Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Around the farm these days...

 Went out this morning and took lots of pictures. Saw honey bees loaded down with pollen. All kids of business out there right now. Getting ready for winter. Are you?

Kale and radishes and lettuces and spinach, all in beds, growing really good right now. The weather is perfect for fall gardening. My favorite time of year to garden.

My place to sit and read or knit and watch things grow in the gardens.

Getting ready to plant some Stinging Nettle seeds that Linda sent me. This is the "wild garden" down here, so they can do what ever they want. There is all kinds of busy going on down here these days. Butterflies, wasps, honey bees, bumble bees. I love seeing all the business of life these days.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Dessert, fiber and a fair...

 I don't usually make dessert. Well, hardly ever make dessert. If we have company or family over maybe. But my oldest grand daughter, Chloe, is here and she wanted to make a pie. This is what we came up with. Chocolate meringue. It looks good. I hope it is. I just put one of my chickens in the over to roast with garlic and onions. So it should be a good dinner.

I washed some of my white alpaca's fiber awhile ago. It sure is soft. But not fun to wash. It sticks to my hands. But I love it. I'll blend some in with some of the white wool. It makes it softer. I'd also like to try dying some of this.

In the back is Adele's wool I've been hand picking to get ready to card. There is one batt already done in the middle. I am surprised at how soft it is.

Yesterday I went to the fair. I don't know if it's because I'm older now. Or that it was spread out all over the place. Up and down so many hills. Lots of walking. (They did have shuttles though, but I am too impatient to wait.)  Or because the carnival part was so small, compared to the fair in Bulloch Co. I always went to when I was younger. It was all in one place. And huge. But I was a little disappointed in this fair. I did have a corn dog (which came out of a box) and a funnel cake. It was fun seeing people I know there with their kids and grand kids. I saw the family I sold Tom and Bob, the bucks, to. They are the best goat people ever! So happy they got those 2 boys. But all in all, just not the way I remembered a fair to be. But I'm glad I went. Later, I went back with the 2 grand kids to ride the rides at night and see the fireworks. It took 40 minutes to get home from the very back of the field we had to park in. 5 miles to the house.

Have a great week, y'all!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Some Bovine and Avis aries...

And just a warning: there is a picture of my husband's foot, if anyone is squeamish. It's really not bad, just wanted to let you know. It's at the very end.

 I put the critters out in the back yard for a few days, to eat down the grass back there. It was growing pretty good. I think Louise is looking like she's gained some weight since being here and eating all this grass.

They are also in the side yard, where the older apple trees are. Full of apples. And Louise loves apples. She's just the right height to reach up into the trees to get hers. She doesn't eat the ones already on the ground, like the sheep have to. She's beneath that. Literally.

Amarillo came over to see if Louise would knock a few good ones down for her. The sheep aren't too much afraid of her any more. I think they're ok with her. The alpacas, still terrified!

I grabbed a few bags of wool yesterday. One was a fleece that was already washed from last year. Can't remember who's now. But looks good. I'll start carding it soon. I think I'll add some of Sugar's fleece to it to make it softer.

But this is Adele's wool. She is a dirty girl. Lots of VM, all over it. It took awhile to go through it all. Had to throw some out, it was so bad. And still didn't get all of it. Washed a few buckets and will see if carding will get the rest out. It's not the best wool. Adele is probably 75% Finn. Her mother is a Katahdin-Dorper cross. So I'll use most of hers for felting.

So for those of you who process your own wool, what do you do with the dirty tips that turn yellow in washing?  It's just not pretty. I would like to try dying some of this. I bought koolade the other day, for the first time in years. Still 5 packs for $1. Cool! I have citric acid and vinegar. I'll have to get directions for dying with koolade.

I love this picture. Wish Adele had been over some more though.

This is some washed and on the drying rack in the studio. We got some rain last night. so had to put it inside.

This is Adele. The bag of already washed wool in above her. It's a big bag full too.

And here's the foot with the diabetic ulcer. It really is a lot better. But seems to be taking forever to heal. So the other night, I was laying in bed, trying to think of more natural ways we could try to heal it. He went to the foot doc a few weeks ago and they took another culture to send off. It came back and it's full of bacteria. Some not good. So back on antibiotics again. And the cream he's been using is doing nothing.

So honey kept popping up in my head. I even dreamed about using honey on his foot. Next morning, I looked it up on line. Saw several articles about the healing properties of honey. So, we are trying honey on this ulcer. I wanted to document the progress.

When he went to his primary doctor and  told her what we were doing, she about had a fit.  Never said not to use it, but let him know how she didn't approve of it at all. But we will still do it. I called my bee mentor and he's going to come next week to see if I can harvest just one frame from each hive, so we can have fresh raw honey to use. And for him to take a few spoons full each day as well.

I am so excited about this fair! It's this weekend! I'll be taking the grand kids. I hope y'all have a fun happy weekend!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The Fair Is Coming!!!!!!

 When I first heard that a fair was going to be at Mt. Cove, just 5 miles from my house, I wasn't too happy about it. I was thinking about all the traffic up and down the road here. We are also having an Iron man race the end of Sept. too. There have been tons of bikers riding out here from Chattanooga for months now, practicing. It's very annoying and a bit scary when there are packs of bikers on our curvy hilly roads all day. But that's a whole other story.

So this fair, I have found out, will be the real deal. With rides and all! That's what got me excited about it. A real county fair. I haven't been to a real fair since I moved up here 36 years ago. We always had a country agricultural fair in Statesboro when I was growing up that we always went to. Such fun memories. When I found out there was a Hamilton Co. fair in Chatt. I wanted to go. But it was just lots and lots of craft people and fair food. They did have the exhibits and animals, but it just wasn't the same.

