Archive for October, 2008

29
Oct
08

Nepal Program is Official!

Holt International has received its license for adoption in Nepal.  This is a pilot program meaning we will be one of the first families to journey to Nepal for adoption since their laws have been revised.  It’s exciting and scary all at the same time.

Our medical exams are scheduled for Nov. 19th and our classes are schedule for Dec. 6-7.  We are hoping to be able to have our social work visit between the two, but not sure if this will be possible yet or not.  We are probably asking a little too much with the holidays, but a girl can dream, right?

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29
Oct
08

New Menu Planning…

I have decided if Randy and I are going to keep up with our evening chores we are going to have to make some changes to our evening meals.  Cooking from scratch is healthy and yummy and all of that good stuff, but it is also time consuming.  With both of us working full-time it’s going to take some doing to eat healthy and get everything done that needs to be done.

So, I am working up a menu plan, fairly general, to make our evenings more open to taking care of our animals (especially with baby chicks on the way).

Monday:  Crockpot

Tuesday:  Soup and Sandwiches (usually egg or grilled cheese)

Wednesday:  Crockpot new or leftovers (add tortillas, cornbread, etc.)

Thursday:  Grill (from the freezer) 

Friday:  This will be our big meal of the week because I am off on Fridays.  I also hope to do some cooking for the freezer so we have casseroles in the freezer to get us through the following week.

We will probably have to implement some rice and beans back into our menu to allow for some bulk cooking.

Our menu this week isn’t on track with this new menu plan, but here is what I have planned for the week.

Monday:  Egg (homegrown) sandwiches on homemade bread

Tuesday:  Link Sausage cooked over sweet potatoes and turnips in our cast iron skillet.

Wednesday:  Stir-Fry (bell peppers, onions, tomatoes, turnips, and sweet potatoes over brown rice).  The rice is soaking as we speak.

Thursday:  Pork chops on the grill and veggies of some sort.

Friday:  Roasted Chicken, Garlic Mashed Potatoes and Turnips, and a salad.

Cook ahead:

Bierocks

Black Bean Chicken Chili

Chicken Tetrazinni

Hopefully I will get some tortillas made, but we’ll see how the day goes.  I also have a lot of housekeeping to do.  One day a week just doesn’t cut it when you are trying to cook for 4 days and clean for 7 days worth.

Hope everyone has a great week.

28
Oct
08

Daily Chores…

Randy will be working late tonight, so I am on my own with chores.  I thought this might be a good opportunity to give a little rundown of what our evening chores consist of as of right now.

The first thing I do when I pull in the driveway: 

Let the cats (2) out of the pool house so they can get some fresh air and stretch their legs.

Unload the car

Let the dogs (3) inside, and take off collars.

Feed them and add cod liver oil to each bowl.  Give them fresh water inside and outside.  Let them back outside after they have all eaten.

Change into work clothes and head outside.

Cats:  feed, water, change litter box, and feed our stray kitty

Chickens:  collect eggs, feed, and water, give kitchen scraps, and check oyster shell

Sheep:  feed grain to three separate groups, fill stock tanks for three separate groups, give a handful of grain to the llama, move protein tubs around, check salt and mineral and fill if needed, look over well to make sure everyone is healthy, and close pasture gates.

Get the mail.

Head inside to assemble dinner, eat, hand wash dishes, and wash the eggs that have just been collected.  After dinner it’s back outside.

Before dark:

Lock up cats in pool house.

Close up the chickens.

Let the dogs out again (and back in).

Change into pajamas.  Snuggle with the dogs for awhile.  Read.  Go to bed.

This is daily.  Rain or Shine.  Hot or Cold.  Sick or Well.  This doesn’t include the extras when someone is sick and in need of doctoring, lambing, bottle feeding, baby chicks (which should be arriving in a week or so), etc.  

Luckily, although my workload will be increased significantly without Randy there to help, I will not have to make and clean up dinner. 

