Monday, December 9, 2013

Sauteed collard green

I don't know if I ever posted this recipe before. But it's SO good, I just have to. And it's so easy and fast and so good for you too. If you like any kind of greens, you'll like this.

You just go out in the garden, or to the farmer's market, or the store, and gather a bucket of collard greens. Take them inside to the kitchen and wash them real good. I just stick them in the salad spinner to get all the water off. That's about the handiest kitchen gadget ever.

Then take about half an onion, chopped up. And about 5 cloves of garlic, chopped up.

Then chop up all the greens. I just take a handful and roll them up and cut that way.

Get your skillet hot and add olive oil. Add your onions and cook a few minutes til soft. Then throw the garlic in. I just stir them up good, then start adding the greens.

I'll add a handful, then some salt and pepper. Stir it all up good. Then add more greens. You know how fast these things cook down.

Get them all in the pan, then turn the heat down to about low, put a lid on, and let simmer about 15 minutes. You might want to check to see if it needs a little more oil. The greens really suck the oil up. But don't put too much in, because once they've had oil, if you add too much, it can get too oily. So be careful.

These are so good, you'll want to have some a few times a week.

You can also do kale a similar way. I do the same thing with the onions and garlic. But I add chopped walnuts and dried cranberries. Cook til tender, then add kale. Talk about some good eatin' right there! I took some to the community dinner a few weeks ago and they were all eaten up.

So go out to the garden and try some soon. You'll like, I bet.


This morning, after eating breakfast, I looked out the window and saw a pair of these buggars flying to the big maple tree. So I got the dogs and ran to the milk room and grabbed a bucket of feed and ran out to the chickens to put them in the coop. They all went in except one of the black ones. So I guess she'll be chicken dinner for the hawks. If they catch it. I love to see hawks. Somewhere else. Not in my vicinity. I like my chickens and love all the eggs they have been supplying lately. I really don't want to lose any. 

And I almost fell this morning. Out in the chicken yard. It's like ice out there. Really slippery. I guess I need to take a walking stick with me. But I always have both hands full. I like to do as much as I can in one trip to save time. I think of myself as a farm girl Rachel Ray. Carry as much as possible to save time and steps. 

Tiny is so much better now. His burns are shrinking. He only has 2 appointments this week and both on Thursday. Really nice, compared to last week's 4 days in a row of doctors. But all these meds are making him sleep a lot. He always did take naps during the day before, but not like this. And yesterday, because it rained all day, his blood sugar levels were higher than they have been, due to inactivity. All he did was walk out to the wood pile and get a wheel barrow full of wood. That's it. I hope this rain will stay away for awhile. I am tired of it for sure.

I put the sheep over next door in the other pasture this morning. There is actually some green over there. They all ran out in it and didn't even want hay. Everything is so brown here now, so when I saw that, I had to let them over there. They are all so fat.

And I got Stella's big crate moved back into the dining room. I have been doing this in winter, so we'll have more room in the living room with that wood stove. Then I put the Christmas tree on top of the crate. So I have gotten this far! Maybe later I'll go out to the milk room and get the tree. And I cannot believe there are only 16 more days til Christmas!! Noooooo!

Rough-legged Hawk flying near Gore Bay, Manitoulin Island, Ontario, Canada

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Figuring out the carder.

I am so glad I wasn't standing too close to Misha this morning when I tried petting him again. He kicked twice. Bad boy! Oh well. There's always tomorrow.

I think I have finally figured this carder out. Last night I watched a video of the people that made one of the carding machines, the Straouches. I know that's not how their name is spelled, but y'all have heard of them. Anyway, the guy was just pulling the wool apart real thin and putting it on the platform and letting it go into the wheels by just turning the handle slowly. So I did it. And it works! Before, I was pulling the wool back as it was going through and it was all going onto the smaller wheel and making me mad. So I have already done it this was 4 times and every time I have no wool on the smaller wheel. Now to figure out the tension on the spinning wheel. I am anxious to spin all this that I've been carding.

It's raining again. It's like so slippery out there. I need to take a walking stick with me. I do have my handy dandy wagon I use to haul hay with. I love that wagon. It's what I use most often for everything around here. The best thing I ever bought for this farm. Everyone should have one. We also use it to haul wood to the house.

I hope you all have a great Sunday.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Baby it's cold outside!

First, can y'all read this ok? Sometimes I go to blogs and when there's a background like this, I can't see the words. I can here, but wondered what y'all see. Let me know please and if you can't see it, I'll change it.

Wow. Alpaca wool is amazing! I just now, after more than 2 months, got to actually PET this red Alpaca.

Seems like I am always in a hurry when I am feeding all the animals in the morning. I feed these 2 about half a big coffee can of sweet feed and minerals in the morning, plus hay. Misha, the red one, will eat out of my hand or the feed can. But that's as far as it's gotten. Until now.

So this morning, I put their feed in their bowls and just stood there. Misha was beside me and Sugar on the other side of him. I reached over, while they both had their heads down, and pet Sugar. Of course he moved over. But then did let me pet him for a few seconds.

