Pioneer Woman at Heart
One Flourishing, Frugal and Fun Family!
One family learning to live off the land, cut back on expenses, and to live a simpler and a more self-sufficient lifestyle.
"Eat it up,
Wear it out,
Make it do,
Or go without."
~A Pioneer Sampler, by Barbara Greenwood~
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
I pulled more lettuce to top our bean burritos (which are made with dry pinto beans and onions). The red onions we have grown are delicious too.
I also weeded a flower bed, and thinned some, placing them into several other flower beds. I dug up a pink cone flower and planted it up by the southeast corner, near a small lonely bush. I added a perennial (I have yet to correctly identify, and will post a photo when it blooms) and more forget-me-nots.
I noticed that my gladiolus are about to start blooming soon. I can't wait to see them when I sit on my front porch. I haven't had them in my flower gardens since our last move.
The fiesta daisies are beautiful next to my thick dark hostas, and many marigolds re-seeded from last years flowers.
The green onion went to seed giving us many more starters to plant or to share.
One sweet corn stalk was broken down and eaten by an animal. Possibly a rabbit, since the corn is not on the stalk yet. We are placing glass jars, upside down, around the corn rows to deter the little boogers from entering - a trick from my Grandmother.
I feel good about today's garden work, especially getting my first canning experience completed. I have many supplies to buy, but will add them to our wish list for later.
We did it! Finally! After we picked (mostly by my son) 10 cups of wild black raspberries, we now have 6 pints of homemade canned jam! Every recipe was different, and every source we checked on how long to process the jars had different measurements and times. We cannot wait to enjoy our hard work. We all participated in it and it's 6 jars of jam I don't have to buy at the store, and it is much healthier by making it with fresh berries. What a blessing it was to find fresh berries on our property!
Monday, June 28, 2010
Thank you all for helping me identify plants and pests. Our goal is to be self-sufficient, and not have to run to the store for items we can grow or provide through dairy animals etc. We don't believe in chemicals on or in our food either.
It's been an interesting start with this journey. Many people think we have lost our marbles and that the grocery store is the best invention every. Other people think we chose a way of life that is too much work.
We now have about 6 cups of wild black raspberries. We have located an entire are of berries and can't wait to pick more. Making jam will be a fun and good experience for us. Espeically with berries I didn't have to buy.
Sunday, June 27, 2010
If we can muster up the energy to pick 8 cups of berries, I will make homemade jam for the first time ever. The weather is sweltering hot today. My eight year old was covered in sweat, picking berries, before 10am. The humidity is horrible today, so rain should be on it's way.
Friday, June 25, 2010
We have these small orange worms on our potato leaves. They are eating away and I keep picking them off. We don't use chemicals, so that is out of the question.
I tried looking these up on the Internet but nothing under potato pests comes up in my search. Any idea what these are and can I pick them off and feed them to my chickens?
Of course, like any movie today, there are parts that they could have left out. Parts that would allow this movie to be more appropriate for the younger crowd. I did enjoy it and found myself laughing hysterically when she cooked the lobsters. My husband laughed when she had her break down - as he has seen me during a cooking moment as well. It was very realistic, funny, and inspiring if you love to cook.
In fact, I went to the library and checked out the very same cookbook they use in the movie. There are so many recipes that I can use with veggies from my garden. Cucumber recipes, Eggplant recipes, and lots more.
Our local newspaper tends to rate all movie reviews with a poor review. I think they gave this one a 2 1/2 star rating (out of 5). It definitely deserves a higher rating.
Yesterday, while my husband was grocery shopping, he pushed his cart past the lobster tank. He told me he almost came home with a few of them to cook. I found this very funny! I have never cooked lobster so this movie may have started something in our house.
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
For dinner we enjoyed homemade whole wheat pancakes made with hand picked wild black raspberries. Very delicious! It was something inspiring for, the two kids who went out to pick them, to enjoy eating them. They saw their hard work was worth it.
Monday, June 21, 2010
We discovered several wild black raspberry bushes on our property. With 6 acres, there is still more to discover. We are delighted to find these this year. They are delicious. I'm glad we can enjoy these - grown without harmful chemicals.