When I heard more about this fair, that it was going to have a mid-way and all the rest of a real fair, I was pretty excited about it then. And it's just 5 miles away! I went down there yesterday to see what's going on. It's going to be spread all over this huge farm. The mid-way is on a landing strip. The exhibits will be in a few different places across the road. I think the animals will be in a few big barns. So there will be lots of walking or shuttling going on. This place is several hundred acres. Beautiful place. The county bought this land a few years ago.

So if any of you are in the area Sept. 12-14, come on up. And honk when you go by Outback Farm! Or stop in and say hello. I think I'll be moving the sheep, alpacas and cow to the back pasture.

What a beautiful place to have a fair. It's at the end of West Cove Rd. in the valley between Lookout and pigeon Mts. The mountain in these pics is Pigeon Mt. to the east. Lookout is to the west behind me. So peaceful out here. But not for long!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

My husband,,,

I have the best husband. Even with all his problems, he still helps me out of some of my problems. Like this darn lawn mower. And many others before it. I am not a person who takes very good care of things. And our farm is full of tree roots, branches, big chunks of bark from all our fire wood, rocks, big ole dog bones. So many other things that a lawn mower runs over. And stumps. There used to be cedar trees all down our long driveway. We had them cut down. And now there are foot high stumps, right in the middle of both sides. Plus an incline. Then fence. I was mowing the driveway yesterday and got sucked onto a stump. Then tried to get off the stump and got into the fence. SO up the driveway I go, madder than a wet hen, or wet goat, to get the husband to come help me get it off.

Poor guy, takes him half an hour to hobble down there. But we get it off the stump. I turn it on. He said to turn the blades on. Well, the most awful noise I ever heard came out of that mowing deck. Blades were hitting metal.

So back to the garage we go. Get it up on the thing there. He lays his yoga mat down. It doesn't look like the deck is bent. But the left blade is hitting it. So he takes it off. And these are new blades he had to get because I bent the last ones, just a few weeks ago. So he grinds off a little bit and sharpens them both. It works! So off to finish mowing. He's so good at fixing things I mess up. And can figure out how things work. I love him and think I'll keep him.

So this diabetes is really a mess right now. His ankles are healed and have been for months now. But he got this diabetic ulcer on his right foot about 6 months ago. He's been going to the foot doctor for almost a year now in Nov. The ulcer is not better. It's not as big, but is still there.

SO all night, I'm thinking of natural ways to treat this thing. Honey kept popping up. So I looked up natural ways to treat foot ulcers, and there it is. An article about honey having natural antibacterial properties and healing foot ulcers in diabetics!

That's what we're going to start doing this morning. Just some honey on the wound and wrap with gauze. I'm going to take pictures, but not show them here of course, for records. I'm thinking in at least 2 months, this ulcer will be GONE! And some prayer would help too! Prayer always helps.

Just a little bragging on my hubby. He also never tells me I'm stupid or reckless or a bad mower. He just goes on and fixes my messes for me. Best husband ever!

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Kansas and Abi

 Just look at this. This is my mom's new dog. She's had her 1 week yesterday. She loves my mom. And apparently is in love with my grand daughter Kansas too. This is what I found when I came inside for a minute, while fixing Mom's gate. Look at them, all snuggling and happy. I am so jealous!

When I come to Mom's, Abi barks and runs around to each of the kitchen doors, looking at me. Then she'll run behind Mom's chair and look at me. She just doesn't like me inside Mom's house.

But when we go outside, she is all over, running up to me and letting me pet her. I also went with Mom to take her to the vet last Thursday. She was great, in the car. And at the vet.

She's just nervous when I first get to Mom's. Maybe she smells Bubba and Stella?  I don't know what it could be. But after awhile, she's just fine. She is the best dog. And just loves Mom. And Kansas.

I love how her left eat flips up. In some of the shelter pics, it's all over the top of her head. So cute. And she's a little older than we first thought. She'll be 2 in December. And she is already a spoiled dog. Mom's house looks like a 2 year old lives there, with all the toys and snacks all over.

This is good for Mom to have this dog. She just needs to go about her daily living and Abby will fit right in to it. Just the best thing for her right now.

And she's so good with Kansas. I don't even worry about her being in the house alone with her. And after seeing this, I will never worry. I think she would protect Kansas if she had to.

Sorry for such blurry pictures. I do believe I am going to have to start wearing glasses. Or contacts. Or else have laser surgery. Everything up close is fuzzy anymore. Getting old just about ain't fun.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

More pumpkins.

 I hope all is back to normal at Mrs. T's now. I had to go in all day yesterday, so brought all my wool and needle felting stuff to work on. I made 4 more pumpkins and started on a turkey. I need to get some pipe cleaners for his legs. I took Mrs. T to lunch, then we went to my favorite store, All Books, to get more dyed roving and wool to make more pumpkins. I love that store. But really need to learn to dye all my own wool. I spent $45 there. So need to get over to the studio to make more. And more soap. I need some Orange-clove soap.

Here are all the needle felted pumpkins so far. I'm going to market Sat. so need lots more. I love making these. Every one is so different and I like it better than the one before.

I went out yesterday when I got home and caught this beautiful scene. I love it! Louise with the sheep and the horses across the road with Pigeon Mt. in the background. What a peaceful setting right there.

Louise is such a good cow. But boy, is she a big cow! She's like 10 goats. But she's a good girl.

I went to the garden too and saw all the seeds I had planted last Friday have come up! Must have been a good sign to plant on. Plus we got so much good rain right after I planted.  I need to get some lettuce seeds while I'm out today. Have to go with my mom to take her new dog to the vet for a well check. Mom is so funny. She went to a pet store in town yesterday and spent about $75 on that dog. She told me and then said "What's wrong with me?" I just laughed. Spoiled dog for sure!