fresh & organic.

20130225-221612.jpg

i want to thank all of you who reached out and left comments or sent private emails after my through His strength, i am fearless post. you guys are incredible and the personal stories, thoughts and prayers you sent my way mean so very much to me. i can’t tell you how touched i was, and still am, by all of your kindness. i seriously love you all to pieces. ❤

for those of you wondering what’s going on…my endoscopy proved to be uneventful. there is nothing going on in my esophagus or digestive system, but the lump they saw in the scans is outside of my esophagus and is definitely pressing in on it, causing the difficulty swallowing and the “something is stuck in my throat” feeling i’ve been having. i have another appointment on march 5 where they’ll do another scope but there will be a needle on the end that will go through the esophagus into the lump and will remove tissue to biopsy.

with all of those recent issues, i’m trying to be even more aware of what we are putting into our bodies. [Read more…]

All my Eggs in One Basket

After an especially long molting season, our chickens have finally begun to lay on a normal schedule. I love collecting the eggs in my little basket. It makes me feel all Caroline Ingalls-ish. And yes, some of those eggs are blue. They come from our Araucana chickens who naturally lay light blue eggs.

Those are the boys favorite. I like to make it a big deal and we joke that we don’t eat green eggs & ham, we eat blue eggs & ham. :) Yeah, we get pretty cheesy around here but we keep ourselves pretty amused.

There are a few hens that seem to be nesting so hopefully we’ll have some new chicks soon! The boys love their spring chickens every year! Unfortunately, there are no new kids like last year. We’re thinking about having her bred again next year though.

Our chickens are definitely one of my favorite things about living our little farm. The fresh eggs and even the sound of our crazy rooster crowing in the morning are things I can’t even imagine living without. I hate eating store bought eggs when we go out for breakfast. They taste so blah to me, they really don’t taste good at all. There’s something so invigorating about it all.

If you’re thinking about getting chickens, this is one of my favorite books. I also love her book on Canning & Preserving. It has some of the best jam recipes I’ve tried.

What’s your favorite thing about Spring?

Peep! Peep!

My best friend came and spent a few days with us last week. The first thing the kids wanted to do was go see the baby chicks, who by the way are growing like weeds! Out of the 10 eggs that hatched we only got 1 yellow chick, who Ace has deemed his favorite.

Here’s cowboy holding his new bud:

If you look closely you could see his feathers starting to come in right under his wing.

Mouse (in the photo below) is all about kisses. She couldn’t wait to kiss the baby goat when she first saw her and now she’s puckering up for the chickies!

Giovanni had a blast collecting the eggs. I love this photo with the egg mid-air (only 1 broke)!

He also had fun leading the pack in their attempt to catch a chicken…

By the end of the day the rugrats were so tuckered out that they went to sleep pretty easily and Athena and I got to hang out and relax a little. We rented BrideWars and poured ourselves a nice glass of wine. When I went to make a plate of cheese and crackers, all I could find were grilled cheese crackers. :) So we made due…

We don’t have cable or watch much t.v. in our house so the only t.v. we have is the one in the kid’s playroom for videos, hence my super-cool entertainment center and giant plasma t.v., lol.

We really enjoyed the movie, especially since we both related so well to the characters and storyline. Athena’s more like Liv and I’m definitely an Emma.

We both got engaged and married only a couple months apart and we were pregnant with our 2nd child together; Lucky and Mouse are only a day apart!

We’re hoping for a BrideWars part II (MommyWars perhpaps?) that depicts all the sleepless nights, puke stained blouses and other thrilling mommy moments. :)

Don’t count your chickens…

Well a few weeks ago we purchased an incubator and Ace carefully placed 2o carefully selected eggs inside. Our chickens hatched a few but none survived. Each Spring a local farm supply store brings in a large variety of chicks and we buy around 20 new ones but we missed it this year. So we decided it would be neat to do it this way and the boys could keep track of the eggs progress.

Here’s what they looked like in the incubator:

And close-up:


This past weekend before we left for Orlando DH went to check on them and still none had hatched. We thought we did something wrong since it had been 27 days and they were supposed to hatch in 21. He didn’t bother them though and figured he’d get rid of them when we got back.

