Archive for September, 2008


Wednesday on our Homestead…

Nothing very exciting for a Wednesday, but the usual chores.  Dinner included:

Venison steaks on the grill

Baked tomatoes

Cucumber salad

Garlic Bread

Randy is working on my mom’s car and should have it done today.  I worked on finishing up the electric fence around our backyard.  Our dog Thai (below) has a problem with biting the sheep.  We have goat fencing up which only has 4 inch stays, but he was still getting through.  So, we attached two inch chicken wire to the goat fencing, and he still continued to get his nose through to bite the sheep.  So, as a futile attempt we ordered an underground fence for run along the bottom of the fence.  It has seemed to work, but there is an area we would like him to be able to get to, so we are twisting the wire to cancel out the beep/vibrate of that area.

He’s a cute little guy, but he has to stop biting the sheep.  I know, I know, he’s a hearding dog, but he has really hurt some of them. 

I was on chore duty which includes feeding the rams corn, collecting eggs, watering everyone, and closing everyone up for the night.  Last night it also included dragging the protein tub out of the ewes pen.  We put it in every couple of days, but have to take it out every once in awhile or they will eat the whole thing in one setting.  Little pigs!

I also played ball with the “cow” dogs.  Ash and Thai love to play ball and live for our time in the backyard playing fetch.  Koal on the other hand likes to be chased around the backyard which isn’t the handiest game for me, but I do it because I love the little guy.

I got my stuff around for the following day and headed to bed to curl up and read for a little bit.  I am currently reading Without a doubt:  Answering the 20 Toughest Faith Questions.  I haven’t really been all that impressed with the book.  I want facts and this book just isn’t meeting my expectations.  I have also started reading Real Food.  So far so good.  It kind of reminds me of Animal, Vegetable, Miracle which is a great book my aunt gave to me.  The other two are from the library as I am a library junkie!

Today is my  last day of work for the week, and I couldn’t be happier. 

Here’s a quick recap of our menu for the week:

Monday:  Tacos (homemade ww tortillas, spanish rice, sour cream, salsa, and local beef)

The rice was soaked (NT) and cooked up ahead of time.  I used home-canned rotel to make up my salsa and milk from a local dairy for the sour cream.

Tuesday:  We were supposed to go to a meeting for an animal rescue group we are involved with, but I wasn’t feeling well.  So, we had Chicken Noodle Soup and Egg Sandwiches.

The chicken broth was our of our freezer.  I had boiled off a rooster we had butchered (ourselves) and not to gross you out, but 3 pair of chicken feet.  The chicken feet are loaded with gelatin and made a wonderful broth.  Carrots from the garden, ww noodles, and sea salt.  The eggs were from our chickens and served on homemade ww bread.

Wednesday:  above

Thursday (tonight):  We were supposed to have scrambled eggs, but our neighbors would like to buy 5-6 dozen eggs, so we may have a change of plans to conserve eggs.

Maybe sandwiches of some sort and Chicken and Rice Soup.

Hope everyone has a great weekend.  I hope to get some cleaning done around the house.  I’m also going to try to devise a plan to take down some wallpaper and paneling in our spare bedroom so we can paint it.  This includes removing trim, so I’m not looking forward to the task.



My 30th Birthday…

I had a great 30th birthday over the weekend.  It was a cool, cloudy day with a little misting off and on.  However, it was my day to do whatever I wanted.  We slept in until 8:00 which is big stuff for us.  Then, Randy made me breakfast:

Homegrown Eggs on Homemade Bread

We decided to go visit my Grandma and then headed to mom and dad’s for a visit.  Mom was gone for the weekend to a wedding, so we chatted with Dad and played with the dogs (my brother’s two dogs were there since he was at the wedding also).

We skimped on lunch and just cooked some hotdogs over the fire.

Here is where our little dog, Koal, stayed while the fire was blazing.  Their dog house is elevated, so he is underneath it as far away from the fire as possible.  Poor little guy!

Of course ball was involved for the cow dogs!

Dinner included:

Pork Chops (on our propane grill)

Apples on the campfire

Potatoes on the campfire

It was wonderful!

After a few rounds of ball.  Who looks like the better conditioned dog?  If Ash’s defence Thai was living on the streets and had to be in shape.  All Ash has to do was make it to her food bowl twice a day.

I also spent some time picking apples, tomatoes, canning, and dehydrating over the weekend.

And while I was busy canning the dogs were busy also.





Day 2 without buying groceries…

It was a hectic evening at our house.  I was running late after stopping to pick up fall flowers for Mom’s store.  Randy had to hop in the tractor and finish mowing a portion of our pasture, and I headed in the house to make tortillas for dinner.  I had pulled some taco soup out of our deep freeze to warm up when we needed a quick meal.  Added some tomatoes from the garden, some shredded cheddar cheese, and we had dinner.  My sour cream had taken a turn for the worse, so I started a pan of milk on the stove to make a new batch so we would have some for next time.

I also finished up a load of laundry, moved my kefir to the refrigerator, did the evening chores (3 eggs were collected by the way, the girls are really getting with it), and made up lunches for the next day.  It was a busy, hectic evening, and with the sun setting earlier and earlier we are feeling the crunch to get everything done in the evenings.

We noticed one of our dogs, Thai, has a rash (maybe from cleaning the carpets) and both our cats are due for their yearly appointments.  The vet’s September mortgage payment may be on us this month!  But aren’t they worth it.

Thai play ball in our backyard.

Have a great day!