But Misha, the red one, let me pet him all over his back and neck!! I just stood there, since he never even moved, and pet him all I could. It was amazing! He is SO soft. I am so happy that I have finally got to touch them! I'll do this every morning now and maybe one day I will be able to pet them any time I want to.

They are really sweet boys and I do love them. My husband says they are just stuck up. He'll say something to them and they just turn their heads away. Not the most social of animals on this farm.

We had to start up the wood stove again this morning. After being SO hot and humid here the past week, it's cold again. I mean, we had windows open and I was wearing shorts. But not today. Or the rest of this week. At least we don't have ice and snow like everywhere else. But I think frozen mud would be nice right now. It has rained a bit too much for me. Not liking all this mess.

                                   This was from a few weeks ago. But we'll have more soon.

And yesterday morning, right at feeding time, it's just pouring rain. So I go out in it to haul hay and bread and stuff to the masses. As soon as I am done, it stops raining. Seriously. So I didn't milk Penelope. I had to be gone all day and had to leave. So I was thinking I'd go ahead and dry her up, since the day before, I only got a pint of milk.

But I don't want to dry her up. I want to keep milking her. Even a pint of milk a day is better than nothing. Or store bought. or even raw Jersey cow milk. It's good and I like it, but I really love my goat milk. A lot. I know I'll eventually have to dry her up, and will. But just not right now.

I have still not done a thing about Christmas around here. I used to decorate my whole house years ago. I just can't make myself do that here for some reason. We do put up a tree, but I have to make myself do that anymore. And I'll get the grand kids to decorate it when they're here. I might go get some greenery and red berries from Mrs. T's yard later and do the mantle and buffet and windows outside. But I really don't care. I just don't like winter anymore. And IT'S NOT EVER WINTER YET!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

It IS a boy after all!

I was thinking I didn't have a rooster after all. He never did crow. Just another hen I guess.

But this morning, I heard the noise. Twice! It was the sound of a very young rooster trying to crow. I love that sound. But I love a really good crow too. So he can keep his name, Black Bart, now.

And I think I might have another rooster as well. You can see the one with the long feathers in front of Black Bart. If it is a roo, he'll be Black Jack. They are both pretty big. This other one has the tail feathers like a rooster.

So this is pretty cool. Get to hear crows again after a very long crow-less time here at Outback Farm.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Doctors, doctors and more doctors. Good grief already!

So this week, Tiny has 4 different doctor appointments. It was only supposed to be 3 but then the hospital doctor wanted him to come in today. So yesterday was the blood work to check his INR level because of the Coumadin. Today the hospital doctor to check on him and that was the last time for him. Tomorrow is his diabetic doctor, who moved his appt. up from Jan. Then Thursday is the wound care center to check on his ankles. Man, that's a lot of doctors in one week. And Friday is my day with Mrs. T.

We will also have our youngest grand Kansas the next 2 days on account of her having strep throat and the doctor said for her to not go back to school til Friday. So she'll come out in the early morning so her momma can go to work. Then on the way to town we'll hand her off to my mom.

And I need to call the dentist and skin doctors for Mrs. T too. I keep forgetting to do that. So I could be taking her to doctors too. How fun is this? Tiny is already tired of going to doctors. And tired of watching TV. Now that's hard to believe. He can sit for days and watch Gunsmoke or Law and Order. He even laughs like a kid at the 3 Stooges still. So he must be getting restless. Poor guy.

So he does stuff like this. I had set this feed pan on the hood of the truck. He moved it to the center and called it a hood ornament. Our farm truck hood ornament. Very clever indeed! And he's been chopping a little wood. He also has brought in wheelbarrows full of wood. But since it's going to be in the 70's the next several days, we let the fire go out. Plus it was like 87 degrees inside the house. With windows open. I think we got the stove working pretty darn good. But probably don't need to use it til it gets near 20 degrees.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Just some sillinesss

Yesterday, we all went back over to mom's to finish off the Thanksgiving leftovers. Mom brought some frozen pickle juice outside for us all to try. I wish I could have gotten all the silly faces! It was hilarious for sure. You all should try this. Just put pickle juice in ice cube trays and freeze. It's great on really hot days after working out in the garden or mowing the yard. But pucker up!

                                           My mom with Tiny and youngest daughter Abby.

                        The 2 oldest grand daughters, Chloe and Coryn, trying theirs for the first time!

                                          This is Kansas, the youngest and silliest of the bunch.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and are all full of good food. It's now December. Can you believe that? I so want to do my house like I used to. Maybe I'll get in the mood soon. It's going to be a rainy week here. We let the fire go out because it's supposed to only be in the 40's at night and 60's during the day. And it was 87 in here yesterday. That wood stove is really working god now! But we'll give it a break for awhile.

Just wanted to thank all of you who voted for my story. I did not win. I really don't understand that guy. 2 people won but not the whole amount. Kind of strange to me. But thanks anyway. I might try again. It was fun.