But look what we found when we got back! We must have miscalculated!

The boys went crazy! Only 10 hatched but that was more than we expected. We’re going to put some more in soon.

Ace kept trying to name them all and Lucky kept touching them with his finger and screaming when they chirped! It was the cutest thing.

Adventures in Goat Milking-Part I

Well we started milking our goats a couple of weeks ago and it went a little something like this…

DH built this really cool goat stand and we had it filled with sweet feed for Koukla (a.k.a. mama goat) Now all we need to do is get Koukla to stand on it…which is a bit tricky…

First, DH has to get her in the barn. Then he puts the leash on her and she takes him for a run…


Stubborn as she is, she refuses to walk over to the goat stand so….

he carries her. Now, to the untrained eye DH may appear to have a great big smile on his face as he carries the not so small goat across the yard to be milked. HOWEVER, he is not smiling but yelling at me to open the gate and stop snapping photographs. I willingly comply…

Once on the goat stand I pet her for a few minutes and let her smell her food before her milking. Then I washed her with this udder wash. (Thanks Susan Sophia!)

Luckily for me…I mean Koukla, some friends of ours that have goat milking experience stopped by to give us some pointers…

Alas, the fruits of our labor… Not much I know, but it is getting better. Bruno (our dog) enjoyed some fresh goat’s milk that day.

Hopefully I’ll have a full pail of milk to show you soon!!

Homemade Butter Recipe

We made homemade butter! We got some fresh milk while visiting my brother-in-law and his 2 children in NC (photos and trip details to come) and I couldn’t wait to try making butter. I’ve always heard it was really easy but hadn’t done it since I was a child and I couldn’t remember anything other than having a blast shaking the jar around. [Read more…]

There’s a New Kid in Town!

O.K. So you know how some days you look back and think, Wow! Who would’ve guessed I would’ve done that today?

Well that’s how Monday was for me. I got home from picking up Ace from school and the weather was gorgeous so I opened up all the windows. I made myself a nice fresh squeezed glass of lemonade, sat down at the table and began to read a little. Which truly is a novelty but the boys were both outside playing (without me for once).

All of a sudden I heard one of our goats cry. Like really cry. So I ran outside to see what was going on. I thought maybe she got her horns stuck again or something. When I reached the barn I noticed she was lying down, which is very unusual for her during the day. She’ll sit sometimes but very rarely lay completely down. I looked around and couldn’t find anything wrong.

Then Bruno (our doggy) ran over and scared her so she got up and started walking away very slowly. Normally when he starts barking at her she takes off. As she was walking away I noticed her udders looked full and she was leaking from somewhere along with some other details that I’ll spare you. :)

Now I need to mention at this point, that I know NOTHING about taking care of goats. We’ve had a couple in the past and other than feeding them and clipping their nails, they’re pretty self sufficient. So I am totally freaking out because I know something is wrong. So what do I do? I call the one person who totally knows what she’s doing, especially when it comes to goats. Thank God Susan Sophia was available and she told me that I better get outside because our goat was getting ready to kid!!!

Imagine my surprise! Why was I surprised? How didn’t I know, you ask? Well, let me tell you. We purchased the goats just under two months ago and when DH picked them up the guy told him there was a chance she was pregnant. Now when DH hears the word chance his brain immediately releases the information. So needless to say he never mentioned a thing about it to me. So I call and tell him what Susan said and then he remembers…

So, phone with Sophia-on-the-other-end in hand I run outside. And you know what? Our goat was surely having a baby!
I cannot describe the feeling of seeing that! This tiny baby goat! Ace and Lucky were just amazed (as was I). We watched as the baby rolled around then slowly gained strength in its legs and began to nurse from its mama. What a miracle!

I am so excited! I’ll be checking out every book on goats at the library this weekend! Susan sent me a ton of great information that I have been reading too! In two weeks I can start milking the mama, so I’m checking out all of Susan’s favorite products, like Molly’s homemade udder wash and other great items!

It’s going to be a bit of a challenge because the mama is very nervous about letting people to close to her. I’ve been going out every day now and bringing her treats to help her trust me. I’ll definitely update you and let you know how it’s going!

Thank you again Susan for saving the day!! You’re my hero! :)