Thursday, June 13, 2013


I was outside after the rain awhile ago and I spotted some ripe blueberries on one of the bushes!!! About 6 of the best ripe juicy berries I have ever eaten! And from my very own bushes in my yard! It just can't get much better than that.

Has anyone else been getting blueberries yet? This bush is a Tifblue, so I guess they are the earliest ones. I also have some Climax and Premier and a Becky Blue.

I am just so happy to be getting fresh blueberries from my own bushes in my yard.

Pig rodeo

Today was the day for the pig rodeo. See the pigs way down at the end? I put up the Premier fence as a barrier to get them to where we needed them to go. That worked.

Here is where we wanted them. They went just fine and we got the gate shut. Only a little rooting along the way, but no problems here.

We took one of the cattle panels from their pen and got them in this little tiny space. hoping they'd just walk right up onto this nice cozy trailer. But not before a little pig drama. We got Joe, the white pig, on first. Putting a bucket over a pig's head and pushing them backwards really does work! If they're small! Which Joe is a bit smaller than Bob. (I did try it on Bob, but he didn't want anything to do with that game.) So got Joe on and put that piece of plywood up on the trailer to hold him in while he ate and we tried to get Bob on too. But Bob had other plans. We put that other gate that's in the back of the truck where the plywood was. But Bob pushed it away and off he went. Just exactly like the last time we tried to load pigs. Just like the last time, I run screaming through the yard, cussing and throwing buckets and sticks to get him back to where he was  supposed to be. Acting like a crazy lunatic. We did get him back in and he was tired. He rested his big fat butt on the tail of the trailer. Then the guys pushed and pulled and got him up on the trailer!

And here they are. Ready to go to their new home up  the road. I'll have to take pictures of where they'll be living for a few months. It's really nice.

 So, ba-bye for now, Bob and Joe. It's really been fun. I'll miss you guys. But I'll still bring you bread and scraps, ok? Be good. See ya.

And off they went.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Feta cheese

This is the feta I made 5 days ago. All marinating in olive oil with fresh cut basil, thyme, oregano and chives. It is SO good. I love to make a frittata and add this feta to it. With some good sauteed veggies and roasted garlic Bruschetta. Too good!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013


Yep. 95 degrees Wednesday. Farmer's market day. From 3-6. The hottest part of the day. On white concrete and rocks. By a busy city street. With lots of traffic. UGH! Not really looking forward to this at all. But we have to do it. We are tough. I'll take lots of ice cold water and some wet towels. And I have a canopy. But it's only half way in the shade. And I have soaps. And jelly. And now plantain slave. It could be a liquid in this heat. And so could the soap. That's very nearly 100 degrees. That's pretty hot if ya ask me.

So please think nice cold thoughts of all us farmers and artisan type folks out there in this awfully hot heat. And I hope you all have a very nice day!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Just another manic Monday

 I love that song. And I love Mondays. Always have. I had a productive day. I made privet jelly. 15 half pint jars. I had picked the flowers and made the juice a week ago. Finally got around to make the jelly today. It smells just like the flowers and tastes really good. I am pleased with it. Now I am wondering if people who have allergies from privet should eat this jelly?

I made 33 of the smallest canning jars of plantain salve yesterday. I made it in the crock pot. It all turned out really nice and solid. I really love this salve. It's great for all kinds of bug and any bites and bee stings and itches. Also great to put on tick bites. Good stuff.

And a few weeks ago I had infused plantain leaves in olive oil to use in a castille soap. Which I finally made today.It's so pretty and white with a hint of green. This will take 8 weeks to cure/ I like castille soap. It's rich and creamy.

Here is the soap I made with the lard from pigs I raised. It's a summer citrus scent with orange, lemon and lime EO's and orange zest. It smells amazing!

I made just 4 bars of Sandalwood for my friend who disbuds my goat kids.

Here's Heather and Kansas, on the lawn, having a nice little relaxing time together under the shade tree.

I always wanted Red bud trees here. This is the biggest tree and there is another little tiny one in my rock garden. I got them from my mom's yard. I need more.

I also mowed most of the yard and front by the road. And washed a load of clothes and hung them out on the lines. My favorite thing to do is wash my sheets and hang them out on a sunny day. Then when I get in bed, it's the most wonderful smell and I sleep like a baby!

The lady who wanted Ella Belle has decided to not get her. I am a little upset, but I'll try to put them all on CL. And my friend who was supposed to get the pigs didn't come this morning. It was raining. So I  hope he comes tomorrow. And I had a call from some strange person about the chickens. I was just going out to check the bees and had the smoker going and my mom was just leaving and hit the fence. And I, like a dummy, answer my stupid phone. And I couldn't understand them so I told them to call back later. They were asking all kinds of stupid questions. They did call back but I didn't answer the phone. Please tell me I am not the only one who has done this? I will not sell any animals to people who don't know anything about them. Like how big does a Cornish Cross meat bird get? Come on.

