Coming Soon: Free Book

Coming Soon: Free Book
Planning to give away a book or two!

Sunday, January 13, 2019

I came in exhausted... no wonder!

I am down to the last few bales of 2017 hay.  The 2018 hay was stacked behind it. I needed to get it moved to a usable position. 
I started during morning chores. I put tarps down and piled up hay 4 bales high. I got about half done in the morning and finished the second half during evening chores. Evening chores also included moving 3 wheel barrels full of feed.
I tried to get a picture from a different view. But there was too much structure in the way to show all those bales! I guess that I packed them too well. 
It is almost time for bed and I'm feeling all of the dust and hay that flew in the air today.  I'm making my hands into a diffuser by putting 2 drops of these oils in my palms and breathing with my hands cupped in front of my face.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Frozen zucchini

I took several packages of fruit and veggies out of the freezer when I cleaned it Friday evening.  I have been using frozen kohlrabi and broccoli in our meals and I'm making zucchini bread for Dale and muffins for me.
Muffins for Trisha
I used 2 packages of zucchini (one was drained).
6 Farm Fresh eggs!
1 Tablespoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder 
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3-4 drops cinnamon 
1-2 drops nutmeg
2 Tablespoon honey 
1/2 cup walnuts, blueberries and raisins 
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut and coconut flour 
Time for a supper break: hotdish with hamburger, garlic, mushrooms, kohlrabi, broccoli and topped with shredded potatoes and covered with cream of mushroom soup.
Back to the muffins: I had 4 squares of dark chocolate with sea salt and almonds.  Yes! I chopped them into small chunks.
When I mixed everything together it was too wet. When working with zucchini (especially frozen zucchini) you need to monitor the moisture.  Coconut flour is the same. It takes a moister mix. My zucchini won, I added about another 1/2 cup coconut flour.
Dale's standard recipe of zucchini nut bread (the small loaf) was ready to come out of the oven. Too much sugar for me.
I scooped up my muffin mix and put them in liners.  Then I dusted the top with cinnamon. 
Dale's second loaf came out of the oven a perfect golden brown. I normally cook at 350 but this recipe called for 325. Interesting...
My muffins are done! The house smells so wonderful right now!
I let them cool then taste tested my first one. Delicious or as my neighbor would say when I was young "scrumptious!".

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Time for lambs?

Troy and Ray came out to help me create a windbreak fence for the sheep and young lambs.
We used an old fence that was laying around.  It is rusty and bent but with plywood attached to one side and a wheel on the bottom,  it will work.
It is just over halfway back and still leaves enough room for the sheep to get to the forward feeding troughs. 
The sheep were curious and walked back and forth around the fence after we finished. 
There are 2 feeding troughs inside the new lambing area.
It is looking good!  I will need to find and setup a small water dish by the feeders for the sheep once the lambing pen is closed up for the season. 
The gate will close to the 6×6 on the right.  I still need to figure out a way to latch it shut.  There is a chain on the end. That will help but I need to think of some way to work so the chain will function like a latch.

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Bird Feed

Happy New Year! My special project for the day is rendering suet and creating bird feeder blocks. 
Dale picked up 6 bags of suet and the beef lungs on Christmas eve.  Good thing it is cold out.  The garage was like a refrigerator for the suet. I started with a large pan with a small amount of coconut oil to prime the rendering process.
I broke apart the suet so that it was in smaller chunks for melting. 
Then I put some bird seed into a metal bowl and started to dip out the melted fat.  I chose not to be a perfectionist and leave lumps of fat inside. 
I chose to use my new Young Living bowl to mix the seed and suet together. 
I prepared 4 suet cages ahead of time.  I put aluminum foil around them to work as temporary sides. I am shooting from the hip with this project. 
I also put foil in a  small box.
Dale had purchased a hanger this fall and a replacement suet/seed mixture.  I wasn't sure if my mixture would stick so I lined the container that his suet came infilled in around the hanger.
I only processed 3 bags of suet.  I was out of containers and had nearly a full bowl left. I put foil on a cookie sheet.
Then I flipped the cookie sheet onto the top of the bowl.
I tapped it down a few times hoping that the seeds would fall away from the bowl. Time will tell.
The 4 cages were set or frozen (they were on the cookie sheet.) I guess that I chose a good day to do this.  It is 3 degrees Fahrenheit outside. 
It didn't take the birds very long to start checking out the feed.  Now onto the next project!

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Knit/Weaving with wool

I learned something new in 2018.  I've had a knitting machine for a few years. But now I have learned how to blend acrylic and wool together i. A woven design.

It was challenging to get and keep the correct tension on the working threads as well as the project.  If the project isn't weighted down, it will get caught in the needles.
I carefully and methodically removed the stitches in the last row. The first and last rows take the longest. 
Periodically, the woven threads catch on the posts between the needles. No worries! I just weave them back into the work.
I also made a 20 stitch wide, 2 pattern tall swatch. I washed and dried the swatch. There was no shrinkage and the wool felted beautifully.  I will give the swatch to the mother so that she will know what to expect when she washes the baby's blanket. 
Ta da! I'm done.  All I need to do is catch up with the little cutie and give him his new blankie!

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

New quilt

Last fall, I finished making dale a tumbling block quilt. A friend of ours who is a veteran asked how much it would cost to complete one for him. Dale offered to help by cutting the pieces. We finished 12/31/2018.
You need a light, medium and dark fabric each cut into a diamond shape to make the block. Dale didn't cut the pieces. Instead he ironed the seam at the Chevron stage.
I choose to sew the usung the Y stitch.  Ot makes it look l I'll ke a 3-D block.
The problem is at one intersection there is a 6-point star created. It is challenging to sew and get all of the points lined up.
Here is an update of a few rows completed.  Depending on the view, it looks like the blocks are rolling across the quilt. 
How much was done? The top (by the headboard) is complete and the width (sitting on the white roll) is also complete.  I was working steps across so that I could sew as many as possible before needing to stop and iron the seems open.
Squaring the edges is the most difficult portion of putting the pieces together. It is a different fraction of total square. 
To make sure that all the side pieces are in place, I put it on Dale's Kingsize bed.
The veteran that this is being made for has a brother and sister of Skyler.  So Skyler needed to try it out.
Dog tested and approved! Now to send it out for quilting. 🤩