Monday, September 2, 2013

Labor Day.

Why is it called Labor day? Why cant it be called Fun day, do nothing day, go to the movies day or even laundry day?  Labor day just sounds to much like work!!

Today we started out the morning being startled awake at 5 am by the sound of the Alert Rooster, there must be something approaching the yard, be it a snake, raccoon, hawk or that pesky fox!! So here I go out the door with my 9 mm loaded and ready. What do I see??.... absolutely nothing.  I have no idea why they were so riled up. Decided at that time I should be getting up anyway as we had a list of LABOR day chores to do.

First it started off with this.

We had to cut some branches off the fence. So we started with the Chainsaw. Isn't he good looking with that chain

We then went to this
along with this
After I got done pounding in 10 T-posts my arms were like jello!

We then had to repair a top wire on the fence that the branch broke when it fell.

Wow all of this LABOR before 8:30 am. We then had to go get Rabbit feed and back home for more LABOR at the house.

After that there was gardening that needed tending to, lunch that needed fixed, animal chores that needed done. Now Mr Fixit thinks he need to go pay around with the Tractor. Oh and in-between that
we also worked on his truck.

Now I understand why it is called LABOR day. This is the day to fit in as much LABOR intensive things you can find. Thank goodness LABOR day only comes around 1 time per year!! I think the day AFTER labor day should also be a holiday called national REST day!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

School is back in session so that means that 4-H is not for behind. In fact we have already had our first meeting. Back in march our current club manager turned in her letter of resignation as she was moving out of state. In passing I mention this to Mr Fixit and Daughter(she is in this said 4-h club) and they both immediately said you need to take it over.

So with much prodding from them 2 I send the lady an email and told her I was interested in taking this program over.

WOW! I think I should have had my head examined when I wrote that email. Now I am the proud Club Manager of the Vet Science program. We are starting year 3 and I think after working ALL summer to get the years worth of speakers, field trips, volunteer positions and loads of community service lined up I have aged about 6 years.

Have I ever mentioned how I don't like to stand in front of crowds? Well I think the world over probably felt the earth tremor as my voice was cracking. Now you say how hard is it to stand in front of a room of teen agers, well my reply is VERY HARD...... I have been out of school for a long time and really had no problems then but I sure do now.

I could tell that I had been stressing over this WAY to much as my usually clear skin looked like I was 14 again....ack!

The time came to report to the meeting and it was very hard to stand in front of that room of 30 people but it will get easier. I just have to remind myself I am doing this for the kids!!

If yall don't know about the 4-H vet science program it is a wonderful program geared towards teens to learn about Vet work. Even if they don't do anything else but this program they will leave it being able to be a Vet Assistant, so if you are like me usually a wall flower step up and help out some young kids that want to learn.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

I have been watching the weather and I am getting excited to see the temps are changing and the days are starting to get shorter. You know what that means, cooler weather  and the beautiful colors of fall are near!

(not my picture)
 With this change means work when you live on a farm. We have been busy planting the fall garden, cucumbers were in the ground 2 weeks ago. With 108 plants I sure hope to be swimming in pickles all winter! We are also going to be planting Broccoli and cauliflower. I will be changing up how I keep them protected over the winter months this year.
This is how we did it last year. It works pretty good unless you live in East Texas when during the winter you may run your Air conditioner during the day and the stove at night. Without being able to totally remove the plastic almost daily it was sad to say but they pretty much burned up in there.
                                                             (not my picture)
This year we will be trying this one instead! I already have the list of things I need to get along with a new watering system I will install on this one.
It is also the time of year to be thinking about fire wood! Wow how I hate that word during the summer but sure love it during the winter when we are nice and warm and don't have the huge electric bills for the furnace. We have lived in East Texas for over 10 years and we have not used a furnace since we moved here. Every house we have lived in has had a wood burning stove.

Monday, July 29, 2013

It seems that more and more people are choosing to homeschool now days.  I say it doesn't say much about the school system when you read about the percentages that are crossing over to schooling at home. I for one agree with homeschooling and teaching your kids more than just a Test. Our kids are even learning how to raise their own meat from babies to freezer. I think things like that are very important now days for people not just kids to learn.

They even had their first ever experience in canning this year, they are never to young to learn that for sure.

I want everyone to go read a friends homeschooling journey blog, she is also offering a very cool giveaway! She wrote the book:   The Homeschool Highway: How to Navigate Your Way Without Getting Carsick.

I know y'all would enjoy reading about everything they do too!

When you get to her homepage, click the blue giveaway tab, have fun reading!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Sorry everyone that it has been so long since I posted anything. Life happens and we forget. Last time I posted I posted pictures of the goat kids, wow they are now over 5 months old. They LOVE to play.