The “simple life” isn’t always easy, but it is rewarding.

I was just talking to a co-work about lambing and having to pull lambs.  She said the usual, “I could never do it” (pull a baby lamb).  I told her I never thought I could either until there is an animal who counts on you to take care of them.  They look at you with those eyes saying, “help me” or “I don’t know what to do” and you know you have no choice.  I told her I have two baby lambs (not really babies anymore) walking around our farm that would not be here today if I had not pulled them (mamas either).  You do what you have to do, for their sake and for your sake.  It’s not for everyone, but it is the most rewarding way of life I have lived so far.  I hope to be able to live this life for a long time.

28
Oct
08

Daily Chores….

Randy will be working late tonight, so I am on my own with chores.  I thought this might be a good opportunity to give a little rundown of what our evening chores consist of as of right now.

 

The first thing I do when I pull in the driveway: 

 

Let the cats (2) out of the pool house so they can get some fresh air and stretch their legs.

 

Unload the car

 

Let the dogs (3) inside, and take off collars.

 

Feed them and add cod liver oil to each bowl.  Give them fresh water inside and outside.  Let them back outside after they have all eaten.

 

Change into work clothes and head outside.

 

Cats:  feed, water, change litter box, and feed our stray kitty

 

Chickens:  collect eggs, feed, and water, give kitchen scraps, and check oyster shell

 

Sheep:  feed grain to three separate groups, fill stock tanks for three separate groups, give a handful of grain to the llama, move protein tubs around, check salt and mineral and fill if needed, look over well to make sure everyone is healthy, and close pasture gates.

 

Get the mail.

 

Head inside to assemble dinner, eat, hand wash dishes, and wash the eggs that have just been collected.  After dinner it’s back outside.

 

Before dark:

Lock up cats in pool house.

Close up the chickens.

Let the dogs out again (and back in).

 

Change into pajamas.  Snuggle with the dogs for awhile.  Read.  Go to bed.

 

This is daily.  Rain or Shine.  Hot or Cold.  Sick or Well.  This doesn’t include the extras when someone is sick and in need of doctoring, lambing, bottle feeding, baby chicks (which should be arriving in a week or so), etc. 

 

Luckily, although my workload will be increased significantly without Randy there to help, I will not have to make and clean up dinner. 

 

The “simple life” isn’t always easy, but it is rewarding.

 

I was just talking to a co-work about lambing and having to pull lambs.  She said the usual, “I could never do it” (pull a baby lamb).  I told her I never thought I could either until there is an animal who counts on you to take care of them.  They look at you with those eyes saying, “help me” or “I don’t know what to do” and you know you have no choice.  I told her I have two baby lambs (not really babies anymore) walking around our farm that would not be here today if I had not pulled them (mamas either).  You do what you have to do, for their sake and for your sake.  It’s not for everyone, but it is the most rewarding way of life I have lived so far.  I hope to be able to do it for a long time.

28
Oct
08

New Menu Plans…

I have decided if Randy and I are going to keep up with our evening chores we are going to have to make some changes to our evening meals.  Cooking from scratch is healthy and yummy and all of that good stuff, but it is also time consuming.  With both of us working full-time it’s going to take some doing to eat healthy and get everything done that needs to be done.

 

So, I am working up a menu plan, fairly general, to make our evenings more open to taking care of our animals (especially with baby chicks on the way).

 

Monday:  Crockpot

Tuesday:  Soup and Sandwiches (usually egg or grilled cheese)

Wednesday:  Crockpot new or leftovers (add tortillas, cornbread, etc.)

Thursday:  Grill (from the freezer) 

Friday:  This will be our big meal of the week because I am off on Fridays.  I also hope to do some cooking for the freezer so we have casseroles in the freezer to get us through the following week.

 

We will probably have to implement some rice and beans back into our menu to allow for some bulk cooking.

