Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Garden Happiness

I thought I would share a little of what has been growing on around the homestead:


Potatoes, tomatoes, squash, corn, pumpkin, cucumbers, green beans, bell peppers, hot peppers, onions, garlic, herbs, okra, pinto beans... Lovin' the raised beds!

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Friday, April 11, 2014

New Soaps

Making soap today!  Hooray!

Lemon Verbena,  Lavender Herb,  Country Clothesline, Spring Garden.

All made with Coconut oil, Sunflower oil, Olive oil and Grape Seed oil and Fresh Goat Milk .
These soaps smell wonderful!  Pics to come.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Bread Packets

I have talked about using a bread machine. It saves me some time and we still have great homemade bread, rolls, pizza dough, bagels.......

I also make up bread packets to save even more time.

I keep these stored in the freezer above the frig for easy access.  When it is time to make bread I add the wet ingredients to the machine and dump a packet on top add yeast and let it go.

To make bread packets for the Honey Wheat Bread I start by grinding a few cups of wheat berries. 

Using quart bags, add the correct amount of dry ingredients, the bread flour, whole wheat flour, salt, and I use dry milk. Close bags and label.  Then place them into the freezer until you are ready to make bread.

When you are ready just add the cup of warm water ( I use dry milk so I don't need liquid milk, just the extra half cup of water), 1 egg, 3 Tablespoons honey, 2 Tablespoons butter and the yeast.  Use the dough option if you are going to bake the bread in the oven.

I keep the recipe taped to the inside of the cabinet as well as a "cheat sheet" on what to add with the packets.

When the dough in the bread machine is finished, knead the dough a couple of times on a floured surface and place in bread pan to rise until doubled and then bake.

Having the bread packets in the freezer ready for the machine saves measuring all of the ingredients each time I want to make bread.  I keep the honey on the counter at my "baking station" with measuring spoons and cups. Everything within easy reach.  When I go to grab the packet from the freezer I get an egg from the frig at the same time. 

I make up about eight packets every week or so.

This process can be used for many different recipes that you make often.  Keep the dry ingredients together, then add the wet ingredients at the time of baking. I suggest keeping the recipe nearby for reference or write the recipe on the container.

Happy Baking

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Rubber boots, Not ruby slippers

There's no place like home......There's no place like home.....There's no place like home

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Chickens, Yes?

I have a dilemma. To get more chicks or to not get more chicks.

We are down to eight hens now.  Our rooster was carried off by a fox. The chicken coop needs repair.  The chicken yard should be bigger if we do add to the flock.  That means putting up fence. ( The worst chore ever!)  However they do run free-range most of the time.

Currently they are giving us about six eggs a day.  We have folks asking us for eggs, so that would be a little bit of income to off-set feed costs.

I would much rather Mamma Hen to do the chick-raising, but without a rooster we have no fertile eggs.

My thoughts are Americaunas, I love them.  They are such beautiful birds and lay the blue/green eggs.  Right now we have all brown egg layers.

The big dilemma: I do not enjoy taking care of chicks.  We have never had any real issues with raising them, so I am not sure why it is such a chore for me.  They are the cutest little critters.  That is until they reach that awkward age.  You know, when they look like they have the mange.  Then they start to feather and become beautiful. 

Ok, Ok, I will go pick up chicks this week. I just need to find the heat lamp, get shavings, chick feed, find the chick water bottle, build a brooder...

Luna says not to worry, she will watch out for them.

Yeah, right into her mouth, she'll watch them!