boy is set on calling the little one Tube Sock! I know..Boys! He does have a tube sock goat coat!

The little one is solid white with maybe a beige ear. I know, who would have thought a black goat and a red goat would make a white baby! The mysteries of goatieness!

The big one is really pretty, light tan and white spotted!

He is already a rooter tooter! He was goatie goat dancing when he was just a couple hours old!

The little one is fine despite being smaller. He is eating good but sleeps more than his brother and is not quiet as frisky..yet!

They will be weathered and hopefully we can find homes for them as pets.I think weathers are the best pet goats.They don't come in heat for one,and they are usually very sweet. Any of you Houston area Texas Blogging Gals interested in getting a pet goatie just let me know!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

A Big Ole Thank You

I got two awards on the same day!

Thank you so much Isobelle, of Isobelle Golightly  the Beautiful Goat and DebH at Dakota Goats! I am always humbled, and tickled pink when I get an award! I usually don't pass them along because,for one, I have sooo many blogs I just love I can't pick just a few! I have homesteading blogs,goat blogs,farm blogs, canning blogs, cooking blogs, inspirational blogs,humor blogs......whew! I just love so many of you all I could never choose so I am going to break the rules and give it to all my friends! So if you want to play along and tell every one 10 things about your self..well just do it!

1. You must accept the award.
2. Thank the person who gave you the award.
3. Add a link to the person who gave you the award.
4. Paste the award on your blog.
5. Write 10 things about yourself that others might not know.
6. Pass the award on to 10 others.

1.  When I say I am a hermit,I really mean I am a hermit! I could actually live in Ted  Kaczynski's
uni-bomber    shack!

2.  I can not type! It takes me forever to do a blog post! Hubby keeps telling me to take  lessons but I have so many interesting things I would rather uses my time to learn and do! I also had no idea how bad I spelled until spell check! Geesh!

3.  I love to travel. Not tourist travel, out of the way,back roads,nook and cranny travel!

4. I am fiercely protective of my son and husband. I will unleash on someone that tries to hurt either one of them like a hungry momma bear! Other that that I consider my self easy going!

5. I can't stand people who live off welfare and disability who are perfectly capable of working! I also hate drug addicts and dealers!

6. My heart longs for the mountains .

7.  I do not dye my hair.I earned every single gray hair!

8. hmmm ...this is getting hard! Hubby and I have moved 11 times in almost 19 years of marriage!

9.The reason we only have one child is not from lack of trying! We always wanted more...but it was not meant to be.

10. I always wanted to be Laura Ingalls ! I guess I kind of am now, as much as I can be as an almost middle aged woman in modern society !

Well...that was harder than I though! I just don't consider myself that interesting.....So, are you going to play along?

Friday, March 26, 2010

Cheap Cheap!!!

We got an order of baby chickies in the mail yesterday! We ordered from Ideal Poultry right here in Texas. They all look great,spunky and full of energy! I love how, in almost every picture, one is giving me the "chicken eye"!

We really don't need to order chickens,ours reproduce well. These are all different kinds of bannies. I like bannies. For one they are the best broody hens ever! Our big girls almost never go broody. It is nothing for my little bannies to go broody 4 or more times a year!

Plus they are just so darn cute! They lay good,but it is a small egg,so I just use two when I need and egg in something! I think if you have a small space and want some chickens just for eggs, bannies are a great choice!

The varieties I got this time are Silver Laced Cochins, Red Frizzle, Blue Mille Fleur D'uccle which I have never had before,and some Buff Japanese.The Buff Japanese are for The Boy.They are a beautiful,tiny chicken.He had some last year but a possum managed to get in their little pen and killed the hens.It could have been a coon since it had to manipulate a latch and their little hands do that  so well.So now he has some replacements.We actually all enjoy watching those little Japanese chickens.

Right now they are in the spare room,our nights are still cold and I don't know if a heat lamp would keep them warm enough while they are still so new to this world.

I think baby chicks are one of the simple pleasures of farm life...sigh!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

So Busy!

Yes, it has begun!

Spring and so much work! Look, green!

  The red buds are blooming all over the place!