I had a call Saturday from a lady who said her daughter wanted a lamb. I knew right away I would never sell her A lamb. I told her sheep like to be with other sheep and she'd need more than 1. She said that would be fine. And did she want a hair sheep or a wool sheep? She said it didn't seem that hard to cut the wool off a sheep. No, I will not sell anything to her either. Sorry. It takes all kinds, I suppose.

I was going to make elderberry jelly too. But when I went out to pick the flowers, they weren't all the way opened. So I'll wait til they are all the way opened to make the juice for jelly. That should be really good.

I am reading an old book that I read several years ago, about bees. It's called The Keeper Of the Bees by Stratton Porter. It was written in 1925. I love old books. The smell is so cool. And there are several references to real bee keepers who wrote books, like Pliney and Huber. Love this book. And now that I have bees, I am reading it again.

So just another Monday. What have you all done today?

(By the way, all the jelly, salve and soap are for sale. If you'd like anything, let me know.)

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Sunday ramblings

Saturday was just one of those days. Just ho-hum. I did make 11 of the smallest canning jars of plantain salve to sell at market. I picked a bunch more plantain to make more later when I get more jars.

Also make a batch of feta cheese last night. It has to sit out 24 hours, then in the fridge a few days. Then I'll marinate it in half pint jars in olive oil and fresh picked herbs to sell too.

Went to mom's for a birthday lunch. So many birthdays in May and June so we just celebrate them all together. My brother's is the 11th. He just left this morning to go back to Colorado. He and his daughter and grand son and my sister and her 3 daughters and a grand daughter will all be coming back up in a few weeks for Gary's memorial. Mark cleaned out mom's house. He put up locks and motion lights and they installed an alarm system. Got the house pressure washed and did lots of yard work. Cleaned the garage. Didn't get a garage door opener yet but will soon. Also changed the door locks so she has just one key. So he did a lot in a week. And I helped as much as I could. Mom will have a day or 2 by herself to rest. She was exhausted. But sad to see Mark leave.

We have all 3 grand daughters this weekend. That wears me out! 14, 11 and 10. Of course Kansas, the 10 year old, lives here with Heather. So I am always worn out! But we got her in a summer camp program at the day care. She'll have plenty to do there with all the field trips and swimming. She is a child that has to be busy all the time. And there was NO way I was going to keep her all summer. I love her, but no.

I have sold my pigs, Bob and Joe, to my friends up the road! He's going to come get them either Monday or Tuesday. I can hardly wait. But had a little moment this morning while feeding them, that I almost changed my mind. But just a moment! I'll still go get the old bread from the bread store for them every week. And I'll probably get at least a half of one of them. I just can't seem to be able to handle all these animals right now and need to let some go.

There is a couple that's supposed to be coming to get Ella Belle today. And I hope I can talk them into getting Zarah and Ira Joe too. So that will be at least 1 less goat, hopefully 3 by the end of the day today.

I also put an ad on CL for the Cornish Cross meat birds. I'd like to sell the 40 younger ones and just keep the 9 older ones that will be ready to butcher in a few weeks. I will keep all the Freedom Rangers. I did have a call from a guy the other day. I said I would not go lower than $4 a piece. And that's like just giving them away. I swear, people want you to just give these animals away. I have so much more money in these birds than I could ever get out of them. Really. So I may just end up keeping them all. They'll be ready to butcher in about a month or so. I may be able to hang on that much longer.

So, not much to write about. I'll post pictures later. I really don't like to just have a post with no pictures, but this is it folks! I hope you ALL have a great Sunday. And don't forget to look around and thank God for all you have!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Disbudding, done for the year.

I took the girls to get disbudded this afternoon. They were not happy with me at all. Ella Belle had to go back for a little scur that was making her look all wonky. And we can't have a wonky looking doe, right? So she looks much better. Her brother, Ira Joe, has some scurs too, but he didn't want to go. They all did great. My friend Kendra, has been disbudding for me for years now. She lives in Trion, which is about 35 minutes from here. She's really good and gentle and gets it done pretty quick. One year though, I had so many kids born within a week of each other, that she came here and did them all. And castrated some of the bucks too.   But that's the only time she's come here to do it. Her 2 kids and husband all came out and watched. Her husband had to help hold Ella Belle while she fixed her up because she's quite bigger than the triplets are. And she was not a happy girl about the whole deal. And she let us all know it. So that little job is done for the year. I don't think there will be any more kids this spring.

Mariah wouldn't even look at me to get her picture taken. But she did in the next one. She's so cute. Every time I brought out a kid, Kendra's kids would oohhh and aww at them. They have LaManchas and Kendra said it'd been a long time since she's had to hold ears back.

Do any of you disbud your kids yourselves? It's just one of those things I'd rather get someone else to do. The first time I took kids, I cried. It was awful. Now it's just one more thing to have to get done. And I know it only hurts for just a few minutes. Then they are just fine. I can do a lot of things. That's just not one I want to do. And this time, we bartered for soap. Cool.