Saturday, June 19, 2010
We stay clear from the direct sun, during the hottest part of the day, as much as possible. Today I noticed several puzzles set up around the house. One daughter has a 750 piece puzzle going, one just finished a 100 piece puzzle, and another is working a 500 piece puzzle. The last one had me cracking up. It's a puzzle of jelly beans. I'm guessing she will be working on that puzzle for a long time. Then again, maybe not.
I'm glad I kept a few easier puzzles in my closet, because hot days like today are definitely for slower paced activities. Perfect for puzzles.
This is our first year to grow potatoes. Extended family purchased starters and shared them with us. Next year we plan to grow red potatoes. I have plans to chop them up for frozen hashbrowns after we harvest them. Right now we are digging around the plants and pulling the smaller ones to boil up with green beans. They sure do taste better than potatoes from the store. When these are pulled from the ground, they are very hard, unlike the softer ones you find in the store. Same thing with turnips, beets and other root vegetables. It's so nice to pull something from the garden and made a dinner with it. And is chemical free, grown with rain water and good ol' sunshine.
I can't wait to see what we will eat next. It's been hard work taking care of the garden, but it has been a huge help with living frugal and healthy.
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Saturday, June 12, 2010
Now, the question is, should we try another place at another time? Or do we say we're done? It's too hot to decide today. I guess with the recession, it's even harder to sell handmade items because people have cut back on spending.
And here we were more concerned that we would get rained out and it still hasn't rained.
I think I will head to the porch and read a good book to relax. That is, if the rain and predicted storms don't force me off the porch.
Friday, June 11, 2010
I had my first salad today, using fresh home grown lettuce from the garden. I even cut about 3 long green onions and snipped it in to the salad. Yum! I can't wait until the tomatoes, green peppers, spinach and everything else is up. It's great to be eating so healthy too. It's also nice not to have to drive to town and buy lettuce.
Crocheting baby booties has been on my "bucket" list for a long time. Funny how things work out, because I am just now finding a pattern I like, and all my kids are grown. It was sure a fun way to mess with the kids today! LOL! Each one kept asking, "and why are you making baby booties?" It was fun to get them all worked up!
The top photo is the progress I am making. The one on the left is the first one I made. The one on the right (top photo) is the second one, and much better looking. I worked the ends of the bootie tie in as well.
The kids are writing their own bucket lists as I sit here and write. They were so bored that they went on-line to find "stuff" to do and decided to write 100 things on a bucket list. It's better than hearing them complain, or say "Mom you're no fun anymore!"
Well, another thing is off my own bucket list now. Maybe down the road I can donate baby booties to shelters and centers? Time will tell. I got the chance to make it today because it rained. The humidity is horrible so we are indoors. Although we still do not have air conditioning on, we are a bit more comfortable inside than outside.
One of our hens recently experienced prolapse. We built a separate pen for her immediately, to keep her away from the other hens. From what I learned at www.MaryJanesFarm.org, the hens will pick on her and she will diminish. She has now recovered, but is not laying eggs just yet. She's perky and I even caught her chasing a fly in her pen. There is always something to learn on our homestead. I'm sure it will become more interesting when we add more animals.
Thursday, June 10, 2010
Even thought 3 kids helped me in garden, I still have a lot of work to do. I need to hoe between the rows and pull some stubborn weeds. I managed to re-plant beet seeds, and dropped some radish seeds in between the spinach. Not much of the spinach came up either. Most likely from the downpour of constant rain we had a few weeks ago.
We have a problem stray cat. He keeps coming to the house every night, attacking our 9 month old kitten, which is the only outside male cat. We've brought them inside each night to avoid any scrapples. One screen in the house is practically torn to bits from the inside cats warning this stray to leave. We've brought the barn cat food inside each night, but it won't stop coming. I will have to figure a way to get rid of him, even if it means having the humane society trap it. He's a pretty mean one. This is why people absolutely need to have their barn cats trapped, neutered and spayed, and released. If someone had neutered this stray, he probably wouldn't be coming around like he is.
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
Saturday, June 5, 2010
Thursday, June 3, 2010
After a few days of rain, the potato plants are blooming. Many of the seeds that recently sprouted, are rising a few inches after each rain also. It's too wet to work the garden today, but if the rain holds out I will weed and hoe tomorrow. It's fun to see what's growing each day.