Today I spent several hours tilling and planting. A little less than half of the garden space I currently have.If I can get the sheep moved over to a new pasture soon I will be able to increase my garden space .Right now they are right next to my garden in a temporary field.  If I don't get them moved soon I can always fall garden in that spot!

I got corn, Roma beans, soup beans and purple hull peas planted and some yellow squash set out. I also planted seeds to go in the hot house for my winter squash and watermelons,I don't have their space ready yet,but I wanted to get them started so they have a good chance this summer.

 Here are some pictures of what is going on in the hot house. Yes,I made a hillbilly repair with orange duct tape.The door is the only place I have had to repair.It has held up well!

The very biggest tomatoes I bought from the feed store.Some of mine are not far behind though!

I will plant a few weeks earlier next year I think! I learned a lot from starting all these seeds.

The hot house is not a green house and  it will freeze inside! The central heat will dry out seedlings before you know it! Needless to say I had some replants! As I always tell The  Boy, it is never a mistake if you learn something from it! I even planted some carrots in the pot I use to hold open the door! I will plant stuff any where I can find  or fill up with some dirt!

Here is one of my raised beds. I hope to make some more over the next few weeks.

It has strawberries, onions around the sides and mini bok choy in the center.On the end is a cattle panel with malabar spinach soon to grow up it.

Boy,I have so many garden plans! I sure hope I can keep up the energy to get it all done!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Waskely Wabbit

I would like to think if Elmer Fudd ever caught Ole Buggs Mrs.Fudd would have stewed him up good and tasty!

This is not a quick recipe but it is easy recipe!  You could easily adapt it for the crock pot though! I love the crock pot! Sometimes...hmm..I am going to say most times after a long day on the farm the last thing I want to do is cook so, if I know I am going to have a busy day I fill up the crock pot with something yummy so I don't have to cook when I am tired!

This is a rabbit recipe but I have made it with  a jar of home canned chicken.If you make it with canned chicken then it is a quick recipe because you can skip the hour of simmering!

I cook up a pan of bacon and set it aside. In the bacon grease I brown a cut up rabbit and a chopped onion.Then I add 2 cups, maybe a little more, of beef broth and 1/4 cup tomato sauce and salt and pepper.Cover and simmer until rabbit is tender.Mine was about and hour.Remove rabbit and debone.Put it back in the skillet and add I cup of rice and frozen green peas,to your liking, and crumbled bacon. Cover and cook until rice is done and liquid is absorbed. Top with some chopped tomatoes and maybe some feta cheese.This is a recipe that can easily be played around with...add some chillies and make it spicey..Italian get the picture!

I am always looking for good rabbit recipes  so, if you have one, I would love for you to share!

Monday, March 22, 2010

I'd Love to Change the World

Remember,if you are old enough, the old song" I'd love to change the world...but I don't know what to do..." Look it up on u tube ,it's a great old hippie song and works good for today!

You may have noticed a new button on my side bar,Jamie Oliver's food revolution.He is on a campaign to save our children.Did you know that this generation of children are expected to have shorter lives then their parents?Yes, it is true.Do you know what is going to kill them? Food. Sounds strange that the very thing that gives us life is killing them. Most of the things being fed to our children these days doesn't really qualify as food. Jamie Oliver is on a mission to educate children on nutrition and change the food system in the public schools.

I am going to go off on a small rant here...let me get my soap box. We are not teaching our young women the life skills of homemaking any more! I blame the extreme women libbers.Now, don't start your hate  comments yet, hear me out. When equal rights for women started it was a great thing.Women should be able to get equal pay and rights,that is just a given. But somewhere along the way it got warped,women should reject every thing feminine and be men. In doing this I think this is where we failed,we stopped teaching our young women the life skills of home making. Let me tell you it is a life skill, just as important as learning computer skills! I don't care what path she takes,she can be a construction worker,at the end of the day the responsibility of the home and children and what the children eat ,are 99% of the time going to fall on the woman!  Our young women need to be taught how to take care of their homes and families.They need to know how to cook from scratch instead of filling their children with processed,chemical filled empty food! Home economics should be mandatory in every school! Every child needs to know  the basics of nutrition,cooking and home care!