We had a nice litter of bunnies a few months ago. They are so cute when they are little.
This is the momma of the litter of bunnies. She is a French lop.
We have also been very busy with the garden. We have been harvesting cucumbers by the laundry basket load. So this year I decided I would toss my canning worries out the window and try it again. I did 11 quarts of dill pickles and 7 quarts of bread and butter pickles. I also tried to do some bread and butter banana peppers and they turned out very well. I did 9 8 oz jars of those and 1 8 oz jar of bread and butter jalapeno peppers. I haven't opened them to try those so cant testify to how good or hot those are yet. Here in our neck of the woods we had a good rain storm come through but it also decided it wanted to take down a large branch of an oak tree. Of course it had to do it in the middle of the night. How I love 3 am wake up calls from mother nature like this one.
There was no house, car, person or animal damage in the making of this, cant say that for the fence or the peach tree it fell on.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

I think we are finally past any weather for planting. I have planted alot of the garden already but still have some to complete. I was out in the garden yesterday and i noticed i already have baby squash on! They have only been in the ground for 2 weeks, but i did start with plants instead of seeds. This year i am going larger than last far i have planted the following.

108 cucumber plants
108 strawberry plants
72 tomato plants
36 okra plants
36 squash plants
24 jalapeno plants
36 bell pepper plants
36 banana pepper plants
12 sugar baby watermelon plants
12 cantaloupe plants
loads of onions
50 garlic
12 leeks
plus broccoli and cauliflower plants!

I also planted a new Texas fig tree this year.

I think that we will be swimming in produce this year but i so cant wait!!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The time has come to take the plunge on finding Rennet. I have never made cheese before but with 5 goats in milk i think it is time! I had no idea Rennet was so hard to find! Nowhere local sells it, so i took to the Internet.

 I started with the cheese making companies but the shipping is so high on these places that i decided to check out Amazon. Since Amazon seems to be my shopping place of choice here lately. I found just the place i was looking for while scanning thru all the pages on Amazon. They carry rennet and shipping is FREE!!Now if you order less than $10 they do charge you a $3 spice it up fee, but i found my Rennet! 34 tablets for $13.00 shipped.

What made it even better was that they offered a FREE 1 oz spice sample just for ordering. Now if you are going to order i recommend ordering $25 or more as they are also offering 4 whole black garlic bulbs FREE!

Now i admit i didn't see the 2nd offer till i had already submitted my order for the rennet so i didn't get the free garlic but if i had known about it i sure would have added more stuff to my cart to get to that $25.

If you are looking for spices they have a HUGE selection in all sizes!!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Here at the farm we are gearing up for spring planting season!! As you can tell by most of the pictures that we use raised beds or large tubs. I have 30+ large tubs that i have been using for several years but they are starting to show wear and tear on them as they don't age well in the sun all the time.

So we started with closed ended 55 gallon blue barrels. To cut them we put this furniture dolly upside down like this.
We then sat a barrel on top of this to get it ready to cut.
you can see the black line around it that is the mark we are going to cut on.

See that nice lip at the top of the barrel? I sat down in a chair and turned that with my hands so he didn't even have to move the saw. We did 15 barrels like this, it worked well and went very fast. Here is what we ended up with.
These have already been moved to where they need to go and filled with compost just waiting to be planted in. Now the barrels cost me $6 each so each have cost me $3. The cutting was all on us.

By the way last time i posted i said i was waiting on babies! Well we have 5 babies and waiting on another doe to kid!Here is a few pictures~

Friday, February 15, 2013

Spring is approaching so we have been busy with garden stuff. We finished up the potato bin and planted 7 lbs of yukon gold. I checked yesterday and we have some coming up already! I planted Garlic and multiplying onions last year and we covered them and they are doing great. Now the chickens found a way into the garden and ate all my broccoli and brussell sprouts! Darn chickens anyway!!

Went to a local greenhouse that usually just sells herbs and they are expanding into garden plants this year and he gave me 2 6 packs of leeks so i also transplanted them. I decided to do some work for him in exchange for plants, works for him and works for me. I was needing to replace some of my herbs this year anyway! Glad i got in on this as i also needed to get veggie plants this year as the greenhouse needs some repairs. Nothing like getting veggie flats at wholesale prices!!

Our nanny goats are getting close to kidding! We have 5 nannies due this year and looking at the sizes of them we may have 10 babies this year. That is way more than the 3 we had last year. I cant wait and sure will post pictures of them!

The 5 calves that we purchased at 24 hrs old 18 months ago are now 18 months old and will be leaving to go to the butcher in a few days. Wow we will be rolling in the fresh meat soon!!

Egg orders have been rolling in just as fast as i can gather the eggs.Yesterday sold 9 dozen!! Glad orders are starting to come in it sure helps to pay for the chicken feed.

We have also gotten back into rabbits and hope to have some babies soon!

Hope this find everyone holding out for spring!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Wow how time flew by over the holidays! Now we are in gear for planning our spring garden. Oh how I love going to the mail box and seeing all of the seed catalogs! Whats even better is the SALES that they offer! Now of course i have already ordered most of my seeds before the new year arrived but i drool over some of the new seeds that they have come out with in the new 2013 catalogs!

I have already purchased my seed potatoes but with all of this rain we have been having i haven't gotten the potato bin ready yet. I need to go to the compost facility and buy 10 yards but when it rains i about need an airplane to just hover over and suck it up with a hose. Their yard is a mud hole!

I know in some areas its to early to start anything but i hope that you are in the planning stage!

I have already planted onions, garlic, broccoli, cauliflower and brussell sprouts. They are all doing great.

I am already dreaming about cucumbers, tomatoes and squash OH MY!

Since we just past the New Year i also bought some cabbage and have a quart jar of sauerkraut fermenting, nothing tastes better than fresh Kraut!!