 

Our menu this week isn’t on track with this new menu plan, but here is what I have planned for the week.

 

Monday:  Egg (homegrown) sandwiches on homemade bread

Tuesday:  Link Sausage cooked over sweet potatoes and turnips in our cast iron skillet.

Wednesday:  Stir-Fry (bell peppers, onions, tomatoes, turnips, and sweet potatoes over brown rice).  The rice is soaking as we speak.

Thursday:  Pork chops on the grill and veggies of some sort.

Friday:  Roasted Chicken, Garlic Mashed Potatoes and Turnips, and a salad.

 

Cook ahead:

Bierocks

Black Bean Chicken Chili

Chicken Tetrazinni

 

Hopefully I will get some tortillas made, but we’ll see how the day goes.  I also have a lot of housekeeping to do.  One day a week just doesn’t cut it when you are trying to cook for 4 days and clean for 7 days worth.

 

Hope everyone has a great week.

28
Oct
08

We must be crazy…

Pretty sure we have lost it. Yesterday we placed an order for more Rhode Island Red chicks. We had another one fly into the backyard (two total) to meet her end. We have debated on clipping their wings, putting chicken wire of the back of their yard, and some other ideas. We want them to be able roam free for a couple of reasons. The cost of feed would kill us if we had to feed them 100% of their food intake, the eggs are healthier due to their foraging, and it is healthier for our sheep when they forage and eat larvae so the sheep don’t pick it up. We will see what kind of winter project we come up with to keep the chickens and dogs separate. In the meantime we will be preparing to have babies on our farm once again. We have been roofing our house the past two weekends. I will post pictures once it is presentable. We did dark green shingles and they look so good. I love it! We had our first big freeze early Monday morning, so the tomatoes are history. It wasn’t the greatest gardening year, but financially we did just as well as the previous year (thanks to supply not meeting demand which enable us to raise our prices some). Now we are relying on our eggs for some cash flow. Not only is the number of hens slowly dwindling due to lack of brainpower, but the onset of winter and shorter days will begin to take its toll on the girls laying ability. By spring, if the girls stay out of the backyard, we should have a nice sized flock again and be able to meet the demand we suddenly have. Hope everyone is doing well. We are keeping busy and enjoying our little Eden Pure heater to keep us warm on these cold evenings. We still haven’t turned on our heat and with the price of propane hope to hold out awhile longer. We couldn’t make it without our little heater.

27
Oct
08

We must be crazy…more chickens?

Pretty sure we have lost it.  Yesterday we placed an order for more Rhode Island Red chicks.  We had another one fly into the backyard (two total) to meet her end.  We have debated on clipping their wings, putting chicken wire of the back of their yard, and some other ideas.  We want them to be able roam free for a couple of reasons.  The cost of feed would kill us if we had to feed them 100% of their food intake, the eggs are healthier due to their foraging, and it is healthier for our sheep when they forage and eat larvae so the sheep don’t pick it up.  We will see what kind of winter project we come up with to keep the chickens and dogs separate.  In the meantime we will be preparing to have babies on our farm once again.

We have been roofing our house the past two weekends.  I will post pictures once it is presentable.  We did dark green shingles and they look so good.  I love it!

We had our first big freeze early Monday morning, so the tomatoes are history.  It wasn’t the greatest gardening year, but financially we did just as well as the previous year (thanks to supply not meeting demand which enable us to raise our prices some).  Now we are relying on our eggs for some cash flow.  Not only is the number of hens slowly dwindling due to lack of brainpower, but the onset of winter and shorter days will begin to take its toll on the girls laying ability.  By spring, if the girls stay out of the backyard, we should have a nice sized flock again and be able to meet the demand we suddenly have.

Hope everyone is doing well.  We are keeping busy and enjoying our little EdenPure heater to keep us warm on these cold evenings.  We still haven’t turned on our heat and with the price of propane hope to hold out awhile longer.  We couldn’t make it without our little heater.




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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