I feel a change in feminism. It is more and more about embracing being a woman...celebrating what we are not trying to change it. This feels me with hope! We are not wrong or lesser for being women,we do not need to change what we are! We are wonderful and wise and powerful  beings,the world needs us as the women we were meant to be!

Now we have to fix the mistakes of the past.We have to educate and save our children. We have to. They have no one else but us.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Kitchen Experiments

I have been wanting to try making my own sauerkraut for awhile now, ever since  Texan posted about getting her really nice pickling crock and starting a batch. I don't have a crock...yet! But you don't have to have a crock if you want to do a small batch...or so the internet says! So,I have been waiting for my grocery store to get in some organic cabbage,because I have always heard that plain cabbage is heavily sprayed with pesticides...the way those little worms love cabbage,I believe it!  I read at a lot of sites about making kraut in jars so that is what I am trying. We all know how good fermented food is for us!

One big cabbage,this only made 2 quart jars after it was shredded,salted and pounded.

This is super easy.Just shred the cabbage....

put in a bowl and sprinkle with salt..1 to 2 Tbs..some recipes call for kefir whey,since I don't have fresh milk right now I don't have any.That would be a super pro biotic boost!

...add spices or other veggies if you want.This being my first time I went with just cabbage. Traditionally,from what I read you would add fennel or caraway seed.I didn't have these on hand so I used dill and celery seed as these are some flavors I like. I am never afraid to experiment! Some jalapenos might be good next time...this is Texas after all! We have to make everything hot!

Then pound it down to get the juices going and let sit awhile...

Pack in jars  tight and weigh it down. It just happens that these small jelly jars just fit in the quart jars and make good weights!

If there isn't enough juice add a little water,not city water, to cover the cabbage. Put the lid on and wait.It said to release the gasses every so often from the jar. Then just wait some more!

Oh, and it is supposed to be a smelly process so..yeah.  I will let you all know some time later if this worked.Hopefully I will not forget to degas it! Can you imagine what that would be like if it exploded.....!!!!

Saturday, March 20, 2010


Yesterday I was digging around in the canning jars in my shed and look what what I found!

It gave me a start! Now,I am not one of those folks who are afraid of snakes...I am not an idiot either,I have a healthy respect for them.

But finding one unexpected always makes my heart skip a beat  until my brain can register if it is poison or not! This one is a chicken snake! Usually we find giant ones in the chicken coop! This makes The Boy burst with happiness.
It usually goes something like,"Watch it Mom and don't let it get away! I got to go get my shot gun!"
That boy loves to shoot stuff...and blow up stuff...and well,you know...he's a boy!

 We have a lot of problems with chicken snakes getting our eggs and baby chicks. I am not one of those, aww.. they have a right to be here too, people. If they stay in the woods they can have all the rights they want. When they come on my farm and eat my baby chicks,which takes food away from my family, that is an act of war and they must die.Yes,I know they eat mice...well,so does my weenie dog! Now,I don't really believe in killing for the sake of killing  so I didn't waste him,noooo..I fed him to the chickens! Poetic justice I think!

Friday, March 19, 2010

A Goatie in Demand

Butter Bean is a goatie in demand! Butter Bean was our first little goatie,we got him when he was a month old,his little goatie hoofs almost never touched the ground. Saying he is spoiled is an understatement! Bean is also our only pygmy goatie.

The Boy had wanted a baby goat for so long,then we discovered that all goats need a friend so we got Nibbles a month later. See how it start off with one and then it needs a friend ...then before you know it you have a whole herd!

Butter Bean and Nibbles are very bonded.They have slept in the same house their whole lives until the last couple of weeks.Nibbles has been moved to the big stall in the shed  with Doodah since she will have babies soon.Because Butter Bean doesn't know, or refuses to  accept, that he is a wether,he is very aggressive towards the girls if they come in heat.Well,not that strange? Anyway ,Sweet Pea has been coming in heat lately so we moved him over to Mr.Tumnus's pen because he is so darned rough and pesky!

Mr.Tumnus loves his little buddy! They play king of the goat house all day!

Mr.Tumnus is very gentle and, although he is bigger than Bean, he is never rough with him.

Butter Bean is a rough and tough little toot!