The Weekend in Pictures…

Okay, I finally got a few pictures uploaded to my computer so I can share them.

Just a taste of prairie life.

Ash on kitchen floor.

Our cat, Spooky.  Check out the eyes!

Where my husband was all weekend.

Hope everyone had a wonderful Labor Day weekend!


Labor Day-Monday

This was our day to take it easy, kind of.  We took a minute for a cup of hot tea on our front porch.  We were both feeling a little sluggish with cold-like symptoms. 

I went and got my little garden cart and dug up the cactus in my front flower bed.  I want something prettier up there.  Plus, the cats and sometimes the dogs are in that area and don’t know enough to stay out of them.  I spent a lot of time weeding flower beds and preparing for fall, mums, pansies, asters, and pumpkins.  I love fall!


Pulled Pork Sandwiches w/ Sweet Green Tomatoes

Leftover Potatoes (homegrown)

Leftover Zucchini and Yellow Squash (Farmer’s Market)

While Randy brewed beer in the afternoon I made apple crisp from some of the apples I had picked on Friday.  While the oven was going I baked another loaf of bread and a pan of corn bread for dinner.  The house was so hot by the time we were done in there.  We decided to fo for a swim for possibly the last time this summer.  It’s going to cool off so the pool will probably get closed up this week.

Dad brought the tractor down at 4:00pm, so Randy headed out to mow half our pasture while I did the evening chores.  I picked another 8-9 gallons of tomatoes, changed the pool water for the dogs, watered the sheep, and collected eggs.  The chickens are so much happier now that all the roosters are gone.  Hopefully their egg production gets going before it turns off cold and they quit laying.


Yummy Pinto Beans

Corn Bread

Burgers (For Randy only, he couldn’t bare the thought of a meatless meal, even though the beans had real bacon in them.)

We settled down for the evening and Randy watched some football while I read a book, Spirit of the Harvest .


Labor Day Weekend-Sunday

Sunday morning we were up bright and early.  The girls (sheep) were anxious to get out to pasture and the dogs were ready to go outside.  I headed out to tend to the chickens and feed them the pork broth leftover from the roast I cooked.  They gobbled it up as fast as it hit the pan.


Bacon (locally grown)

Eggs (homegrown)

Tomatoes (homegrown)

Homemade Bread

After breakfast I picked another 8-10 gallons of tomatoes.  After the tomatoes were picked we headed down to our neighbors to get some cucumbers, jalapenos, and some starts off their passionflower to transplant under a fuel tank (not in use) by the garden.  I didn’t realize the passionflower I got from them last year had actually started to grow.  I thought it had died, so now I just have extra planted just incase.

When we got home Randy worked on our pickup, and I headed inside to do a few things.  I ended up making fresh-squeezed lemonade and dehydrated the peel.  I took a glass outside for him and I so he could take a break in the shade.  Mom was taking advantage of our pool, so we sat on the deck and chatted with her for awhile.

In the evening we go cleaned up and headed to a nearby pond for a cookout with friends.  We had a great time and the weather was beautiful.  We had to leave before dark to do our evening chores, but everyone else was equipped with tents and were in it for the long haul.


Labor Day Weekend-Saturday

Time to bake bread.  I cheat a little and use a bread maker to mix and for the first rise.  Then I slap it in a stoneware bread pan for the second rise before baking.  We never by store bought bread.  Every once in a great while we will buy hotdog buns, but this is a treat (more for my husband than myself, it’s the small things in life that make us happy).  I also put a pork roast in the crockpot for pulled pork sandwiches for later. 

Mid-morning it was time to catch up 6 of our roosters (yes, six roosters is ridiculous when you only have 15 hens).  Three bantie roosters met their maker and three Rhode Island Reds were escorted to our neighbors where the were butchered.  They kept two for their help, and we left with one bird and six chicken’s feet to put in a pot.  I put the chicken and feet in a freshly disinfected sink full of ice water and ran to mom and dad’s for yet another crockpot to cook the chicken in.  Once the chicken was done I put the feet in and let that simmer overnight for an incredible broth.

That afternoon when it was too hot to continue working outside I headed inside to heat up the house canning tomatoes, seven quarts to be exact.

I also made up some Nettles Hair Rinse.  It’s really easy and wonderful for your hair and new hair growth (which I need desperately).  Just place one ounce of dried nettles in a quart jar and cover with apple cider vinegar (I recommend Bragg’s).  Put a lid on the jar and let set overnight.  In the morning strain out the nettles and place the liquid in a container ready to use in the shower.  I just squirt a little bit on my scalp after cleaning, let set a few minutes, and rinse.

We indulged in an afternoon swim before doing chores.  What a great way to cool off and relax.  It felt great!


Pulled BBQ Pork Sandwiches (local pork from a 4-Her, homemade BBQ sauce, homegrown and canned sweet green tomatoes, and homemade bread)

Fried Potatoes in Coconut Oil

I promise to post recipes eventually.  I’m just playing catch up right now and don’t have the time.


Adopting one child won't change the world; but for that child, the world will change.

I am the wife to my wonderful husband and joint care giver to the many animals we have acquired on our small farm here on the prairie. This is a bit about our life on our farm. We are striving for simplicity and self-sufficiency, determined to become debt-free, trying to live in tune with the natural cycles of this earth, and challenging ourselves to transition to a diet based on traditional foods. It isn't always easy, and we don't always succeed, but it is a fun learning process. Join us as we stumble through learning how to provide for ourselves, get off the treadmill, and work toward a simpler way of life.

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September 2008
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