Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Abraham, a little better now.

Here is Abraham this morning. I just gave him Red cell. No wormer. He still looks puffy here.

And here he is just now this evening. He looks much better. I hope he makes it. He's such a good ram. Very laid back and nice for a ram. But he's still young, so who knows. But I like the boy. And he's had one sweet little ewe lamb so far. And I hope he has lots more to come.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Watermelon eating chickens

There is some watermelon under all these chickens. Their first watermelon and they loved it!

They had it all eaten in just a few minutes. Good stuff! These are the Freedom Rangers.

I also gave the laying hens some. They don't want anything to do with it. Strange chickens.

So I got theirs and took it to the FR and they had a watermelon eating contest. See the ref in the middle?

Monday, July 29, 2013


This is my poor ram, Abraham. About 4 days ago, I noticed him laying by himself. So I checked him and found his jaw so huge. I knew right away it was bottle jaw. Those darn Barber Pole worms were back and with a vengeance.

So I ran in the house and got my RX kit. I gave hime some Dectomaz wormer, Red cell, a shot each of Thiamin and B complex. Did that the next day too. Yesterday, gave him Cydectin with the shots and Red Cell. Yesterday afternoon, gave him 6 cc of Valbazen. This morning, more Dectomax. And some LA200 antibiotic. I guess I should have given him that the past few days too.

This is him this afternoon. Not much difference at all from 4 days ago. He lays in this corner sometimes and eats dirt. I give them all a loose organic mineral and Thorvin kelp. Last spring I lost my favorite ewe Lucinda, to this same thing. I thought I had a handle on it this time. I have been rotating pastures and cutting the grass a few days later. Until this, they have all been just fine.

But he is a Finn ram. And this dark color. Lucinda looked exactly like him. I have more worm problems with the Finn sheep than the hair sheep. I don't know if it's this particular breed or the color. But all the white sheep are fine. I just hope he makes it.

Any thoughts or advice for me? What else should I be doing? I am doing what the vet told me to do last year. So no, I haven't called him.And Dectomax is what he said will kill these Barber Pole worms.

Grapes and jelly

I picked a bucket of grapes yesterday. And got 2 eggs from those lazy hens. But I am grateful for them!

Then made jelly this morning. It's so pretty. I got 9 jars. I'll make more when I get more grapes. These grapes are so good too. The color is amazing.

Bees are gone

The bees are all gone now. It's so strange to go out there and not see or hear them. It's so darn sad too. I was not going to put them where they are. I had a spot out back up on the hill in the corner all ready for them to go. But my friend said this would be a better place. It was easier to get them there too. Totally under the tree all day.

When I get more bees, I'll move this hive, after it's been all cleaned out, to that better spot. I will have more bees here. But now have to wait til next spring.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Kombucha tutorial

 I had some people buy kombucha scoby from me yesterday at market. So I decided to do a tutorial for them. I've been making mine this way for about 6 years now, so it may not be the same way others do theirs. It works for me, so I keep doing it this way.
I start with the scoby and either one cup or two cups of starter. I have a gallon and a half gallon going at all times. So I am doing these 2 pots.

Then for a gallon, 4 large tea bags and 2 cups sugar. For half gallon, 2 large tea bags and 1 cup sugar. You can use organic sugar or succanot as well. The scoby lives on the sugar. It absorbs the sugar so you are not getting all this sugar. (You can use any brand of tea. This is just what I had. BUT do not use organic, because of the oils.)

Add this to you pot of water. I use my biggest stainless steel pot for the gallon jug. Just bring it to a boil, then simmer a few minutes. Cover the pot and let it COOL completely.

These are my 2 jugs. I use glass and a wooden spoon. And a glass measuring cup.

This is the scoby I took out of the gallon jug. Looks like it's been awhile since I've separated the mother from her babes. There are 3 here. I will take the one on top to use in this new batch.

I was going to say here that you can eat this scoby. It can be dried or eaten just like this. It's so full of goodness. I cut mine up when I have a  lot of extra, and give it to my chickens. They love it.

I put the top scoby along with 2 cups of the tea into this measuring cup. I drink about this much of the tea each morning. (in the cup.) The gallon jug that's nearly full is the tea that I'll be drinking. I like a little fizz, so I'll just leave it out on the counter. Sometimes I'll get little babies growing in the jug. Kind of slimy. So if you don't think you can handle that, just put it in the fridge. BUT NEVER PUT YOUR SCOBY IN THE FRIDGE!!! It will kill it!

So when tea is cool, add to jugs slowly.

I usually have to add more water to the tea bags to fill up the gallon jug.

Then, just cover with either a paper coffee filter, or paper towel or cheesecloth and a rubber band. Put under your sink and let sit for about a week. You can check on it to see how it's doing. And smell it.

If you want a sweeter drink, go about a week. If you want it more fermented, leave it longer. But not more than a few weeks. Then you just start all over again.

When you get your tea ready for drinking, at this point, you can add fruit juice, bits of fruit, herbs. Just experiment and have fun with it. You can also use the bottles with the caps like a beer bottle, and ferment it a day or so. But if you do this, BE CAREFUL! It can explode and your kitchen will be a MESS!

It's really easy and hardly takes any time at all. Just making the tea. If you have any questions, just ask. And research on the internet about all the wonderful benefits of kombucha. It's amazing!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

The bees

Well, there aren't very many bees now. I am hoping they're all out doing what bees are supposed to be doing right now. I don't know though. It's just so sad.