After  a good while of playing they stand on the goat houses and girl watch together! I can just imagine what they are saying...

"Hey ladies,you lookin' mighty good over there!"....

"Why don't ya'll come over here for a party!"..."Yeah,you know you want some of this!"

So the other day we put Better Bean and Nibbles back together for a day...oh my goodness it was so sweet! They had missed each other so much! They just started rubbing their heads together  and rubbing up and down each others was like goatie hugs! We realized we have to allow the two of them more time together! But now Mr.Tumnus is attached to his "little buddy" and wails miserably when Bean is not in there with him! Butter Bean is much more suited to be in the buck pen since he thinks he is one and acts the part....
what to do,what to do...they will just have to share him on alternating days.Butter Bean has proven that wethers are useful to have around ,he is the most in demand goatie I know!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The High Cost of Parenthood

As most of you know,we are a homeschooling family.Maybe we are an unschooling family... we don't follow a strict routine and our lessons vary with The Boy's interest.Don't get me wrong we stick to the basics,math,history spelling.... We  believe in a ton of knowledge through reading, which The Boy loves! A big teaching tool for us,especially Hubby, is hands on learning.The Boy welds,tinkers with the trucks, builds things and works with the animals. He knows how to do more than a lot of grown men I know(Momma brag moment)! We encourage this and give him pretty much free reign to do what he wants,he is a good and trustworthy kid after all!

So a couple of days ago he is messing around under the hood of my truck. Nothing unusual about that, he takes care of me! He said I needed some new fuses for something and I said for him to get them when ever we were in town next. I drive an '05 Toyota Tacoma,that's a truck for non auto minded people like myself! I will drive it until it is so old people stop and point when I drive by!  Never had a lick of trouble with it. I get in to take The Boy to church  the next morning and my warning lights are on for my ABS system and Brakes! Yikes! Things seem OK though. I look in the owners manual.It says stop immediately and get the truck serviced. Yeah, right!  It seems OK to me! I Google it and it says to check the brake fluid.I have The Boy put some in, it was OK but not all the way full. Hmm ...lights still on. So I tell Hubby,who is in China, and he says for me to take it to the dealership. Well,this just makes every frugal bone in my body ache! Nooo...not the dealership!  Deep down I knew if he was home he could fix it for a fraction of the price of the dealership! My Hubby can fix anything,it's a gift ! He made me promise to take it in,because he knows me and I will wait for him to get home.He also  knows  that I am a woman of my word and if he can get me to promise it is a done deal.
So I drive the 40 or so miles one way,yeah,were in the boonies, to get my truck checked.The whole while wondering if the next time I needed to stop...would I!
So after an hour of playing i-phone scrabble, they beep me.  I ask what was wrong.

Drum roll......the fuse was in the wrong place! The guy put it back in the right place and charged me $60! I looked at the boy...he had turned 6 shades of red!

Well,it was a learning experience.Now I am understanding about the high cost of education!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Turkey Eggs

Whew ! Is it just me or has this spring weather got everyone super busy? The warm temps and sunshine have been like a magnet, pulling me out side.I have started tilling the garden,planted a few cool tolerant things like turnip greens.Mmmm,boy do we love turnip greens! I am a little leery of planting too many seeds,that  old Easter cool spell  saying you know.I did plant one row of beans...I couldn't help! I hope Mother Nature is kind to me this year! I have plenty of things in the hot house started.Tomatoes and peppers of course but also cucumbers and cantaloupe and egg plants and squash.They are safe and growing happily in there and will have to stay put until I feel it is safe for them.Our nights are still cool...

Our Bourbon Red turkey girls have started laying!

Just 2 eggs so far..

This is them compared to a chicken egg!

I am keeping them out of the fridge in hopes one of our hens will go broody soon.I will stick them under a chicken! I am thinking of an incubator....times like this it would come in handy,especially if I end up with a bunch of turkey eggs and no hen to put them under! We have eaten our excess tom turkeys,they were very good! So it is definitely worth raising these birds! I hope I can sell the extra babies if I get them hatching...Bourbon Reds are a Heritage Breed and more people are taking an interest in raising heritage animals.These are beautiful,gentle and tasty...a good bird in my opinion!